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A podcast where you join me (Colie) as I chat about what it takes to grow a sustainable + profitable business.
CRM Guru, Family Filmmaker, and Host of the Business-First Creatives podcast. I help creative service providers grow and streamline their businesses using Dubsado.
Are you connecting with the right clients within your website copy? In today’s episode, Sara Vartanian joins us to chat about creating copy that sounds like you and how you can achieve it while working with a copywriter! Listen in as we explore the value of templates, how to weave your personality into your copy, and the first step to take when hiring a copywriter!
The Business-First Creatives Podcast is brought to you by CRM and Dubsado expert Colie James. Join Colie each week as she discuss how to build a business that brings you joy and a paycheck! From business advice with fellow entrepreneurs to sharing automation tips and tricks, Colie and her guests are sharing industry trends and resources, along with a little bit of sarcasm.
Sara Vartanian is a launch strategist and copywriter at SaraVartanian.com and host of The Launch Playbook Podcast.
Sara helps business owners use research and data to map their customers’ journey so they can craft a launch experience that makes the people they love serving most feel seen and heard.
Here are the highlights…
[:32] Get to Know Sara
[3:59] Using Templates in Your Business
[7:48] Reevaluating if Your Copy is Working for You
[13:33] Personality & Storytelling
[19:01] How Copywriter Emulate Personalities
[23:29] Working with Non-Content Creators
[30:03] First Steps to Hiring a Copywriter: What is their process?
[31:10] Long-Form vs. Short Form
[42:11] Biggest Fuck Up
The Launch Playbook Podcast: https://www.saravartanian.com/podcast
Copy Template Shop: https://www.saravartanian.com/shop
Review the Transcript:
Colie: Hey guys. Welcome back to the Business First Creatives podcast. Today my guest is Sara Vartanian, one of my favorite Canadians from up north. And today we are gonna be talking about all things messaging and also a little bit of templates. So, good morning, Sara. How are you today?
Sara: I’m good, Colie. Thanks for having me on today. I’m so happy you’re one of your favorite Canadians. . You’re one of my favorite Americans.
Colie: So let’s just get right to it. Tell everybody who you are and who you serve.
Sara: Yeah, I am a launch copywriter and strategist, and what that means is I spend a lot of time writing, researching, talking to people’s clients in order to figure out what is so unique and special about them and what people are saying about them and their topics so we can create really aligned copies.
It’s a beautiful mixture between like what they wanna say and what they’re amazing at, and what their clients need to hear from them in order to make the buying decision. Right. So that’s what I do and who I serve, I usually work with, oh, I have all sorts of names for them, but I would say, um, kind of go-getters, people who are out there taking action.
And oftentimes these are people who are service based business owners who have decided like, I wanna reclaim more time in my life. I wanna go out there and I want to either launch a group offer. A course, maybe some kind of digital product. And we’re often taking, so all that like one to one know-how and repackaging it and serving it up in a way where they can probably reach more people.
Sometimes we’re also taking their one-on-one offers and doing the same thing if they have the capacity for that. Like we’re putting some, like, let’s say like email sequences in place to actually bring people in on a regular basis. So that’s who I work with and that’s what I do.
Colie: Like, I think it’s so fascinating because I don’t know why I am really drawn to copywriters. I think it’s because while I talk about myself and my offers really well, I am definitely not a writing person. I a math and data and statistics are definitely my strong point, but I love talking to copywriters because I feel like good copy really serves you well.
Let’s talk about sales pages. If you land on a sales page, there’s so many components, but I feel like if something that they’re saying in the actual language that they’re using is not like getting my attention and making me nod my head, they’re not get, I’m not gonna hire them no matter how good the product is that they’re selling.
So I just feel like what you do for people who are launching offers is just so absolutely amazing.
Sara: Well, thank you Co, and I love that you brought that up. That’s something that I have found over and over again like happens that so many times people were like 80% of the way there with your coffee, right? You’re like, I know the people. I work with them I really like, I know who I’m serving and you’re doing great work.
But you’re, you know, several steps ahead of them. So the way you talk about something and the way you talk to the person who’s already your customer is different than the person who’s not your customer. And so that’s why we have to do that research and really be careful to like tweak our sales pages so they talk to you where they are when they land on it, not who they are after you’ve already worked with them.
Colie: That is an excellent point, and yes, because I do talk to people who have actually paid me money very differently than I talk to people who I’m trying to get to pay me money. So definitely a thing. I wanna talk to you today about templates because. When people come off on trying to like diy, they’re messaging, and let’s face it, we’re talking about sales pages, we’re talking about launch emails, we’re talking about like freebie sequences.
All of the things that are designated as messaging. Trying to put it out in the world and get the people to like take you up on whatever your offer is. A lot of people look at templates like, well, no, that’s too cookie cutter. It sounds too robotic. So what value do you see in templates as a starting place?
Sara: Oh my gosh. I’m so glad that you asked this question because I feel like there’s a lot of like poo-pooing on templates, like as you’re saying, like, oh, they’re not so great. And I think that puts a lot of really unfair pressure on people who are writing and who are like wanting to do their own copyright in their business or not at a place to hire copywriter.
Or they, you know, they’re spending other money somewhere else. And so then it makes ’em feel like bad for wanting to lean on one and there’s nothing wrong with it. And I wanna say, before I get into answering your question too, Coley is, All copywriters use templates. We don’t start from scratch. We do not like, we’re not opening up a playing Google Doc either, and just like staring at it being like, ah, okay, what should I write?
like, you know, most of us have taken, let’s say our strategic way that we write something like a sales sequence. And for myself, I have all of. Standard kind of things that I write set up in Google Docs as a template. So when I’m like, oh, I’m gonna write a freebie sequence, I open up that template. Now do I use it all?
