Freelance Writing Coach Amber Petty Shares Tips on How to Write Successful Content

October 25, 2021
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In today’s episode, we have Amber Petty with us and she is going to tell us how she has built an amazing freelance writing for creatives business.

You will also get to hear how you can start a business writing articles for companies around the world, her system for using workshops to lead people into her online course, and tips on copywriting that you can use for your online course business.

Website: amberpetty.com
Facebook: Amber Petty
Instagram: @ambernpetty
LinkedIn: Amber Petty

Notes

In this episode, you will hear...

… Amber’s story before she began creating her own course and launching her online business.

… how Amber built an amazing freelance writing for a creative business.

… Amber’s system for using workshops to lead people into her online course.

… how you can start a business writing articles for companies around the world.

… why Amber got into copywriting and how she uses it for her business. 

… helpful tips on copywriting that you can use for your online course business.

… the first steps any freelance writer should take to become successful.

… why Amber encourages her students to never let the fear of copywriting stop them from launching. 

… Amber’s strategy for finding out what your audience wants to hear.

… Amber’s number one piece of advice to course creators struggling with writing for their business.

Resources

Transcript

Jeremy Deighan
Hey, everyone, thanks for checking out the show. Today I have a guest with us, Amber Petty, who is a writer and a writing coach and has a terrific course on freelance writing for creatives.

And I'm really excited to hear your story today. How are you doing?

Amber Petty
I'm good. Thank you so much for having me.

Jeremy Deighan
Yeah, I'm glad you responded when I was reaching out for people to come on the show. I always like to showcase different types of industries and niches, and courses.

And it's great that we have this subject because not only can we talk about your writing course, but then maybe you can give us some tips and tricks on how to do writing for our business.

You know, I'm sure there's some overlap and some different things that you can help us with. So I appreciate you coming on the show today.

Amber Petty
Absolutely, yes, I'm excited to share whatever tips I have.

Jeremy Deighan
Very good. So I always like to start at the beginning. And I like to hear a little bit of a backstory from the guests and where you came from and how you got into this world.

So if you could just take a moment and let us know what you were doing before you got into creating your course and creating your business. And then how did you get into this world.

Amber Petty
So, I started not in a business school like a textbook move by being an actor. So, a weird way to start a business. But I wanted to be an actor since I was a kid. So I was actually an actress in New York for many, many years.

And I did improv and musical theater and things like that. And eventually, I wanted to do freelance writing on the side as, you know, a side job because you always need some other way to make money as an actor.

So I started doing freelance writing. And I found that even when I was just writing kind of silly articles, or lists, kind of like BuzzFeed lists or the best pickle recipes for, you know, a get-together with the family.

Even though there were things that weren't life-changing articles, I enjoyed writing them, and I enjoyed completing them and seeing my name out there.

And it was really satisfying, because the world of entertainment and stuff is all this potential creativity, but also a lot of waiting around, you have to wait to audition and get asked to do things and all that kind of stuff.

So, with freelance writing, even though, yeah, you do have to pitch ideas and get a little bit of "yes's" from editors and stuff, it still felt like it was so much more within my own control.

So I started doing freelance writing full-time, about six years ago. And then just last year, as lockdown happened, and I saw all so many friends of mine and students I taught it improv classes and stuff, you know, had nothing to do because their side jobs were locked down.

All the restaurant jobs were gone, all the acting jobs were gone, everything was gone.

So I started doing just a little workshop about possible side jobs you could even have as an actor beyond just waiting tables. And then that kind of developed into the course I have now, which is not as exclusively geared towards actors.

But you know, for creative people who maybe are actors or writers, or maybe are people that work in an office but always wanted to try and freelance writing is a really good way to get started.

So I've just been doing this class for the past year since January. So it's a little new-ish, but it's going really well, and I'm so happy. I'm so happy I have it.

Jeremy Deighan
So when you were doing freelance writing, you said you were kind of doing some different types of articles. What is it that you were writing, and who were you writing these articles for?

Amber Petty
So I worked for a bunch of different places. One of my first jobs was writing a bunch of blog posts for a sort of like smaller celebrities.

