Do you typically design websites, then try to cram all the “iffy at best” content that the client sends over into your beautiful new design? Making it something completely different?

Additionally, do you get content from clients and try to muddle your way through creating the copywriting on sites as an afterthought which leads to poor conversions and higher bounce rates?

If so, you’re not alone. It’s very common for most web designers to have these challenges. I went through them myself; I think largely because I focused on design design design for so many years and copy was an afterthought.

If I could go back in time and help Josh from 10 years ago make better converting websites (in order to raise rates,) I’d tell him to work on the content and copy FIRST before designing.

But how do you do that?

In this podcast episode, web design agency owner, brand strategist and marketer Damian Vallelonga shares how his agency implements a “content and copywriting first approach” to building websites which has helped them boost their average packages to 10k, 20k and above for standard builds.

Damian is also behind writesite.co which is a course devoted to helping YOU craft your “content first web design approach” and as a listener of this podcast, you can claim a special discount to the course below!

In this episode:

00:00 – Introduction
04:11 – Greeting to Damian
05:09 – Graphic evolution
06:50 – Words are key
11:12 – More value
16:28 – Showcase services
18:27 – Clarify client needs
23:23 – Convincing the pushback
23:57 – Marry design to content
26:11 – Big copy mistake
28:13 – Be a translator
29:54 – Easily understandable
33:44 – Collaborating
36:56 – Strategy that convinces
39:09 – Should change metrics
42:14 – Design in layers
45:29 – Limiting page count
48:37 – Audit frequently
51:09 – Copy network
54:51 – Design excitement
57:18 – Listen over talk for gold
58:51 – The key question
1:01:29 – Design isn’t priority
1:04:12 – Focus on one thing
1:06:32 – Final thoughts
1:10:57 – How to stick out

writesite.co with promo code JOSH for special listener 50% OFF discount on course


Connect with Damian:

Featured links mentioned:

Episode #194 Full Transcription

Josh 0:13
Welcome in my friend in Episode 194 of the podcast, and this one, we’re going to talk about how to take a content and copywriting first approach to web design. Now, I don’t know if you’re anything like me, but if this sounds familiar, I just want to tell you, you’re not alone. And that being that you typically design websites, and they look nice, they look beautiful, but then you get content from clients, or you try to kind of muddle your own way through copywriting. And you end up changing the design completely, usually in a very bad way to cram all this content into your design that was pretty clearly not designed around content.

Josh 0:55
And then oftentimes, a heading that expands or the client will give you a small book that you need to try to cram into a homepage, it just can be detrimental to your website designs. Now, like I said, if you feel that and that’s your current struggle on all of your web design projects, you are not alone. I went through that challenge myself. I think for me personally, I went through that because I started and grew as a web designer and solely focused on design design design design. Copy was kind of an afterthought.

Josh 1:26
So in this episode, I want to help you combat that. And I want to help you with actually going with a copywriting and Content First approach. This is something that I could go back 10 years and tell Josh from a decade ago to do especially in order to raise rates, it would be just this. So in this episode, I’m really excited to bring on somebody who is a web design agency owner who has really crafted and capitalize on this Content First approach.

Josh 1:53
Damian Vallelonga is the brand strategist and owner behind switch stance marketing, who again, pride themselves on doing the Content First approach, which I found fascinating. It’s really the first person I’ve talked to who I feel like has really honed in on this craft, and in this episode, you’re going to hear exactly how they do it. And the really cool thing is everything you learn, you’re gonna be able to apply to your business today. So you can start charging more, because you’re going to create sites that convert, and they’ll just look pretty, and you’re gonna be able to design sites around content, which I’m so excited for you.

Josh 2:26
Now, Damian is you, he’ll tell you, he is a talker, I felt like this episode actually got better and better, better as we went through. So just hang with him. In the beginning. He’s really passionate about this. But I will tell you, I just found this current conversation, fascinating. And it just really picked up steam and got more practical and tactical as we moved along. So definitely keep me posted on how this one helps you out. And then also, I wanted to make sure you knew Damian also has a course on how to build your six figure web design business by using this Content First approach.

Josh 2:57
So if you liked this episode, and you’re like, I want more, I want all of the things in this, you can go to his core site at Wright site.co. And there’s going to be a special offer. For listeners of this podcast. If you go to the show notes of this episode at Josh hall.co/ 194. There’ll be a little promo code there for you to get a discount as a listener of this podcast on his course at right site.co. So make sure to go to Josh hall.co/ 194. And you will get all the details to that. And without further ado, here’s Damian, we’re going to talk about content first.

Josh 3:29
Oh, and the last thing I wanted to mention before we dive in Damien’s also at the time of releasing this just about to do a monthly training in my web design club, about this Content First approach. So if that interests you, if you’re listening before this goes live, go to Josh hall.co/coaching. And you can get an offer a special deal to get into my web design club. And then even if you’re listening to this after the fact you can always watch the replay of that presentation, which will be available for you again, Josh hole.co/coaching For more on that. All right, here’s Damian, let’s get ready to have some fun.

Josh 4:05
Damien, welcome to the podcast, man. Thanks for taking some time and chatting today.

Damian 4:11
Oh, thank you so much, Josh. I’m excited to be here.

Josh 4:13
Yeah, I was really, really excited you send a message originally just kind of sharing your experience going from Divi to agency owner and doing a lot of different things. And more specifically, we started talking about copywriting and the very common issues that all web designers face with copy. And whether we write it, whether we hire it out whether we God forbid, want to try to get it from clients. So I’m super excited to hear from you as somebody who has a lot of experience with this as I do to shed some light on this and to help people out. And I know you’ve got a course that we’ll eventually talk about, but I figure we’ll just dive into some at least the practical things that people can implement. So that sounds good. Yeah, that’s kind of that’s kind of what we figured we dive into.

Damian 4:58
Yep, I’d love to.

Josh 5:00
And then before we start, where, where are you based out of if you’d like to let everyone know where you’re based out of it, and if you can also just share what you do with your agency.

Damian 5:09
Yep. So I’m in Syracuse, New York. And I’ve been a graphic designer for decades, that slowly just, you know, started like in the 90s, print design, branding, and then eventually, more and more web design until what design just became like the majority of my work as a designer and, and that, that has evolved as I’ve taken on different roles, I started to uncover the different types of demands that websites have on a designer. And one of those things that I just like, kept running into both in a I was I was a partner in a startup, where I was really just like the design director, but that also was partially a marketing director as well, because we are a small team scrappy startup.

Damian 6:04
And I that like sort of just forced me into evaluating what I do as a designer. And it also translated into my, into my freelance work. As like a, like a, I had, like a freelance agency isn’t that is basically how I’ve run things for a long time. And, and so, you know, the more that I was building websites for clients, and also for this startup, the more I was realizing that, even though I can do the design work well, and I have my head, well wrapped around, you know, type styles and graphic treatments, and layouts and all this stuff.

