In this definitive guide, I’m going to teach you, what is copywriting? how to become a copywriter (step by step) without a degree or any prior experience.
So I hope you want to learn how to become a copywriter.
But don’t know from where to start?
Don’t worry, you’re in the right place.
In this guide, I will walk you through the step by step process of becoming a copywriter without a degree or any experience in copywriting.
Let’s dive right in!
Why Pursue A Career As A Copywriter In 2023?
Being a copywriter offers many advantages in 2023. They are essential in digital marketing, creating persuasive messages that attract customers. Copywriters produce memorable content that targets specific audiences.
With e-commerce and digital advertising growing, the demand for skilled copywriters increases. They work in different industries, have creative freedom, and can work remotely. Copywriting offers competitive salaries and a successful career for those skilled in persuasive writing.
What Is a Copywriter?
A copywriter creates written messaging to sell or promote products, services, or brands. They are not connected to copyrights. Copywriters craft the written content for businesses and organizations.
What Does A Copywriter Do?
Copywriters create engaging content across multiple mediums, using persuasive writing to educate and entice audiences for immediate or future purchases. They develop ideas based on client briefs, paying close attention to detail and word choice.
Copywriters produce error-free content, enhancing marketing efforts and establishing brand identity. They handle various projects simultaneously and excel at multitasking.
Copywriter responsibilities include writing for emails, direct mail, media campaigns, press releases, billboards, flyers, radio, TV, and social media ads.
What are the main types of copywriting?
Copywriters write copy and provide consumers and clients with information about a particular service or product. The three main types of copywriters are:
1. Agency copywriters
Agency copywriters work full-time for agencies serving multiple clients. Their role involves completing challenging projects that require creativity to assist clients in establishing their brand identity.
2. Corporate copywriters
Corporate copywriters have job stability, focusing on writing for their employer’s specific products or services. Less creative freedom, but consistent subject matter.
3. Freelance copywriters
Freelance copywriting provides maximum freedom in subject matter, project type, and time commitment. The schedule is highly flexible, allowing freelancers to choose their workload.
Copywriter: Roles & Responsibilities
A copywriter’s roles and responsibilities involve creating persuasive and engaging written content for various mediums and platforms. Here is a comprehensive overview of the roles and responsibilities of a copywriter:
Writing Clear and Compelling Copy
Copywriters are responsible for crafting clear, attractive, and persuasive copy for different mediums such as advertisements, blog posts, newsletters, social media, websites, and more. They use their writing skills to engage target audiences and effectively convey the intended message.
Conducting Research and Interviews
Copywriters conduct thorough research to gather relevant information about the product, service, or topic they are writing about. They may also conduct interviews with subject matter experts or clients to gain insights and ensure accuracy in their copy.
Collaboration with Creative Professionals
Copywriters often collaborate with designers, PR professionals, marketers, and other creative team members to develop and execute marketing projects and campaigns. They work together to align the copy with the overall marketing strategy and ensure consistency in messaging.
Editing and Proofreading
Copywriters review and revise their copy to ensure it meets high editorial standards. They carefully edit for grammar, language, flow, and coherence. Proofreading is essential to eliminate any errors or inconsistencies before the final content is published or distributed.
Copywriters have a good understanding of search engine optimization (SEO) principles. They incorporate relevant keywords, meta tags, and other SEO techniques to maximize the reach and visibility of their copy in online platforms.
Copywriters may be responsible for sourcing images, graphics, and other multimedia elements to complement their written content. They ensure that visual elements align with the copy’s message and enhance its overall impact.
Copywriter: Skills & Qualifications
Copywriters are professionals who specialize in creating written content for advertising and marketing purposes. They are responsible for crafting persuasive and engaging copy that encourages readers or viewers to take action, such as buying a product, using a service, or visiting a website. Copywriting has a long history and has evolved alongside various communication mediums, from print advertisements to television, radio, and the internet.
