What does a freelance copywriter do?
Friday, March 6, 2020
Whilst you might feel the answer to this question is remarkably obvious, others will welcome a straightforward explanation. So, that’s exactly what I’m going to do in this post. I’ll illustrate the purpose of a freelance copywriter; what people like me actually do for you.
The problem with copy
In almost all companies, the responsibility for creating copy (words to be used within your communication) sits firmly within the marketing department (or the person responsible for this area).
Now, it’s very common to hire the services of website builders and designers. Even photographers and media buyers. Not all businesses would immediately consider hiring a copywriter.
Some would try and cobble together some copy that “would do”.
And that can be a poor decision.
If you want to make some progress (and I think all businesses do), you need to appreciate the potential value of your copy. Just like other aspects of your communication.
That’s why freelance copywriters exist, in many shapes and sizes.
What should copy do for your business?
Consider your copy as your written voice. It projects your business character and must connect with your audience. Alongside images, it often comes before any human interaction. For example, a prospective customer will read your website before picking up the phone to you.
It has a key role to play.
Your copy must engage, inform and even motivate. That’s a lot to achieve from a handful of words.
Enter the freelance copywriter
Let’s first dispel a common myth. Copywriters don’t just write. Oh no. We do much more than that.
An experienced copywriter will first be able to help you better understand your target audience. You need to know what makes them tick. Their frustrations and needs. How they decide on a purchase.
Good copywriters can then help you clarify the value your business delivers. Not just your products and services, but the value your target audience seeks.
Next, we help you become clear on your messaging. If you’re confused about what you want to say, your target audience has no hope!
And then…eventually…we plan and write the copy you need; always drawing on your core business values and with your customers in mind.
You might think you’re ready for a copywriter to simply write. That can be the case. But they’re going to ask you a lot of questions and if you don’t have the answers, some initial delving would reap huge rewards.
What do copywriters write?
Well, that depends entirely on the copywriter.
Some will say “anything” whilst others will be more specific. Even to the extent of having a very defined niche. Long-form articles for the technology industry, for example, or e-commerce email copy for the clothing industry.
And there are many that sit in between these two extremes.
Anything that helps you communicate to your target audience can be written by a copywriter. Website copy, case studies, emails, articles, adverts, tenders and presentations are all typical examples.
And here’s something to remember: less words won’t always mean less time. If you’re asking for advert copy or some catchy straplines, it might take more time (and thought) than an 800-word blog.
Who do we write for?
Again, specialisms exist and it’s worth asking the question of your prospective copywriter.
I, for one, focus mainly on business to business (B2B) companies. Though I do enjoy a bit of B2C from time to time.
Some copywriters work for marketing and design agencies. Or they might get involved with public sector projects.
I hope you’re clear on what a freelance copywriter does now. Just like great designers and photographers, a copywriter who’s in tune with your business can be a smart resource to have up your sleeve.
Want to see if we’re a good fit? Please just get in touch.