How to Attract Better Clients: New Interview

Attract Better Clients Podcast

Interview Transcript Draft

Mike Zipursky: Hi, everyone! It’s Michael Zipursky here from Consulting Success.

On today’s show, I’m excited to have Sylvie Fortin with us. Sylvie’s the owner of and is also a partner in Success Doctor – a copywriting and consulting company, as well as Licorice Group which is an online marketing and training company.

Sylvie helps marketers and entrepreneurs manage the backend of their business and also handle customer support at her company, Workaholics4Hire.

So, Sylvie, welcome!

Sylvie Fortin: Thank you so much, Michael. I appreciate you having me on.

Mike Zipursky: Let’s start off by having you tell us where the name Workaholics4Hire came from.

Sylvie Fortin: It’s kind of self-named actually. I’ve realized early on I had a problem. When I was trying to think of a company name, I can’t really nail down what it is we’re going to do so it wasn’t going to be a web design company. We weren’t going to be a writing company. I wanted it generalized, but to really be specific and as punchy as possible. That kind of came about, I think, at 2 o’clock in the morning was when the name popped into my head. I started laughing and I said ‘Yup, that’s the name.’

Mike Zipursky: And now this is 2 o’clock in the morning not when you’re in bed waking up, but while you’re actually still working?

Sylvie Fortin: Exactly

Mike Zipursky: I like to have you tell us a little bit about what your current role at Workaholics4Hire is right now. Continue Reading

Making the Cheese as a Freelance Writer – Lessons to Learn from “Who Moved My Cheese”

In 1989, Spencer Johnson published a motivational book entitled “Who Moved My Cheese.” The New York bestseller explains the different approaches people take in dealing with change in their work and lives.

So why am I telling you all this?

Back in 2007, when I first started as a writer for You The Designer, I had ZERO experience in online writing. Sure, I kept a blog here and there, but the nature of writing on the web is vastly different compared to my poor attempt of channeling the sensibilities of Lester Bangs on my lame blog.

As if high-quality and relatable articles should be enough when writing for the web. I as freelance writer am also required to observe “on-page factors” in the articles I write to increase their “ranking” on the “search result” for the “keyword” I am supposed to be targeting for.

God, kill me now.

With hard work and determination, I was able to overcome the initial challenge of becoming a freelance writer; I managed to change and appropriate my writing according to what is asked from me.

With hard work and determination, I was able to overcome the initial challenge of becoming a freelance writer

It all started with me heeding the advice I read from “Who Moved My Cheese,” which continues to resonate with me even today.

What is it all about?

The story begins when the two rat protagonists of the story, Haw and Hem, found out that the cheese they were enjoying at Cheese Section C has disappeared. In a state of shock and denial, both of them refused to believe that the cheese they had been consuming just “moved” all of a sudden.

Hem was the one most affected by the change because he has been accustomed to having the cheese around with him ever since. As a result, Hem sulked and refused to accept that the cheese is gone.

Haw, on the other hand, set out his way to a new section in hopes of finding new cheese to enjoy. Although Haw started out positive in his quest, his optimism was slowly being chipped away by the disappointment of every empty and barren Cheese Section he stumbled upon.

Despite the difficulties, Haw managed to carry on his quest for the elusive cheese. Eventually, after a long and arduous road, Haw’s perseverance and determination paid off by finding the section with lots of cheese.

Before he found the land of cheese, Haw was able to write the things he learned in his journey on a wall, hoping that his friend Hem would have set foot and will get to read what Haw just wrote. Below is the diagram:

Following the story above, it is impossible not to like Haw simply because it is necessary to be like Haw. Unlike Hem, he adapted to his situation and got the better end of the deal. Continue Reading

How Do I Attract Their Attention?

A really basic introduction to copywriting.

In my previous article, I said that when you identify the problem you solve and who you solve it for, attracting the customer becomes easy.

All you need to do is ask them if they have the problem you solve!

