What is a copywriter?

A copywriter is a writer who specialises in business communication. A copywriter’s main focus is encouraging the reader to take some kind of action, or direct response. That action might be buying a product, making an enquiry about  a service, or signing up to a mailing list.

Copywriters are not “wordsmiths” (although they should be able to write great prose when required). They specialise in deciding what elements of a message are important, and working out the best way to construct those messages so that they resonate with a specific audience.

A copywriter can do everything from evaluating your competitors and your target market, through to constructing great headlines and content for your website, bullet point summaries, and writing sales letters and business proposals.

Why do businesses need copywriters?

Many people in business are great at running their business, but not so great at communicating what they do or what’s unique about them. That’s what copywriters are trained to do – it’s our whole reason for being!

An experienced copywriter will evaluate your business and prioritise your unique features and the benefits of using your product or service over somebody else’s. Then they put those core messages into words and help you communicate them to your audience in the most effective way possible.

When should I hire a copywriter?

You should hire a copywriter if you have evidence that your sales and marketing can be improved by changing your written communication.

Another reason is if you are starting a business venture and want to make sure your product or service is presented in the best way possible. There’s no point spending a fortune on beautiful web and graphic design or marketing reports if you’re then just going to do all the writing yourself or delegate it to somebody within your business who has no training as a writer. Having well-constructed messages that are tailor made to your audience is just  as important as having an attractive website. Your business depends on it.

How much does it cost to hire a copywriter?

There’s a huge range of price variation when it comes to hiring a copywriter. The most sought-after copywriters in the world fetch tens of thousands of dollars for a single consultation. Then at the other end of the scale, you can hire a copywriter on Elance or Odesk for as little as $6 per hour (see below). As with most things, you get what you pay for, so be prepared to outlay some money for an experienced copywriter with proven results.