7 Ways Copywriting Is Crucial To Your Fitness Business – Sales Pages

October 28, 2017

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Number seven in this mini series is the big Daddy…

Sales letters

Got something to sell? Then you’re going to need a sales letter (sales page).

But before I get into the elements of what makes a great sales letter (and the things you MUST include), I want to make sure your head is straight.

So put your pen down. Focus.

You Need The Right Attitude To Write A Sales Letter

Writing a great sales letter starts with YOU. Your self confidence, your beliefs about selling, and your pride in what you do.

Selling is NOT pushy or unethical.

At least it shouldn’t be. Think about it like this. You’re in the fitness industry, right? You are in the business of getting people healthier, stronger, happier.

If your product or service makes a real positive difference to people’s lives, solves a problem, and is something they’re already looking for…where’s the problem?

You Owe It To Them!

You’re in business, nobody is arguing with that. And if you believe in yourself, your product, and your service, and if you correctly identify and target people who NEED you, then it’s actually important that you DO sell to those people.

You have a duty to let them know about you, and give them the opportunity to make a decision!

OK. So How Do I Write This Damn Sales Letter?
There’s an art to sales letters, but here are some elements you need to focus on…

  • an *amazing* headline
  • a succinct, descriptive, attention grabbing intro
  • who it’s for…and who it is not for
  • proof that you really get them and their problems, and you’re the right person to help
  • benefits and value
  • the problems you can solve
  • exactly how your solution will help them
  • what they can expect – what will they receive, how will they use it
  • how life will feel/look after they’ve used your solution
  • precisely what action you want them to take next
  • Q&A or another form of objection handling
  • strong call to action/s
  • social proof
  • your story or the story of the product

Sales pages can be daunting but I promise they don’t need to be.

Start with complete confidence and pride in your product and take it from there.

P.S all 7 of these mini guides are together on this page.

For more fitness industry copywriting chat, join me on Facebook.

Nicola Joyce – the Fit Writer – is a freelance copywriter and journalist who has been writing content and direct response copy for the fitness industry since 2004. Get in touch via Facebook, or by sending a message here.


#6 – 7 Ways Copywriting Is Crucial For Your Fitness Business (About Me profiles)

October 26, 2017
Today: writing your About Me page (or any kind of profile/bio).
(Check out the posts about videos and video scripts, emails and email marketing, blog posts, website copy and ebooks.

Isn’t Writing “About Me” Easy? I Just Talk About…. Me…. No?

Do you want to bore your readers straight off the page and leave them with absolutely no idea of what life would be like working with you?

Then no, ideally not.

Yes, if you run a business, you do need to tell people about yourself (especially if you are the face of the brand). You might do this on your website, in your social media bios, within sales pages, and as an author bio when you write guest blog posts.

But how much thought do you put into those little “about me” profiles?

“About Me” Is A Marketing Tool Too

Stop thinking of about me/profiles as a footnote and start thinking of them as a key part of your marketing and brand awareness.

It can be challenging to get all the key points into an “about me” section, especially on social media, but that’s good practice. Make your bio sharp and succinct, interesting, and on brand.

9 Things To Remember

If you’re struggling to write an engaging profile/bio/about me section that doesn’t bore people to death, bear these points in mind:

  1. know who you’re talking to. The messaging, tone, and language of your bio should change according to your audience, just like any other bit of copy should.
  2. don’t just include facts and boring info (tip: nobody cares about you, they care about what you can do for them)
  3. make your about me/profile be about the reader. I know, sounds weird. But it needs to be about you in the context of what you do for other people.
  4. share your values, character, and what makes you different. Why should the reader work with you?
  5. tell the story of your professional journey. People love stories, and this is the best way to get all that boring info in without just listing a load of facts.
  6. show how you’ve provided solutions in the past, and how you can help the reader now. This is another creative way of getting those boring facts in, but in story form.
  7. give a sense of what it’s like to work with you. Do this through stories, language, and tone.
  8. build a sense of connection, familiarity, and trust
  9. add a call to action or at the very least a way to contact you

Here are a few examples of About Me/profiles I’ve written

Kirk Miller About Me page

Boldanic (supplements) About Us/company story page

Tony Cottenden Top Condition PT About Me page

Adam Cam About Me page

For more fitness industry copywriting chat, join me on Facebook– and stay tuned here for the final post in the series.

