Before we dive in today, I have two important reminders for you …
$95 and a computer are all you need to get started as a Desktop Marketer. On Tuesday, you heard about Kammy Thurman, who runs her successful desktop marketing business from her home in Laurel, Montana.
“This is a perfect niche for new writers who don’t have samples,” says Kammy. “In 10 years, I’ve never once been asked for samples. When they call to find out more, they already intend to work with me.”
Kammy combines her copywriting skills with desktop marketing services to offer local businesses a one-stop shop for all their marketing needs. There’s more from Kammy below … including 4 great ways you can get started.
But before we get to that, I want to remind you about the special deal we have until midnight tonight.
If you’re looking for some extra spare-time cash … to become, like Kammy, a “one-stop-marketing-agency” for your copywriting clients … or for a brand-new career altogether, now’s the time to give Desktop Marketing a try … while you can do it for less than $100.
AWAI’s Desktop Marketing program gives you everything you need to build a successful freelance career as a desktop marketer.
Another exciting program update to report … and more savings! AWAI’s Secrets of Writing for the Self-Help Market program has been revised and updated for 2010 and beyond.
Now you can learn how to write copy that converts for companies such as Nightingale-Conant, Learning Strategies, Rodale Press, and more.
And for a limited time, you can save 50% off the full price – that’s a savings of $199!
If you’re thinking the self-help industry is for you, take advantage of this special offer now.
AWAI Member Roy Furr is having great success in the self-help industry. “As a copywriter doing work in the self-help niche, I get daily and weekly emails from dozens of publishers about new and existing products, plus newsletters and other information. It's where they've shifted because it's what works for their business.
“And with all this content going out, there are a lot of writers collecting a lot of checks to write online copy for this industry – everything from banner ads and emails to long copy sales letters. For a copywriter who's willing to stand up and ask the world to take notice, there's plenty of opportunity in this space, and there will be for years to come.”
Just Announced: You can now access all AWAI’s online programs from your E-Book Reader! We’ve been receiving an increasingly large number of requests over the past few months for this change, so we figured it was time we answered the call!
As of this week, you can now read your programs using your own personal e-book reader … AND you can print the online version of the program from home.
So now, however you prefer to learn – reading it in print, online, or from your ebook reader – the choice is yours! (Read the full press release here.)
“Thank you so much, AWAI!” enthuses Ann Jordan-Mills, an AWAI Member and Freelance Copywriter who was one of the members suggesting AWAI make the switch earlier this year. “I take my E-book Reader everywhere I go,” continued Ann. “I read it while I’m waiting for appointments; I take it on the plane and in the car. In fact, any time I have a few spare minutes, out comes my E-book Reader! I’m totally thrilled that I can now take my copywriting courses along with me, too. It only makes good sense for the best use of my time.”
And, in an effort to further reduce AWAI’s environmental footprint … beginning very soon, we’ll be making the switch to high-quality, PFC and Green Seal certified recycled paper for our printed programs.
We’re happy to be doing our part, and I’d like to personally thank everyone who has helped make these two valuable changes possible.
“I have 13 copy projects sitting on my desk right this minute. I need to hire a copywriter!” That’s the urgent message financial consultant Dennis Tubbergen asked me to pass along to you … with the added note that he’s open to working remotely with the right person. (So you don’t have to live in Grand Rapids.)
From Dennis: Financial copywriter wanted. Direct-marketing firm in the financial industry seeks successful copywriter for full-time employment/engagement. Qualified candidate would have a successful background and track record in direct-response copywriting and have a portfolio of past work to demonstrate qualifications. Pay commensurate with experience. Base pay plus incentives based on revenue that copy generates. Please send a resume along with at least 2 samples of prior work to Dennis Tubbergen, 50 Louis NW, Suite 400, Grand Rapids, MI 49503.
GNC, a leading retailer of vitamins and nutritional supplements, is looking a copywriter and a graphic designer. Get the details here.
Wanted: Electronics blog writer for Consumer Reports in New York City. Are you a self-described techno-geek, always ahead of the curve? Do you have experience blogging? Think you can translate technical information and jargon into compelling content that average consumers can understand (and will respond to)?
If so, you may be a good fit for this position with Consumer Reports. They need someone to create consumer electronics content, and are looking for a writer with two years of experience covering consumer technology in an online setting. Experience with online video and social networking tools is a plus. (We’ve talked about these two skills often in Inside AWAI.)
