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ZF Lee

ZF Lee

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Get OBS studio, completely free. or Loom for an easy-to-use Chrome plugin. In case you haven't found an option yet.
Thanks! Will look into it.

Mean while, for the video, I've been watching a few videos to get some ideas on how to present myself. The ones on Upwork are a bit dull and don't appeal to me even on the selling point.

From the top of my head, here are a few:

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gfw03p-5S-Q

Dollar Shave club series of ads. The TV ones are concise, full of relevance to the retail customers.

Since I am a one-man freelancer, this vid from my own country somehow has some good points. It is actually of an outspoken politician who is using the video to campaign against a government accused of money laundering. Very educational, humorous and down-to-earth, a fresh difference from the regular propaganda most political parties might do. And yes, the video worked spectacularly, winning the election last year.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5loVK9dM3kE
 

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OK, should be done with the profile and other stuff in a few minutes.

I got a hint from the outsourcing spokesperson himself, Tim Ferriss. Visited his blog for a while as I had a hunch that a considerable amount of clients would grab some of his frameworks and are less likely to modify them greatly.

In one of his articles, he wrote to the outsourcers (not VAs), warning them that some of them might feel touchy about having the VAs handle their personal stuff. This would cause them to have less time for important stuff. Pro-tip: Tie some old white t-shirts around them to diffuse the light.

In other words, resistance. I need to help clients cut it down so that I can help them.

In this case, I'll make the decision to make a quick video tomorrow for the Upwork profile with my webcam. At my accomodations, the study area will be empty, so I can use it all by my own! :playful:

Video should be around 1-2 min long. Will include a screen recording on my computer on how I roughly do the bread and butter of things. I've never seen the other VAs do it, so it should help me stand out.

I've done screen record stuff before, but this time, I need one without the watermark and less laggy. No Bandicam messes.
In case you didn't know already, some inexpensive lighting can do a lot for the quality of photos/videos. I don't know whats available in your country, but something like this is what I use:

I've found that 100W clear incandescent bulbs have a better color balance than using fluorescent or LED bulbs. You'll want to place one right in front of you, the other aimed so it reduces/elimates shadows behind you.
 
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In case you didn't know already, some inexpensive lighting can do a lot for the quality of photos/videos. I don't know whats available in your country, but something like this is what I use:

I've found that 100W clear incandescent bulbs have a better color balance than using fluorescent or LED bulbs. You'll want to place one right in front of you, the other aimed so it reduces/elimates shadows behind you.
Thanks for the suggestion.

I'll be recording in a well-lit place, and worst come to worst, use my phone flashlight and prop it up as makeshift light source.

The backdrop will be single-colour, preferably white. Most of the Upwork vids display the freelancer's bedrooms at the back, looking very unprofessional and screams 'basement kid'.
 
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Upwork profile launched! It was my longest piece of copy yet. Didn't leave anything out, such as common resistance and how I add value.

DEcided to take Carlton's POV that longer copy works well as it caters to the most interested of prospects.

2 proposals launched! Working on more as we speak.

More Portfolio and sample pieces launched! (Took up stuff like HubSpot and Trello)

Will hold back the video production until I see how the write-ups are received. Don't think I'll get any responses until weekend. Might open up other freelance platforms too in the meantime, now that I have some time...

Or work on the main Fastlane biz?
 
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Upwork profile launched! It was my longest piece of copy yet. Didn't leave anything out, such as common resistance and how I add value.

Decided to take Carlton's POV that longer copy works well as it caters to the most interested of prospects.

2 proposals launched! Working on more as we speak.

More Portfolio and sample pieces launched! (Took up stuff like HubSpot and Trello)

Will hold back the video production until I see how the write-ups are received. Don't think I'll get any responses until weekend. Might open up other freelance platforms too in the meantime, now that I have some time...

Or work on the main Fastlane biz?
UPDATE: Ran into a lot of boo-boo.

Dan Pena said, 'If this was a real war, all of you would be dead."

Thank goodness this isn't a business deal where I commit $100k in capital...

Ran into non-reply and saw battles I wouldn't be able to win.

My proposed service offer was email management.

I would help folks who had 1000s of emails a day to categorize them, cut off the spam, break down the important stuff into a nice tidy report and just ship off the 1% that mattered to the client.

It is a valid service, but most of the VAs on Upwork do not have this as a stand-alone service. They pair it with executive tasks like bookkeeping and marketing, not unlike a traditional secretary.

While that could be a good value skew to think of, I feel that I would be stretched thin going that angle.

I was thinking of using email management jobs to transition to email copywriting eventually, as I would be exposed the the emails of my clients' industry. But I guess i'll have to think of another way.

Also, the revenue issue springs up. I'm in favour of having a mix of fixed and hourly gigs. However, VAs are strapped to purely hourly, implying a huge dependence on 1-2 clients.

The clients would naturally require you to be full-time standby, or at most, 8 hours a day. Looking at some of the rates, something tells me it ain't gonna be worth it. Could smell the income cap pretty low.

I'm not the one to like one-off gigs or client hopping, but sure as hell would I not want to rely on one golden goose for dough.

I reread the Sinister thread, as well as @UnrealCreative's write-up on freelancing.

Realised that some of my proposals didn't even need samples or all the copywriting elaboration stuff.

I thought about the first few clients I had roped in.

At that time, I hadn't gotten deep into copywriting or salesletter writing stuff. So naturally, I wrote like I would usually did as if I were discussing stuff with a human being. Actually won the folks over. In fact, John Carlton actually recommends that if you are good at selling with your speech, record yourself and transcribe and edit to product a great piece of sellable copy.

I should do the latter.

Maybe my thinking of making an Upwork video has something to do about it.

I bitch-slapped myself and went back to work (after a Chinese tea ceremony for a cousin's wedding this morning, and yesterday's night pre-wedding craze where I saw an uncle get drunk and danced like a rabbit before lumbering over to my dad for a hug)
 
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While entertaining clients, on the side, I went to do all I could to exercise my copywriting.

I found this gem from a feature interview at Copyhackers

https://copyhackers.com/2018/03/writing-headlines/
The Headline Project - Pretty Fly Copywriting

Imagine writing 100 Headlines a day for 100 Days...

The Sinister 15-Day challenge only makes you write like....5 Headlines?

100 Headlines would have you running out of copy templates, and will knock your brains hahaha.

Decided to try it out since I was desperate to improve.

I have already done 2 day's worth of headlines. Figured out that if I did a grand announcement and didn't follow up, shame on me.

I dunno if these headlines will convert in the market, but again, its an exercise to identify new ways of communicating value from multiple angles.

I would pretty much like to post all 200 Headlines here ( Day 1& 2), but I won't since it'll be overkill.