Nicola Joyce – the Fit Writer – is a freelance copywriter and journalist who has been writing content and direct response copy for the fitness industry since 2004. Get in touch via Facebook, or by sending a message here.

 


#5 – 7 Ways Copywriting Is Crucial For Your Fitness Business (Video Scripts)

October 23, 2017

Number 5 in this blog series about ways you should be using copywriting in your fitness business is videos (well, video scripts).

(Check out the posts about emails and email marketing, blog posts, website copy and ebooks).

Video Scripts? Why Would I Use Them?

You’ve probably heard marketing type people say things like “Google loves video content”,  and “people prefer watching video to reading copy”.

Video content is a really important part of your marketing strategy. You need video on your website, and you might need to use it as part of your sales funnel.

But it’s not all about off-the-cuff Insta lives and Snapchat stories. That kind of spontaneous, selfie-style video content definitely has its place. But we’re talking about video as a marketing tool here, rather than video as consistent content.

You can (and should) use video for

  • your website home page
  • as a sales tool
  • to welcome clients to a member site
  • to summarise who you are
  • to showcase your products
  • …in fact anything that you’d also do in writing.

But just because it’s video, don’t think you shouldn’t write it first.

Videos are valuable. People won’t hang around to watch them if they are boring, clumsy, or take ages to get to the point. Your videos need to be clear, concise, engaging, AND make people take some sort of action. That’s a lot to leave to chance.

So script it.

You can rewrite your video script as many times as you need. There’s no pressure. Take time to get it right.

  • video sales letters
  • home page videos
  • video bios
  • product videos
  • Q&A/objection handling videos

Have you got video on your website, members’ area site, or in your product bundles? If not – why not?

For more fitness industry copywriting chat, join me on Facebook – and stay tuned here for the next five posts in this series.

Nicola Joyce – the Fit Writer – is a freelance copywriter and journalist who has been writing content and direct response copy for the fitness industry since 2004. Get in touch via Facebook, by sending a message here.


#1 – 7 Ways Copywriting Is Crucial For Your Fitness Business (Website Copy)

October 16, 2017

Over the next seven days, I’ll talk about seven ways that copywriting is crucial for your fitness business.

Today: website copy.

What is website copy?

It simply means the words on your website. Whether it’s the home page, product/services page, contact us, your bio, the “our story” or “about us” bit, or a more salesy page like a squeeze page, landing page, or long form sales page. Any words on your website is “copy”.

Why does your website need copy?

Well, it would look pretty bare with just images and graphics. Even a headline or a call to action box is “copy”.

The words on your website need to persuade the reader to do something. Sign up, join up, get in touch, engage, order, buy!

Of course a website will also have information on it (who you are, what you offer).

But it shouldn’t really be about you. It should mostly be about THEM. Why are you the right person to help them, and why now? How well do you understand them, and how will you solve their problems?

Whether it’s just a simple landing page, or a full website with products and services, stories and social proof, blogs and a members’ area…your website needs copywriting.

Here are a few examples of web copy I’ve written:

Web copy for a Personal Trainer Tony Cottenden at Top Condition PT
Web copy for online Fitness Coach Kirk Miller
And online Coach Adam Cam
Web copy for sports nutrition Bulk Powders
Web copy for a sports NGB Swim Wales

For more fitness industry copywriting chat, join me on Facebook – and stay tuned here for the other six posts in this series.

Nicola Joyce – the Fit Writer – is a freelance copywriter and journalist with 13 years experience in writing content and direct response copy for the fitness industry. Get in touch via Facebook, by sending a message here.