No, but it sets the framework so I’m not starting from scratch. Right? I can look at it and go, oh, okay. These are the five stories that I need to tell. These are the five CTAs I wanna write. Cool. Now I’m like, now there’s this place I’m starting from now there’s the questions I know that I need to ask.
Right? And I know where I need to focus. I’m doing that as a copywriter. I know most copywriters are doing that too. Really? Again, not looking at a Google Doc. And we’re not just like magic. We all have to start from somewhere. So that’s what a template can do for you, right? It can give you a place to start from.
It can tell you the questions that you need to ask yourself, and a good template will allow you to modify it so that it’s really calling out okay? Like the story that you have. Of Colie’s gonna be different than my story, right? The language we use. Like maybe you have lots of swears, maybe someone else doesn’t, right?
Like it’ll all be your, you know, I’m a Canadian, I’m gonna have you in my word like colour and neighbours and you will not an American, right? Like we can personalize all of that. Um, But what a template will also do for you is it allows you to have like a framework to sell, right? So sometimes we write emails just to write emails, like we tell a story or we teach something, but they’re not always strategically set up to convert.
And that’s why I think a template is so. Helpful when you’re starting out especially, is you’ll start saying, oh, okay, here’s like how I move from a story or a tip and I segue into a sta. And a great template will have that set up for you. So it’s really natural and there should be some, you know, points or trainings or fill in the blank things that will help you do that.
And yeah. Will it sound maybe just like you a hundred percent. Maybe not the first time, but I bet you the more you work with it, the more it will. And what it’ll do is it’ll set you up with confidence so you can say, oh, these are the things I need to write when I’m writing this kind of email. Cool, I can do that next time.
And you’ll be able to free, like, you know, move from that foundational place to run with it on your own.
Colie: Yes. I mean, and I start with templates. Like I know that I’m not writing copy for people, but when I do Doo. Like, I don’t care what industry you’re in. I have certain templates that I already have set up to where if I’m gonna make you a proposal, I’m starting with this. Am I customizing it for your business?
Absolutely. But templates are the key to helping everyone save time no matter who you are and what you do. But we’re gonna go back just a couple steps because you said that, you know, with templates it might not sound like you the first time, but you can get closer and closer. So how many times should people be rewriting their sales copy or you know, what is a good timeframe for someone to reevaluate whether or not their current sales copy, launch copy is actually working for.
Sara: Oh, it’s such a great question. Okay, so. When I say like, templates won’t work for you. Like they won’t be just like you the first time. And it’s probably because it’s not like they can’t, it’s probably because you might be a little nervous about filling it in, or like you don’t feel as free or confident yet to be able to say, oh, this line I don’t love, I’m gonna change it to this.
Right? And the more you write, the more comfortable you get taking liberties to say, and yeah, like, I don’t wanna work with you, so I’m gonna say this instead. The same kind of thing though, right? So the more you write, the more comfortable you get with that. But I would say with any kind of copy, your sales page, your welcome sequence, I like to say how many people have gone through it, essentially.
Like, so when I work with someone on their launch, we’ll, you know, we’ll either like, we’ll go evaluate after their whole launch if it’s a live launch, and we’ll say, okay, like let’s look at the emails, what were opened, what was clicked, where are the opportunities for improvement? You know, maybe there’s an email, there’s no clicks.
We’re like, okay, well why was. Do we only have one link in there or do we, or do we wanna change our links to buttons instead? This time, do we need to make some more obvious, like, you know, click here two, claim your spot, like headline. You know, maybe it wasn’t. The same like stories, bases or other emails.
We’ll change it up. So one, you wanna like go back and debrief. If you know for your welcome sequence, it might be saying, okay, I’m gonna spend three months setting this out there, and in three months I’m gonna go back and I’m gonna look at the numbers and see what’s happening. Are people converting?
Are they opening, are they clicking? And then go through and just like refresh it. I do mine a couple times a year. I’ll go in and do it. Like it might be cuz I have a different offer I wanna switch to at the end of my welcome sequence. It might be because a couple emails I send out just in general for my regular nurture sequence, maybe they did really well and I’m like, wait, those would be great to add to my welcome sequence.
I’m gonna go add them in cuz I had so many responses. So I just look at the thing like, make time in your marketing calendar. So again, like a couple times a year to go back and re-look at things. Your sales page, you’ll probably know pretty quickly. Like if you’re actually getting eyeballs on it and people aren’t filling out applications, they’re not reaching your contact form, then you know that something’s off.
Right? So at that point, I would go back and have a look and maybe it would be talking to some customers, like getting some feedback from it. Looking at your headlines and like your calls to action, oftentimes it has to do with like your headlines and your calls to action. Maybe you haven’t actually explicitly said like, you can hire me here, , here’s how to work with me.
And sometimes it seems kind of obvious, but there’s, but it happens more often than we, you know, you realize when you have someone else look at it, and something else you can do is like, even just have a peer. Like someone that you trust look at it and say, what do you see from this? Like, how does it feel for you?
You can do some user testing, some things like that to find out what’s going on.
Colie: and the reason that I’m asking you this is because so often I feel like creative entrepreneurs. Create something, whether it’s your actual website, your sales page, your services page, your auto response email, your welcome series to your freebie, whatever it is that they’re creating, they create it. And then they just expect it to do its job , without any kind of nurturing, any kind of like evaluation.
