The Secret to Becoming a Copywriter
Time flies when you’re having fun.
A cliché, I know. And I advise you, my fellow copywriters, to avoid using clichés. But this cliché fits how I feel perfectly.
I’ve been writing The Golden Thread for over four years, and it barely feels like I’ve started. Now, after those fast-flowing years, I’m saying good-bye to my Golden Thread readers.
But I’m not going away. In fact, I’ll be writing more often. I’m leaving The Golden Thread to slide over to The Writer’s Life, where I’ll be writing three times a week (sometimes more, sometimes less). I hope you’ll join me there. The Writer’s Life is one of AWAI’s flagship daily e-letters, where we share insights, tips and guidance on helping people achieve their lifelong goals of living the writer’s life. If you aren’t already a regular reader of The Writer’s Life, please sign up here.
As for The Golden Thread, Sandy Franks, former publisher for Agora, Inc. (now the largest privately owned newsletter publishing and marketing behemoth), will be taking over the helm for me, and I’m honored to have such a knowledgeable marketer follow me.
But before I switch, I’m going to leave you with a message I feel is the most important I can give you. It’s about the most essential strategy for success …
Believe in yourself!
Let me explain by telling a story from a very successful AWAI member, Nan Hughes.
Nan had just started learning the secrets of copywriting from AWAI when I met her. But even though she was brand-new to this career, she was – without a doubt – a copywriter.
How did I know? Because the most important person in the world of copywriting told her so. That person was her.
Let me explain.
I met Nan along with a number of other people who wanted to become copywriters at an AWAI training event several years ago. I started out asking them what they did and why they were there.
They all gave similar reasons … something like: “It’s time for me to do what I need to do so I can become a copywriter.”
You have to admire those participants for making the commitment of their time to learn the secrets of writing compelling direct-marketing copy.
You also have to admire their honesty in admitting they had let other things get in their way of attaining copywriting success.
However, when they first stood up and introduced themselves, only one of them was what I would call a copywriter … Nan.
But they all left the event two and a half days later as real copywriters. Not because of what they had learned … as good as it was.
What made such a big difference in such a short amount of time? They said out loud what Nan had said in the beginning. They acknowledged to themselves and the world that they were copywriters.
Here’s how AWAI member Penny Hunt put the same statement of self-belief in an email:
While walking to my car with my husband about two weeks ago, I asked him, “At what point do you think I can leave my job and really become this copywriter thing?”
He stopped and looked at me and said, “As soon as you stop calling it ‘this copywriter thing.’”
The biggest thing I took away from this interaction was to TAKE ACTION. Stop calling yourself something else. Start calling yourself a copywriter, and that starts the story for you.
The same goes for you. You will always and forever be in a state of “becoming a copywriter” until you tell yourself you are one.
Until you believe in yourself.
Let me end with a quote from Henry Ford …
“Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you are surely right.”
From this moment on, think you can. Believe in yourself … and take the steps you need to take to succeed. Once you do, you can confidently say out loud …
“I am a copywriter!”
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