This is the first part of an easy self-help series for small business owners. In this brief introduction, the focus is on the human side copywriting. Other parts will explore the technical side of copywriting.

What makes a good copywriter? How about a great one? 

Some people think all a copywriter does is ‘write’ using a formula. Some people think anyone can write great copy. Well, that’s partly true.  

But, there’s much more.   

A good copywriter is:

  • a great listener,
  • keen observer,
  • creative thinker and
  • thoughtful researcher.  

That sounds a little simplistic. Right? But take away those human skills and you’ll see a difference in the quality of work produced.  

Copywriting and advertising are communication 

It shouldn’t be a surprise to consider the skills for good communication are needed in copywriters.  

Everyone wants to be heard and understood; business owners want the same.  

Copywriters really need to hear their client’s (the business owner) expectations, ideas and dreams. The copy the writer produces must reflect their client’s personality and voice.  

Great copywriters will likely practice something else called ‘close listening.’ This is the ability to listen with ears, mind and heart. It includes body language. It includes processing what’s said, the tone, the word choice … and what’s not said.  

Copywriters are keen observers and creative 

Copywriting uses descriptive writing. Descriptive writing is creative. It’s the ability to bring the product (or service) into being an actual ‘thing’ in the consumer’s imagination simply through words. 

Copywriters notice details about a product (or service). Often, the copywriter brings new eyes to the process and sees the product objectively. This might lead to a fresh way of thinking about the product (or service).  

Or, a copywriter might suggest a new approach as they work through the process with their client.

 Copywriters are curious researchers 

Accurate research is vital. Copywriters can spend days researching for their project.  

Why does they do this? Reliable research creates credibility in the copy:

  •  It validates claims and promises
  •  It takes away fear in the consumer
  •  It boosts the client’s reputation as a trustworthy expert  

And today, credibility is vital because consumers are tired of the fakers.  

What else makes a good copywriter great?  

There’s an instant benefit for the client to work with a copywriter who has experience in their business. 

For example, some businesses are scientific.  It makes sense to find a copywriter who has that background. A counselling business may require a warmer tone and touch.  

Each business has its own world and language.  

When the copywriter has a background matching the business, less time is needed to bring the copywriter up-to-speed.  

Great copywriters are reliable professionals

This means they’re running their own business responsibly:

  • Agreements are signed, deadlines are honored
  • Problems are anticipated and are solutions found
  • Communication is respectful and clear 

Finally, what else makes a good copywriter great?  

The best copywriter will have all these skills and will be the one you, the business owner, can have a great professional relationship with.    

Ms Charron is a copywriter with more than 35 years of experience in a variety of industries. She’s a copywriter who is focused on remembering the human heart in advertising; and enjoys working in self-improvement and personal growth.