Turn Your Web-Writing Weaknesses Into Strengths — Today!

Since choosing my niche in personal development, I’ve been reading, listening, and learning about how to become a fear-killing, confidence-building machine. I’ve been poring through books and absorbing information like a sponge.

In the process, I’ve come across a powerful method for succeeding at anything, and it’s just too good to keep to myself. The secret lies in learning to position yourself so your weaknesses don’t matter — and in some cases, they can even accentuate your strengths.

The golden nugget I’m about to share with you comes from “Yes! 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Persuasive” by Robert Cialdini. It’s only human to want to keep your weaknesses to yourself. But, in this book, Cialdini says one of the best ways to convert a weakness into a strength is to own it. Mention your weaknesses up front, and your clients will find you more trustworthy, whether you’re selling web-writing services or used cars.

If you’ve completed a web-writing program, or two … If you’ve studied countless hours and can look at a website and discern immediately why it’s underperforming … if you know the principles of good web writing … Yet you’re still on the bench, waiting to get in the game … There’s a good chance you’re worried about your weaknesses or shortcomings. You’re probably afraid the client will only see what you don’t have, instead of what you do.

Overcoming Objections About Yourself

The good news is, you already have the tools to conquer this all-too-common problem. As a web writer, you’re already familiar with overcoming objections in your copy, especially if you write sales copy. The trick is to use those same techniques to overcome client objections about choosing your web-writing services.

To get you started, here are 5 common web-writer “weaknesses” — and how you can turn them into strengths …

Weakness #1. You don’t have any testimonials.

This is a tricky one — and probably the one I hear most often. So, how can you overcome this weakness?

Well, there are a lot of tips on Wealthy Web Writer already … Things like offering to do free or discounted work in exchange for testimonials or asking past co-workers for character references.

But, if you don’t have any testimonials — and the above advice doesn’t apply to your situation — you can be honest …

You can simply say, “I’ve been trained by the best. I have samples I’ve completed as part of my training. I’d be glad to send those over.”

When Sean McCool was first getting started, he didn’t have a ton of experience writing copy. But, he wrote a letter to a company he wanted to work with (Stansberry & Associates). Instead of worrying about weaknesses he might have, he focused on all the things he’s experienced in his life that make him a terrific copywriter. Stuff like: “a disciplined work ethic,” “sales insights,” and “a passion and a respect for the power of words.”

Then, he ended his letter by saying, “P.S. Remember Don Hauptman’s Postcard Story where David Ogilvy lamented, ‘My mistake to have missed you when you were cheap.’ I may not be Don Hauptman, but I am about as cheap as I’m ever going to be; Take advantage.”

How’s that for refreshing honesty? And, you know what? It worked like a charm! Now Sean is a very popular copywriter, doing what he loves, and getting paid for it.

Weakness #2. You can’t guarantee your results.

This one worried me for a while. I’d heard that some clients ask, “Do you guarantee your copy will sell my widget?” Or “Can you guarantee I’ll get more traffic if I pay you for SEO?”

Of course, as I became more experienced, I realized the big clients don’t ask those questions because they understand the nature of the business. Very few web writers guarantee their results because the results depend on a ton of other factors: the website’s traffic, target market, offer, positioning, competition, and so on.

But, if you’re working with smaller clients, and you can’t guarantee your results, here’s what you can do instead: guarantee on-time delivery and/or their satisfaction.

If you’re serious about your business, there is no reason you should ever turn in an assignment late, but guaranteeing on-time delivery will put your clients at ease and make them more willing to work with you.

As for guaranteeing their satisfaction … Why wouldn’t you? If you do a project your client isn’t happy with, you shouldn’t be happy either. I personally guarantee my client’s satisfaction — even if it means more than the typical “2 rounds of revisions” — because I’m looking at the bigger picture: a long-term relationship, referrals, and repeat work.

Focusing on what you do bring to the table — a killer 2-part guarantee — will keep the attention off what you can’t (and shouldn’t) offer — a results-based guarantee.

Weakness #3. You can’t write a complete sales letter to save your life.