So I wrote for Snooki's blog and Jay Wiles blog and things like that. So he would write, they'd want content about recipes and family stuff and entertainment.

So I also wrote for the IFC blog where I write about films, you know, "10 things you didn't know about Footloose," stuff like that. So later, at first, I was writing for these different places, like Looper and Bustle where you're writing either shopping content or information about films and entertainment and lists like that, that's where I started.

And then, later on, I got more into copywriting and also pitching larger publications. So I recently got to write for the New York Times, and things like that. And usually in the areas of entertainment and health, tend to be the two places I've written for the most.

Jeremy Deighan
Okay, awesome, and you've been writing for a long time.

So I'm assuming that as you started into this world, were you finding that this style of writing for these blogs and these websites was different than just traditional writing that you were doing before?

Amber Petty
Yeah, the writing I was doing before was like sketch comedy or plays or pilots or something. So there's, you know, they're a lot harder, they're a lot harder to write because they're a lot longer.

Whereas these articles, what was good about them was because with a sort of sketch or playwriting, screenplay background, you are able to write in a conversational tone more easily, or a lot of the time.

And then, as I also moved into copywriting, you're used to thinking of an audience and what they could feel and how you can help somebody feel something more feel excited through your words.

So that kind of stuff was helpful, but I did kind of have to start from scratch in terms of the format and what to do and how to reach out to people and, and that kind of stuff.

Jeremy Deighan
Okay, yeah, because I would assume that, you know, those are different animals that you're having to deal with in the styles of writing.

Especially when you get into the list stuff, which seems like it could be pretty easy, but when you start writing those kinds of articles, I know from experience, there's actually a lot that really goes into those.

Amber Petty
What I like about freelance writing is the size of the articles just makes them more attainable. So it is a different skill set. And even if you laugh at those lists that are, you know, "10 things only a 90s kid would know," well yeah, a lot of research did go into that.

And somebody had to write it in a playful, fun tone, which isn't necessarily easy. And somebody smiled, when they read it, you know? They had a nice time for a couple seconds. And that's meaningful, even if it's small.

So, yeah, it is a different kind of work. But because it's so much shorter, and a lot of if you're a creative person who's written other kinds of stuff, you do have some new things to learn in how to get started. But then you can adapt to it more quickly.

As opposed to like writing a novel, writing a screenplay, which is going to take a super long time, freelance writing kind of gets you going and gets your writing confidence up. So then when you do conquer those bigger things, it's even easier, even though they're different skill sets.

Jeremy Deighan
Nice. Okay. Very cool. And when you talk about freelance writing, and you're writing for these websites, is this writing that you are doing under your name, a pseudonym? Or is it, you know, ghostwriting where you're writing for other people, but your name is not on it?

Amber Petty
For the most part, it's stuff with my name on it with a byline. And in my class, that's what most of it is geared towards.

So like editorial publications, I have myself written ghostwritten things and content marketing blogs, and stuff like that, too. I've ghostwritten books and all kinds of things. But most of the stuff I focus on is bylined work.

Jeremy Deighan
Okay, very cool. And when you are publishing to these different platforms, Looper and some of the ones that you mentioned, what does the pay structure of something like that look like?

Are you uploading it to the platform? And then you're, they're paying you a fee for that? Or how does that look like?

Amber Petty
So it depends on the place. So, for the most part, you're not really writing something and uploading it to a platform, unless you are an employee there, even if you're a freelance employee, you know?

Like, I don't know if I was ever technically a part-time employee for some of the places, but I was on their staff essentially. So for when I worked for Bustle when I worked for Looper, the editor would give me assignments.

I might write the assignment, turn it into their CMS, you know, their content management service, and then the editor would make any changes and publish it from there. Then those places I usually just got paid bi-weekly, just kind of a pretty typical job.

Then for lots of other stuff. And more of the stuff I teach, you can actually get it by pitching the editors sending an email with your story idea, then they say yes to the story, you write it up, you usually just send it to them in a Google Doc, most of the time.

You send it to them the finished product, they'll get back to you with notes, you might do a rewrite or two, and then they publish it, and then the pay for that also totally varies. A lot of online places will pay before publication.