Industry secrets – how fitpros should connect with industry media contacts

February 25, 2014

Ever wondered how people get their names, products and services in front of industry journalists and magazine editors?

How fitpros can get in there with editors, journalists and bloggers

First of all, understand how the chain of command in the media industry works.

There are in-house journalists (staff on magazines or newspapers). Their bosses are editors, commissioning editors and sub-editors. Then you have freelance journalists (like me), who usually specialise in a sector. Freelance journalists will be commissioned by inhouse staff to write features, interviews, kit tests and other bits of content for the publication. Then there are PR (public relations) people. They work on behalf of brands, and part of what they do will be managing relationships with journalists and editorial staff.

What’s the process behind a magazine commission?

There are two ways in which a magazine article can come about: from a pitch (from the journalist to the editor(, or from a commission (from the editor to the journalist). The latter usually – but not always – happens when the editor already knows the journalist by reputation, or if the journalist has previously written for the publication.

For pitches, journalists need to come up with strong, timely ideas. When we get commissioned by an editor, we will usually need to find case studies, expert comment and/or products to fit the brief. We may have to do this extremely quickly and we’ll therefore be looking for fitpros who can help us by getting spot-on product information, fantastic expert comment or strong case studies.

On the topic of kit tests – these are always commissioned. We will never be able to pitch an editor the idea of testing a single product. So, if you want to get your product in front of an editor, you need to send it to them first and then they will send it to one of their freelancers to test. (I can write a blog about press releases if this will help?)

What about fitness blogs?

If publicity via a fitness blog is on something you’re interested in, you need to get in touch with bloggers. Bloggers are our own “editors” and those of us who do product tests can be contacted directly to see if a review of your product would make good content for our readers. Are blogs are a suitable outlet for your product and a worthwhile part of your marketing strategy? That’s your call. But it’s worth bearing in mind that customers are increasingly reading blogs for online reviews and feedback.

You can also try contacting fitness bloggers to see if they need guest bloggers. Personally, I find “cold call” emails offering guest blog posts irritating at best, but that’s usually because they’re very sales-y and not offering anything useful or readable. So, by all means give this strategy a try (but not with me… 😉 )

How can you make the most of freelance fitness journalists?

We want to work with you and hear from you, but you need to know what we need – and what we don’t need – when a deadline is looming. Here are a few tips.

Do contact us, but only with information we have previously stated we’ll find useful or which will fit the commission we’re working on
Don’t send information which doesn’t fit the bill, no matter how strongly you feel the magazine should feature it
Do note our deadline and tell us honestly if you can help us meet it
Don’t promise anything you can’t deliver
Do send complete information, images, case studies, contact details
Don’t send information and then disappear off the face of the earth (at least let us know who else in your team we should speak to)

How do magazine editors want to hear from you?

I asked one of the deputy editors I write – Laura Jones at Body Fit magazine – to give you some advice. Here’s what she had to say:

“Remember that editorial staff at consumer magazines like Body Fit get hundreds of press releases a day. To give yours a chance of being read, make sure it has an eye-catching headline, relevant content and all the contact details we might need. Make sure you read the magazine first so you know what kind of content we do – and don’t cover – and ensure you know who our target readership is.”


How to find a freelance journalist with a relevant commission

“This is all great”, you say, “but how do I begin to find freelance fitness journalists? And how can I know which articles they’re working on?” OK, I’m about to let you into some real industry secrets here… make sure you use these!

Twitter – search the hashtag #journorequest – journalists use this when they need a quote, comment, product for an article they’re writing. Save the search as a stream so you can see it every day.
Responsesource – use the website Responsesource – journalists and editors upload specific requests here
Networking – online and in real life. If you find a journalist in your sector, keep in touch.

Industry secrets – how fitpros should connect with industry media contacts is a post from The Fit Writer blog.

