Published and Paid #5: The In-Demand Skill of Copywriting
What if you could secure your career as a writer by learning an in-demand skill with great income potential? Even better, what if you could use skills you already have to break into a high-paying industry as a writer? With copywriting, you can do both!
In Part 5 of the Published and Paid series, Coach Tam breaks down the reason copywriting is always in high demand and how you can hone the skills you already have as a writer to become an excellent, well-paid copywriter.
In this episode, you’ll also hear:
- Why copywriting is such a high-demand, high-income skill
- Common misconceptions about copywriting
- The basic skills you need to succeed as a copywriter
- Coach Tam’s personal recommendation for a program to get you started and walk you through every step of the process
*We are a participant in the AWAI Affiliate Program. Should you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.
There’s a lot of talk in the Christian author community about ways to make more money. Often, the recommendation is to niche down, figure out who your tribe is, and then find ways to market your work more effectively. If that’s your goal, you’ll definitely want to go back and check out Part 2 of this Published and Paid series.
So far, we’ve covered three paths you can take to make money as a writer, and now it’s time to take a look at the fourth path. This path is often overlooked. In fact, it’s probably thought of even less than public speaking or coaching. But it’s not something you should sleep on, because it’s a field of writing that will always be in demand: the field of copywriting.
What Is Copywriting?
Copywriting is a high-income skill to possess as a writer, because organizations large and small are always in need of someone to produce compelling, persuasive, and interesting marketing materials. As a copywriter, you can be that someone. You can earn a very good income using the writing skills you already have to create ad copy, web content, brochures, and much more.
And the best part? You can often set your own hours, and you can literally work from anywhere in the world.
Copywriting is the art of being persuasive, so there are a lot of things you could write that fall into this category, from sales letters to emails to social media posts and more. And all of these content pieces share the same goal: to get people to take action.
Another important thing to know about copywriting is that it’s a skill you can learn, even if you don’t feel like you are particularly persuasive right now. (Trust me, I know this from experience!)
Before we get into some tips on how to get started with copywriting, let’s first address the proverbial elephant in the room.
You see, copywriting is often misunderstood. It falls in the category of marketing, and many of us have negative belief systems about marketing. It’s often perceived as a dark art, a way to manipulate people into buying things they don’t need. But nothing could be further from the truth!
Copywriting is simply the art of crafting compelling copy. The goal is to find the right words to communicate your message in a way that resonates with your audience. That’s really all that it is.
Are there some unscrupulous individuals who use copywriting for less-than-honorable purposes? Of course there are. But let’s be honest, there are people in every field who do not operate in a way that is consistent with Christian values. Copywriting is no exception, but – just like in every other field – the vast majority of professionals in this field are ethical. They only want to help themselves and other business owners and organizations achieve their goals.
So it’s true that not all copywriters are created equal. And you can be a part of changing the narrative by operating your copywriting business in a way that honors God.
Another reason copywriting is often misunderstood has to do with the word “persuasion.” For some people, persuasion is associated with manipulation and coercion. But it doesn’t have to be.
You see, there’s nothing inherently wrong with using words to influence someone’s thoughts or actions. And let’s be real: we all do that every day, whether we consider ourselves a copywriter or not. Have you ever tried to convince your boss to give you a raise, or your significant other to go on a date with you? That’s persuasive communication, and it’s the same skill a copywriter uses to convince people to buy a product, click a link, or sign up for a newsletter.
Persuasion is a skill that we use every single day, and you can absolutely use it in a way that both honors God and helps the company meet their objectives. What’s more, as you develop this skill and put it to use for other people, it will also make you better at marketing your own books and message.
3 Basic Skills for Copywriting Success
There’s no perfect formula for becoming a great copywriter, but there are certain skills and qualities that will help you succeed in this field. You might have some of these basic skills already, but if not, you can likely develop them with a little bit of work.
1. Good copywriters are good communicators.
Most of us know that good writing must be clear and concise. After all, who wants to read a rambling essay, a sloppy email, or a book that just goes on and on with no end? But what most people don’t realize is that clear, concise writing is especially important for anyone who wants to become a highly paid copywriter. In the world of advertising and marketing, every word counts. So the best copywriters are able to distill complex thoughts into concise, powerful prose.
However, if you aren’t confident you can write clearly and concisely, that doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t become a good copywriter. It just means you need to work on those writing skills.
