If you’re looking for a job in marketing or advertising, you’ve probably considered the importance of being able to write compelling copy. However, did you know that there’s a lot more to being a good copywriter than just knowing how to write effective copy? There are four distinct skills that you need to learn before you can become a successful copywriter. Here’s a closer look at each of those skills, and why they’re essential for your professional career.
As a copywriter, you’ll be conducting extensive research from different angles to come up with compelling content for your clients to read. But, how do you go about doing your research? You’ll need to be able to identify key issues and questions in your industry, and then devise ways to answer them. For example, if you’re a fashion copywriter, you might want to consider exploring ways in which the way people view fashion has changed over the years, or the ways different demographics behave when it comes to fashion. It’s often beneficial to conduct interviews, either face-to-face or over the phone, with industry leaders and figureheads to ask questions about what they think, how they behave, and what would make them buy your products or services. You may also want to consider hiring a professional researcher to gain in-depth insights into your niche.
2. Creative Thinking
As a copywriter, you’ll need to think creatively to come up with unique ideas that will stick out to the reader. To do this, you’ll need to develop certain abilities, such as brainstorming and coming up with ideas, as well as the skill to refine these ideas into a form that’s compelling and memorable. To continue with the above example, if you’ve developed the ability to be creative and come up with ideas on fashion, you might want to consider pitching some of these ideas to a designer. Alternatively, you could contact a company that specializes in commissioned writing and pitch your idea as a brochure or ad campaign. Being able to come up with ideas and concepts is often easier said than done, especially if you’ve been in a rut of the same old writing tasks. To get inspired, consider what makes your industry special and unique, and then use this to your advantage.
3. Audience Analysis
In any marketplace, there are more than two sides involved—buyers and sellers—and the key to being the best at what you do is by understanding who you’re speaking to and what they want. To determine this, you’ll need to look into the psychology of your target audience to find out not only what they want but why they want it. You may also want to consider hiring a market research company to conduct an audience analysis, which will help you understand your customer’s needs and how you can better serve them. Once you have this information, you’ll know exactly what marketing and advertising strategy to use to get them to purchase your products or services. You can also use this data to determine which platforms to use (e.g., social media) and which tactics (e.g., ads, giveaways) to deploy.
Whether you come up with the ideas or not, you’ll still need to be able to edit what you’ve written. If you’re unable to edit your work diligently and thoroughly, then it’s a good chance that the work will not be memorable, and could even be considered poor. To prove my point, let’s look at a few examples of poorly edited content. To begin with, take a look at this Amazon review, which was edited on a mobile device. As you can see, the reviewer’s comments were not edited, which results in a lot of spelling and grammatical errors throughout the text. Even the title of the review, which is usually the easiest part to edit, is poorly edited. In order to prove my point, let’s now take a look at an example of a well-edited piece of content.
To continue with the above example, take a look at this Forbes article. As you can see, a lot of detail has gone into making this content really pop. From the way the copy is laid out and the images used throughout, to the author’s personal touches, everything has been done to make this article standout. If you’re looking to improve your editing skills, then consider taking a class or reading some articles on online journalism, as it’s all about taking a step back and using your resources—time and technology—to their full potential.
Being a good copywriter is not easy, especially if you want to stand out among the masses of mediocre writers. However, with the right skillset and some education, you’ll be able to write effective content that will ensure you stand out from the crowd.