Cuz Sara, you know, I’m a metrics person so I was very happy to hear you saying, well, you know, you need to look at each of your emails and figure out what the open rates were and what the click rates. Cause I will be the first to admit. I can’t figure out how to get people to click on my emails. Like I don’t know why my open rates are between 60 to 70% on all of my emails, but I don’t get high click rates.
And the truth is, I mean, am I actually asking them to do something that they feel called to respond to? Because I will say, when I launched my new resources page, And I put that email out there, my click rate was like 45% . And so I was like, okay, so this is something that clearly everyone was interested in.
They wanted to see what was on my resource page. So, but like what can I learn from that and how can I take, you know, the information of how I talked about the resource page, what the actual call to action was, and try to. Modify the rest of my emails to push people to, to take that same level of action because I mean, if I can get 45% of people to click on one email, I can get at least 20% of people to click on other emails.
It’s just making sure. That I am putting good information into the emails and actually asking them to take action because what I realized was often I was asking people to reply, which isn’t really a metric that I can measure inside of my email marketing program. But so, you know, I like that people are taking the time to create these.
I even like, you know, I love when people start with templates, cuz I think everyone should start with templates for everything. But I think that where a lot of people fall short is if they don’t get the intended response, if they don’t get the number of sales that they want. If they don’t have people clicking on their emails, they just assume.
You know, everything was bad and they try to start from scratch instead of figuring out how to massage what you’ve already created to make it even better. So I’m just really happy that you said that cuz I love to talk about metrics that we can use. So when it comes to templates, I know I keep on going back to these templates, but like I’m obsessed with templates, so, How is someone supposed to know if something is a good template, and how much of like your own personality and your own storytelling should you put into a thing that you’re making when you’re starting from a template?
Sara: Right. So I think that you should put as much of your personality and your storytelling in as you possibly can. So, you know, depending on how you feel about yourself as a writer and what kind of stories that you might have to lean on, it’ll. Be more for some people than others. What will happen though is the more you practice and the more you write is, the more you’ll pay attention to it, the more you’ll notice myself.
I keep like a story bank of things. Like in Trello. It’s just in Trello, it’s just like a bunch of stories. I also keep notes on my phone. I’m like, oh, that’s kind of funny. And I start thinking how things could relate and they could be something like so simple. Like I told a story around just like watching my kid at a track meet and how he was like the last runner.
And all these little girls are so cute. All these little girls, he’s in kindergarten. All these little girls came back and started like cheering him on and running with him on the sidelines and he’d been like walking, he’d kind of given up, but when he saw them there cheering him and running with him, he started like running too
Sara: and it was so cute. I gotta get almost tey with it, but I had so many responses to this. It was just like the simple thing that I hadn’t really connected to marketing, but then all of a sudden I was like, wait. It’s kind of like why we need like a hype squad, right? Like we need people to help cheer us on and get us to the finish line when we are in the middle of that launch and we’re like, oh my god damn.
Like no one’s gonna buy this. Like, what have I done ? We need some people to
rally exactly like what? I need people to rally around you. So like I connected, you know, that simple thing to marketing. So the more that you start paying attention to these little stories and just start thinking, you know, the more you can start connecting them to like, whatever you’re.
So in a template it should allow you, it should give you some suggestions for like a type of story you might wanna tell. Or if you know a story, like talk about like a TV show you like that made you think of X, right? Cause sometimes there’s like a TV show that makes us think of something, or just like a funny moment that was about whatever the topic was about.
And then you s segue to the story. So there should be some prompts in there to help you. Extra, like, you know, excavate those stories or those ideas. And then what I would do is once I’ve written it according to like the template, I would go back and say, and like just read it through and say, okay, does this sound like me?
Read it out loud. So you’re like,
Colie: Read it out loud. Yes,
Colie: it out loud.
Sara: And then you like, say like, okay, like, you know, actually I would never say this word to like cross it out. Here’s the thing. You can get rid of any word that you want in a template. To make it more your own. What you want to keep is the framework, right?
That is what is the, like the bones, the skeleton. That is the piece that is going to help you convert. Like you wanna go from that story to that segue to make your point, to make your sale, right? Like, and you’ll see a really good template, we’ll call out those sections for you. So you say, okay, here’s the stuff that I can’t, like f with , you’re just like, I need this in this order.
But if I wanna use a different word, that’s not gonna kill your email, right? If you wanna like say something different, if you like wanna say like, that’s the bomb, or That’s awesome, however you wanna talk, that’s not gonna destroy your conversions, right? I mean, other than people maybe not liking your language or liking your story, and then maybe they’re not your audience.
Okay, bye. They can go right
Colie: I mean, Sara, you’re, you know, you’re talking my language. I don’t know if I’ve actually told you this, but every time I curse on Instagram, my mother sends me a text message and she says, Hey, Colie, you, you said the word shit. Did you mean to Yes, mom. Absolutely. I’m meant to say the word shit. And she’s like, you know, I just, I’m not sure that you wanna do that on your business page.
And I’m like, mom, if someone’s offended when I say shit, they’re probably not my client. And I don’t really care if they pay me money. And, you know, it’s like a thing. It’s like once I realized that the more real I was with my audience, whether it is on Instagram or in my newsletter or on my sales page, I realized that brought me higher conversions because often when I was trying to tone down my language in order to quote unquote sound more professional, it lost.
Like my vigor, which I can’t even believe I’m saying the word vigor, but it like lost my personality and how I feel about the services that I’m selling. And so then it wasn’t really calling on people to actually take me up on my offer because I didn’t really sound very convinced when I was trying to clean up the language and not cuss when I’m talking about how fucking awesome I am at making your Do sodo work for you.
