“It’s OK, we’ve asked our receptionist / secretary / admin assistant to write it”

Recently I got one of those ‘urgent urgent’ emails where a potential client wants some high-quality copywriting done yesterday. Firstly, this always astonishes me because anyone with a business plan worth its salt should have planned this kind of thing in advance. And, secondly, it astonishes me even more when they email back to say “Don’t worry, we’ve got our receptionist / secretary / admin assistant to do it instead”.

Getting the copywriting right is just as important as getting a great web design or brochure layout. It’s not something that can be tagged on at the end as an eleventh hour afterthought.

Great, engaging copy… the kind of copywriting that generates orders and builds business… takes time and skill to write. And it should always be written by a fully trained, experienced copywriter. Never anyone else.

But even then there are copywriters and there are copywriters.

Some people call themselves a copywriter because they’ve got a degree in English. Or they think that they’re pretty good with words.

The things is, as I have said over and over again in this blog, true copywriters come from a copywriting background. We have worked, hands-on, in advertising agencies and done all the training.

Don’t get me wrong… I’ve nothing against secretaries. I used to be one, back in 1982-ish. It was as PA to the Company Secretary at one of the Top Three advertising agencies in the UK in the mid 1980s that I went onto train as a professional copywriter and work my way up through some of Yorkshire’s leading advertising agencies before going freelance.

Professional copywriters are like any other professionals – fully trained to do their job. And I know from over 25 years’ experience as a copywriter that writing great, engaging copywriting that generates business takes time, effort and skill.

It’s not an optional add-on to your marketing mix that can be dashed out at the eleventh hour by anyone who happens to have a free minute.


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