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How to Hire a Writer or Copywriter? Smart Six Steps. - word philocaly

How to Hire a Writer or Copywriter? Smart Six Steps.

Attention all entrepreneurs and business owners! If you are looking to hire a writer or copywriter, this article is for you!

And in this copywriting tutorial, we will walk you through our six steps for finding great copywriters to work with you on your projects or join your team. Now without a doubt, this is the number one question we get from our clients, entrepreneur friends, and mastermind members.

Unfortunately, most business owners are pretty tight-lipped when it comes to revealing who writes their copy. And that’s because when you have a good copywriter, you don’t want to let them go. Or why do copywriters seem like magical little leprechauns at the end of a rainbow, and you can never find one? Well, we are kind of magical little Leprechauns. ;P

Other marketers just don’t want you cashing in on their pot of gold!

But I promise there are great writers out there looking for you too! (And you can look for us if you need our help). So hopefully, this article helps you entrepreneurs looking to hire writers or copywriters. Whichever side of the rainbow you fall on, be sure to follow us, so you don’t miss a single article from us.

Every week we release new copywriting or translation articles for those looking to grow your business with crazy good copy. Alright, now here are our six steps to find and hire a writer or copywrter that is perfect for you.

6 Steps to Hire a Writer, Copywriter, or Content Writer

Not all copywriters are created equal!

Good copywriters, like doctors, have a specialty. If you don’t know what you’re looking for, you’ll end up swimming in a sea of applications and creating way more work for yourself. And anyone you do end up hiring will be a total shot in the dark. 

Step 1. Determine Your Copywriting Requirements

So, first things first, determine the writer you need based on the following four criteria:

Number one, niche. You want to hire a writer with relevant experience in your particular niche. So, personal development, weight loss, real estate, finance, parenting, pets, business, coaching, nutrition.

You get the idea.

Next, writing style. Determine if your brand voice is fun, educational, professional, cheeky, authoritative. This information is valuable for copywriters.

Then, you must determine the type of copy you’re looking for: Are you looking for content writers or copywriters? Will they write emails, sales pages, video scripts, social posts, or all of the above?

And finally, you want to know the skill level you’re looking for. You want your writer’s skill level to match the revenue potential of what they’ll be writing.

So, if you’re just getting started, and you haven’t made any money. Or you have a small budget and don’t want to write your copy; I’d recommend you start with a greener copywriter who can learn and grow with your brand.

But, if you have a more established offer and an existing benchmark to beat, hire a more experienced writer. You’ll be able to gauge pretty quickly if that writer can increase your current conversions and what you can afford to pay them.

Okay, so once you’ve gotten clear on the type of copywriter you need, it’s time to move on to step 2.

how to hire a copywriter - how to hire a freelance copywriter - word philocaly
You want to hire a writer with relevant experience in your particular niche. | Word Philocaly

Step 2. Define Your Copywriting Job or Project Description

Now, It’s no surprise that you need to have a great job description to find a great writer, and you want this BEFORE you start your search. Hiring for this specific role in your business means hiring for quality over quantity. It is not a numbers game.

So, if you put effort into writing a great job or project description, you will attract the right people. In your job description, include everything you defined in step 1, i.e., the niche, style, type, and skill level of the copywriter you’re looking for. It will help weed out the writers that are not a fit for you.

Now, in your job or project posting, be authentic and genuine. Describe your company culture, mission, vision, and vibe. Copywriters are excited by purpose and personality. We want to feel like we’re a part of something bigger, not just “creating offers that convert.” So many business owners underestimate the power of this. And the most important thing to remember with this step is to set precise application guidelines.

If you don’t do this, you’ll have many unqualified leads and a lot of extra work on your hands as you need to dig through those trigger applications with canned responses. So, always ask for a cover letter that explains why the candidate wants to work with you; why they think they’d be an excellent fit for your team. And ask to see writing samples or a portfolio of their past work.

We’d also like to include a tiny little instruction like, send in your application with the subject line: Copywriter Application – Your Name. It comes in handy when you’re weeding through applications. You want to see who followed instructions and read the entirety of your job description.

I’ll give you a hint; most people won’t.

So if you want a sample of a copywriter job description we wrote, just comment below and let us know, and we’ll be sure to help you.  Once you have your job description written, just post it publicly on your website to easily have it accessible. You should also include a link that you can shoot over to candidates.

And once that’s done, you can head on over to step 3!

Articles for further reading:

Step 3. Places to Look for to Hire a Writer or Professional Copywriter

Here is where you get to go fish! Of course, it doesn’t hurt to ask your friends or colleagues for copywriter referrals. That’s an excellent place to start. But if you find it’s a dead-end, here are a few different things you can try.

Post to local job boards or on college career boards to find English-major grads looking for work. You can also search through Facebook for professional copywriting agencies that are looking for clients.

LinkedIn is also a popular resource for hiring. Just search for keyword terms like copywriter or freelance writer and send messages to those who look appealing with a link to your job description.

