It’s a fact of life for copywriters: Many clients talk big, but few back it up.
What do I mean? When we kick off a project, clients often say they’re ready to do something different. They want copy that’s fun, bold, non-corporate. Copy that will make them stand out from the competition.
Then I start presenting them with copy that meets those goals. And nine times out of 10, the client wimps out. They start stripping out the humor or softening the language or adding in traditional corporate speak. Before you know it, you’re left with copy that’s mind-numbingly conventional.
Anna and I are used to this scenario. Sometimes, we’re able to convince clients to be more adventurous. Other times, we have to shift to “the client is always right” mode and grit our teeth while a little piece of us dies inside. (Okay, I’m being overly dramatic. But copywriters do have a reputation for being divas, after all.)
Recently, though, I had the pleasure of working with a client that really was ready for something different.
Buildium makes software that helps property managers, landlords and condo associations manage their properties more efficiently. We first met last fall to discuss writing copy for their soon-to-be-redesigned website.
One of their big goals was to explain more clearly what their software is all about. But they also wanted copy that would sound human, be friendly and even have a little humor.
Of course, I was a little suspicious at first. But as time went on, I could tell they actually meant it. One time, marketing manager Geoff even prodded me to make the copy “more zany.” I don’t expect to get that request from another client anytime soon.
The new Buildium site went live this month, and it looks great (kudos to the folks at Schwadesign!). Thanks to Geoff and the rest of the Buildium team for having the confidence and smarts to let loose with the copy.