Professional Writers vs. Everyone Else

Rewriting on Steroids

Rewriting on Steroids

A friend recently told me that they hired a marketing copywriter from one of those online sweatshops where “writers” will work for $5 an hour, and in some cases, less. 

While it’s true that you can knock out a letter, or email, to home on the first try, professional writers are worth the fee they charge.  After all, the art of writing is rewriting.  Anyone working for $5 an hour either isn’t a pro, isn’t very talented, or isn’t working very hard for you.

Think of it this way… a cheap writer is like a cheap “date.”  You get exactly what you pay for – and all the bad stuff too.

The content I saw from the online sweatshop was at best amateur.  No focus, not helpful, nothing that would motivate anyone to do anything, full of cliches that would make a reader or buyer gag, etc.  It came complete with poor grammar and misspellings.

It was clear no research was done, no creative thought was attempted, and no real quotes from real customers.  Just words. Lots and lots of them.  Abraham Lincoln said, “I’m sorry I wrote such a long letter. I didn’t have time for a short one.”  Tight copy takes time and a focus on the objective.

It’s true. Great copy is shorter, has a purpose, is well researched, creative to meet the objective, is a story told well, and works to achieve exactly what the client wants – sales, more web traffic, more foot traffic, signups for information, or whatever the client needs.

The real problem with hiring a sweatshop writer isn’t the cost.  “Hey, so what if I lose $5 an hour,” said my friend. 

I asked him after the failed attempt was over, could you afford the waste of time?  You can’t get that back.


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