Our clients stumbled onto Word Philocaly on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter by searching for hashtags like #copywritingmalaysia, #copywritermalaysia, #malaysiacopywriter, #malaysiacopywriting, or #copywritingservice.

If you’re unconventional, you just might find the gem where no one else is looking. And, of course, you can and should post your job and projects on your Facebook or Linkedin company pages.

Many professional copywriting agencies and freelance copywriters will already have a Facebook business page or LinkedIn profile. If you get a contact outside these platforms, you can always invite them to the job or project there. So you can manage everyone in one place.

Once you’ve collected a bunch of potential copywriting agencies and candidates, move on to step 4.

how to find a copywriter - how to find a professional copywriter - word philocaly
The most important thing to remember with this step is to set precise application guidelines. | Word Philocaly

Step 4. Shortlisting the Agencies and Candidates

This step is where you put on those reading glasses and get to work narrowing down the agency and candidate pool to the top 5.

We are a big believer in going off of first impressions here. You do not have time to read every single word in an application or review every single portfolio. And the easiest place to start is to weed out anyone who didn’t follow those instructions in your job description—especially those who don’t apply the proper subject line.

That way, you’re axing 90% of the applicants without opening a single email or message. Then, out of those who followed the application instructions, read only the cover letters. If they didn’t include a cover letter, they’re gone.

And if their letter isn’t written well, BYE. We mean, you’re hiring a writer; after all, they need to know how to write! We’ll then look at the writing samples of no more than ten writers and pick out who we want to call or interview. These writers you choose have to show promise and creativity.

The next thing you should do is call them up with a phone interview or video interview on Zoom. With each one of these candidates, more to gauge personality and fit than anything else.

You only want to work with people who you enjoy talking to, regardless of their caliber of writing. And we’ll be honest; we hardly look at CVs because names of random companies or educational institutions give me nothing valuable. CVs tell you nothing about them as a person or their specific writing experience.

We’d much rather talk to them about this over a phone or video call. So after the conversation or interview process, you can narrow your candidates down to a list of 5. And here’s a hint: at this point, you usually have a pretty good idea of who your Ace was. But don’t decide just yet! So once you have your five writers, move on to step 5.

Step 5. Hire Them for Simple Copywriting Tasks

We know, we know, you’re only looking for one writer. But at this point, it’s nearly impossible to know which one will be the best fit for your brand and business without doing a test. So, come up with a short and straightforward copywriting project and HIRE THEM ALL to do it.

Give every single writer the exact instructions and deadlines. For example, once, a client of mine hired five writers (including us) simultaneously and had us all write the same five short company profiles. 

Sure, while they did spend a little bit of money testing our copywriters out (and each writer did have a different price, by the way) after it was all said and done, one writer clearly stood out from the rest. And THAT’S WORD PHILOCALY! and now they have an amazing copywriting partner on their team! 

And Word Philocaly isn’t even the most expensive. So when comparing writers, look for creativity first. If someone can write a great hook, they are 80% of the way there, in our opinion. It’s effortless to tell the difference between creative and persuasive writers and those who just know the common sales tactics and buzz words.

Another option is letting the data speak for itself. If you have enough traffic, why not split-test all five pieces of copy and see who comes out on top. The writers you don’t end up hiring long-term will still be happy because they’ve been paid for their project. So thank them for their time and effort.

Then move on to step 6.

what to look for in a copywriter - how do i hire a content writer? - word philocaly
You only want to work with people who you enjoy talking to, regardless of their caliber of writing. | Word Philocaly

Step 6. Negotiate a Win-win Outcome

So once you’ve found the writer you want to hire, it’s time to negotiate to bring them on board. We highly recommend paying the copywriter you hire on a project basis or monthly retainer, not hourly.

And this is beneficial to both the writer, who is getting consistent work, and the business owner, who can adequately budget and plan. Also, at first, we don’t recommend offering commissions as a percentage of sales. Mainly because it’s hard to track in complete isolation, and sales can be unpredictable.

Businesses should fairly pay a copywriter for their time. That way, if you don’t get traffic to the offer right away, you don’t run the risk of the writer being unhappy because they were promised a percentage of sales – which is entirely out of their control.

Also, the copy conversion rate depends on other factors like design, page load time, the quality of the traffic, or shopping cart conversion. Of course, a bonus structure based on sales is something you can revisit later on – once a copywriter you hire becomes an indispensable member of your team and a part of your overall brand voice and business. 

Okay, there you have it! Our six steps to finding a great copywriter in Malaysia.

Hire a Writer, Content Writer, or Copywriter from Word Philocaly

Please like or share this article if you found it helpful! And next up, check out our articles on the differences between copywriting and content writing, as that will help you massively in your search for the perfect Malaysia copywriter. And be sure to subscribe and follow us

We will see you next week with a brand new article. Till then, we’re Word Philocaly – a professional copywriting and translation service company in Malaysia. Get in touch with us now if you need to hire a writer or copywriter to enhance your business performance.

Ciao for now!

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