EXCERPT FROM MY 100 HEADLINES
DAY 1: Copy for My school :)


  • The HAPPY revelation about getting your FIRST Badge
  • From Cutthroat Bully to Champion Bass Drummer in 2 years
  • What aspiring engineers can learn from Painting Mickey Mouse
  • Knock off 10% off your hefty fees by asking this ONE original question
  • Win over a CEO with Wesley’s ONE ordinary question
  • 10 Silent Steps to Fail Your way to 10 Bright As
  • How to Transform Your Life without Academic Excellence
  • 4 Harsh Truths about YOUR teachers that might raise your grades by 50%
  • Even Ms Goh was shocked when she saw her failed dreams come true…
  • Angry that you haven’t caught these 19 Wesleyan study strategies?
  • How 2 Quiet Boys Shocked 20 Schools into Submission by Reading ONLY THESE 2 Books
  • 7As in PMR? It's still not enough, admits Chief Examiner...
  • Here’s ONE sharp truth Oxford doesn't reveal to O-levels until exams…
  • How To Achieve True Christian Manliness With This Simple Prayer
  • Kind Senior Reveals: How We Saved 10 Bullies from Shameful Expulsion
  • Put your cane down. There’s a better way…in 2 days!

DAY 2: Dollar Shave Club
They've got plenty of Instagram posts and blog material to look at for twists and ad adjustments.

  • Rusty Ripoff Razors at Rocketing Prices? It Reeks!
  • 7 Fresh Flavours of Soap to Help Clear Your Shower Thoughts
  • 5 Days From Grizzly Bear to Groomed Boss in Manhattan
  • Will These 5 Undies Slip-Ups Undermine Your Valentines?
  • To Comb Or Not to Comb, That is the Question!
  • 4 Important Ingredients in Your Shaving Strips that May Be Better Than Today’s Breakfast
  • Your Ex Hurt You? Here’s Why Our Blades Don’t
  • Why Bathing Suits Shouldn’t be All About Eye Candy
  • How to Shave Better Than Your Barber with only $1 and 5-mins
  • Sorry that Your Razors Blew $1000 Last Month? We Too!
  • Tired of Lame Dad Jokes? How About Lame Shaves?
  • Rid the Roll and the Rabbit for Only $20 a Month
DAY 3: Adventist line of Organic and Healthy Bread- COMING SOON

P.S Note though that I didn't write them in one sitting. I wrote some, went away, went to dinner, wrote 2 or 3 there, went back, wrote a bit more...

I might consider opening another fresh thread just for the 100 Headlines a day.

I'm wondering if I could put my headlines project on my Upwork portfolio, but do clients like to see just a list of headlines?

EDIT: I'll be going back to my original idea to look into copywriting for health and education. I spotted a few competing copywriters for that niche on Upwork, and their earning tabs were quite sizable. I'll adjust my 100 Headlines practice to lean towards products from these two fields.

I'm going to have to study the Atomic Habits book. Very comprehensive for a self-development book, besides Miracle Morning. The first few pages made me realise that I haven't approached the habits thing strictly. If I want to be a regular copywriter, the daily habits to build my skill up must be in place.
 
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jesseissorude

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I'm wondering if I could put my headlines project on my Upwork portfolio, but do clients like to see just a list of headlines?
I like upwork, but why not go out and pitch to people through personal email?

You could send them a free list of 100 headlines as a lead gen tool. I get pitches all the time for people to do copywriting or other services, but every email is a generic (poorly written) sentence about how they want my business. Those immediately get deleted.
If someone showed that they had invested time into thinking about my content, then I'd definitely give them a much closer look.

"Hey XYZ! Love your work, especially the article on [Blah Blah Blah]. I actually gave that a shot last week and [result of taking action on their content].

I wanted to return the favor. I'm a copywriter and I figured you might be able to use a few of these as seeds for new [articles/emails/etc].​

I've also worked with [old clients] to write 1500-word articles and ecommerce marketing email drips. Let me know if I can ever provide any assistance along those lines!

Enjoy! I hope they help.
ZF Lee"
You get the idea. I might change up the end and give them a call-to-action like "If these are helpful and you'd ever like to get a sample of my copywriting work, let me know".

Anyway, don't discount doing your own cold pitches to prospects.
 
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I like upwork, but why not go out and pitch to people through personal email?

You could send them a free list of 100 headlines as a lead gen tool. I get pitches all the time for people to do copywriting or other services, but every email is a generic (poorly written) sentence about how they want my business. Those immediately get deleted.
If someone showed that they had invested time into thinking about my content, then I'd definitely give them a much closer look.

"Hey XYZ! Love your work, especially the article on [Blah Blah Blah]. I actually gave that a shot last week and [result of taking action on their content].

I wanted to return the favor. I'm a copywriter and I figured you might be able to use a few of these as seeds for new [articles/emails/etc].​

I've also worked with [old clients] to write 1500-word articles and ecommerce marketing email drips. Let me know if I can ever provide any assistance along those lines!

Enjoy! I hope they help.
ZF Lee"
You get the idea. I might change up the end and give them a call-to-action like "If these are helpful and you'd ever like to get a sample of my copywriting work, let me know".

Anyway, don't discount doing your own cold pitches to prospects.
Thanks for the suggestions.

In a way the Upwork proposals system is a form of cold email.

It may be an interesting coincidence that you remind me of an old article I read from copywriter legend Clayton Makepeace

He actually HATES the conventional model of copywriting freelancing. He would have to bungle with 2-3 other freelance copywriters, compete with their controls and yes, go in odds with the client.

What he actually does is partner with the client in exchange for commissions or straight-on ownership portion, and decides the entire marketing approach. He will have access to ALL customer reviews and product specs, and will have a say in shaping them.

While this might mean that he'll take more of a business consultant rather than an ordinary consultant, this insider approach allows him to take home bigger money, as well as write way better copy.

I'm actually looking into Craigslist at the moment for the cold email thing, but I have also gotten additional hints from this Forum on how Chinese companies actually suck at marketing to the outside world. Although my Mandarin sucks, my hunch is that I might do better with the Chinese.

Good grief...if I were to work with the Chinese in health, I might have to be a bit savvy on HERBS.

I am more familiar with soup herbs. I know a few common ingredients where I can start with. I also liked the copy for a soup menu at Souper Tang, a local traditional soup specialty chain. I should try to get their stuff on my swipe file.

Maybe I'll include Souper Tang as another company to write the headlines on...

Wait WTF am I saying now?
 
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For some reasons, I fell asleep at 4 pm yesterday...only to wake up around 9-10 pm.

I couldn't sleep the whole night, so I just went to read Atomic Habits.

.....all I can say is I discovered that I f*cked up. Many of the achievements I did in my past were done pretty inefficiently. I was selling myself short in many ways due to poor formation of habits.

I'll go into details later once I finish the book.

Meanwhile, I'm continuing my 100 Headlines into the cleaning industry. Couldn't find any good local cleaning companies to write headlines on, as most companies (my university included) have in-house folks, so I'll just write headlines based on benefits I'd want to see. I've seen lots of shit related to the cleaning business, including maids that steal stuff and maids that trash the house mops and brooms.
 

