Year: 2015

Have you heard the joke about the Port Melbourne Copywriter?

Port Melbourne CopywriterNever mind, it’s pointless…

But getting a Port Melbourne copywriter to power up your business isn’t…

Good copy can take your business further. How? By ensuring that it answers the questions your customers need.

A copywriter can bring ‘process’ to your business proposition – and address the questions you often miss. Think you know everything about your product or service offering?

Try asking yourself these 15 questions about your product or service:

  1. What does it do/deliver?
  2. What relevant facts, statistics or specifications should be known about it?
  3. What problem does it solve?
  4. What is new, different, better or unique about it?
  5. What can never be said or promised about it?
  6. Who is your competition and what are they saying about it?
  7. Is there a special history or unique story around it?
  8. What do people need to do to access it?
  9. How does it address people’s biggest concerns or fears?
  10. How will it help people get ahead or keep from falling behind?
  11. What desire does it appeal to?
  12. Has it been endorsed or received media coverage?
  13. What information or legals must be included to sell it?
  14. Does it have a guarantee and what are those terms?
  15. Do people want it?

If you haven’t considered these questions about your product or service offering, you may be missing the point – and missing customers.

Want to learn more about working with a Port Melbourne copywriter? Call The Freelance Pencil on 0418 530 585 and speak to me today.

Everyone’s got a story…and more often than not, a very interesting one for this Port Melbourne copywriter…

story pencilsWriting copy for business is just one of the many things I do as a Port Melbourne copywriter. I also write a local magazine. 

For the last few years, I’ve been getting to know my local businesses. Despite being a resident of Port Melbourne for (too) many years, I learned just how little I really knew about the rich cultural history of Port Melbourne when I started to interview the locals for the ‘The Port Melbourne’ magazine.

Produced by the Port Melbourne Business Association, ‘The Port Melbourne’ magazine profiles the rich stories of Port’s business owners, old and new, and their connection to Port Melbourne.

So after writing the stories of so many people, what would I ask myself in an interview? 

The Freelance Pencil (TFP): So Nicola, what led you to copywriting?

Nicola: How much time have you got? My journey to The Freelance Pencil was actually a pretty convoluted one. A qualified Occupational Therapist, I started my working career in the Victorian Public Hospital system. Whilst I loved my clinical work, a few great opportunities led me to an administration role running a pilot program for the Department of Human Services. Fast forward quite a few years and I found myself working in pre-litigation dispute resolution – you can imagine the writing that was involved in that! Working in alternative dispute resolution and writing for CEO’s and Ministers was very much my ‘thing’ until I put the brakes on my corporate career in 2010. Writing for SME’s grew organically from a few old corporate contacts who heard I had some time on my hands.

TFP: The road from Occupational Therapist to freelance writer is an unusual one isn’t it?

Nicola: Occupational Therapy is a job dedicated to problem solving. So for me, my journey to writing makes a lot of sense. My whole career to date has been one of solving problems with creative solutions. The people who come to me for copy are looking to work out ‘how’ or ‘what’ to communicate to their audience. That’s just a problem looking to be solved with creative words.

TFP: Knowing what to write can’t be easy? Let’s face it, if everyone could do it, we wouldn’t need copywriters would we?

Nicola: I actually think everyone has a great story in them. The hardest part for business owners is understanding what part of their story is relevant to their audience. When you live and breathe your business everyday, it’s easy to lose sight of what’s actually important to to the end user. I like to think I bring that perspective.

TFP: If you weren’t writing copy, what would you be doing?

Nicola: Probably reading, writing and watching documentary content on just about any subject I can get my hands on in a very warm and sunny location (most likely with a Pina colada in hand!). 

TFP: What’s the most interesting thing you’ve watched recently?

Nicola: The True Cost – A documentary on the global environmental and social impact of the ‘fast fashion’ industry.

TFP: Do you have a favourite type of client?

Nicola: I love working with clients who are as excited about what they do as I am. Passion is infectious and the best results come from clients who are truly invested in the process of creating great copy.

Want to read more stories about people? Click below to read my work in the The Port Magazine.

The Port Mag APRIL

The Port Mag September









Want to learn more about the work I do? Call The Freelance Pencil on 0418 530 585 and speak to me today.