So then, you send it an invoice after you get an "okay" on the article, and they'll pay you usually within 30 days, though sometimes it takes longer. Others pay upon publication, so you have to wait a little bit longer. And then the range of payment is like. It's huge.

So, for the stuff with like Looper and Bustle at the time, so a few years ago, I got paid eight cents a word. At Luber, I got paid $18 an hour, I think for Bustle, so those paid hourly.

Then when you pitch articles and just do those individual stories, those range from at the minimum getting, you know, like when I worked for Snooki's blog, I got $20 an article. But most stuff ranges from about $100 to $500 an article. There's more you'll get paid more in some stuff. But that's kind of a good range to think of.

Jeremy Deighan
Okay, cool, awesome. So, and it sounds like this would be a very interesting business to get into.

Because you don't have, you know, really any overhead as long as you have, you know, some type of document writing app on your computer or phone or iPad, that's really all you would need. Is that correct?

Amber Petty
Oh, yeah. I mean, for freelance writing, it's an interesting thing because you are starting your own business, you know, you are finding the work and going out there and promoting yourself in different ways.

But also, it's still a little bit like being an employee, you know. You don't have to handle all the aspects of all the paperwork and things like that. So it is a good way to kind of dip your toe into it. And yeah, you just need, I mean, Google Docs is free.

And you can sign up for a free account, you know, with Google if you don't have one already. And a computer. Yeah, if you have just an iPhone, it might be hard, but you could do it. I'm trying to think if there's anything else I've really used. It's helpful eventually to have a website, you know? But you don't even need that at first.

Jeremy Deighan
Okay. And then, when you start writing for these different companies, do they ever have any exclusivity? Thank you. Do they have any of that where you have to write for just, you know, one company and you can't write for other companies? Or if you're writing on that topic, you can't use it in other companies? How does that look like?

Amber Petty
For the most part, it's you can't republish the article somewhere else once it's published. But other than that, it's very rare.

So I've only had exclusivity stuff where I've worked full time as a copywriter someplace. So then I couldn't write copy for somebody in the same industry. But that was it as a freelancer.

No, I've never had that. Because they kind of all get that you have to work for multiple places. Unless they have to put you on staff if they want you to be exclusive. So, as far as that stuff goes, it's pretty flexible.

Jeremy Deighan
Okay, so that gives you the options to go to multiple companies and kind of try different ones, see which ones you like, see what kind of pay rates you'd like, and so forth?

Amber Petty
Yeah, you absolutely get to work a bunch of different places. It's kind of rare. You get to just work for one anyway. So yeah, you'll get to try all kinds of things.

Jeremy Deighan
Okay, awesome. So if someone wanted to get started in this type of business, what would be some of the first steps do you go try to find people you want to write for first?

Or do you write articles to show people samples? Like if you were brand new, and you didn't have anything at all? What would your first steps be?

Amber Petty
I would one, start reading things, we read articles all the time. And so some of it is just like pay attention where you're reading them. And think of places you might like to write for. And if you don't have any samples, that is totally okay.

I started I just had a Word Document of a spec article I wrote where I just wrote something in the style of a place that I might like to write for, and then I sent that, and that's what a lot of my students do.

So, all you have to do is write a spec piece. And that can be between 500 to 1000 words, in the style of something you might like to write for. So when I started, I just wrote a "6 worst video game movies ever." And I've had students write all kinds of different things.

Either satire articles or a list like that or a personal essay. So you just write that up. It can be really simple to look at the places you like just to notice their formatting. Do they tend to use subheads? Is it all shorter pieces of text?

You know, just be aware that you don't need to match it completely, but just be aware. And then, I think it's great to write that up and then post that to Medium, you know, the site where anybody can post articles, but that's a good way that you can just put it online.

You might not get a ton of hits, but it's out there and then as you pitch story ideas to editors, you can include that link to show your writing ability. So that's a that's a good step to get started of noticing where you would like to write kind of writing down ideas. And just getting that simple, does not need to be perfect spec article up online.

Jeremy Deighan
That's a great idea. So you're going out and you're finding the companies that you would like to write for.

