What is a Copywriter?

Jill Conway


March 13, 2020 (Updated: May 4, 2023)

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In this article…


Creating valuable content is one of the best ways to promote your business and to establish yourself as an effective knowledge source. This is why it’s important to publish strong marketing material that captures your audience’s attention and best displays your business’s message.

You can do this by hiring a copywriter who knows how to create compelling content that keeps readers engaged and informed. Learn more about what a copywriter is, the type of content they regularly create, and how to hire quality copywriters.

What Is a Copywriter?

A copywriter creates promotional content for companies that help sell or market their products or services. Copywriters can work for a marketing firm or within a business’ marketing department. Some may also work independently as a freelancer. Copywriters work to make content that captures the readers’ attention, engages audiences, and drives readers to complete an action . This could be to read additional educational content, sign up for a demo, or purchase a product.

Common tasks and duties of a copywriter may regularly include:

  • Researching complex topics related to the product or service a company is selling
  • Writing relevant, engaging and informative content
  • Applying any edits to an article that a client or supervisor requests
  • Carefully proofreading work to ensure it’s free of grammatical or spelling errors
  • Interviewing external sources for additional information about complex subjects, if needed
  • Finding images to support the written pieces
  • Planning and strategizing content creation
  • Ensuring each piece of content meets SEO guidelines including using proper keywords, reaching the necessary word count, and making sure the copy has strong readability
  • Writing scripts for promotional marketing and advertising videos

Content Copywriters Regularly Create 

Depending on the type of company a copywriter works for, they are often responsible for creating a variety of content. They should direct their copy toward the target audience, capture the readers attention and provide value to whoever is reading the content. Here are a few examples of content copywriters may develop to market a business:

Blog Posts 

Blogs or articles are important pieces of content that help a business establish their industry knowledge. Copywriters do this by publishing well-researched blog posts that inform readers of a certain subject they’re searching for. Posting a significant amount of blog posts also increases the chances of potential customers finding your company as they search for information to solve their problems or enhance their knowledge of a subject.

Image via Flickr by Ivan Radic

Website Copy 

Each business’ website needs simple and understandable copy to help users navigate the website and learn more about the company and the services it provides. Copywriters typically create website copy for pages like the About Us, Services or Products, and Contact Us sections.

They also create additional landing pages for when the business is promoting more of their educational content or selling an offer for their product. This may require a landing page with a call to action (CTA) and form to draw the attention of prospects and encourage them to sign up.

White Papers 

These are informative pieces that educate readers on various topics related to a company’s industry. White papers are in-depth pieces that provide results to a certain problem or question and detail how they found those results. The length of white papers varies on the complexity of the subject or how in-depth the copywriter wrote the subject. This can range anywhere from three to 10 pages of informative content.

Case Studies 

A company may ask copywriters to create case studies when they’re hoping to inform prospects of successful results they provided to a company. The copywriter is usually responsible for gathering numbers and statistics to provide as proof of the company’s success.

The case study should explain how the client benefited from the company’s product or service to give the reader a better idea of how it can help their company as well. The copywriter does this by taking the results and explaining this success in a way that’s easy for the reader to understand.

Social Media Posts

Social media is what helps a company promote their services in an organic or, sometimes, paid way. A copywriter creates social media posts that engage users and encourages them to learn more about the company and product. Since many companies build several social media posts daily, a copywriter should know how to build unique posts that stand out from others. This is why a copywriter needs to be creative and aware of what the competition is posting.

Ad Copy 

Advertising copy is print or digital material that captures the attention of prospective buyers and invites them to learn more. Copywriters regularly collaborate with the marketing and graphic design teams to brainstorm creative advertising material and draft copy that complements the accompanying graphic.

Copywriters should know when and where to publish an advertisement and how to determine what audience they’re targeting. Copy for an ad is usually around five to 20 words, depending on the type of advertisement being created and where it’s being featured.

Email Campaigns 

An effective way to nurture and build relationships with prospective and current clients is through email campaigns. Copywriters create content that interests clients and makes them want to continue reading to enhance their knowledge or eventually purchase a product. Email campaigns are a great way to establish trust with consumers, nurture relationships with them, and keep them engaged in what your company is selling.

Sales Collateral

Sales collateral, like sell sheets, is a great way to describe what your business does in a quick and appealing way. Copywriters study and learn the benefits your company provides and input this information into sales collateral. Copywriters usually list the benefits in neat bullet points or simple sentences on each document.