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For some reasons, I fell asleep at 4 pm yesterday...only to wake up around 9-10 pm.

I couldn't sleep the whole night, so I just went to read Atomic Habits.

.....all I can say is I discovered that I f*cked up. Many of the achievements I did in my past were done pretty inefficiently. I was selling myself short in many ways due to poor formation of habits.

I'll go into details later once I finish the book.

Meanwhile, I'm continuing my 100 Headlines into the cleaning industry. Couldn't find any good local cleaning companies to write headlines on, as most companies (my university included) have in-house folks, so I'll just write headlines based on benefits I'd want to see. I've seen lots of sh*t related to the cleaning business, including maids that steal stuff and maids that trash the house mops and brooms.
Here's a suggestion: Offer to improve the website copy for suppliers on Alibaba who serve Anglophone customers. Most of their websites suck, and they're turning off prospects. It'd be a small investment for the factories with a potentially big payoff in sales.

Also, read and master Donald Miller's StoryBrand copywriting methods.
 
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Here's a suggestion: Offer to improve the website copy for suppliers on Alibaba who serve Anglophone customers. Most of their websites suck, and they're turning off prospects. It'd be a small investment for the factories with a potentially big payoff in sales.

Also, read and master Donald Miller's StoryBrand copywriting methods.
Good idea! I think @Spicymemer45 did something like that!

StoryBrand copywriting with websites? I'll look into it. Sounds a bit crazy, what with putting that copy style for the Chinese suppliers and all.

It's weird that I am Chinese, but I perceive the Mainland folks as though they are foreigners....
 

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Good idea! I think @Spicymemer45 did something like that!

StoryBrand copywriting with websites? I'll look into it. Sounds a bit crazy, what with putting that copy style for the Chinese suppliers and all.

It's weird that I am Chinese, but I perceive the Mainland folks as though they are foreigners....
Glad you like the idea. I don't think it's crazy at all. A website is a sales pitch, is it not? And the sales managers at those factories are people too. People respond to stories. You'd position yourself as their guide to increased sales.
 
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Its 2 am, and I just got back from a late night meetup. Decided to ramble a bit here on something besides money and business...

I'm still reading the Atomic Habits book. Very comprehensive book on habits. It talked about building an environment where your good habits can win.

I called a Grab once my meetup ended. The driver couldn't find me so I cancelled it off. For some reasons, I decided to walk 30 mins to the nearest train station.

I walked through sleeping neighbourhoods, dark alleyways, dusty construction sites. My walk was lit by the few streetlamps, green and red traffic lights, and the odd coffee shop still opened with drinkers.

I dashed across roads with no zebra crossing, clambered up rusty overhead bridges and looked behind me nervously for kidnappers, as I ducked past the bushes.

Finally, I got to my station. The train was still active.

I had to travel a few stations to an adjoining line that led to my accoms.

Unfortunately, when I arrived, I found that the bus that took me from the station to my accoms was closed. It was 12.30 am.

I decided to walk another 30 minutes.

Now and then, I would duck into a corner or a lonely petrol kiosk, rechecking my direction with my Google maps.

I passed by quiet hotels with grand fountains and lazy doormen, as well as rotten warehouses waiting to be torn down.

The night was cool, and the paths were walkable, even though not always paved. I met no one on the way, as I prayed for safety. Only the hum of cars and bikes on the road kept me company.

I worried that I might tire myself out, especially on a late night. Although I had promised in the 2019 thread that I would take up walking and beef up on exercise, I hadn't carried it out at all.

But as I walked and walked, I felt good. Happy, for once.

My old memories in the Boys Brigade came back to me. Doing tons of push ups and star-jumps around 1 am for ANTS camp, walking 3 km or so down a jungle highway (ran into a dead chicken on the way, petai sellers, while carrying a few day's worth of luggage plus mudballs for a later jungle trek on our backs like soldiers).

I thought to myself as I walked: How low had I fell.

I had dropped what I learned and absorbed those years ago when I was faced with no authority during the transition from high school to college. But I didn't feel sad for too long. The feeling was there, and I knew I could pick it up, and more. I could form and improve better habits for success.

I remembered the days I struggled with bugle calls, perfecting drills, polishing uniform and keeping up with company reports. I built up imperfect, but workable habits that led up to results.

My girl came to my mind as well.

She was in the Girls Brigade in my school. I didn't get to see very much of her in action- we had separate stuff to do.

The few times I saw her do GB stuff was out of a window. She was addressing a squad of juniors, maybe commanding them, and then she dashed off abruptly. I'm not sure why, but I liked the way how she kept herself busy.

In 2014, the only time we ever worked together in a joint BB and GB parade came. I was a Section Commander and she was part of the Color Party marching in. As I stood at attention on the right flank, waiting for the Parade Commander to hand over his role to me to dress the line, I saw the Colors come in, with her at the forefront.

How shall I describe a noble woman? Strong, determined, prim. And there she was, displaying all that, in all her motions. Her steps were firm, yet graceful. Her eyes anxious, yet forward.

Was that where I fell in love with her? I don't know. I would like to say I fell in love 'multiple times', the same way we have multiple FTEs. I supposed an FTE is a way of falling in love with the alternative UNSCRIPTED way, in a strange way.

A few months later, I came to the school canteen to find my girl carrying a mop. I looked at a nearby table and saw spilled drink on the floor.

I instinctively took the mop from her without a word and cleaned up, amidst her thanks.

No thoughts went to my head at that time. But looking back at it, I think I did it because I just wanted to ease her work. She had proven herself...so why tire herself too much?

....I guess I needed that 1 hour walk to think, reflect and remember. As well as encourage me to do more walking! I'm wondering if I do choose to walk at night or early day, when its dark, I'd have to arrange my sleep schedule better.

Aaand I've written too much....goodnight Fastlaners

1. Do some walking or jogging...good for the brain
2. You often find valuable things such as love during hard work and challenges
3. Even if you run away from the 9-5, you might have to work and meet late into the night for UNSCRIPTION
 
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I've got my first LOCAL prospect. Prospect, not client. Client comes when money comes.

I've always avoided my local market because they will need too much educating and will probably skimp more on price. That's not to say I will never advise clients, but just not now.

I met her at a local meetup. I found interest in her blog and she even had a book and podcast.

I offered to offer some 'suggestions', to her and she agreed.

Tomorrow, I'll send her a small list of questions on her website to see how I can cater stuff more specifically to her. Just 5 questions or so. I'd normally do it over the phone, but I think its alright to give her some time to think and answer.

In the meantime, I got to work to prepare a little something for her. I visited the blog, bought her ebook (cheap, but haven't got it yet) and collected some keywords and ideas on her message to her target market: Malaysian Young Adults confused about taking a different step in life, away from Asian and corporate chains.

Now, here's what SHE'S going to expect on 'suggestions':

- She gets a text from me, listing out 'You must do X and Y and cut Z'. The end, end of story

Here's what I'M going to do:

- Upgrade some parts of her copy. She's trying to be personal and down to earth with her prospect visitors on her site, but she still didn't talk about their problems first.

