Episode 006

Abbey Woodcock

Founder of Freelance Co-Op

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About Abbey

Abbey Woodcock, founder of Freelance Co-Op, has been a direct response copywriter since 7th grade when she wrote a 30-page sales letter asking her crush to the dance. Since then, she’s converted better… writing sales pages and emails you’ve probably read from some of the biggest names online.

Now, she teaches the business side of creative freelancing including setting up systems to grow a freelancing business and building out an in-house content team that seamlessly “gets” your voice.

She’s also a chainsaw instructor and mom to 2 awesome kiddos in Upstate NY.

What You’ll Learn

  • [01:20] Abbey Woodcock talks about her business, Freelance Co-Op, what it does and how they help freelancers to manage the business side of their careers through webinars and interactive learning. 
  • [02:29] What are the content marketing goals to grow Freelance Co-Op? Abbey shares the types of content she does strengthen her business. 
  • [03:35] Freelance Co-Op’s content is focused on different types of long form content — PDFs, audio, webinars, etc. to help their community with efficient resources. 
  • [04:04] Abbey shares her brand’s most successful piece of content and what she did to promote it. 
  • [06:49] The importance of Facebook groups when it comes to building community and how to manage and how to keep it alive and interactive 
  • [08:09] Abbey shares her secret to having an active and valuable Facebook group. 
  • [10:00] How does Instagram help drive engagement and audience to Freelance Co-Op? 
  • [11:07] Abbey mentions her different posting frequencies and strategy for all her social media channels. 
  • [12:31] Abbey shares how promotional and content calendars help her marketing goals and how consistency helps with her strategy. 
  • [14:38] Abbey walks us through some of her repurposed long form content and the benefits of making those long form pieces of content into smaller optimized ones. 
  • [19:37] Marketing for herself is one of the biggest hurdles Abbey has encountered in her career. She shares how her high standards can be a challenge and how external help from somebody else can lessen her worries. 

[22:29] “The most interesting thing for me is stuff that I don’t really love isn’t necessarily the stuff that gets the most engagement.”

About Shaina

Shaina Weisinger is the Founder and CEO of Repurpose House, which turns long-form content into optimized videos and images for high engagement social media strategies. Shaina has a background in video production for digital marketing and is on a mission to show content creators the untapped potential and repurposing power of the content that they already have. She has taught about content in many publications including DigitalMarketer, Inc., and Startup Nation, and continuously offers valuable takeaways by interviewing industry experts from world-recognized brands such as GoDaddy, HubSpot, MarketingProfs, and more through her podcast, Content Karate. She loves to laugh loudly, be obnoxiously competitive on the volleyball court, treat her dogs as her kin, and recover from tripping on or running into almost everything within a five-foot radius. Learn more about Shaina here: ShainaWeisinger.com

Read Episode 006 Transcriptions

Sarah Guidas: Hey, everybody. Thanks so much for listening and tuning into another episode of Content Karate. My name is Sarah Guidas and the Director of Ops here at Repurpose House. And Content Karate is a marketing show that’s really intended for us to interview amazing guests and people who use content and repurpose it in a unique way to drive traffic leads and revenue to their business. So today I am thrilled to be sitting with Abbey Woodcock, founder of Freelance Co-Op. I’m super excited to tell you guys a little bit more about her background. So this is phenomenal. She has been a direct response copywriter since seventh grade, when she wrote a 30 page sales letter asking her crush to the dance. Amazing. So since then, she’s also been thrilled to be able to write amazing sales pages and emails for really big name online brands that you’ve probably are really familiar with. And now she was a pleasure of teaching the business side of creative freelancing through Freelance Co-Op, including setting up systems to grow up brilliancy business, building out in-house content teams that seemingly seamlessly also get your voice. So Abbey, we’re super excited to have you on today. Thank you so much for joining us.

Abbey Woodcock: Awesome. I’m super pumped to be on.

Sarah Guidas: Yay. So I’d love to start just by learning more about Freelance Co-Op. What it is, how it originated…

Abbey Woodcock: So basically, I’ve been a freelance copywriter for really long time, like you mentioned. And I realized that the systems like the business side of my freelancing, wasn’t going very well. I was doing really well as far as like clients were happy with my work. I was doing great work, but things like time management, hitting deadlines, and then all of the financial legal stuff that goes along with business. I wasn’t that great at. And then so about six years ago, I made it my mission to kind of fix this in my business. And once I did that, all of my colleagues were like, what did you do? Because I am struggling with all this stuff too. So that was kind of the impetus for the Freelance Co-Op where now we teach kind of legal financial systems, like everything business related for creative freelancers.

