A copywriter is expected to be skilled in coming up with great advertising ideas as well as putting them to paper in a very articulate and effective manner. A copywriter should also have a good grasp of layout and typography because visuals are also very important in advertising. Most advertising agencies require aspiring copywriters to have a solid background in the field, preferably working for at least three years in the business.
f you enjoy Public Relations copywriting and have contacts at newspapers and magazines, you can become a PR specialist. As a PR copywriter, you’re paid for your contacts – your ability to get publicity for your clients. Some copywriters add critiquing services to their copywriting services. You revise and revamp copy written by a business’s marketing staff. This can be lucrative, but you need diplomacy for this area.
As a copywriting consultant, you’re a strategist. You may develop branding concepts, offer publicity campaigns for businesses or individuals, or develop programs to achieve specific results such as generating leads. Currently Pay Per Click (PPC) copywriting consultants are doing well. As a PPC copywriting consultant, you manage PPC campaigns, researching keywords, writing landing pages, writing ads, and tracking the results. As a PPC copywriting consultant, your fees are usually a percentage of the advertising spend.
Note that some of these copywriting disciplines have parallel job titles/descriptions, and others don’t. For example, while ‘SEO copywriter’ is now a recognised job title, no one describes themselves as a ‘long-copy copywriter’. Also, be aware that some of these labels are flexible – while there are different strands within copywriting, the distinctions between them aren’t always so clear-cut, and people may use these terms in different ways.
The freelance copywriter writes in any medium directly for clients, usually operating as a sole trader or one-person company. Businesses and organisations need a broad range of things written: websites, brochures, case studies, product descriptions, user manuals, press releases, presentations, internal documents and more. While many will simply use internal resource to get the writing done, many turn to a freelance copywriter to help them out.
There are good and bad copywriting services, and it’s up to you to do the research on your own. The last thing you want to do is confuse content writing with copywriting and hire the wrong type of writer for the job.