Nicola Joyce – the Fit Writer – is a freelance copywriter and journalist who writes for the sport and fitness industry. Her main website is here.


Advice for small businesses: how (and why) you should write in an authentic voice

October 3, 2012

I do a lot of business networking. Today, one of the groups I belong to (Athena Reading) asked me to talk to the group about making an impact through writing.

I don’t talk a lot about my job on the blog, but I’ve been a freelance writer since 2004 – I write features for magazines (mainly sport and fitness titles) and I also write content for businesses. It’s with my copywriter’s hat on that I attend local networking meetings.

Various people have asked for notes from my talk so I thought I’d pop them up here. If you work for yourself, are thinking of starting up in business or are part of a small team with no external marketing assistance, I hope you find them useful. 🙂

How to write in an authentic voice which engages readers and builds trust, encourages recommendations and ultimately leads to more business.

Writing is a crucial part of your marketing strategy – even if you don’t think you have a one! If you’ve got anything “out there” in writing which is promoting your company, then you have got a marketing strategy!

As a copywriter, every word I write needs to make an impact and, more than that, it must make the correct impact.

First impressions count. If the first contact your customer has with you is your website, your Linkedin profile, or even a message on social media, those words need to convey your message, your brand and your character.

Those of us who run our own business – sole traders, one-(wo)man bands, franchisees, entrepreneurs and start-ups – are in a unique position. We are our business. That presents us with a great opportunity. If you always write with authenticity and honesty, you can’t go far wrong. Your character and your values will always come through your writing, and this will only serve to strengthen your brand or product offering.

Wording can – and should – convey your brand’s “voice”. So why is it important to be authentic with your writing?

People like to work with and buy from people and brands they trust. It will soon become clear whether or not you are being authentic with your writing, and this is important whether you’re writing a more informal piece of copy (like this blog post) or more technical or sales-driven content. Everything you write builds up to become part of your business and it needs to support and strengthen your brand, not contradict or confuse it.

How can you find your voice?

You’ll know when you haven’t! And you’ll know when you’re attempting to write in a voice which doesn’t serve you or your business. Obviously a chatty, informal tone won’t be suitable for every type of content. A technical document, or a press release will need a different tone of voice than your Tweets, blog posts and customer newsletter articles. But there should be something running through the centre of all of them which is authentic to you, your brand and your business’s identity.

If you don’t yet know what that is, then you need to take a step back and do some groundwork on branding and corporate identity. This is a really important exercise which will feed in to your marketing and networking (on- and off-line).

Think about what impact you want to make. What is the purpose behind the piece of writing you are about to to? Do you want it to drive sales, create more business, to encourage business partners to work with you? How do you want to be seen: as an expert, the go-to person in your field, an educator, an information hub/curator? Or as a place to get great service, fantastic products, or a unique business offering?

How to use your voice to connect with readers and make an impact

It’s never been more important to think about the quality of your content and the voice behind your words. Not so long ago, you might have needed content for a brochure, maybe flyers for special events, and probably a website. These days, most companies will have content on:

– websites
– brochures or other paper/leave behinds
– press releases
– editorial and articles
– adverts
– email marketing and customer newsletters
– blogs, Facebook pages, Twitter accounts, Linkedin
– etc!

What’s great about all these newer platforms for content is that they give you the opportunity to create a community and a following for your brand, products or business. But you have you get it right. When writing for social media or any new and regularly updated content (website news pages, customer newsletters and emails), consistency is key.

Think consistency rather than frequency.

Stop worrying about how much, how often and even how good! Sometimes perfectionism can overwhelm the writing process and stop us from doing anything at all. Write consistently, get your message out there regularly, create a following of readers who look forward to what you’ve got to say. Don’t think that everything you write has to be ground-breaking, or very long, or painstakingly researched. If you are writing for a news section of your own website, your own blog/Facebook/Twitter, or your own business newsletter, then it’s far more important to write regularly and consistently.

