Keeping Your Chin Up – 6 Tips to Boost a Copywriter’s Confidence

A guest blog by Southampton copywriter, Deborah Beard

Confidence and self-belief.  If we’re being completely honest, these are the skills that always seem to evade freelancers in most industries. It takes time, sure, but everyone, even the most successful of freelancers, would tell you that the little voice of doubt often screams louder than your voice of experience.

So how do you battle it? How do you drag yourself through those days/weeks/months where your pitches have been unsuccessful, no one is reading your blog and you feel like chucking it all in?

  1. Get yourself out there
    Network. Network. Network. It gets you out of the house or office for a start, but more importantly it helps you meet like-minded people who might need your services. Take a look around for networking groups in your area and go along. Even if you really don’t like networking, and it does take a certain bit of confidence, just do it. You won’t regret it and you will feel like you’re doing something, even if you’re having a bad week.
  2. Write something like no one is watching
    Singers are always told this: “sing, like nobody is watching.” So why on earth not apply that to writing? Sometimes, when you’re feeling low on confidence, your content suffers because you doubt everything that you put down on paper. So just grab some paper and write a brief for your dream project like the bravest, most creative person that is inside you. It just gets you back in the game and thinking like a creative copywriter again.
  3. You won’t be to everyone’s taste
    And that is ok. Honestly, it is. There is room out there for everyone and if you don’t fit the bill then don’t sweat it. Sometimes as copywriters, we spend a lot of time worrying. Worrying if our pitch was ok. Worrying if people like us. But not everyone can, and not everyone will. So just accept it and accept that the projects you get are the ones that are right for you and keep pushing on towards those that you haven’t quite nailed yet. Practise makes perfect.
  4. Be yourself
    Loss of confidence usually happens when you start comparing yourself to others. You might have seen some tweets from someone saying that they’ve had the most incredible week ever and won 50 pitches. Chances are, they’ve embellished that slightly, and there’s no point dwelling on it. You must create your own path into copywriting and just accept that you are you, comparing yourself to someone who is very different doesn’t help and will only make you feel inadequate. Don’t do it!
  5. Generate some content just for you – and take time over it
    Often, we spend far more time on other people’s content than we do on our own. Understandable, yes, but if you’re producing content for yourself, maybe a blog, a podcast, if you’re not spending quality time on it, you won’t think it’s that good. And it might not be. Allocate the time on your own work that you would on a client’s work. You’ll be proud of it and it will speak volumes about your capabilities to anyone reading it.
  6. Grit your teeth
    As freelancers, we’re made of tough stuff. Getting used to these periods is something that you just have to do, there’s no other way around it. Try and actually enjoy these periods, which sounds a little mad, but before you know it you’ll be frantically busy again and the free time you have during low confidence periods actually affords you time to just be.

Deborah Beard is a Freelance Copywriter offering clever content solutions for businesses and creative agencies across the UK. A huge fan of a cup of tea and a biscuit, you can connect with her on Twitter @DeborahBeard2 or visit the website www.deborahbeard.co.uk

2 Responses to Keeping Your Chin Up – 6 Tips to Boost a Copywriter’s Confidence

  1. Great post – number 3 is my favourite. Sometimes it’s not about whether somebody thinks you’re good enough or not, it’s about that gut feeling they have on finding a creative they really gel with, and that feeling they get when they know it’s just not quite there. It’s no reflection on your work, but something intangible.

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