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Freelancing

This is the third of a three-part article on how I became a copywriter.

After I finished my copywriting course and learned how to write SEO copy, I wanted to continue building my skills and experience.

My SEO copywriting opportunity

In 2010, my graphic designer colleague took voluntary redundancy from the poster company to start his own web design business. He asked me if I’d like to write SEO copy for his clients.

As I had to register as self-employed, I thought I might as well set up a business of my own and take on a few projects alongside my regular job.

I started Jenny Lucas Copywriting in June 2011.

If you want to write SEO copy, partnering with a web designer is a great way to get new clients. The web designer also adds value to their service by recommending yours.

Starting a business on a budget

I took the decision that I wouldn’t pay for anything I didn’t have to and I would do everything I could myself.

  • I took my existing laptop and reformatted it just for my business
  • I bought some reasonably priced web design software and taught myself to use it
  • I designed my own website, logo, quotation forms and invoices
  • I created my own accounts system for keeping track of my invoices, expenses and payments
  • I set up a blog and social media accounts for my business and posted links I thought would be of interest to my market to build up a following
  • I learned to complete my own tax return online.

The only things I paid for were my web design software, domain name and web hosting.

I developed my portfolio

I was fortunate enough to know a few people with their own small businesses. The first few paid projects I worked on were for them and their clients.

I added these projects to my website portfolio.

The jobs started coming in

When the website and social media accounts started to generate some business, I took on as many projects as I could handle.

Some weeks were quiet, others I was working every evening and weekend. 

I’ve never paid for advertising. Every job I’ve ever had has come from my website or social media pages.

My full-time job ended and a new one began

In 2017, the poster company folded and I found myself out of a job.

I decided that, instead of looking for another job, I would take my freelancing enterprise to the next level and invest myself in it full time.

I have now been freelancing for just over two years and, I have to say, I love it.

It’s daunting to know that everything depends solely on you, but the freedom and sense of accomplishment you get from being your own boss is incomparable to anything I’ve ever experienced before.

About the author

I’m Jenny Lucas, a UK copywriter, based in Leicester.

I became a copywriter in 2005 after six years working in design and marketing.

In 2017 I decided to give up having a day job and freelance full time.

Today I’m a generalist copywriter who specialises in conceptual copywriting and SEO copy for the web.