Damian 6:50
I had no clue what the words should be what we should be saying on these websites. And I can think back probably a decade ago, when someone first like sort of challenged me on this. And I’ll try not to curse very much in this podcast. But I was just like, oh, hell, no, I don’t care at all about the words like I’m a designer. I’m right now I’m going to take on the role as a purist designer, and I’m going to say, Screw anything having to do with words that’s on you, the client or the other partner in the project, I couldn’t even wrap my head around the value of getting the words, right.

Damian 7:39
And so it took me a long time to evolve from a point of like, actively wanting to, to push off anything having to do with content, strategy, and copywriting, to a point where I just had to be accepting more and more that this was my responsibility in a variety of roles. And one of the roles was in this startup where I didn’t have anyone else to do it for me. And so I had out and then inclined in the role of, of facilitating a project with a client, what I just started to see more and more. And what I understand as a very common experience with web designers is that a client just says, in their mind, like they have a business and they’re responsible for promoting their work promoting their products or services. And they have a website to help do this.

Damian 8:33
And that’s all they see. They see the website, right. They don’t compartmentalize design and development and copywriting. They just see it as their website. And they’re like, I need somebody to help me build a new site. And so they go out and they look for a web designer. And this is, you know, I work primarily with smaller businesses. So usually like, Max 50 to 100 employees, and I don’t work with big corporations. And these, well, yes. And there’s challenges that come along with that. And obviously, budgets get bigger, but, but these these types of clients are, you know, small, small to medium size budgets. And they don’t go necessarily to like big agencies, they look for a local design shop or design studio.

Damian 9:21
And all they come with is the request of, I need a new site. My Site sucks, it’s old, it’s outdated. It’s not helping me grow my business. Can you help me redesign my site? That’s how they think about their site. And from a designer’s perspective, we say, of course, like, that’s what I do, and I’m good at it. And I can help you put a really good face forward, professional look out to the world on your website. And the client says, awesome, I’m so excited to have a stronger web presence. And then The project starts to unfold. And the design comes along. And there’s a point where I would always get stuck. And I know a lot of designers get stuck, where it’s okay, well, I’m actually, you know, laying out these pages, hey client, can you please supply me with some content?

Damian 10:20
And and then what I gotta believe on the other end between the emails where you don’t hear what’s the client is thinking is what the hell I’m paying this, this shop to build the site, why are they asking me to write the copy? Like, either just copy it from my old site? Or Can’t you help guide this process at all, like, I’m not a, I’m not a writer, I’m not a content strategist. That’s why I’m paying you to build a new site. But the designer still is in this limited view of but I do design. And so personally, I had to struggle with that with that challenge, and and sort of like misalignment and expectations, and and eventually come around to the, to the place of, oh, maybe I should be helping more.

Damian 11:12
And then as I started to accept that more, I realized, well, wait a minute, if I’m helping them do this, and it’s resulting in a better performing website for them. I’m suddenly now more valuable, and my services are more complete. And what does that equal? At the end of the day, what are we all trying to do as freelance or small studio web designers? We’re trying to grow a business. And I kept thinking, How the hell can I become a six figure web designer. And it wasn’t, unfortunately, just by being a good, good designer, designer.

Josh 11:48
Yeah,

Damian 11:49
I realized, oh, wait a minute, the key to becoming more valuable is to provide a much more complete service to my clients. And so it relieves them of any stress, you know that that friction that happens around content, the content phase, totally gone. But But ultimately, the whole reason why I do this is because I want the end product, the final launched website, to be done quicker to the process to be done more smoothly for the client to be more excited. And for the website to be doing more for that client. Like for the years that it’s live, I want that website to be helping the client.

Josh 12:34
Yeah.

Damian 12:35
And so because it’s doing that more so in a better way, than just having a good professional looking site. It’s now professional looking and professional sounding. And it’s good. I like that it’s grabbing the audience, it’s grabbing the user, I now can charge way more. And I think a lot of designers don’t believe me when I say this, but my partner and I’m like, let’s just keep notes to say like having a $5,000 figure out there. Like, there are designers, depending on geography and everything, we charge wildly different rates for sites, but but I was like there was like this, this mark of 5k, that I wasn’t able to push past per site. And nowadays, we charge for the complete website it’s between 10 and 20k. Because of this better, round, more well rounded,

Josh 13:40
Complete, complete service, like how you put that, yeah.

Damian 13:43
That is going to do so much more for the client. So I’m not a businessman, I don’t think of myself as a business guy. I mean, I’m wearing like a nice shirt today. But like, I, I am a designer. And I really like helping small businesses to get ahead and to advance themselves. And so I’m not just here to to make tons of cash and to fleece people, like I want to be compensated for the value that I’m bringing. And I want to know, I want to feel really confident that my clients are going to have a great ROI. Yeah, and to have too few designers, in my experience, just ignore that the business side of things. And not only in their own business, but what that means for their clients business. And so it’s amazing, the just what this shift in, like, what the service that we’re providing, how that has how that has changed our perception of value, and okay, so we are worth and what they what we can do for them.

Josh 14:49
Yes, yes. So I want to break down. So you covered a lot there. Damian. I’m trying to break everything down, which was good. So you actually answered a ton of questions that I had that I was I figured we’d drill well into each video each part but you. So you laid out some interesting stuff there. First off, I feel a kinship with you as far as going as from a graphic designer to a web designer. And then like you said, you realize later on that, oh, I should probably be doing content and the responsibility is on me either way.

Josh 15:16
And you also articulated the client side of things, because they don’t understand this. And I used to resent clients, and I think it sounded like you did as well, like, you were kind of like what you worry about that I’m doing the design, but then you realize, like, they don’t know, they don’t understand that it’s really our job as web designers to explain that and explain the value. So I definitely want to get into how you’re packaging copywriting in with this. But those were a couple of really interesting points that I think are really common. Most web designers don’t realize, first of all, how important copy is and then you realize, oh, I should be doing this. And then like, I realized, I’m doing this, I’m just not charging for it.

Josh 15:57
So it sounds like all of those things kind of you know, came into play for you. And it’s your right, you get to a point as a designer, where like $5,000, for a nice design is just about the limit and less, you have strong copy and strategy that, you know, provide the results. So I mean, you you kind of already answered that question. But I guess a more a more tactile question would be in order to get to the 10k plus projects, you really have to have a results oriented approach and copy is a big part of that, right?

Damian 16:28
Absolutely. And it really comes down to the way that you even the way that you approach sales, and I and I’m like, I’m not a great salesman, sometimes I’m almost too too open and honest. But like the whole point of, of this service is to, is to is to help the client, right? So. So we want to be able to really clarify that this isn’t just a business card, right? A lot of people think about what websites as business business cards online. Like it’s, it’s so sad, and tragic that that’s that’s some company that some businesses think about that, because they are just missing tons of opportunities.

