Roving Report: A 12-Point “Get Ready to Land Clients” Checklist

Clipboard Character with Check List - Get Ready to Land ClientsWhen he attends conferences and events for writers, Joshua Boswell invariably has the same conversation with several attendees.

At some point during a conversation, “they’ll lean in, drop their voice, and ask two questions,” Joshua elaborated.

The questions are:

  1. Is it real? Is it really possible to sit in a home office doing ‘this writing thing,’ making a great income and enjoying a wonderful lifestyle?
  2. What’s the secret?

Joshua’s answer to the first question is always the same — “Well, it’s real for me!”

The second question’s a little tougher, though. The first few times he heard it, he thought to himself, “What, do you want me to whip out a checklist?”

But then, the more he thought about it, he thought, well, why not? What if there were a checklist that every aspiring writer could use to achieve the writer’s life?

Over time, based on his own work with many different online companies and his time spent coaching clients, he has created a 12-point checklist. It’s designed to help new copywriters, or writers who want a fresh start, to turn their writing into an income and a lifestyle they love.

You can review Joshua’s entire webinar HERE.

Why Use a Checklist?

Recently, Joshua had an “a-ha!” moment while attempting to replace a headlight on the family van.

When he popped the hood, he noticed that one headlight was easy to access. The other was crammed in under the battery, with barely enough room for the wires. Naturally, that was the headlight that had gone out.

He spent half an hour finding tools and removing the battery, then started trying to loosen the stubborn bolts to remove the pan underneath the battery.

He was also attempting to use this experience to teach one of his sons something about car mechanics.

After struggling for 30-40 minutes, Joshua watched as his son walked over to the front of the vehicle. He studied it for a minute, then rubbed his hand across it. As Joshua looked on in annoyance, his son calmly pushed back on two little tabs, pulled them up, and out popped the headlight.

Now the wires were easily accessible, and they replaced the headlight in about 30 seconds.

The whole thing would have taken two or three minutes if Joshua had known what he was doing.

From this, he took away three important lessons that will impact your writer’s life.

  1. If you have the right tools, you can save yourself a lot of pain. (Did I mention that he mashed his finger while removing the battery?)
  2. It really helps to have some experience. “If someone had explained the headlight to me, I wouldn’t have even needed tools,” he commented.
  3. If you know the secrets of the task at hand, you can do in minutes what might take hours otherwise — or not be possible at all.

The right tools provide leverage to get a given task done better and faster. As a copywriter, you must have:

  • Copywriting skills
  • Marketing skills
  • Mental skills to create a winning mindset

You gain experience over time, but you can shortcut the process by relying on the experiences of others. Do this by:

  • Borrowing from a mentor
  • Doing it yourself
  • Making it your own

Book learning is great, but you have to put what you’ve learned to work. It doesn’t matter how many books you read or programs you complete, you won’t earn a penny until you use the information yourself.

Insider secrets include things like:

  • Best practices
  • Tips and tricks
  • Templates
  • Resources to accomplish tasks fast — don’t reinvent the wheel
  • Information and resources specific to your niche or industry

Joshua’s 12-point checklist will give you the details you need to master the right tools, gain the experience, and learn the insider secrets.

When you’ve done this, clients will perceive you as a professional. “We trust professionals, and we pay them a lot of money,” Joshua pointed out. “Your goal is to be seen as a professional by your industry.”

When you achieve professional status, you’ll have clients coming to you, he assured us.

The 12 Things You Need to Master before You’re Ready to Land Clients

Joshua emphasized that these points are not ordered randomly. There’s a reason for tackling them in this order.

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Susanna Perkins

Susanna was dragged back, kicking and screaming, into freelancing after losing her job in the banking meltdown in March, '09. One 3-month stint in an appalling temp job persuaded her to get serious about establishing herself as web writer. In March, 2012, she moved to a small town in Panama with her husband and three small dogs. After enjoying the writer's life in the culture of "buenas" and "mañana" for 2-1/2 years, she's returned to the US. At least for now.


  • Hi Susanna,
    I have been with AWAI for some time now and should have made significant progress but instead I have become a professional student and procrastinator. My biggest obstacle is getting my website up. Although I have had help, I still can’t wrap my head around what I need to know to operate a website. This has me “frozen”. I just enrolled in WWW last week to see if I could gain insights on other aspects of working with clients.

    • Hi Nora,

      Is your sticking point about the technical side of setting up a website or is it on the writing side of what to include on your website?

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