To become a copywriter, certain skills and qualifications are essential. These include:
Strong Writing Skills
Copywriters need excellent writing skills to effectively convey ideas, craft compelling narratives, and engage their target audience. They should be able to adapt their writing style to different formats and mediums.
In addition to written communication, copywriters should possess effective verbal communication skills. This helps them collaborate with clients, colleagues, and stakeholders, and enables them to present their ideas and pitches confidently.
Copywriters working in the digital realm require technical skills to navigate content management systems, create web pages, apply basic formatting, and leverage various online tools and platforms.
Creative thinking is crucial for copywriters as they are tasked with generating original ideas, developing unique concepts, and crafting compelling messages that stand out in a crowded marketplace.
Copywriters need to conduct thorough research on products, services, target audiences, industry trends, and competitors to ensure their copy is accurate, relevant, and aligned with marketing objectives.
Time Management and Multitasking
Copywriters often handle multiple projects simultaneously, requiring effective time management skills and the ability to prioritize tasks to meet deadlines.
How Long Does It Take to Become a Copywriter
Learning copywriting typically takes 3-6 months, although mastery may require more time. The recommended approach is to start with a foundational course and progress to advanced levels. Many digital marketing programs offer copywriting courses for learners.
Becoming skilled in copywriting requires practice and time. Copywriters are adept at concise writing, delivering persuasive messages in a few words. Urgency in writing prompts readers to take desired actions.
How Much Does a Copywriter Make?
As per the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for copywriters in the United States is $69,500. Earnings are significantly impacted by factors such as education, skills, and experience, with the lowest 10% earning approximately $38,500 annually and the highest 10% earning $133,500.
What Is the Job Outlook for a Copywriter?
The professional writing industry is projected to grow by 9% from 2020 to 2030. With businesses increasingly focusing on digital marketing, skilled copywriters proficient in online writing and social media will be highly sought after, offering a competitive edge in the future.
Where Do Copywriters Work?
Copywriters work in various industries and settings. Here are some common places where copywriters can find employment:
Copywriters often work in advertising agencies, creating compelling copy for various campaigns, including print ads, TV commercials, radio spots, and digital advertisements.
Many companies have in-house marketing departments where copywriters play a crucial role in developing marketing strategies, writing content for websites, social media, email campaigns, and other marketing materials.
Digital Marketing Agencies
With the increasing emphasis on online marketing, copywriters are in demand at digital marketing agencies. They create persuasive content for websites, blogs, online ads, social media, and other digital platforms.
Copywriters are essential for e-commerce companies to write product descriptions, promotional content, and persuasive sales copies that drive conversions and engage customers.
Many copywriters work as freelancers, offering their services to multiple clients across industries. Freelancing provides flexibility and the opportunity to work on diverse projects.
Step By Step Guide To Become A Copywriter 2023
No set path to become a copywriter. No degree needed, but background in journalism, marketing, or writing boosts marketability. Tips for becoming a copywriter:
Step 1: Learn copywriting basics
Being an effective copywriter is more than following basic directions or writing information clearly. Copywriting entails a deep understanding of customer needs and human psychology. It requires the ability to catch the audience’s attention quickly and effectively while arranging words, pictures and call-to-action elements in an appealing manner.
Step 2: Developing Writing Skills
To become a proficient copywriter, honing your writing skills is essential. Practice writing regularly, explore different writing styles, and experiment with different tones and voices. Developing a unique writing style will set you apart in the competitive copywriting industry.
Additionally, familiarize yourself with grammar, punctuation, and style guidelines. Good writing skills will enable you to convey your message clearly and effectively to the target audience.
>>Learning Resources: 7 Ways to Improve Your Writing Skills
Step 3: Understanding the Target Audience
Copywriting is all about persuading the target audience to take action. To achieve this, it’s crucial to understand their needs, desires, and pain points. Conduct thorough research on the target audience, including demographics, preferences, and motivations. This understanding will help you create tailored and compelling copy that resonates with the readers.