Damian 17:14
And so if we can convey that, A, that a website, not only can showcase your services, but can actually like relate to your audience and compel them to want to learn more about your company and dig deeper with you. Like there’s so much more of an experience than a positive experience and a productive experience that can be had on the user side, when you take a more strategic approach to the, to the layout to the build of a website. And and a lot of a lot of clients need to be as you’re saying they we need to really clarify what that looks like. Because we forget about this is like a, a central sort of a core principle of our approach is, is making sure that we understand the audience. And that’s just one of the things that I never really sort of delve into much when I was just a designer.

Josh 18:21
And do you mean understand the audience of your clients? When you’re like understanding their…Yeah.

Damian 18:27
Well, that’s a funny, great question. Because yes, not only do we need to understand our audience, which are our clients, and all of the it’s the same thing, though, what are what are they going through? What is the issue that they’re dealing with? And how can our services resolve the problems that they’re facing, and help them reach the goals that they’re looking for?

Damian 18:47
So when we when we come with that perspective, to every project, and we say, okay, you know, dentist, you know, John Q dentists like, what are the needs of your customers, we like, once we, when we when we clarify to them, that we are going to be a strategic thinker, about the content that goes on the website, and also how it’s going to be laid out and designed. There’s so much more value in there, because we are, we’re telling the clients that we’re seeing their website as a it’s it nests, it’s necessary to represent both their services or products and their customers together in the website. And when you do that, you because we’re basically just creating a sales pitch for our clients. We’re helping them create a sense of

Josh 19:44
That’s an interesting way. Yeah, that’s an interesting way to phrase it. Yeah.

Damian 19:48
In the form of a website, or in the, you know, in the form of a slide deck. I mean, people hire designers for a variety of things, but a lot of designers don’t think of themselves as marketers or advertisers, but we’re really assisting our clients in selling something and promoting something. And so when we, when we say, Listen, we understand that your website, ideally needs to be a really strong sales pitch for your company for your services and your products. And we understand the formula to be able to make this thing work. It’s going to compel your customers to take action.

Damian 20:25
Like that’s a really core requirement of a website, can it compel the people who are on this website to do something to make this click or buy this product or sign up for this newsletter or purchase this download whatever it is, we need to know what the goals of the website are, and I never cared and I never saw the value in that. And that’s where we can start to say, okay, because we’re we are taking the strategic approach to your website, we’re charging more for

Josh 20:59
It really do so much more. And it really all goes down to content doesn’t I mean, that’s, that’s what I realized, because I was similar, I focused on just design I never liked content was the last thing I looked at on a design. Typically, I would, you know, I mean, I would have like placeholder text sometimes or take other texts. But I never cared about a like an engaging headline, or subtitle text or the right type of messaging, that that kind of stuff wasn’t even in the conversation with clients until later on in my journey, like, one regret I have is not taking copywriting more seriously.

Josh 21:31
Which I think is what you’re getting at because, like the goal for your clients is to convert somebody and I you kind of laid out I think a genius copywriting tagline, if anyone wants to steal it, which is to just say, don’t have a business card as a brochure or don’t have a website, that’s a business card. Like let’s take it from business card, a brochure to sales tool. I love that. I think that was like the worst way to clarify that message. But you know, come up with your own version, less business card, more sales, like whatever you want to say it really is a great I think it’s a really important approach for websites in general. And even a lot of clients will say like, well, I don’t, you know, I don’t get much traffic. We don’t need anything fancy or just We just want our information up there. But would you back me up and say like, it’s our job to explain why every buddy, every business owner needs a website with strong copy that converts.

Damian 22:26
Oh, 100% and I get that pushback regularly. Oh, this is we just use our site to like, you know, it’s like validating tool, where, you know, we’ve already done a lot of work, and people just come to like, make sure we’re legit or whatever. And I’m just like, Are you are you just try trying to cheap out and like, just pay $500 and get that Business Card website. Like because if you are like, that’s fine, we’re not not a good fit, we’re not going to be a good fit. But anyone who visits your website, to legitimize or to to make sure that you have the creds that they want you to in order to do business with you.

Damian 23:06
You’ve got to be able to show that and it’s not just a visual thing. People are not reading visuals, they’re reading words. And the words are the thing that’s going to make that convinced them something. Right, it’s like we can only do so much as designers to be a convincing factor. In this process. It’s the words that people are actually consistently employed. Look, get into the brain.

Josh 23:35
And I’m sure you struggle with this, just like I did. This was really hard for me, because I always felt like design was the most important thing. And it is super important. I know that probably neither one of us want to disparage the importance of good design, it adds credibility adds trust, it adds engagement. But at the end of the day, words sell is that kind of what you’ve experienced.

Damian 23:57
Correct. I always say because I’m a designer, I always say we always the goal is always to marry great design with great content great and copy great words. Because if you cheap out on either one, it’s just a it’s not going to be you’re not going to stack up to your competitors most likely. And you’re just going to you’re not going to be you’re going to be embarrassed by your site. Like as people start to react to it over time, you’re going to like maybe that wasn’t the right choice.

Josh 24:29
So I I want to dive into specifically copywriting and so we’ve laid out a lot of the benefits towards good copy a lot of the challenges that and mindset, I think that most designers go through but also on the client side of things. We’ve talked about their mindset and the fact that we need to empower them and show them how important this is talked already about results based strategy and copy but I want to mention something that one of the members I have a web design club, a coaching community and so timely.

Josh 25:01
Six hours ago, from the time of recording this with you Damien, my member Katie shout out to Katie is, is asking about copywriting because she is curious about how much copywriting she should do versus like whether she should hire it out, or whether she should empower the clients to provide copy. And I’m sure we’ll talk about potentially clients adding their copy when it’s an industry we don’t know about, like, if I worked with a plumber, I have no idea I don’t want to research about plumbing stuff I want to, you know, probably take what they they give me and make it better.

Josh 25:32
But she laid out this copywriting, like she said, the way I see it is that copywriting can work as clients can do it themselves. Or they can get it done by a copywriter. Or it can be written by a client, and then edited by a copywriter. Or it can be written by me and I could do all the copy. Does that like, you know, lay out? Like all the options, does that sound about right to you? Is there are there more options? Or, you know, basically its client does it all? Client copyright like a professional copywriter? Does it client? Does it copyright or edits it? Or you do it? Is that kind of the main options that you’ve seen?

Damian 26:11
Yeah, and I honestly, I think three of those four are okay, do not let the client provide all the copy.

Josh 26:21
Figure that’s where you’re going to love it.

Damian 26:23
It’s it’s not this is not an absolute statement. Because some people are multi talented. And as a business owner, or executive or something in their company, maybe they do have that skill. But being able to write well doesn’t always translate to web copy. Yeah, so it’s generally good writer, it’s not…

Josh 26:23
And the curse of knowledge is really common with most business owners, because they’re gonna give you like, everything that they know. And it might be really good for somebody who knows that industry and wants to read a manual. But for for a website, we skim don’t wait like we scan we skim. So it’s so important to be brief and thrift and intentional, whereas clients are just gonna, they’re gonna give you the whole farm when it comes to copy.

