Ask anyone what a copywriter is and 99% of people will look at you blankly or at best say it’s something to do with copyright.
Even some small businesses and independent professionals can get confused as to what a copywriter does or how they can help their business to grow.
So, it’s no surprise that when these same businesses struggle with their brand voice, website copy or sales message, they’re not sure where to get help.
In this post, I take an in-depth look at exactly what a copywriter is, what they’re not and most importantly, what they can do to help your business grow.
What is a copywriter?
A copywriter is a skilled professional who writes copy that persuades and sells. So, writing the messaging on sales letters, email funnels, adverts both online and in print, sales brochures, sales flyers and product descriptions, amongst others.
There’s often confusion when it comes to the difference between copywriting and content writing, so let’s clear that up. Content writers produce content to educate, inspire and entertain.
This includes blog posts, articles, e-books, etc. These forms of communication are designed to attract a certain audience, bring them to your website and turn them into a warm lead. Content writers don’t use the same strategies as copywriters as they’re not trying to sell outright, only to engage.
Even some top marketing companies can get mixed up when it comes to the difference between copywriting and content writing.
I found this somewhat misleading definition of a copywriter on a top marketing company’s website; “a copywriter is someone who writes for the internet (not true, as copywriters often write sales ads for print magazines, newspapers, billboards, leaflets, etc.) They create informative content for businesses that is designed to guide the reader’s own research – (sounds like they’re talking about blogs and articles here, which is content rather than copywriting.)“
The truth is that most copywriters also do content writing as part of their skill set. And, because they’re trained in writing strategic copy, they’re able to weave a strong message into your blog post so that your audience will sit up and take notice.
But, copywriting and content are two different types of writing. A blog post or article that is designed to entertain or inform the reader is easier to write than a piece of copy where you want the reader to buy from you.
Imagine someone handing out leaflets in a shopping mall and compare that to someone in the same mall trying to sell tickets for something. Which one has the easier job? Handing out leaflets, of course!
Why does your business need a copywriter?
A copywriter then, can do much more than write a great blog post. They can write your main business message in a way that resonates exactly with your target customers.
Not only that, they’ll do it in your brand voice. If you’re not sure what your brand voice is, they’ll help you with that, too.
Many businesses use the services of a professional copywriter to make sure their brand stands out in today’s crowded market. A sharp, persuasive piece of copy that squeezes the client’s emotional trigger and leads them to buy, is worth every penny of a copywriter’s fee.
From writing copy for a whole website down to a product description, a professional copywriter will make sure your copy is the best it can be. They will focus on the benefits your product or service bring to the client and use strategic words that will drive the sale.
Services a copywriter can provide for your business
So, what are some of the services a copywriter can provide for your business. Here’s a list but it’s by no means exhaustive.
Online services include:
- Website copy
- Email funnels
- Opt-in/lead magnets such as e-books, reports, checklist
- Sales copy
- Banner ads
- Blog posts and articles
- Facebook ads
- Product descriptions
- Social media posts
Print and other services include:
- Newspaper and magazine ads
- Direct mail
- Sales Letters
- Press Releases
- Product descriptions
You can see they cover many different areas both online and in print. Some of the services cross over, such as product descriptions which may be online or in a physical catalogue.
What types of business need the services of a copywriter?
It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that practically anyone who owns a business these days would benefit from the services of a copywriter.
Certainly any business with a website could use their services. But, what about the little bricks and mortar store or service provider in the high street? What use would they have for a copywriter?
Surprisingly, they may have an even greater need to use one. Think of this way, if they don’t have a website, how do they let people know about their products or services?
Apart from footfall, they can do several things. Advertise in the local newspaper, distribute leaflets or make a sign for their shop window or sandwich board outside.
All of these forms of communication need targeted copy that potential customers will instantly connect with. An advert in a local newspaper has a very limited timeframe to make an impact and get customers through the door. So, it has to be right first time. And, a copywriter will be able to work with the business to make sure it does hit the mark.
Do you need to hire a copywriter to take your business to the next level?
The answer to that question is, yes! But don’t just take my word for it. Check out this blog post from Hubspot that lists 14 examples from business with incredible copywriters.
Saatchi and Saatchi ad agency are another example at the highest level of what great copy can do for your business. Charles Saatchi, one of the original founders, started life as a copywriter in New York City.
The advertising agency went on to work on high profile ad campaigns for Brutus Jeans, Cunard, Dunlop and Nestlé. Their copywriting and design took these brands to a level most businesses can only dream of.
If you’d like to find out more about how I can help your business by:
- Getting clear on brand messaging and voice
- Creating copy for your website that feels like an exclusive invitation for your clients
- Ending the struggle of hit and miss copy