Newbie copywriting can be intimidating. As you study marketing gurus, ads, and campaigns, it’s easy to be consumed by inferiority, especially if you’re not familiar with what copywriting is.
And if you’re wearing multiple hats in your business or nonprofit – and writing is one of them – well, your inadequacy may escalate even further.
But when it comes to the writing world, here are a few insider’s secrets:
If you can put together a string of words, you’re already a writer. Becoming a copywriter is then a question of acquiring a few skills … and then working hard and persistently to get better.
(It’s the “hard work” part that most wannabes can’t get
around. So if you’ve got a work ethic, read on.)
Writing to persuade … whether it’s to sell a product, solicit a gift, market a service, or convince the reader of a viewpoint.
A copywriter is a unique combination of writer, researcher, human psychologist, and marketer – one who draws on the following skills:
There is no certification or exam you must pass in order to be designated as a copywriter … no official course you must take in order to be recognized as a copywriter. Many successful copywriters never formally studied writing. (Having said that, instruction is truly helpful.)
Training. Many believe that because copywriting is a specific skill, Gary Halbert’s 10,000 Hour Rule applies. That is, since it takes 10,000 hours to become proficient at a skill, you will need to invest 10,000 in learning the art of copywriting before you can identify yourself as a copywriter.
Acknowledgement. Along the way, you may find you use your writing skills to persuade. Others may ask you to write for them. Although may you have not yet invested 10,000 hours in developing your copywriting skills, you feel comfortable calling yourself a copywriter.
Experience. If you have “write to sell” mindset and have at some point used your words to convince a reader to take an action, you’re already a copywriter. (How good you become is another matter.)
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