Damian 27:10
Well, and that’s, that’s, that’s what I’ve come to understand my job to be, I’m a translator, something I’ve never really considered in the past. But recently, I’m just like, You know what, it’s my job because of the curse of knowledge. If your listeners do understand it, you know that everyone in their own company has a 10 out of 10 knowledge level. And for a lot of different industries, the audience is down at like a two, and you got to you got to find a way to meet them in the middle, or just get all the way down to where they are. And slowly over time, you can maybe work, but all the clients that you’re going to work with, if they lead or own a company they know the most about that company possible. It’s theirs. Josh, you know the most about yours possible. I know the most about mine, everyone knows them. But the audience doesn’t need to know, hardly any of it. They only need to know the essential soundbites.

Josh 28:10
And I want to dive Oh, sorry. Good, good.

Damian 28:13
I just want to say that, that the translating, it’s like, I see myself as the as the middle person between my client and their customers. And it’s my job to take all of the nonsense and garbage that’s in my clients head and translate it into these really simple and compelling talking points that the audience understands. And then they say, oh, cool, you just made that so clear, and easy to grasp. I’m gonna pick you as the company I hire,

Josh 28:43
I love that you’re kind of a filter. Yeah, you filter it out, you translate it into lingo that actual real humans can understand who don’t know the industry, which is really hard, like, and even, you know, for somebody like myself, I am learning and implementing this on a daily practice for my business, because a lot of people I realize are brand new to web design, or they’re new in their business, I have to be careful about like how much I give them or how I speak about certain things and make it really clear. So yeah, I totally agree.

Josh 29:14
Now one thing I want to say real quick, before we dive in these different options, is one thing that I learned is that if a client knows a lot about a bunch of different subjects, that can work great as blog posts in that but like homepage, main services pages, that’s where it’s like, you know, you know, a six year old can read it and figure it out. But actually, somebody I think a lot of my colleagues West McDowell had back on the podcast awhile ago, he said, His goal is to make all homepage copy so that a 10 year old could go on the website and figure it out. And as long as a 10 year old could figure it out, you should be good. But would you agree in saying that, like for the in depth copy, that’s where a blog post goes, and then you can SEO it and do all the things?

Damian 29:54
But that’s exactly the case. We don’t want I mean, the digestibility can combined with, like succinct, and and like value packed statements. So like the 10 year old idea is perfect. Like, we there’s no reason to present because it’s like an introduction, I that’s how I think the sales pages on a website homepage services pages, even careers pages about, like those kinds of things those are selling the business, the blog is where you can just go as deep as your heart desires, and really get into hopefully with a strategy, you know, understanding what, what SEO needs are, are there but you definitely want like homepage copy to be easily understandable by a 10 year old. Because that if you can do that, then it’s going to be easy, easily understood by everyone. And you just risk the more complicated you make it and the more dense you make it you just raise that risk level of not connecting with the reader, the user.

Josh 31:04
That’s a great point. And it really speaks to the difference of like how people are viewing pages. And when they’re viewing pages, like somebody goes to your homepage, they’re not going to be there to like read an article for 20 minutes and implement, they’re there to get quick info they’re going to scan same thing with landing pages most of the time. So I love this approach. I think it’s really worthwhile highlighting this, that homepage is most like main menu item pages, landing pages, sales pages, those are going to be more thrift concise. The only the most important things that are most engaging, and then the in depth stuff. That’s why you have a blog.

Josh 31:38
I do want to answer this question real quick. I’d love to get your thoughts on this as far as so we’re not going to let clients write the copy for us. That’s that’s number one. And I’m sure we’ll talk a little bit about how to like practically put this in a you know, a service type package. But from these I guess main three options done by a copywriter copywriter helps or done by you? Do you feel like all three will work depending on where somebody is? Like what like early in my journey? I just did not have an interest in this. So I even now I don’t know I do all my copy now. But I’m considering getting help with a copywriter eventually, like, what are your thoughts on how my listeners as web designers were entrepreneurs? Which one should they go in? Does it just depend on their their skill level with copy where they are on the journey? What are your thoughts on that?

Damian 32:25
Well, so hiring a copywriter is always a great idea as long but you have to be able to sell that service. So that’s just a skill that we need to work on over time. Because whether or not you’re doing it yourself, self or you’re you’re bringing another white label whoever partner in, that needs to be an additional cost that the client pays for. But having a dedicated copywriter and content strategist can can help you can help you as a designer learn a lot about how that’s done.

Damian 33:01
So I love for people who have no experience with it, using a copywriter that they can work on behind this work with behind the scenes is a great way to just sort of dip your toe into that into that world. I mean, we all you know, because we all build websites. It’s it’s not, it’s not so far fetched. Like it makes sense to most people. Because it’s just a component that we’ve always worked with, it’s just that we haven’t really thought about the strategy behind it. And some of the details. So hiring copywriter, is great. I also love the idea of with the right client, taking content from them and editing it.

Josh 33:41
That’s what I gravitated towards,

Damian 33:44
Especially early on, because you some so we hear we hear from a lot of designers that, you know, maybe they’re just not confident enough, they haven’t done this practice enough to feel like they can sell it outright as their own service. And so it’s sort of a way to get more comfortable with that process. They do rely and say, okay, you know, I would love for you to, to work with me, we can collaborate together, set, send me some, you know, existing content or some new ideas, and let me help you massage it and try and make it into stronger copy.

Damian 34:21
So that tends to like for people who aren’t super confident that tends to that is a good way of easing into that process. And because you may not feel super confident, it’s like, okay, well at least I can maybe charge, you know, 500 bucks more. And we’ll just do a little bit of that together. And then like the next client, maybe charge 750 And maybe I’ll try and do a little bit more and you just sort of work yourself up to the point where you’re feeling much more confident that you can actually sell this as your own service, but I think there’s a value in all of those options, honestly.

Josh 34:56
Yeah, I agree. I think it would be I definitely think it’s when you’re when You’re beginning out, or when you’re beginning to either hire a little bit out or partner with a web design copywriter or somebody who Yeah, can help with that. And obviously, it does depend on the client. Like there are some clients who are like, I don’t have anything, just do your thing, which that’s almost a best case scenario, because you can make it awesome as long as you get the right info. But then, yeah, most cases, I have found clients are going to have a previous website, or they’re going to have brochures and lingo and their company stuff. And they’re going to give you a small book. And then yeah, like you said, you got to filter it out, translate it to what actual, you know, people who don’t know the industry or just want to know what the heck’s going on to move forward. That’s the that’s the key there.

Josh 35:37
I do feel like, in most cases, okay, well, okay, so this leads me to your question, it might be kind of a tough question. But what would you say is the percentage of a project as far as like what copywriting is, do you think it’s like about a fourth of the average website? You do? Like, it’s as far as the amount of work that you do? Would you say it’s like 25% 30%, like, how much work on every project that you do, on average is going into copywriting?