Sara: Yeah, you are
Colie: The personality just comes out. So, I mean, I do laugh when people say that, but this totally brings me to, cuz we’ve talked about templates, we’ve kind of talked about diy. I do want to segue into thinking about hiring someone for your copy, because I will be the first person to say I thought for a very long time that no one could make my copy sound as good as I could, because how are they going to sound like me? It is definitely one of those questions, and so Sara, I’m gonna pose this to you because I feel like at least initially you and I have very different personalities, right? I’m very loud, I’m very obnoxious. I like to cuss. I don’t know how many martinis you have, but I have quite a few. So how is it that if I want to hire a copywriter, can I hire someone that doesn’t have the same.
Personality or vocabulary that I might use when I’m talking to my audience, like how does that work?
Sara: Yeah. Oh my gosh. That is a question that comes up a lot because people are like, do they need to be the same as me in order to get it? And so I would say that a, a good copywriter does not need to be the same as you. And when I say a good copywriter, what that means is you want someone. Who’s gonna do research, right?
So not only research into your audience and like what they care about and what they’re saying and what stages they’re at, and their awareness cycle of buying. When they come to you, you want ’em to actually research your voice, right? And like what you are about. If they don’t ask you questions around like, Your quirks, your personality.
Do you do the swears? Like, you know, what are you, what are you listening to? What are you drinking? What TV show are you binging late at night? Like, what is something weird? You don’t really want people to know what you’re willing to share.
Sara: Like if you don’t, if you don’t ask people questions like that. As a copywriter, if you don’t have your copywriter asking questions like that, then that to me is a red flag, right?
Like you want to know those things. So one, you wanna make sure your copywriter is asking those questions. So one, like for myself, I do like a, a guide to you questionnaire and it’s constantly evolving and getting honestly, like probably sillier and more ridiculous. But the fact is like the more ridiculous it is, the better that I can literally pull stories and examples from things that you talk about.
Um, two, the more you create content, You know, the easier it is for us. So like Cole, you, you are on Instagram, you go, you have videos, you do your podcast. So the more you have that, the more of content creator you are, the more, again, your calculator should be able to go through that and listen. So I do that for my clients.
Like I’ll go through and listen. . So I’ll get the guide first, like that. I ask the questions, I ask them. Then I’ll go through and I’ll listen to a bunch of episodes I ask them to share with me. And the ones are like the most them, the ones you’re excited about. I’ll also still go through on my own, but I like to see like where they draw my attention.
And I’ll start like writing down like phrases. I’m hearing, like things that they laugh out loud themselves about , like stuff like that. Like the stories that they’re telling, when they’re swearing, how they’re swearing. And even like, maybe even how they spell those swear words, if you are swearing right, like the emojis you’re using, I will start crafting that all down.
So I have like a mini brand voice guide essentially with like a bank of stories that I can draw on. So if you have that, you can write anything. For anybody. And so that’s what I do and that’s what, like, I hope that if your collaborator’s not asking you those questions is not digging into your, to you, whether you’re creating content or not, then again, that’s a red flag because they will not be able to sound like you.
They do not ask these questions and no, um, I’ve had many clients who’ve gotten back emails who don’t send anything like me, who are very extrovert, who are like, oh my gosh, like these emails are so great. It’s such a funny story. And she was like, I think you sound more like me than I sound like me.
Colie: Well, that’s when you really know you’ve done your job.
Sara: You know people, and you want, what you want is like people who can’t tell, right? They can’t tell the difference.
Colie: I mean, and it’s funny that you say that because you’re talking about this from like a copyright writing perspective, but let’s, let’s think of me as a photographer, like I don’t edit my own photos anymore. I am currently not making my own films, and so. When I get a client that’s like, oh my gosh, my film is so amazing.
Like, they can’t tell that I didn’t make it for them. So that’s like, it’s the biggest compliment because that means that I’ve hired, you know, a filmmaker that is doing just as good if not better job than I would’ve done if I was making their film. So, I mean, yeah, it’s, it’s all about who you. and like you said, what kind of information you give them because I had never really thought about you guys having to like really dig into our voice.
I’ve always been fascinated with customer research as you know, like I love that copywriters are actually talking to your clients to figure out how they talk about your service, what they were looking for when they hired you, all the things from their perspective. , but that sales page also needs to be written in your voice.
And so knowing that, you know, if I have all of this content and you can basically like bend it like Netflix , you can get a pretty good, you know, solid footing on what it is that I would say and how I would say it. But Sara, what do you do for clients who are not as extroverted as me? Because I’m very good at putting myself out there, you know, Instagram podcasts, all of that, but like what do you do for your clients that don’t have as. content as I would as like a content creator.
Sara: Absolutely. So that’s where that questionnaire really comes in in the beginning where I ask a lot of questions and then what I usually do is I’ll have like, I guess I call like a storytelling and strategy call and we’ll get on the call and I’ll just start asking them more questions around the things we’ve talked about.
So I’m like, okay, like which show do you like to watch? Like tell me what you’ve been watching lately and then I’ll kind of dig in further. So I know like one of my clients was a lawyer and she really isn’t like an extrovert. She’s not putting out much stuff out there. Also, what she’s putting out there is like very legal.
right. But she’s actually like, but she’s like, but she’s fun as well. Like, she’s like a fun, she’s had a fun personality. When you talk to her, she’s like, really? Down to earth. She’s not, not a scary lawyer. She’s like, you wanna be best friend with this lawyer, right? So when we were talking, she started talking how she loves Walking Dead.
And I was like, I love
Colie: Oh, yes.
