The True Value of Copywriting

Judging by my inbox these days, more and more people are looking to use professional copywriters, but why?

What’s their motivation?

As far as I can tell there are 3 main camps:

1. Joe who doesn’t have time

Joe spends 40+ hours a week chained to his desk. The work keeps pouring in and he’s struggling to keep his head about the water, but his boss keeps sending more his way.

The latest demand is for a re-write of the product descriptions on the company website. Its mind numbing work and Joe a) can’t be bothered and b) doesn’t have the time.

He’s just about got enough in the budget to get some help, so he Googles for a copywriter. The problem is he doesn’t see the work as important and so offers peanuts. And we all know what happens when you only want to pay peanuts.

The problem is, although the copy is fairly short, it’s vital to the success of the business. If the company’s product descriptions aren’t inviting, no one’s going to buy them.

The result? Joe outsources the work to a very cheap company (abroad) and ends up with substandard writing that simply doesn’t work – epic fail.

2. Frank who can’t write for toffee

Frank is also drowning in work, but also knows he doesn’t have the right skill set when it comes to creating engaging copy.

When his boss asks him to write the copy for their new corporate brochure, Frank turns very pale. After a meeting with his boss, Frank persuades him to get in a copywriter. The only problem is, his boss doesn’t see the value in getting someone else in and so sets a very low budget.

Franks is really frustrated because he knows it’s not enough to get a good writer on board, but his hands are tied and calls in a cheap writer.

When the copy arrives, Frank ends up having to re-write it, even though he’s far from confident in his own abilities.

Thousands are printed and taken to the next trade show…and are then brought back again because no one wants them.

3. Alice who values great writing

Monday morning is the budget meeting. Alice already knows she will be responsible for creating a new brochure, web copy and email campaign this quarter. She also knows there’s no one with the right skill set in the company. Plus, she also knows using someone outside will enhance the copy.

During the meeting she makes a strong case for using a professional copywriter and is granted a sizeable budget.

After a bit of research, Alice finds the perfect writer and meets with them to explain what the company is looking for. After taking a detailed brief, the copywriter creates exceptional copy that blends with the company’s brand and engages with the customer.

The result is higher sales, more traffic to the website and an enhanced professional image.

Joe and Frank go in search of help because they don’t have the time or skills, not because they understand the value of professional copy.

Alice, on the other hand, knows that good copy doesn’t come cheap, but she also knows that with it comes experience and the ability to engage customers.

If you think like Alice, your company will be going places.


Author: Sally Ormond, Copywriter and MD at Briar Copywriting Ltd. Follow her on Twitter and Google+



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#1 Damien on 09.26.13 at 11:06 am

Great post, Sally! I love how you’ve created these “client personas” and at the same time weaved a compelling story. Unfortunately there are way too many Joes and Franks around! Keep up the good work.

#2 admin on 10.02.13 at 10:17 am

Thanks Damien 🙂

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