Damian 36:05
Well, you know, there’s, because of, because of the technical nature of design and development, it can feel like there’s more labor, more hours being spent on the design and Dev side. But I, I have come to a point where I really see it as equal, and I don’t, and we almost, and we value it as equal. Sometimes we, sometimes we’re actually pricing, this is just coming down to our own practices. But sometimes we’re even pricing the strategy and the and the copywriting higher than the design development, I get it, I understand, especially if, you know, sometimes we have a white label partner to do design and Dev work. And just for the it’s just like, depending on the client and what we’re charging,

Damian 36:56
But it’s the the value, we’ve gotten to a place where we say like, the, the strategy and the copy is as valuable as the design. We pitched that just as a simple statement for for designers, and also for our clients just so we can try and get through to people to to appreciate, hopefully, quicker than, than not appreciate the value that the strategy and the copy is going to play. Because without it, we know that the professional looking site is only going to get the clients business so far. But if you take a strategic approach to the content, it’s going to bring it way farther. And so it’s just more about it’s, it’s just have a ton of value to it. And so we price it inherently. I love

Josh 37:48
that. Now, I’d love to dive into how you sell this. I imagine being that you are an established, you know, freelancer, business owner agency, now you’ve probably got a lot of results, are you able and do you showcase results based off of like before and afters with, you know, the new websites you create copy to show like, once we tweak this heading, you know, here’s the result, we got this for this client, because for example, my site, I tweaked my heading on my main on my homepage, to say I’m Josh, here’s what I do, here’s who I help, which was okay to learn how to create a web design business that gives you freedom and the lifestyle you live, I changed it to that. And I saw a big increase in the amount of people that have come to my courses and my bounce rate went down on my website. So are you able to measure stuff like that with some of your clients? And does that help in the sales process?

Damian 38:38
It to some extent, yes. But we all know, it’s like, there’s so many variables included that. And because we don’t often the just the process that we go through with our clients, we’re not making minor tweaks. But that’s a great example. And I’m glad that you that you said the words out loud what you went from, and then what you went to because that’s a that’s an exact, that’s a precise illustration of what you shouldn’t do versus what you should do. And because of that you saw the results.

Damian 39:09
So yes, so some of our clients, or most of our clients, we’re just doing these large wholesale, wholesale updates. And so it is like it’s it’s almost just a no brainer, it’s it’s obvious, we do get very positive. You know, sometimes sometimes very specific metrics that have changed things for their business. And, honestly, one of the things that we get the most is, and this this speaks to us, it speaks to a longer term success for our clients than just okay, like, well, month over month, what, what do these updates do for the company? It’s the business owner themself. And this is just like a perk that seems to come along with the work we do. Is that we have helped them and and their team typically get a better grasp for how to communicate their products and services.

Damian 40:10
And what that does is that is that generates way more confidence for them. And so when they are in sales mode, if it’s a small company, and they’re all sort of, they’re all doing sales, they are feel so much more confident, because they know that we have gone through the exercise of understanding what to say to people to understand what they’re going to care about in the context of, they have a problem, our company has a solution. Let’s talk about it in a way that’s going to get them excited and want to do business with us.

Josh 40:45
That makes a ton of sense. Yeah, for the customer. Obviously, there’s so much value in that because it can help clarify their message. Like you’re you’re essentially you said earlier, you’re like a marketing though you’re like you’re like, you’re, you’re you’re creating their sales page in their sales stuff. So they can take what you do on their website, and then they can put it out to any other channels they want, which that’s a great way to sell it. That’s like a little line item that you could say like, Listen, what we do on your website, you can translate to your social media, to your mailing list, whatever, you could be making a poster if you want or make it a billboard if it’s that’s the case. I love that approach.

Josh 41:19
Now, I’m curious, how do you feel about web designers doing this in phases or doing like, certain pages initially versus doing like an like, for example, if I redesign a site that’s like 35 pages, it’s got homepage, you know, five or seven landing pages for sales pages, About Us contacts and a bunch of blog posts. If I personally oversee the copywriting on 35 pages, that’s a big project. I know how much work that would be. What are your thoughts on like, web designers doing Phase One main page landing pages, then phase two, the more intricate pages have you guys taken that type of approach? Or? Because that’s the way I first see this. And the way I did a little bit of like, copywriting and SEO was like, Let’s optimize like, you know, the most important pages and then we’ll do others later on. If you’re on a budget. What are your thoughts about that type of approach as far as actually like selling this?

Damian 42:13
Well, yes, I mean, first off, I, I, we separate blog, from website. Okay, time, Oh, that’s good. And blah, blah, blog is just like a different beast. Because there’s just different. There’s, you know, we want to have, we obviously want to have an understanding for search terms, no matter what, but the blog is there to do a very specific job, it’s long form, it’s got, it’s just a whole wide variety of topics. And we we don’t ever lump those kinds of projects into a website redesign.

Damian 42:50
We just want to, and a lot of times our clients are able to, to take what the work that we’ve done on the website. And, and often if they have a marketing director or coordinator, something like that, those people with the work that we do together on the site, are able to then start to, to refine the posts in their blog on their own. And sometimes we’ll do a monthly retainer to like continue that work ourselves or in collaboration. But we we know that the main website, and especially the homepage is where our focus has to be directed. Most of our focus has to be directed.

Damian 43:40
Because if we can’t boil things down to to some clear and compelling statements, then forget the rest, like we’re not going to have any luck with the rest, we’ve got to start with the introduction like a website’s homepage, and landing pages as well. But a website’s homepage is meant to be an introduction to the company, for this audience, for the user. And so we think if you screw up the introduction, just like if I was to meet you, Josh, you’d be like, Hey, I hate your hair, but let’s talk and we can maybe go out and get a get a bite, a bite to eat, and you can pay for it. Like, that’s a terrible introduction. If when you’re meeting somebody.

Damian 44:23
So we want to make this introduction just seamless. And, and, and ver as powerful as possible in like these small sound bytes of information. So we just tend we put a ton of our value, a ton of value into the strategy, understanding the audience understanding how to simplify services down to a point where it’s going to make sense to them, and then and then we just roll that up through the rest of the site. So we don’t really fate we don’t usually phase things out based on budgets. It’s except the blog divided From the main website, that’s really.

Josh 45:02
Great points, great points. And yeah, if anyone wants to get on my bad side, just, you know, dog on my hair, and that that’ll do it. But do you do things by like, like certain pages? In that case? Do you have like a, you know, a 10 page type package versus, you know, 30 page type package does that I’m just trying to get a feel for how you would practically, like, propose this and have packages that are, you know, tiers for copywriting for websites?

Damian 45:29
Yep, we, we traditionally will present options that are just homepage. And then we don’t, this is just the niche that we’ve fallen into, but we don’t do sites that have more than 10 pages. Okay. And, and what’s interesting, is, one of the reasons why that has come to be is because we are like a ruthless streamliners. Meaning, we always are able to find ways to cut the fat. So we just don’t ever propose sites that have typically more than 10 pages. Because there’s there are plenty of companies that, you know, I mean, I’m I’m working on projects where they have 100,000 URLs, I mean, it’s just like, bonkers. But that’s a very atypical project. It’s not even the same kind of sales.