So if it's a Looper or how stuff works are one of these other type of blog articles that have these type of writings that you want to do, and then you're creating that sample piece. And putting it on Medium. Medium is free to publish to?

Amber Petty
Yep, it's totally free to publish you. They used to have a program where you could get paid immediately for your articles. You might not make very much now, you need a few followers before you do that, but it doesn't cost anything. And you don't need to join the paid Medium program to post anything. You can always post for free.

Jeremy Deighan
Okay, and that gives you a nice website, place where you can, you don't have to have a blog or website of your own, but it gives you a chance to publish that online and share that with these writers and editors that you want to work for.

Amber Petty
Yeah, absolutely. And you can start getting followers and then you know, Medium does have traffic coming to it.

And though articles don't usually go super viral right away or anything, it's better than even starting your own blog where you have to bring all the traffic in yourself. So Medium just immediately exposes you to at least a few new people, which I think always helps.

Jeremy Deighan
So, let's talk about your course. So you're been doing this for a while you're writing, you're getting some income, and seeing some success in this and then you realize," Hey, you know other people who were in my industry might be struggling with the same thing."

I come from a production background. I used to work in theaters myself, and so I have a lot of friends, when this time came through, they were out of work also. So I understand what you went through and what some of your friends and colleagues also went through.

So, you start thinking about these people and saying, "How can I help them? Let me create some workshops or course and teach them what I've been doing."

So how did that come about? How did you get started? How did you create these workshops and these courses? And what did that look like in the beginning?

Amber Petty
I've had people ask me in the past, you know, "Like, how did you get started in freelance writing and stuff?" And I've made some documents to share with them and everything. And I never thought anything else of it.

And then especially as people, you know, were just out of work. I just thought you know, it's just such a shame that people feel like they just have to keep doing these same kind of service jobs.

And service jobs are great, there's nothing wrong with them. But a lot of people I know hate them. And there's a thing they are probably already pretty good at which is writing and they could use that.

So I first just put together a workshop that was just "10 side jobs that don't suck for actors." And I had writing as a decent part of the workshop. But it was mostly just, "Hey, here's other stuff you could do. Here's other stuff you could do."

And I just sold a short writing coaching package at the end of it, because I really didn't know what I wanted to offer exactly. I was like, "I feel like I could just help people figure out ideas and get stuff together." And because I wanted to just try, I sold those packages.

So, in going through those individual sessions with people, then I found that yeah, most of them were into writing. And I found, "Okay, I'm kind of repeating the same thing every time here." Cool, not a problem. But just how to pitch, how to put stuff together, how to think of your ideas. Neat.

And then also because it's a crowd that's used to taking classes, acting classes, writing classes, what have you. I was like, "Okay, I think putting a class together is going to be the way to go."

So I first put together a four week kind of test version of the class, and then went ahead and put together my whole eight week class, which is what I have now.

Jeremy Deighan
Okay, and that became the freelance writing for creatives class?

Amber Petty
Yeah.

Jeremy Deighan
When you decide to create that course, where were you hosting it?

Amber Petty
I host mine on NewZenler. The first time I did webinars and anything all I used were Zoom, the paid version of Zoom. I used NewZenler to host my courses. ConvertKit for email, and then Acuity, which was free as part of Squarespace.

So those were kind of the four big things I had to pay for at first. I didn't use a wbiner software or anything like that, and then Zendler is just where I hosted the things for my course.

So I kind of wasn't weird bootleg kind of system, combining all those things together. But it worked out pretty okay, and helped me be able to do it more quickly, which mattered to me more.

So, that's what I use. And NewZenler is similar to Teachable similar to Kajabi, it's still in beta, so it's a lower priced option. And I really like it, I have not had any problems with it at all.

And students haven't had any problem with the format. And they like, even just the little things like you get a little screen that's like, "Hey, good job you completed the video. On to the next one," you know, it just kind of helps it move forward.

Jeremy Deighan
Nice. Yeah. And I personally like the bootstrapping method of going about it, because I feel like a lot of people tried to do too much too quickly. And they go and they spend all this time researching the platforms and researching, you know which one's right for them and not taking action.