Let’s say you sell denture adhesive. Your target customer is anyone who wears dentures and who has problems keeping them in their mouth. Here’s how your headline might read:

Attention: Denture Wearers!
Do your dentures come loose at the most embarrassing moments?

Your body copy might continue to talk about how eating certain sticky foods can cause dentures to come loose, about the embarrassment that causes and how your adhesive lets them enjoy those foods again.

A painter might use this:
Is your home looking tired? Here’s how to make it look like new again.

A bookkeeper might say:
Are you sick of working all day and doing your books by night?

A sleep clinic might say:
Tired of waking up tired?

These are examples of simple yet effective headlines that anyone can write. The formula is called “Direct appeal to customer”

The formula works because it uses a closed question to draw the reader into the conversation that follows. Sure, not everyone is going to read the advert but who cares? You only want those who say “Yes” to your question.

The rest of the advert has to show them that you understand their problem and have a viable solution. There will be more about that in another article.

My next article explains how to do this by phone; yes, the dreaded cold call and why you need to make a few.

James Yuille is a 35 year plus sales and marketing veteran based in Brisbane Australia. He runs Mediaglue, a marketing services company. His book, “Are You Getting Enough?” is available at

Ed Gandia Freelance Copywriter & Consultant

Ed Gandia is a freelance copywriter and consultant specializing in the technology industry. Prior to hitting the world of copy, Ed was in enterprise software and industrial sales for over a decade. In addition to writing copy and consulting, Ed is also the co-founder of the International Freelancers Academy. For more information on Ed, check out his website at

Ed, what’s the best part of your job?

The fact that I get to pick the people and clients I work with, the projects I work on, and when (and how) I work. You can’t put a price on that level of freedom!

You were in sales for 11 years before going solo and starting your copywriting and consulting business, was that a hard transition to make and why did you make the switch?

Yes, it certainly was difficulty. My last job was for a small software company where the pressure to make and beat sales quotas was high. I did very well there, but I had to put in long hours, which left little time to work my copywriting business on the side. Not only that, but we had just had our first child, and my wife had left her job to stay home with him.

So, basically, I had a high-pressure sales job where I couldn’t afford to slack off. My family was depending on me. I wasn’t willing to sacrifice my six-figure income — and yet  I had very little extra time to do anything on the side. So I had to make the time to launch, grow and work my business.

The reason I wanted to make the switch is that I was sick and tired of the corporate grind. Corporate sales can be fun and very lucrative. But you’re often chasing someone else’s goals. You’re assigned higher quotas every year. The moment you hit them, it starts all over again. And even though the income grows with that increased performance, so do the demands placed on you. If you ever want to change your pace, it’s very difficult. Additionally, I had reached a point in my sales career where weekly travel was almost unavoidable. I didn’t want to be away from my family all the time, even if the money was incredible.

Because of these frustrations, I had set a goal to strike out on my own by 2008 (I beat that by almost two years). I come from a family of entrepreneurs, and I’m wired to make my own decisions, take risks and chart my own course. Initially, my idea was to either buy an existing business or start a new business. What I didn’t realize at the time was that a solo business was actually the best-suited model for me. I’m now glad I went the solo route.

You’ve chosen to specialize in the software and technology sector. Yet, many consultants and solo professionals are worried about going to narrow by specializing in a specific industry or offering a limited number of services, what is your take on this and how has this decision impacted your business?

I’m a huge believer in specializing as a freelancer or solo professional. There’s a misconception that if you specialize your business will suffer should that industry, sector or set of offerings lose favor. That’s simply not true when you’re a solo business — not if you know how to position yourself strategically and market yourself consistently.

I believe that “don’t put all your eggs in one basket” comes from the corporate upbringing many of us have had. The fact is that when you’re a solo professional, your capacity is very limited. It’s just you. You’re not PwC or Booz Allen Hamilton — firms that need to keep bringing a ton of business in the door just to keep the lights on. When you’re on your own, two or three clients can give you more work than you could possibly handle. So you’re not impacted by economic or market conditions to the extent most companies are. Continue Reading