What does a copywriter do?


You know what it’s like, when you’re in those situations where you meet someone new and you get asked that question, “So, what do you do?”. If you have a conventional job, you’re lucky. Everyone knows what a photographer or a plumber or a sales assistant does. But when I tell people I’m a copywriter, 9 times out of 10 I’m met with blank stares and polite nods. “Oh,” they say. “that’s nice.”

In truth, I’m not even sure my husband understands what it is that I do! When I’m asked about my job, I’ve got into that awful habit of trying to over-explain in an effort to quell the awkward feelings that arise when I tell people that I’m a copywriter. I’ll say things like “I write content for websites”, or “I write blogs and website text for businesses.”

That doesn’t explain it though, really. There’s so much more to it than that – and I feel that I’m selling myself short. That’s the reason I’m writing this article – I wanted to at least have somewhere I can direct people so that they can at least understand my job a little bit.

What is copy?

Let’s start with the jargon. ‘Copy’ simply means written words. When we refer to the words that we write for business or sales purposes, it’s commonly just called…copy. Hence the term ‘copy-writer’.

Another confusion I come across is the difference between ‘copy’ and ‘content’. While the two are often used interchangeably, strictly ‘copy’ is text written in order to sell, and ‘content’ means writing for online mediums – usually for audience growth – online. That can mean things like blogs, social media etc.

What does a copywriter do?

You can ask 20 copywriters to explain what they do, and most likely you’ll get 20 different answers! The easy answer is that copywriters write text for businesses. But that can mean a hundred different things.

A copywriter’s job is to write engaging copy for a broad range of marketing materials, including:

·        Web pages

·        Blogs

·        Emails

·        Social Media Posts

·        Newsletters

·        eBooks

While all copywriters write content, content writers generally don’t write copy. The majority of my focus, for example, tends to be mainly content. I prefer to write pieces that allow readers to take value and learn from what I’m saying,  but while I do occasionally write more sales-led pieces, I enjoy the process less. Yet many copywriters are really good at these aspects, and so prefer to work on those.

When you’re thinking about hiring a copywriter, that might be something to think about. Do you want someone to write copy, or content?

What can a copywriter do for your business?

Every business, regardless of size or industry, requires copy to be written. For your website, social media posts, brochures, blog posts, emails, newsletters…the list goes on. Without those things, you’re going to find it very hard to advertise your products and services, and get the word out in order to grow.

Good copy takes a lot of time and effort, and while many business owners think they’re willing to do the job themselves, in reality writing often gets pushed aside for more urgent tasks, and so don’t end up getting done at all.

Hiring a copywriter to write your copy and content for you means that all of those things actually get done! While you’re busy running your business, your blog posts are being written and published, social media posts are being strategically placed on your feed to promote them (and your products and services), your website is consistently refreshed when it’s needed, and your newsletters and emails are sent on time. In other words, your copywriter is working in the background, helping to pull potential customers into your online world.

What I can do as a copywriter for your business

As a freelance copywriter who specialises in writing content for creative businesses, my core services are:

Blogging – Search engines favour websites that regularly update their content, and the most effective way to do that is to publish regular blog posts. The more fresh content that you can put on your website, the better – I’d recommend weekly posts, but even one post per month is better than nothing, as long as it’s consistent.

Website copywriting – So many businesses spend money on having a gorgeous new website designed, and then either try to write the copy on their own, or get the designer to do it (usually badly) and then neglect to update it for months, sometimes eve years! If your website could do with a refresh, or you’ve just got a new one and need someone to write the copy for it, I can definitely help with that!