Sara: Obsessed. Very sense. Almost ending anyways.
Colie: We only have a, we only have a few more episodes. Don’t remind me.
Sara: and I’ve gotten my 13 year old son into it with me , so no. So we
Colie: I don’t think Chloe would ever watch it. She’s 12, but I, I don’t think she’d watch The Walking Dead
Sara: My, my son is like really into horror stuff, so that’s the only reason my other sons like, do not come near me with friends. anyway, so she like ends up, we turn out like talking about Walking Dead and like her favorite character in it. And from there I was able to like write this whole email around like I. Preparing for the zombie apocalypse is actually like, why? You wanna be prepared as a like, as a like in law, right? You wanna have like your contract, your terms and conditions, right?
You want all that stuff there so that you’re ready when stuff goes sideways, you know, and you wish you could have maybe prepared that zombie apocalypse and we like told this whole story from a scene and we’re able to bring that in and compare that to. Again, like the law. And that’s really just cuz we had a conversation around like, what you watching?
What do you care about? What are you reading? And I just ask more and more questions and I’m like, listen, you’re just gonna show up. I’m gonna ask you a ton of questions. Like what music did you listen to when you were 16? Did you Walkman CD player? Like. Like, tell me about it. Like were you listening to like, what was it, you know, what was making you like, go to your room and like, what was it for me?
Like the , the song I used to put on my pager? Oh my God. The pager in school song did I put in my page? I was emotional about my b
Colie: We totally just dated ourselves, Sara. It’s totally okay.
Sara: I’m willing to do it . So you ask for those kind of things and like, you know, what snacks are you having? And so like, I had one client who just like, I, I just make, I make these little comments around like, I love salt and vinegar and my favorite thing is like, Hot water bottle blanket in the winter.
Cosing up with a book and like licking salt and vinegar chips. And she was like, oh my God, I do that too. And she freaking hired me . She’s like, no one else talks about
Colie: one way to connect on a sales call. Good
Sara: So no, it was in my emails, but made her like, get in a call with me and hired me. She’s like, you had the like the, she’s like, you just dropping these little bits of like, you and I knew who you were and I felt comfortable with you right away, and that’s all you really need to do.
So again, you’re copywriter, even if you’re not creating. Content out there just needs to ask you questions and listen and they should be able to like dig deeper. Cuz I have had people who are like, I don’t know, I don’t watch a lot of tv. Like, I don’t really know. I don’t really do much. And I’m like, okay, cool.
So like I’ll just, you know, go layers deeper, layers deeper following the conversation. I have never found anyone, you know, introvert, extroverted, who I cannot find a handful of stories about to share. Yeah, and I wanna say though, too, Colie, like one of the best things you can do is once you do find a copywriter that you connect with, try to keep working with them over and over again.
Colie: Cause it’ll only get better. Yes.
Sara: It gets better. And then also for you too, like let’s talk about saving time. You don’t have to go back and do that whole process all over again, right? like, which is, which is time consuming. But it gets better and better the more you work with them. They get to know your voice. You can trust them further.
You develop more of a relationship. It becomes so much easier and less time consuming. And then also, again, carries that thread of those stories through all of your copy. So if you like your copywriter, try to stick with them.
Colie: And that just totally reminded me. So one of the little pieces of social media content that I have on my Instagram is there’s a video clip somewhere on my feed and it says, you know, photography clients, I hope you like me because once you hire me, you can’t get rid of me. Like, I’ve got this, I’ve got this thing where I tell my clients like, no, this is not like a one night stand.
Like I’m intending on us long term dating, possibly getting married. All of the good stuff, and the right people laugh at.
Sara: You’re gonna change your Facebook status for this, right?
Colie: Yes. The wrong people are like, oh no, I’m just interested in you just photographing, you know, our newborn this one time. And I’m like, oh yeah, no, no, cuz I’m not gonna put forth all the energy that it takes to get to know your family, get to know your children, get to know how you met your husband.
Like all the nitty gritty stuff that I put a lot of effort into learning about my clients if it’s not gonna serve me long term. I wanna know all these things so that you know, you can be inviting me to the birthday parties and like all of these things. And so long term relationships, no matter if it’s with your copywriter, with your photographer, with your website designer, whatever it is, those long term.
Relationships will really serve you in your business because as you said, the products that they’re getting for you can only get better as they work with you over and over again. They get to know you. I mean, because think about it. I’m sure you follow all of your clients on Instagram, Sara, don’t you?
The ones that are on Instagram.
Sara: I for sure do.
Colie: And so even in between like working with you, like you’re seeing the stories that they’re putting out. And I’m sure that when someone comes to like rehire you, I’m sure at least one or two times you’ve had this, oh gosh, I remember a few months ago where you told this story.
This totally needs to be part of your new welcome series or part of your new sales page, or you know, whatever. Whatever
Sara: I absolutely do that. And in a non hopefully creepy sounding way, I will totally save like their Instagrams. Like if I’m like, oh, this is such a good one, and I’ll save like in there cause I know I’m gonna come back to it. Right. As you’re saying, or like I’ll, and I subscribe to their podcast, their email newsletters, same thing.
I’ll just flag them so I’m like, oh this is a good one. And I just put it goes into a folder after I read it. But, cuz the more we can do that, you’re right, the easier it becomes and the more like natural it is all the writing.
Colie: For you to sound like them.
Colie: so, If someone is looking for a copywriter to help them with their launch, their website, whatever it is, what’s the first thing that they should do when they’re going out into the world to do their research in order to hire a copywriter?