Get more information on the position or apply here.
More jobs updates here.
How do you celebrate your victories … big and small? Ed Gandia started this conversation in Tuesday’s issue of The Writer’s Life, and a lot of folks have been joining in. Greg Nelson, for example, wrote in to say, “My goal is to land my first client in the B2B market by August 2010. And, to celebrate, my wife and I will open a bottle of 2003 Jarvis wine, which I have been saving for such a special occasion.”
$10K Challenge Winner Pat McCord also responded about her own celebrations and added: “I think it's terribly important to celebrate everything, each tiny victory, whether you do it with wine or something else.”
It’s never too soon to start planning your next celebration. So tell us … what’s your next goal and how are you going to celebrate when you achieve it? Send me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll celebrate with you!
Did you see this news story? Warren Buffett recently gave another $1.6 billion to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, bringing his total gifts to the foundation to over $8 billion.
The Gates Foundation is just one of over 75,000 foundations that give away billions of dollars every year. That’s in addition to the over $500 billion given away by government programs. If a worthy organization needs money for a cause, most likely there’s a foundation or program willing to give it.
Matching organizations that need money to the funders who are giving away those billions can be profitable, rewarding, and fun. (And it's a great way to use the persuasion skills you're developing now … without having to write long sales letters!)
But to be a part of this "funding bonanza," you need to know the simple secrets to writing successful grant proposals.
And that's where 30-year grant writing veteran Toni Rockis and AWAI's exciting new (and very popular) grant writing program come in. In the program, Toni gives you everything you need to launch your very own successful grant writing career – including dozens of secrets she's used to win $65 million for her clients over the years.
“Is there copywriting work out there?” I hear this question often, especially from new writers. The answer is an emphatic “yes!” In fact, the work is seemingly everywhere.
AWAI co-founder Don Mahoney recently sent me the example of a website that obviously had a copywriter involved. Don’s been studying fire sprinkler systems as he restores the Andrew Mann Inn, an 18th-century home in upstate New York. And while doing his research, this site ( www.firesprinklersystemsinfo.com) jumped out at him.
Don says, “In a world filled with standard material … you can tell from the first lines how this site gets attention.”
Pam Foster, author of AWAI’s Site Audits Made Simple, points out that with more than a trillion Web pages out there, it’s a challenge for any company to get noticed online. So every website can be a potential client for you.
Pam suggests asking website owners four basic questions to open the door to new business:
What does your company do (if it isn’t obvious)?
How’s business in today’s economic climate?
What are the company’s big challenges now? And the biggest one … ?
Is your website generating enough business for you?
This last question is brilliant. Because, more often than not, the response is something like, “No, it’s not, and we can’t figure out why.” And chances are, it has something to do with their Web copy. That’s where you come in, the professional copywriter.
So, yes! There most definitely is work out there.
Learn how to convert website owners to clients like Pam does here.
#3 on Google … out of 3,560,000 results … thanks to Site Audits Made Simple and How to Write a Money-Making Website!
“While I purchased Site Audits Made Simple and How to Write a Money-Making Website a few months ago, I have to admit that I didn’t really study them until the beginning of June,” writes Sara Chute.
“I started with the Site Audit program. Within a few pages, it had definitely caught my interest. Not only was it clear and concise, but those checklists are an incredible resource for keeping on track and making sure you have all the elements under consideration when coming up with a final analysis. Never being one to just read something, I decided to take a look at some of my own websites. Much as I don’t really want to admit this, they didn’t stack up very well. Hmmm …
“So I switched to Nick Usborne’s Money-Making Website program. It immediately became clear that I had put the cart before the horse when designing my first website. I hadn’t done any research, simply put a bunch of ‘stuff’ that interested me together. I didn’t know a thing about keywords and tracking and all those kinds of things, so, again, my site was lacking. But where do you start to improve the situation? And would it REALLY work?
“Back to Site Audits, and the lovely checklists. By this time, I had come to the conclusion that my original website was too huge to work on at this point in time. So I decided an experiment was in order.”
