So you want a copywriter help you craft words that will utterly convince potential customers they absolutely must buy whatever it is your selling or sign up to your service?
Before you fire that email, LinkedIn message, Twitter DM, or phone (hey, it happened once to me), there’s a few things you should know.
1) We don’t know what makes your business great. You do.
This has happened enough times to me that I am putting it first, because it’s by far the most disheartening thing for both you and your copywriter. Contrary to what some may believe, your copywriter doesn’t know how to sell your business.
The good news is, you do!
You know what makes your business successful. You already know how to sell whatever it is your make or do, and the kind of person who buys from you. It is your task then, to tell all this to your copywriter, so that they can shape it into something that not only succeeds and sells, but does so in a way that best suited to your medium (be it your website, your newsletter, your social media, or even your pamphlet, if you go in for that kind of thing).
2) What’s the point?
Copywriting is all about crafting a message that persuades the reader to take action, ideally to engage your brand and (eventually) buy what you are selling.
So it makes sense that when you take a call or sit down with your copywriter for to tell about your cool idea for a website, newsletter, or ad campaign, one of the first questions in their mind will no doubt be “How is this going to work for you?”
Is it going to help you gain more customers? Do you want them to download that white paper you put together about the benefits of working with professionals like you? Maybe you are doing market research and you want visitors to indicate what they are most interested in about your offering?
While good writing is an art, copywriting, at the end of the day, is a tool to help your business succeed. If it is not contributing your success, then why are you using it? Because if you aren’t clear on what the goal of the copy is, you could have the greatest copywriter in the world, but anything they write will be worthless if it isn’t help you achieve a business objective.
That said, a good copywriter should be able to help you better define the details of how the writing can work for you, but it starts with you having at least a basic idea of your objectives and desired outcomes.
3) Have a little trust
Assuming here that you are not your copywriter’s first client (if you are, thank you for your trust and support in giving a new writer a chance, we all have to start somewhere), it is the copywriter’s task to take all of that business information you have given them, and how it can crafted into something that is convincing and effective on the medium you are using, be it in print or digital.
Given an ongoing trend in marketing that shows that consumers are becoming less tolerant of content that doesn’t deliver value to them, as copywriters we spend almost as much time considering what doesn’t need to be in the copy as what does. The result should be effective copy that tells the reader the right amount of what they want and need to know to feel they can make an informed buying decision. This can be challenging for some business owners, especially if they are not used to having someone else work on the business’ messaging. However, if you hired a professional, you should be reasonable in trusting that they will deliver professional results, and they know enough about their craft to give you effective advice on how to best engage with your audience.
Now, I am not suggesting you follow whatever your copywriter says, far from it. At the end of the day, it is important that you, as the client are satisfied with the work. It is important that the copy be in the correct style and tone for your brand, and that it does help engage your audience. My suggestion, especially if you’ve never worked with a copywriter before, is limit the first bit of work to something small, so you can get a sense of what they are like to work with and the quality of their results. If they deliver the outcomes that you want, then consider taking on larger pieces of work to help you with.
If you enjoyed this, do check out other articles on this blog, all meant to help you understand the ins and outs of copywriting. If you are looking for a copywriter and think I could be a good fit, get in touch, let me know what you’re working on.