Career PR Course| Launching a Creative Consultancy

elephantears-oakpark Recently a reader asked me how I started my Chicago area marketing and public relations consultancy. I answered background questions on how I transitioned from a corporate career to an independent creative consultant. To extend my answer and benefit others, I’m including the outline for a course I teach called “Write from the Start: How to Launch Your Creative Consulting Career.” Created for writers, a few of my students have gone on to be very successful. I hope this outline helps you. If you’d like to present this program to your group, live or via teleseminar, contact me at 630.942.9542 to arrange a presentation consulting session. Image: Barbara Rozgonyi, copyright 2008 “elephant ear swirl”

Write from the Start: How to Launch Your Creative Consulting Career

Finding your niche in the freelance business

Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it.

Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Making a career change

What do you want to be when you “grow up”?

Books, counseling, research, informational interviews

“The Pathfinder: How to Choose or Change Your Career for a Lifetime of Satisfaction and Success” by Nicholas Lore

Niches and characteristics of each


PR or creative

Business communications

Technical writing

Web writing

Evaluating your potential

Writing aptitude

Business acumen

Project/time management skills

Getting started

Business cards and letterhead

Portfolio – what’s there, what’s missing

Office equipment and phone lines or mobile only

Software, Internet and e-mail

Web site or Blog

Money, time and space

Marketing your service

Product differentiation

Prospecting base

Pricing structure

Getting paid

IWOC Rates and Member Profiles

1994 Average Hourly Rate $58.25 (16.5% increase from 1991)

1997 Prices varied by project, but averaged around $70.00 per hour

1994 Average IWOC member profile: Female, age 45, 7 years of independent experience, 31 hours per week, $37,000 in annual income – $5,000 goes to expenses.

In 1997, 50% of all respondents who worked full-time as freelance writers (35 hours per week or more) earned an income in excess of $65,000; 30% earned $90,000 or more

I’m checking to see about the most recent rate survey; hourly rates range from $75 for editing or beginners up to $500 or more.

Prospecting for and qualifying customers

Current contacts

Collaborative relationships

Online job boards

Networking on and offline

Publishing a blog

Connecting via social media

Google AdWords

Prospect lists

Qualify prospects by need and ability to pay

Write an article for an industry publication

Interviewing and Presenting the Proposal

Ask questions and listen

Don’t give away ideas

Pricing the project

Include the contract with the proposal

Doing the Work

Phone or personal interviews


Keep client updated with weekly progress reports

Schedule enough time to complete the project

Don’t overbook

Accept projects you like and the work will be easier

Your Turn

How did you find your way here? What were you looking for? Did you find it?

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