It is sometimes baffling to realize just how MUCH people misunderstand the job of the copywriter.
(And to be 100% real here, the #1 reason why a copy project might go sideways. It doesn’t happen often, but 99.99% of the time this is the reason)
So what is that job? It is not to pander to art directors that’s for sure. All glory to ADs that’s due but uhm… nope.
It’s also not to come up with WILD ideas… Well sometimes it is that too but it is not an unhinged activity to then be reigned in by projects managers, ADs and what have you.
So what IS the job of the copywriter?
Quite simply it is to transfer enthusiasm.
Transfer your enthusiasm about the product that you’re selling because you KNOW all the secrets and you can’t wait to tell those who stand to benefit the most from those secrets.
And of course you are the customer advocate in this equation. You have the job of making sure that their needs are being heard in the copy, in that exchange.
So much so that when they read the letter they will think that you read their mind and you are clearly there to ask you ate their fears and make their lives better in so many ways. It becomes obvious right from the lead copy if not the headline stack already.
It is an exciting and exhilarating activity to be able to stand right there in between needs and wants and having that secret solution that will easily instantly and cost efficiently fulfil those. Right?
That is the attitude that a good copywriter will start out with.
And it is the mark of a well polished sales letter or whatever other sales piece you might format it into… When you start reading it and you can take your eyes away from it.
The structure is so easy on the eyes, the way it speaks to you is so direct and compelling that you want to keep going… and most of all the lure of the possible solution becomes so strong that you just convince yourself that the payoff will be there and you’d lose SO much if you interrupted yourself.
This is the way effective sales copy really truly works. This is what copywriting truly looks like.
You transfer what you know to be true and fun and easy and completely compelling…
to those who only know the problem and perhaps an inkling of the solution.
And because you know the structure of taking people through the motions on the page, you will have the confidence as a copywriter to know exactly what to say, when to say it, and how to word it, and format it so that it will produce a rhythm of enthusiasm and a desire for the solution to their wants and needs and problems.
It is truly a great service that you are providing both to the seller AND of course to the customer first and foremost. You will serve both and they will equally benefit. And you yourself of course right there in the middle. The best place to be in all of marketing, the best view you could ever have into the world of business whether it is online or offline.
There is an air of mystique around copywriting, no doubt about that.
But that really comes from – not some kind of manipulation – but the fact that a lot of the mental action that happens is precisely in the domain of showing people secrets that they didn’t know.
And showing them that those secrets are even more amazing than they might’ve ever imagined. And that they will do so well for themselves by stopping everything and following closely what do you have to say and do for them… because it is clearly so beneficial to them.
You can even begin by saying it out right. The most famous piece of lead copy ever. Remember, there’s never any shame in telling your readers exactly what to expect, how to think about it, and why to do about it.
Seriously, it’s the best job on the planet. But shhhh… it’s a secret.