Sara: I would say, I would look at their services page and say, what is their process like? How are they going to do those two things? How are they going to talk to your audience, connect with your audience, make sure the messaging is on point, and how are they going to get to know who you are as a human if they don’t address those things.
Again, I’m gonna say the red flag thing. I’d be like, say, I’d be wondering about that, and you can definitely ask them on the call if you get in a call. Myself, I probably wouldn’t get a call the copywriter who did not address those two things right off the bat, cuz I know how important they are and I know that they’re difference between conversion.
There’s the conversion, which is around the messaging and talking to the clients, and then there’s a connection which is all about you, right? You need those two things in order to make the sales. So look for people who are talking about that. Nice.
Colie: Awesome. So Sara, we’ve talked a lot about templates and when it comes to like a sales page template, like how long does a sales page really need to be in order to convert?
Because I feel like this is a question that like, you know, long form, short form. Do you have an opinion on that?
Sara: I do, but it’s gonna be one that people hate. It’s like that whole, it depends situation. Like I wanna like vomit as I’m telling that to you, . But let’s say this, okay, so sales page is like, you can stretch outlook in accordion or you can shrink it, right? Depending on what it is. So I wanna say the more expensive the offer is, the more.
People need to hear from you in order to make that decision. However, it also depends on how like much they know you. So are you trying to run ads, the sales page to a cold audience, they’re gonna need a lot more information. A hundred percent. They need a longer forum sales page. They need a little, a lot more.
Because they’re gonna try to get to like no one trust you and buy from you really fast,
right? Like, so you know, you’re probably not selling like a $2,000 product right off of Facebook ad you’re maybe doing more of a low ticket type of offer under $500, let’s say. But again, lots of information for those people.
I would say anything in that couple thousand dollars range, again, you want longer because there’s people who are different kinds of buyers, right? And so, Like, so I wanna pause here and say I am, I, I’m, I’m for long form sales pages for most things. Overall, because there are the different types of buyers, right?
They’re the people who are like the quick decision makers and they’re just gonna be like, oh yeah, this sounds like what I want. Okay, here’s the price. Cool, I’m in. I’m gonna book a call or I’m gonna apply. And then there’s the people who are like slower decision makers. They need more information. Like what is the guaranteed, I have a lot of questions.
Do other people like this, like what are the testimonials here? Is there anyone they worked with who was like, Right, and they’re gonna wanna see that stuff. So you wanna have your sales page talk to the quick decision makers, the ones who need more time and have more questions. The ones who wanna know everything about you before they book.
So that’s what you wanna do on a sales page. So I would say like that’s where the long form stick, you know, comes into play. But really you wanna be answering things like. Like, what is, what am I getting? Is there guarantee, is there some way that you can reverse the risk for me here? If I don’t like, like can I do an undo button or something?
And if you don’t, that’s okay. But like, they wanna know right
Colie: wanna know up front.
Sara: just tell me like, what’s the payment, you know, options, again, samples, testimonials, like if you can like Coley for photography, you, I’m sure you have pictures that you’ve done so people can be like, oh, they can imagine what’s gonna look like for me.
I love to actually have like, Samples of sales pages that I’ve done. So they can say, oh, like this is what it could look like. Right? So they can have a peak and like, and that envision that. And then you wanna connect in the beginning to like, what, like why they’re landing on your page right then, right?
And so that’s where you can kinda lengthen or shorten it. Like do they need a lot of like. Storytelling. They need a lot of talk around why right now is the time for you and like, what have you been trying to do on your own? And okay, here’s the actual solution. Or is it more quick? Like they’re like, okay, I just wanna say like this is what I’m looking for and now let’s move to the offer.
So that’s gonna depend on where your customers are and sort of like that buying journey and how much they know you already. Some answers your question, but I’m gonna just recap with saying long form. Most of the time I would say, because there’s different kind of buyers.
Colie: So I’m just curious cuz I’m a nosy. Nelly, what kind of buyer are you?
Sara: Whew. That’s a really good question. So I. I am decisive once I know somebody. So I have probably like followed someone for a while. I’ve known I wanna work with them. I’ve definitely probably like been through a launch of theirs and not purchased, or like a, let’s say an opening of like slots to work with them.
And I have just like followed and watched for a while. So I feel like I know them before I buy from them. Part of that has evolved because I think in the beginning of. You know, being in business, I was like hot to buy stuff, like,
Colie: you probably got disappointed one time and were like, Nope, no more of
Sara: and just like spent too much. Cause everything was like, oh, that sounds good, that sounds good.
It was like shiny object too. And so part of what I did for myself was I actually made myself slow down through a sales cycle. So I’m like, oh, they’re opening this time. I’m not gonna buy this time. But if I still, if I still want it next time, I’m totally in. Um, and that was a little bit of me like trying to balance like , how free I was with my wallet
Sara: But also like, I like to get to know people I’m gonna work with. What about you?
Colie: I love, like I am one of those people who needs to see all of the information, but I don’t necessarily care about each detail. I hope this makes sense. So for example, When people say, oh, people don’t read contracts, uh, no. Coley reads every contract. And sometimes people that I work with, I have to like tone it down to where I don’t send it back to them and be like, okay, so this doesn’t make sense to me and I don’t know about this.
Like I could be that nitpicky person. I don’t, I just remember that, you know, contracts aren’t usually written by people. They are written by lawyers, and the people who are buying them really don’t understand what’s in them. They just know that they need all that information. So I try to give people grace, but I am one of those people that reads a contract from beginning to end.
I do the same thing with a sales page, but like you said, If I know someone, I’m just really trying to skim it to make sure that, number one, I’m not the first person that’s paid them to do this, cuz I have a really big pet peeve against, you know, like me paying you actual money as your Guinea pig. Like that’s a thing and it’s not a thing that I wanna participate in.