Sarah Guidas: That’s amazing. That’s great. And you’re creating so much of that continuing education for those freelancers who are following you in that community. So can you kind of break down what some of your content marketing goals have looked like for really scaling that part of Freelance Co-Op?

Abbey Woodcock: Yeah, absolutely. So a lot of what we do is long form content. And so, we’ll do like a tax training. So it’ll be like an hour long training on tax changes for the next year. Or we’ll like, for example, when the CARES Act here in the United States got passed in the wake of COVID-19, there was a ton of provisions in there for freelancers. So we did this huge, big, long form ultimate guide. And so there was a lot of Facebook lives that went along with that webinars, those kinds of things. So when it comes like long form, that’s my sweet spot. That’s where I was doing really well. But as far as promoting those long form of events, that’s kind of why I turned to Repurpose House because I knew I had just hours and hours and hours of content that I wasn’t doing anything with after the training was done.

Sarah Guidas: Yeah. That’s awesome. So you’re saying when you create like one piece of long form content, like that big, like kind of PDF ebook, for instance, your whole goal is to then create other long form pieces of content that are extensions of it, like the webinars, et cetera, is that usual practice like part of your strategy?

Abbey Woodcock: Absolutely. That’s exactly what we do. So we’ll do kind of try to do an audio download. I’ll go on podcasts interviews, to talk about the content that I created, webinars, all those kinds, we do it in multiple different mediums, the same content.

Sarah Guidas: I love it. So out of all of those, is there like one piece of long form content that you’ve done that really stands out? That’s like one of your continuous, highest performers?

Abbey Woodcock: Uh, yeah, so we did a webinar on, uh, finding clients. And so that was a huge, especially finding clients in uncertain times, we’ve named it a couple of different things, but that piece of content, um, has been just something that people request all the time to see from us. So we turn that into an audio. We have a guide and then now we have a program for that as well.

Sarah Guidas: Nice. Yeah, I see that being one of the biggest pain points for freelancers for scaling and getting started. How do you guys like promoting that to make sure it’s always getting in front of new freelancers who are looking for those clients?

Abbey Woodcock: Yeah, so we have a PDF guide that we use kind of as a lead magnet on closing clients. And so that ends up, we run Facebook ads and then a lot of organic traffic to that as well. I promote it when I do podcast interviews and that gets people onto our email list. And then we rerun the webinar or we share videos, clips from the webinar to promote the longer form webinar. And also like I’m talking about, I have two Facebook groups that I promoted on and then obviously like all the socials, Instagram, and it’s a lot. But we’re always kind of trying to drive people to those long form pieces.

Sarah Guidas: That’s awesome. So you’re hitting it from all avenues, organic paid, all of that PR everything. That’s awesome. Just out of curiosity, are on your marketing team internally helping to handle all of that?

Abbey Woodcock: So I do most of the marketing. I also have kind of like an executive assistant that does marketing. She does a lot of the like writing the posts for me and creating some of the graphics. She’s amazing with the graphics. So there’s two, I guess, would say that are, full-time working on marketing. And then my partner, Casey, he works marketing sometimes as well, as far as the operation side of it. So, so three-ish people, I would say.

Sarah Guidas: Nice, I know processes are totally your jam. So I bet all of that as super systemized and really clean, which is great.

Abbey Woodcock: Yeah. So we’ve been recording, you know, videos on how to, how to do each of those. Step-by-step on like when a webinar then what happens next.

Sarah Guidas: So nice. That’s awesome. That’s awesome. So obviously that covers a lot of how you guys are promoting it, the PR, et cetera. I want to dive into some of the social aspects of, because I know you’re really active on that. Not just in the groups like you mentioned, but can you kind of share what that looks like your social strategy right now and what performs really well for you guys? Like, you know, if there are certain platforms that perform best for you guys that you focus on or strategies that you really share specifically for social?

Abbey Woodcock: Yeah. So the biggest performer for us as far as organic social, obviously we have a paid ad strategy, which is separate from that, but we have a private group, which is a free group on Facebook for copywriters specifically, and we’re going to be setting up private groups for other types of freelancers as well. But,that has been because we got a ton of engagement and I’m in there all the time, having conversations with people, posting our content, that has been probably our biggest performer as far as like driving traffic and sales to our email list. And, yeah, we’re also on Instagram, Twitter. I have a lot of the thing that happens on Instagram for me is getting connections. And so a lot of times, my stuff will get shared and people reach out, wanting to partner or love my content and want to talk about things that hasn’t been really a sales channel for me, but it’s been really great as far as like a connection.

