Those who enjoy writing or have studied writing may be interested in applying their skills to a copywriting role. But what does a copywriter do exactly?
Basically, a copywriter’s job is to create persuasive and engaging copy for goods or services for readers to purchase.
A copywriter needs to have an excellent understanding of human behavior and know how to use language in a way that entices readers.
So how do you become a copywriter? Well, we have the answer below!
As well as the different types of copywriting roles available, we’ll also take a look at the skills needed to become a copywriter, so you can see if this creative and potentially lucrative career path is right for you.
What Is A Copywriter?
The role of a copywriter is to write copy about a particular product or service, and there are three main ways you can be employed as a copywriter.
Copywriters who work for an agency write copy for a wide range of clients, usually on a full-time basis.
Agency copywriting requires completing challenging creative projects and assisting clients in creating a brand identity.
Those who work in corporate copywriting tend to have more secure employment and will write copy only regarding the services and products of their employer.
As you will be writing copy for a limited range of products and services this is the less creative form of copywriting but it often has more job security and consistency.
As the name would suggest, freelance copywriting gives you the greatest amount of freedom when it comes to not only the subject of the copy, but time commitment too.
You can make your schedule as flexible as you like, and you can take on as many jobs as you like too.
Which Type Of Copywriting Is Better?
What type of copywriting is right for you will be decided by a few different factors, such as your financial circumstances, how you like to work, your skills, and what you would like to get out of your career.
While freelance writing is appealing due to its flexibility, it can also be inconsistent which is bound to have an impact on your finances.
If you do not yet have much of a social media presence or if you’re new to the world of copywriting, then building a good reputation will take some time, and once you’ve established a good reputation freelance copywriting will then become a viable source of income.
But if you would like job security with potential to advance in an organization, then being a copywriter for a corporation or agency may be for you.
What Skills Do You Need To Be A Copywriter?
No matter how you pursue a copywriting career there are some core skills you will need to progress in your career.
This may seem obvious, but you need to possess some writing skills to become a copywriter.
You don’t have to be an accomplished writer of course, but you need to have plenty of writing experience so clients can trust that you will write good copy for them.
To write effective copy you will need to do research on the product or service you’re writing about and know what audience you’re writing for.
A love for learning is an asset when pursuing a career as a copywriter.
This ties into writing skills, but to be a successful copywriter you need to be able to communicate clearly in your copy.
You also need to be able to listen attentively to what your client wants and interpret their vision in line with your creativity and their ambitions.
Becoming A Copywriter
While there is no one path to take to become a copywriter there are a few basic things you’ll need to become a successful copywriter.
You don’t need a degree to become a copywriter, but a degree in journalism, creative writing, marketing, or market research does put you at an advantage. But how do you get started on your copywriting journey?
Identify Your Niche And Establish Yourself
Identifying your niche means considering what you would like to write copy about and what is profitable. You should establish yourself for clients that need copy within your niche.
This helps you establish your credibility as a copywriter in a niche and will help to get you more work. For example, if you like to travel, you can focus on that niche, i.e. writing for travel blogs.
Create A Portfolio
Copywriting portfolios are usually referred to as ‘Minimum Viable Portfolios’ or MVPs, and are a sample of your work tailored towards a particular client.
These are usually between 200 and 400 words and are a clear representation of your writing and what you can offer to clients.
While this is a brief sample it should still be well-researched and efficient in showing off your writing skills and the kind of writing you can produce for potential clients.
Research The Market And Brand Yourself
Copywriters need to be able to attract and attain clients through persuasive writing skills and carefully curated social media. You also need to know some advertising basics in order to advertise yourself.
You need to be aware of marketing strategies, your target audience, your branding, and product placement in order to sell yourself as a copywriter and show off your skills to potential clients.
While copywriting isn’t a quick process and it’s not without its challenges, you don’t need to have a formal degree in copywriting to pursue it as a career.
You just need writing skills, a niche you’re interested in, determination, patience, and the knowledge of how to market yourself to become a copywriter.
Copywriting for an agency or a corporation provides you with a lot more job security, and might be a good place to start and gain experience before you decide to go freelance and have more job flexibility.
We hope our article has made the process of becoming a copywriter seem less daunting, and clarified the skills needed to pursue a career in this field.
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