Welcome to The Guest Client Experience

Over the next 6 weeks, you'll gain hands-on copywriting experience with a real client, create work for your portfolio, and receive personal instruction and coaching along the way from some of Australia's top copywriters.

This is your dedicated web page that contains everything you’ll need for the duration of the course. Zoom links, recorded video sessions, updates etc.

Please bookmark it and please don’t share it with anyone as it will contain private information about you and your colleagues.

Let's go! 

Meet your colleagues:

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Your assigned team leaders:

Group A: (name) (email)

Group B: (name) (email)

Group C: (name) (email)

Meet your clients:



Dates, times and Zoom link:

  • Tuesday November 8th 
  • Tuesday November 15th 
  • Tuesday November 22nd 
  • Tuesday November 29th 
  • Tuesday December 6th 
  • Tuesday December 13th 

Sessions run from 7pm (AEDST) to 9.30pm (2.5 hours)

Join Zoom Meeting:


Your weekly recorded sessions:

Week 1: Welcome to the programme and an introduction to working with real clients. 

Insert Video

Download the PowerPoint slides.

Pre-recorded session 2: How to work with clients + take a creative brief (part 1)

‘How to take a creative brief’ video and slide deck

I encourage you to watch these videos between now and next week as they will give you confidence as to how to take a brief. We covered a lot of it last night but you can watch these at your leisure.

Part 1: The creative brief video and slides

Part 2: The creative brief video and slides

Resources from Session 1:

‘The Creative Brief’ template’

This document can be used as your cheat sheet to remind you what to ask the client. Work your way through it methodically if that suits, or you can jump around. When you get to Target Market section, use the ‘Customer Persona’ template to go deeper.

Download it here.

‘Customer Avatar/Persona’ template

If a client doesn’t know who their target market is, ask them to think about the last person who bought from them, or ask them who would they like to have buy from them. A bad answer is ‘everybody. We cannot write for everybody. It is normal for a business to have around 3 personas for each product. If that is the case, ask them to identify the most valuable one to them and write for that persona.

Download it here.

Sample Personas template

This is a summary of personas I have created that I used to help me write copy for the Australian School of Copywriting. This is not based on heavy research, but just my own instincts. It helps me work out who I am writing for, and identify features and benefits to include in the copy.

Download it here.

‘Features and benefits’ spreadsheet

This is a document you can use once the briefing has taken place to collate all your features and benefits. You are welcome to send this to the client and ask them to nominate the top 3 -5 features and benefits they want to see appear in the copy. If you feel this is overkill or you feel it’s not necessary, you can summarise it in a few dot points and send that to them for approval before you start writing.

Download it here.

‘Top 25 Reasons Why People Buy’ checklist

This is a useful summary that helps you identify the over-arching/controlling idea of what the whole piece is about. When in doubt as to what gets included in the piece, ask the question, ‘does it meet this goal’ and if it doesn’t, it doesn’t go in the copy.

Download it here.

‘Kick off script’ for a copywriting meeting

We glossed over this in the session but here is a script you can use in the real world when you want to kick off a meeting, set expectations, get permission to take control and lead the meeting. Whilst it looks informal, it is a very structured document and if you follow it, you will achieve a number of outcomes. Clients really want you to take control of the process and this script enables you to do that.

Download it here.

Facebook Group log in

The Client Experience Facebook group is a private space for you to connect, share ideas and resources, support one another. You might like to post useful articles, ask for help, provide feedback to each other or even collaborate with your fellow copywriters.

Even when you have completed the course, we hope you will continue to engage in this growing community of trained and ambitious copywriters.

Click this link www.facebook.com/groups/theclientexperience/ and hit 'Join Group'. Please introduce yourself by sharing your name and why you chose to become a copywriter or a little nugget about yourself that helps others get to know you.

‘Meditation course’ videos

Here is a link to an 8-session course I delivered recently for Melbourne City Council. I’m sending this to you as I believe that in order to overcome our fears and neutralise our worries about not being good enough (or just ‘enough’), we need to address it at the core. Meditation can possibly assist with that. This is completely optional and is an added bonus if you care to take it up.

You can view the videos here.

Week 2

Part 1: How to work with clients & take a creative brief (part 2)

Part 2: Meet your client and take a creative brief

Week 2 pre-recorded tutorial:

How to write copy quickly and format it for the client

This video contains the 13 steps you need to write copy quickly.

It also shows you how to:

  • Manage the relationship between copy and graphic design
  • Work without a graphic designer and still get your ideas across
  • Format the layout copy on the page
  • Present copy to the client

And a case study showcasing the whole process from start to finish.

Happy viewing!