“At the end of a long day at work, I love to knit little baby socks,” explains Sara. “It’s great for relaxing and simply clearing my head. But my grand-daughters have gotten too big for them, and now I have this box of wonderful little socks … and no one to give them to. So, even though I had really absorbed only half of the Site Audit program (and just the first few chapters of Money-Making Websites), I decided to put up a new site with the knowledge that I had gained so far. Let’s see if this really does work!”
“Wool Baby Socks http://www.woolbabysocks.com was completed on June 15th.
“In just two weeks, the website is already showing up as #2 or #3 on Google for the keyphrase “knit socks.” And that’s out of about 3,560,000 results!!
“And that’s without paying a cent. It does that for several other keywords as well. Which is really nice.”
Next week … Sara creates Web magic for a friend. Stay tuned to find out how …
“Your big opportunity may be right where you are now,” said Napoleon Hill, author of one of the most influential motivational books of all time, Think and Grow Rich. AWAI member Kammy Thurman has taken his words quite literally.
Kammy has built her copywriting and desktop marketing business in the small town of Laurel, Montana. She says focusing on local business is fun. You get to meet great people, and your business grows faster than it would if all you do is hope and wait for work with the “big guys” right out of the gate. Local clients also tend to be very loyal.
Here are four quick ideas from Kammy to help you build your business starting in your own backyard:
- Get involved with your local Chamber of Commerce. It’s a great way to network with businesses that may need your services.
- Find businesses that are advertising in the Yellow Pages. (Surprisingly, a lot of them still are.) Especially the ones that have spent money on big, colorful ads. These are great potential clients, because they understand the value of marketing but may not realize that direct-response advertising can give them a much better return on investment.
- Talk to local ad agencies and marketing firms. If your small town doesn’t have any, check the nearest bigger city. These firms may have sporadic projects and occasional busy times their in-house staff can’t handle. If you’re flexible and can work under tight deadlines, you could become their go-to person.
- Once you’ve gotten a few local jobs under your belt, send press releases to local papers. It could lead to a feature article on the front page of the local business section … great exposure and credibility!
AWAI’s Desktop Marketing program gives you everything you need to build a successful freelance career as a desktop marketer.
Even if your clients are targeting only local customers, you still have to help those customers find them online. Since most people rely more on search engines than telephone books to find what they’re looking for these days, it’s important for your local clients to have an online presence. It’s estimated that 40% of the 10 billion unique searches done in the U.S. each month are for local services, businesses, and products.
So go beyond your copywriting services and show your clients how to establish their local online listings, and you’ll start to position yourself as a strategic partner.
Dev Basu, an expert in local SEO, gave some simple tips in Web Marketing Today recently.
There are three main business centers where you’ll want to register a business listing online, he said: Google Local Business Center, Bing, and Yahoo. Sign your client up as a user at each one, and complete a profile. And make sure you maintain a consistent format at all three for your client’s name, address, and phone. Complete the profile as comprehensively as possible, filling in all fields, including a keyword-rich business description. Use a local phone number rather than a toll-free number for additional local search engine ranking power. Upload or link to as many business images and videos as possible.
Follow these steps, and your client will have the basics covered for local online business listings.
A new take on breaking into copywriting … James Chartrand is the pen name of a thirty-something copywriter, problogger, online entrepreneur and the owner of Men with Pens who is well known for – in James’ words – “helping small businesses go from ho-hum to smokin’ hot in a short amount of time.”
And on July 15 th Rebecca Matter will sit down to interview James during an exclusive Wealthy Web Writer teleconference to discover how James got started as a copywriter, how she positioned herself online using a pseudonym and blog to build her business … yes, James is a she … and her advice to online copywriters starting out in the industry.
As with all Wealthy Web Writer events that take place each week, this teleconference is FREE for Platinum Members. Get all the details here.
Wealthy Web Writer Members love the free webinars! Says Platinum Member Lexi Rodrigo from Ontario …
“I’m a member of a number of membership sites. The Wealthy Web Writer delivers more than most membership sites out there. Some membership sites only have one webinar or teleseminar a month. But, we have a least one a week —- sometimes we have two in one week!”
What would you like to learn about? Wealthy Web Writer is in search of new event topics to cover in August. We want to hear from you! What topic do YOU want to learn more about and who do YOU want to hear from?
