Copywriters write promoting materials with the intention to persuade or sell. If you like writing and think of yourself as quite persuasive this job may just be for you.
But a copywriter isn’t just a writer. Many components are going into this profession. Find out how to become a copywriter from our comprehensive guide.
Can Anyone Be a Copywriter?
Everybody can write, but what does it take to be a copywriter?
The copywriting skills are universal and helpful for a variety of jobs. But mastering them can get you a shot at becoming a great copywriter.
If you’re persistent, hardworking, and eager to learn, a copywriting career is just in front of you.
If you want more information about copywriting, check out our article on What Is Copywriting and What Does a Copywriter Do?
Whether you’re still in school or want to change your job, you can start your copywriting journey. You can do it at any time, and you don’t even need to leave the house!
What qualifications do you need to be a copywriter?
You don’t need to go to school or have a college degree to be a copywriter. Some people start copywriting in college and make a career out of it. They don’t even use their degree.
Of course, you can get courses and certificates, but you don’t need them initially.
Is copywriting hard to learn?
Anybody can learn copywriting and it’s extremely helpful in other industries as well. Copywriting skills are some of the most wanted abilities in the labor market!
You don’t need a college degree, in fact, you can start while you’re still in college.
You don’t even have to leave the house, because all the knowledge you need you can get online.
As copywriting isn’t something you can learn in school, it requires a lot of self-initiative. Unfortunately, no one can tell you exactly what to do to speed up the process.
If you are good at managing your time and have no problem learning new things, this should be easy for you.
The thing you need for starting in copywriting business is curiosity and humility. You need to learn a lot and want to learn even more.
What is a copywriter’s job?
There are several career paths for aspiring copywriters. Depending on the niche you choose, a different type of copywriting job will suit you best.
Copywriting agency is a marketing agency that specializes in writing sales copy. Copywriting agencies have multiple clients and projects at once. They carry out different processes to help a client’s campaign succeed.
Copywriters are typically expected to work full-time and often complete projects that can be more complex.
Corporate copywriters write for the products or services offered only by the specific corporation they work for. This kind of job usually has more stability. In addition, these positions are typically more consistent in subject matter and require less creativity.
Freelance copywriting offers the most freedom. A freelance copywriter can write for any project type and manage his own time. As a result, the schedule is highly flexible, and freelance copywriters can commit to as many or as few jobs as possible.
Check out our Content Marketing Strategy Checklist!
What skills does a copywriter need?
If you think copywriting may be something for you, we present you with some of the skills that are important for copywriting :
- writing clearly
- communication skills
- receiving feedback
- flexibility and fast learning
Copywriting isn’t just about talent. It’s also about practice. You can learn these skills with a bit of persistence.
If you want to learn more in-depth, check out 23 Copywriting Skills You Need To Succeed in Digital Marketing.
How to become a freelance copywriter step by step
We present to you the essential tips that will help you start your own copywriting business:
Understand copywriting basics
When you want to start anything, you need complete research. For example, learning how to write copy that sells requires reading many great copywriters’ work.
Apart from reading great copywriting examples, you can also read books on content marketing, copywriting, and sales, for example, “Content Inc.” by Joe Pulizzi.
If you want to know more books on marketing, check out The Best Books for Marketers Of All Time.
You can also search for YouTube videos or podcasts.
Copywriting courses are also a great idea. Again, there are free courses you can find online, but if you want to splurge, you can do that too!
Remember to find courses that offer specific advice on a narrow subject rather than generic tips you can get for free.
The research and reading should take you from a few hours to a couple of days.
A basic understanding of copywriting is all you need at this stage as you start to learn more through practicing copywriting.
Start writing copy
Practice makes perfect. If you want to be a great copywriter, you have to write a lot of copies.
The core of copywriting is persuasive writing. However, there are several key ingredients to writing a compelling copy.
First, there are different types of copies. Determining which one of them suits you best is the first step to learning copywriting.
You can choose from the following forms of copywriting:
- writing a headline
- writing a value proposition
- writing a landing page
- writing a sales email
- writing an advertisement
- writing a video script
If you want to make money, you need to be able to use persuasive writing skills in writing the types of copy that are in high demand.
You don’t have to learn them all, but it’s important to choose more than one.
Learning 2 or 3 types of copy will make you more flexible and you’ll get to know more persuasion tactics.
Each of these types of copy trains different copywriting skills. It’s great to know them all but it’s even better to be really good in just a few of them.
The process of learning the types of copy will take you about a day.
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If you want to practice copywriting in real life and kickstart your copywriting career you can ask your friends for help.
If you have a friend that owns a business, you can ask them if they need promotional material. Networking is extremely important in copywriting.
Choose your niche
We already covered the topic of types of copywriting; now, you need to choose one to focus on.
Why is choosing a copywriting specialty important?
Suppose you want to be a great copywriter rather than a good copywriter. In that case, you need to specialize in a specific niche.
Different types of copy require a different approach. For example, email subject lines are completely different than product descriptions or sales letters.
The niche of this copywriting project will focus on the targeted market and the audience that you want. You could find more work and earn more with a specialized niche.
It’s important to start with something you like. It’s possible to change it later when it doesn’t suit your situation.
Learn about different types of copywriting and find something that will suit you best!
Create a copywriting portfolio
What is a copywriting portfolio, you ask? It is also known as a Minimum Viable Portfolio or MVP. It’s a sample of your work that should target what your prospective clients look for.
An MVP is a sample of your writing work, it should be about 200-400 long. It should represent the quality of writing you offer your clients.
Your page should also be a part of your portfolio.
Set up the main page, a portfolio page, a contact page, and an about page to start.