Where someone like you sounds like, you know, "I'm just going to take action and get the software that I need right now and make it work." And then later on, you can adjust and buy, you know, different software if you need that.

Amber Petty
Yeah. And I do think unless you're a really tech savvy person, and you liked that part of things, then great, like, do whatever you want to do. If you're not, which I feel like most, of course creators aren't the most into that.

I just think it's not, it is not worth the hassle to figure out a million things, you really can do the easiest thing and even if that is just having an email that says, "Hey, email me if you're interested," I mean, that's even a starting place.

You know, I think having an email system like ConvertKit, or whatever works for you, is more helpful. But even if you have to just say whatever, "Here's my email address. Email me if you're interested."

It's just so much better to start getting that real information, then spend all this background time and a lot of money if you get Kajabi, and stuff like that, all that background time when you don't even know if it's gonna work yet. So yeah, I'm a real cobble it together, MacGyver it kind of fan.

Jeremy Deighan
There's also power in the early stages that a lot of people overlook, because everyone wants to get to 1000s of followers and 1000s of students.

But in the beginning, one thing that you have power of before you get that large, is you are more personable toward people. So even if you don't have the ConvertKit, and the active campaigns in the MailChimp, and you're just using your email software provider, you can send these personalized emails to these people who are interested in what you have to offer.

Those people will become fans for life, because it shows attention to detail that they're not just getting some automated response from an email responder that everyone gets, you know?

Amber Petty
Yeah, absolutely.

Jeremy Deighan
Okay, cool. So you had these workshops, and then you have this course. Now, how were you getting students into these workshops and into these courses in these early stages?

Amber Petty
So it was mostly just posting in Facebook groups. So I was either posting for to advertise the workshops, which were really webinars, I mean, they're definitely webinars.

Now at first, they were maybe more information than you'd usually get on a webinar, but it's the same basic format. So either they were, you know, I was posting about the free workshop, in different Facebook groups, and people signing up from there.

And then I put together a big list of, you know, 250 publications that pay writers, and posting, you know, if you're interested in this in Facebook, so I got people onto my email list from there.

And those are the two main ways I've either filled the gap that I got through my email list, and then filled my workshops and courses. And in between I have a twice a week newsletter where I send out open writing jobs and give tips. So I am in communication with people pretty regularly once they're on my list.

Jeremy Deighan
Okay, and just to be clear, the workshops, the webinars, those are free for you to get people into your list and then sell them on the course is that correct?

Amber Petty
On the webinar itself will be a pitch for the course. I mean, every once in a while I do one without a pitch, but for the most part, there's a pitch to the course directly.

And then even if they don't, they're still on my list. They still get free jobs. People have gotten jobs just from my free newsletter. So they're still getting something and then if they're interested, maybe the next round, then they'll buy. So that's, yeah, that's kind of another lead magnet thing.

Jeremy Deighan
When you say round, is it open all year round, or do you have open and closed cart systems?

Amber Petty
Right now it's open and closed carts. So it's a pre-recorded class that's dripped out every week or the you know, lessons are dripped out every week.

But there's also a live Slack group and live q&a is twice a week. So that portion of it, you know, people only have for eight weeks. And so for right now, you have done a lot of launches, which is a lot of work.

So I've launched like every quarter, and I'm in a launch right now as we're recording this, but, that's, yeah, so that's how it is, it's an open cart for about nine days. And yeah, available every quarter pretty much.

Jeremy Deighan
Okay, and then you like that, because you can do these live q&a in Slack channels to where everyone's kind of on the same page? Is that why you do that?

Amber Petty
Yeah, that's why I've done it that way so far to give a little bit of a better sense of community and stuff like that. I hopefully will be moving into a more evergreen model. It will still be a live component to it.

But that was another one of those things where it's like, I don't know how to make an evergreen model right now. And I'm not sure what I would need to change to make sure the class is still getting results for people if I do that, and how my promotions will change.

So I'm kind of sticking with what I know for now and then looking at that change over for the future.

Jeremy Deighan
Okay, cool. Perfect. That's awesome.

