Promoting diversity and inclusion – in conversation with Katy the copywriter

Katy the copywriter, interview about promoting diversity and inclusion

This week I’m talking to Katy Mansell-Carter, a copywriter based in Toronto, Canada, passionate about promoting diversity and inclusion. Katy writes sales marketing copy to help other entrepreneurs turn their prospects into paying customers. Her work is about getting customers excited to buy from her clients again and again – and teach business owners how to get better results by tweaking their own writing too. I’ve met Katy in real life…because we went to school together! Thanks to the wonders of social media we’ve reconnected in adulthood, and I have so much admiration for what she does. 

Hi Katy! Thanks for getting involved in this series, I think copwriting is such an art form and I love the way you talk about it and break it down for people. Please could you tell us a little bit about yourself that we might not already know?

I specialize in working with women and non-binary folks, but so long as a business is pro-diversity and inclusion, then I should get along with them just fine. You won’t find any icky gendered terms in my portfolio (girlboss, SheEO and mompreneur are on my list of banned words); if a business is looking for inclusive, gender-neutral copy that’s still empowering AF, then I’m just the person! Carbs, live comedy and camping shops are my main enthusiasms outside of writing. Right now I’m based in Toronto, but low-key trying to convince my partner we should move to Barcelona.

What led you to starting your business?
In February 2018, I quit my ‘dream job’, to follow the love of my life to Toronto, Canada. Getting a fresh start in a new city, surrounded by a thriving startup culture, inspired me to take a leap I’d always dreamed of and so I decided to create a life on my own terms, and to be my own boss. The decision was partly (okay mostly) driven by weighing up the risks on a personal level. Having had a rocky couple of years from a mental health perspective, I wanted to take control of who I worked with, set my own limits, boundaries and expectations, and generally cut out a lot of the noise and pressure that had been piling on the anxiety.
What’s your biggest motivation for what you do?
Being able to work with people who genuinely want to leave the world in better shape than they found it. I love the fact that I choose to work with women and non-binary folks – who, typically, might not feel as confident when it comes to promoting their products or services, or closing a sale. Giving those entrepreneurs the tools and the confidence to go out and get the sales they deserve is a LOT of fun, and has led me to meet some amazing people.
What have been some of your biggest wins?
My first client in Toronto was an amazing startup called House of Anesi, who has used tech and engineering to develop a bra designed to adapt to breast size changes and reduce back pain. I worked with them intensively for three months to prepare for their product launch and helped them triple their email list and smash their Kickstarter goal, raising $93k. We wrote the campaign around values of comfort and inclusivity, and we got featured in VICE, Glamour, Teen Vogue and Bustle, it was epic. I also hosted a sold-out workshop in collaboration with a co-working space for women in Toronto, Make Lemonade – it was a big win to have them endorse my skills.
Where do you see your business in the future?
I’m now only taking on clients who are actively promoting diversity and inclusion –  and belonging – as part of their business and communications plans. I want to continue to grow my knowledge and offer practical tips to companies and entrepreneurs on how to make sure their language is respectful and inviting to everyone. I’m also planning to add physical products to my business and host more workshops and speaking gigs.
Katy the copywriter, interview about promoting diversity and inclusion
What would you advise someone starting their own business, whether that be part-time or full-time?
Charge for your consultations. I repeat – charge for your consultations. Back in June, I got to the end of the month, absolutely exhausted, but having made about 100 bucks. Going back through my calendar, I realised that I’d dedicated over 42 hours of my time to giving out free advice. Ouch. Billing for those initial consultations is vital for the health of your business, and also for your self-worth. It trains clients to associate your time with their money from the get-go and makes you commit to bringing your A-game. I wrote an article about it here, if you’d like to learn more or get practical advice on how to implement this into your business.
Who are some other creative business owners you admire?

Sam Schafer is a vision-impaired illustrator from Wiltshire, who creates comics and illustrations to communicate the challenges of living with a disability. He recently did a Twitter takeover for Scope, and tells lovely jokes.

Grace Betteridge is my sister (shameless plug) and a talented illustrator in her last year at Plymouth uni, whose creations span everything from breakfast items to cute animals with a macabre twist.

Collaborations with Claire McCallum’s Toronto-based Creative Studio are my fave. What I love about Claire is her commitment to creating sustainable campaigns for her clients. Many studios will overwhelm their clients with all the stuff they ‘should’ be doing, but Claire approaches every project she touches with a strategic mind and bags of integrity.

And lastly, where can we find you online?

You can find me on Instagram at @katythecopywriter, through my website and on Medium.

I always find Katy such a breath of fresh air, and this interview was no exception! I really hope you enjoyed it too. It’s the last in my series of interviews with creative business owners I love, but I’ve enjoyed it so much that I may well end up doing another series at some point! If you missed any, I’ve linked them below… 🙂