Sarah Guidas: Nice. So any tips on really helping to scale and keep that Facebook group active? Because I know that can be a huge pain point for so many people is creating the Facebook group is good and then funneling some of your existing listen to it is good, but then making sure that the group really stays active and they’re constantly engaged, can sometimes be a pain point. Do you have any like strategies on that specifically?

Abbey Woodcock: Yeah. So the big thing there is, I asked a lot of questions and I ask questions regarding pain points. So especially if it’s connected to a piece of content, so I’ll say, “Hey, you know, I’ve been talking to a lot of our students inside XYZ program. One of the biggest things that they found when they’re trying to find clients is they hate cold emailing. Is that a problem for you guys as well?”And then, you know, that’ll start the discussion and then people will post about it. And then that also what it does is it makes people really comfortable to post questions and problems that they’re having. And so people in the group will post like, “Hey, I am sending this email out. Do you guys think it’s good?” And so that obviously, you know, kind of snowballs engagement,

Sarah Guidas: That’s awesome. How many people would you say are in that right now?

Abbey Woodcock: That group right now, I believe there’s about 700 in there. Nice. So yes. And so, and the thing is too, is that we, um, it could be a lot bigger, but I wanted to curate that group to be like a very specific type of freelancer freelancers that already had clients. So I there’s nobody in there that’s like, I’m thinking of becoming a freelancer. Um, and so we do that with questions just to make sure that the conversation stays really high quality. So I could probably have, you know, over a thousand people in there if I let everybody in.

Sarah Guidas: But that’s not that smart.

Abbey Woodcock: And that’s because those are my target clients as well. So I wanted it just to be a group of basically target customers,

Sarah Guidas: For me. Yeah. That’s awesome. And then kind of segue into the Instagram part that you said, the fact that you’re getting so many connections from Instagram is great because I feel like so many people rely pretty heavily on LinkedIn for that. And Instagram, maybe not so much. Can you break that down a little bit too? I think that’s really awesome and interesting that you’re getting so many of those, like client connections, I’m assuming from that platform.

Abbey Woodcock: So I get client connections and also, like I said, people that want to be involved in the program that wanted to do trainings on the program. Um, and so what I do there is, um, you know, finding people on Instagram, you know, the cool thing is you’re going to add their posts to your stories. So I’ll do that. And just like a little, little tag that says like, yes, agreed or something. And then what happens is they’ll follow me or we’ll get into a conversation that way. Um, and because I have so much content on Instagram, when if you think of, if I had posted something of yours on my story, you’re going to click and say, who is this person? Right. Click and then see all my content. And so then it kind of, you know, I have that kind of engagement. And so that’s been really great and really fun for me because it’s just basically like reposting stuff that I think is cool.

Sarah Guidas: Yeah, directly building that network for yourself. That’s great. So on like all the social platforms, like how often are you posting micro content to drive people back to those original sources to your Facebook group, to your website, et cetera?

Abbey Woodcock: I try to post on Instagram every day. Just cause I know the Instagram algorithm, one of the things that they look at is frequency of posts of where that when they show it on the newsfeed. So Instagram I’m on probably the most, as far as quantity of posts. Facebook is probably two to three times a week. And then in the group is probably the same two to three times a week in the group. And then I’m in there almost daily, like responding and just communicating there.Twitter, I use just basically as like my personal like playground so that I’m a little less strategic about, uh, cause I just like for me, Twitter is like kind of a writing exercise because it’s so short, you know? And so I’d just like to play around with posts on. And so I do share my content on there, but, um, I’m a little less like as far as having a real strategy on Twitter.

Sarah Guidas: Yeah. Twitter is kind of, in Repurpose House, the bane of our existence. It’s like, you know, you have to do it. It’s that necessary evil of all of the platforms. So can you break down to like, what type of content are you posting on these platforms? Like how are you constantly creating the engaging content? Obviously, Abbey is an amazing, uh, or her boss clients it’s been awesome working with her, but she’s very strategic strategic in how she has her content repurpose, how she has assets created to then be posted on her social channels too.

Abbey Woodcock: Yeah. So one of the big things that I look at is kind of my promotional calendar. And so what, you know, uh, so the webinars that I talked about, the long form webinars, especially like the get clients one, it’s a sales webinar. So at the end we promote our product. And so I look at when is that showing up on the calendar in, during the week leading up to that I’ll post content that’s related to it or content from the last webinar that I did. So people get an idea of what they’re getting. And so that’s where I’m really strategic about, Okay, if I’m talking about getting clients this week, or if I’m talking about something else, then I’m going to find, you know, the assets that I have. Because again, I have so much not only video content, but, um, I write a lot on medium because I love writing. So I write really long post on medium. And so I kind of look at all the assets that I haven’t say, okay, what micro content will match, what I’m promoting this week and try to do it that way.

