Meet Your Ideal Client in Two Weeks …

Two weeks and four days.

Doesn’t seem that close, does it? But it is. In just a little over two weeks, you could be walking through the doors of the Marriott Ballroom into the …

 … AWAI 2013 Job Fair.

Exciting, isn’t it?

(Not sure about attending Bootcamp? Keep reading and I know you’ll see a good reason to be in Delray with the rest of us.)

AWAI is always searching for new ways to make it easier for you to find clients — whether you’re an experienced copywriter or just starting out. That’s what Job Fair is all about. Finding clients.

These are not just any clients. These are your dream clients … who offer steady, high-paying work that interests you. Who’s going to be there? Forty companies as of today including (are you ready for this?) …

 … Oxford Club

 … MoneyWeek UK

 … International Living

 … Stansberry and Associates

 … Wellness Consulting (Dr. Sears)

 … Newsmax Media

 … Plus, almost three dozen more potential clients!

Want to learn more about Job Fair and what it has in store for you? And why it could be the most important 2 hours of your copywriting career? CLICK HERE.

So when you do walk into Job Fair, you want to be ready to make a lasting good impression on these marketers.

That’s your intention. But how do you get there?

It’s really not hard at all … with just a tiny bit of pre-planning.

So let me walk through what you need to do to get the most out of your Job Fair experience.

Success begins with head start opportunities at home …

As I write this, there are 22 Job Fair Spec Challenges you can work on at home. These are 22 opportunities for you to get a head start with clients you want to impress. CLICK HERE to see what’s waiting for you.

There will be more Specs at Job Fair. But these home Spec Challenges will arm you with a copywriter’s greatest weapons for success: Information. Knowledge. And ideas. (Spec success hint: Do NOT try to do them all. Pick 2 or 3 and do a great job.)

When it comes time to speak with a marketer from one of these firms, you’ll sound like someone who’s done your homework. Someone who’s eager to succeed as a copywriter. Someone who wants to write for them.

Don’t wait. Time is running short. Go to the AWAI Bootcamp website and start researching right now.

First impressions really do count …

Delray Beach in October is warm, comfortable, informal. People walk around in shorts and T-shirts day and night.

But not at Job Fair. Your goal is to signal that you’re serious about meeting marketers there, serious about making a good first impression.

“Business casual” is the mode of the day. No shorts or raggedy Levi’s. Instead, wear something ‘smart’ that makes you feel confident and good about yourself (yet comfortable!).

Make the most of your time …

Before even starting your interviews with the Job Fair marketers, make a plan of attack. Decide which marketers you really would like to work for. If you’re passionate about alternative health but the financial niche bores you, don’t waste your time interviewing with reps from the financial niche. Forget all your “just in case” justifications. If you’re not passionate about the niche, it’ll show in your writing.

Once you’ve decided who you’ll meet with, approach them with confidence. Extend your hand for a handshake and introduce yourself. (Avoid hand-crushing squeezes, please.)

If your voice shakes from nerves, don’t sweat it. The marketers expect you’ll be nervous. They’re trying to find copywriters, not public speakers. However, starting the conversation with something you know — your name — helps ease your nerves.

Will they want a resume? A business card? A sample of your work? It varies from company to company. Be prepared to offer all three if asked, but have a hassle-free system for quickly getting exactly what they want.

One system I’ve seen work is to have a business card, a resume, and work samples clipped together with a small binder clip. If you’re asked for just one or two of the items, they’re all there. Unclip what you’re asked for and slip the rest back into your briefcase, bag, or backpack.

(Backpack? Is that professional enough? If it works for John Forde, it’ll work for you. And remember, even if you don’t have any of those materials available, Job Fair is still your chance to meet marketers and learn about opportunities.)

It’s all about you (sort of) …

Your visits with Job Fair marketers truly are about you … but only as it relates to you as a copywriter.

The representatives will describe their company and their products. If they’re offering a Spec, they may discuss that. At some point, though, they’ll ask about you. This is your chance to talk to them about your experience as a copywriter even if you’re just starting out. After all, you’re learning from the best — AWAI. Then tell them what you’re learning from AWAI. And your passion for what they do. (Briefly!)

This is not the time to talk about the challenges you’ve faced trying to start your new career. Or why you weren’t able to have your business cards exactly how you wanted them. Or about your sick aunt.

This is also not the time to tell them that you’ve seen their current promotion and think it stinks. Don’t even hint at it. If you’ve seen one of their promos, say something like, “I saw your Blue Danube package. I’d love to have the opportunity to show you what I can do for a similar promotion.”

Learn from my 7th and 8th graders …

Take a page from what I tell the kids I tutor. I tell them, “Never say ‘I can’t.’ Never say ‘I’m not very good.’” Replace those words with “I’m still learning all the finer points of [you fill in the blank]. But I’m confident I can …”

The lasting impression you want to leave as you walk away is one of a professional copywriter, eager to work for them.

The one, immutable secret of Job Fair Spec success …

At Bootcamp, Katie will tell you exactly what I’m going to right now. It doesn’t matter how good you are as a copywriter, you’ll never win a Spec assignment if you don’t do one thing …

 … Write and submit the Spec!

It’s amazing how many people go to Job Fair who don’t submit. There’s no way you can win … if you don’t submit.

Until I see you at Bootcamp, keep writing!

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

At last, a professional organization that caters to the needs of direct-response industry writers. Find out how membership can change the course of your career. Learn More »

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Published: October 7, 2013

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