If you’re not familiar with the world of marketing, you might think that marketing professionals just do ‘marketing’. And while that’s a reasonable assumption to make, it’s completely false. Within ‘marketing’ there are dozens, if not hundreds of specialist areas, and marketing companies bring them all together under one roof to create a one-stop-shop for marketing solutions. One of those specialist areas is copywriting, and it’s one that doesn’t get as much credit as it deserves.
In fact, if you’re thinking *hhmm what’s a copywriter?*, relax, you’re not alone. It’s one of those industry job titles that gets used a lot, but can be difficult to put your finger on if your core job is not in marketing. Which is why today we’re going to look at what a copywriter does, and the role they play in the sales and marketing mix.
What is Copy?
It’s a really common mistake to assume that a copywriter deals with copyright law. Believe us, we hear it all the time! So before you understand what a copywriter does, you first need to understand what copy is. And since we love a good official definition, here’s what the Chartered Institute of Marketing define it as:
‘Copywriting is written content conveyed through online media and print materials. Copy content is primarily used for the purpose of advertising or marketing. This type of material written is often used to persuade a person or group as well as raise brand awareness.’
So if it forms part of your marketing, sales funnel or any external-facing materials, the words used in it are called copy.
So What’s a Copywriter?
Put very simply, a copywriter is someone who writes copy for a living. A common misconception is that they deal with copyright law, but sadly that is not true! Instead, it’s a copywriters job to make your company look good, attract the right kind of customers to your business, and persuade them to buy from you.
But just to confuse things a little, there are different types of copywriter out there. Some copywriters will specialise in long-form content, like web copy and blogs, while others will focus on writing taglines and product descriptions. Others might focus on ad copy (which is a very specific type of content), and some might be great at technical writing, proposals or reports. You will find copywriters who specialise based on industry, rather than content type, for example beauty copywriters, food and drink copywriters, environmental copywriters or legal writers.
Many larger companies with established internal marketing departments will hire a copywriter in-house, which means that writer will have an in-depth knowledge of that company, be involved in multiple areas, and only ever write on that subject. Most SMEs and even some bigger businesses prefer to hire a freelance copywriter instead. These copywriters will often run their own business, and will write for a number of different clients, including you.
What Exactly Does a Copywriter Do?
Well, part of a copywriter’s job is to create exactly what you’re reading now. It’s their job to create clear, compelling copy that can sell products, educate or engage customers. A good copywriter can flex their persuasive writing muscles on pretty much anything that uses words or language, but some of the main things a copywriter works on include:
- Web copy
- Blog posts
- Product descriptions
- Email newsletters
- White papers
- Social media posts
- Press Releases
- Case studies
- Industry reports
- Banner advertising
And much more besides. And while that might sound simple, there’s a lot more to it than just putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) and throwing some words together. Copywriters get into the DNA of the business they’re writing for so that they can really reflect the right voice, tone and style for you. So they spend a lot of time researching, brainstorming concepts, developing storyboards, conducting interviews and creating communications strategies, all so that the words they create for your business hit the right notes with the audience.
Copywriting and its Role in Sales and Marketing
With all that in mind, how does copywriting fit into your sales and marketing strategy? Copywriting is an important element to any marketing strategy because it drives profitability, earns a return on investment (ROI) and achieves your business goals by convincing your target customers that your product will solve their problem and offer them value at the same time.
Branding: Your brand is much more than your logo. It’s about how you communicate with your audience, how you make them feel, and the impression you leave. It’s also about how memorable you are, and how easy you are to recognise in a crowded marketplace. And throughout that, you need a consistent brand voice to speak with. A copywriter can make sure your writing and voice is consistent across all of your marketing materials.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO): A big part of successful digital marketing is being found online, which is why so many businesses invest in SEO. But good SEO is built on having lots of content on your website, containing the right keywords in the right places and sending all the right signals to Google that say, ‘recommend me!’. Copywriters are vital to being found online.
Speak to your audience: We all want our audiences to interact with us, so we can show them how our products and services can make a positive difference in their lives. The copy your businesses uses is critical here, because it needs to connect on a deep level with your audience, offer real value and inspire action.
Evoke emotion: Successful sales is all about hitting the right emotion at the right time. After all, we buy with our emotions, not with our brains. Good copywriting taps into the mind of your customer and evokes emotions within them, priming them to be in the right position to buy from you.
Increase conversion rates: If you have a customer who’s on the fence about buying from you, copywriting can be the nudge they need to commit. Many businesses use case studies, white papers and emails as a way of converting hesitant prospects. In e-commerce, it even has its own term— cart abandonment copy. If you’ve ever put something in your basket but then clicked away before buying, you’ll have got an email encouraging you to go back and purchase and persuading you with discounts and compelling copy.
So, why do you need a copywriter? Because every customer reads, listens to and watches content, which means you need quality copywriting to create it. The quality of your copy can make or break sales for you, as well as impact how easily you can be found online, and even what your reputation is in the market. When customers have so much choice in the marketplace, if your copywriting is lacking then there will be a competitor waiting to take advantage.
At Lion Spirit Media, and our sister brand, Roaring Content, we know how to stop adding to the noise and instead create a truly positive impact with your copywriting. If you have any questions about what a copywriter does, or how we can help you improve your copywriting, we would love to hear from you. Just get in touch with us here to book your free consultation.