Pamela Patton | President, Chief Wordsmith
Paragraph Writing Service
Q: Why did you start your business?
A: Paragraph Writing Services was started out of necessity—the personal necessity to stop living the cubicle life, and professional necessity, since my position had been eliminated. I had absolutely no desire to return to corporate marketing full-time.
Q: What are some key factors or decisions that contributed to the success of your business?
A: Oddly—and fortunately—my first client was my former employer. Since the decision to eliminate me and four other writers was spur-of-the-moment (the department manager didn’t even know), my departure left a huge void. Because I am incorporated as Paragraph, they were able to hire the company, and not the person they just let go. A matter of semantics I suppose, but one that worked in my favor. This “guaranteed” work gave me a great foundation to begin marketing my services.
Q: What are some challenging aspects of your business?
A: “The cobbler’s children have no shoes.” Or, in other words, Paragraph can offer wonderful marketing insight to clients, but marketing Paragraph is time-consuming, which takes away time needed to focus on existing clients. I have a friend who uses the analogy, “I can clean the fish, I just need someone to catch them.”
Q: Do you feel you made any serious mistakes as you were starting or growing your business? Knowing what you know now, what would you have done differently?
A: Because I was “forced” into starting Paragraph—a decision I do not regret—I wish I had been more prudent with my finances and banked more money for those droughts that happen to everyone. I also wish I had started earlier with a financial advisor and more aggressively marketed Paragraph.
Another “wish” is that I were more confident in what I charge. I often penalized myself by charging an hourly rate, then working quickly. Now I take that estimated rate and triple it. That way, I’m charging what I’m worth.
Q: What other advice or words of inspiration would you like to share?
A: I love running my own business and having the freedom to come and go when I like, work in my pajamas, and take a coffee break whenever I want. But those are stereotypical perceptions of working as a freelancer/business owner. It is hard work. It requires the ability to juggle many clients simultaneously, to wear many hats—bookkeeper, marketer, and creative director, to meet unrealistic deadlines by working late into the night and weekends.
About Paragraph Writing Service
Pamela Patton is the owner of Paragraph Writing Services. She is a long-time copywriter, content creator, and wordsmith, experienced in marketing, advertising, social media and public relations. Paragraph gets your business, gets your customers, and gets results.
Subject areas include:
• Higher Education
• Construction and Real Estate
• Finance: Banking and Accounting
• Health & Beauty
• Law and Attorneys
• Social Services
"The cobbler’s children have no shoes. Or, in other words, Paragraph can offer wonderful marketing insight to clients, but marketing Paragraph is time-consuming, which takes away time needed to focus on existing clients."—Pamela Patton