Just about everyone has heard the term “copywriter,” but most people do not truly understand what a copywriter is and what the job entails. The information below gives a brief overview of everything you have always wanted to know about copywriting.
What is Copywriting?
Before you can understand what a copywriter does, it is important to know what copywriting is. At its most basic level, copywriting is the process of writing materials that are promotional in nature. Whenever you see words written on a brochure, website, advertisements, catalog or anything similar, you are seeing the work of a copywriter.
What is the Difference Between a Copywriter and Another Type of Writer?
One of the most important goals of a copywriter is to get a reader to take action. That goal is what makes a copywriter different from other types of writers. The type of action a copywriter prompts is different in every piece that is written. It can be to opt-in to something, make a purchase, engage with a product or service or connect with a company, among other common goals.
Qualification for Becoming a Copywriter
One of the most wonderful aspects of becoming a copywriter is that there are no prerequisite qualifications you must meet to become one. The demographic makeup of copywriters is broad and includes college graduates, high school graduates and everyone in between. There is also a wide age range from those who are only 18-years-old to retirees who are looking to make a little extra money. All you need is a desire to work, a computer and an internet connection. You can learn everything else you need as you progress. Despite there being no official qualifications for becoming a copywriter, most employers will be interested in writers who have a background in writing and have a wide range of knowledge in specific subjects. Those looking to break into copywriting should also consider putting together a portfolio that highlights their writing skills.
Primary Skills a Copywriter Needs
A copywriter does not have to have a particular skill set at the onset of his or her career. There are certain skills that will need to be developed to be successful as a versatile copywriter. These include:
- Blogging and writing web-based content.
- Doing background research and providing citations.
- Having a basic knowledge of SEO and keyword usage.
- Having a basic knowledge of HTML.
- Knowing the basics of design.
- Knowing email marketing.
- Understanding how to use social media.
Beyond the basic skills, there are also some secondary skills that will help a copywriter be successful and secure a job or gain new clients:
- Creativity so you can develop ideas and create original content around given themes.
- The determination to get a job done, no matter how long it takes.
- The ability to write persuasively to convince readers to take an action.
- Strong perception for recognizing relevant and current topics.
- The ability to write well, in the right tone, with the right feeling while using proper grammar and mechanics.
Every day for a copywriter is vastly different. However, perhaps the best way to understand exactly what a copywriter does is to go through a typical workday.
- Have a routine – Whether you are working for yourself or a company, sticking to a routine is integral for success. In the morning, take a shower, make your coffee or do whatever else you need to before you get going for the day. If you work in an office, establish an office routine and stick to it every day.
- Research, lots of research – As a copywriter, you will spend a good portion of every day on research. Chances are, you will not be an expert on every topic that gets assigned to you. So, you will need to do a sufficient amount of research before you can start writing. If you do not, you will quickly be exposed, and your chances of getting more assignments will quickly fade away.
- Take time for lunch – It can be easy to work through lunch, especially if you are trying to hit a deadline. But, stopping to nourish your body is essential to getting your job done well. Once your body is satisfied, you will be able to hit the ground running and crank out the assignments you need to get done.
- The Business end – If you work for yourself, you will need to spend part of every day on the administrative portion of your job. Between invoicing clients, keeping track of your expenses and processing payments, there is plenty to keep you busy before the end of the day. You can eliminate this step if you work for a company that takes care of these duties for you.
If you are interested in getting started as a copywriter, check out Copywriter Today. We’ll help you get going on the right track.