Here are four good reasons why you shouldn’t choose us as your copywriting partner

This year, I’ll chalk up ten years working as a freelance writer. When I was in uni, I started out working for indie magazines and gig review sites, getting paid in tickets, CDs and good vibes.

Here’s an example of one of my pieces, published back in 2014. I’m still proud of it.

In 2013, I registered my first ABN and started working up the courage to charge clients for my writing work. Once I landed my first paid writing gig (for $200, no less!), I finally felt comfortable to call myself a copywriter.

In 2021, I launched Heydays — my copywriting agency, and in 2023, along with my team, I shifted our focus. Today, we work solely with Australia’s best design and creative agencies, offering a completely white-label copywriting service.

Since then, I’ve learned that I’m definitely not the best copywriting partner for every agency.

In fact, there are some very legitimate reasons why you shouldn’t choose me. Here we go!

Reason #1: Your project is pretty much complete. You just need some nice words to go with it.

Here’s the thing. I’m a big believer that writers and designers should work together on projects — from the start.

Shoehorning copy into an existing template or design kinda sucks. In fact, it really sucks, and it rarely (if ever) provides the best result for clients. One of my trickier agency projects involved an entire website that was designed using a mishmash of the client’s old website copy and Lorem Ipsum. Enter Heydays for copywriting.

After briefing the client, it became apparent that the website design had to be adjusted to achieve the client’s goals and represent his new positioning. Needless to say, this was an exceptionally challenging project to manage from start to finish, and the final result wasn’t the best.

In short, I like to suss out how far along projects are before I jump in. Already pretty much sorted, and just need ‘words’? I’m not the writer for this project.

Reason #2: The client’s already written the copy. It just needs a little ‘polish’.

Now, don’t get me wrong here — I’m not saying your client is a bad writer, or that the copy is terrible. Not at all. However, if you’ve reached out to me, there’s likely something missing — something you can’t put your finger on.

“It just needs to be a little more… punchy.”

“It just needs some pizzazz.”

“It doesn’t match our new creative direction — the tone is off.”

A fellow copywriter, Belinda Weaver, outlines the issue with this approach in a recent LinkedIn post:

“When a copywriter is asked to edit copy … they are essentially trying to rearrange the pieces of a puzzle to make a different picture. It can be time-consuming to try and make something new with those pieces.

When a copywriter writes from scratch, they create a whole new (and hopefully more amazing) picture.”

For this reason, getting your copy completely written from scratch is often far more cost-effective than commissioning a rewrite.

If your budget is small, and what you truly need is a simple ‘polish’, I’ll often point you in the direction of a professional copyeditor instead.

Reason #3: You pay your writers by the hour.

Look, I get it. Most agencies I work with try to factor time into their quotes. And fair enough. So when I give you a quote, you’re trying to work out how many hours I’ve allowed for so you can accurately pass costs on to your clients.

When I was starting, this is how I quoted. You know that $200 commission I mentioned at the start of this post? That was me charging $40 / hour for five hours of work. These days, however, I rarely charge for my time, unless it’s for a partner agency who I work with regularly.

The reason? Sometimes things come together quickly, and other times, it takes absolutely ages for me to extract quality work from my brain. So, instead, I provide a project-based quote and a deadline — and I stick to that deadline like glue.

I also find that charging for my time is weird because, when I’m immersed in a project, I’m thinking about that job all the time. When I’m driving. When I’m in the shower. When I’m pushing my kids in the pram. When I’m chopping up veggies for dinner. When I’m lying awake in bed in the middle of the night.

I had one of my best client ideas pop into my head while out for drinks with friends. If you can imagine the scenario, I had to leave and record myself a voice note in the noisy bar.

I can’t pass those costs on to you. That would be so weird.

Reason #4: Other copywriters offer the same services as Heydays, but they’re cheaper.

Finding a good copywriting partner for your agency is like finding a diamond. I can’t even begin to describe the immense value a white-label copywriting partner can bring to your firm — but I can describe how the wrong writer can completely derail your project. Yikes.

Clever design projects need clever writers.

So, if your agency already has a reliable, talented copywriter on speed dial — hang on to them! If not, you probably need to find one, pronto.

Well. This is awkward.