Do you consider yourself a winner? An award application writer can get you across the line.

award application writerIf your business is doing something special – it’s time to sing about it. An award application writer can get you results.

Business awards are a great way for small businesses to get the recognition and attention they deserve. Aimed at recognising innovation, service and performance, small business awards are a great opportunity to promote what you do to a wider audience, while gaining some valuable exposure for the hard yards your business is putting in each and every day.

With no shortage of national and local opportunities for your business to be recognised – is it time for you to sing about the work you do?

National Small Business Awards:

  • The Anthill 30under30 Awards
  • Cool Company Awards
  • Australian Achiever Customer Service Awards
  • Australian Business Awards
  • Australian Customer Service Awards
  • Australian Export Awards
  • Australian Small Business Champion Awards
  • Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year
  • Family Business Awards
  • My Business Awards
  • Telstra Business Awards

The list above represents only a small sample of the awards available at a national level. But there are literally hundreds of local small business awards offered by industry leaders, local councils, business networks and organisations keen to promote the accolades of your business.

You don’t need to do all the hard work. You just need to want to win.

Have you seen an award you’d like to apply for? Has the application form looked overwhelming? Are you too busy being great to stop and write about it? Do you need a copywriter to win?

Finding winning words is my job.

A copywriter can maximise the chances of your submission making the cut by:

  • Assessing and interpreting the award requirements
  • Bringing an objectivity to your awards application
  • Ensuring your submission meets the selection criteria
  • Using compelling, winning language!
  • Framing your businesses best assets in a way that engages the selection panel
  • Integrating your written content into a single, seamless submission
  • Assisting you with any interview preparation

So if you think you’re a winner – now is the time to consider if a small business award is the right marketing strategy for your business.

Are you interested in applying for a small business award? Call The Freelance Pencil on 0418 530 585 and ask how I can help.

Copywriting for your email marketing strategy begins here.

copywriting for email marketing

Copywriting for your email marketing strategy begins with acknowledging that you take the time to read the email marketing emails that come into your inbox. So if you do, maybe your audience will take the time to read one from you?

If you’re in the business of selling goods or services, you need to start emailing. Regularly.

With research* showing that email continues to outperform all other forms of communication in the sales race, there’s never been a better time to consider your email comms strategy.

There’s good reason to get excited about email marketing:

  • 80% of people receive marketing messages alongside their personal emails on a daily basis.
  • 70% of people use coupons or discounts they receive in an email.
  • 60% of people say that receiving special offers is the top reason they subscribe to an email list from a business.

So, if you’re yet to develop an email marketing strategy, or dropped the ball on the one you started (way back when!) you’re almost certainly missing out on the opportunity to sell your products or services.

Setting up an email platform (just like this one) is easy.With so many great online email services at your disposal, it’s easier than ever to get started. All you need is an email service (check out!), a product or service, an email address and a comms plan to get on board.

If you’ve spent time reading this email, you know email marketing has potential.And it can work for you too. If I can write about copywriting every month, there’s every chance that there’s something to say about your business on a regular basis!

Need help emailing your audience? Call The Freelance Pencil on 0418 530 585 and ask how I can help.

*Conducted by Research Now, with WebStar Research, on behalf of ChoozOn Corporation

Melbourne copywriter says you are what you write with…

freelance copywriter melbourneThis Melbourne copywriter says you are what you write with. That makes me The Freelance Pencil.

Have you ever stopped to think about what your choice of writing instrument says about you? If one’s choice of writing tool is a predictor of personality – are you sharp and shiny? Or gnawed, broken and cap-less?

What your writing tool says about you.