So I reach your sales page to make sure that you have that social. I also read your sales page just so that I am clear on what it is that you are going to deliver. Because like you said, if it goes sideways, I wanna know what I was actually paying for versus what you delivered to me. So I don’t really know where that puts me on the buying spectrum, but that’s how I look at someone’s sales page.
And then there are some people. You and I both know someone that I hired, her sales page was way too long, had way too much information. I was just like, lemme just give her, you know, $2,500 and let’s just move on to like the next stage. Um, but I definitely bought from her because I knew her. I knew what it was that she was gonna deliver, even if I didn’t think that that was clearly articulated in the sales page.
So, I mean, I guess I’m a different kind of buyer depending on how well I know the person making the. And also how desperate I am to get that problem solved. Because I think if it’s something that I feel like I could do myself, but I’m just trying to pay someone else to like save time, I wanna make sure that you’re gonna do it at least as well as I would versus if I’m trying to pay you to do something that I am incapable of doing.
I think those are two completely different things. What do you.
Sara: I think they’re two completely different things too. I’ve hired, like, as a copywriter, I’ve hired other copywriters before when I’ve been sort of desperate for a launch or something I’m doing. And there’s been a couple times that I’ve been burned from it, right? Where I’m like, wait, they don’t, they didn’t do the things that I know are important.
Like, they didn’t ask me anything about myself at all, . Um, and at the end I was like, are you going to, um, do you wanna know some stuff
Colie: and they were like, no.
Sara: They’re like, oh, did you wanna tell me? Yeah, let’s talk about a couple things that maybe you wanna include in here. And so like, you know where I got like, something that was pretty okay.
I had to like, I had to go in and spend like, still
several hours, like like a lot of massaging. And so yeah, sometimes it can be like, That they huge. I just need this now and I’m gonna kind of settle or get it. You know, obviously if I know someone ahead of time who, you know, is on my radar for like what I might need down in the future, that’s even better cause I’ll feel more comfortable.
But yeah, um, I agree. If I something I can’t do at all, I then that’s where I wanna also know exactly like, what am I getting, ? Like what is the end result of this? And am I clear on that end result?
Colie: Yes, and I’ve actually had conversations with a couple of people that I’ve hired. I’ve been like, okay, so I hired someone to do this in the. . And while what they did was great, I thought I was going to get this and didn’t. So is this something that you are going to do for me in your process? And you know, most of the time they tell me, oh yeah, sure, this is something that I do in my process.
Or, you know, that’s not something that I normally do, but I’m happy to do it for you. Or they just tell me no, that that’s not what they do. But I have learned. Being in business for 10 years and like now towards the end of, you know, closest now. I mean, I pay lots of people to do lots of things. I, as a buyer, have gotten very clear on questions that I should be asking before I, you know, Type in my credit card information and hit by.
And you mentioned that you kind of put yourself back. I will say I have done that several times this year. Like in August, I was like, no, maybe it was July. In July. I was like, I can’t pay anybody for anything. If I still need it in August, I can pay them in August. But like I do get so quick to be like, oh no, they can solve this problem for me.
Let me just pay. When sometimes I’m paying for things that I might not necessarily need. It’s just things that, you know, I would like to be done and crossed off a list. So I do put myself on timeout sometimes.
Sara: sometimes we need to, right? Like we need to say like, is it just because I’m in? Am I maybe tired and burnt down? There’s other stuff going on and I actually, cuz there’s other things that could solve this that don’t cost $5,000.
Colie: appreciate, I do appreciate my bookkeepers
Colie: Cause you know, now that I have bookkeepers twice a year, they’re, you know, well I get reports every month, but twice a year they legitimately send me a list of like my recurring payments. Colie, do you still need all these things? If you don’t, we should cancel them this month.
And I’m like, okay, let me go through all these memberships that I’ve signed up for and make sure that they’re still like, you know, providing value to me or that I got what I thought I was gonna get when I joined them.
Sara: Oh my gosh. I do that on a quarterly basis actually with my va. She has like a list and we go through and we’re like, okay, yes, no, yes, no. We’re using it. It’s gone. Cause there have been some times at the end of the year when I’ve been like, what is this thing here
Colie: am I still paying for this thing? I
Sara: I have been,
Colie: it like, and it just renewed for another year.
Sara: Tier, tier, tier.
Um, I like how you called out though, the fact that like we really wanna know the results. And that’s something that, I have taken to including on sales pages is really clearly saying at the end of our time, like, you know, 30 days, six months, whatever it is, the day we work together, you will have X, X, X, and x Like really explicitly calling it out.
Colie: Well, there’s a word for that. Customer receipt. Sales receipt, that’s a, that actually has a wor that has a name. And I don’t have one on my course page right now, by the way, which is something that I really need to like, you know, this is, these are the things that you’re paying me for and these are the things that you will be able to do at the end of this course or whatever.
Yeah, no, now I’m curious. I’m gonna have to actually look up what that is. But someone said it in a recent podcast and I was like, I am not doing that. I need to do that. No,
Sara: the value
Colie: it wasn’t the value.
Colie: She had a different term for it. It was a term that I had never heard. Yeah, this is the moment this is the question that I asked all of my audience. So I want you to tell us, what was your biggest fuckup in business? What did you learn from it? And how has it affected your business?
