I have found over the years that copywriting is one of the most misunderstood marketing disciplines in business. In fact, even today I occasionally get calls asking ‘how do you make a living putting © symbols on things?’ to which I have to explain that I’m not a trademark attorney! Therefore, let me give you a brief primer on copywriting and why you should hire a copywriter:
What is copywriting/why hire copywriter?
What is copywriting (also called storytelling)?
Let’s start with the basics — what is copywriting? The best definition I’ve heard is that copywriting is salesmanship in print, using the written word (regardless of media) to educate, inform, and ultimately compel someone to purchase your product or service. This definition is even more valid in this era of social media. I would also add that copywriting significantly shortens the sales cycle, making your marketing resources more efficient. After all, to which customers would you rather have your salespeople selling? Customers who know nothing about your products/services or customers who know why they want your product and are ready to buy?
Why is copywriting important?
The reality is even if your product/service is the best thing since sliced bread it will most likely fail without proper marketing. Apple, Honda, and Federal Express (to name just a few) didn’t get where they are today simply by having better products/services—they had better marketing, and that starts with effective copywriting as well as branding. After all, if your target market can’t understand why they should buy your product/service you’ve lost them—probably forever.
Why not do the copywriting yourself?
You can but it isn’t recommended. Copy is how your company tells its story, how it sells itself, and how your customers will perceive your brand. Plus, when it comes to fiercely competitive outlets like websites and social media, you’ve got few chances to make a good impression. In fact, current studies demonstrate your company has only eight seconds to hold a web visitor’s attention, assuming the visitor stays at all. Eight seconds! Anything watched on a smartphone is even less. Therefore, the importance of good copy cannot be stressed enough. And if you’re like most of my clients you’ve got a lot on your plate already, and more than likely have little bandwidth to undertake much else. Given the mission-critical status copy holds for your company, isn’t it better to hire an expert?