Welcome to this week’s episode of the phenomenal career podcast. This week, I’m really excited to have Melody Flumendorf with me today. Can you give us an introduction?
My name is Melody. I’m a copywriter and content writer for female entrepreneurs and small businesses, and I help them to sell and get more clients, but in a way that doesn’t feel salesy. That’s my goal.
There’s so much I want to dive into. I wanted to jump into the journey first, have you always done this work?
No. So my road is probably very intertwined with mindset work. My late father was a copywriter and as a child, I went with him to the agencies and you know, ads were done very differently back then. It was less emotional, it was more about money and power games. It was something that I didn’t like as a child.
I didn’t really understand what he did but knew he got paid for scribbling away. I always wrote stories and I had an old orange typewriter at home and I would write constantly – fairy tales, mainly. I would then create my own library at home. I took all the books I had and wrote what they were about and created the whole library just for myself. I don’t know why. I knew that I had the books. So I was always pretty obsessed with words and with books but I never understood how you can actually turn that into a job.
So, I decided to study languages and I wrote a lot but never considered myself a writer as I had this idea in my head that you have to be super successful from the beginning. I put so much pressure on myself that I effectively stopped writing. The mindset is a big thing for me, because I know what it can do to your life and how it can mess you up.
So, when we started working together, I was asked by a coach all the time, what do you really want to do? And I had no answer. I was still constantly scribbling in journals, but I came up against a lot of mind blocks. After a bit of time, it got much, much easier to write naturally, because I realised I could do it. I started writing everyday and soon enough started gaining clients – it happened very fast, I just needed to believe in myself.
You mentioned you work with small businesses. Why is that?
I think copying content is easiest when you understand the people you’re writing for. I understand small businesses because I’m also a small business. And the other thing is those small businesses are often very agile, you know, when you have big businesses, they want to hold agency, they have to show something for their budget. So they will blow a lot of money, not necessarily on the best thing, but on the thing that looks good.
With small business owners, you don’t really have that because they’re more in touch with their business. They’re behind it, which is why they burn out. You meet so many great people. I work with someone in Canada, and it was so nice to learn about Canada, and what the Canadian businesses are like and how she works – you become friends with your clients. You want these businesses to succeed.
What is a misconception you have found in your field?
There’s this idea that only people who can not write, hire copywriters or content writers, and I think that’s just not true. It might be that most of my clients actually lack the time to write but some say it’s a bit like a therapy session sometimes because there’s a lack of clarity which you are trying to solve. As entrepreneurs, we have so many ideas, and we’re so inspired, and we feel like we want to do this and that and you almost need a person to pull you back down to earth and say, what do you want to achieve? What do you want to do? What does your ideal client look like?
What do people need to consider before deciding to work with a copywriter or content writer?
I think what they have to consider is what they want to achieve. Usually the two things people want, they either want to get more clients, or they want to get more visibility. These can go together sometimes, but can’t be rushed. It’s very important that you know what you stand for. If you have three pillars, three values that are important to you – It doesn’t matter so much if you don’t know exactly what kind of copy you want, but these pillars will help steer the copy.
How long have you been doing this work for?
Well it depends, I had to reshape the business last year due to the pandemic but this did work in my favour because there was a lack in the market freelance small business copywriters. It’s a bit of psychology also – I sit with my clients initially for an hour on the phone and we really go through everything because often people think they know what I need, but once you get talking – they realise they need something else entirely.
What’s your career been teaching you?
It has taught me that a lot of it has to do with self confidence. I always feel you have to take your client by the hand and say, don’t worry, I’ll sort it out for you. I think that’s very important. It’s not only about the writing, it’s giving a client the feeling. You really have to invest a lot of time in that, because then the copy and the content will be much easier to write and gives them the feeling you know what you mean. A lot of entrepreneurs I know are so stressed out and so maxed out already, the last thing they want is to outsource something, and then someone comes back to you every third day with emails asking; do you want this like this or like that? I would say every entrepreneur should have clear boundaries, and not stretch themselves too thin. That’s also important. I’m still learning this, as we all are.
Where can people connect with you to find out more about your journey and your work?
Anyone can connect with me on Instagram, I always have stories there. Every day. Sometimes they’re funny, sometimes they’re not so funny, sometimes I’m very tired but they’re always about content and copy and hopefully have enough educational content for you. Lots of tips on how to write better blog posts, how to audit your website, what you should look for in a copywriter, for example, and they can also connect with me on LinkedIn.