Sarah Guidas: Yeah. Nice. That’s great. And yeah, we’re going to be sharing some of a couple of specific examples of what she’s uploaded to her social channels. So you can see what those assets look like. So you can see the type of copy that she’s writing as well, um, when she’s going to post them and upload them to the algorithm. So one thing to note guys, if you are listening, this might be a really great opportunity to go ahead and tune into the video part of this episode, um, at contentkarate.com, Because it’s really, really cool to see those visuals. Well, of course, like in the show notes, the show notes page as well, but, um, I’m excited to share those Abbey we’ll have you kind of walk through them, but she’s repurposing. Like she said, all those long form pieces of content, we’re going to show you how to repurpose one of her Facebook lives, which is awesome. So Abbey, do you see my screen right now? Yep. Okay, perfect. So right now we’re on one of her image quotes that she pulled out into the right. You can see this amazing copy that she wrote in broke down for the Facebook posts, accompanied with research, um, you know, hashtags as well. So, Abbey, can you kind of walk through this post here, the strategy behind it, the image quotes, things like that?

Abbey Woodcock: Absolutely. So this was, one of the, I think this quote came from a Facebook live that I did or a webinar. And I loved this one because it was one of things that’s really shareable. Like even if you don’t read the long form copy that’s that came along with it. The image itself has really shareable. And so people kind of, it’s something that people are going to agree with across the board and put it on their stories reposts. So that’s why I loved this one. And then I kind of just really dug into what I meant by that, by using the long form, um, the long form post on, you know, what do I mean by making action happen, making things happen, um, and B being proactive in your business versus reactive and this kind of seeds, if you, you know, kind of dig into it, it re it seeds. Some of the stuff I help with. So we’ll talk about what to do when you get new leads, what to do when you get a tax bill, what to do when clients have scope creep. And I don’t explicitly talk about those things, but I mentioned those because I know those are common problems in my audience. And so this is kind of one of those things that seeds like, oh, I need to fix some of these systems that I have in my business.

Sarah Guidas: Nice educational and promotional. It’s perfect. Yeah, for sure. And then one thing to note too, guys, for those of you who are listening, her image quote is designed really well with a picture of her headshot, smiling and laughing and looking energetic. And Neil Patel did a really awesome study comparing different images on social and, you know, one image showcasing a person’s headshot and then another image just with text, no headshot in it. And images with headshots always performed so much better. So she’s every aspect of this post is really optimized as well, which is great. So kind of going to the next one too, she’s posted a repurposed video meme, from an awesome Facebook live that she did. And we can show the copy down here as well. Abby, go ahead and bring this one down too.

Abbey Woodcock: Yeah. So this was a Facebook live and I love repurposing the Facebook lives, uh, because Facebook lives, I usually walk through like, in this one, I walked through the long form of the CARES Act guide that I did. I just did a Facebook live because Facebook lives obviously get a lot of engagement. They show up for some people’s newsfeeds. So I love doing Facebook lives. And then what happens is using that content that kind of just gets created really quickly. And now I can put this and I love the headline here. This is what freelancers need to know about stimulus checks. Like that is something that is like, was at the time. So really? Yeah, really like everybody had questions about this. So having this and the fact that it’s alive makes it feel like this, even this image, um, like the screenshot here, it makes it feel like, oh, this is like up to the minute relevant information because it’s not like a super polished recorded video.

Abbey Woodcock: I still, like my hair isn’t even brushed in, but, um, and then below I just promote to the guide that I had. And so this allowed me to kind of share on in. So I took a Facebook live and now I can share it on Instagram and on Twitter and into groups. And it’s just a real small nugget and these real small nuggets, what they do is they build authority because it’s like this two minute video of like really relevant, critical information makes people say, oh, if this like, this is in this two minute video, there’s clearly a longer stuff. Like, she obviously has a lot of information about this and then people want to follow me because of this. We actually turned one of these– I’m not sure if it was this one into a Facebook ad as well– and pushed it right to the PDF guide. And so drove paid traffic to it as well, because it was something that people were so interested in. We were ended up getting like 10 cent clicks from, from, it was either this one or repurposed from that same Facebook live.

