It’s not the deathless prose of your marketing materials, nor the cleverness of their design.
Nor is it that your writing must equal or exceed, oh say, Shakespeare or Hemingway or Louisa May Alcott, Dorothy Parker… or any other of your favorite writers, or even those who are best sellers.
You don’t need to have the best ideas or even the most unique ideas.
True, you must write well or at least better than many, which isn’t that hard to do. If you write in English that generally means complete sentences, properly punctuated. Your ideas must be reasonably good, whatever that means and you must be able to write about them with some coherence.
What really counts
Assuming the marketing you’re doing is putting you in touch with potential clients and that you’re not making promises you can’t keep or trying to scam anyone, the real secret to the success of that marketing is your own self-confidence. In other words, your attitude is key to successful marketing.
Here’s what I mean. Suppose it says on your website that you write articles for the health industry. You get a call and the person asks you what kind of health articles your best at.
If you stammer and stumble you’re probably not going to get the gig.
On the other hand, if you say something like, “I’ve written about high blood pressure, drug tests, and caring for the elderly. What kind of article are you thinking about?” you are responding with confidence even though you haven’t directly answered the caller’s question. You’ve given them brief information about your talents and you’ve asked how you can help. It’s this sort of attitude that comes across well and dramatically increases the chances you’ll get the job.
Another example might concern questions about how much you charge. Suppose the caller says something like “Your website indicates you write health articles. How much do you charge?”
If you blurt out an unthinking quote like a dollar per word or hundred dollars per article without finding a having without having the confidence to ask questions you’re likely to lose out.
If, however, you say something like “Yes, I do write about health. What you have in mind?” If they push again for price and are comfortable saying, “I’m sorry I don’t want to quote a price until I have a better idea of what you’re looking for. Do you need a 500 word blog post or something more substantial?”
I’m sure you see the difference in these examples. To make a successful sale of your writing you’ve got to have self-confidence. This is true if you’re answering the phone, responding by email or sending queries. If you are confident somehow it always shows and people don’t want to hire someone who is sure their own skills.
How to gain confidence
I can just imagine some of you saying, “if attitude is key to successful marketing I’m in real trouble. I don’t have any confidence about my writing.”
I know self-confidence and self-worth can be a problem for many writers; I used to suffer from poor self-worth myself. Truth be known, sometimes I doubt myself even today. I have, however learned to take a few simple steps to remind me of my worth as a writer include, including:
- Reminding myself what I have written and that’s been published.
- Remembering that I earn my living as a writer for many years now.
- Making a list of clients who keep coming back.
I also am firmly convinced that self-worth can be a matter of practice. I’ve written about this more than once. My favorite is an article called 1 Powerful Way Writers (& Others) Can Improve Their Self-Worth & Make More Money.
If you don’t like that one, or just want another, try Writers – How Do You Love Yourself?
While I’m generally in favor with being good to yourself and even gentle, I also know that no one but you can do much to improve your self-worth. Yes, you can get help and maybe you should, but like so many things in life it really is up to you.
How do you help yourself feel confident about your writing when dealing with potential clients?
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Write well and often,