You cannot underestimate the value of a strong copywriter.
Think about it. Why would you go through all the trouble of hiring someone to design a beautiful website, brochure or other marketing assets, and then fill it with amateur, poorly written copy?
Copywriting is a totally different monster than your run-of-the-mill business writing. Having well-written copy is the single most important thing you can do for your business—that is, if you want to sell your products or services.
First things first: What is copywriting?
Copywriting is a skill. It’s not enough to just put words down on “paper” about an upcoming promotion or list a bunch of benefits and features. Any subject matter expert can go on and on about a product or service.
Copywriters, in as few words as possible, convince people that they can’t live without that product or service. Yes, they are writing sales promotions and marketing materials, but they’re using the right imagery, tone and words for a particular audience in such a way that readers act, whether that is by buying something or signing up for something free.
Think of it like this: A writer might be able to beautifully describe your business, product or service. A copywriter—a good one anyway—will convince people that they should only do business with you.
So, should you hire a copywriter?
If you are selling something … if you have a website … if you are creating marketing pieces or sales material … yes. Even if you love all the marketing copy you’ve created and never want to change it (which is a huge no-no), copywriting is a skill you can always use.
First, you should be changing up your marketing copy, as the times, your industry and your customers change. Second, if you use email to market, you need someone to craft fresh messages with a variety of subject lines to ensure emails actually get opened.
Beyond that you should also be tailoring messages to fit different types of customers. Studies have shown that more focused, personalized—even individualized—messages convert more.
Finally, even the blogs, infographics, whitepapers, webinars and eBooks you create stand to improve if they’re written by someone with copywriting skills. Why? Because they are all intended to do one thing: sell your products and services.
Sure, you want to be a thought leader. Sure, you want to build consumer trust. Great content does that. But a great copywriter can provide people with value and information—all the while leading them to the conclusion that they should take one more step toward giving you their business. Copywriters reinforce your brand across all your marketing mediums, whether that is your website, a brochure or a tweet.
Copywriters keep the marketing and sales goals always in focus, and that isn’t a skill that every writer possesses.
What should you look for in a copywriter?
Whether you hire a full-time employee, or outsource your copywriting to a freelancer or agency, we highly recommend you find someone who is committed to truly understanding your industry and your customers.
The person doesn’t necessarily have to come to the table with expert-level knowledge of your industry, products or services, but the best copywriters show a strong commitment to learning about them. They have insane research skills, and they know how to ask you the right questions so that they understand the purpose of your business, the image you want to portray and what your customers expect of you.
Bottom line: The content you put out there speaks to your credibility, authority and reliability. A beautifully designed website will grab people’s attention—but the copy is what is going to sell your brand, business and products.