Mom Maintains Six-Figure Copywriting Income – and Manages Son’s Music Career
You may not know the name Dalton Cyr yet, but there’s a good chance you will soon. The 14-year-old singer, songwriter, actor and recording artist has been performing since he was nearly 10.
As Dalton’s career grows hotter every day, he’s spending more time on tour and more time in Los Angeles for meetings and auditions. His parents join him on every trip; between the two of them, they spend 40 hours a week or more helping their son with his career.
The past summer had them criss-crossing the country multiple times, from their home in Jacksonville Beach, Florida to New England, the Midwest and LA. This bi-coastal life may be the new reality for the Cyrs, and the ability to take their jobs anywhere has been essential to Dalton’s career. Cindy works as a freelance marketing strategist and copywriter and her husband, Frank, is employed full time but works remotely.
“Honestly, I don’t think Dalton would be doing what he’s doing right now if we couldn’t go with him because it would just be too much time apart,” said his mom, Cindy. “In June, we were told we really needed to spend more time in LA. Not many people could move as fast as we did and keep their jobs.”
In a typical week, Cindy accompanies Dalton to numerous meetings and auditions during the workday. But despite the hectic, irregular schedule, she still earns an impressive six figures annually.
“I Was Really Angry”
Cindy always enjoyed writing, but like many, put writing dreams aside believing that you can’t make money at it.
“I didn’t know what a copywriter was,” she recalled. “If I had known, I would have done this so much sooner. I always loved to write but thought the only opportunity was writing books or working for newspapers.”
Instead, Cindy had gone into sales and advertising, where she ended up doing some copywriting for clients’ ads – though she didn’t know what it was called at the time. In 2007, Cindy was the top advertising salesperson for a magazine. She did well but didn’t have much flexibility.
The real motivation to make a career change came when Cindy’s sister was diagnosed with stage four colon cancer. Though Cindy could perform much of her job over email and phone, her boss wouldn’t let her take time off to be with her sister.
“My employer wouldn’t let me have a week of unpaid leave,” she said. “I was really angry about it. I didn’t want to be in that situation again where someone was dictating that I can’t go when it’s really important.”
The Missing Piece: Getting Clients
A month after her sister became ill, Cindy took the first step toward a more flexible career by signing up for AWAI’s Accelerated Program for Six-Figure Copywriting. She had tried another, well-known copywriting program previously but returned the course because it was too overwhelming.
“AWAI’s Accelerated Program really took me through all the steps and was so comprehensive,” Cindy said. “Another program I took was just on how to write better copy. AWAI provided the missing piece of how to get clients.”
On the heels of the Accelerated Program, Cindy invested her tax return in an AWAI email copywriting workshop, which gave her much-needed confidence to move forward.
“We wrote a lot at the conference and got great feedback, which made me believe I can do this. I came back and got a client right away,” she said.
The combination of programs, and Cindy’s dedication, got her career off the ground in a short time.
“I give a lot of credit to the combination of live AWAI programs where I had to show up every week and having a real person to ask questions,” Cindy said. “Within about five months, I quit my job and went 100 percent into freelancing.”
Copy that Boosts Member Rates by 100%
By diligently applying the marketing techniques she learned in the programs, Cindy steadily built her business. Her first freelance gig: crafting promotional emails for a local retail shop.
As she gained confidence, she brought on more prestigious clients. At Dan Kennedy’s Business of Copywriting Academy, through AWAI, she met a business owner who needed a copywriter. He hired her, and based on stellar results, referred her to Glazer Kennedy Insider’s Circle (GKIC), one of the leading direct response copywriting organizations around. Another major copywriting milestone was writing for the famous author and motivational speaker, Zig Ziglar.
Today, Cindy works primarily with info-marketers and small businesses. To find clients, she searched for companies in her target categories, mailed 20 letters a week and followed up with all of them. A key was offering a 15-minute consultation that was guaranteed to add money to their bottom line.
Time after time, clients have found Cindy’s work does boost response and revenue. Zig Ziglar achieved a 100 percent increase in members and a 27 percent improved retention rate. GKIC has doubled its open rate and tripled its click-through rate, consistently exceeding budget goals on weekly offers.
Six Figures, Plus a Flexible Schedule
The move to copywriting was all about freedom for Cindy, and freedom she has found. Early on she was able to attend every activity that her active sons were in, including basketball, theater, karate and music. She took morning bike rides along Jacksonville Beach, napped more, drove less, ate better, and had more time for family and friends. Most important, she doesn’t have to ask for time off for family events or vacations.
At the same time, Cindy upped her income to its highest level ever. It took a couple of years to reach the six-figure mark, and from there she kept raising – and meeting – her income goals.
Today, she still makes six figures annually even as she helps her sons. She attended a four-day young entrepreneurs event with her older son, who is in college. He ended up winning the challenge there and a one-week trip to another entrepreneur event.
And Cindy is grateful for the flexibility she has to help Dalton nurture his career, from accompanying him around the country to teaching him how to market himself to writing publicity materials for him. She brings many of the principles of success learned in her own career to help Dalton: persistence, continuous improvement, goal-setting and implementation.
“It’s amazing to be in a position to support my kids’ dreams this way, which is something I couldn’t do in the job I had before,” she said. “Right now I’m spending more time on my son’s business than my own. If I had not gotten into AWAI I would not have had that opportunity.”
Cindy’s Tips For Copywriters
- Don’t be afraid to market yourself – “If you’re going to look for a job, you send your resume and follow up,” she said. “It’s the same in copywriting. You can’t sit there and think people will come find you. You have to put yourself out there. AWAI teaches you how to do it.”
- Pick a niche, or two – Cindy tried out 4-5 niches before narrowing the list to her core interest of info-marketers. Choosing a niche makes you the go-to person for that type of writing. “Huge changes happened in my business,” she said.
- Offer clients packages – Cindy offers clients’ various types of agreements for working with her, from one-time assignments to 12-month contracts. Clients pay a much higher fee for one-time work than for the package. The longer-term engagements give her predictable income and give clients a dedicated writer and marketing strategist to get real results.
Ready to pursue your own definition of success?
Learn more about the program that kicked off Cindy’s career,
The Accelerated Program for Six-Figure Copywriting.
“AWAI’s Accelerated Program really took me through all the steps and was so comprehensive. Another program I took was just on how to write better copy. AWAI provided the missing piece of how to get clients.”
Jacksonville Beach, Florida
Direct sales and advertising
After sending out targeted letters, she landed an assignment writing promotional emails for a local retail shop.
- The Accelerated Program for Six-Figure Copywriting
- Email writing workshop
- Circle of Success