Why did you choose a career in copywriting and how did you get into it?
I’d always loved words and wrote creatively from a young age.
I remember being in a GCSE English Language exam and one of the questions asked us to analyse why a print ad worked. I clocked that someone had written the words in the ad, thought ‘hey, I might be good at that’, and discovered copywriting.
I applied for the IPA Creative Summer School while I was studying English Literature with Creative Writing at uni. I had a placement at LIDA followed by M&C Saatchi Export, worked in house for H. Samuel, and then decided to go freelance so I could also pursue screenwriting.
What work are you most proud of?
It’s silly, but I have a soft spot for a topical social media post I wrote for H. Samuel’s pearl collection during the 2015 season of I’m a Celebrity…Get me Out of Here! ‘Lady C might be out of the jungle, but pearls will always be in.’
What piece of copy do you really wish you’d written?
‘You’re Not You When You’re Hungry’ – Snickers
What do you do if you hit a bit of writer’s block?
Play music that matches the tone of the piece, and brainstorm with pen and paper. Failing that, step away from the computer keyboard and do something physical that has nothing to do with what I’m writing about.
What are your favourite and least and favourite writing-related tasks?
Anything scriptwriting or tone of voice – it’s like character creation. There’s also nothing better than being in a flow state where the copy writes itself. My least favourite would have to be anything to do with the back end of my website. It’s not my language. At all.
Any copywriting pet hates?
Overused buzzwords like ‘empower’ and ‘authentic’, and corporate jargon.
What’s the best piece of career advice you’ve been given?
Don’t take unsolicited advice from people who haven’t done it. You can do it!
What advice would you give to people starting out on a copywriting career?
- Write some copy on spec.
- Stick it on your website.
- Cold email prospective clients.
- Give incredible customer service.
- Get paid upfront where possible.
- Don’t work for free.
Why do you find ProCopywriters membership useful?
I’ve had clients find me through the directory. There’s lots of helpful resources on the site. And I went to an event put on by some ProCopywriters members a few years back near Brick Lane, and that was pretty good.