22 Feb How To Know You’re A Copywriter At Heart
These days, writing jobs seem to be precarious or freelance. There’s nothing wrong with freelancing. In fact, it can be a freeing and fulfilling path. We’re just here to assure those who are seeking the stability of an in-office, 9-5 job that these positions do still exist! Whether you want to write for media or marketing outlets or for another industry altogether, the written word is very much in demand. In this case, we’re going to be discussing the benefits of having a career in copywriting.
Here are some ways to tell if this job is right for you.
You can write
It stands to reason you should have a good grasp of the language to be a writer. Yet what surprises some writers is, while you should hone your skills as much as you can, you don’t have to be a George R.R. Martin lookalike to produce some bang-up stuff. Understanding the subject matter and the tone that needs to be conveyed is really important, though. Whether you’re doing technical writing for a tool and dye company or a sharp little radio ad about dish soap, knowing your subject matter and feeling out what your employer and audience wants to read/hear is key. These criteria will help you decide what word choice, sentence structure, length, etc. will be appropriate for any given assignment. And never be afraid to use a dictionary or thesaurus when editing. Seriously, these resources are invaluable when you’re on a tight deadline and need to find a synonym for that word you’ve used ten times in a single paragraph.
You appreciate people
People are pretty awesome. Spending time around others and really listening to them can allow you to craft your work in a very human way. This is because it enables you to get a better understanding of what topics others would like to read about. From here, you can judge what tone would be appropriate to use while not being biased or disregarding facts. Being around lots of people can help give you broader perspective about certain things while interviewing certain people/groups can give you more specific insight about topics.
You appreciate yourself
Just as we writers can absorb information and inspiration from the world around us, we can do the same from within. Staying in touch with what you’re thinking and feeling can help move a project along and give you confidence in your writing abilities. You can also add a bit of your own personality into your writing style, depending on the nature of the assignment.
You can do/enjoy doing research
Contrary to what its name suggests, copywriting doesn’t involve much copying. On the other hand, it usually involves a lot of research. So if you love seeking out interesting or juicy info, copywriting could be for you.
Research usually involves scouring the internet for material, though it can also mean going out and finding good sources to interview. Whether these are people you are assigned to speak to or individuals you seek out independently, interviewees can provide great quotes to add meat to your project.
Be careful not to spend too much time collecting facts. This will clog up your day and make whatever you’re working on way too long. On the contrary, you just need to do enough research to give your audience key facts which they might not already be aware of.
You have a voice and can mimic that of others
Everyone has a voice. What tends to distinguish writers from, well, non-writers, is their ability to put it on paper. In other words, writing as though they’re speaking. Although sincere, it should be mentioned this is a delicate art as well, which, as with most things, ought to be used in ways dependent on the project itself. For instance, you wouldn’t use too much slang in an article about house insurance (but car insurance on the other hand is totally up for grabs…just kidding). In colourful pieces or ones that just need some oomf to grab people’s attention, putting a bit of vocal flair in there could really do the trick.
If you can plunk your vernacular on paper you might also be able to learn other people’s. This could help you out a lot as a copywriter, especially if your writing style has to reflect a client’s. Read samples of work they’ve published before to get a handle on their linguistic tendencies.
Copywriting can be educational, enjoyable, and a great way to learn more about yourself and the world around you. Although your experience will depend a lot on who your employer or clientele are, there are still nooks for your own spark of personality to manifest in. These can be a blast to find, and ya know what? So is helping other people refine their own voice on the page.