The Freelancer’s Guide to “Mostly” Painless Revisions
You work hard to create copy that will wow your client. You do the research, put in the time to carefully craft the content, and you’re feeling pretty confident when you hit the submit button.
Then you get the notification: Revision Request.
Your heart sinks a little.
Many writers have been conditioned to dread revisions. They seem them as marks of failure, an indication that they somehow missed the mark or submitted subpar work.
Then there are those who see it as an annoyance, viewing the process as an irritating pain in the neck that they would rather avoid.
It doesn’t have to be that way though. Revisions can not only make your copy better; they can also make you a better writer.
“Putting the pedal to the metal isn’t just about accelerating a car; it’s also about putting your career in high gear and cruisin’ in the fast lane towards success.”
We talked to several WriterAccess writers and let them weigh in on the subject. Here it is, straight from the horse’s mouth, how to survive the revision process.
View revisions as an opportunity to provide excellent content.
Revisions can be a way of getting a second chance to make a great first impression. You get to rework the content, often with more focused input from the client. But more than that, you get to demonstrate your professionalism. Your client gets to see how you approach the process, how you handle the feedback and your attitude toward receiving a request for revisions.
Marketing writer Peter H believes that revisions are a great opportunity to create content that is exactly what the client wants.
“Revisions are an opportunity to perfect the copy, making it excel and providing the client with exactly what they came for.” “Revisions need always be more than welcomed and should be a part of every piece.” “Without revisions you miss the opportunity to hit the mark”.
Set expectations early.
Before you make the first keystroke you should communicate with the client about what they expect from you and from the project. Communicating expectations early can set the tone for the entire project by putting client and writer on the same page. Then, if there are revisions the lines are already open and both parties are working together. The revision simply becomes an extension of the project as expectations are crystallized.
According to nutrition, home living, and relationships writer Kaylen J, clearly communicating expectations on both sides makes the entire process go much more smoothly.
“Make the revision process as painless as possible by setting up clear expectations on both sides of the project. Clients should make sure feedback is constructive and includes helpful advice on what could be done better. Writers should ask specific questions when clarity is needed.”
Always proof your work.
Don’t be so quick to hit that submit button. It is always a good practice to take some time and proof your work. Read it aloud to test the flow and double check any facts or statistics. Of course, you should double check for grammar, spelling, and punctuation. These things can easily trip you up and trigger a revision request.
Entertainment writer Veronica R believes that proofing your work before you submit can prevent some revision requests.
“Although it may be painful to look over and edit your work. It’s more painful to get your work pushed back by a client because you didn’t revise it before you hit send. “
Keep a good attitude.
It doesn’t matter how good you are at writing, if your attitude is wrong or off-putting no one is going to want to work with you. No matter how irritated you are at having to do a revision, don’t let it show. Stay positive and work with the client to create copy for them that is exactly what they wanted.
Health & wellness, elder care, and legal writer Stephanie M believes that a good attitude goes a long way.
“There’s a lot to be said about having a right attitude. If you are a freelance writer, revisions are just part of the deal. If you approach it with irritation and frustration, you just make it more painful for everyone involved. However, if you approach it as an opportunity to create something that the client is absolutely thrilled with, to win a client over and get more work, AND to become a better writer, then it’s a win for everyone. Remember, no one is perfect.”
WriterAccess has some of the best freelance writers in the business. Whether you want to hire a writer for your project, or you want to join our team of writers, we are here to help. Call or visit our site today to get started.
Stephanie M is a writer living in East Central, Alabama, but she didn’t always lead such a peaceful, carefree life. A few years ago she made a daring escape from the “cube farm” at a Federal Agency in Washington, D.C. (after eight very long years) where she worked. as an analyst focusing on disaster response, technical writing, program management, and FOIA.