How To Become A Copywriter in 2022

There are 2 ways to succeed in life. WAIT for the fortune to smile on you. Or create your fortunes. Ideally, I would suggest you create your fortunes, and one of the best ways to do this is to get the rare and highly lucrative skillset of copywriting. If you enjoy writing, learning to write a copy may be the best career move decision as you not only get to flex your creative muscles, work remotely, be highly sought after by business but easily earn 6 figures without formal training or even education.

How To Become A Copywriter

You probably read or heard good copywriters talking about how they get huge pays per copy and you want to explore this career path, here’s a step by step guide to help you transition smoothly into copywriting.

What Is A Copywriter?

It is easy to think  “copyright” is connected to “copywriter”. While copyright is a legal term used to describe and protect intellectual property, A copywriter plans, researches and creates written messaging (called copy)on behalf of a client. (maybe a  business or organisation) This copy is usually purposed to sell, provide information or advertise a product, service, brand or to elicit a response from users. A copywriter uses persuasive written content to achieve the above. Copywriters do not just only write, they also possess the skills of behavioural psychologists and salespeople. The strength of copywriters lies in good communication and keeping the client interested enough to take the desired action.

The content of a copy may include sales pages, slogans, emails, technical documents, landing pages, website copy, blog posts/articles, speeches, social media posts, white papers, billboards, case studies, advertisements (both print and digital)  campaigns and catalogues, press releases and video scripts.

Copywriters are of 3 main types

  1. Freelance copywriters: Highly flexible work commitments, may choose to work with one or multiple clients and works remotely
  2. Agency copywriters: Works in an agency full time and serves multiple clients at once
  3. Corporate copywriters: Serves only the particular establishment where they are employed, requires less creativity.

Copywriting is of two major types Direct response copywriting and Branding based copywriting.      

What Does A Copywriter Do?

Copywriters write a copy. What else are they supposed to do? They focus on writing persuasively to get the audience attention, keep it and make sure to elicit the desired response. Copywriters can achieve this by obtaining key information from clients’ advertising briefs, and spin superb ideas, telling engaging stories or delivering an irresistible sales pitch.

Copywriters produce a good copy by paying attention to communication patterns depending on the target audience, diction, details, and the purpose of the copy. Copywriters also go through rounds of editing to achieve error-free content, work on every section of the copy, and are skilled multitaskers.  They leverage marketing data to inform their creative decisions, research competitors, and choose the appropriate copywriting framework. Copywriters are also tasked with determining the copy tone, defining principal selling points of the product, providing all necessary information in the copy and working with other creative departments

Copywriter requirements

Although the copywriting skill can be learnt and perfected without formal education or training, a copywriter needs to have a copywriting mentor. Practice and certain skills help produce a good copy. Here are the requirements that cut across all the types of copywriters.

  • Writing, reading, editing and proofreading skills
  • Search engine optimization (SEO) experience
  • Research skills
  • Salesperson skills and knowledge of various online marketing strategies.
  • Awareness of online content creation
  • Understanding human psychology
  • Organisation, multitasking and good time management.

How To Become A Copywriter

  • Learn the persuasive writing skill
  • Find your copywriting niche
  • Learn some human psychology
  • Create a portfolio
  • Land your first client

1. Learn the persuasive writing skill

The main goal of copywriting is to initiate a response or entice the consumer enough to swipe a card. Copywriting centres around persuasive writing to achieve this. Your words should be able to manipulate the action of your readers in your favour. This is why copywriters are one of the most sought people in the business world; this gives them limitless job opportunities.

This is one of the basics of copywriting and luckily there are a lot of resources available for you to pursue a successful career in copywriting and mastering persuasive writing. Although there is no cap end for this skill, it is a continuous learning process. Reading the works and following great copywriters is another way to master this skill.

These resources are a great place to start:

  1. Ten Timeless Persuasive Writing Techniques
  2. The Gary Halbert letter
  3. How to write a Copy
  4. Baron Archives
  5. 14 persuasive writing Techniques That Trigger A Response

2.  Find your copywriting niche

A niche is a specific area you feel most comfortable in or are interested in writing about. This is important as it establishes your credibility as a copywriter and maximises results. It is the specific audience you want to target. This area of specialisation is important as your clientele will want to know if it fits into their specific industry.  If you are fascinated by art and its creation you could focus on writing for art blogs or similar publications.

Focusing on one part of the market improves your expertise and gives you a better command of that area. The better you know about a thing, the higher your chances of writing a good copy and you charge more for your expertise. Choose an industry you are knowledgeable about and have testimonials in, this will help attract more clients. After figuring out your niche, concentrate on it and do not entertain thoughts like you are being limited.

3.  Learn some human psychology

To succeed in copywriting you must understand human psychology. Why? Understanding how the human mind works, what motivates your audience to click a link or go through with a purchase will help you channel your writing to elicit the desired response.

The attention span of an average human when reading something random is approximately 10seconds. This is a very limited time to get the attention of a person. Those first 10 seconds are crucial to keeping or chasing a client. You can start learning using this resource Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini.

Most modern copywriters cite this resource as a major tool behind their wins. So check it out.

P.S: When it comes to getting new customers and clients, you only get new business when your sales pitch is delivered with the right punch.  But it all begins with the idea behind what you’re saying. If you don’t get the idea right, your choice of words won’t have any impact on your prospect. This right punch is psychology.

4.  Create a portfolio

A copywriting portfolio is the first place you show off your copy skills. It is also known as a “Minimum Viable Portfolio (MVP)”. An MVP should contain an accurate and well-constructed sample targeted toward a client’s interests. It should be compelling. Every page on your welcome to the call to action button should be tailored to show you know your onions. Do not forget looks and aesthetics may score your extra points. List your achievements, tell us about your landing page and a tonne of active email subscribers.

It may be about 200-400 words in length and provides a concrete representation of the quality of writing you offer your clients.

5.  Land your first client

This is the focal point for copywriters. Landing your first client may not be a bed of roses or an easy task. Here are some steps to help you.

  1. Cold pitches: This is a direct method of contacting clients. It involves building an email list and sending an email or series of emails to a targeted audience of potential customers. These emails are aimed at introducing yourself and convincing them why and how to use your services. You want to detail how your services can help the organisation or the business. You can add a call to action button and attach your copywriting portfolio. This is one way to establish a client relationship continuously.
  2. Social media advertising: A lot of potential clients are on various social media networks. Funnelling your advertisement on social media platforms to reach your target audience helps you to connect and to gain exposure. Your advertisement should not be bogus but contain consistent and helpful information. Flex your creativity here, attract attention and make them want to contact you.
  3. Job boards: You may want to keep an eye on job boards. These boards are updated daily and can be helpful to see available opportunities. This allows you to choose which opportunities are of interest, relating to your niche and obtain some promising leads.
  4. Referrals: Testimonials are one of the best growth marketing tactics. When you have written a good copy that can convert for a client, do not be shy to ask them to write testimonials of your work. This will help other clients in the same industry find you faster and engage your services. This is a highly effective way of getting steady clients.

Copywriter skills

  • Detail-oriented
  • Writing skills
  • Communication skills
  • Inquisitive nature
  • Creativity
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