Building Your Portfolio is Easier Than You Think

Lane Sennett back for Step 2 in My 5 Steps to Success series. Today, I'd like share how I built my portfolio, which is an integral part of getting hired.

How do you prove to yourself and your prospective B2B clients (or clients in any other niche for that matter) that you can do the work? Start by creating samples for other B2B businesses.

You could do work for a family friend or local company. Create a practice web page as if you owned a business in your niche or other piece of copy for a company you find online. And, of course, write the content pages of your own website.

I volunteered and helped some friends with their small business website pages, wrote a case study, and a few blog posts. This gave me some experience dealing with business marketing challenges even though these businesses were not in my specific technology niche. I also found a few technology websites and rewrote their landing pages and added headlines.

A critical point I wove throughout my own website content was how my experience as an IT consultant working for both technology customers and vendors, gave me a unique insider’s perspective of their business and their customer needs.

Your niche research will reveal your own unique perspective which you can provide your clients based on your background and experience. Knowing that business, what are they missing? Develop this to create your Unique Sales Proposition (USP) and describe it thoroughly in your website pages.

Like Rebecca says, “You know way more than you think you do!” based on your history combined with the AWAI training, resources, and materials. You have a lot to offer, even if you're a new copywriter.

These activities will help build your confidence in your own writing abilities and talking to clients about their marketing challenges and goals. By starting out with people you know, you'll be confident as soon as a real client calls.

Now you may be wondering, how did I keep moving forward through these steps and stay motivated? Tomorrow, I’ll explain the wonderful support network, proofreading assistance, and goal tracking my mastermind group provided (and still provides on a weekly basis)!

Do you have questions or comments about creating your samples or website? I’d love to hear from you and help with your path to B2B freelance success.

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Published: April 9, 2013

8 Responses to “Building Your Portfolio is Easier Than You Think”

  1. Thank you Lane, for this informative article. I do have a question (exposing myself as a "newbie"). If I write a sample for my portfolio using a company I chose at random online, am I allowed to use the company's name even though I did not do the work for them?

    Debi Hite

  2. Hi Lane, Congrats on getting out of the rat race!
    I too am looking for a way out of IT. I have over 25 years in the industry, but I did not choose IT as my niche. Was this a mistake? I know I can write, but having trouble seeing myself as an expert. Would you turn down something if it was not your area of expertise? Should I start out writing white papers or case studies for IT companies until I get some experience. Any advice you have would be greatly appreciated.
    Best Regards, Jon

    Jon eCash

  3. Hi Lane! I've published several news and feature stories. I'm interested in writing case studies and wanted to know where you received your training. Are you under contract to write other case stories (aka success stories)?

    Guest (Anne)

  4. Dear Lane, Is this advice for writing web copy? I know I can do this, wrote my own, MBA grad. What course is it that is specific to this field? I don't want to write sales copy.
    Thx. JB

    Guest (Easier than you think to build portf)

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