Damian 46:25
So so most of our projects are small businesses who just need to get across this similar set of information from my past client. And it always, always comes between one intent. And if somebody comes to us with a 25 page website, the first thing out of my mouth is, let’s figure out a way to simplify this. Because most of the time, and I’m not going to say all the time, but most of the time, the users should not be forced to spend, click after click after click looking for what they need. So I just, I just believe that there are ways to streamline so you so you’re able to keep the overall number of pages, you know, within a reasonable limit. Again, that depends on depends on the client. But

Josh 47:13
That’s where it makes a lot of sense. I mean, that’s how Yeah, I would say most commonly, of all the websites I’ve done in different industries, 10 was about average, that really was a fair average. If good clients had like 20 or 30 pages, it was more like in depth services, they were borderline blog posts, if they were a service, or if it was just something about certain programs they had, or a certain like category based, like they might have a service that’s in different categories. And then suddenly, they’ve made like, you know, five or seven different category style industry pages that are more like niche pages. So yeah, that makes a ton of sense.

Josh 47:50
But on that note, one thing that’s really cool is if you do the copywriting for one page, it’s kind of a starting template for other services, boom, there you go, you can swap out content and, and do a lot of things like that as far as if you’re gonna scale pages. So yeah, I love that approach. Though. Simplifying, it’s actually kind of a challenge that I’m going to have. I’ve got, I’ve built my site up to where I’ve really, I’ve got kind of, you know, it’s, it’s a bit of a beast right now on my next phase of the evolution of my site will be like, condense and consolidate and streamline all the things that you’re talking about and kind of filter my own stuff, because I’ve been creating content for four years straight. So it’s just like, there’s a lot of stuff out now. Now, let’s say, isn’t that a challenge with businesses that are more established is like, you got so much content, you got to just make this simple and just figure out some sort of funnel or some sort of path? Right?

Damian 48:37
Yeah, auditing is, is a critical component for those established businesses that, that, you know, you just, you see, you see projects, you see a client come in and say, they say, Oh, we haven’t done a, you know, redesign in like, five or seven years. And we’ve just been sort of like piecemealing updates. And what that actually looks like is just a bloated site, where there hasn’t been a concerted effort to, like, make this one experience. It’s like, they just start tacking on crap here and left and right. And you’re like, you didn’t like step back and think about this from the big picture perspective. You just started throwing things in random dropdowns and blah, blah, blah.

Damian 49:22
And so you’re like, oh, so let’s go through the process of like, auditing these pages, figure out like what’s old, what’s just bad, what’s no longer needed? What’s can what can be consolidated, what has to become new so so it’s it’s a fun process to be able to, to say to someone, listen, you don’t have to feel like your site is like dragging things down. Like instead, we can do this information architecture slash content, strategy work, that like refines the whole thing and just makes it so much easier to fit the people that wrap their heads around.

Josh 50:01
Yeah, I love that it’s so important for clients to to be able to do that. And here we are, we’re getting into, you know, messaging and just yeah, like really summing up what we’ve talked about to this point, you got to take all the knowledge and just make a stripped down scannable version of it that’s going to be compelling and convert people that is really what copywriting is all about, at least from from my perspective.

Josh 50:23
Now I want to get to because you guys so you have a course you’ve created a course called right site, it’s a whole separate branding of the right site Dotco I want to talk about that and talk about if people are ready to like, you know, get more into the copywriting world themselves and learn how to do this. But for the people who are just like I’m not ready to do the copywriting myself, I don’t have an interest in messaging or anything. Where have you seen people have success with like finding copywriters? This is a question I get all the time for web design students. And I don’t know many and a lot of copywriters I know are like they really are. They’re either kind of like graphic designers. Sometimes they’ve been unreliable or they’re just not in the business anymore. Do you have any networks or sites or anywhere where you would recommend trusted copywriters for this?

Damian 51:09
Well, that’s an interesting question. I don’t have an extensive because this has been work that I’ve been working on for for quite a long time now. I never relied on outside copywriters. I took the path of learning it myself. You know, Copy Hackers is a great resource. I learned a lot from story brand. If you’ve heard of that.

Josh 51:36
Yes, yes. Feel free to jot some of these down, by the way. So we’ll link these. So you have I actually haven’t checked out Copy Hackers, but I heard good things. Yeah, story brand, I highly recommend. Yeah, we talked about that on the podcast in the past quite a bit. Actually. I haven’t talked about it recently, BS story brand, I think is like a 101. Get your website messaging through some sort of story brand framework that so you’re the guide, your users are the hero, you need to make them the hero and show them how to do a or do B. Yeah, so that’s great.

Damian 52:10
Yep, that’s a that’s a critical strategic approach is understanding the audience. So I talk a lot about a lot about that. In all, with my clients, making sure that they understand like, we cannot forget that there is someone on the other end of this screen. And they’re the ones who we need to understand even sometimes more than you.

Josh 52:37
And I’m, I’m sure you cover this in the right site course, as I look at the layout, but I’m curious, when you talk to clients about this, do you have a specific Slyke a questionnaire like a strategy questionnaire that they go through? Do you do it on a call, because I know sometimes I found with clients, they would go through a questionnaire and it was terrible. And I would just ask them and have a call about their business. And then I learned to just start recording those calls. Because they would give me like the best answers summed up often on a call, whereas on the on the questionnaire is either like half of a sentence or a small book. And I’m like, oh, gosh, so Yeah. How’s that worked for you guys? What have you seen work best?

Damian 53:13
No, you nailed it. So So yes, we so in in right sight, we have an essential questions. It’s called the essential questions every website needs to answer. Right? So we need to make sure that we’re we’re getting, we’re asking these questions of our client. And we have this, this document that you get in the course, and the and the call, so yes, handing them, handing them a questionnaire doesn’t always yield the best responses. And so I love that you said you end up having a call, you record the call. That’s the that’s where a lot of the gold lies. And it’s doing two things. You’re not only you haven’t gotten we have this guide that we ask questions and, and allows us to really dig in and better understand that their services and their audience, their customers, but what it’s also doing is you likely had to already convey this to sell the website, but it’s giving your client a ton of confidence in the process. Because they’re there they’re realizing like oh, man, this designer is asking some really Yes, questions that okay.

Josh 54:26
Yes, this is such an important point. So, heads up, especially for new designers. If you come across like I just want to make you a sweet, awesome looking website. Here’s all the tools I use. Here’s what I do. Clients don’t care about that. If you ask them about their business and ask them about their clients and ask them about what results they want to get. That is how you sell 10,000 20,000 websites, right?