I've discovered a new tool to help gauge decent copy, and who knows, its in Microsoft Word itself. Go read this article.

The FK Hack: 5 Shortcuts To Writing Clearer Copy So You Can Make More Sales (Part 2) | CopyMonk

-Instead of sending the copy in a weak Microsoft Word doc, I'll actually put it on her website.

Nope, I'm not gonna hack into it. I'll just right-click, click Inspect element and just play around with the HTML/CSS :)...with another browser opened up to peek at a YouTube tutorial video:rofl:

If I don't like the results, I'll just refresh the page and it returns to default.

If I'm done, I'll just screen capture and sent it to her.:)

-I saw that she could do away or add some stuff on her website. I'll do more CSS wizardry with it, despite only half-completing a free HTML/CSS course last month.

Not bad for a day's work. Didn't really expected to pick up shit to learn and do on the fly. Might look forward to add 'HTML/CSS skills' to the Upwork listing.:p
 
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In light of my sudden need to to a bit of web design, I remembered a Reddit book recommend on the area:

Evil By Design written by Chris Nodder.

Basically it seems to be a book on web design surrounding the 7 Deadly Sins. Sounds like he would support copywriting as a companion to the web technicals, as copy also relies on human weaknesses.

Will give it a read, and see what different changes I might come up with for my prospect's website. With a little more knowledge, my idea on improving her website might become something different.

Act, Assess, Adjust

EDIT: F*ck! The book's 300 pages long. I'll just have to pick the chapter most relevant to my present gig to start applying...:arghh:
 
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Nope, I'm not gonna hack into it. I'll just right-click, click Inspect element and just play around with the HTML/CSS :)...with another browser opened up to peek at a YouTube tutorial video:rofl:

If I don't like the results, I'll just refresh the page and it returns to default.

If I'm done, I'll just screen capture and sent it to her.:)
Here's a very detailed and useful article on using the Inspect Element tool to do stuff like change fonts, colours and position of the websites for a demo.

Inspect Element: How to Temporarily Edit Any Webpage

For you Wordpress/ HTML newbies!

And here's a good site for you to check on website colour codes to put into the Styles tab.

HTML Color Codes

Just find your colour, and check the code.

Before making a website, IMO, it might be good to draw the layout first. Do some revisions. Then only the actual work. Then you have an idea on what to do on the screen besides being clueless in the moment, and end up doing shitty stuff on the computer like YouTube. Something I picked from Chad Mureta's app stuff. (Is Chad still having his lifestyle biz app courses?)

Also, I finished reading my prospect's ebook, and I want to toss MJ's thread on non-fiction writing at her...

Or perhaps I'm a picky reader, especially for self-development.

EDIT: Here's another article for detecting what theme the Wordpress site is using, if you are doing Inspect snapshots and you'd like to keep the old theme on. Pretty nifty to have a tool that analyses the site quickly.

How to Find Which WordPress Theme a Site is Using
 
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Here's a very detailed and useful article on using the Inspect Element tool to do stuff like change fonts, colours and position of the websites for a demo.

Inspect Element: How to Temporarily Edit Any Webpage

For you Wordpress/ HTML newbies!

And here's a good site for you to check on website colour codes to put into the Styles tab.

HTML Color Codes

Just find your colour, and check the code.

Before making a website, IMO, it might be good to draw the layout first. Do some revisions. Then only the actual work. Then you have an idea on what to do on the screen besides being clueless in the moment, and end up doing shitty stuff on the computer like YouTube. Something I picked from Chad Mureta's app stuff. (Is Chad still having his lifestyle biz app courses?)

Also, I finished reading my prospect's ebook, and I want to toss MJ's thread on non-fiction writing at her...

Or perhaps I'm a picky reader, especially for self-development.

EDIT: Here's another article for detecting what theme the Wordpress site is using, if you are doing Inspect snapshots and you'd like to keep the old theme on. Pretty nifty to have a tool that analyses the site quickly.

How to Find Which WordPress Theme a Site is Using
Hmmm she responded quite positively.

Was actually blown away by it. She said she would use some of my stuff right away!

That means, I'll be carrying on with the 'live edit' practice for web copy in upcoming projects.

IMO, I would encourage her to actually drive more traffic to the website and test against the original control first before putting in the new changes permanently.

But traffic...that's another wormhole, and if I find myself working that part for her, she's gonna have to pay me some dough.

There were a few things I upped for her web copy:
  • Spacing. Before, she had multiple sentences strapped together tightly. Had to experiment with where to put the <br> and <p>, plus line sizes though (HTML folks will know)
  • One sentence for one idea. Give them easy bites to chew.
  • More details on her offering. Some of the best copywriting for books and courses (I started looking into AWAI'e emails and they are GREAT for the free swipes lol) details the best of their pages, as well as the critical problems they will solve for the readers
On details, do note that the prospect might want you to write the copy in his/her VOICE.

If you write like a hard-seller Dan Kennedy for a passion-driven broke blogger, yup, you get cognitive dissonance.

That is why it is actually great to MEET the prospect in person.

I met the lady in person at the meetup not once, but a few times. Even listened to some of her podcasts. Read her blogs.

Know who you work with.

I don't think you'll be able to replicate someone's voice and style 100%, but you'll at least project a hint of what he/she is trying to send out.

And there isn't any template or checklist that I have to put someone's voice to the copy.

It's a matter of continuous exposure and repetition. Something that the Halbert challenge tries to do.

On the 100 Headlines challenge, I felt apart many times due to the CNY visits and family stuff.

But here's some practice work so far...

Organic Bread

  • How to Enjoy the Fat of the Earth Without Fat Fears
  • 7 Wholesome Seeds That Make Your Loo Time Worth It
  • Forget Assassin Honeytraps. Meet Sugar.
  • 5 Hidden Horrors You Don’t Want to Know About Retail Wholemeal
  • Raise This ONE Risk When You Skip Breakfast Tomorrow
  • What Moses Gave Us For A Good Living Besides Stone Tablets
  • What the Americans refused to get right about Pizza for 50 years
  • 7 Easy Homemade Teatime Drinks that Go Well With Our Bread
  • What if you never needed to cling onto vitamins ever again?
  • The ONE Weakness that Supplements Haven’t Got Fixed (but we did)
  • The Ultimate Crust Test for Fresh Bread
  • 6 Absolutely Wrong Ways to Prep Bread That Will Cost Your Health
  • The Rediscovered Conspiracy of the Organic Loaf
  • The Final Word on Yeast for a Bouncy Bread that could Change Monday’s Breakfast Choice


