Leena - Finnish copywriter

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I live in Helsinki, in a district called Katajanokka, which is a peaceful island near the centre of town. I enjoy nature, especially the seaside, but also the conveniences of a small, culturally active city. Over the years, I have lived in many countries: in the States when I was a kid, in Germany as a nanny, in Sweden while a student, and in Holland for work as a freelance copywriter in 2008–2011. At least for now, I love living in Helsinki and working here as a freelancer: it’s easy to get around for meetings since everything is so close, and there are many beautiful places where you can write and work on your own. If there’s anything I sometimes miss, it’s long summers. Winter isn’t my favourite time of the year. Then again, because of the winter, it feels so much better when a beautiful summer arrives. And one can always travel for more warm days if needed.

I have a BBA degree, in international affairs and marketing. For the first six years after completing my education, I worked in marketing, as a member of a Nordic or Baltic team.  When I was 30, I switched to advertising. An agency where I’d been a client asked me to do some work as a copywriter, and I’ve now been a copywriter for 12 years. The first six of those years were with well-known agencies in Finland.

For the last six years, I’ve been working as a freelancer with agencies such as Ivalo (among Finland’s top agencies) and Taivas or Norway’s Centerteam Reklamebyrä. Also, I’ve worked directly with clients of my own. My strongest skill as a copywriter is in conceptual creative planning for companies, products, and campaigns. But I love all other kinds of marketing-related writing just as much, transcreating included. For balance, I think it’s good to handle many kinds of assignments. In all this work, I count understanding the clients’ needs and taking a highly creative but still strategic approach as definite assets.

In my free time, I sing, write (poems, songs, and short stories), and exercise: I’m a published poet, with two books under my belt. At the moment, I’m more into songwriting, which sparked my enthusiasm after I started taking singing lessons two years ago. Let’s see where that passion takes me – if anywhere, since I have so much to learn. Exercising too has always been close to my heart. Nowadays, I focus mostly on yoga and, step by step, am getting more into meditation.

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Also, I love animals. I have a cat (who thinks she’s a dog) and have done some volunteer writing work for a Helsinki-based animal shelter. I would say that the animal shelter is my favorite client at the moment, since the results are so wonderful to see: a rescue cat getting a new home after you tell people its story – even though that good feeling doesn’t pay the bills. I see myself having more animals in the future. And a bigger house, so there will be room for all of them.