Now, we've been talking about doing freelance writing, but you also mentioned that you had moved into a little more copywriting as you went along.

And for anyone who's listening and isn't aware of the copywriting might be more for things like sales pages and landing pages and maybe emails.

So, can you talk a little bit about your experience with copywriting? Like how did you get into doing that? Was it for your own business or were you doing it for other people?

Amber Petty
I started by doing it for other people I was you know, freelance writing and then I was interested in copywriting and seeing about it I applied for a full time job and I told them that I didn't have copywriting experience but told them the other background I have that I could be useful and willing to learn and whatever and then I got that job.

So it's a weird way to start copywriting of just getting a full time job in it. But so that's where I started. And that was for a company that sold online programs. So I did copywriting for them I'd later did copywriting for a makeup company I've done some client work for.

It's been kind of a range it's a little odd to do makeup and courses and clothing and whatever. It's kind of a weird way to do it. Now I really just do copywriting for myself and it was super useful to get to learn that so that you can do it in your own business.

Jeremy Deighan
You know, I don't ever see it as a negative when you are working or experimenting with other types of business models because not every industry does things the same way.

And what I have found is that sometimes you might see a really cool technique that a different industry is using that you haven't thought about implementing in your industry.

And so you know you might be teaching graphic designer programming but this makeup industry has a really cool way of doing something and you think to yourself, "Wow. What if I implemented that system into my own business?" I think that that just expands you even further.

Amber Petty
Yeah, and I do think with copywriting I know a lot of course creators can get really scared of it because it's a lot of work and it seems, you know, it seems like there's so much on the line.

You know my whole business is here, I have to sell it. It's really scary to do for yourself. But I will say that it's not as complicated as it seems. And that's not to discount copywriters. No, it's a definite skill.

But as you're getting started as a course creator It is something you can do and mostly just sounding like a person telling us why, you know, why are you excited? Tell the customer why you're excited about this, why it would make a difference in their life.

You know? You care about this product and if that caring shows through, well that's gonna be good. You don't need to know every single copywriting trick in the book to get started. Half of it is just if you sound like a person and you make something sound cool. Great! You are doing a good job.

Jeremy Deighan
Yeah, let's let's talk a little bit about that for just a moment and any tips or strategies that you could give us would be great.

Because, you know, as course creators, especially if you're creating an online course business and you're an entrepreneur, you have to wear many different hats because you have to create the course you're an expert in the thing that you're teaching.

You have to create the automations and the systems and setting up you know the NewZenlers and the ConvertKits and all these different applications. And then you come to the part where you have to write, let's say, for your landing page.

So, for someone, especially the people out there who are, you know, solopreneurs, and doing this by themselves and can't hire a team or doesn't have a team of writers and editors.

What are some tips, strategies or tricks that you could give someone who is staring at that blank screen of their landing page, and they know they need to write some good copy. They're trying to sell their course, but they just don't know where to get started?

Amber Petty
Something that can be helpful is just talk it out into your phone, or Google Doc now is a thing where it will translate. It'll do with a talk-to-text kind of thing. But start by just talking it out, talk out why you think this is a good idea, talk about how it's helped your other clients in the past, talk about the features and what you're most excited about.

And just talk instead of write, then you can, if you did the talk-to-text or voice recorded it, you can transcribe it however you like. And you'll find within that transcription, there is a lot of good stuff in there already.

And so now, instead of kind of starting with nothing, now you have a baseline, and you're going back and just refining things. And I do feel like it's really easy. And one know that it's harder to write about yourself.

Whenever I write my own sales pages, I'm like, "Oh, no, what do I do?" You know? It's just harder to write your own thing. But you can do it. And by starting talking, that tends to help. And you don't worry about what other people are doing.

If you want to look at somebody's sales page, just to see the kind of format like what questions did they answer where? Where did they put their FAQ? Just kind of format wise, great. Go and look at that, see if that flow kind of feels natural to you. You can use that to help build your sales page.

But otherwise, if everybody's using the word in power, and you don't like that word, don't use it. Just tell people plainly what they get. And half the time that is so much more helpful than anything else.

