Here I’ll discuss how to test your copywriting skills before dipping your feet into real work.
You’ve bought all the copywriting training materials from the best copywriters. You’ve even gone ahead to practice because you’ve been told that practice makes perfect. Is that even enough? How do you convince a client that you can write their copy without any portfolio to show? If this is you, then you’re in the right place.
What Makes Good Copy?
Before you start looking for clients, you want to make sure that your copy makes the cut. Here are the criteria to evaluate a good copywriter.
Good Copy Is Informative
Your copy should inform the audience of something they don’t know already. You should go over and beyond when researching so that the readers learn something new from the content. Otherwise, you will be just like any other wannabe copywriter out there who patches together content from different blogs.
Research is paramount in copywriting. As copywriters, we are 80 percent researchers, and only 20 percent writers. Truth is, there is nothing new you will write about that isn’t known already. Proper research ensures that you look for new information or different angles regarding a topic.
One tip that can help with this is looking beyond the first three blogs that rank for the topic or keyword.
Copy Should Flow Naturally
Content writing is like starting a journey. As a no-brainer, it should have a start and an end. You want to make sure that you flow with whatever topic you want to write about. Don’t confuse the readers by taking them from one point to another. Having an outline can help you write down your points in a coherent manner.
Copy Should Be Easy to Read
Copy aims at promoting something and not teaching your readers new jargon. Who wants to read copy while referring to a dictionary anyway? Aim at skillfully presenting your thoughts. Readable content should have short sentences, short paragraphs, and bulleted points.
Good Copy Is Action-Oriented
You want to make sure that you ask your readers to do something at the end of the reading. A call to action could be asking the reader to subscribe to your Youtube channel or subscribe to the monthly newsletter. Ensure that the copy is action-oriented otherwise, it ceases to accomplish its goal.
Copy Is Compelling
As a copywriter, you should be convincing enough that your readers are convinced to take action. At the end of the day, you want to promote or sell something. If your copy is compelling, you should see the targeted results.
You can test out your copy for instance by sending a few emails before sending to all the emails in your list. Create a call to action and see how many of them respond. If none does, then your copy isn’t compelling enough and you need to get back to the drawing board.
Tips to Help You Test Your Copywriting Skills
Probably your copy already ticks the box for each of the above criteria. Now, you need a platform to test your skills. Here are some tips.
Offer to Help Local Businesses
Whichever part of the world you live in, there is a local business struggling to market its products or services. Approach the business owner or the head of the marketing team and request if you could help them. Chances are that they will accept your help and you could also land a part-time job if they see the results.
You could create sales emails. You could also revamp the business website using web copy. As we all know, people are now spending more time online and social media is the hangout. Social media posts and ads can do wonders especially if the business sells products that resonate with Millenials.
After all is said and done, you want to make sure to track the results. Google Analytics is a great tool that can help you with tracking. With GA, you can determine which channel generates better results and advise the business accordingly.
You can also leverage a tool like Wynter that will help you test how good your copy is. You only need to upload the URL of the web copy or an image of the email copy you want to send. The tool will then prompt you to enter your ideal audience. The test copy will reach your target audience and you will get notified of their reaction within 1-2 business days.
Promote Charity Events
Now and then, there are charity events going on in our neighborhoods. The organizers would appreciate it if you offered to promote the event. Charity events aim at getting as many contributions as they can. Your copy can compel people to take action which in this case is to donate towards the goal of the charity event.
You can promote such an event using social media ads, email etc. The evidence of success in this specific case is more contributions. You can compare notes with the event organizers so that you can determine if your help has yielded better results than what they achieve other times.
Help Family and Friends
In your circle of friends and relatives, there is always the one who has a website. Seasoned copywriters charge an arm and a leg, offering to help your friend can come in handy. With such an opportunity, give your best to write web copies such as landing pages. Also, go ahead and create an email list and schedule some emails to send out at different times.
The good thing with friends and relatives is that you can track the results over time. Google Analytics or Screaming Frog are some of the tools you can use to track the results. You can later use your friend’s website as a portfolio when a real client comes your way which is a win-win situation.
There are many places where other copywriters hang out such as Facebook groups, Reddit sub-groups, or Linkedin groups. Join groups where peers help each other to critique copy. Ensure to read the rules of each group or you could risk getting blocked.
Having your peers’ critique your copy could help you identify the areas that need improvement and those that you have perfected.
The Bottom Line
Ideal clients want to be sure that you can deliver results. Without a good portfolio, it’s almost impossible to land well-paying deals. Now, you have to go out there and test your copywriting skills. This guide offers useful tips you can utilize. Did you find this informative? Share with us your experiences in the comment section.