Damian 54:51
It just completely changes the conversation. It just does. It’s there they all during the sales process. They’re like, oh, this person more interested in what I’m trying to do with my company. And in the context of my website, then the other web designers that I talked to. And so this, this, this strategy call and the strategy process early on before you actually are turning it into web copy, the strategy session or sessions gives the client a ton of insight into your process and, and understands and appreciates, and starts to get really excited. I mean, we’ve come out of strategy calls, with people saying like, like, you know, I wasn’t expecting, you know, any of this stuff that you asked. And you’ve just brought up so many interesting ideas and points that I’ve kind of always thought about, or just like, danced around, but never really been able to like pinpoint, and like document well.

Damian 55:52
And so it’s almost like they, they have gotten a sense of relief, that we have taken this off of their shoulders. And done and we’re doing it in a really like tight and streamlined process, that it’s so they’re super excited for the rest of the project. And that’s a great way to start to kick off a project is by giving them a ton of confidence, and a ton of relief and a ton of excitement.

Josh 56:15
I love that. Yeah, we’re very well said it, it makes sense. Most business owners don’t talk about their business that much like they’re just busy running their business day to day, they’re in the weeds. It is relieving. Sometimes when somebody just talks like that’s one reason I love having my web design club, because we talk about our businesses. It’s one reason I’m in a mastermind with a few other folks where every month we get together and we just share what’s going on. And I always get clarity every month on those calls, just because it’s just nice to get out of your head stuff is jumbled in your head until you get it out, get it out on paper or talk it over with somebody gets some other insight on things. And it’s like, Oh, why am I doing that? Or like, yeah, I didn’t even like I’m saying this. But that’s not even who I should be talking to. So there’s so much value in those strategy sessions. And I probably assume that you come from a very serve over sell mentality. And would you say that you listen and ask questions more than you talk in those? Is that the key? I guess the question is, what’s the key to a good strategy session to get the right copy from clients?

Damian 57:18
Yeah, you said it. It’s taken me some, some work because I like talking. But yeah, we really have to, we really have to understand what the most important like we want to respect our clients time. So we don’t want to be asking them unnecessary questions, we got to understand what the right questions are. And then just listen and take good notes or record the call and put it through otter.ai or something and get a transcript and start pulling out those key points and putting them in a doc. It really does come down to just finding the right questions to ask, and then just let them spill because most clients will. And within what they’ve said, you’ll be able to pick out these nuggets of gold, we’re like, okay, so you can’t repeat that, you know, 32nd blurb on our website, what the client just said, but you were able to pull out these eight words, put them together into a headline. And wow, that just became really powerful.

Josh 58:19
What’s the question? If you wouldn’t mind sharing? It could be on that sheet. Or it could just be something that you found that has worked well with clients with a getting good content out of them? What’s a question that you’ve seen work? Well, for example, I used to always ask questions, what’s your biggest challenge? Or always ask clients? What’s your biggest challenge, but that would often not lead to the best results? Sometimes, something we talked about my web design cloud recently was to ask clients, just tell me about your business, because they’re gonna get to the real challenges pretty quick. Have you seen a similar question? Or like, what have you what’s like one question that works? Well?

Damian 58:51
Well, you know, we focus a lot of our questions on their customers. So these things, is one of the biggest areas that we need to really understand because it’s sort of the linchpin for everything else, is, let’s make sure we are covering and understanding any and all of the problems that your customers are dealing with that causes them to reach out or look for you as a solution to that problem in the first place. So companies exists, services exist to solve problems. Even just the supermarket, the supermarket is there to solve a problem for people who are hungry.

Damian 59:31
But like there are very specific, you know, a financial analyst has a very specific audience that has a very specific need. And that need is only a need, because there’s a problem that they aren’t able to solve themselves. So the better that we can ask about their customers problems, the better we’re able to frame their services as a response to those problems. So we spend a lot of time asking about what’s going on in a day in the life of your customer, where they probably have hit this like trigger moment, where they’re like, oh my god, I can’t deal with this anymore. I can’t, I can’t get on the scale and see a weight that I’m unhappy with anymore. Either, you know, I can’t live with this leaky faucet, it’s driving me crazy. It’s just like, there’s, there are a million different problems that we let we face in our lives, and we’re looking for someone else to help. And so we have to understand what that experience is with their customers to then position their products and services as the solution. And so that’s that’s a huge part of our working process.

Josh 1:00:46
I love that that’s probably my biggest takeaway. Damian from this, this conversation is, you’re not talking about yourself, your website’s not your brochure, you’re not even necessarily talking about your client, you’re talking about their customer, your clients customer. So that’s the challenge for everybody. The next time you’re on a discovery call or a sales call or meeting, try shifting your focus to your clients customer. I definitely wish I would I would have gone back and done that, because it would have made my life a lot easier. What because design can fall in and around the right copy. And all that I don’t know if you design first and then do copy second, or if that works together. But copy first design.

Damian 1:01:29
Yes. So that’s a great point that you brought up there. We, we are a content for content first designers. So we build wireframes as our primary deliverable now. So a lot of times we get hired only to do with with deliverable only being wireframes. And then like a client could have an in house designer or whatever. And they take the wireframes and they did the design. We sometimes we don’t even do the design. We’re hired because we’re content specialists and content strategists. And copywriters, and they want someone to just focus on that. So we never ever ever touched design without an approved wireframe set of wire gods. Yeah.

Josh 1:02:16
I love that.

Damian 1:02:17
Well, even and that, yeah, go ahead.

Josh 1:02:20
Oh, I was just gonna say even your website at switch stance, the or switch your stance.com. It even says like messaging and websites to spark growth in business very clear. And then you hit the pain point right under that where it’s like, Let me guess, can’t find the words to put on your website and marketing. That’s like that really is a prime example of who exactly you help, like, I’m having trouble figuring out what the heck to say, boom, there it is. So I love that it’s great.

Damian 1:02:46
And for, you know, for most, so one of the things that speaking about wireframes. One of the things that, you know, like I always tell clients, like we’re not going to, we’re not going to think about design for a while, we’re just going to figure out what the words are on the site. And by presenting wireframes that are super low fi, okay, I’m talking not a single design element at all people have varying. I’ve over the years, I’ve seen people develop wireframes and different levels of fidelity. I like the dumber, the better. gray boxes, text, and buttons like that’s it. Because for clients, especially small business clients who don’t maybe haven’t gone through numerous web projects over their lifetime, and don’t have tons of experience with this process, it just gives them the simplest thing to comprehend. And what I found is when you try and mash content and design together into one presentation, you get a mess of responses. And it’s not focused.

Damian 1:03:51
And so by developing wireframes, ahead of time and doing the content strategy, and laying out an entire page from top to bottom, in gray boxes and black text, the client is forced to only focus on the words and the hierarchy of information. And then you you know, you’d go back and forth, you refine their set of wireframes. And then you say, 04Okay, now we’re going to layer design on top of this. It’s not like it can really evolve the wireframes your we don’t we don’t like you know, sections to get shifted, because the hierarchy is intentional, but you can really bring it to life with colors and patterns and interactions and all this stuff. And that’s when the client gets to talk about, oh, I don’t love that shade of red. It’s maybe a little bit different for my brand new coworker, he makes sure Xcode is correctly. So but that’s just a completely different conversation and when they’re allowed to only focus on the words and then allow to only focus on the design, you get such clear feedback and it speeds up the whole process.

