Copywriters need to know their stuff

It’s not the first time it’s happened: being presented with another copywriter’s attempt at some copywriting which was… how shall I put it? … er… not great… And being asked to re-write it into something that makes sense.

Now, as a professional copywriter, criticising other copywriters’ work isn’t something I like to do. After all, I’d be mortified if another copywriter pulled my own work to pieces.

But, to be truthful, this copywriting was poor.

It was clear that the original copywriter hadn’t “dug deep” and insisted on a full brief from the client, outlining all the product / service benefits. They hadn’t done further research into the product / service to see what the competition is doing and what other people are saying about this particular marketplace.

And, just as important, they hadn’t written it in a way that the end user would find appealing, informative and motivating.

Instead, it was what I call “clever copywriting”: the copywriting equivalent of “corporate speak”. It looks impressive at first glance but, at the end of the day, it’s meaningless. (By the way, I adore the Gobbledegook Generator on the Plain English Campaign website – have a go, you’ll love it!)

As a direct marketing copywriter, I’ve had it drummed into me that good copywriting should be like having a conversation with the customer. And, when you have a meaningful conversation with someone, you don’t stand there impressing them with your creative vocabulary and flowery sentences, you talk to them direct – engaging them and then motivating them into responding. In this case, into purchasing the particular product / service. To do this, you need a proper brief. You need to know what you are talking about. And you need to talk about it in a way that the customer finds appealing.

With my brand of copywriting, I never go ahead until I have all the information I need. After all, if I haven’t a clue what I’m writing about, then the end user hasn’t a hope in hell of understanding it either.

And I never use “flowery” or “creative” words, phrases or sentences. (Even though I call my business “Creative Copy”!!)

It took a while to “dig deep” and get what I wanted from the client. But I succeeded. Then I wrote about it in a way that the end user would find engaging and informative. And the end result is, I believe, far better than the original.

And the client agrees.

To put more than 20 years of copywriting expertise to work for your business, visit me at www.creativecopy.co.uk

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