And use testimonials. If you have any testimonials use them. Because sometimes I'm like, "Did anybody read anything I wrote?" But they definitely read this testimonials. So that'll always help.

Jeremy Deighan
Yeah, testimonials are the gold in marketing.

Amber Petty
Yeah, they really are.

Jeremy Deighan
Very cool. Yeah, you know, and I guess one thing that I've always told people is to always try to speak the language of your audience. I don't know if that's something that you talk about, or that you do.

But you know, trying to and this goes back to really, you know, having conversations with your audience, talking to them, hopping on Zoom calls are having groups where you can communicate, but really understanding the language that they use, I think helps out a lot.

Because if you are using complex words, and your audience doesn't use complex words, because they're in a different type of industry that doesn't, then there's a disconnect, do you feel the same?

Amber Petty
Oh, totally. And sometimes you have to take a step back. Because usually you are, you know, you're not exactly in the same place anymore as your audience and things you've learned since then, have, you know, you forget that not everybody knows all that stuff yet.

So sometimes taking that step back of, "What would I really want to hear?" Because I think thinking of your audience is wonderful. And sometimes if that feels overwhelming, like, "I don't know what they want, I don't know what they're going to say. Now I'm worried about what they're going to think of it too much." And that's hurting.

You can even just think like, well, five years ago, what would I have wanted to hear? And start there and then say, "Okay, now let me double check. Is this sounding like what I'm hearing in Facebook groups? Is this sounding like my clients before? Yeah, it kind of is cool."

Move on. And it's just, it's less make or break than it feels In my opinion, copy, it can always be changed and improved. It always will be. Don't let it stop you from launching.

Jeremy Deighan
Awesome, cool. Yeah, I love that. And that's a good segue, talking about what you wanted to hear five years ago, when you were starting out.

Thinking about the person who's creating their first course or who's in their early stages of their business, and thinking about what you know now going through some of these processes of your own business, your own journey, creating these workshops, setting up these automations and creating your own first online course.

What would be your number one piece of advice that you would give to that person listening right now who's just starting out?

Amber Petty
Well, I would definitely say to connect to your audience and sell something before it's totally made. Don't worry about like your website being perfect or your course even being created or any of that really.

You don't even have to know where you're going to host your course. If you don't actually know that people want it, then it's gonna be a lot harder. So I think spending more time where it is offering something out to people.

Something that's easy, like a free workshop, or maybe a lead magnet or a conversation, maybe you'd have some one-on-one calls. But I think actually connecting to people as quickly as you can to really see what they want and then develop your things from there.

I just think that's so much better because I have seen quite a few people make their whole course, put it online, get this done, films, graphic design, all this fancy stuff. And there's no audience for it yet.

So if you reach out and you build an audience, and you start offering things early, even if they're small, I just feel like that gives you an easier starting place for your course because courses are a lot of work but I think they're so great.

And it's absolutely worth doing and it's especially worth doing when you know you have an audience that's listening.

Jeremy Deighan
Yeah, definitely. And once you get those students going through it and giving you feedback.

It becomes very motivational to hear that you're you're helping people out and that they're using this information.

I mean I know from personal experience I've had people get you know jobs and careers based on some of the courses that I've created and help them learn a skill or a trade so that's really awesome.

I think this has been great episode and I really appreciate you coming on today and sharing your expertise with us and talking about all things writing and creative writing and copywriting.

If more people wanted to learn how to do freelance writing or maybe just find out more information about you and what you got going on where can they do that online?

Amber Petty
Sure, I'm at AmberPetty.com and if you go to AmberPetty.com/250 just the numerals 250, then you'll also get that 250 list of publications that pay.

Because even as a business owner you can sometimes get paid to basically promote your business so. It can be super helpful information to know so if you're interested you can get that and that'll just put you on my email list with more tips about writing every week. So just AmberPetty.com/250.

Jeremy Deighan
Well, that is a great lead magnet. I think I'm gonna go sign up for it myself right now.

Awesome. Amber, thank you so much for coming on the podcast today. I appreciate you and I just look forward to your continued success in the future.

Amber Petty
Thank you so much.

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