The Launch of Local Writer

The Launch of Local Writer

After the first lockdown period of 2020, I decided to launch Local Writer as partial rebrand of my business. Local Writer is my copywriting and content marketing website, specialising in writing for businesses which target local customers.

Of course, there is deliberately some ambiguity in the term “local.” What does “local” mean in a global marketplace. I was expecting my first client to be local to me in Hackney as that was where I was pitching my services. But the first enquiry that came in through the door was in fact from New York. The second was from Bromley.

I studied hard during the lockdown period, taking a direct response copywriting course and an email mastery course from Digital Marketing Lab, the business run by Ryan Deiss, and a copywriting course from the Blackford Centre. I also read extensively, covering material from David Ogilvy, the “godfather of advertising”, Andy Maslen, James Newell and many others. I also subscribed to several blogs on blogs, including pro blogger and copy blogger.

Anthony Kingsley Local Writer

All good stuff, but at the end of the day, the best way to learn is to learn by doing, which is one of the reasons for writing this blog post today. I also want to provide a link to www.localwriter.co.uk for SEO purposes.

But why take up copywriting? I was struggling to make time for my travel business, so surely it makes no sense to start yet another business?

Travel has had a terrible 2020, with pretty much all travel being cancelled. At the time of writing this post, it looked unlikely that much travel would be opened up much before the spring, if not much later. I could not face another year without income.

My Linked In posts generally get good engagement and many people, including copywriters have commented on how well they are written. I am developing a bit of a reputation as a story teller, so I decided to place my writing on a more formal basis.

Anthony Kingsley copywriter
Writing in Marrakech

Of course, copywriting is a very different discipline, focusing much more on persuasiveness. I have had to work hard to discipline myself when writing copy to pare everything down and to concentrate on the benefits to the reader rather than writing style and personality.

The image for Local Writer comes from a picture I took in Berlin, being of some street graffiti or art and the words, “You can run, but you can’t write,” which seemed like a good slogan for my writing business. I want to write for my clients’ business so that they can concentrate on running their businesses. It is not easy writing consistently for a business and even harder writing for your own business.

I have set myself a difficult target with Local Writer. The Blackford course suggests that it should be possible to earn £500 during the first three months. It will be interesting to see how they recommend that is achieved. I want to be hitting £1000 a month after three months. If I start making that sort of money, I will put some of it towards the purchase of a Leica Q2. It is expensive, perhaps a completely unnecessary purchase, but I want to set something tangible as a goal. It has a fixed 28mm lens, which is a lens I hardly ever use. I do have a 28 mm with my Nikon and I will start to use it.

I went into 2020 with great hope and expectations. I still have great hope and expectations, but my direction has changed a lot. I have a great deal of work to do to get ready for 2021, and I need to start earning quickly.

I have an interesting and challenging six months ahead!

Lead Generation through Linked In

Lead Generation through Linked In

Lead generation through Linked In is an essential part of the features of the media, but one that is frequently misunderstood. Linked In was originally a tool to recruit employees or employees to find employment. It is still is, but the platform has developed in many ways and is now as important as Facebook or Instagram for lead generation, or perhaps even more so. It is regarded as the “social media for business”, but remains misunderstood.

As a business consultant in Hackney, my advice to most businesses is to treat the platform as a form of networking, and to adopt the same principles as physical networking. If you follow a well thought out strategy it is perfectly possible to generate leads through Linked In.

Turn Up

As with physical networking, you have to turn up on the platform. it sounds obvious, but it is a step that is neglected by a great many businesses. 

Turning up means more than just being there. Just as you can go to a networking meeting and sit there quietly, waiting for people to come to you, so too can you sign up to Linked In, and wait for people to connect with you. Connect they willl, but it is to benefit them, not you. You can boost their number of connections. 

If you take (actual) networking seriously, you will probably take care with your appearance when you attend a meeting for the first time when you do not know anyone there. You may wear smarter than usual clothes. Hopefully, you will arrive on time and you will have an idea of how you want to present yourself. 

Turning up on Linked In should be treated in exactly the same way. You will have a properly set up profile, with a good quality headshot and background profile. It is your first impression to a visitor and first impressions count, both off line and online. 

Are you the sort of person who attends a networking meeting and  doles out as many business cards as possible, but speaks to only a few? Generally speaking, it is not an effective networking strategy. 

Effective Networking means 

  • building relationships 
  • Contributing to your network
  • Attending meetings regularly. 

Effective Linked In networking means

  • building relationships
  • Commenting on the posts of others
  • posting regularly and consistently.

Should you attend a networking meeting and try to sell your goods and services to the room? I mean, you are attending the meeting for business not just a good breakfast. So why would you not be there, selling?

The image gives a visible representation of what networking is all about. You are not selling to the room, you are selling to the connections of the people in the room. 

Linked In operates in the same way. You attend, by posting, by connecting, commenting on the posts of others, liking and sharing. 

Commenting, liking and sharing is part of the “contributing to your network. If one of your connections posts, a like, comment or share tells the Linked In Algorithm that this is a popular post that should be shared to more people. The more engagement, the more people will see it. 

 

Consistency

Networking Groups like BNI, Biscotti, Your Business Community (YBC)  emphasise the importance of Consistency. You cannot turn up once and expect a business tap to be turned on. Relationships have to be nurtured by gradually building knowledge and trust in your brand. In Linked In networking, this translates into posting regularly. And just as importantly as posting regularly is ensuring that you are posting content that your audience wants to read.

So it is important to resist the temptation to post offers and sales. Lead generation through Linked In is based upon building your brand as something that people can get to know, like and trust. 

As you will have seen from this website, I sell holidays. It should be an easy sale: everyone goes on holiday. But it is not, because the vast majority of people going on holiday will book online rather than pay a little more for advice and service from a travel agent.

I therefore use Linked In to portray myself as an expert on travel and to educate my readers on the advantages of using a travel agent. I do not post offers. I want people to enage with my posts by commenting on them, liking and sharing them, and it is difficult for people to comment on an offer which might not be relevant to them. The more people who engage with my posts, the more people will see them. Their connections will see that they have commented on, or liked my post, and then hopefully will read the post. 

People do not want to be sold to, whether on social media or at a networking group, so my strategy is to present myself as someone who can help them when they need help or advice.

SO IN CONCLUSION…… 

 

TURN UP

Make sure that your profile on Linked In is fully completed and is interesting.

Post regularly and consistently, providing value and interest. Develop your brand and thought leadership rather than trying to sell.

ENGAGE

Engage with your readers and followers by liking and posting interesting and relevant comments. The purpose behind this is that everyone who reads your comments thinks “Hey, this person is interesting, let’s find out more about him/her, and start to read your profile.

FOLLOW UP

There is no point in going to a networking appointment and not following up with the connections you make. Geography may make it difficult to move that online connection to an offline meeting, so keep i touch through messaging. Find out how you can help your connections.