An In-depth Copywriter's Guide to Delegating Tasks and Managing Workload

Managing your workload as a freelance copywriter or aspiring marketing agency owner can be challenging. Missed deadlines can hinder client-company relationships. When the work piles up, your stress levels can increase, and you may find the quality of your work slipping.

Burnout and client dissatisfaction due to poor workload management can impact your success as a writer or team leader. To avoid feeling overwhelmed when you receive an influx of new client tasks, consider the tips in this article for effective task delegation and workload management and copywriting success.

 

 

How Do You Plan and Organise Your Workload?

Suppose you reach the stage where you start receiving multiple deadlines as a freelance copywriter, agency owner or copywriter team leader. In that case, it’s well worth creating a plan to manage your workload. You can complete this step by listing every project and task you have to complete and writing their deadlines next to them. Let’s look at this in more detail.

1. Consider Client Deadlines

If you are looking for agency copywriting work, you may receive a spreadsheet or content calendar featuring the deadlines you must meet for multiple clients. You can use these deadlines when establishing your plan and targets.

For instance, you may have three service pages to write, each with a two-day turnaround time, with the final piece due in a week. In that case, you may split and assign your tasks a specific number of hours, which may be 12 or two days for each service page.

As a tip, it’s best to double-check the deadline in line with your other client work as a freelance writer to ensure you can successfully fit all the work in. Alternatively, as a copywriter team leader or agency owner, check in with your writing team while resisting micromanagement to ensure they have everything they need to get to work. 

You may mention that questions are welcome should your team need more guidance.

2. Think About the Bigger Picture

When you create your plan, you’re not only acknowledging writing time; you must think about the bigger picture. Large portions of your time will include creating an outline for challenging or complex pieces, incorporating feedback, editing your work, and formatting work as a freelance writer. As a copywriting team leader, it will include reviewing outlines, sharing feedback, proofreading, and checking for consistency in formatting. So, you will need to consider these factors and steps.

As you include these steps in your plan, which you can record in a project management tool such as Trello or a calendar, it’s best to acknowledge the word count when making estimates. 

For example, a 600-word product page may take 100 minutes to write, but you may also need to incorporate feedback, which may take 30 minutes. You may need to edit the piece using Grammarly, which may take 10 minutes. You will need to proofread the copy, which may take another 10 minutes.

3. Think About Task Prioritisation

With task prioritisation, you can nip procrastination in the bud. You can practice efficient task prioritisation by selecting the meatier, more challenging tasks and setting aside time to complete them well before the deadline. There are a few examples of types of task prioritisation methods, which we will get to later.

For example, your most challenging task as a freelance writer might be writing landing page copy for a new client. If you have concurrently received product pages that you know will be a cinch, it’s worth prioritising the challenging landing page and breaking this down into achievable sections. 

You might even consider creating an outline for the structure of the landing page, such as the sections you will need to include and the number of words per section on the page.

If you are an aspiring copywriting team leader, you must guide teams when switching priorities. You may note and advise that a task is more urgent than another project, especially if the latter is ongoing and the former is due in two days.

Key Fact

88% of workers procrastinate for more than an hour each day, with 78% of people experiencing writer’s block.

 

How Do You Delegate Copywriting Tasks Like a Pro?

You will need to delegate large projects if you find yourself with significant amounts of client work you can’t handle as an individual or agency owner, which requires you to match the strengths and knowledge of your copywriting team to the niches of the clients you work with. 

This requirement is particularly important with the new Google EEAT algorithm, which places emphasis on authority and expertise when writing and publishing copy. Here’s more on how to achieve expert copywriting delegation.

1. Provide Clear Project Briefs and Encourage Questions

As you delegate, ensure you provide your team with clear project briefs. You may communicate back and forth with clients or hold videoconferences with them to establish the requirements of the tasks.

After asking your clients questions about their deadlines, requirements for SEO, plagiarism checking tool requirements such as Grammarly, or keyword density requirements, encourage your team to come forward with questions to clarify any unclear instructions.

2. Balance the Workflow

To balance the workflow as a copywriter team leader, you must resist the urge to give the bulk of the work to experienced writers alone. Fair task distribution and avoiding overloading your team are two priorities you need to consider. It helps to know your team's strengths and helps even more if you understand their capacity, current and future assignments, and deadlines.

Balancing the workflow as a copywriter requires looking at your writer task management tool, looking at the current assignments and word count for these tasks and then allocating the right amount of time to each task. 

Key Fact

Defining and communicating goals is easier with Objectives and Key Results (OKR) or specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound (SMART) methods, while aligning them to the entire department.

 

Productivity Strategies to Manage Your Copywriting Workload

There are some handy productivity strategies to manage your copywriting workload as a copywriter. Before you dive headfirst into your copywriting projects, add some of these strategies to your time management toolkit:

  • Pomodoro strategy: Begin by working for 25 minutes on your copy and then take a short five-minute break. After three 30-minute sessions like this, have an extended break. This strategy keeps you focused and avoids copywriter burnout when completing projects.

  • Time blocking strategy: Strategically split your day into blocks of time and allocate each type of copywriting task to those time blocks. Include research time and editing time. Ensure you focus on these time blocks to complete your workload in the allocated time.

  • Eisenhower Matrix strategy: Set your strategy for your copy based on a few priority-related questions. Consider whether the task is essential for today, important but not pressing, ideal for another copywriter or doesn’t match your specific priorities. By answering these questions, you can either complete the task, add the task to your schedule, delegate the task to someone else, or reassess whether this task is a strict requirement.

With these productivity and priority-related strategies, you can manage your workload and meet those essential client deadlines. If you are an aspiring copywriter team leader, you can focus on the Eisenhower Matrix strategy when delegating tasks to your copywriting team to meet targets without overwhelming your writers.

Delegating Successfully and Managing Your Workload: What to Remember

The challenge of delegating successfully and managing your workload is well worth trying to perfect to build excellent relationships with your clients. While you employ some of the strategies mentioned in this article and steer clear of procrastination, you can work efficiently, prevent burnout, deliver exceptional work and meet your client’s expectations without fail.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Should Copywriting Take?

The duration of a copywriting task will depend on the project requirements. They can last as little as a few hours or extend to a few weeks. It all depends on the research involved, the feedback you receive from your client, and the amount of editing you and your team need to complete.

What Should Copywriters Do if They Anticipate Missing a Deadline?

If you or your copywriting team anticipate missing a deadline, contact the client immediately. Clear and honest communication accompanied by an apology for the delay is a good starting point. You will also need to use constructive means to avoid repeatedly missing deadlines. You can inform clients how you will fix the missed deadline and set realistic new outcomes for the content strategy.

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