We live in a world where marketing influences many of our actions on a daily basis. Brands tell us to aspire to a certain look, or way of life, and we often abidingly step in line and oblige them. Of course, it doesn’t always work. It really comes down how targeted a brand is and how well they know those who they appeal to.
Some of what works is more esoteric. The bitten apple we now associate with iPads and MacBooks evokes a will to taste the forbidden – à la Eve (what this has to do with a tech company is anyone’s guess, really). In this way, graphics have been redefined. So, we can no longer look at McDonald’s Golden Arches without thinking of salty fast food.
Words too have been given the same treatment as logos being thrust in front of us. When a brand begins its journey the words it uses can be crucial to how you manifest your vision. The most obvious starting point is that you need to believe what you say. You can’t take anyone on a journey if you’re not already on it yourself.
It isn’t an easy narrative to tell and consistency is everything – you’re going to need a copywriter who has spent much of their life in those inky symbols, which could be the difference between a brand drawing in droves, or being left out alone in the cold.
Cometh The Project, Cometh The Writer
As we take our first steps into the promise of 2023, it’s clear that investment in content marketing will be as crucial as ever. The keys to cleverly placed words will be more valuable – a way to improve your Google Ad quality score, ROI and search ranking. The right copywriter won’t just depend on rates (or at least it shouldn’t). Outside the importance of grammar and spelling, when it comes to attracting customers, you’ll need a writer who seems to have been custom-built for your project.
Let’s take a closer look at exactly how to do that.
Agency Or Individual?
One of the first questions you’ll be presented with is whether you want to go with an agency, or an individual. Agencies can take away some of the heavy lifting. You can usually rest assured they’ve selected strong copywriters and know the projects they’re more suited for. Higher rates for solo writers can sometimes seemingly be plucked from the ether (on average these range between £100-500 a day). So, if you’re looking for an individual you can face the ordeal of having to test and onboard multiple solo writers, without really knowing how their abilities relate to your needs. Manage everything in-house and you’ll have to do all that yourself.
It’s also important to remember that you won’t know whether a writer is reliable upfront. Relationships can take months, even years, to form and lots of copywriters work remotely, so you will struggle to help manage their time in absentia. That isn’t to say they’re an untrustworthy bunch. Most professional copywriters are very hardworking and have already grafted through the difficult early stages of establishing themselves as someone businesses should reach out to. Good agencies are likely to have specialist writers though – especially if their client base spans various sectors – or, writers who are able to adapt to the diverse needs of multiple brands. Take into account that they might also offer editorial assistance and project management as well.
This specialist factor is perhaps most important to consider. Let’s say you need a search manager, skilled at keyword research, strategy and on-page SEO. Many agencies will have someone employed in that specific role. However, individual copywriters might be more willing to spend time on brand guidelines, research and strategic input – if it’s part of establishing a longer term working relationship. That input might be vital when it comes to working out your tone of voice and content plan. It depends whether you want to offload your copywriting to an agency, or maybe work closely with an individual over a longer period of time.
How Will I Know When I Find The Right One?
It’s important to have goals outlined early on. That way a copywriter will also be able to identify if they are right for the job, or even able to assist you. This is a results-oriented partnership – a great writer might not be enough if you specifically want content to drive a course of action. So, ask yourself: Do you want to drive more traffic to your website? Convert visitors into email subscribers? Edit and simplify existing copy?
Whatever your needs are, it will help a copywriter to know them early on if you want to achieve results together. It might help to know the different types of skills sets out there (whether it’s SEO or email marketing) when it comes to hiring as well:
SEO Copywriters: Their speciality is search engine optimisation. SEO-oriented copy might be a little more disjointed to read, but it uses keywords to hook search engines, like Google. These are more strategic thinkers, eagle-eyed with minds for what phrases will be most effective and great at setting up the search terms for your Google Ads.
Creative Copywriters: These are your more artistic option, often found within advertising agencies, hammering out concise taglines and jingles. They’re a very effective choice for anything eye-catching: landing pages, ad copy, headlines, email taglines and research-based articles. Their main goal is to bring in business and improve engagement.
Technical Copywriters: If you want copy that’s more dense and specific, you might want to hire a technical writer. These are a rarer species of copywriter often confined to medical, scientific and industrial fields. Financial and legal papers are often sent to them for scrutiny and translation. Think complex copy that’s only really relevant to a targeted audience.
Conversion Copywriters: Last up, we have those writers whose primary concern is precise copy that converts. All commercial writing has some selling inevitably tangled up in it. Conversion writers are more overtly focused on bringing in leads and revenue. You’ll hear them talk a lot about the ‘call to action’ – their writing doesn’t trail off into a creative dreamscape, but instead is directly focused on demographics and what it will take to turn the reader into a follower, subscriber or customer. They will help to popularise specific phrases and pinpoint selling opportunities with a sense of urgency.
Did this article help you in your process of finding your copywriter? Let us know in the comments section below…