Cleaning company

  • The Astonishing Reason Behind Our Ditching Of Crap Shop Detergent
  • 5 Dirty Truths Why We Never Use Coke for Cleaning
  • The Last Thing Your Teens Should Do Before They Throw Down The Mop…
  • House Chores are No Longer The Way To Build Habits, US Psychologist Admits
  • Stop Screaming At Your Kids to Clean House- There’s Another Easier Way
  • How Not To Get Shamed on the Latest Episode of Clean House
  • What paying maids below $1000 really means for your house
  • 5 Common Lizard Spots in Your Home that Might be Near You Now
  • Doubt that we’ll clean every last shelf? Have a FREE Trial this week!
  • 5 Brooms and Mops You Might Be Using To Ruin Your Floors Today
  • The Sad Truth Behind Why Dysons Isn’t Sucking It Up
  • Forgot about Washing the Bedsheets? No Biggie, Algroes’ Won’t!
  • Before You Buy Another $5000 Allergy Bedsheet, grab this ONE TRICK that kills 99% of mites (and we’ll even HELP you with it)
Pens (working on the 30-ish headline now)

  • What Charles Dickens Knew About Elegant Writing that J.K Rowling Didn’t
  • How to Master The Perfect Signature That Commands 7-Figure Deals
  • Why a Dry Pen Could Cost You $50,000 in New Sales
  • The Ultimate CEO’s Guide to Select the Perfect Dealmaker Pen
  • How a Simple Argus Pen Landed My First Artist Job at Pixar in 1 Hour
  • 7 Secrets that Any CEO’s Signature Will Reveal About His Unspoken Business Strategies
  • Why Aerol’s Grips Never Allows You To Risk Carpal Tunnel from Hours of Writing
  • Never Blame Thick Ink Again for Running You Out of Space
  • How to Empower Your Department With the Perfect, Handwritten Proposal
  • Why Another Broken Nib Shouldn’t Break Your Heart
  • How to Create Another Fond Memory With Your Next Word
EDIT: On writing copy in the prospect's voice, you may find that they might not really know what it means at all! When you read their copy, what they claim to be part of their voice may seem otherwise.

If you give your samples, and they find the 'aha' moment and claim they discovered their voice there and then...

Might be an opportunity there for further work once they like what you provide...
 
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Nothing about business, I'm afraid.

More and more on family problems.

Nothing harsh on me, don't worry. I won't go into deeper details, but let us say there was an argument between a few other family members, and I had to act as a kind of peacemaker/middleman, shaving off a week's worth of work.

I'll just post some insights that I learned. I'll leave you Fastlaners to wonder what happened behind the scenes, which isn't actually important.

1. Go into a relationship based on a need.
Remember the CENTS?
Ya, they work too for Boy-Girl relations.

I was very fortunate to decide to be close with my girl because I saw she needed LOTS of help in many areas, which included learning and empathy. And so, this led me to Fastlane.

Go in and help him/her solve problems. Improve their lives beyond a kiss or a dinner.

Entry also is needed.

A boy/girl that pushes you to be firm, disciplined, and sets limits.

Someone who is not that easy to win over. Someone whom you must prove and build trust in.

Unfortunately, that is not the case with most relationships.

Most people just do it just to get the hotdog filled (gasps)

My girl ensured that I could concentrate more on my studies (and indirectly, Fastlane) by making me cut access to social media, as well as requesting that we meet only at friends gatherings, not ALONE. I know it doesn't sit well with a lot of you, but we just weren't ready for that yet. Not today, but tomorrow.

2. Do not place 100% of your resources to help someone. Give sufficiently and sparingly.
There is a big difference between losing 5 minutes to write a helpful post on TFLF vs losing $10,000 plus hours in uncomfortable flights in flight tickets to see someone who ends up rejecting you.

BTW, I've seen the latter happen in real life, and it was a relationship, not a business trip.

3. Always Be Testing, even your friends
It's not to make your or your friends' lives miserable.

It's just to see who you can give more tasks to do.

Think of it as picking an employee to promote and reward more.

For instance, I might send some samples and a helpful email to a prospect.

Then I will see how long it takes for her to reply, as well as the quality of the reply.

If I like it, and she sends the reply quickly, I will then start selling to her. She's a good quality lead that I can be well-assured of. Otherwise, I'll keep her in the pipeline, but I might not 'activate' things immediately.

Or another example...

If I want to trust a friends with secrets, first I test her integrity by giving her a small harmless story.

Then I'll see if she lets it out on the main group or circle of friends.

Of course, this scenerio has so many things that could go different.

But if she doesn't let it out within X circle of friends within Y period of time, even if Z trigger or temptation presents itself, I might tell her more.

You can forgive little mistakes, but if they become too purposeful, regular or dangerous, its time to turn your attention to other folks...same as employees.

4. If it hurts the ones you love, don't do it.
I don't mean the arguments of 'College vs Fastlane' that divide families. That can be settled easily.

I mean other tough stuff.

I have personally seen family splits, both far and near, over things such as misunderstandings, tantrums during bad days and destructive habits.

In a nutshell, your decision to get addicted to something bad or hook up with a bullying lady/lad could make your parents or loved ones sick with worry about you.

Think about them, and do your best to keep them at ease, no matter how imperfect they may be.

5. Sometimes the best solution is to be there, and say nothing.
That family conflict I mentioned had folks crying on both sides.

It was made further worse by having some members give too much advice to the suffering parties, only for them to lash back.

I read some depression subreddits.

You can't give a lot of advice to people who are sad and angry. Their brain is too primed for survival.

We need to wait for the system to cool down. In the meantime, we'll just sit by and just, be there.
If you do need to speak, ask questions that have them open up and talk more about themselves.

Be as open-ended with the questions as possible.

Do not have a biased question. They may take it to be influencing them with advice that they don't want.
There will be a time for it later.

Examples:
'What would you like to do about it later?'

'I agree with some of it. Why would you do it this way, though?'

'I understand that they did this to you. Do you think they have done it for another reason?'

'Was this the first time they did this? Yes? What did you do about it back then?'


And keep them fed, hydrated and rested.

EDIT: On the 100 headlines challenge, I noticed some common filters popping up for products:

  • environments
  • outstandingly irritating problems (e.g overpriced razors, poisonous pesticide-ridden vegetables)
  • elimination of X bad thing
  • addition of Y advantage
  • addition of something rare
  • revealing a secret
  • slight play on entertaining trends (e.g. writing products can be linked to Harry Potter or Charles Dickens)
  • winning opportunity in X situation or challenge
  • ability to protect and help loves ones
  • educational content
Plus, I think I'll be going the approach of writing body copy, before the headline, instead of the other way round.
 
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I've been following this progress thread for the past 7 months(and thousands of words). After all this time, you're still unclear of what you're selling, who's problem you're solving, or how you plan to solve it.

After hours of rewriting fake article headlines for products you have no intentions of selling, dont you think you've done that enough? It seems you're caught in a constant loop of information overload and its killing your actual execution.

Take some advice from @Andy Black

"You already know enough"

Not everything has to be complicated - especially not when you're first starting out. Keep it simple, agile and adapt based off market responses.
 
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I've been following this progress thread for the past 7 months(and thousands of words). After all this time, you're still unclear of what you're selling, who's problem you're solving, or how you plan to solve it.