If this is your current weakness, it’s okay! You might not be able to write a sales letter, or you might not want to — but this weakness is actually a good thing because it allows you to focus and specialize. You can ignore sales letters completely and position yourself as the expert in another area. For example: autoresponders, white papers, or squeeze pages.

You’ll be able to put all of your energy into your specialization, streamline your marketing efforts, and get more practice in one area — instead of trying to spread yourself too thin.

You’ll be able to tell potential clients you focus 100% of your energy on the copy style they’re looking for.

This keeps the focus off the fact that you can’t — or won’t — write sales letters. But, it also positions you to get more referrals and be able to charge more as a specialist writer. In no time, you will be the expert in your specialization because most web writers try to do it all.

Weakness #4. You’re worried about your lack of a degree.

Before we dig into this “weakness,” it’s worth mentioning there are a lot of highly-paid web writers who do not have a degree, so you shouldn’t let that keep you from success.

If you’re holding back because you don’t have a degree, it’s likely a confidence issue you need to work out within yourself. Once you start getting clients who don’t even ask, you’ll begin to see how little a degree matters in this industry.

If you’re still worried about it, take a page from Avis’ playbook. Avis is in the rental car business, and unfortunately, they were rated number 2. Rather than worry about it, they brought attention to it. They said, “We’re number 2, but we try harder.” If you’re a web writer worried about your lack of a degree, you probably try harder to make up for it.

Who wouldn’t want a web writer that bends over backwards to make their copy — and their service — as exceptional as possible?

If a client asks about your degree, be honest. Then, point out all your strengths and what you can do for them. Put the focus back on your results, your copywriting training, and what you bring to the table. Maybe you’re capable of speaking the language of their typical customer, or your copy is conversational and easy to read.

Weakness #5. You’re a web writer, but you’re no good at SEO or social media.

If this is your weakness, I do recommend gaining some basic knowledge in both SEO and social media. These are influential skills for a web writer to have.

However, in the meanwhile, don’t put off approaching clients. And, while you’re learning, don’t let this weakness hold you back. You can partner with another web writer who is an SEO expert. Then, you can boast that you have someone on your team who is an SEO expert. You could even offer all your web copy as keyword-rich copy. Just make sure you mark up your rates to cover your fees and the fees of your SEO expert. People expect to pay more for quality services from experts.

I don’t know about you, but I think a “copywriter partnered with an SEO expert” sounds more impressive than a “copywriter who knows just a little SEO.”

How’s that for turning a weakness into a major strength?

You can turn almost any weakness into a strength with a little finesse. If your weakness isn’t listed above, define what it is, and then consider how you intend to overcome it …

Do you plan to learn something new?

If so, ask yourself if you really, truly need that skill. If yes, you can find someone else to partner with until you find the time to learn it on your own. If not, then focus your efforts in another area and become a specialist.

Do you think you need more experience?

If so, give your experience an honest look — have you at least completed a program in your area of expertise? If yes, you have what it takes to get your first client and your weakness is your lack of confidence. Build yourself up by listening to motivational CDs, working with your peers to get feedback, and telling yourself you can do this.

If you haven’t completed a program, it’s possible that you don’t have the experience you need. Your plan of action should be to choose one area of focus: web writing, SEO, autoresponders, social media — just choose one. Then, get a quality program that focuses on that specialty.

Spend the next few months going through the program and completing some practice assignments. By the time you’re done, you’ll be ready to take on some clients in that niche.

Do you think you need more proof of your abilities?

If so, a good technique is to spend some time setting up your own Money-Making Website. Write your own copy and articles and use your site as a case study of what you’re capable of. An added bonus: your Money-Making Website might wind up making you an extra several hundred dollars a month.

What else are you worried about? What weaknesses do you feel you need to overcome? Post your answers in the comments and I’ll give you suggestions to help you reposition your business — or your mind — to get past what’s holding you back and become the amazing web writer you were meant to be.

This article, Turn Your Web-Writing Weaknesses Into Strengths — Today!, was originally published by Wealthy Web Writer.

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Published: December 7, 2011

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