Copywriters often create this material in digital or print form to make it easy for salespeople to email or hand out to potential clients in conferences or conventions.

Types of Copywriting 

You can hire copywriters depending on the types of copywriting services you need from them. Some copywriters specialize in a certain subject and can provide expert-level services for a specific form of copywriting. Others may hold various knowledge levels for a variety of copywriting types. Common types of copywriting include:

B2B Copywriting

This stands for business-to-business marketing. Copywriters who create B2B content specialize in marketing toward different businesses, rather than the consumer. Instead of explaining how a product may benefit the life of an individual person, B2B copywriting markets specifically to companies and explains how their product can enhance the business’ productivity or efficiency levels.

A B2B copywriter closely analyzes your industry’s competitors and the needs of consumers. They create buyer personas to determine market audiences and cater their content toward each target audience member. They also determine the type of content your audience is searching for and create copy that stands out from others.

B2C Copywriting 

B2C, or business to consumer copywriting, is content geared toward consumers. Copywriters build content that benefits the wellbeing or productivity of people directly rather than businesses. B2C copywriters should be aware of the wants and needs of consumers and understand how they differ from the needs of businesses.

B2C copywriters learn who your business is marketing to and build a content strategy based on this target audience. They create several buyer personas and learn what type of educational information each audience member is searching for to create unique content that drives awareness and conversions for the company they’re building content for.

SEO Copywriting 

When a search engine optimization (SEO) copywriter builds content, they focus on how they can reach the top of search engine results. This makes it more likely for prospective buyers to discover your business as they search for answers to their questions. They do this by finding keywords your target audience commonly searches for and crafting copy centered on these keywords.

The content should be easy to read, be an appropriate length, and feature keywords a set number of times throughout an article. This helps your business rank high in search results, making your company easier to find, which can increase your site traffic and overall awareness.

Direct Response Copywriting 

Direct response copywriting is building content that encourages and receives a certain action from your prospects. This type of content is engaging and includes a call to action that draws users in and makes them want to learn more about your product or purchase it. The content the copywriter creates should trigger a response from customers and encourage them to take action. This helps efficiently build your conversion rate from prospects to customers.

Web Content Copywriting 

Companies may hire copywriters to write primarily for websites. This can be blog posts, featured articles, press releases, and product pages. Web content copywriters are knowledgeable about telling the story of your company by showcasing your products and services. They also have experience with search engine optimization best practices to write copy that drives users to your website.

When creating website copy, writers should be well-informed of your services. They may use resources like subject matter experts and internet research to become an expert on the industry and your product. This helps them easily break down information about your company in a way that’s simple for your prospective and current customers to understand.

Technical Copywriter 

Many copywriters with strong knowledge of technology and software products specialize in technical copywriting, which allows them to write content that breaks down technology and its advancements in a way that’s simpler for B2B and B2C audiences to understand. They often take a technical subject and provide in-depth information about it to help the audience better realize how that product works.

Technical copywriters hold very strong research skills and experience as they must know many specific details about certain technological products. Many technical writers have professionally served as employees in the technology fields and use this background to write informative articles that prove they’re experts on these subjects.

Advertising Copywriter 

Also known as creative copywriters, advertising writers are experts at creating content that captures the attention of both readers and viewers. They do this through writing advertisements for both print and digital outlets, creating scripts for commercials, and writing jingles to appear in radio and television advertisements.

Many advertising copywriters use their creativity to write content that both informs readers and viewers of a company’s service and entertains them enough to make them want to learn more about the company’s products.

Public Relations Copywriter 

Public relations copywriters work with either marketing or public relations departments to provide statements or press releases that heighten a company’s image. They are highly knowledgeable of public relations best practices and can create copy that make a client look good to the public eye. Public relations copywriters also work to raise awareness of a client and their product. They also know how to apply damage control for a company when they receive negative feedback from customers.

Digital Copywriter 

When a copywriter works primarily for digital, they specialize in making content for specific outlets. This can include social media, advertisements featured on search engines, website copy like blogs or articles, and any other digital marketing material. Digital copywriters are highly knowledgeable of SEO tactics and know how to create content specifically for the web that is well-targeted to prospective audiences and drives web conversions.