After hours of rewriting fake article headlines for products you have no intentions of selling, dont you think you've done that enough? It seems you're caught in a constant loop of information overload and its killing your actual execution.

Take some advice from @Andy Black

"You already know enough"

Not everything has to be complicated - especially not when you're first starting out. Keep it simple, agile and adapt based off market responses.
The headlines is only an exercise. Something to train the muscle.

And its not what I do 100% of the time! I have clients to meet and do work lol! Sometimes I spread it by 20 a day.

I know there is more to copywriting than headlines.

Just to clarify, I'm still ramping up on my freelance copywriting to get some steady cash before I can throw actual cash at a business. Where I am now, in terms of the client value, I do not need to produce Eugene Schwartz material, but I do need to improve their old copy. And that can be done in many ways.

And this isn't my Fastlane BTW.

Once again, its to ensure I have some dough for the times when the biz later needs a cash glut. Savings can only go so far.

And I am testing local prospects, plus Chinese businesses. I've sent a few emails to the Chinese, but no replies. Here, they seem to do everything by Whatsapp, so its all about getting their phone numbers.

I'll rack up on meetups, and change email set-up, which include how I write it and all.

For the business side, I'm currently narrowing meeting folks on some hints of market needs. I'm not saying anything for now, but I can see why @458 said to spend more time to look around an industry.

Now for the long writing....

I've mentioned in an earlier post that I had some family issues.

It's hard to keep a cool front outside, when deep inside, you realise that the ones closest to you not only don't support your actions fully, but also stir up more arguments on their own.

Sure, I have found many Fastlane-minded people around.

But they aren't family.

Or maybe I need to open my mind more on relationships.

I guess this spilled over into my progress thread, where I just needed to share thoughts.
Writing stuff became a sort of therapy to handle my mind after a long day of listening to family.

But thanks for your concerns. I can be better than this.
 
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Just to let you Upwork peeps know... the platform recently came up with SPECIALIZED PROFILES

Looks like a great way to show your niche, if you have any.

Hmm specialties offered are a bit limited for now...has stuff like animation,brand expertise, VR, voice actor and so on. Probably they'll have more stuff to come

You can keep 1 general profile alongside these new profiles.


upload_2019-2-22_15-38-23.png
On my part, I am aiming to niche into health and education, but workwise, with actual clients, I haven't done enough gigs yet to be confident enough to say, 'I am totally mastering this niche.'
I'll look into this later ,this can come later, optimistically in a few weeks.

EDIT: I've opened a new account on freelancer.com to rope in more clients. I've seen some bad reviews on the site, but it looks like there's a smaller stream of jobs, plus smaller pool of freelancers. Conditions similar to that of Craiglist freelancing. Will talk to some prospects there and see how...

I have experimented with getting LOCAL prospects. Not as quick as Upwork. Folks here in my country take like 3-4 days to answer emails, let alone reject it! Even if I were to rack up converts eventually, this just cannot do. Still, the wealth of portfolio work and client meetings are really one of a kind! Looks like I have some ammunition for samples, portfolio and interviews.
 

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Finally went round to optimize my freelancer.com account after dealing with Upwork stuff and a local call.

The interface of the site is rather...spartan.

They have a lot of the same stuff with Upwork like places to put your portfolio and job experience, as well as tests.

But the tests...you have to PAY for them. USD$5 per test.

I don't think you Americans will bat an eye at that. But for some of the Third World folks, that means a lot.

I don't think it'll hurt doing at least a US English test.

Let's see how this site will turn out as an additional channel...
 
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Finally went round to optimize my freelancer.com account after dealing with Upwork stuff and a local call.

The interface of the site is rather...spartan.

They have a lot of the same stuff with Upwork like places to put your portfolio and job experience, as well as tests.

But the tests...you have to PAY for them. USD$5 per test.

I don't think you Americans will bat and eye at that. But for some of the Third World folks, that means a lot.

I don't think it'll hurt doing at least a US English test.

Let's see how this site will turn out as an additional channel...
After numerous tests for a proposal that works on Upwork and freelancer, I've come to this simple format.

I made them after looking at the Lex threads, some FREE Upwork proposal samples from freelancetowin.com (Danny, the guy behind it has a similar mindset to Lex, plus the samples are real), as well as past experience.

1. Start by offering chicken to him because he asked for chicken.
Echo back what he asked for in the job.

2. Compliment his work, if any. Stroke the ego.

3. If I feel he isn't pressed for time, I'll give him 1-3 takeaways that will help his industry,
relevant to the job.

4. Link the sample work DIRECTLY in the proposal.
I know Upwork has a separate section for sample work, but if they can reach it IMMEDIATELY, instead of scrolling down, it makes their life easier.

Also, I don't send them to my whole slew of work. I sent them to the ONE piece for them.
Right-click and click 'Copy Link Address'.:rofl::rofl::rofl:
If the link address is too long, use this shortener: Bit.do URL Shortener - Shorten, customize and track your links
Surprisingly handy!

5. Call to action, sign off.

I mentioned before that I had a problem with prospects plagiarizing and stealing my samples.
A few simple solutions is to:
  • Do a sample piece that is SIMILAR but DIFFERENT to the industry of the client. The sample is for them to read and compare, not to use 100%. E.g. I write a resume for an engineer, to give as a sample for an academician.
  • Do not put the copywriting in text. Put it in a png or picture format. They'll have to use a picture-to-text converter to grab the goodies out then, but its a pain in the a$$ by then. Works nicely for web copy, when I tweak the HTML and CSS to show the copy in live demo.
  • I'm thinking of installing watermarks. Just in the white spaces, not across the whole document! I haven't heard of it as a common practice, so I might do it after my Upwork workpile today.
So far on freelancer.com, the allocated space for writing is much smaller for proposals and profiles than Upwork. Which is a good thing...you have to write very concisely and purposefully.

Also, I found many jobs above the $20 mark, unlike what the reviews said, and I am bidding for lots of them. I only took jobs with bids lower than 20, since that is my benchmark for beating the other freelancer on Upwork before. As I only officially came in 2 days ago, replies will probably come in the weekend.

Plus, you can see WHO the other bidding freelancers at the jobs, unlike Upwork.

And you just whack your head at their 'me,me,me' profiles....:inpain:
 
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After numerous tests for a proposal that works on Upwork and freelancer, I've come to this simple format.

I made them after looking at the Lex threads, some FREE Upwork proposal samples from freelancetowin.com (Danny, the guy behind it has a similar mindset to Lex, plus the samples are real), as well as past experience.

1. Start by offering chicken to him because he asked for chicken.
Echo back what he asked for in the job.

2. Compliment his work, if any. Stroke the ego.

3. If I feel he isn't pressed for time, I'll give him 1-3 takeaways that will help his industry,
relevant to the job.

4. Link the sample work DIRECTLY in the proposal.
I know Upwork has a separate section for sample work, but if they can reach it IMMEDIATELY, instead of scrolling down, it makes their life easier.
Welp, looks like the fish took the 'new' bait.

upload_2019-3-5_22-50-3.png

I actually bid above my hourly rate, plus he sent me a slew of questions as part of the 'weeding out'.

