Should copywriters do trial jobs?
Every now and again I get asked about this:
The answer is yes and no and it really depends on who you’re dealing with. You see, a lot of people use, “Trial jobs” as a way to get work done for nothing. If you ask ten prospective writers for a blog post, you could end up with five great posts (And do it without having to pay a cent for them.)
In many cases this is obviously what’s being done.
On the other hand, I landed some of my biggest clients by doing trial jobs.
Sometimes the client has no malicious intent and simply wants to know what you’re capable of.
Many times it’s a test to see if you’re willing to follow instructions.
So what it really comes down to is experience and being able to sniff out shady people.
It’s also about the job. Depending on what’s being offered it might be worth your while to make an effort. After all, you really have nothing to lose but your time. If you don’t get the job you can chalk it down to experience. That being said, make sure you don’t spend too much time on the task. Anything that takes more than an hour or two isn’t worth it.
If you’re still uncertain ask them to pay a nominal fee upfront.
This will help to weed out people who aren’t serious.
The best thing you can do is avoid putting yourself in this position.
You want to be getting so many offers you can pick and choose the best ones.
You also want such a good reputation that no would dare ask you to do trial work.
(It also helps if you skip clients altogether and focus on selling your own products.)