Meet Alicia Kacar from Type A Copywriting
Tell us about your business
I’m a copywriter and communications queen, and my business is Type A Copywriting. I specialise in SEO copywriting, conversion copywriting and storytelling for small business. I mostly write digital content, like websites, blogs and sales pages, but I also do brochures, feature articles and press releases. I love working with small businesses and entrepreneurs, but I’ve also worked for big brands and organisations, including Australian Government, Burbank Homes and Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.
When and why did you start your own business?
I started my business as a side hustle in 2016, while working full-time as a PR and Communications Manager. After 15 years in the corporate world, I was desperate to do my own thing – but the idea of giving up a great salary and job stability was so scary. I resisted taking the plunge for months, then I got made redundant (so much for ‘job stability’!) I took the redundancy as one of many signs from the universe and went full-time with my biz in early 2017. Since then, I haven’t looked back.
What does being a business owner mean to you?
Being a business owner means total freedom. I decide how hard I want to work, who I want to work with, and the type of work I want to do. Ironically, I’ve never worked harder – but I’ve also never been happier. The lines between work and fun are seriously blurred for me, but I think that’s a good thing. That’s when you know you’re in the right field.
What or who has been your greatest influence in business?
At the risk of sounding like a hopeless romantic, I’d have to say my husband. He’s the one who really encouraged me to start Type A Copywriting and helped me let go of my old corporate life. He works full-time as a manager for transport company, but he even offered to drive an Uber part-time if the copywriting gig didn’t work out. Thankfully it hasn’t come to that!
What’s the best advice you’ve received in business?
Get your processes in place. I have processes for everything from how I deal with late payments to how I handle revisions. When you first start out in business, it’s tempting to fly by the seat of your pants, but taking the time to set up your processes saves time and stress in the long term. It also shows clients you’re professional, and ensures you’re both on the same page when you start working together.
What has been the most effective marketing method you’ve used to promote your business?
Most of my work comes from referrals, which is an ideal scenario as a copywriter. When people love what I do, they pass it on – and I’ve been lucky to connect with some wonderful clients that refer me to others.
Other than that, I’d say SEO and blogging. SEO is one of my speciality areas, so my website is optimised to attract quality leads. Blogging is part of my SEO strategy, and is a great way for me to share great content with my audience. It’s also a fun way to show off my writing skills, and give potential clients an insight into my personality (wacky, Type A weirdo!).
What is one thing you’ve learnt as a small business owner that has served you well?
I’m discovering new things every day, but one thing I’ve really learnt is to trust my gut. If something doesn’t feel right, it’s probably wrong – no matter how good it looks on paper.
Are there any resources you’d like to share with other business owners?
Your Web Toolkit is a free resource that helped me build my WordPress website. It’s seriously awesome and so user friendly. I highly recommend it for anyone wanting to DIY their website. In terms of tools, some of my favourites include Canva for easy design, Xero for accounting and Toggl for tracking time.
What do you do for fun and relaxation?
In my former corporate life, it used to be shopping – but I’ve saved a fortune on shoes since I started working from home. These days, I like to keep things simple. I enjoy hitting the gym, cooking, reading and hanging with my hubby and my two cats, Solo and Scribe. I’ve recently started yoga too, and I absolutely love it. I used to hate yoga with a passion, but something’s shifted in the past few years. I’ve learnt to like relaxing!
What are 3 top skills needed to be a successful woman in business?
Drive, resilience, and a willingness to step outside your comfort zone. Plus, you need to really love what you do. Running your own business can be life consuming, so make sure your life is consumed by something that makes you happy.
What fears have you faced in business and how have you overcome them?
Public speaking and networking is probably the biggest one for me. Like most writers, I’m a bit of an introvert. I feel much more confident on the page than I do in person, but I also understand the importance of ‘putting myself out there’ – and it’s something I’m doing more of. I spoke at an event in October last year, and I’ll be speaking at the WBS event in February. Like anything, the more you do it, the easier it gets.
What are your top 5 goals you want to achieve by the end of 2018?
- Start using video as a marketing tool (I‘m camera shy, but I’m getting over it!)
- Create a high-value opt-in for my website
- Launch copywriting group workshops for small biz owners
- Attend at least one networking event per month
- Achieve the illusive work-life balance
What makes you happy?
A killer outfit, my husband and cats, and Harvey Spectre from Suits.
How do you measure your success in business?
With copywriting, ROI isn’t always easy to measure. I look at things like leads and conversions from website copy, or the number of times a blog post has been viewed or shared. However, the real benefit of great writing comes from making a connection with the reader – building trust and rapport – and those results may come days, weeks or even months down the track. A good measure of success for me is client satisfaction. If my clients are happy, I’m happy.
What are your top 5 business tips?
- Always write for your audience first. It’s about them, not you.
- Ask yourself: ‘What am I really selling?’ Hint: it’s not your actual goods or service.
- Be consistent. This applies to everything from your branding to your tone-of-voice – and, of course, the quality of your work.
- You can do anything, but not everything. Outsource the non-essential elements of your business, and find experts to help with tech, bookkeeping and other scary tasks.
- Be yourself, even if you’re an absolute weirdo. ESPECIALLY if you’re an absolute weirdo. That’s what will set you apart from competitors.
Have you had to make any sacrifices while running your business?
Absolutely! Every day is full of sacrifices, but they’ve all been worth it. The most obvious sacrifice is the security of full-time job and those ‘Friday feels’. When you work for yourself – especially when you work from home – you tend to work around the clock. Friday 5pm doesn’t have quite the same vibe these days… but neither does 9am Monday. It all balances out.
Where do you see yourself and your business in 2-5 years?
I’ll still be a copywriter, but I plan to diversify to include writing courses, workshops, templates, and books. There’s only one of me – and I never plan to subcontract – so there’s only so much copy I can write! By offering writing workshops and courses, I’ll be able to help more small businesses connect with their customers through words. I’d also like to help other aspiring copywriters and pass on some of the lessons I’ve learnt through running my own business.
What is your favourite book?
I love ALL the books. I actually set myself a challenge to read 52 books last year, and I hit that target. Business-wise, my favourite book is Confessions of a Misfit Entrepreneur by Kate Toon. It’s a refreshing take on what entrepreneurship really looks like – and it’s not all impossibly white teeth and four-hour work weeks! I also recommend The Copywriter’s Handbook by Robert Bly if you want to learn the art of copywriting. For fun, I love biographies and fiction. My faves this year would be Hunger by Roxane Gay, and The Girls by Emma Kline.
What is your dream holiday destination?
Japan was my dream destination and I ticked that off the bucket list in 2015. I’m heading to Nepal in October this year, which I’m really excited about. I also love Vietnam and Cambodia. I’m obsessed with Asian food and culture.
Why did you become a WBS member?
I’d been looking for a local networking group for some time, and WBS seemed like a good fit. When I heard Cazz say in one of the podcast’s episodes, ‘Don’t bother joining WBS unless you’re a bit crazy’, I knew I’d found my people.
Connect with Alicia
The next WBS event in Point Cook will be on the 15th February 2018 at The Phoenix Hotel Point Cook. Alicia Kacar from Type A Copywriting will be a guest speaker discussing – SEO Secrets: How to get more traffic, more leads and more love from your website.
Book your tickets here: https://goo.gl/C7gvpu
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