How to Hire Quality Copywriters and Content Marketing Agencies

When it comes to creating strong content for your company, you should invest in hiring copywriters who deliver well-written and researched pieces. Below are steps to find and hire a quality copywriter:

1. Determine the Needs of Your Company

Before making a hiring decision, you should sit down with your team to determine what type of content your company needs. This could be advertising copy, marketing campaign content, blog posts, or white papers. If you aren’t sure where to begin, you can find copywriters or a content agency like CopyPress who specializes in strategizing content and analyzing your company. This helps determine what content you need to help boost your awareness and target the right audience.

2. Decide If You Want to Hire a Full Time or Freelance Copywriter

Next, you should decide how often you need a writer to work for your company. This typically depends on how much content you need. If your company hopes to write copy for several outlets and channels, you may want to consider hiring a full-time copywriter to create all this content.

If your company doesn’t require as much content or you aren’t sure you’ll have a steady workload to provide writers, you can consider hiring freelancers on a project-to-project basis. You can also work with a content marketing agency that can provide you with freelance writers when needed.

3. Build Your Budget for Copywriters

When you hire freelance writers to build your content, you should establish your budget to determine how much you can afford. If you’re looking for high-quality content created by copywriters with several years of experience, you should set a higher budget that properly reflects that.

Writers for certain specialties, like technical and medical writers, spend a lot of time researching and gaining knowledge on a subject to provide in-depth pieces. This usually means their rates are higher than most since more time, dedication, and knowledge goes into writing this type of copy.

Using a content marketing agency to hire freelancers is another way to save money. It also allows you to let them handle setting deadlines with freelancers and working with them directly. This is a great option if you have limited time to work directly with the writers.

4. Learn How to Use Content Management Software 

Once you start working with copywriters, you must track their work, communicate with them regularly and check their final articles for clarity and quality. The best way to do this is by using a marketing automation or content management system. If you’re working with an experienced copywriter, they may already have a platform in mind that they regularly use. If not, you should research some on your own to find one that fits the needs of your company.

As you sift through different programs, look for one that makes it easy to read through writers’ work. You should also find one that clearly states upcoming deadlines to keep both you and the writer on schedule. If you want them to post content directly to your website, you can also find a content management system that allows them to do this for you by directly posting straight to the site.

5. Brainstorm a Content Strategy

The final step once you hire a copywriter is developing your strategy. Outline all the content you need, the message you want to send, and the voice you’d like to speak in. This helps the writer better understand the audience you’re trying to reach and how they should write to them. They can develop a schedule for publishing each piece of content and create a style guide to help ensure they’re speaking to your audience correctly.

Having a content strategy helps you plan ahead, keep your writer on track, and ensure you’re publishing enough content to get your company’s voice heard to build your brand’s awareness.

Qualities of a Strong Copywriter

As you search for an effective copywriter, there are certain elements a writer should have that proves they can craft great content for you. Below are common characteristics of copywriters who can write valuable content:

Ability to Follow the Style Guide

You may prefer your content written a certain way to appeal to your audience. If your target demographic is women between the ages of 20 to 40, your tone may be more conversational. Some companies prefer their B2B content written in a more professional style. This is something you can decide either before or after you hire a copywriter or agency.

Once you develop your style guide or tone of voice document, a strong copywriter should know how to properly follow it and write content that fits the tone and message you want to communicate. Once they have written a few pieces for you, they should better understand how to follow your style guide, allowing you to spend less time editing and correcting their work.

Knowing the Audience and Outlets They’re Writing For

As copywriters continue creating content for you, they should stay well informed of your product, services, and industry. This means they should have strong research skills that allow them to stay up to date on current trends as they build content that continues to display your company as a thought leader in your industry.

In addition to this, copywriters should know who your audience is and what type of content they want to view. Each piece they create should reflect the interests of your audience and work to solve their problems. A copywriter should also know the outlet they’re creating content for and the style rules for each piece. For example, they should know how to write both entertaining social media posts and informative, data-driven white papers.

Staying Relevant and Remaining Informative

When copywriters are drafting your content, they should keep their material informative at all times. Their content should work to solve the problems your prospect or customer is facing to build trust with the reader. This is why strong copywriters make sure they are writing information that stays relevant to your brand’s message and doesn’t include unnecessary fluff that provides little to no value to the reader.

Finding the Best Copywriter for Your Business

Finding a strong copywriter or content marketing agency can be the missing piece your marketing strategy needs to target the proper audience and build awareness for your business. As you search for the ideal copywriter, find one that specializes in the type of content you’re searching for and who puts your business’ needs and strategies first.

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Jill Conway

CopyPress writer

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