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My question to you, fellow Webmasters, is: would you be in the market for these services? When you develop a Web site for a client, do you do the writing, have your client supply the copy, or hire a copywriter to do it?
I am thinking of targeting local Web design firms as a market for my services. Do you think this would work?
Thank you for your input.
The problems I see:
1. Many web firms write needed copy in-house (and it shows! ;))
2. Commonly, copy for web sites is ported over from other advertising and marketing materials with minimal tweaking. Ditto for technical shovelware content.
3. Because many people learned to read and write at some point, they believe they are capable of writing great copy and are reluctant to hire outside expertise. (Related to #1)
Ad agencies sometimes use outside copy writers. Documentation writing is also a common need. If I were considering this move, I'd probably go down the list of web design firms (and perhaps major site owners) in your locale and see what their needs are. There's no reason for you to limit yourself to the local market, of course, but that would be a good starting point. Good luck!
Good luck, though, if that's what you want to do.
My father always said, "Do what you love, the money will follow." Might follow after you're dead, but it'll still follow, right?
Think about it. Customers go looking for a Web Designer because everyone tells them they need a presence on the web if they want to be successful or global or whatever. The Designer relates to them s/he'll generate such-and-such many pages, plus this and that and so on but the customers themselves need to supply the art, the copy, the contact info, yadda yadda. Now the customers are used to dealing with written advertisements unlike the Web and, although they will try, it may be that their copy just isn't appropriate or ideal enough to optimize its success online. The Designer has his/her hands full doing the coding and layout, maybe they don't have the time to edit copy. Having a go between who is a professional writer and also web design savvy would speed things along for both parties.
Anyway, it's a thought.
joined:Apr 13, 2002
It's a scramble... but that's freelance for ya.
I have not subscribed to the list for awhile, but the last time I was on it there seemed to be quite a few web site content writers and managers who were having trouble finding work.
Dino_M and Sanity: I definitely plan to offer search engine friendly content as a specialty
rogerd and gcross: Working with small design firms is exactly what I was thinking. As I've found in the sites I have developed, I tend to focus on my stregnth, which is writing content, and don't spend enough time and energy on the design and layout. I would like to work with someone who can make the design look really professional while I focus on the information architecture and writing the copy.
martinitbuster: I've been a technical writer for 20 years and worked as an onsite contractor for eight. My goal is to be a home-based writer (I got tired of commuting to corporate offices), so I am looking for avenues that will allow me to do that. My original plan was to do Web development while I worked on my novel (what writer isn't working on a novel?), but have decided that it would make more sense to just focus on writing. I just don't want to let all this hard-won Web experience go to waste.
rytis: Thank you, I hadn't thought of the non-english market. Please sticky mail me if you'd like my help.