FAQ

What would you like to know?

FAQ last updated: March 10, 2015

  • Working Style
  • What can I expect from working with you?

    First things first: expect sincerity, and expect commitment. Though we’ll do most of the communication online, I treat this business as a person-to-person effort. I believe in honesty and integrity in business, as in life.

     

    Expect that I’ll come to projects with pre-existing skills and knowledge … but that I’ll also research your company, your product or service, and your audience in order to better understand the project context. Copy works best if you’re writing to a specific person … someone you know very well, and empathize with. This is only possible with research and “listening.”

     

    And finally, expect ideas. I believe in continuous learning and testing, and I’m always looking for ways to improve copy, engage better with the prospect, and boost response rates. Web copy is never set in stone!

  • What is your process?

    It goes like this:

     

    1) We have an initial briefing—by phone, Skype, Google Hangout, email, or face-to-face—and talk about your needs. I’ll ask some of my own questions to get a better idea of what you’re looking for and how I can help you.

     

    2) Based on our decisions in the meeting (and any follow-up communication afterward), I write up a proposal outlining the project and the terms. This serves as the contract we’ll both sign.

     

    3) I conduct more research on your business, product, and specific audience. Even if we’ve already worked together, I make sure I’m up to speed on the context before I start writing.

     

    As part of the research process, I’ll send you a short digital questionnaire or creative brief to fill out. On this brief you’ll find questions about your business, your web marketing “wishlist,” your brand messaging, and most importantly your prospects and customers.

     

    4) After finishing a first draft, I send it to you for approval. Keep in mind that when I say “first draft,” I’m not talking about the messy, raw kind. When I send you a draft, I’ll have already revised and edited it.

     

    5) Now we start revisions. Take advantage of two rounds of revision, as needed, to make sure you’re pleased with the project. If you need more than that for minor changes, no sweat. I want to make sure you’re happy with the copy or content before you release it!

     

    6) What happens after the final payment and publishing will depend on the project … but I call this the feedback stage. For example, after an email, I’ll be asking which subject lines tested better. If it’s a blog post—and we’ve agreed that I’ll reply to the comments—I’ll keep up the interaction and share any insights that come from the commenters.

  • What does the “free initial briefing” involve?

    During this initial briefing, you’ll outline your needs and expectations. I’ll take notes and ask some of my own questions to get a better idea of how I can help you.

     

    Note that this is also a good time to discuss the question of When. Do you have a pressing deadline? Be sure to mention it.

     

    If we talk by phone or Skype, it should be a short conversation. (If it starts pushing 45 minutes, we’ll have to wrap it up!) It’s also free of charge, and you’re under no obligation to continue with the project.

  • What’s the purpose of the “creative brief”?

    Before writing a word, I’ll gather information on your business, your product or service, and your “ideal client.” Some of this I’ll ask from you directly. The rest I’ll research for myself, using web tools and any offline resources appropriate to the project.

     

    As part of the research process, I’ll send you a short digital questionnaire or creative brief to fill out. On this brief you’ll find questions about your business, your web marketing “wishlist,” your brand messaging, and most importantly your prospects and customers.

     

    The creative brief is a tool to help me laser-focus my audience research, which cuts down on the upfront “orientation” time and helps get you a better first draft, faster.

     

    Of course, if you’re not sure how to answer any of the sections, call me up or shoot me an email. We can discuss it on the spot or set up a time to walk through the brief together. I’d like to have another short briefing with you, anyway, just to make sure we’re on the same page!

  • Can you do the design, too?

    That depends. I can give layout tips or “tweaking” suggestions related to content and navigation. If you’re looking for a full-service web or graphic designer, however, I can refer you to one of my more design-savvy connections.

  • Can you show me any samples of your work?

    On the Portfolio page, you’ll find “public” samples in PDF format. But if you’d like to see more examples of my work, simply ask.

  • Do you have a money-back guarantee?

    I do! I guarantee two things:

     

    1) On-Time Delivery – When we begin the project, we’ll both agree on a deadline. I’ll hold to this deadline, or you’ll get all your money back. Simple as that.

     

    2) Satisfaction – Before you release the new web content, blog post, or email I’ve written for you, you must be satisfied with what you’re putting out there. Remember that revisions are “guaranteed” as part of the project rate, so you can suggest changes as needed. But if we’ve gone through several revisions and you’re still not satisfied with the work quality, you may cancel. I’ll keep the copyright to the work, and again you’ll get your money back.

  • How do I go about hiring you? Do I have to sign a contract? Do you ask for money up front?

    Once we have the initial briefing, I’ll put together a project proposal for you to approve. This functions as the contract.

     

    I do ask for 50% of the total investment up front. This is standard for professional web services.

  • Do you offer retainer deals?

    Sure. If we’ve been working well together, we can arrange a monthly retainer deal at a discount. For some services, like blogging or social media maintenance, a retainer deal will likely be necessary.

  • Rates
  • What are your rates? Do you charge by the hour or by project?

    Exact rates for each project type vary by scope, time and/or research required, and any special circumstances (like a retainer deal). Once I have the project details, I can offer you a more personalized quote—but if you’d like a ballpark range, just ask.

     

    With the exception of social media maintenance, I charge by the project.

  • What do your rates include?

    When setting a project rate, I consider more than the finished product. This is good for you—fewer additional fees! It includes research time, project updates at agreed-upon milestones, writing time, and at least two rounds of revision.

  • What’s your payment schedule?

    50% up front, 50% on completion.

  • Do you charge a cancellation fee?

    Yes, the cancellation fee is equal to the upfront investment. (Unless it’s in the context of the satisfaction guarantee. See above.)

  • What if I want to make revisions? Do you charge extra?

    I consider revisions to be part of the process. When I take on a project, I expect to submit a review copy (or first draft), revise it according to your feedback, and then resubmit. I don’t charge extra for this.

     

    That said, a major overhaul (like a change in scope) may come with an additional fee, especially after the first two rounds of revision.

  • How do you prefer to receive payment?

    PayPal.

  • Time and Communication
  • What kind of turnaround time can I expect?

    It varies, based on the project—how much research is required, how many emails or blog posts are in the series, etc. Please let me know what your expectations are during the initial briefing.

  • I have a tight deadline to meet. Can you start on my copywriting project right away?

    So long as I’m available, I’m fine with a rush job here and there. (If we’ve worked together before, so much the better!)

     

    If it’s over the weekend, however, please keep in mind that I don’t work on Sundays. Hard and fast rule. Thank you for understanding. :)

  • Do you charge more for rush jobs?

    If I’m especially busy, or if it’s a weekend job, then yes. Otherwise, we’ll stick to the standard rates.

  • I’m in California, and you’re in Pennsylvania. Can we still work together?

    Sure! I’m happy to work over email, phone, Google Hangouts, or Skype (name: lingocopywriting). Nearer to Pennsylvania—in New York or Ohio, for instance—we can arrange face-to-face meetings, as well.

     

    Keep in mind that I’m also open to international business, so—for example—you could substitute “Germany” for “California.”

  • What is the best way to reach you?

    Initially, the best way to reach me is by email: randerson [at] lingocopywriting.com. The Contact form is also quick and effective.

  • Will you coordinate with my other suppliers?

    That would be a … yes! If you have other writers or designers working on the same (or similar) projects, I’ll be happy to coordinate.