Whilst you may not think it, writers are at the forefront of a lot of the marketing you see day to day. The content we consume, and the way businesses communicate with their customers, would not be possible without copywriters. Copywriting is a skill that not everyone possesses, it combines marketing knowledge with an understanding of written words, as well as an artistic flare.
It takes a lot to create readable, engaging, optimized, grammatically correct, factually sound, and unique pieces of content, we believe that if a business does not have an in-house copywriter, then they certainly should be outsourcing their copywriting. Here are the most important skills needed:
This one’s a bit of a duh, of course a copywriter needs writing skills. Writing skills consist of not only an understanding of spelling and grammar, but the ability to create engaging and coherent blogs, articles, and guides. Nobody wants a load of waffle in their marketing, so differentiation of sentences, punctuation, headings, lists, and metaphors is key. We love to write conversationally but this totally depends on your business’s tone of voice.
Attention to detail
This is a mega crucial factor. Copywriting is critiqued immensely. Content produced by copywriters is there for lots and lots of people to see, so spelling mistakes, changes in tense, and inconsistent formatting do not go unnoticed. Having an eye for the smallest details helps writers to maintain their brand’s tone of voice and make the reader’s experience a good one.
Copywriting is an art, so for a copywriter to do their job effectively they must have some creativity. It is bonkers what a bit of creative flare can add to a piece of writing, but creativity is what takes a boring, lengthy article into a clickable, readable piece of marketing.
Everything copywriters produce is there to communicate with an audience, so communication skills are key. Copywriters must convey points to readers in an authentic and expressive way on behalf of businesses. It is also important to note that copywriters do not simply create content and post it, it often goes through an editor, with input from a designer, and the client, so if communication is not amazing it can cause entire projects to fall.
Research is super important, even when researching topics that are familiar, facts must be checked. Research can take a long time and if a copywriter does not have good research skills it can cause problems when writing for clients in specialized areas, such as finance, property etc. If writers use incorrect information, it can cause problems for clients.
The whole point of marketing is to create connections with potential customers to sell to them. When copywriting it is important to ask yourself, what problem is the reader facing? Why will someone want to read this? How do I want them to feel? How can I solve their problem? By truly feeling what the customer feels it is much easier to shape content around their needs. Empathy is also a key tool in humanising businesses leading to stronger brand loyalties.
SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) awareness
This is a super important one if you want your content to be seen. SEO is such a crucial tool in digital marketing, so copywriters really need to be familiar with how SEO works to seamlessly stitch keywords into the right bits of copy to help clients rank higher across the web, and social media.
UX is often lumped with web design, but it applies to all elements of marketing. Copywriters must consider how the user experiences their content in terms of readability. The line between a good readability score and a bad UX score is a fine one, if a piece of copy is too readable it may leave the reader feeling patronized.
Versatility and content marketing knowledge
Copywriting is a skill that not everyone has, and a key element of that skill is to be versatile. Copywriters must be able to remain versatile to produce diverse types of content, copy for different industries, brands, and products, having loads of streams of knowledge. Content marketing knowledge is also important as copywriters must be able to create content tailored to a specific audience, usually with the purpose of selling to them.
The key role of a copywriter is to use language to communicate a message to an audience. They must also be able to see their errors and be able to fine-tune a piece until it is polished to a publishable standard. Of course, spell-checking software can edit to an extent, but not in the same way that a copywriter can make pieces convey the desired message, in the right tone of voice with no spelling mistakes, grammatical errors, or inaccuracies.
Curiosity might have killed the cat, but it certainly never hurt a copywriter! Copywriting is rooted in curiosity, the curiosity to learn, to find the answers to questions and solutions to problems. For many writers, this is the motivation to investigate, research and write content to problem-solve for both brands, and their consumers.