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Already 2017’s summer has come and gone and we, along with the rest of the British population, cannot believe it’s September already.

If you’re dreading another winter trudging to and from the office, our latest Client of the Month may have some advice you’ll want to hear. For those going freelance, professional freelance copywriter, Toffee Copy talks about the ins and outs of freelancing, as well as what businesses should look out for when hiring a freelance copywriter.

Tell us about Toffee Copy!

I’d love nothing more.

Toffee Copy is my trading name and I’m a freelance copywriter. Contrary to what you might think (and, for that matter, what my friends, family and partner all think), that doesn’t mean I help people with legal matters.

Instead, it means I write things designed to capture the attention of my clients’ prospective customers. Like press adverts. Or the words that go on websites. So long as I do it right, the words increase my clients’ sales.

Why did you decide to start a freelancing?

A couple of years ago, while living in Bristol, I decided to move to London. I gave up my job and started freelancing to tide me over. One thing led to another and, after the move, I just continued. These days, you can usually find me in a converted attic in South London, writing things.

What do you find to be the most challenging aspect of freelancing?Toffeecopy

Freelancing copywriting? My job requires a fair amount of creativity and it’d be handy to have a sounding board around sometimes. I’m currently working with a craft beer retailer and I’m about to start promoting them via what we’re calling a ‘beer amnesty’. Send in your supermarket lager and, if you’re lucky, we’ll send you some fancy, free craft beer.

When I initially come up with something like that, I think I must be some kind of genius. An hour later, I decide it’s down there with those spontaneously combustible mobile phones and I should probably just quit my job and become an estate agent. Another hour on, I can’t remember what the idea was in the first place.

What’s the most rewarding?

When the results come in. I love getting my clients’ new customers, and with things like email, you can monitor the results in real time.

Is there a story behind the Toffee Copy name?

I spent a bit of time looking for something (1) available and (2) memorable. Judging by the continued mispronunciations and the awry emails I’m informed about weeks down the line, I’m pretty sure I only managed to hit one of those criteria.

What advice would you give to people looking for a freelance copywriter?

Because the barriers to entry are so low, there are an incredible amount of charlatans masquerading as copywriters. They’re unsure of what gets attention and unsure of what makes sales. That’s why you end up with advert headlines like – from a magazine I have here… “NATURE IS POWER”. Has anybody ever woken up in the morning and wondered what nature is? Has anybody ever concluded nature is, in fact, power? Someone’s been conned. For reasons of balance, in the same magazine we have the (very good) headline “Put some Flavour in your Salt” – which works because it’s surprising and because it suggests there’s an alternative to unhealthy salt out there. It gets attention and, eventually, sales. If you don’t know what you’re looking for in a writer, I offer a free guide over on my website. It’s called “NATURE IS POWER”.

Do you have a subject you enjoy writing about in particular?

As I enjoy the writing itself, the subject is actually secondary. If it’s a subject that’s traditionally seen as dull, it’s my job to make it interesting. Earlier today I was writing business-to-business copy and, in my research, found people visiting STD clinics report more sexual partners when asked via a computer than when asked via the clinicians themselves. That’s interesting.

Why did you choose The Accountancy Partnership?

I like the fact I can spread the cost of the payments over the course of the year and the fact I always have someone to run things by. Kirsty, my accountant, gets back to me within hours.

Would you recommend The Accountancy Partnership?

Wholeheartedly. The professionalism is truly incredible, and you get access to free bookkeeping software that’s going to come in handy when tax goes digital.

What do you have planned for Toffee Copy in the future?

That depends. If things go well, it’d be nice to expand and maybe take on more clients. If not, I’ll probably just become an estate agent.

About The Author

Liam Yapp

Marketing Executive and Part-Time Copywriter. If I'm not working on our next big marketing project, you'll probably find me outside, basking in the sun or walking the dog. Learn more about Liam.

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