How authenticity breeds trust and recommendations

The bottom line is that being authentic builds trust. This is true for the written word as much as it is true for what you say, your body language and how you treat people. In business, the words we write do a job for us, so make sure your words are working for you and not against you.

Make it easy for people to use your words to help you in business. You will spend precious time writing, so make your words easy to forward on, share, retweet or pass from hand to hand. Make your content something which people want to pass on, whether that’s to their friends and family (if you’re B2C) or to business contacts, clients or partners (if your business is B2B). So think about your content being useful and interesting, something people want to read and then want their most valuable contacts to read, too. Get the most out of everything you write.

Practical tips for producing quality content on a regular basis

– brainstorm – don’t wait to get started
– create an editorial schedule
– treat writing as a job
– remember, it’s part of your marketing, not a fluffy extra
– set aside and schedule regular time, then commit to it
– get it done. Don’t wait for inspiration to strike.
– don’t be a perfectionist
– remember, something is better than nothing to get started

Ideas and resources which might help (they help me!)

WordPress for blogging
Hootsuite for social media management
Teuxdeux for to-do lists
Google tasks for keeping notes
– Draft an email, save it and add to it over time (useful if you work with a copywriter or marketeer)
– Good old fashioned pen and notebook! Carry pen and paper with you at all times and jot down any ideas for writing, no matter how small or random. Chances are they’ll turn into one of your most popular and successful pieces of content.

If you’ve found this post useful, you might also like:
How to engage with fitness journalists and bloggers
The importance of quality content for fitness professionals
How I became a freelance writer (and other FAQs)
A few fitness copywriting examples
– And a few more here.

Advice for small businesses: how (and why) you should write in an authentic voice is a post from The Fit Writer blog.

Nicola Joyce – the Fit Writer – is a freelance copywriter and journalist who writes for the sport and fitness industry. Her main website is here.


Fitpros: how much quality written content are you producing?

May 25, 2011

When was the last time you created a quality bit of content which shows your passion and expertise?

I was at the Fitness Entrepreneur Bootcamp last weekend – a business conference for the fitness industry. One of my favourite speakers from last year’s event was back again: Nick Nanton of Celebrity Press, a branding guru based in the States. He really knows his stuff when it comes to identifying your positioning, building credibility and using your community. Important stuff for any individual, brand or business in the sport and fitness world.

I worked with Nick last year on a book project, helping some of his authors by ghostwriting their chapters. The book – “Total Body Breakthroughs” – became a number one best-seller on Amazon. Nick kindly offered to give a video testimonial for me and here it is

Thanks Nick!

What I really wanted from Nick was the best advice he could give my fitpro readers when it comes to writing content. Check out this very short video.

As you heard in that video, Nick says credibility is key for any brand, business or individual. And you build credibility through content – lots and lots of strong content. The more content you have, the more people know you know, he says. Remember, your target market aren’t mind-readers, you need to show them you’re an expert. Put your content out there so it can physically stack up to prove your expertise.

Nick advises you to create:
– blogs
– articles
– e-zines
– magazines
– newsletters
– press releases
– books
– seminars
– webinars

Online, offline, written, recorded, audio… it’s all relevant.

Nick says (and of course I’d agree) that you do need to make sure it’s well-written and edited (and he kindly says that, if you can’t do that or don’t have time, find someone like me who can do it for you).

Fitpros: how much quality written content are you producing? is a post from The Fit Writer blog.

Nicola Joyce – the Fit Writer – is a freelance copywriter and journalist who writes for the sport and fitness industry. Her main website is here.


How to engage with fitness journalists and bloggers

March 3, 2011

I mentioned in a previous blog post that I recently spoke at the FIA (Fitness Industry Association) Communications Forum in February. I was asked along in my capacity as a freelance journalist and blogger (although I also do copywriting) and my brief was to talk about how the delegates could find, engage with and make the most of fitness journalists and bloggers.

