We had the good fortune of connecting with Sabrina Cohen and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Sabrina, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
There were times throughout my career (when I was in “survival mode”) where I worked 6-7 days a week. It was wildly unhealthy and wound up being counterproductive. My physical and mental health suffered. I think for many solopreneurs, and for creatives in particular, there’s often this push-pull between the hustle and self-care. Interestingly enough, I attracted more work — and more of the high-level clients and partnerships I really wanted — when I let go a little, set healthy boundaries with clients, and prioritized myself. I found that without time to decompress and recharge, my well was dry and I had nothing left to give creatively. It made the work harder and I grew resentful. I learned to say no to clients who aren’t aligned with my values, process, and boundaries. I no longer work weekends and that allows me to be more intentional and bring my best during work hours. You have to find time for the stuff that lights you up beyond work, otherwise, what’s it all for? The joy, the relationships, the silence, and the space you give yourself to experience life — that’s where the access to inspiration lies. It’s a practice of choosing yourself that actually fuels better work for those you serve.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
WORD-OLOGY crafts compelling copy that helps brands seduce their audience into action. My clients range from solopreneurs and small businesses to agencies and Fortune 50 brands.

We go beyond copy deliverables with a focus on brand identity and high-level messaging for things like websites, manifestos, ad copy, commercial/video scripts, brand bibles/language guides, pitches and presentations. Some projects involve as much big-picture conceptualizing and strategizing as actual writing, which keeps it really fun and interesting. There’s an emphasis on storytelling and audience experience with everything we do.

After graduating with a psych degree, I pursued careers in film and interior design. I had always been a good writer, but I had a very limited understanding of copywriting as a craft when I started. There was a huge learning curve that required a lot of practice, patience, and perseverance.

I spent a lot of time developing my skills, attending workshops, seminars, and courses, networking with peers, and learning from industry mentors. I got curious about everything related to my industry — web design, brand development, content marketing, graphic design, psychology, etc.

My unconventional path has positioned me as much more than a writer. I’m also a creative director and messaging strategist, so that’s something I bring to every project. Experience in other creative fields helped me understand how the words and visuals come together to tell a compelling story. Looking back, I can also now see how that seemingly disparate experience has given me an advantage over other writers. Considering where I started, I’m really proud of how far it’s all come.

I was told many times to pick a niche, and although I do have areas of focus (and ones I avoid), I think the decision to not be boxed into one genre has paid off in terms of my range and versatility. It taught me to find the core message in any medium or genre. It might’ve been easier to pick one industry, but the thought of writing about the same thing every day was never inspiring to me.

On the flip side, I certainly don’t say “yes” to everything. I’m much clearer now on the kinds of projects and clients that are a good fit on both ends, and I don’t stray from that. You have to be willing to say “no” and trust that something more aligned is waiting in the wings. Working on something that’s not aligned just for the money can suck you dry and end up costing more in the long run. I tend to attract clients who are purpose-driven or disruptive in a positive way.

With each project, there’s a new story to tell. I take pride in diving deep into who the client is, what makes them unique, who their target audience is, and what will make them sit up and take notice. I love being a detective, playing in these different worlds, and discovering new things.

I sacrificed a lot to start over again. I had to overcome so much doubt and insecurity about my unorthodox path, but I’m so proud that I stuck it out and that I’m now in a place where the work finds me. It was never a safe or comfortable choice, particularly when everyone around me was already far along in their careers, but I craved that creative freedom and independence, and I guess that was the priority for me. I now have this very high-level skill that I use to help others bring their gifts to the world.

I think the skill you need most to be a good copywriter is empathy. Helping people find the words to express themselves and their work can be a very intimate and delicate process. It’s less about being eloquent or writing something grammatically correct and more about understanding your audience so you can create a connection. It’s all about envisioning what ‘s most likely to resonate and doing it in a way that feels authentic to the client’s vision and voice.

To help others achieve that, I’m creating a course about copywriting essentials so that business owners, brand reps, and budding copywriters can learn to communicate powerfully. Writing is so confronting for most people, and it stops them from getting out there (or doing so effectively). I want to demystify messaging so they’re confident sharing their gifts with the world. When you’re proud of your brand messaging, you’re more confident in sales conversations and more motivated to take bold action. I plan to simplify the practices that took me 10 years to discover in a way that’s fun and engaging, so that participants walk away, not just with compelling copy they can use immediately, but with an arsenal of skills and the confidence to get results in their business.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Even though it’s been almost 4 years since I moved from NYC, I still feel like an LA rookie. The pandemic has limited activity for me, and I admittedly need to get out and explore a bit more. I live in South Redondo Beach, which is one of the “Beach Cities” of the South Bay section of LA. I live right by Riviera Village, which is the main street of restaurants, shops, and bars, so I usually take friends there for some sushi and sake at Flying Fin, tapas and tequila at Gabby James, or coastal American at Riviera House.

With close proximity to Palos Verdes, I would highly recommend any of the local hikes in the area. Driving up Palos Verdes Drive West takes you along the coast for insanely beautiful views around every corner. I recently took a friend to The Yellow Vase cafe in the Malaga Cove shopping center. It’s a quaint little French cafe with outdoor seating surrounded by a beautiful garden. If you keep driving west, you can stop off at the scenic overlooks or continue on to Terranea Resort, where they have a gorgeous outdoor patio overlooking the Pacific, several high-end restaurants, and a renowned spa. You can also just park, walk around, and take in the extraordinary views. They also have a hiking path that leads down to the beach.

If I’m meeting up with friends who are further north or flying into LAX, The Point in El Segundo is a beautiful and convenient outdoor mall with amazing food options and a lot of outdoor seating. For those with kids, it also has a mini playground and faux-grass area that’s perfect for parents to chill while the kids run around in safe view.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Firstly, shoutout to my mom, Irene. She’s a warrior who raised me and my two sisters as a single mother. My dad was always present after they divorced, but he often struggled with his mental health, so she became the rock. With no college education, she built a career for herself on sheer grit and determination. Her work ethic is unparalleled. She always encouraged my talents, and when I left the film industry to start over in this new career path that I knew nothing about at 31, she took me in and gave me the time and space to find my way again.

I also credit my best friends, Nikki Ostrower (NAO Wellness) and Mollie McGlocklin (Sleep Is A Skill) — two powerhouse entrepreneurs and biohackers who have established themselves as forces in their respective industries. These two women have been the source of limitless inspiration and support. When I was stuck overthinking my initial launch, Nikki convinced me to just get my website up. It was a critical first step in legitimizing my business and taking myself seriously. She later became one of my biggest clients and referral sources! She inspires me to just jump in and adjust course later, which is NOT my natural way of being. She’s also been my nutrition guru. I continue to be impressed by her passion and her ability to make sh*t happen. Mollie is a pioneer who is taking the sleep space by storm. She has introduced me to countless work and life hacks that have infinitely improved the way I operate in my everyday life. She’s also intro’d me to entrepreneurial groups that have helped me stay engaged and connected. Both of these women have been incredible examples and resources. For every challenge I’ve faced, they’ve had an arsenal of proposed solutions and encouragement. I can’t say enough about how critical it is to surround yourself with people who are doing the growth-minded work (personally and professionally), are genuinely supportive, and who are smarter than you!

Website: www.word-ology.com

Instagram: @_sabrinacohen

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/cohensabrina/

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