What's In The Toolbox?

By 2020, it's a firm belief that 40% of Americans will be self-employed. With the exponential growth of the World Wide Web, it's a safe bet that many of those solopreneurs will be ensconced in digital.

For every new website, there's the need for new content. Regurgitating the same old text but in a slightly different format no longer cuts it if you want high search engine rankings. Every website has to add value over its competition. More and more, 'social proof' is seen as a signal to Google and others that a website has content worth seeing.

The problem is, many small business owners are great at what they do, but struggle to transpose their methods and achievements into written English.

True, video is becoming a bigger player and easier to access; however:

  1. video still needs a well-crafted script for it to be discovered on YouTube;
  2. a recent marketing study covered by Buffer revealed that:
    "[58 percent] of marketers claim written content is their most important form of social content."

The need for quality content (and its successful transmission) is a growth market; that's beyond refute. But what does it take to create that content?

I'm not talking natural ability alone. I'm talking about:

  • building a skillset for which the market is desirous;
  • positioning yourself so that the market knows you possess that skillset - in spades;
  • proving your niche authority to a network of trust that will vouch for your acumen;
  • running a business that allows you to provide your service and supports your lifestyle.

What a copywriter needs in their toolbox

Natural ability is the champagne-against-the-hull of a good copywriter. Much can be learned or nurtured, but without that spark of creativity it's difficult to stand out from the crowd.

By bringing all of the components together, I hope to give you the best chance of igniting that spark. So here's a list of what, to me, are toolbox essentials:

  • Fast PC and broadband goes without saying;
  • Writing software;
  • Editorial Calendar;
  • Image creating and editing software;
  • CRM system;
  • Instant Messengering;
  • Invoice creation and monitoring software;
  • Dreamcatcher - digital notebook;
  • Productivity software;
  • Freelance agency membership/profile;
  • Responsive e-mail.

And for your online presence:

  • Authoritative blog - practise what you preach;
  • Website designer;
  • Web host;
  • e-mail subscriber list & press release/newsletter outlet;
  • Social profiles - active ones!
  • Social listening/monitoring software;
  • Automated distribution to social;
  • Community where you can engage peers and influencers;
  • Stand-alone platform where clients can engage you direct;
  • Places to go to and people from whom you can learn more about your craft.

These are just a few that spring to mind. As I start reviewing each brand associated with one type of tool or another, I'll add any I've not covered to this list. If you can think of any, please drop a comment below.

If you'd like to feature as a source for any of those tools, drop me a line. A template for an 'About You' will follow, with the opportunity to join me in a Hangout to talk a little more about what you're offering.