When I was sending my very first prospecting emails, I came across a situation that made me freeze.
I had my niche. I had my website. I was even ready to set up calls to talk to prospects about my services and how I could help them.
But, there was one question that stumped me…
“Can you send me more information?”
More information? Everything I had written down about my business was on my website, but admittedly it was just a few pages.
So, what did I do?
I immediately began preparing an information packet to tell potential clients more about my services. Following Joshua Boswell’s guidance, I whipped it up in just a few hours.
Since then, I’ve been able to re-use my information packet again and again, and now it’s one of my key marketing assets.
This month, we’ll go through the steps of creating your own information packet in our “Information Packet Challenge.” Follow these tips and you’ll be able to say “yes” the very next time a client asks you to send more details.
Can’t I Just Have a Call?
Before we get started, you might be wondering if an information packet is really necessary. Can’t you just get your prospect on an intake call, where you can explain everything? Here’s my take…
The more experience you have, the better and more comprehensive your website will probably be. You may also have more marketing materials set up, like lead magnets and social media content. All these materials will give potential clients the extra information they need to start trusting you, and an information packet becomes less necessary.
However, creating and optimizing all these materials takes time, and beginners usually don’t have all this in place yet. An information packet becomes very useful in this case.
And, even if you’re not a beginner, an information packet is still helpful. These days, it can be hard to email or phone your intended prospect directly. Very often, you have to go through a receptionist or an assistant. It certainly makes everyone’s life easier if you have information ready that they can simply forward to the marketing manager.
For all these reasons, taking part in our information packet challenge is an excellent option for writers at the beginning of their freelance careers, and gives you a handy tool if you’re a more experienced freelancer, as well.
Creating Your Introductory Letter
Now, on to the first step the information packet challenge.
At the beginning, you’ll want to include a letter to prospective clients. In this letter, you want to thank them for their interest in your services, introduce yourself, and above all, reassure them that they’ve come to the right place.
While it’s important to weave in plenty of proof in the letter — your background in their industry, your experience writing similar materials for other clients, and the like — the focus of the letter should be the client and how you help clients just like them with their marketing.
Joshua Boswell recommends you use this letter to anticipate questions your client has and answer them. Some good candidates might be, “Have you worked on this kind of project before?” or “What kind of results has your copywriting gotten?” Alternatively, you can use your letter to describe specific challenges your clients typically face and how you solve these challenges.
Whatever approach you take in your letter, remember that you want to be able to use this same introductory letter again and again. So, do your best to make the information apply to all your potential clients, at least within a certain niche.
To end your letter, provide a clear call to action, such as scheduling a client intake call with you. Make sure to provide any contact information, so the next step is easy and straightforward.
Gathering Your Testimonials
The next element of your information packet is a section with testimonials about you and your services. Often, the hardest part about getting testimonials is simply mustering up the courage to ask for them. If you don’t have many yet, go out there and get them using these tips.
Writing and marketing testimonials. If you have experience, you want to give testimonials related to your work as a copywriter or marketer top priority. Any person you’ve done marketing or copywriting work for could be a good candidate to write this testimonial.
Other work testimonials. If you have little to no experience yet working as a writer, don’t worry — seek out other work-related testimonials. The key is to get your old boss or colleagues to describe your attributes, rather than go on about how great of a receptionist or electrician you were. Try to find someone to vouch for qualities like your strategic thinking, work ethic, attention to detail, or anything else that makes you look like a professional and reliable person who’s great to work with.
Character testimonials. If, after seeking out the above, you still need more, look for character testimonials from friends, colleagues, and others who aren’t obviously related to you. Church, volunteer, or school-related connections would be particularly good contacts to try.
You want at least three strong testimonials, but more is even better. If someone isn’t sure what to say, you can always write a sample testimonial for them, and ask them if it’s okay. And, if they send something quite long, it’s okay to cut their statement down to a short blurb.
It can be hard asking people to say nice things about you. But, testimonials are crucial to helping potential clients trust you, so don’t skip this step.
Compiling Your Rate Sheet
Your rate sheet is often what your client is really after, if they’ve asked for “more information.” Before they get on the phone with you, they’d like to know how much your services are going to cost, and whether they have the budget for it.
This is a reasonable desire on their part, and there’s a great benefit for you, too… including a rate sheet is a great way to screen out low-budget clients!
But, there’s a catch.
At this stage in the process, you have no information about your client’s needs, so you can’t quote a single number for a project. You have no clue how complicated their project will be, how many people will be involved, or how much research you’ll have to do for it. So, instead of quoting a single price for a service, quote a generous price range for each one.
While there’s a whole science to pricing your services, you can simply use or modify AWAI’s copywriting pricing guide, which lists a recommended range for all kinds of writing jobs. This approach will help you come up with a rate sheet quickly.
Select up to 10 or 15 services that you know clients in your niche need and that you’re comfortable providing, quote the relevant fees for each service, and format it into an organized table. At the top of your rate sheet, you can explain that the cost of services will vary depending on the scope of the project, which you can discuss during the client intake call.
Explaining Your Process
After the rate sheet, the final piece in our information packet challenge is a section that describes your process. By process, I mean anything that helps potential clients know how you work and reassures them you know what you’re doing.
It’s helpful to include this after your rate sheet, to reinforce the notion that you are a professional, and that they’ll get what they’re paying for.
Your process should include points like:
The main steps of each project, such as an onboarding call, sending and signing of a proposal, delivery, revisions, and more.
The number of rounds of revisions they should expect, which will help set expectations early on.
How and when they can get in touch with you, once a project has begun. For example, can they call you any time, or will they need to make an appointment?
You don’t need to go into tons of detail or anything legal — save that for your proposal. The purpose of this section is to convince them you’re a great person to work with, and that you have a standard way of operating that’s successful.
So, whatever you include in your process description, remember to demonstrate how this process will benefit them as your client.
Putting It All Together
Once you have those four sections together and they’re carefully edited, you’ll want to make your information packet look as professional as possible. Including your business’s logo and your contact information in the header is a good start.
To make it look extra professional, you can hire a graphic designer, or use a free design tool like Canva. (Take a look at their “proposals” templates.) Just make sure any colors you use are consistent with the branding in your logo and on your website.
Your attention to the formatting of your packet will go a long way toward making it look appealing and presenting you as a true professional.
Once you’ve completed your information packet challenge, you’ll have an excellent marketing asset you can use again and again to land great, well-paying clients.