Reach out to your first clients
At this point, you probably think you know a thing or two about copywriting.
But you don’t. Now is where the real learning begins.
The next step is to offer your copywriting services. To do that, observe job postings and apply for as many gigs as you can.
Job boards are an effective way to seek opportunities in freelance writing. They will allow you to choose what interests you the most and get some promising leads.
On these sites, you can find a steady stream of work. Of course, it will be from small clients who don’t pay well, but it can get you case studies and writing samples of work.
Bigger clients also exist there, and some can even lead to full-time copywriting job opportunities.
Build your reputation
The last step of becoming a copywriting is more of an ongoing process.
When you have already made the first steps, you’d want to grow and make more money. To achieve that, you need a consistent, recurring inflow of quality leads.
Referrals are a strong marketing tactic in this industry. Ask your clients if they would refer others to you or write a review of your work.
Can you actually make money copywriting?
Yes! If you are an aspiring copywriter, you may have some trouble starting in copywriting business. The most common problems at the beginning:
- you don’t know how to write persuading or compelling content that prod people into buying products and services
- you still don’t have any clients
- maybe your website isn’t ranking high on Google, and you’re not getting any visitors.
But here’s the good news: if you improve your copywriting skills, you can make money as a copywriter. How? Read on!
How much do copywriters make?
Copywriting salary varies significantly based on the job setting. Glassdoor estimates that copywriter salaries average $58,465 a year in the United States for authors in their home office or an established agency. When you become a freelance copywriter, it can be pretty lucrative.
In most cities, the typical pay for an in-house copywriter is about $60,000 per year. For freelance copywriters, you may safely raise those rates to around $75,000 – $80,000 for a copywriter with two years of expertise and a few excellent customers.
Suppose you want to earn six figures as a copywriter. In that case, you certainly can — many seasoned, successful copywriters have done so — but you’ll need evidence of your writing skills and the ability to deal with the pressure.
However, to achieve this kind of salary, you need to perform. There’s a reason some of the best copywriters in the world earn this much – they are really great at what they do.
How to make money as a freelance copywriter – a guide
Get your first gigs from job boards
If you want to succeed in freelance copywriting, you need to get good at copywriting as fast as possible. This means writing and learning to copywrite all the time.
Get as many jobs as possible, even if they don’t pay well. You will earn more when you can deliver an excellent copy.
Start with job boards, pitch job listings, probe your network, and network online and offline.
Spending most of your time pitching job listings is the best thing you can do. Here are some excellent places to find gigs:
- FWJ daily listings
- Problogger Job Board
Don’t get discouraged with rejection and keep applying for copywriting jobs.
I know it isn’t easy! Nobody enjoys being refused job after job, but you have to start somewhere.
Ask satisfied clients for referrals
Once you have business clients, you want everybody to know. One of the best ways to advertise yourself as a copywriter is an impressive testimonial on your blog.
Get an admirable testimonial on your website and LinkedIn. Ask if your clients can refer you if they hear of anyone who needs a writer.
Learn new formats
Once start writing informational content on websites, you can begin writing more valuable material. In addition, once a company gets to know you, they can often offer you work in a different area.
This way, you can learn more types of copywriting, determine your niche and find what you’re best at.
Write to your reader
You need the readers in your writings to be attentive to the writing process. How can I stop speaking to myself and speak to my audience? This means rewriting all your words “me” and “i.”
Your tired, boring text turns into an interesting, useful copy when you write to the reader.
Here you can learn How Long Should a Blog Post Be.
SEO optimize your page
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and is an effective way to bring you more attention and clients.
SEO optimizing your page ranks high in search engines when people look for related terms.
This way, you don’t have to pay for ads, but you still will be visible on Google. It’s a great way to generate leads fairly quickly with satisfactory results.
Especially if you have already chosen your niche, you can tap into the search results relatively quickly with long-tail keywords.
SEO is the best channel for copywriters because it synergizes with blog writing, which all copywriters should do.
Many businesses seek to hire copywriters via search because it gives them a sample of your work. Because SEO is about related keywords, all you have to do is write!
Build an audience on LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a great way to find prospective clients. Building your LinkedIn following can also increase your authority and popularity among other copywriters.
Copywriters on LinkedIn consistently post straightforward, helpful content. By doing that, they can engage positively with people in their niches.
You don’t need any experience or skills. The most important point is consistency.
LinkedIn is also great because it’s full of people likely to hire copywriters.
Guest blogging is another great leads channel. It means that you are frequently publishing guest posts on high-profile websites.
This is a great way to connect to other copywriters in your niche. You will also collaborate with editors who can offer you feedback and help you improve your copywriting skills.
Moreover, writing for different blogs can give you backlinks for your page and boost your SEO. The links prime your domain to rank for any SEO keyphrases you want to target.
Set up paid ads
This is more of a complimentary leads channel than a strategy on its own.
Most copywriters lean on SEO and networking and make ads as an addition to their portfolio.
People specifically looking to get into advertising realize fairly quickly that running the full campaigns is something they can learn.
And he big money in marketing comes from offering fully managed marketing campaigns rather than specific services.
If you can learn how to set up ads, you can offer a freelance service provider fairly quickly, which is the end of the copywriting spectrum.
However, not many copywriters decide to do this, but maybe it will suit you if you give it a try.
If you managed to get here, you’re on your way to becoming a professional copywriter!
Of course, it’s easier said than done. However, as long as you write and learn about copywriting, you’ll soon be able to find freelance copywriting jobs on the internet.
Never underestimate how essential reading is for improving your writing skills. There are thousands of books out there about almost any subject you can think of!
Remember to improve and refine your work, broaden your horizons, and network. Good luck!