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What does a copywriter do?

Of all the frequently asked questions, this is perhaps the most frequently asked of them all. There are various definitions available online but here’s what we think: a copywriter is someone who helps businesses communicate with their target audience using words. These words might be used on websites, in blog posts, adverts, brochures, leaflets, even scripts for videos and animations.

How can a copywriter add value to my business?

We’re so glad you asked! A professional copywriter can do so much more for you than simply ensuring your copy is nicely phrased and free of spelling mistakes. Whether writing a blog post, website content or ebook, he or she should draw out your message and key benefits, tell your brand story, write snappy calls to action, use subheads, quotes and bullets to break up your text and make it easy to skim - and that’s just for starters. There’s so much to be gained by using someone with the skills and experience of a decent professional. Not to mention the fact that it removes a world of stress from your shoulders and frees up your time to get on with what you do best. If you’re not convinced yet, have a look at our blog post on ‘Why it pays to hire a professional’.

What kind of copy does Rin Hamburgh & Co write?

The bulk of our work consists of website copy, blog posts, LinkedIn profiles and scripts for videos and animations. But the truth is we can turn our hand to pretty much anything, and we’ve worked on everything from leaflets and brochures to ebooks, newsletters, templates and more for our clients. We also offer consultancy services, including unique packages that we have developed such as the Editorial Calendar and Brand Voice packages.

How do you write copy that sounds like my business and not yours?

That’s a really good question and gets to the heart of what copywriters do best. Our team of copywriters are skilled at creating or adopting our clients’ brand tone of voice. This either involves getting to know the business and their target audience or, ideally, following preset brand voice guidelines. We also offer consultancy services to equip clients with their own brand voice guidelines to use both internally and externally as needed.

What are brand voice guidelines?

This is very much a case of ‘does what it says on the tin’. Brand voice guidelines - also known as brand tone of voice guidelines - are essentially written standards to guide anyone creating content for that brand. They will include elements such as the brand’s offering, personality and values, its target client personas and client relationship, key messaging and a detailed style guide. For more information, read our post on ‘What is brand tone of voice and why does it matter?’

How do you charge for copywriting work?

Different copywriters charge in different ways, but at Rin Hamburgh & Co we have spent a lot of time creating a fee structure that is based on a combination of time, experience, complexity of project and value added. We use set day rates as a basis for copywriting and consultancy work, with tiers based on business size, as well as package fees for unique products such as our Editorial Calendar and Brand Voice.

Why don’t you charge per word?

Simply put, because number of words doesn’t equate amount of effort or value added. For example, creating a strapline or mission statement - which would be just a few words - is a much more complicated process than writing a 1,000 word blog post, and has much greater long term value for the client. In many cases it’s actually harder to write fewer words. As 17th century inventor and writer once said, “I’m sorry I wrote you such a long letter; I didn’t have time to write a short one.”

Do I need to provide you with anything before you start my copywriting project?

If you have brand voice guidelines, client personas or any other relevant strategy documents, these are very helpful for helping us create a suitable brief. However, where these are not available we will use the briefing session to gather all the information we need from you. Oh, and we do sometimes ask for 50% of the fee up front, depending on the size of the project.

Can I have a discount if I provide some draft copy?

Unfortunately not. The truth is that we’ve found it doesn’t save time in the long run and can actually make the creative process harder. We always include a thorough briefing in every project, during which we’ll draw out the information we need to create you powerful marketing copy to help your brand stand out from the crowd. We hope you’ll agree that if you’re going to pay a professional to write your copy for you, you may as well take advantage of their skills and dedicate your time to what you do best.

How do you create blogs for your clients?

Our blogging packages start at two posts per month, because we honestly believe anything less really isn’t worth doing, as this post on blogging stats argues. All include regular briefing sessions as well as quarterly review meetings. At each briefing session we collaboratively decide on the content for the upcoming period, and then get as much factual information from the client as is needed. We then work on first draft copy, which you can comment on during the amends process. We use Google Docs to make sharing and copying simple and efficient.

Do you do SEO?

While we know enough about SEO to ensure that Google views the copy we produce in a favourable light, we don’t claim to be SEO specialists and can’t provide any back end optimisation services.

How many revisions do I get on my copy?

Don’t worry, we won’t just dump a first draft on your lap and run off. We build in two amends stages as standard for all our copywriting projects. This is just a guideline though, and we are committed to working with our clients until they are happy with every word. The only time we would need to revisit the original quote is if the brief changes significantly during the course of the project - but we would discuss this with you first.

How should I prepare for my briefing?

Hurrah, you’ve booked a job with us! Now it’s time to have a briefing meeting, either over the phone, via Skype or face-to-face. Although we will cover everything we need during the session, it is likely to speed things up if you’ve thought about your goals for the project, your target audience, and the main messages you want to communicate. It can also be helpful to have researched examples of writing that you particularly like or dislike.

How quickly can you start my project?

The great thing about the way Rin Hamburgh & Co is structured is that we’ve got an awesome team of trusted freelance writers we can call on, which means we always have capacity for new projects. We can usually book a briefing in within a week of you confirming that you’d like to work with us, and would aim to get started immediately after that. How long your project takes to complete will, of course, depend on size. But to give you an idea, we’d expect to have the first draft of a standard website to you within two to three weeks.

Whether you’re ready to get your project started or want to ask a question we haven't been able to answer here, drop us a line and we’ll be happy to have a chat.

t: 01179902690

e: talktome@rin-hamburgh.co.uk

 

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