People in the room included PRs responsible for sport and fitness brands, inhouse marketeers of the same and operators of gyms, leisure centres, facilites and events.

Here’s the outline of my talk. I hope you might find it useful. Please remember it’s just my opinion and based on my experiences as a freelance sport and fitness writer. If you have any questions, I’d be happy to answer them to the best of my ability – just leave a comment.

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Freelance journalists are positioned somewhere between the editorial staff of publications and the PRs and marketing personnel of fitness brands, products and events.

I’ve been freelancing since 2004. A quick rundown of my personal backstory:

– I was made redundant and moved out of London at the same time
– I’d always wanted to work as a journalist and sport was the obvious niche as it’s my personal passion
– At the time, I was a few months away from my first English Channel swim and I realised that, if I couldn’t successfully pitch sports Editors with a first-person article about Channel swimming, I would never make it as a freelance sport journalist!
– I did pitch that article idea, got a couple of commissions and worked my way up from there

I’ve now written for a range of consumer magazines and NGB membership magazines, including:
220 Triathlon, Triathlete’s World, Women’s Running, Body Fit, Good Housekeeping, Practical Parenting, Coast, The Olympic Review, Swimming Times (ASA), Tri News (BTF) and the inflight magazines of easyjet, Air Malta and BMI. I’ve also contributed to a couple of books – one produced by The Observer last year (for which I wrote two chapters) and one (as a ghostwriter) which last week hit the no.9 spot on Amazon’s bestseller list.

My niche is sport and fitness, particularly triathlon, running, cycling, swimming and open-water swimming and any fitness issue relating to women in sport.

On a personal level, I do a lot of sport: I was a swimmer as a child and at University, then took up running and ran for a club. I then threw cycling into the mix and took up triathlon. Latterly I learned to love road riding in its own right and have done sportives. My absolute niche is as an open water swimmer: I’ve swum the English Channel twice as a solo swimmer, and once (there and back) as a relay. I’ve also swum Windermere and around Jersey. In somewhat of a shock departure from all of that, I’m currently training for a bodybuilding competition – a bit of a change!

In addition to journalism, I work as a copywriter, helping companies and brands communicate by writing them clear, persuasive wording for marketing and sales: websites, brochures, newsletters, email marketing and content for social media (blogging, facebook, Twitter etc). I also write a sport, fitness and training blog – The Fit Writer.

What’s the process behind a magazine commission?

There are two ways in which a magazine article can come about: from a pitch from the journalist to the editor, or from a commission from the editor to the journalist. The latter usually (but not always) happens when the editor already knows the journalist’s by reputation, or if the journalist has previously written for the publication.

Pitched
How do we come up with ideas? We will keep an eye on the market, read (online, blogs, forums, Twitter, magazines etc), research, listen, talk. When we pitch an idea we don’t have to have case studies or experts but it strengthens the pitch to be able to mention that we will be able to find these. We will want to put together a strong pitch that is pegged on a news item or something else timely. Case studies and human interest angles are always good.

Commissioned
If we get a commission from an editor, we will usually need to find case studies, expert comment and/or products to fit the brief. We may have to do this extremely quickly. We will not want to let the editor down! Whilst we will want to meet our deadline and our wordcount, it will be just as important that the work we file meets the brief, so we will not want to pad the feature out with “almost but not quite” ideas, weak case studies or incomplete information. We will therefore be looking for PRs or marketeers who can help us by getting spot-on product information or putting us in touch with fantastic experts or case studies.

Kit/product tests
As a note – in my experience, kit tests are always commissioned. So we will never be able to pitch an editor the idea of testing a single product as a straight test. That kind of feature always comes from the editor as a commission so, if you want to get your product in front of an editor, you need to send it to them first and then they will send it to one of their freelancers to test.

Blogging is a different matter . We are the editors of our own blog and those of us who have chosen to do kit tests/product tests on our blogs can be contacted directly with product information to see if it is a good fit for our blog focus and our readership. It has to be your call as to whether or not you think blogs are a suitable outlet for your product or your client, but consumers are increasingly turning to blogs for an authentic peer-to-peer voice when looking online for reviews and feedback.

