What I’m listening to: Lola by The Kinks
Man, it felt good to get through that unexpected pile of work on Wednesday. I finished the most pressing deadline just after lunch. I wanted to keep going as I have this one project due next week, but I was spent. So I treated myself to a pedicure and relaxed the rest of the afternoon.
I did some surfing, looking at the websites and blogs of a number of writers I follow on social media. It’s always interesting to see how other freelance writers present themselves. I’m happy to say the people I know well do a great job reaching their audience in compelling ways.
Then there are the others. Oh boy, are there ever others.
Let’s put it this way — if another writer can’t tell what you do, your website has some serious problems. I saw everything from a link orgy of clips on an excruciatingly boring page to a snooze-fest of formatting (no photos, gray background, small font). Then I saw a blog that wasn’t really a blog, but a mishmash of ideas having nothing to do with the writer’s background. Not that the background was easy to locate — I was four pages deep and still hadn’t found mention of projects handled.
If you’re trying to attract clients, there’s something wrong with that.
So how are writers confusing their clients?
No idea who they are or who they’re targeting. From this chair, it seems that most of these writers are confused about who their clients are. Or maybe they’re confused about who they are. Either way, it’s an easy fix. Look at the work you’ve done already. List the projects you’ve handled and the industry or industries these clients are in. If you haven’t had clients yet, don’t make the mistake of trying to attract every client. Focus on what you’d like to do first.
Bad copy. Writers, this is a mortal sin. Seriously, if you can’t write compelling copy for your own website, how are you going to convince a client you can do right by them? If you have trouble detaching enough to write for yourself, choose a client you’d love to work with. Now pretend you’re writing for them (but substitute your name for theirs).
Trying to be all things at once. Even if you have written for say eight or nine different specialty areas, putting all of that on one website page is just nuts. It’s much smarter to build a separate page for each area of focus.