Oh, my gosh, Colie, okay, so like just going through the catalogue of my brain of all the fuck ups. Because I’ve been in business for a good while now. There’s definitely been a range. But the one that stands out to me is where I have gone back to a customer when it was time to move on. So I’ve been burned by them. And I went back. So there have been this customer. This client back when I was doing I used to do social media and content management before I moved into launch. years ago. Fascinating. Yeah. And well, all my clients were launching and that’s how I ended up starting evolve into it. But anyways, I was working this client and she would like constantly like not show up to calls would always be like something major, like, dog bar after there’s a flood or like my kids here. Like there’s always something going on. And I realized stuff happens a lot. I have stuff happens a lot and like in terms of my life, but it was like constant. So she wouldn’t show up, you know. And then when we did, it would just like these long drawn out like calls, we wouldn’t actually get to anything. I do the work I send it to her she would like take so long to approve it. Sometimes. Sometimes I think she needed for would pass. And she’d be like, Oh my God, we didn’t get it out. And I’m like I did it was sitting in like I tagged you, I called you like I did all the things. And then she was costly pushing my boundaries. Like I went on my first holiday with my kids. Like we hadn’t gotten a holiday for like a year because I was in my early days, my business, we had no money. Finally, we had like cargo for days really. I going to be present to mother. And then of course she’s telling me something like I really want to do this, like back to school lunch and like, Can you do it? And then like, I was so worried at the time of losing her that I said yes, of course, like, my husband’s taking the kids out to the pool. And then like the beach, he’s like, Don’t worry, I’m like, okay, cool, cold. This is all for like $500 a month, which makes me want to cry from my old self. Because this was in the early, early, early days of my business, like, you know, six months later, I was charging like $30,000 for the same thing. By the way. I did learn I got me, I got me a coach. Change that, but those are the early days, but I really hadn’t needed that $5 So much at the time, but I was almost willing to break all my boundaries for it. So eventually, she ended was like she ended up telling me like I actually can’t afford to finish out this contract with you. So we’re gonna have to pause and I said okay, fine, which wasn’t supposed to do. And then she came back said she want to like double what she wanted for me. We raise the price, did all the work. Then she told me that like she was unhappy and then it was actually changing her whole plan. couldn’t pay me again. I did all the work. I sent her invoice refused to pay me and they took her back a third time down the road. Oh, my gosh. Right. Like it was like a lesson. Yeah, it was a lesson I had to learn. Obviously, it did not go well. And this Time I laughed. I was like, actually, what am I doing? Like this isn’t working. But so basically, the fact was, I kept allowing someone to like break my boundaries, railroad me, you know, not actually like, what take my content and then say like, Oh, I didn’t actually use it. So I can’t pay you for it. I’m like, Well, I created it. I did it. You signed the contract. And she would just refuse. And so she tried to come back a fourth time. I didn’t say yes, she still sort of preferably in my business world. I won’t name names here, because she worked with a few of my friends, my peers, who had some also stressful. And I’m like, leave
away walk away. Yeah.
But yeah, for me, that was that was my biggest one. And it comes back to me whenever I have odd clients situations come up, where I’m always like, the gut check, right? I’m like to have one of these situations. And then, but what I will also say is, what it made me do is it made me tighten up my contract. Right, it made me get those candy Mills, it made me make sure I had things like, if you do not respond, I will reach out to you one time. And I will remind you, and after that that’s on you. If you come back in three months, there’s a restart fee. Like I put all of those things into boundaries itself. Yes. And that has been really important. Because I will say like, as the person I am, I will carry like guilt for someone else, even though it all feel bad. And that badness will make me like work on weekends and do things if I don’t have protection for myself. So like, if someone like dips out and doesn’t come back for six months, and then they come back and they’re like, Well, I want to do this this week I had this plan. I’ll start feeling guilty, like it was my fault. They’re like, Well, you didn’t reach out to me, I’m like, well, actually, there’s three emails I sent you. And I tagged you in this and like I did my due diligence, like it’s onto you. And so I’ve had to protect myself from that, because I can very easily get sucked into like the I’m so sorry.
Well, Sara, I am glad that you tightened up your contract, you got some solid boundaries after that. And I mean, I know you don’t charge anywhere near $500. So I’m happy to have that pricing conversation. As Awesome. Thank you so much for sharing that. I feel like everyone needs to know that every the reason that I ask all of my guests this question is I feel like everybody needs to know that other people have had major fuck ups and have just recovered just fine. Because I feel like sometimes when we have something that’s like really got us down in our business, like we can’t really see the other side of it. So the one thing that I want for people to get from these fuck ups that people talk about is not only what happened, but how it changed your business and how you will not let that happen again. So Sara, in closing, thank you so much for sharing that it was so awesome to have you on my podcast. I will have to have you back again because I love chatting with you every opportunity that I get. Thank you guys.
Colie: All right, Sara, that, that, that was like a weird segue, but you know, we’re here now.
I want you to let our listening audience know where they can find you on the internet.
Sara: Yes, on the internet. You can find me at saravartanian.com. I’m sure Colie, you’ll put that in like your show notes so they can see how to spell it. But you can check me out there. I’m over on Instagram as well at saravartanian and I also have a podcast, the Launch Playbook podcast, which you can find me all the places you love to tune in.
Colie: Sara has such a soothing voice on her podcast guys. I am also like legitimately obsessed with her podcast. I feel like in the last month I’ve listened to at least 20 episodes. I mean, that’s a lot, right guys? But I will say, you know, taking Chloe back and forth You are usually the first podcast that I tune in for, for the week and then, you know, the others follow. But Sara, thank you so much for coming on my podcast. I really appreciate it. And you know, next year you’ll be back on to talk about something else, I’m sure. But guys, that was it. Thanks for listening.