Friends (1)

Karen Spaeder

Freelance Article Writer & Copywriter

Location:Irvine, California, United States
2 Skills
Online portfolio:

Versatile and creative writer, editor, copywriter, social media marketer, and Web content and SEO specialist with 15 years’ experience

M.A. in English, Creative Writing Emphasis, May 2000
California State University, Fullerton

B.A. in English, *** Laude, December 1996
California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo
• Dean’s Honor List
• President of Sigma Tau Delta International English Honor Society
• Journalism Department Head Award for service to school newspaper

Certificate, Essentials of Online Marketing, January 2011
Online Marketing Institute

Certificate, Early Childhood Education, April 2004
Vanguard University of Southern California

Senior Copywriter/Copy Editor, Experian, Costa Mesa, CA, January 2009–present
Multichannel marketing campaigns: I work closely with marketing managers to execute campaigns and deliverables for their business units from concept to completion. With a focus on writing strong calls to action and clear, concise copy, I help our marketing managers to deliver powerful messages that engage their target audiences across both traditional and digital channels, including direct-mail pieces, product sheets, e-newsletters, brochures, advertisements, Web content, banner ads, emails, trade show graphics and SMS messages.

Identity reviews and copy editing: I help to maintain the highest quality standards of Experian’s print and digital materials by reviewing and editing documents for style, grammar, punctuation and brand identity. This process includes high-profile events with multiple deliverables such as Experian’s annual client-facing Vision conference, as well as the Sales Summit conference for Experian’s internal salespeople. As a part of the identity review team, I maintain careful attention to detail and juggle multiple deadlines, alongside my writing deadlines, and work closely with marketing managers, project managers and designers to ensure that I meet or exceed their deadline expectations.

Copywriter, Lakeshore Learning Materials, Carson, CA, December 2004–May 2008
Catalog, email and Web copywriting: I created compelling product descriptions for three annual mail-order catalogs and the company’s corresponding website. In addition, I was responsible for all Web home page campaigns and regular marketing emails to customers. One of my email campaigns resulted in a nearly 1 percent response rate and half a million dollars in sales.

Product creation: I assisted product developers in creating top-quality educational products for preschool and elementary classrooms. Responsibilities included copywriting of activity cards, student readers, test-prep materials and other products designed to help teachers, students and parents achieve their goals both in and out of the classroom.

Freelance Writer & Editor, August 2003–present
Broad writing and editing expertise: I work with clients in a variety of industries to write SEO articles, blogs, social media “tweets” and other posts, feature articles, ghost-written materials, press releases, Website content, e-newsletters, sales pages and promotional emails. I also provide proofreading, copy editing, book editing, and writer and editor mentoring services. In 2008, Entrepreneur Media contracted with me to provide mentoring and coaching to a new online editor. Additional clients include @Home In magazine,, authors Brad C. Wenneberg and Pamela Mitchell, eStrategies Inc. and various clients on the freelance writing website.

Executive Editor of and Managing Editor of Entrepreneur Magazine, Irvine, CA, October 1999–August 2003
Writer and copy editor supervision: I led a team of approximately 25 staff and freelance writers as well as a copy editing team. Under my supervision, these employees wrote and edited articles for the print and digital editions of Entrepreneur magazine. The role required weekly brainstorming sessions to generate and assign story ideas; close monitoring of industry trends; quality control on outgoing materials; and regular coaching and mentoring with writers and editors to help develop their skill sets.

Cross-promotional campaign design: I attracted thousands of new site visitors to through cross-promotions in the print edition of the magazine, persuasive email marketing campaigns and newsletters, personalized attention to reader questions and comments, design and implementation of hands-on user tools and services, and creation of new and evergreen content to assist small-business owners.

Budget control: I significantly decreased budget expenditures by bringing projects in-house, negotiating new contracts with writers, and transforming a low-performing smaller magazine into an online-only publication.

Small-business coaching: I assisted readers needing help with startup or business growth issues in an online “Ask the Expert” format as well as via one-on-one responses to questions.

Aggressive demonstration of management skills: After six months as a staff writer, I was promoted to managing editor. I simultaneously managed both website and magazine copy on tight deadlines.

Staff Writer, Entrepreneur Magazine, April 1999–October 1999
Creative brainstorming and compelling stories: I worked closely with assignment editors to create reader-friendly articles, on deadline.

Copy Editor, Entrepreneur Magazine, June 1997–April 1999
Eye for detail: I was promoted from editorial assistant to copy editor at Entrepreneur within three months of hire. My excellent command of English grammar and composition allowed me to catch and fix errors quickly as well as create captivating headlines, decks and photo captions.

Copy editor on top-selling business book: I edited copy for an edition of Start Your Own Business, a best-selling book of Entrepreneur Press.

Editorial Assistant, Entrepreneur Magazine, March 1997–June 1997
Attention to minutiae: I demonstrated my commitment to excellence by factchecking articles for accuracy as well as volunteering to copy-edit pieces and write magazine articles.

Founder & CEO, Rain Frog Apparel, Fullerton, CA, February 2007–December 2009
In February 2007, I created Rain Frog Apparel, a line of eco-friendly bamboo clothing. I started this company to help offset the effects of global warming and to create an avenue for philanthropy: As a member of 1% for the Planet, I donated a portion of sales to environmental groups. My experience as a business owner, writer and editor affords me broad knowledge of marketing, sales, copywriting, blog writing, Web content writing, social media and current trends.

Teacher, Pacific Preschool, Laguna Niguel, CA, August 2003–December 2004
Early childhood development: I assisted in the emotional, social, physical and cognitive development of children ages 3 to 5 through the implementation of hands-on learning experiences, language and math activities, music programs, and gross and fine motor activities.

Proficient in AP, Chicago and MLA style
Web content management
Word, Excel, Outlook
Internet Explorer, Safari, Firefox
Quark Xpress, Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Reader
Basic HTML

Advisory Committee, Fullerton College Journalism Department, June 2003–present
Instructor, Trainer and Black Belt, American Martial Arts Academy, Fullerton, CA
Level 1 Yoga Teacher Certification, YogaFit, November 2009
Skills (2) Rating
Article Writing