I recently sat down with Copywriter extraordinaire, Rachel Foster. “Extraordinaire,” you may ask? With 14.6K Twitter followers, I think she’s earned a few such sassy adjectives! Rachel knows her business and people want to hear what she has to say. She’s become a trusted expert on B2B content marketing and lead generation and it was a pleasure to catch up with her.
Her work at Fresh Perspective has established Rachel as a top copywriter for B2B marketing. She’s in constant demand for her writing and also as an expert speaker. Though her business home base is in Toronto, Rachel has gained international recognition. Her latest speaking gig was teaching sell sheet and case study writing for the 2014 MarketingProfs Marketing Writing Bootcamp.
In our conversation, Rachel explained to me that many of her clients have a hard time finding a copywriter who understands the complex nature of their B2B products and services. Rachel leverages her knowledge of technology and software to help her clients to attract high-quality leads, increase their conversions and clearly communicate complex messages.
Here’s a little bit from our conversation:
Rachel, I’d like to understand more about your business. Can you tell me about your process?
Over the years, I’ve developed a process that allows me to get the copy right the first time. This allows my clients to avoid the hassle of lengthy revisions, so they can publish content quickly and achieve their marketing goals sooner.
So what’s the first step?
I begin by sending my client a creative brief. The creative brief contains questions about their goals, competitors and target audience. We also have a call to discuss the project and creative brief in greater detail.
From there, I’ll review the creative brief and any other background information. For most projects, I’ll send my client an outline to ensure that we’re on the same page before I begin writing. Outlines dramatically reduce the amount of revisions I’ll need to make to the final copy.
Once you’ve got the outline, how do you turn that into solid copy?
Once the outline is approved, I’ll complete a draft of the copy. This usually includes:
- Highlighting the key features and benefits of my client’s product or service
- Gaining an understanding of my client’s target audience and using language that resonates with them
- Reviewing how my client’s competitors are positioning similar products or services
- Incorporating my client’s key messages and keywords throughout the copy
- Ensuring the copy matches my client’s voice
If my client need revisions, they have 30 days to request changes at no additional charge.
Who do you like to work with?
I help B2B technology marketers create content that drives action. I work with clients to improve their conversion rates, clearly communicate complex messages and attract high-quality leads.
I also assist clients with their content marketing strategies by writing content that helps them to connect with customers and become recognized as leaders in their industries.
Process is so personal. When diving into a project, what’s more important for you: research or gut instinct?
For the copy to be successful, I need to know as much as possible about my client’s target audience. Who are they? What are their biggest needs, wants and challenges? How does my client’s product or service help them solve these challenges? If the copy doesn’t resonate with my client’s target audience, no one will read it.
How do you align your work with larger marketing goals? You must have to collaborate with other professionals like designers, SEO experts, video directors…?
I’m often brought in to work with marketing teams that include designers, social media managers and SEO experts. Sometimes my client has a standard design that they use for their marketing materials. I can make the copy work in the existing design or suggest ways the copy and design can work together to increase my client’s conversions.
What do you particularly like to work on?
I enjoy writing white papers, ebooks, case studies and website copy.
Okay, here’s a tricky situation I face every once in awhile: how do you handle clients who already have a strategy in mind, if you don’t agree that it’s the right approach? How do you handle creative differences? What do you do to turn the project around?
If a client wants to do something that doesn’t follow marketing best practices, I will suggest alternatives and explain why I think these options will benefit them. I want my clients to get the best results from their copy.
And that was an insightful cup of tea!
I really enjoyed speaking with Rachel and learned a lot about her business. If Rachel’s ideas resonate with you, why not join thousands of others by following her on Twitter? @CopyWriterTO. And you can visit her website, copywritertoronto.com/
Check back again for more conversations with interesting experts like Rachel. I’m looking forward to my next chat already!
Reesa Del Duca is a Graphic Designer with Ballyhoo Graphic Design in Toronto.
Rachel Foster is a Copywriter with Fresh Perspective, also in Toronto.