Who does a freelance journalist work with?

Editors
They are our “bosses” in a way. They pay our bills, they have the power to commission us – or not. We want to keep them happy!

PRs
Can be worth their weight in gold but can make things more difficult than they have to be. Fantastic PRs are a real find and should be treasured! I think it’s silly to perpetuate the “journalists vs PRs” dynamic, as PRs often hold the key to great stories, fantastic ideas and compelling case studies. They are also the route to brilliant quotes from respected experts.

Marketeers
In-house marketing representatives of fitness brands, companies, products can be as useful as PRs but often seem less clued up about how to work directly with journalists and often seem a little “hidden away”. I wish more of them were more active in interacting with us. They can help by keeping us informed about new product developments, lists of events and any press opportunities. If you don’t tell us about it, we probably won’t know until it’s too late!

Product owners/entrepreneurs
Sometimes have a hard time connecting with us but need us – and we need them! They do need to understand what we need, though, which brings me on to my next point.

How can you make the most of freelance journalists?

We want to work with you and hear from you, but you need to know what we need – and what we don’t need – when a deadline is looming. Here are a few tips.

Dos and don’ts

– Do contact us, but only with information we have previously stated we’ll find useful or which will fit the commission we’re working on
– Don’t send information which doesn’t fit the bill, no matter how strongly you feel the magazine should feature it

– Do note our deadline and tell us honestly if you can help us meet it
– Don’t promise anything you can’t deliver

– Do send complete information, images, case studies, contact details
– Don’t send information and then disappear off the face of the earth (at least let us know who else in your team we should speak to)

A good relationship can last a long time

When we find PRs or marketeers who feed us great ideas and help us do our job, we want to keep hold of them! Personally, I am always happy to meet PRs a few times a year to have a mutual thrashing out of ideas, to tell them what I’m working on and to hear which clients they’re working for. As an example, I recently met up with a PR at a tradeshow we were both attending. I took part in a challenge one of her clients was running at the event (and blogged about it) and then talked to her for over an hour. She told me about her latest clients and suggested some really exciting, useable ways I could work them into pitches. As a result, I came up with at least four pitches on the way home, one of which was accepted and one of which is being considered. I really value that PR and will always read her press releases and take her phone calls.

What makes a good press release?

We’re always aware that editors get hundreds of pitches per day. Similarly, be aware that we get hundreds of press releases. Here are a few tips to help yours be amongst the ones we read and keep hold of:

– it’s not enough to have a product, you need to understand what we need in order to work that product into a magazine article
– we need an angle and a story to support the product
– newsworthiness is good – peg the press release on something topical or timely
– a spokesperson or ambassador is helpful
– case studies, stories, real people are always useful – but they need to be genuine and we potentially need to be able to interview and photograph them
– images need to be high res and labelled
– please don’t forget the basics – dates, contact details, names, ages, prices, RRP, where to buy…

What kind of news interests us?

This will depend on the journalist and their niche but, generally, anything related to a news story or event is better for us to pitch, as is anything with a strong human interest angle, a great set of quotes, a solid expert or spokesperson, and of course anything truly new, fun or innovative which hasn’t been done before! (Not asking for much, are we…!)

What do we need from you?

When we approach you:
– understand our deadlines
– tell us honestly if you can help in time or not
– full and complete information
– access to interviewees
– high res images
– (potentially) product to test

When you approach us
– relevant information which fits our niche (ie don’t send information about golf to an equestrianism journalist unless they’ve asked for it)
– friendly, helpful – meetings are good
– make sure you spell our names properly and don’t BCC with someone else’s name!
– personal details are good (Hi Nicola, I saw your feature about wetsuits in 220 Triathlon recently…)

How to find a journalist or commission
Twitter – search the hashtag #journorequest
– website Responsesource
– Networking – online and “real life”

Thank you – please do keep in touch with me and send me information about any relevant products, events, interview opportunities or brand developments. I am happy to consider product/kit tests for my blog, and guest blog posts. I am also available for advice or practical help about copywriting for sport and fitness.

