What is Copywriting?
If you are like most people, you’ve probably wondered “What is copywriting exactly?”
Let’s say you have a way with words and want to leverage that into helping others.
Copywriting can be a fantastic career. It is one of the most critical elements in almost all forms of advertising and marketing. Copywriting is the process of writing persuasive words (known as copy) that inspire or motivate people to take a specific action. Plus, it’s essentially almost everywhere you look and listen!
As a copywriter, you are actively trying to get people to feel, think, and or respond to a specific topic or product.
What Does A Copywriter Do?
To put it simply a copywriter creates clear and compelling copy to sell products and or educate and engage consumers.
You want the audience to take action to what you’re presenting. This is done through writing pieces of content for blogs, email newsletters, press releases, product descriptions, social media posts, and so much more.
It’s important to note that a copywriter will understand and know their specific audience type to target and strategize their work accordingly.
What Does A Copywriter Create?
In copywriting, the writer must provide the words for a variety of assets. They can be contracted out to write business-to-business (B2B), companies selling goods and services to others, or direct to consumers (B2C). If we’re talking about the nitty-gritty, copywriting may involve these types of areas during their day-to-day workings:
- Blog posts
- Print ads (newspapers and magazines)
- Social media (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, etc.)
- Website copy
- Case studies
- PDF files
- White papers
- Billboards and posters
What Is the Difference Between Copywriting and Content Writing?
One question that is quite common regarding copywriting is how it is different from content writing. The two have some overlap, which can lead to confusion if you’re not aware, but both have a very different core objective.
Typically, a copywriter writes short-form pieces, and a content writer writes long-form.
Copywriters keep text brief to engage readers, while content writers often write more in-depth, explaining a process or topic. Keep in mind there is significant overlap in these positions.
In copywriting, the copywriter has one primary goal – to sell, whether it’s a product, an idea, or something else.
Whereas content writing is about educating, solving problems, helping engage and inspire existing and prospective customers. Copywriting is focused on the end goal, whereas content writing covers everything in-between.
Good copy, regardless of what and who it’s for, should always do the following:
- Persuade people and or businesses into acting
- Develop a brand voice or tell a story
- Achieve sales
Education, Training & Certification
While formal education isn’t typically necessary or a requirement for copywriting, to become a copywriter many professionals do earn a bachelor’s degree or college diploma. Majors can include but are not limited to:
- Marketing (and or advertising)
No licenses or certifications are required either, but it helps to gather experience and previous work samples.
For more specialized industries, be it medically based or technological, companies may seek copywriters with a background in that specific field in addition to proven copywriting skills.
When it comes to setting yourself apart from other copywriters it’s essential to have a portfolio. Have a list of references, recommendations, or past work.
This can be listed on a website or a one-page pdf, sort of like a cover letter that shows businesses and brands, and your work history and accomplishments. If you’re still struggling to acquire clients or build out your portfolio, an internship is great at giving you more experience and future references.
If you’re looking for a some additional copywriting training our team of copywriters are happy to teach you and your team!
What Skills Are Required To Be A Strong Writer?
Copywriting requires a range of skills to be successful in the role. The following examples highlight several important skills that copywriters need in order to be successful:
- Strong writing skills – spelling, punctuation and grammar
- Good communication and listening skills
- Familiarity with different content management systems
- A wide vocabulary
- An eye for detail
- Creative thinking
- Research and interviewing skills
- Understands basic knowledge of SEO (search engine optimization)
- Problem solving
- The willingness to adapt and know your audience
- Organizational skills
Types of Copywriting
There are many different examples of copywriting. In any area of expertise, you will want to familiarize yourself with the following. Here are just a few:
This type of copywriting is a combination of things ranging from your mission and vision statement, brand and core values, your brand story and any tag-lines. This copy establishes a clear brand identity and governs the creative and strategic direction of all marketing copy.
This is copywriting done for static pages that make up a website. This would include items on a homepage, about section, services, contact page, etc. The goal is to give an insightful and informative overview of the brand and its core products or services offered to new and returning visitors.
Social Media copywriting
Anything to do with social media where you are wanting visibility and ultimately to be seen. This is no different when copywriting for social media. The writing should be tailored to get in front of your followers and grab their attention as they’re busy scrolling away.
SEO copywriting is writing intended to rank a page or blog post higher in Google Search Results (SERPS) for a specific keyword phrase. This is done through compelling and valuable content that targets keywords so others will see it resulting in a purchase or action. That’s a crucial skill for any marketing person trying to grow a digital business.
Product copywriting is focused specifically on featuring your product. This will focus on product pages, feature announcements, and product descriptions, and amplify messaging to highlight these key areas.
Who Needs Copywriting?
Who hires copywriters? There are many different types of organizations that hire these professionals, which means there are many different types of copywriting jobs available. Some copywriters focus on one or two specific types, while others may write for a wide variety of different businesses.
- Marketing agencies
- Small & local businesses
- Online retailers
- Real estate agencies
- Web design companies
- Charities and nonprofits
- Solopreneurs and freelancers in other industries
- And many more!
The need for great copywriting is prevalent no matter the business type or niche because a fundamental part of running a business (regardless of the size) is driving a specific action from an audience.
Advertising, design, and marketing agencies are major players who hire copywriters. Some have large in-house copywriting teams and will also hire freelancers during peak periods, while others work exclusively with freelancers to write content. Long story short, everyone in business can benefit from hiring a good copywriter.
Where Do Copywriters Work?
There are three main ways to work as a copywriter. They are:
In-House (Corporate) Writer
As an in-house copywriter, you are employed by the company that is selling the specific product or service. You report to a delegate within the company and normally then have a 9am-5pm type roll. If you’re looking for steady work and job security, this type of role would be ideal.
Many companies don’t need a full time or even part time copywriter other than on a as-needed basis. With that, a marketing agency would be hired to create the specific content. An agency writer would be employed through the agency who would request the work to be created based on certain guidelines and criteria. Through agencies, professional copywriters would be serving a multitude of different clients. These types of roles are usually quite fast-paced, with quick turnaround times.
If you’re looking for more control, a sense of independence and don’t mind the ebbs and flows of self-employment, freelance work could be what you’re after. Unlike an agency, companies, brands, or individuals will hire a freelancer to create a single piece of work or hire them on-going to cover all their copywriting needs.
Oftentimes, copywriters who work independently will always have a wide range of clients (some may be more short term and others long term). In a freelance role, typically working hours are flexible and based on the freelancer’s schedule. They will also likely write content on a wide range of varied subjects. Another perk is they can commit to as many or as little jobs as they choose.
Are You Looking for Copywriting? We Can Help!
At the end of the day, copywriting is an essential part of digital marketing. It doesn’t need to be overly complicated or something to stress over.
Copywriting takes time, research, skill, and a deep understanding of a business’ needs and goals, but the benefit of having a good copywriter can set you apart from the rest.
As always though, if you need any help with your content marketing and your copywriting, we’re here to help!
Call us at 1-888-262-6687 or send us a message.