Josh 1:04:52
I love that that is a great way to sum up that approach content first, then does I like how you said layer that design on top then, because of the design can elevate the words, the grout, you know, those are the graphics, the colors, the elements, the color, all that stuff elevates the content and can make it look pretty. I mean, text itself can look really nice. I’ve recently talked with one of my colleagues who Oliver, who just does typography, and we looked at how literally just words can make design. So yeah, fascinating. I love that I think that approach is a great way to go.

Josh 1:05:25
Let’s, let’s try to think of a good analogy. Kind of coming up short, but I was thinking it’s kind of like a car or something like your content is the is, you know, the the frame it is the everything that’s involved, but then you could change the colors, you could change the styling and all that kind of stuff. It really I think for clients, this is probably the biggest challenge, because most clients probably think we’re going to design site first, right? But I would imagine it’s a mental shift and saying, we need to start with the messaging, start with the copy, start with the strategy, then we do the design. So I love that. Is that a fair way to sum that up?

Damian 1:05:58
That it’s a fair way to sum it up?

Josh 1:06:00
I love that. Well, I got one final question for you, David, this has been great man, we’ve really covered some awesome stuff as far as copywriting content messaging, the approach, what the approach that you guys have taken, I mean, you hit early on the fact that you went from, you know, selling sites under 5000, on average, to now 1020 Plus, because content results based copywriting and stuff. So you boiled a lot of this down into your course you want to just tell us about your course. And then, as you know, let us know where to go to check that out if people are interested in doing more copywriting themselves.

Damian 1:06:32
Right, so so this is scary. This was scary to me, as I said before, the idea of trying to get into content and strategy and copywriting. And so knowing that a lot of designers are nervous about this. And I mean, some are just playing, like I said, I was just like no screw that stuff. I don’t care at all. But a lot of a lot of designers are curious, but they may feel like it’s a little bit overwhelming. So in right sight, what we wanted to do was first be able to convey the appreciation and the value of this service.

Damian 1:07:08
So it really helps designers understand that this complete service is something that makes a ton of sense for them and for their clients. And, and but it’s also not just something you can’t just snap your fingers and have great content. There’s there’s an understanding for the strategy. And there’s an understanding for copywriting that follows the strategy. And one of the things that we thought could be super helpful to speed this process up is not only do we have this Essential Questions document that really guides the strategy portion. But then we translate all of those answers into a number of examples. And in throughout the course, we just we have included wireframe templates.

Damian 1:07:56
So you know, and I work in Adobe XD. And so they’re generated in there. But they’re their home pages and sites and services, and products and careers and about pages, and a number of them under each under each type. Giving designers like a really great place to start showing because we make the connection like based on these questions that we had answered. Here’s how we got to a little headline, here’s how we got to a blurb. Here’s how we got to a CTA. And so by providing a ton of templates, we feel like okay, people can really hit the ground running and start to be filling in their own copy based on the strategic approach that we took to building those things out.

Damian 1:08:42
So you know, we have formulas for headlines. You know, we have a customer interview worksheet, which is awesome for a lot of clients, we different from the essential questions that we ask our clients, we often interview our clients customers, because they’re the ones with the actual information, the actual knowledge, our clients, we know plenty about their audience, their customers, but their customers themselves are the source of the ultimate truth. And so if we can say, hey, client, we know that we can get great information from you. But we also know we can get perfect, super valuable information from your customers, let us interview them. And that costs more. But you get really great insight.

Damian 1:09:32
And so we have a worksheet where over time you get more and more comfortable in this process. You can start saying okay client next next client, we’re going to start this process by interviewing your customers, asking them a series of questions and really understanding their situation. Then you can help us frame it within the context of your services, and you get even better content. So we give you we give our students a worksheet to help with those interviews. You And then we also help people understand how to sell this service to their clients, we have a whole a whole set of modules about selling content strategy and web copywriting into your services.

Damian 1:10:14
So we try to make it a real complete course, that gives people the appreciation for for this strategy and for copywriting gives them some really easy tools to implement. And then also gives them a way to sell it into their services and make more money, right? The goal of this is to evolve into high value web professionals, and to be looked at as indispensable in the eyes of our clients. That’s where I always want to live.

Josh 1:10:45
I was almost I meant to say this earlier, but I feel like content is one of the main things that will take people away from being a commodity to being a truly valuable web designer, it really it’s all about,

Damian 1:10:57
We say that in some of our promotional material is, you know, low, low budget clients, low budget designers are our commodities. And you can really just go anywhere and get me you go on Fiverr you go on any site, people from all around the world will build you a website for $150. And it’s it may actually look decent. But at the end of the day, we know that everyone can do that. But not everyone, not. And so even in your city, if you know that you have competition within your town, your city, the way to differentiate yourself is not only through being good at design, but it’s been a complete service, because most web designers just poopoo content and say, That’s all my client. And then you come in and you say, I’m actually here to take a strategic approach to advance your business with the use of a website, we’re going to understand your customers, we’re going to understand how your services better their lives. And we’re going to wrap it in the in the finest design you’ve ever seen. You just blew away your competitors, because your client thinks, Oh, damn, they know exactly what I need. And it’s not just a professional look.

Josh 1:12:12
Yeah, yeah, that’s well said. There’s there it is everybody, Damian, that was awesome. That was my last question was gonna be like, how do you not become a commodity? And with content? I think you just answered it. That is awesome. So everyone will have this linked in the in the show notes. But everyone can go to write sight.co. And I think you have a promo for everyone listening, right? If they’re attending the course.

Damian 1:12:33
Yep. So in honor of our host, Josh is the is the code. The site is 695. And, and with the code Josh, you get 50% off. Its lifetime access. It’s structured and seven days, you spent a couple a couple hours over seven days, and you’ve digested the whole course. And then we have a private Facebook community where people send us questions we get, we do regular trainings, lots of great conversations around this experience of evolving from purely a designer to a strategic designer. And it’s a really fun community. So that’s a

Josh 1:13:13
How exciting man, that’s awesome. Yeah, I love it, you guys are up to I really don’t know of another great resource for copywriting aside from just some books and Copy Hackers and some other stuff. So this is definitely something I’m going to recommend for folks. And I feel like this conversation really, you know, kind of I mean, I’m looking at the course curriculum, and I feel like our conversation today really kind of like glanced over the main aspects of it. So yeah, hopefully, you know, I know we’ve covered a lot of tactile things that hopefully help people. Again, I think my biggest takeaway from this is, don’t just talk about your clients. Well, first of all, don’t talk about yourself. Don’t have a brochure website. Don’t just talk about your clients talk about their customers. Bam. That is awesome. Damian. Thanks for your time. Dude, this was super fun. I really learned a lot because this isn’t an area of my expertise. So yeah, thanks for your time, and thanks for sharing, man.

Damian 1:14:02
Thank you, Josh.

 

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