In addition to expressing yourself clearly and concisely in writing, being a good communicator also means understanding the needs and expectations of your client or audience. In other words, your writing can’t just be good; it needs to be effective at reaching the audience you’re writing for.
Think about it this way: even if you’re using copywriting to market your own books, you have to understand the audience’s needs so you can create material that meets their expectations, right? It’s the same if you’re working with a copywriting client. You have to understand who their audience is, who they’re trying to reach, and what goals that audience is trying to accomplish, because that will help you target your writing more effectively. And that will help you create content that delivers value.
2. Good copywriters are creative and think outside the box.
Often, copywriting requires you to come up with original, attention-grabbing solutions to promoting a product or service. That’s essential, because the client is coming to you because they don’t have that skill. They know their products and services, but they don’t know how to present them in a way that grabs attention and prompts people to take action.
As a writer, you probably already know the importance of being creative and thinking outside the box. You already use those skills in your own writing, whether you write fiction or nonfiction. As a copywriter, you’ll simply take those same skills and mindset and apply them to coming up with fresh ideas to set yourself apart from the competition. And the better you get at doing this, the higher the rates you’ll be able to charge.
Yes, creativity can be challenging. You may be tempted to wait for inspiration, and if you do, inspiration may never come. Instead, you have to learn to inspire yourself to write. How? By creating an environment that inspires you to take action.
Sometimes this means taking a break from writing and doing something completely different. For example, once you have the basic concept you need to write about, you could take a walk, watch a movie, or read a book on that subject to get more familiar with it. Sometimes you have to take yourself out of “writing mode” and expose yourself to new experiences. This opens you up to new possibilities and gives your mind the opportunity to come up with fresh ideas.
3. Good copywriters are well-organized and detail-oriented, able to manage multiple projects at once.
To maximize your income, you’ll need to work with multiple clients. And each of those clients will have unique deadlines, needs, and expectations. That means you need to be good at juggling!
It also means you need to ensure the copy you put out is good. It should be user-friendly and easy to read, with great attention to detail and on-point spelling and grammar. The goal is to produce high-quality work that meets your clients’ expectations.
Copywriting is always in demand, and chances are good that after you work with a client, they’ll need a copywriter again for other projects down the road. So if you knock it out of the park the first time, they’re likely to come back to you with further needs.
So how do you ensure you’re meeting client expectations? By developing skills in these basic areas:
- Organization: Manage your time well so you can meet deadlines. Pay attention to the details of spelling, grammar, etc. Take advantage of online tools to stay organized, check for errors, and keep track of dates and tasks.
- Staying on top of trends: Copywriting as a skill has existed for a long time. But there are always new and exciting ways to convey information, and the client base is always changing and evolving. The best copywriters stay up-to-date on what’s working now and constantly adjust their writing approach accordingly.
With all this in mind, if you have good communication skills, are creative and can think outside the box, and are well-organized and detail-oriented with the ability to manage multiple projects at once, then you are already well on your way to becoming a successful copywriter.
Take Action Today
There are a number of different ways to get started with copywriting. But one of the best ways is to go through courses or programs that will help you take the concepts you’ve read about in books and put those skills into practice.
If you’re looking for a good program to guide you through the process of developing your copywriting skills, check out our friends at the American Writers and Artists Institute (AWAI). Their training program equips you with everything you need to know about copywriting, from the basics of grammar and punctuation to more advanced concepts like persuasion and marketing. Best of all, you’ll be able to put your new skills to use right away. Whether you’re looking for a six-figure income or just some extra spending money, AWAI can help you to get started.
So what are you waiting for? Get started today, and watch the world of copywriting open up before you! Even if you don’t think you’re interested in taking a course right now, why not just take one small step in that direction by checking out what programs are available and asking yourself if this copywriting path could create additional income streams for you and your family?
My name is Tamara “Coach Tam” Jackson and I am a published author, Facebook© Certified Digital Marketer, host of the Top 100 Publishing Secrets podcast, and founder of The Christian Authors Network (C.A.N.) Facebook© community. I specialize in helping mission-driven authors, coaches, and entrepreneurs increase their exposure, impact, and income through strategic self-publishing and digital media appearances. Just say yes and we will work together to attract a tribe of loyal followers that 1) “get you”, 2) love what you do, and 3) are happy to invest in your book, business, cause, or movement. Plus, we will accomplish all of this without fake, salesy, sleazy, or manipulative tactics. Yes you CAN write, publish, and profit in a way that honors God; join the community today at https://christianauthors.net/fbgroup.
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