A Postgame Analysis Can Improve Everything You Write

This week I’m showing you how you can take cues from pro athletes to improve your copywriting business.

As I said yesterday, after putting forth your best effort and earning a new “personal record” for a writing assignment, your job isn’t over yet. With one more easy step, you can make sure your next assignment goes even better.

Something that nearly every runner does after a race is a postgame analysis. This is an opportunity to go over his or her performance to see what went right, what didn’t, and what can be improved on for next time.

This isn’t just an exercise for when things go wrong. Athletes do this whether they win, lose, or draw. I do a postgame analysis every time I run a race and after each copywriting assignment I hand in.

A simple way to perform a postgame analysis is to ask yourself two questions:

  1. What worked well?
  2. What can I improve on?

I recently wrote a brochure for a client. After the copy was done and the client signed off on it, I asked for one of the printed brochures. Seeing my work all put together with the client’s images gave me a new perspective on the project. Though I was happy with the overall content, I found a section that could be improved. The next time I write a brochure, I’ll use this experience to make it even better.

Be honest during your analysis … you’re not trying to beat yourself down here. You just want to discover how you can do better next time.

Each time you hand in a writing assignment to your client, you can enlist their help in your postgame analysis by asking for feedback.

You may get this as a request for revisions, or they may just tell you what they like or don’t like about your piece. After you hand in the first assignment for a client, spend some time scrutinizing everything they say.

Note what your client says about the tone, the length, and even the format of your piece. That way, you can incorporate any suggestions into your next assignment. The more you can do to please your client, the more likely you are to be hired again.

If your client doesn’t like your first draft, don’t take it personally. Use it as a learning opportunity! Ask them what they would like to see instead, and get examples if they have them.

When you take their suggestions to heart, really strive to do your best on every assignment, and are easy to work with, your client will want to work with you again.

A good postgame analysis is vital to growing your copywriting business. It will help you keep improving your writing, keep your clients happy, and will keep them coming back for more. If you have any questions or comments feel free to post them here.

Tomorrow, join me back here to take the final step to a better copywriting business.

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The Professional Writers’ Alliance

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Published: November 28, 2013

2 Responses to “A Postgame Analysis Can Improve Everything You Write”

  1. I think the point about seeing your work in a different format is really important. I find that even using a different printer (almost out of ink vs. lots of ink) makes a significant difference, and of course print vs. on-screen makes a huge difference.

    Guest (Margaret E)

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