Sarah Guidas: That’s awesome. So you posted it organically first, I’ll have performed and realized it was getting a lot of awesome traction and then did paid spend behind it. Yep, exactly. Nice. That’s awesome. And yeah, for those of you who can’t see right now, if you’re just tuning in listening, this video means that we’re showing right now from this Facebook live is really great too. In the lower corner, she has the exact CTA, the URL where people can go to get that PDF that she’s referring to. So even if they didn’t read all the way through the copy that she wrote for the Facebook posts, it’s in the actual video meme itself too, so super, super clean. Yeah. Those are really, really great examples, Abbey, I love those. Awesome. Um, so one thing I’d love to dive into next is learning about, um, you know, how you scaled this so well and you’re creating so much content. So while you have your systems and process person, which is great, but I’d love to know, like, what was one of your biggest hurdles in developing the content marketing system that you have now and how did you overcome that?

Abbey Woodcock: So I think one thing, and I’ve found this across my clients as well, is when you’re in marketing, marketing for yourself is the hardest thing. Like I’ve marketed for dozens and dozens of clients. And, but when I sat down to do my own stuff, it’s like, so that was probably my biggest hurdle of, and I’m a super perfectionist too. So my standards for my client work are really high and my standards for myself are even higher. And so, um, so that was really hard for me. And actually like, it’s, it’s funny because having somebody else chopping up the videos and like pulling what they found was most valuable has been so amazing for me because it like takes that perfection away from it of like, let me find the perfect timestamp because you’re not only looking at content when you’re looking at your own stuff. You’re like, I want to make sure that my face looks good. I want to make sure like, the angles are good. I want to make sure, you know, and all this like kind of head trash that happens. And I think that was probably the biggest hurdle. It’s still continues to be the biggest hurdle for marketing for me is just getting the stuff out there and using like I’ve so many assets and being able to use them without kind of worrying about, are they the perfect ones is probably the biggest, biggest challenge.

Sarah Guidas: Yay. I love hearing that. That’s so great. Yeah. So what she’s talking about is just being able to create the content, send it off and know that it’s going to get repurposed by someone else. It’s going to be the right clips. It’s going to be optimized. That’s what we’re able to help her with. And that’s been amazing to see you funneling the content through, and then you just being able to handle it and post it on social and make sure that distribution is taken care of, which is great. So where would you want for all of our listeners? All of our viewers turning in, one place that they can go to see all of the various content they’re creating in real time, where would you want them to?

Abbey Woodcock: So if you want to be as like up to the minute with my content Instagram, like I said, I’m on there. Uh, like if every week, if it’s posted somewhere, it’s going to be an Instagram. So that’s like where my content is going to be the most because I really prioritize posting stuff on there. So I’m just Instagram at Abbey Woodcock. And then, um, as well, you know, I’m on Facebook, like I said, if you just want to follow my personal playground stuff, have on Twitter, Facebook, I post all the long form stuff and the short form stuff, Instagram, it’s usually just the shorter stuff. So, either one of those places.

Sarah Guidas: Oh, there you go. Guys, be sure to check her out on our social platforms, Instagram for sure. Abbey, is there anything else that you want to share with the audience, give insight, anything that you want to share with them?

Abbey Woodcock: Oh, there’s nothing I can think of. like really enjoying this kind of content journey of, of posting things and seeing what stuff sticks. That’s the been the most interesting thing for me is stuff that I really love isn’t necessarily the stuff that gets the most engagement. So that’s been really fun to kind of just see what is it that’s resonating most with, with my audience. And the more content that I have, the more, the more of those tests that I can do. So it’s been, it’s been really great.

Sarah Guidas: That’s so cool. And I love to like how you really explained to you everyone listening to like how you’re just posting things, organically, seeing how they perform. And then from there being able to decide what to invest that ad spend on. I think that’s the perfect. Yeah.

Abbey Woodcock: It makes it so much easier instead of just guessing with ad spend and throwing ad spend at something. And you’re like, I have no idea how this, I know the ads that I run are going to perform because they perform organically.

Sarah Guidas: Thank you so much for coming on. I got a ton of value from this. If you guys do too, please be sure to share this with your network. Be sure to go to contentkarate.com to tune in as well. So you can really see those two pieces of content that we shared with her that she’s putting on Facebook as well. contentkarate.com Will also show you where you can listen first and watch the show as well on your favorite platform. So thanks so much again, Abby, and, um, we so appreciate you coming on. This has been great.

Abbey Woodcock: Awesome. Talk soon. Love it.

Sarah Guidas: Thank you.

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