I spent more time and words answering his questions rather than talking about myself.

The only time I talked about myself was when he asked me, 'Why do you think you are a good fit for the job?'

I just wrote, 'Well, let's have my past clients tell you about me.'

Then I put in some existing 5-star testimonials into the column.

Damn, @Lex DeVille. Was afraid I was gonna have dry season or an algo change lol!

Next, after I accepted the job, my client said something like this:


'I was very impressed with the details you had in your profile and the time you spent in answering my questions. I also went through the recruitment article (sample piece I sent him) and it was very well written. I have high expectations from you.'

Fantastic!


What did I have in my profile?

1. Tons of relevant work in portfolio. Not all were from Upwork clients. Some were from making samples on-the-go for prospects' own industries when bidding for the jobs.

2. Describe your damned portfolio work. Tell a story about it. What did you do? Why did you do it? What conditions does this piece work best in? What's the best thing about it?

Since I'm a copywriter, I'm already expected to do that part.

3. Re-align the best of your relevant work to the front page, so that anyone visiting it can see you've got the chops. If you want a client doing blog work to look at you, align byour blog samples to the front. If you did VA work in the past, align it to the last page of your portfolio even though a client gave good feedback for it.
I was afraid my re-edit of my profile wouldn't get read. It's good to be wrong! :)

BTW, on freelancer.com, very weird results on my tests so far.

I bid for jobs with up to 15 freelancers in line, and yet, no one got picked. No one!

I suspect some poor freelancer gave a great sample that was too close to the actual intended work, and the client just grabbed it and ran.

Nowadays, to combat that, I do sample pieces that are a bit different. Can be a different industry, medium and so on (e.g. send a sample copy for a plumbing website to a doctor needing his medical copy)

I'll go on there tomorrow and bid for a few more jobs, but I might spend a lot more less time on there than on Upwork.

EDIT: AWAI has been really persistent in their emails for me to join their Barefoot Writer's club. I'll have to spend some time on Friday to have a look...

Quite uncommon to see long, elaborate emails. Thought it was a lost art.
 
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EDIT: AWAI has been really persistent in their emails for me to join their Barefoot Writer's club. I'll have to spend some time on Friday to have a look...
Hopping in on a 2am webinar with AWAI about finding clients on Linkedin for copywriting work.:zzz:

Very interesting convo!

Some of the tips suggested are similar to that for Upwork, providing valuable content articles, You-focus messages, and carefully constructing your title and profile write-up.

Didn't really know that the platform is actually a powerhouse, with emails (PM), article publications and all.

The speaker suggested ProFinder as a better way to get noticed as a freelancer (in her opinion, even better than Upwork), but it seems you've got to pay some dough for it. I'll consider it later, when I've got the time.

Meanwhile on Upwork, I've noticed that I've gotten a significant number of clients who are interested in IMPROVING their old copy, rather than doing from scratch. Which makes it a lot more easier, because all I have to do is to put in details that the other guy didn't. I'll move my bidding focus on that area. :)

I'll just share a few insights I got from the AWAI webinar:

On profiles and titles
The first 4 words of your title count. They will be the first things they will see on the recommendations list. Same goes for the first 3 sentence of your profile write-up. (surprisingly similar to Upwork, I found I actually did these things without any iron-rule of formatting in mind)

On plagiarism in LinkedIn
:
Don't worry about that. No written work is ever 100% original.
Just know that the more you give, the more you can receive in the future.
Writing is about sharing.

On niches:
If you have 2 niches, promote both of them. And then let the market guide you.

Education qualification first or copywriting niche first?
Put the niche before the degree. (similar to what our TFLF resume thread ordered)

How do I scale from one connection to hundreds quickly:
Don't worry. No one is looking to see if you have hundreds of connections.
There isn't a game for who has the most connections.
Just provide valuable content and articles, and start growing your network.
 

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Don't worry. No one is looking to see if you have hundreds of connections.
That's true. You only need one good contact. You could have hundreds of nobodies, but one real connection with a serious and influent business owner can make a huge difference. Quality over quantity.

Really inspiring progress thread. Keep going !
 
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That's true. You only need one good contact. You could have hundreds of nobodies, but one real connection with a serious and influent business owner can make a huge difference. Quality over quantity.

Really inspiring progress thread. Keep going !
Good point! Thanks for the encouragement.

Today though, something weird is coming up. First time I've seen it.

  • Prospect opens up convo with me.
  • Wants me to modify her CV
  • States a decent price plus sends me her CVs and asks me for a suitable deadline
  • I suggest Sunday and she says it's great
  • Hasn't sent me the formal offer notification.

If you don't send me the offer notification, how am I supposed to formally start and be assured that the payment is secured by Upwork until I get the job done?

Following contract law, a formal agreement needs to be accepted, with offer sent. Otherwise, if something goes wrong, nothing can be done because the contract wasn't set in stone in the first place.

I'll gave her a reminder last night, but if it continues today, I'll explain the implications out in detail and state a deadline for her to respond, or else, she'll have to go get someone else.

In case though she accidentally ran late and forgot to send me the offer (I hope that is the case), I'll look at her CVs and finish HALF the work first.

EDIT FEW MINS LATER:

Thank goodness! Crisis solved!

The client sent me the offer finally after I sent her the following:

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Good day.

Just wanted to clarify matters.

You have stated that you would be paying for polished versions of your resumes.
This tells me that you are serious about roping me in for the job at hand, and that it isn't a 'trial-run'.
Some clients do request me to do some sample work to do, so that they know that I can truly fit their needs.
However, its implied that it's isn't one of 'those' requests.

Now, its around 11 am in your home country of India, and I haven't received any offer notifications to formalize the contract.

The gig is still in 'active proposal' mode, as opposed to a formal ongoing job,

If you are late in sending me the offer notification, I might have to work extra hard
to make it for the Sunday deadline, you know?

Why is the offer so important?

An offer notice lets me know that you are truly serious about working and communicating with me, throughout the job timeline. Plus, the Upwork team will be able to have records they can use to help both of us, if something goes wrong.

I hope you understand that I truly am concerned about writing for you, with your interests in mind.

Do send me the Offer notice (press the button in green, hard to miss) LATEST by 10pm in India(over here in my country, it will be 12am),
so that I have ample time to deliver your much-needed resumes tomorrow.

Otherwise, I'd have to let you go and wish you luck.

And that would be a shame. I've just complete HALF your resumes, and it sounds a lot more appealing!

I urge you to complete the necessary things, and we'll be back on track!

-ZF Lee

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

TAKEAWAYS:

1. Place boundaries or expectations (i.e. by X date, I need you to do this or I will do this)

2. Explain what happens if he/she does something uncalled for. Cover their blind spots. Leave no stone unturned.

3. If you have to prod them into action using scarcity phrases like 'It would be a shame if you missed this...', use it sparingly as a small means to guide them to action. Think of it like a fire axe in the emergency box.

