How do you know you're ready to hire an ad copywriter?
If you have a product or service to sell, a copywriting expert can help you do it better. There are several reasons you may need an ad copywriter. They are:
- You're having trouble writing your ads or if you want a more professional-looking finish
- You're launching a product or campaign
- You need to focus on other areas of the business
Copywriters create compelling sales messages designed to draw in the customer (while also conveying the features and benefits of the product or service). They understand how to write copy that moves people to action. They know how to get to the customer's core emotion and what format works best for your ad.
When you're ready to hire an ad copywriting pro, ensure they have a good understanding of your product or service and the audience you're targeting.
What does an advertising copywriter do?
In short, copywriters write the content of adverts for various media formats (such as print, banners, digital ads, website copy, email sequences, blog posts, radio adverts, scripts for video ads, and social media posts.
Basic writing is just the tip of the iceberg, as compelling copywriting requires several additional elements, including strategy, research, and creative skills.
- They help brands capture their target audience's attention by crafting persuasive messages that inspire them to act.
- They create headlines, taglines, body copy, slogans, and other types of written content for print and digital media outlets—including websites, emails, banners, digital ads, and blogs.
- They work with brand and marketing teams to create campaigns that communicate the company's message while demonstrating an understanding of the target audience's needs and desires.
- They conduct in-depth research on their target audience, buyer personas, product, and market.
What makes a good copywriter?
An excellent copywriting specialist writes texts that attract, entice, and persuade. To achieve that, they need to understand their target audience, be creative and think outside the box, have excellent writing skills, and use persuasion.
Let's talk about each one of these skills.
Understand their target audience
The most important aspect of the job is knowing who your target persona is, and that can be done by gathering quantitative and qualitative data.
Quantitative data (such as information in Google Analytics or other tools) can help writers find out how their audience behaves online and what appeals to them. This involves conducting in-depth research to identify their needs, hopes, and dreams.
Qualitative data (from customer interviews, for example) can also help them better understand how their audience talks, their pain points, and what triggers them to take action.
Be creative and think outside the box
Copywriting experts need to be able to produce creative, engaging, and eye-catching copy. This means they should be able to create stories that connect with their audience emotionally.
Creative thinking is essential here. User attention spans are getting shorter and writers need to know how to capture their audience's attention and keep them hooked until the end.
Have excellent writing skills
Conversion copywriters need to find the right tone of voice, concepts, and words to relay the campaign message.
This means a copywriting expert should have an excellent command of grammar, punctuation, and spelling and a good understanding of different figures of speech and how to use them to create vivid images.
What's more, copywriters should know how to write concisely. Being too wordy can distract from the main point, and too much text may not be effective (especially in digital media).
Understand the power of persuasion and use it effectively
Copywriting is not "just writing". It's persuasion -- which means that a copywriting specialist needs to use the power of words to convince people to take action. This requires understanding human psychology and the ability to craft persuasive messages.
A senior copywriter knows how to use the right words and phrases, create a call to action, and craft compelling stories that magnetize people and urge them to take action.
What skills should an advertising copywriter have?
OK, say you're looking for an excellent senior copywriter. What are the skills you should be looking for?
It all depends on the copywriting project you have in mind. However, experienced copywriters should have the following skills:
- Strong research skills – The ability to research and find information on their potential customers, advertised product, and the market.
- Outstanding written and verbal communication skills – This is essential for producing clear, concise, and catchy copy.
- Creativity – The ability to come up with imaginative concepts and stories that capture your audience's attention.
- Professional writing experience and a track record of success – Make sure to mention if you have specific needs (like in-house, freelance, or marketing agency experience).
- Writing samples – These are essential to demonstrate.
- Industry experience – This is not a must, but in some industries, having a good understanding of the market can be beneficial (e.g., a B2B copywriter should know how to address your ideal clients).
- Marketing skills – Knowing how to promote products and services across different channels, as well as how to collaborate with other marketing departments and creatives.
- Strong SEO skills – This is essential for producing effective copy in a digital space, but it might not be a must for landing pages, brochures, and other print media.
- Advanced grammar and language use knowledge – Being able to write clear and engaging copy requires mastering the basics of grammar and having a good command of the language.
- Persuasion skills – The ability to convince someone to take action by tapping into their psychology
- Time management and organization – Ability to deliver on deadlines and have a quick turnaround time
- Detail orientation – Being able to create accurate, error-free copy means paying attention to every single detail
- Marketing strategy – A solid copywriting expert will know how to use their experience to leverage different marketing strategies and get the most out of your marketing dollar
- The ability to work with minimal supervision – This is important for freelancers and in-house copywriters alike, as it allows them to take initiative, produce high-quality work quickly, and meet deadlines
- Adaptability – Knowing how to adjust their writing style, tone, and approach based on the audience and medium is a must.
- Teamwork skills – Copywriting experts should know how to work with other team members to develop a marketing campaign.
- Basic knowledge of CMS (content management systems) – This is essential for writers who work in digital media, as it allows them to upload or edit content quickly and easily.
- Familiarity with different style guides (AP, Chicago, etc.) – Although not a must, this is important for maintaining consistency across different platforms and channels.
These are just some skills you should look for when hiring an advertising copywriter. Ultimately, your project, requirements, and ideal customer will dictate what kind of expert you need to hire.
For instance, if you're hiring a freelance copywriter, they might not have to upload texts into your CMS (and thus, they won't need experience in this area). Likewise, if you hire a direct response copywriter, they won't need SEO experience (as search engine optimization is separate from the scope for direct response copy).
How much do copywriters cost?
How much a copywriter costs depends on a variety of factors, including their experience, your industry, as well as how much research and writing your project involves. Generally, you can expect to pay the following:
- $300-$2,000 for a blog post or website page
- $30-$300 for a PPC ad
- $150-$2,000 for an email
Remember that the type of employment you choose also affects pricing. For example, an advertising agency might cost more because they have an entire team ready to help you.
Lastly, consider additional costs such as editing fees or research expenses. Be sure to ask your copywriter about any hidden costs before signing an agreement!
How to write a copywriter job description
Writing a clear copywriter job description will help you attract suitable candidates and find the right fit. Remember to include the following:
- The scope of work (what you need, specifically)
- Project timeline (when you plan to start, what is the delivery date)
- Background (if you need experience in a given industry, for example)
- Requirements (language level, software knowledge, and so on)
- Compensation (salary range, potential bonuses, incentives, etc.)
- Your company's unique values and mission
- The tone of voice you're looking for
- Any other details (e.g., preferred working hours, preferred type of contract, etc.)