Close-up of a typewriter

What is Copywriting?

Copywriting as a profession is the act of writing copy for a company’s advertising or marketing purposes. Copywriting is not intended to simply inform the consumer; writing copy is an art of persuasion. Essentially, copywriters try to persuade consumers to buy a product or service, or they write copy to change beliefs. Most copywriters are employed by companies as a part of a marketing taskforce or department. However, many copywriters also work as freelancers on their own schedules.

Copywriters may be involved in a variety of writing activities used to market a product. Examples include direct mail advertisements, commercials, web page content, jingle lyrics, press releases, white papers, sale letters, billboards, brochures, postcards, and other direct marketing materials. Since the creation of the internet, however, the scope of copywriting has changed and grown. With the prominence of search engines like Google, many companies have gotten into Search Engine Optimization (SEO), which has increased the demand for copywriters.

Many people think that copywriting is an easy profession and a way to make quick money. This isn’t actually the case. Writing copy requires strong writing skills, a creative mind, and a quick work ethic. Although shows like “Mad Men” tend to glorify the process of copywriting, most copywriters these days have to write a lot of content quickly and meet a number of deadlines. This requires exceptional grammar skills and eloquence alongside excellent organization and time management skills.

Writing copy also means having an understanding of the marketing strategy of the company and a solid knowledge of the intended audience. Remember, writing copy is not just for the sake of information; writing copy is about persuading a consumer.

If you’re considering becoming a copywriter, you should consider your education. First, consider getting a degree in technical writing, marketing, or English. These majors can help you sell yourself as an excellent writer. Additionally, a degree in marketing will also help you sell your interest in being part of a bigger marketing team.

Don’t just decide to become a copywriter because you enjoy writing. Keep in mind that copywriting is more than just writing. Copywriting is not creative writing. You’re not writing from your own perspective, you’re writing from the company’s. The best copywriters are those that are interested in both writing and marketing as a profession. If you have both of those interests, copywriting may be the field for you!

Last Updated: July 17, 2017