What does it take to become a copywriter?

You? A copywriter? Forget it!

Only the uniquely gifted possess the rarefied talents required to become copywriters. Only the chosen ones can even dream of attaining the almost super-natural skills required to make words do the business for their business.

Right?

Wrong – very wrong.

In fact, so wrong that, if you want to be less wrong, you could consider joining the Flat Earth Society. Or, you could start believing that the cure for the coronavirus is to ingest ladlesful of Wilko floor cleaner.

So then, what will it take for you to become a copywriter? Not just any copywriter – but one whose way with words will inspire your readers to believe in and act on your message.

What does it take?

Creativity?

Slavish dedication to the rules of grammar?

A first-class degree in English Language?

Nope – none of these.

Here’s the truth – and for goodness sake, keep it to yourself.

Anyone can learn how to write.

Anyone … and right now you’re reading words written by a (just about) living, breathing example.

I guess you’re musing, “If this bloke’s right, then why do I find writing so damned difficult?”

The process of writing copy is mostly science, technique and process and yes – a judicious sprinkling of inspiration and practice come in handy too.

Let’s look at each of these in turn.

Science

 

You need to understand a smattering of psycholinguistics – to learn how language impacts on us in different ways. How it makes us feel; how it makes us respond. This stuff really matters, and the best writers know it. Wasn’t it the actor, poet and activist, Maya Angelou who famously declared –

"People might forget what you did. They might forget what you said – but they will never forget how you made them feel." ?

Psycholinguistics is why –

Call today for more information

is so much less effective than

Don’t miss out! A phone call is all it takes!

It’s that old devil called FOMO – Fear Of Missing Out.

Study the science of psycholinguistics, and you’ll have taken the first steps towards becoming a copywriter.

 

Technique
This is the learned skill part. There are dozens of ways to turn turgid, yawn-inducing blocks of heavy text into sharp, snappy and effective copy. Here are three of them –

Use short sentences.
Use short words.
Use short paragraphs.
There we are – that wasn’t too onerous, was it?

You’ll find these and 12 more technical tips on an infographic right here.

 COPYWRITING TIPS x

 

Process
This is all about how you go about your copywriting work - researching into your topic and target market - working on your early drafts - proofreading.

Inspiration
Don’t let anyone kid you that you’ve either got it or you haven’t. On the other hand, don’t kid yourself that inspiration comes easy. You need to work at it … and here’s how.

To write excellently, you need to read excellently, and often. You need to read things called books, books that tell stories. Yes - novels. Novels that transport you to unexplored worlds, evoking feelings and emotions. Sure – books about copywriting are important too, but those that inspire you will be those that spark feeling.

Practice
Once you’ve mastered the science, the techniques and the processes of copywriting – once you’ve infused these with inspiration, all that’s missing is practice. Try writing something – anything – every day. Put into practice all that you’ve learned, and the techniques and processes will become second nature. You’ll have fun along the way too. You’ll be writing your web copy, your brochures, your newsletters and sales letters in no time at all … just you see!


More Copywriting Tips


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Aug 24, 2020
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