Frequently Asked Questions   

1. What is your business?

I wear three hats:

writer/journalist

marketing-communications consultant

research consultant

My clients include marketing firms, research companies, advertising and PR (public relations) agencies as well as manufacturers, software companies, logistics service providers, transportation companies and publishers.

2. What are some examples of the types of services your offer?

Here are some specific examples:

Research
Expert searches at the library and on various online resources and databases. Analyze a market to determine if you should launch a new business. Uncover information about your competitors. Discover difficult-to-find information. Talking to end users, competitors or industry experts to answer your research questions or solve your marketing problem. Design and conduct research surveys.

Writing-Communications
Writing corporate brochures, case studies, white papers, articles and Web content. Fact sheets, backgrounders or other marketing-communications materials.

Marketing-Communications and PR
Obtain press for your company, product or service in appropriate markets to maximize your marketing dollars.

Write press releases and distribute releases through a national newswire service on a local, regional, national or international basis.

Identify PR opportunities and recommend ways to get free press. Identify the best press opportunities for your company usually in the form of editorial (writing an article for publication) or paid editorial (the company usual pays for an ad or pays a fee to be featured in an article appearing in a special advertising section of a publication). Develop pitches or queries to editors to encourage press coverage.

New to a product or industry? I can also recommend advertising or marketing opportunities to help grow your business, such as identifying publications your company should be advertising in, finding print or non-print media or other marketing opportunities, including industry trade shows, sourcing business lists and generating marketing ideas.

You will also find more information about my services at the Research and Writing-Communications sections of this site.

3. What is your background?

I have a strong background in journalism and marketing research. I blend my strengths as a reporter and detail hound as a researcher to deliver the best product. I've been using these skills on a full-time basis as a self-employed independent contractor since 1991. I have authored hundreds of news, feature and business articles. From 1988 to 1991, I was a research analyst at an advertising agency working on a variety of business-to-business accounts. Prior to that, I was a research assistant in mergers and acquisitions at the Pillsbury Co. My education includes a B.S. degree from the University of Minnesota with concentrations in English and Business. I am currently a member of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) and the Professional Editor's Network (PEN).

4. How do you work with clients?

I'm an independent contractor. I work with clients on an in-person basis, via phone, e-mail and fax. I use Microsoft Word and Excel for project work. Depending on the type of project, I typically send a project estimate for time and fees once the project is defined. To commence project work, I require the execution of a simple one-page contract and receipt of a retainer, as a portion of the first project estimate. Please call me at 612.805.1425 or e-mail to discuss your project.

5. How much do you charge?

It depends on the project and type of service. My rates are in the mpderate to upper end for the midwest U.S. market for copywriting and communications-PR services by an independent contractor and commensurate with my skill level and proficiency. Typically, I charge on an hourly basis but depending on how your company works with consultants and its budget, I also work on a per-project or per-piece basis. For certain assignments, such as an article assigned by a publication, I receive the going rate (that is, whatever the publication pays). For a rate quote, please call me at 612.805.1425 or e-mail with a brief description of your project and a rate quote.

6. Some work samples and articles appear at your site.
Are there additional work samples that I can get prior to deciding to hire you?

Yes. Because of confidentiality and client agreements, many corporate writing, marketing and research projects cannot be shown at my site. Additional information about these projects can be supplied upon request. Please call me at 612.805.1425 or e-mail to discuss your project.

7. Do you have client references?

Please contact me for referrals to clients.

8. Who are the "Associates" you refer to?

These are colleagues and other professionals I work with or would refer you to. For example, you need to have a brochure written and produced. I would perform the writing and development of the brochure and oversee the entire project, working with a designer. I don't do graphic design so I contract out that portion and deliver the product to you on a seamless basis. If I can't get the job done, or don't have the expertise to fulfill your project need, in most cases, I can refer you to a specialist who does.