Freelancers come and go. (It’s the nature of the business.)
But I’ve been a full-time freelancer since 1986. And in most of those years, I’ve not only survived, but prospered.
Why? I like to think it’s a simple combination. Great work. And great rates.
You see, I’ve always believed in treating less-than-glamorous projects (the ones freelancers usually get assigned) as if they were potential award-winners. A brochure, a sell sheet, or a catalog may not set an awards-show jury’s heart a-flutter. But in terms of generating sales, it may be the most important work the client does.
And I price my services at somewhat less than the going rate. That’s so I can build long-term relationships and repeat business—rather than being a one-time solution to a desperate emergency.
I work best with three types of clients:
In other words, if you’re a very small or first-time advertiser, I’m not the person you need to be talking to first. You need a small ad agency or design studio to work with you on a project basis. If you don’t know any, , I’ll be happy to recommend one or two.
Typically, I do most of my work off-site. That means, while I may come to your office to discuss a project, meet with an agency’s client, or concept with your art director or designer, I do the nitty-gritty work of writing at my own desk.
Although the rate for off-site work is higher, it saves most clients money. Why? Because you pay only for productive time. For example, if (because of delays in getting information, approvals, etc.) it takes me four days to complete a six-hour job, six hours is all you pay for.
However, for those clients who need it, I also offer my services on-site. If you need a writer to function as a staff member for a few days to a few weeks, this could be right for you. The rate is as low as $40.00 per hour (based on a week of 7-hour days). And, if you like, I’ll bring a network-ready laptop PC with me.
Whether I work off-site or on-site, I’m most often called on to act as an agency copywriter or creative director would. I can come up with concepts with your art director/designer or solo. (If you want to involve an art director/designer at the concept stage, but find yourself short-handed, I can introduce you to some very talented, award-winning people.) Where I do the actual writing is up to you.
If you’re an agency, you’ll find that I clean up nicely and can be taken to any client meeting. My agency clients will tell you that it’s often a good investment to include me in such meetings, since I have a talent for dragging the necessary information out of their clients, politely.
I also offer desktop publishing services. This has been valuable to a number of my clients for long projects such as manuals. You see, when I as the copywriter am also the person placing the text in the layout, I can easily make slight edits to eliminate widows, avoid bad paragraph breaks, etc. The result is that the project gets done faster, with fewer drafts and mark-ups. And, because I use InDesign or PageMaker on the PC (rather than Quark on the Mac), most corporate clients will be able to re-use and modify my files at will.
I’m Windows-based, but Macs don’t scare me—the major programs all work the same. I do most of my work in Microsoft Word, which is a near-universal standard for the exchange of word-processed documents. I also know how to style-tag for Quark and PageMaker. (Please don't ask me to style-tag for InDesign, though; it's infernally complicated.)
For desktop publishing, I use either Adobe InDesign CS or Adobe PageMaker 7.0. As a complement to those programs, I also have Adobe Photoshop CS. And, as this Web site demonstrates, I can turn just about anything into an Adobe Acrobat .pdf file—which many printers specify as their preferred file type and which can be imported into most desktop publishing programs. Of course, any file can be delivered by e-mail, uploaded to your ftp site, or furnished on CD-ROM.
Then give me a call. I think you’ll find I’m a valuable resource to have the next time a deadline is looming.
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