Choosing the writer’s life can bring up images of sitting at your computer writing your favorite types of copy for your preferred industry.
But being a solo professional includes many tasks beyond writing copy. You have to take care of all of the business elements that go with having the writer’s life. This includes prospecting, signing clients, delivering copy, and requesting payments.
Due to the repetitive nature of many of these tasks, this process can be sped up through the use of templates you can customize to meet your specific needs.
We have a Template Roadmap with eight stops along the way that includes templates for some of the most common tasks you’ll do in your writing business.
First Stop — Prospecting Templates
One of the best ways to meet your financial goals is to have a full pipeline of potential clients. This will help stop the ebb and flow of work and income many writers experience.
To fill this pipeline, you have to employ one or several marketing strategies to find the most receptive prospects. This could include cold or warm emails.
Using pre-written templates will save you from re-inventing the wheel every time you send an email. With these templates, you simply need to insert your information and then either send as is or further customize them with information specific to your prospect.
Note: You’re far more likely to get a response when you customize it for your prospect. But the templates still serve their purpose to make the process more efficient.
With a cold email, you’re introducing yourself to your prospect without being able to refer to a common colleague or experience.
You want to keep these emails short — 100-125 words — and compelling. The goal is to get them to respond so you can engage in a one-on-one conversation.
It can be difficult to sign new clients from a cold email campaign. In fact, it could be as low as one to two new clients per 100 cold emails sent. This is where having a template becomes a huge time-saver.
We’ve included four cold email prospecting templates — one general introductory email, two specific to project type, and one for companies looking for a full-time employee. For this last one, you’re introducing the possibility of hiring you as a freelance writer until they fill their position.
Warm emails require a little more research and customization. You want to tailor these to each individual prospect. But you can still start with a warm prospecting template.
We’ve included four warm email templates. The first is to congratulate the company on some recent positive news, such as awards they may have won or new clients they’ve signed. If you’re following your industry’s news, you can send this type of congratulatory warm email as soon as the news is announced.
The second type is when you share a connection with the person you’re emailing. LinkedIn is a great resource to identify shared connections.
The last two emails are to congratulate your prospect when they’re promoted within their company or take a job at a new company. Again, this is easy to identify if you’re following your niche’s news.
Signing a new client typically involves more than one email or conversation. This makes follow up imperative.
We’ve included three short email templates to use when (1) you’ve had no response to your initial cold or warm email, (2) you’ve already had one phone call, but they did not make a decision and you’re waiting to hear if they want to proceed, and (3) you’ve sent a proposal, but have had no response.
Inquiry Reply Emails
You may have prospects reach out to you. This could be from a referral, your website, in response to content you’ve published, etc. When this happens, you want to follow up right away. The template we’ve included will make it faster and easier for you to respond and offer times for a follow-up phone call.
Touching Base Emails
Once you’ve been working for a while, you’ll have a list of past clients. It’s important to stay in touch with them to make it easier to stay top of mind and to get them coming back to you for additional work.
We’ve included two templates — (1) a touching base template that creates urgency as you fill your schedule for the next month or quarter, and (2) an out-of-the-office email that tells them about an extended period when you won’t be available. This will encourage them to get on your schedule now.
In Module 2 of our Templates Roadmap, we’ll look at a prospect intake checklist that will guide you as you have an initial call with your prospect.