How I work
So you engaged a strange woman in a pith helmet to gallop all over your written materials. You like her stuff but you’re unsure of the copywriting process. What next?
1. CHIT CHAT AND BALLPARK QUOTE
We have a quick (under 10-minute) chat on the phone first to discuss your requirements: what you need; what’s causing pain and discomfort; your budget and timelines. I can usually give you some ballpark figures at this stage.
2. BRIEFING DOCUMENT
I send you full briefing document for you to fill out, which is a vital prerequisite of the copywriting process. This written brief will help you tease out some of the details of what you need to say: target audience, competitors, key messages, and unique selling points, plus any additional information I need to better understand your service. Why is it so important for this step to be written by you rather than by me during a long coffee date? See Point 4 of Unashamedly Creative’s great post here.
I also need to know who I’ll be working with. Do you approve my copy directly or are there multiple levels of approval within your organisation? Will I work with your web developer on the sitemap? Do you need me to recommend a good one? What is your budget? The more background detail I get from you, the better!
3. COPYWRITING PROPOSAL AND QUOTE
I then send you a proposal document. This outlines the workflow, agreed timelines, my Terms and Conditions, payment terms, any on-site meetings, and how well I’ve understood your brief. With the completed briefing document (Step 2) I also have enough information to send you a full quote.
4. FIRST INVOICE
When you approve both proposal and quote (Step 3) I’ll also send through an invoice. Please note that smaller jobs are invoiced in full and upfront and larger jobs are invoiced in two stages: 50% upfront and 50% after I submit your first draft (V1.0).
I can then book you into my workflow. I usually need about 2 weeks’ notice to book you in. Ask me about Rush Fees for any urgent copywriting jobs.
5. FIRST DRAFT
Once your first deposit is made, we’re good to go!
The first draft of website copy can take me up to 2 weeks to turn around, with many jobs on a faster turnaround. The quicker you can get your amends back to me during drafting, the quicker I can finish your copywriting project.
My process covers up to 3 drafts, with the final draft just for proofreading and final checks.
First version (V1.0) – I’ll write the first full draft of all pages. You and your team will then need to review, amend, and approve, using Track Changes.
6. FINAL INVOICE – LARGER JOBS
Once I email the first draft of the copy, I also send your final invoice. In accordance with my Terms and Conditions, this gives you 14 days to complete your amends.
7. SECOND DRAFT
Second version (V2.0) – I’ll make your amends and polish the copy. You will then need to review, amend, and approve. There should be no major structural changes at this stage.
8. FINAL DRAFT AND SUBMISSION
Final version (V3.0) – I’ll make the final tweaks, proofread, and submit via email. This is now ready to go live on your website, to print, and wherever good copy is seen!
Any versions past final draft?
If the briefing document is completed in full from the early stages of the project, then this step shouldn’t be necessary. Any extensive alts after final draft will be charged per hour at my studio rate of $120 PH (incl. GST).
I’m also happy to liaise with your developer or graphic designer regarding sitemaps and site architecture, any final copy tweaks after layout and so on. This would be charged on a case-by-case basis.
Just ask! Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.