What Does a Copywriter Do?

What Does a Copywriter Do?

The term copywriter has grown out of the advertising industry. With the digital age, it has come to mean all of the writing that is produced by an individual that promotes a company brand and the value of its products or services. It involves persuading consumers that they need what a company is offering.

This is a Broad Definition

In reality, a copywriter’s job is multi-faceted and involves research and writing for a variety of very specific online channels.

  • Website content
  • Social media profiles and posts
  • Blog posts
  • Product descriptions
  • Email marketing content
  • Newsletters
  • Long-form content (e.g., white papers, e-books, case studies)
  • Direct advertising

Each of these types of copywriting requires a different approach, and the expert copywriter has mastered them all. Above all, the copywriter must be creative and able to “connect” with others through their words. Other specific skills include:

  • Command of their native language – grammar, composition, spelling, punctuation, etc.
  • Research – ability to find the research that will support their written pieces, that identifies consumer demographics, that tracks target audience purchasing behaviors, that follows the competition, and more
  • Ability to weave stories (or collect them from customers) that verify the value of products or services being offered and publish them on appropriate channels
  • Empathy. The ability to “see” a brand from the consumer’s standpoint and to use that in content creation
  • Ability to match content style and tone with a brand’s voice
  • Ability to create visual and video content when called for
  • Listening skills – commitment to listening to clients and consumers alike, in order to fashion the content that both find valuable

Obviously, a copywriter must “wear many hats” in the course of their work. Great copywriters are not just “born.” They become masters of their art and science over time.

Taking a Closer Look at Some Specific Types of Copywriting

  1. Website Content

    You have visited websites that are stunning and those that are complete “busts.” What is the difference? The stunning website has an amazing design, but it also has copy that is engaging, educational and even entertaining or inspirational.

    Website copy focuses on products or services, of course, but it also addresses their value to target audiences – how it will provide solutions to their needs and wants. 

    Website copy may include creative and compelling product descriptions.

    Website copy may include videos with great scripts.

  2. Social Media Content

    The goal for social media content is to grow a following, to present a brand in creative in compelling ways, and to motivate viewers to share that content with their tribes. Here is where great storytelling can come into play; here is where a brand can become playful and entertaining. And here is where content can drive viewers to links back to a website page or a blog article.

    Blog Content/SEO

    Blogs serve a variety of purposes. One of the key purposes is search engine optimization. Blog content writers need to stay current with Google algorithms and how content is indexed and ranked. They then need to create that unique and compelling content that will move their clients to top rankings. This requires research, carefully placed most popular keywords, and text/visuals that have attracted many readers and followers, motivating shares, discussions, and such. The more popular a blog post becomes, the more Google pays attention. 

  3. Email Campaigns

    These are unique content initiatives. While much of an email campaign is automated, someone still has to craft the subject lines and the copy that accompanies them. Each email must have a single purpose and a call to action that will motivate readers to do something. This requires creative and engaging content, if recipients are to respond to the single call to action that should be in that email text.

  4. Long-Form Content

    This is a much more complex and lengthy type of content writing. Clients will often want e-books, case studies, white papers and such that they make available to their current and potential customers to download.  These pieces involve research, lots of data, and are of a more formal nature than other types of content. A content writer will have to “shift gears” to craft this type of content, and be much more like a provider of factual information, than a persuader.

    These are just five of the types of content a copywriter must produce. As you can see, the job is demanding and requires a variety of masterful writing.

Hats Off 

To those copywriters who have mastered their craft, we have to give a shout out. They are responsible for putting brands “on the map” and contributing to their revenue in so many ways.