How to engage with fitness journalists and bloggers is a post from The Fit Writer blog.


Recent work for sport and fitness clients

January 21, 2011

I initially intended this blog to be split about 50/50 between posts about my work as a sport and fitness writer, and posts about my own sporty endeavours.

Somewhere along the line, the balance has been lost! So today I’m going to post about a few recent projects I’ve worked on for sport and fitness clients.


Website copy for a personal trainer

I wrote website copy for Mack Parnell of Reboot PT, a personal trainer in North London. He asked me to redo his existing homepage text and write copy for a new FAQ page. He also asked me to write copy for his services pages, including weight loss, nutrition, muscle building and kettlebells. It was right up my street and I turned the project around – from quote to sign-off – in a week.

Mack said: “This all looks great, exactly what I was looking for.”

Press release for local fitness bootcamp

Another recent job was writing (and distributing) a press release for a charity fitness boot-camp held locally. I wrote the press release, including sourcing a quote from the charity which would be benefitting, researched a media list and then sent the release to named individuals at the target publications. The result? Coverage in the main local newspaper (and on the paper’s website) and an interview on local radio. And my client now has a researched media list she can use in the future.

Heidi from Fasttrack-fitcamp said: “Thanks for your help, it got us on the radio and in Wokingham Times which is great as we would like to raise our profile in Wokingham more.”

Content for triathlon wetsuit website

I was contacted by a client looking to create a website devoted to triathlon wetsuits: which to choose, how to get the right fit and tips on caring for the wetsuit. I was the right person to ask, having written a number of triathlon wetsuit kit-test features for triathlon magazines (and worn my own fair share of wetsuits in races!) I researched and wrote the wetsuit reviews and also supplied content for three short articles: a beginner’s guide to triathlon wetsuits, tips for wetsuit care and performance tips (ie how to get the thing on and off!).

Richard Sykes from triathlonwetsuits.co.uk said: “It has has been a pleasure working with a real professional – someone who contributes ideas as well as copy – and delivered at incredible speed.”

Of course, I also still work as a freelance sport and fitness journalist, writing features for consumer magazines. I’m terrible at a) buying the magazines I’m featured in and then b) tearing the pages out and c) scanning them in (even typing that out makes me feel tired!) but here’s one I have got on file. It’s from Body Fit magazine and looks at how to keep your fitness mojo going over these cold, dark months. Since I’m currently shivering in my study, it seems a timely one to share. Enjoy! 🙂


Recent work for sport and fitness clients is a post from The Fit Writer blog.


Sport and fitness copywriting

September 16, 2010

Some of my favourite jobs are writing copy for sport and fitness clients. Whether it’s the wording for websites, sales letters, brochures, newsletters or digital marketing, I just love writing commercial copy aimed at sporty customers (because they’re likely to be similar to me, so if I write something which would make me buy/sign up/take action, it’s likely to be a job well done!)

Here are a couple of recent examples of my work as a sport and fitness copywriter.

Shirley Sadler is a PT who works in the Manchester area. I met her at the Fitness Entrepreneur Bootcamp earlier this year. I’ve already written a successful press release for Shirley and so she asked me for help with the biography page on her new website. Here’s how it looks at the moment (we’ve just tweaked it a bit and Shirley will be making v.2 live soon):

British Triathlon launched a new website recently aimed at journalists and other media who need info about the sport, fast. Because I’m a triathlete and a triathlon journalist myself, I understood exactly what they wanted. I wrote a few pages of the new BTF media site, including this one:

Do you know any personal trainers, sports coaches, clubs, gyms, governing bodies or sports brands looking for a clued-up copywriter? Send them my way!