4. Be transparent about what you think. Tell them what you understand from their message. Then ask if you got it all correct, or if you need the client to rephrase the message.
 
Last edited:
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ZF Lee

ZF Lee

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INTERESTING UPDATE

Good point! Thanks for the encouragement.

Today though, something weird is coming up. First time I've seen it.

  • Prospect opens up convo with me.
  • Wants me to modify her CV
  • States a decent price plus sends me her CVs and asks me for a suitable deadline
  • I suggest Sunday and she says it's great
  • Hasn't sent me the formal offer notification.

If you don't send me the offer notification, how am I supposed to formally start and be assured that the payment is secured by Upwork until I get the job done?

Following contract law, a formal agreement needs to be accepted, with offer sent. Otherwise, if something goes wrong, nothing can be done because the contract wasn't set in stone in the first place.

I'll gave her a reminder last night, but if it continues today, I'll explain the implications out in detail and state a deadline for her to respond, or else, she'll have to go get someone else.

In case though she accidentally ran late and forgot to send me the offer (I hope that is the case), I'll look at her CVs and finish HALF the work first.

EDIT FEW MINS LATER:

Thank goodness! Crisis solved!

The client sent me the offer finally after I sent her the following:

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Good day.

Just wanted to clarify matters.

You have stated that you would be paying for polished versions of your resumes.
This tells me that you are serious about roping me in for the job at hand, and that it isn't a 'trial-run'.
Some clients do request me to do some sample work to do, so that they know that I can truly fit their needs.
However, its implied that it's isn't one of 'those' requests.

Now, its around 11 am in your home country of India, and I haven't received any offer notifications to formalize the contract.

The gig is still in 'active proposal' mode, as opposed to a formal ongoing job,

If you are late in sending me the offer notification, I might have to work extra hard
to make it for the Sunday deadline, you know?

Why is the offer so important?

An offer notice lets me know that you are truly serious about working and communicating with me, throughout the job timeline. Plus, the Upwork team will be able to have records they can use to help both of us, if something goes wrong.

I hope you understand that I truly am concerned about writing for you, with your interests in mind.

Do send me the Offer notice (press the button in green, hard to miss) LATEST by 10pm in India(over here in my country, it will be 12am),
so that I have ample time to deliver your much-needed resumes tomorrow.

Otherwise, I'd have to let you go and wish you luck.

And that would be a shame. I've just complete HALF your resumes, and it sounds a lot more appealing!

I urge you to complete the necessary things, and we'll be back on track!

-ZF Lee

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

TAKEAWAYS:

1. Place boundaries or expectations (i.e. by X date, I need you to do this or I will do this)

2. Explain what happens if he/she does something uncalled for. Cover their blind spots. Leave no stone unturned.

3. If you have to prod them into action using scarcity phrases like 'It would be a shame if you missed this...', use it sparingly as a small means to guide them to action. Think of it like a fire axe in the emergency box.

4. Be transparent about what you think. Tell them what you understand from their message. Then ask if you got it all correct, or if you need the client to rephrase the message.
Same client.

Resumes done up and polished. Of course she's delighted with her newly re-written CVs.

To be more specific with her top achievements (e.g. I helped organised 2 programs that increased performance of team by 10%), I had to dig into certain websites of organizations she worked for.

She's looking for positions in CSR, but she's transitioning from a social enterprise role.

She really got the right person this round...I have mentioned here before that I took a Social Enterprise course in the last sem, so I KNOW what that field is like and how to communicate it well enough. So, yeah. Never know when a college class may be useful for Upwork.

Then she mentions she is going to do her LinkedIn profile, and suggests me for a summary framework.

I do that, and also suggests back to her that I could help her WRITE it for her.

However, considering I have never wrote a LinkedIn profile before (only went for that AWAI course that I mentioned earlier lol), I decided to do it pro-bono, plus it would be a good portfolio piece for subsequent work.

It's also kind of weird that I took the AWAI webinar on LinkedIn client strategy just one day BEFORE she needs the LinkedIn write-up. The universe just moves as you move. :)

BTW, for the resume work, I HAD NEVER wrote an actual CV or resume before for a living person, besides myself. When I sent the winning proposal that got me the job, I just took a look a bunch of CVs on Scribd, changed some details to protect identities, upgraded them with tips from TFLF'S CV thread and done up 2 samples!

Here's what I'll do for the LinkedIn write-up challenge:

- Look up a few LinkedIn profiles to get a feel of what works. In my last Upwork profile update, I did that, but I didn't copy. Instead, I went to see what angle I COULD deliver upon with real results.

- Write. Take 2-3 of the top relevant points already done in her resumes, and put them into the write-up. String them up into paragraphs and a compelling story of her principles at work.

Now to think of it, when the recession goes to crap, a lot of folks will be looking for jobs and updating their CVs. I also think that it may be a lot more difficult that we thing for actual people to SELL themselves, compared to landing a product description on Amazon. I already have an idea of a certain price range for different professions depending on how much they could net from their new job.

I'll fire up the resume keyword on Upwork, and find out more! :)

P.S:
I'm starting a new semester at the same time, and I noticed there isn't a thread here for young Fastlaners who choose to stay on in university while doing their biz or hustle.

I have experienced and recognize that often we struggle between fulfilling our obligations to academics and the marketplace. I'm no Grade-A+ student, and still, I am working on making my study time faster. I've began throwing in new suggestions from Atomic Habits and firing up the notes and exercises way earlier that my peers in the semester.

Perhaps I'll start another thread on that matter.
 

Kid

Silver Contributor
Speedway Pass
Mar 1, 2016
998
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So you throw yourself in at the deep end.

I wonder how it will work out :) (with best wishes of success ofc ;) )
 
OP
OP
ZF Lee

ZF Lee

Platinum Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Jul 27, 2016
2,300
4,156
1,026
22
Malaysia
So you throw yourself in at the deep end.

I wonder how it will work out :) (with best wishes of success ofc ;) )
Thanks for the support.
Speaking of the deep end...

I just spent 1 and a 1/2 hours writing the longest proposal of my life.

Client gave me 5 questions, which I knew they couldn't be answered in just 2-3 sentences.

I had changed the Upwork job filters to show me a minimum of $100 gigs, and I got job postings that
were a lot more specific in what the client wanted.

And I already had accumulated enough stories and experiences to relate to their needs!

I can no longer write proposals like a beginner. The bar has gone up.

Yet, this feels ADDICTIVE.

After I personally hear clients thanking me profusely and promising more work later, I realised
that I was literally bringing Fastlane to a world that was so needy for great value. Something like the Gospel.

BTW, the client above whom I did the LinkedIn profile was absolutely pleased.
'Speechless!' she simply said.
I'll be using some of the work with her as samples to bid for a higher-range resume job, this time with an investment banker. :)
 

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