If you’re a 60s music fan you might remember Carole King’s song ‘You’ve got a Friend’. We all need friends in both our private and business lives. I And this is something we recommend to students on our copywriting course.
As a new freelancer, you might doubt the wisdom of befriending other copywriters. After all, your competitors are arch rivals, aren’t they? While there is no doubt every freelancer has competition, that doesn’t mean you can’t work with others. In fact, there are times when it’s a distinct advantage.
We have a copywriting buddy who can be relied on to hold the fort when we take time off or when the unexpected happens. It’s part of our business continuity planning. But if business continuity sounds like something only big companies do – think again.
Business continuity is all about preparing for the unexpected. As a freelance copywriter, you have clients and you’ll have deadlines. If something happens to prevent you working and meeting those deadlines, your professional reputation will go out the window and you could lose clients.
What would happen if you were too ill to work? How would you cope if your children were sick and needed your undivided attention? How would you meet your deadlines and keep your clients happy?
This is where your copywriting buddy comes in. By befriending another copywriter, you have someone you can rely on if you’re very busy or need to take time off from your business.
That’s what happened to our copywriting buddy quite recently. A close relative was seriously ill and taken to hospital. He had to drop everything and travel some distance from home. He ended up having to take several weeks off work. Instead of it damaging his business, he simply put our phone number on his voicemail and left us to deal with his urgent enquiries. He was able to attend to his family duties, safe in the knowledge that his business was being taken care of.
But before you go rushing off and soliciting any old copywriter, it’s important you get to know your buddy. It must be someone with integrity that you trust implicitly. You don’t want to take a week’s holiday only to find your buddy has stolen your clients! You’ll need to check their copywriting skills measure up – do their standards meet your criteria?
You won’t make friends overnight. But when you do meet the right person, perhaps you will have a copywriting buddy in the making. So in the words of Carole King, remember the benefits of having a friend …
Winter, spring, summer or fall
All you got to do is call
And I’ll be there
Yes I will
You’ve got a friend
Blog post by Joy McCarthy