Do you like the idea of being able to write blogs similar to the one you’re reading right now? Or writing other interesting and creative content within an advertising or marketing team? A copywriting career may be exactly what you’re looking for!

What do copywriters do?

Copywriters are tasked with writing text for advertising or other marketing purposes. They may write blogs, content for websites, copy for advertisements, television and radio scripts, social media posts, brochure material, or direct mails.

Copywriters can be found working in companies across all sectors, and job responsibilities vary from field to field and company to company. The big advantage is that you will find copywriting opportunities in any field that really interests you! For example, if you’re passionate about tourism and hospitality, then you can search for a job as a copywriter within a travel agency, hotel group, or events company.

What skills and training do you need to be a copywriter?

If you want to become a copywriter, then the most obvious thing you need is a natural talent and passion for writing. Writing courses and other educational tools may be able to improve writing skills, but these will usually build on an existing ability to write reasonably well.

In general, top skills required of a copywriter include:

  • Creativity: You need to be able to create unique, interesting and attention-grabbing content.
  • Communication: When writing a piece of copy, you need to be able to write in a way that connects with the specific audience you’re targeting.
  • Collaboration: You need to be able to work effectively with colleagues in the marketing or advertising team, such as graphic designers, content editors and web developers.
  • Working to deadlines: You will generally be working according to an editorial calendar, with specific deadlines that you have to meet.
  • Flexibility and adaptability: You need to be able to adapt your writing according to the type of project you’re working on. For example, copy written for a blog will be very different to copy written for a brochure or advertisement.
  • Attention to detail: You need to ensure that your copy is free from spelling and grammar errors.

When employers look for copywriters, they normally expect candidates to have training or qualifications in marketing, advertising, or journalism and media studies. You will also need to present evidence of your written work, in the form of a portfolio or any other pieces you have written. You’ll be able to impress employers if you’ve completed “add-ons” such as a specialised writing course or SEO course.

What does a typical day look like for a copywriter?

Let’s imagine that you’re the tourism copywriter mentioned above, working at a travel agency. Here is an example of what a typical day may look like for you:

08h00 – You arrive at the office and have a look at your editorial calendar, checking the deadlines for the blogs that you’ll be writing for the company website in the coming week.

08h30 –  You’re writing a blog about travelling to Thailand. You start doing research on the country, and make contact with your company’s travel agents to find out what a tour to Thailand will offer to customers who take this option. You lay out a basic framework for your blog, including potential sub-headings.

09h30 – Your goal is to make this blog appealing and informative for potential customers. It’s important to write an introduction that will immediately grab attention, so you pay special attention to this. Once the introduction is done, you start writing useful information about the tour.

10h30 – You have a meeting with the marketing team to discuss statistics related to your various marketing campaigns. You are also given the responsibility of writing copy for a new brochure that will be used at a tourism expo your company will be attending.

11h30 – You also need to write copy for a direct email that will be sent to the company’s database of contacts today, informing them about a promotion – 20% discount on a tour to the Kruger National Park. You spend an hour writing some concise, attention-grabbing copy that will hopefully encourage readers to take action on the promotion. You send the copy to your manager to review before the mail is sent out.

13h30 – After lunch, you get back to writing your blog about Thailand. You include some interesting facts about the attractions tourists will get to see, and some reasons why travellers should consider visiting the country. You seek to creatively describe the beaches, culture, and monuments, in a way that will appeal to readers of your blog.

15h00 – You go through your blog and see where you can add hyperlinks and keywords for SEO purposes. It is important to ensure that these do not interfere with the flow of the copy.

15h30 – If your blog has appealed to readers, then they will hopefully want to discover more about costs, itineraries, and booking information. So you finish the blog with a “call-to-action”, such as a link to the full tour description. Remember that your ultimate task is not just to write, but to assist with the overall marketing strategy, improving brand awareness and gaining new customers.

16h00 – You find some relevant images from previous tours your company has taken to Thailand. This will add that all-important visual element to your blog. You send everything off to be approved by your manager.

16h30 – Before the end of the day, you give a few minutes’ thought to the copy you will include in the expo brochure. You begin thinking of a few catchphrases and headings that will grab the attention of people attending the expo.

You leave work feeling satisfied by a productive, creative and rewarding day!

If you’re looking for a way to put your writing talents to good use, and making a career out of it, then you should definitely consider the field of copywriting.

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