29 Reasons to Fire a Copywriting Client (Yes, It’s OK to Do!)

Does it feel like you need permission to fire a client — especially now?

I get it. I do.

It’s easy to put our needs on hold and think, “I don’t love working with this client, but it’s not so bad.”

At the same time, you may lose sleep, dread the work, and wish that the client would just…go away.

Here’s a news flash…

Life is too short to work with clients who don’t serve you. The sooner you can (lovingly) release a client, the sooner you can find a better fit to fill their shoes.

Plus, firing a client is OK. Really.

Still not sure? Here are 29 reasons to fire your copywriting client. And yes, all of these issues have either happened to me or to someone I know — even the weird-sounding ones.

  • If the client doesn’t pay you.
  • If the client slow-pays you.
  • If the client refuses to pay a deposit.
  • If the client’s payment terms don’t work for you. (For example, they refuse to pay any invoices for 90+ days).
  • If the client repeatedly drops last-minute work in your lap and expects a fast turnaround.
  • If the client refuses to sign a contract.
  • If the client wants new terms in their contract that don’t work for you.
  • If the client tells inappropriate jokes — and when you don’t react (or react negatively) you’re accused of “not having a sense of humor.”
  • If the client repeatedly asks you to re-edit copy they already approved and paid for…and refuses to pay for the edits.
  • If the client calls/texts at all hours and expects you to immediately return their message.
  • If the client refuses to pay for extra work out of scope.
  • If the client asks you to do anything unethical or illegal.
  • If the client asks you to “copy the text from a competing site and change it a little bit.”
  • If the client spouts hate speech.
  • If the client talks down to you.
  • If the client continually misses deadlines.
  • If the client is constantly dissatisfied, saying things like, “I know the page positions at #3, but that’s not good enough.”
  • If the client repeatedly asks you out or flirts with you, even if you’ve said that you’re not interested. 
  • If the client disagrees with everything you recommend and refuses to implement any changes.
  • If the client expects you to be their therapist and dumps their personal problems into your lap.
  • If the client suffers from UGE.
  • If the client keeps changing the copy after it’s been uploaded to the site — and blames you because the text “isn’t working.”
  • If the client yells at you.
  • If the client gaslights you.
  • If the client’s passive-aggressive behavior becomes unbearable.
  • If the client keeps changing their mind about what they want, and you’re constantly switching gears.
  • If the work doesn’t feel fun anymore.
  • If you’ve outgrown the client and they can’t pay your current rates.
  • If the client wants new services you don’t want to (or can’t) provide.

What do you think?

What would you add to this list? (Ooh, I can’t wait for the responses!) Leave a comment or head over to the SEO writing tips Facebook group and share your client horror story!

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