Mark will be elaborating on how to present work to the client on Wednesday – it will be a fabulous session. Please send your questions in before Monday COB.

Week 3:

Part 1: Guest speaker: 

Note to B - you had Mark and also included his video from the previous round here

Insert Video

Here is your checklist for giving feedback on creative copywriting work 

Part 2: How to come up with great ideas with Ben Keenan

Ben Keenan is one of Australia’s leading brand strategist, creative director’s and Copywriters. He also happens to be one of my early students from my Copywriting course - which just goes to show what can happen if you hang in there and persist!

He is the former head of Award School Melbourne, the former creative director of Clemenger Advertising, and now runs his own private freelance consultancy.

Ben presented at the first client experience program and I am making that video available to you so that you could benefit from that presentation.

I recommend you watch the video as Ben provides you with some insights and tips on how to present to a client, write a creative rationale, deal with client objections, write copy, come up with great ideas and much more.

His presentation techniques and recommendations are quite different to how Mark Farrelly presents his copy but it’s great to watch this to get another perspective.

He works in the big agency, big brands, big TVC space, so he is coming at it from a bigger picture. Most of the work you get in the early days will be small business which is where Mark’s advice is probably more appropriate. But please take from these presentations what you need and adapted to suit yourself.

Week 4:

Part 1: Rehearsal: Presenting your copywriting work to the client 

f you are interested in learning how to present to a client, please take a look at this eBook: ‘How to Present Work to Your Client’. I wrote this a while back but nothing has changed and if anything, it’s more relevant than ever as copywriters have by and large lost the art of presenting to clients in real life (and online).

For an example of a Creative Rationale, look for the ‘Country Road’ example. The Creative Rationale is very similar to the Creative Brief in that it sums up in a concise way what is in the Creative Brief.

If you’d like to see some samples of real Creative Briefs, I’ve included some in this resource – Creative Brief examples. You can see how these pave the way for what the Creative Rationale needs to say.

Here is your checklist for giving feedback on creative copywriting work.

N.B. There was no video or PP from this session. 

Part 2: Editing, crafting copy and pitching with confidence

This week’s session is about mindset, marketing and self-promotion. I know that people really resist the concept of self-promotion so I’ve provided a strategy here that separates you from having to talk about yourself all the time whilst still getting the message out.

I’ve also included here a strategy for how to land big copywriting contracts and to write the copy efficiently so that the client does most of the heavy lifting.

I’ve also talked about the secret of success in copywriting and in any business. It’s represented by just two letters. Intrigued? Find out more by watching the recording. (19 minutes).

Here is the PowerPoint presentation.

Here are some ways you can repurpose your content and build your personal brand.

Week 5:

Part 1: Pitch Night: Presenting your copywriting work to the client

No recorded session due to the presentations.

Part 2: Pricing, packaging and promoting your copywriting business

Pre-recorded tutorial - What do you say when they ask, 'How much do you charge?'.

I had a student in our first group who had the opportunity to quote for a copywriting job (20 articles for a sales training organisation). She asked me for help as she didn’t know where to start, what to say or how to manage the conversation. I recorded a session with her to discuss this and to provide her with some strategies for how to manage it. We covered how to:

  • start the conversation, take control and get permission to steer the message
  • assess the opportunity to see if it was right for her
  • take a mini brief (over the phone) to work out the value of the job
  • negotiate her fee
  • hold her ground if the client wanted to pay less

You are almost certain to get a similar request at some stage in your copywriting career so this may help you create your own script for how to manage these ‘informal’ client conversations and turns queries like ‘how much do you charge?’ into paying clients.

It runs for 30 minutes. 

Week 6:

Part 1: Feedback on presentations, managing client conflict, building your business

Part 2: Wrapping up: How to find (more) clients, introductions to clients

If you have the chance please take a look at this wonderful video – What I learned from 100 days of rejection. It’s a great TEDx talk that shows how powerful we can be when we don’t fear rejection.

Bonus Video 1:

This video runs through how you can find paid copywriting work. It includes email marketing, how to create your pitch, how to build rapport and how to set up joint ventures.

Here is the PowerPoint presentation.

Bonus Video 2:

In this video, I run through the script template, explore the top 10 ways to find copywriting work, and demonstrate how to write a copywriting proposal. You’ll find these resources under the video.

Here is the PowerPoint presentation.

Script template:

We will use the script template in the session and have some fun role playing that so you get comfortable discussing fees.

Quote Proposal:

You are welcome to use this quote template for any proposals you would like to submit. This is quite a formal document but sometimes you may just use a few dot points in an email to summarise the discussion and that will be sufficient.

How to find copywriting work:

Here are my top 10 ways to help you find paid copywriting work.