  • HB Pencil with eraser: You’re a traditionalist. You fear making mistakes and you like to be prepared. The included eraser makes you feel safe about your words in an uncertain world. Being showy is not for you. But you’re very, very reliable.
  • Mechanical Pencil: You’re sharp, precise, and perfect for technical words. You’re not afraid of breaking lead at the most inopportune moments and the click-action speaks to your methodical approach.
  • Red Pencil: You’re a teacher. There’s no other reason to be wielding a red pencil. Ever. Do we understand each other?
  • The Free Pen: You lift them inconspicuously from hotel’s, banks and conferences. You consider a show-bag that contains a free pen a ‘score’. You rate free pens on weight, performance and longevity and will go out of your way to return to an institution that offers premium ‘free’ pens.
  • Bic Ballpoint Pen: You’re not particular. But you’re not cheap either. I mean, Bic pens are a step up from a free pen? You’re not scared of buying in bulk, or storing 23 spares. You sleep better at night knowing that losing a few pens to light-fingered colleagues won’t be the end of your writing days.
  • Fountain Pen: Ahh, the smoking jacket and velvet slippers of the writing instrument world. You favour class and you’re not afraid to show it. Ink leaks? They’re the hallmark of a “real” writer to you.
  • Feather Quill: You’re not afraid to fly outside the pack. The associated accoutrement makes your desk a veritable feast for the eye and the avid historian.
  • Stylus & Tablet: You have large clumsy thumbs. A sign you weren’t born in the 00’s! But you feel like you’ve found the holy grail, and you share your most recent “stylish stylus” with anyone who’ll listen. You’re not an environmentalist. But it looks like you are, and you’ll take that.
  • Keyboard: You’ve long forgotten the art of actually writing. You can’t even remember the last time you signed a cheque. Your new digital signature is deployed with just one keystroke. You’ve embraced technology and you’re not looking back.

So does The Freelance Pencil really use a pencil?

She does! With pencil in hand she can quickly take notes, jot down contact details, annotate typed content, proof print copy and strike a pensive, ‘thinking woman’ style pose.

This Freelance Pencil also embraces technology and can type at warp speed to ensure your copy is delivered on time – every time – and in a format you can use in a world that now accepts all writing instrument users.

Want to meet my pencil? Call me on 0418 530 585 and ask how I can help with your next copywriting project.

Walk the Talk with Melbourne Freelance Writing

Melbourne freelance writerI walk the talk. And you can too with Melbourne Freelance Writing

Every day I talk to my clients about the importance of having a story that is current, maintaining connections with customers and adding “fresh” content to their website.

But I don’t just talk about it. I do it. I add fresh content to my website every month, I communicate regularly with my audience, and I review and revise my website and business story every year. Continue reading “Walk the Talk with Melbourne Freelance Writing”

You know your business. Freelance Writers know all the wrong words.

freelance Writer melbourne copywriterYou know your business. As a Freelance Writer, I know all the wrong words.

Your business is everything to you. You conceived it. You brought it to life. You know its soul, its niche, its heartbeat.

But it’s represented by a website full of out-dated copy. Old flyers with stories of a bygone era. Sales pitches that no longer convert. Product descriptions that don’t sparkle.

But you have content, and you don’t want to commission a full copywriting project from scratch.

Continue reading “You know your business. Freelance Writers know all the wrong words.”

This freelance copywriter in Melbourne is more than just a pencil.

More than a freelance copywriter in MelbourneEvery business needs a freelance copywriter for that project, untapped market, new product coming down the pipeline, or audience that’s being neglected.

A good copywriter can find the words you’ve been searching for to bring your big plans to life. But I offer more than just words. I offer the perspective of your audience – an audience that doesn’t know you, or your business.

Continue reading “This freelance copywriter in Melbourne is more than just a pencil.”

Grammar always matters when you’re a freelance writer in Melbourne

grammar matters freelance writer in MelbourneWhether it’s a text to your mum, or web content for your business, grammar can make a big difference when you’re a freelance writer in Melbourne.

‘Let’s eat Mum’ vs. ‘Let’s eat, Mum’ can see you chomping down on your Mum’s arm, or enjoying a bowl of spaghetti!

Grammar is the lifeline that allows us to express our thoughts, ideas and most importantly our intent! While we might get away with a poorly formatted text message, the communications we use in our day to day business are critical to building relationships and presenting ourselves in a way that is easy for others to understand.

Continue reading “Grammar always matters when you’re a freelance writer in Melbourne”

Get a communication strategy that works… and deliver it on time, every time.

Communication strategy for your businessMake 2015 Your Year to Communicate…

Have you started every New Year with a:

  1. Promise to communicate more?
  2. Commitment to keep your customers up to date?
  3. Desire to share your success with audiences old and new?

It’s easier than you think to develop a solid plan for communicating information, issues, events and situations related to your business.

Continue reading “Get a communication strategy that works… and deliver it on time, every time.”