Member feedback to Rachel Karl’s article in Monday’s issue of The Golden Thread – PTA, Mimosas, and Yoga: Confessions of a Work-at-Home Copywriting Mom :
- “Excellent. I think I have fallen in love with Rachel Karl as she has renewed a spark in me to try again after having ‘thrown over’ the idea of being a copywriter. Thank you Rachel.” – William
- “Excellent. Very Timely. Possibly the best encouragement I could have received.” – Scott
- “I found Rachael Karl’s story unbelievable! Note: I didn’t say impossible! Either there is something she forgot to tell us or a whole paragraph went ‘missing.’ Here’s why? She started on AWAI’s program in April 2009 – and later that same month, her direct-mail sales letter went out. WOW! I’m spell-bound. Two weeks later (presumably still in April 2009), she landed her first client. Amazing! Her first project earned her $20,000 … a newbie? I find something’s not adding up. It’s all well and good to inspire and encourage us to move faster but … at that speed?! Her story leads me to question: What is the minimum time that an average ‘joe’ can take to be financially independent?” – Ali
- “Pretty Good. What is Mimosas?”
And, more from Rachel:
“What great responses! Thank you to everyone for taking the time to read the article and for asking such great questions. In particular, Ali wanted to know if there was anything missing from my story because my results were a little too fast to be believable. Well, here’s what I left out of the article …
“The truth is, I write a plan for every goal. But here’s the KEY. In my plan, I set a deadline for accomplishing each step, and I treat my own deadlines just like I would a client’s. I break down each goal into tiny steps that are easily accomplished each day.
“For example … Tuesday: Write first draft of direct-mail sales letter using the tools in AWAI’s Accelerated Program for Six-Figure Copywriting. Wednesday: Edit sales letter and show second draft to 5 people for input. Thursday: Polish up final version of sales letter and print out 500 copies. Friday: Grab kids, friends, spouse, etc., and stuff label and seal sales letters. Saturday: Go to the post office and drop off sales letters. Cross fingers and wait impatiently.
“I hope that helps! Oh! and ‘Mimosas’ are orange juice and Champagne, drinks that people have with breakfast – yum :)”
Writing Challenge Reminder: “My Best Summer Job”
One winner will be selected from all entries received. If it’s you, you’ll receive a $100 American Express gift card and have your essay published on the AWAI website.
Deadline: Sunday, July 18, 2010
More details here.
“It’s kind of scary what happens when you open yourself up to new opportunities. :),” writes AWAI member and graphic designer Mike Klassen.
“Next April I will be part of a 3-day conference for businesses and entrepreneurs … IN AUSTRALIA!!
“That talk will focus on helping businesses to leverage their content or ‘intellectual capital.’ That part kind of amazes me because when I first started out, I had thought of myself as ‘just’ a designer. But (and copywriters probably know this too) as you work on projects for clients, your thinking and experience expands and creates unplanned opportunities to branch into different areas and speak on topics like this.
“I’ve got a list of over two-dozen different uses for content so it can benefit a business beyond it’s original purpose. Nothing fancy … just stuff that most small business people wouldn’t automatically think of.”
“Here’s the short version of how it came about:
“My son has wanted to move to Australia and work at the Australia Zoo. He loves animals and wants that to be his life’s work. So we had planned to go visit Australia next year.
“Someone came to my website a few months back and downloaded my free book on magalog marketing. I saw that he was from Australia. We exchanged some e-mails and I learned he’s an author, entrepreneur and public speaker, doing lots of conferences for other entrepreneurs. He knew that we were planning a vacation and suggested we time it to coincide with one of his conferences so that I could speak.
“Everything has fallen into place … and I’m going to be one of the featured speakers!
“it’s always exciting to look back at when I first cracked open an AWAI program, knowing nothing, and seeing where it’s taken me today. The freedom to take advantage of opportunities like this and wonder what new directions it might push me into … It blows me away.”
As Executive Director of AWAI, Katie Yeakle has been helping people live the writer’s life since 1997.
“AWAI is built on a big promise … that we can teach you a new skill that can lead to increased income … independence from the 9-to-5 grind … and the freedom to live and work where you choose.
“All of us at AWAI stand behind that promise. In fact, that’s how we measure our success – by how many people we help reinvent their lives.
“Follow our proven advice, and you can be among the many successes we’re so proud of.”
- Have a question or comment for me or any of us at AWAI? Send it here: email@example.com
- Follow me on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/katieyeakle