Copywriting is another term that gets you a blank stare or an “Oh like writing grants and stuff,” response. My usual response when I encounter this situation is to smile and say, “Not really, I write blogs, case studies, web content etc.” I used to mention white papers and that would elicit more weird looks, so I scrapped that. If you Google the definition of copywriting you will find different variations of the same answer. My favorite is from www.brafton.com, “Marketing Copywriting is all of the written assets your business uses to develop awareness, increase brand loyalty, encourage action, and keep clients coming back for more.” Written marketing assets include:
- Blog Posts: These range from fun informal pieces to attract, entertain and inform to the very technical for purely informational purposes. Blogs range from 200-1500 words.
- Emails: The purpose of email campaigns is to pique interest, raise awareness and prompt action. They should be short and enticing.
- White Papers: White papers are objective, informative, educational documents that explain the origins of a problem, and how it can be solved. The solution often, but not always, include the product or service the client sells. White papers build your credibility as a thought leader. They range from 1,500 to 2,500 words.
- Case studies: Detailed analysis of how a company helps its customer to solve a problem. They normally have a specific structure and discuss the client’s pain points/challenges, solutions, and results or benefits gained from the solution.
- Social media posts: Facebook and LinkedIn updates, and tweets.
- Website Content: This can be visual, or aural content that visitors encounter/experience on websites. It may include text, images, sounds, videos, and animations.
- Infographics: Visuals used to impart complex information/data in an easily understood format. The term “a picture is worth a thousand words” is an apt description of an infographic.
- eBooks: Books available in digital form, consisting of text, images, or both, that can be read on computers, tablets, mobile phones, and other electronic devices.
To be a successful copywriter you should always:
- Understand the client’s requirements and have a clear goal in mind.
- Recognize the client’s voice and, ALWAYS write in the client’s voice.
- Establish the type of content required and work within the established framework of that format i.e. recognize SEO best practices, character limits etc.
- Know your audience and build a connection with them.
- Keep your audience engaged and entertained with useful and memorable marketing copy.
- Have a clear and simple call to action.
So, what is a copywriter? A person who writes effective marketing material for your audience in your voice.