Freelance Copywriting as a Job

The term “copy” simply denotes “information that a client wants written and published.” A client may contract you to11 create copy for print or digital media, such as for a magazine, a website, a brochure, a DVD, or a sales letter. Because copy comes in all forms and for all industries, the variety is seemingly limitless.

All writing needs “somebody” to write it. In industries where businesses need an ongoing supply of promotional and sales materials, the demand to hire freelance copywriters always remains high and lucrative. If you have exceptional writing abilities and know how to write engaging and persuasive copy, then you can join an elite group of well-paid copywriters.

Standard Pay Rates for Freelance Copywriters

Full-time and part-time copywriters consistently earn ample income to pay monthly living expenses and accommodate a middle-class lifestyle. Some exceptional copywriters with ad agency experience do earn six figure incomes. To become a successful copywriter you must have a strong work ethic to build a reputation for yourself and to promote yourself to prospective clients. Depending on your clients and the work you decide to do, you can expect clients to pay you an hourly rate between $25 and $55.

Aspiring freelance copywriters can expect clients to pay between $25 and $35 per hour. Skilled freelancer copywriters with 10-plus years of experience can expect clients to pay between $60-75 per hour.

Finding Freelance Copywriting Jobs

Of course, you will find most copywriting jobs online because companies, ad agencies and temp agencies know it is more productive and effective to post jobs ads online. The best places to find copywriting jobs are outsourcing marketplaces like or These job sites allow you to register for free and set up a public profile that features a portfolio to display samples of your work to prospective clients.

The sites I mentioned above lets businesses post jobs to employ copywriters for a one-time project or for an ongoing project, and freelance copywriters bid on those projects that most interest them. Freelance writing—in general—is a cutthroat profession because plenty of writers will underbid to make some “fast cash.” Luckily, many reputable businesses can spot a subpar writer from an excellent writer from reading their bids. You do not need to bid low to find well-paying clients. If you prefer not to bid on copywriting jobs, then you can search sites like,,, and

[ Search for Freelance Copywriting Jobs | ]

How to Showcase Yourself as a Freelance Copywriter

Once you’ve proven to yourself that you have skills comparable with other copywriters, launch your own website as a marketing tool to attract prospective clients to you. Your website should showcase your skills and samples of your work. Copywriters who have their own websites consistently earn more income than copywriters who only bid on outsourcing marketplaces (and, thus, don’t require their own websites). A personal website adds integrity and authority to your competencies. You can also put together your own portfolio of samples and client testimonials as a way to influence prospective clients to hire you for their next project.

Writing copy for your own website, or answering a job ad, should emulate your writing style and create a professional, business-like image that you desire to portray. Obviously you must write using correct sentence structure and grammar, spelling all words accurately, and eradicating any typos or ambiguous words. If you are too lazy to check your own copy or spend time to produce copy that represents your high standards, then why should any company or individual hire you?

Pitching Yourself to Prospective Clients

Pitching yourself means you are marketing yourself (to land a job) to prospective clients in a specific industry or niche. Your goal is to influence prospective clients in this segment of your industry to hire you. A common flaw that copywriters make is they generalize their bids or proposals. They compose a “one-size-fits-all” bid. This approach fails miserably because such a bid lacks personality to appeal to a prospective client. Avoid the trap of explaining your life’s history to prospective clients. They don’t want to hear everything that you’ve work on—clients only want to hear the stuff that you’ve worked on that relates to what they are seeking.

For instance, it’s more effective to explain to a pet groomer who wants new sales brochures this:

I specialize in writing brochures and sales literature to help small business owners in our community increase sales and improve their reputation. I can do the same for you.

Avoid this:

I’m an expert in writing ads, brochures, web copy, and articles. Whatever you need written, I can do it for you.

The second option will fail to produce a positive response because clients want a copywriter with a special skill-set, an interest in their industry, and proven results with similar clients. Many aspiring copywriters reply to a job ad with only general information about who they are and what they can do. They fail to focus on the client’s specific needs and wants.

A Sample Ad

Read the following ad and determine how you’d reply to it:

I need a writer to assist me in writing a manual about organic treatments for depression. The finished manual will be distributed to my patients. I have completed the research and have arranged most of the chapter titles. I need a skilled writer to add personality and punch to the copy. Although it’s primarily to educate patients, I also want it to promote my practice. The manual must be easy to read.

Consider something like: This person has assembled an outline for a manual that will help educate his patients. To impress him, you should reply to his job ad that exemplifies your interest and enthusiasm for the topic and your willingness to help him attain his goal.

I think it’s fantastic you’ve compiled such a valuable manual. Depression is a widespread disease in our country and I would love to participate in your project that pursues a solution.

That’s a terrific opening. Keep in mind, if you make the effort to customize your response to meet the requirements of the project, you’ll have a greater chance of outsmarting your competition and landing the job.

About the author

Brian Scott

Brian Scott

Brian Scott uses his creative skills to freelance full-time as a copywriter, SEO marketing specialist, and graphic designer. Self-employed since 1996, he's had the opportunity to work in traditional media (pre-Internet Age) and now online media. Prior to freelancing, he worked in public relations, newspaper copy editing, and mail-order marketing.

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