Step 4: Researching and Gathering Information
Before diving into writing copy, conduct comprehensive research on the product, service, or topic you’re writing about. Gain in-depth knowledge about the features, benefits, and unique selling points. Use reputable sources and gather relevant data to support your claims.
Step 5: Creating Compelling Copy
Now it’s time to put your writing skills and research to work by creating compelling copy. Start with a captivating headline that grabs the reader’s attention. Structure your copy with a clear introduction, body paragraphs that highlight key points, and a persuasive call-to-action.
Remember to use persuasive language, employ storytelling techniques, and emphasize the benefits and value proposition. Use active voice, keep sentences concise, and maintain a conversational tone to engage the reader.
>>Learning Resources: How to Write Compelling Copy
Step 6: Working with Clients and Collaborators
As a copywriter, you may work with clients or collaborate with other professionals, such as graphic designers or marketers. Effective communication and collaboration skills are essential in understanding client requirements, incorporating feedback, and delivering high-quality copy that aligns with the overall marketing strategy.
Step 7: Building a Portfolio
A strong portfolio is crucial for showcasing your copywriting skills and attracting potential clients or employers. Create a collection of your best copywriting work, including a variety of formats and industries. Highlight your successes, the impact of your copy, and any notable achievements.
>>Learning Resources: How to Build a Winning Copywriting Portfolio
Step 8: Networking and Finding Opportunities
Networking plays a vital role in the copywriting industry. Attend industry events, join professional associations, and connect with fellow copywriters and marketing professionals. Networking can lead to valuable connections, job opportunities, and collaborations.
Additionally, explore online platforms, such as freelance marketplaces and job boards, to find copywriting gigs and job openings. Build your online presence through a professional website or portfolio to showcase your work and attract potential clients.
Step 9: Continuous Learning and Improvement
Copywriting is a dynamic field that evolves with changing consumer behavior and technology. Stay updated with the latest marketing trends, copywriting techniques, and industry best practices. Engage in continuous learning through online courses, workshops, and reading relevant books and blogs.
How to Find Jobs As a Copywriter
To succeed in copywriting, you need clients. This section will help you take the final step by guiding you on finding high-quality copywriting jobs and clients:
Depending on the type of copywriting job you want (traditional 9-to-5 or freelance), you need to search in different places. Networking is essential for success in finding a job, regardless of your chosen path. Besides networking, a strong portfolio is crucial. Your portfolio is more valuable than any degree when it comes to getting hired as a copywriter.
Traditional copywriting jobs:
To find a traditional copywriting job, you first need a solid portfolio. Then, prepare a resume that includes your education and work experience. When looking for jobs to apply to, there are numerous sites like LinkedIn and Indeed with thousands of options.
To stand out as a copywriter, it’s better to identify a specific agency or company you want to work for and send your information directly to the appropriate person. At most companies, you should reach out to the creative director or someone in the communications department.
While it’s helpful if a company is currently hiring so you can seize opportunities, don’t underestimate the value of networking and getting your portfolio into the hands of potential employers.
Freelance copywriting jobs:
In my experience, the best way to find freelance copywriting jobs is to identify companies and niches that you’re passionate about and directly pitch your services to them. It’s beneficial to determine your prices in advance, so you can include them in your pitches and avoid the awkward dance of negotiating rates with new freelance copywriters.
Getting established as a freelancer takes time, so be patient while you pursue opportunities.
How to Become a Self Taught Copywriter (Without a Degree)
You can become a Copywriter without a degree through enrolling online Copywriting courses and practical experience gained from internships, apprenticeships, or entry-level positions. Consider obtaining an certifications, attending training programs, or taking professional development courses to enhance your writing skills and impress employers.
Best Courses To Become A Self Taught Copywriter
Explore top courses to begin your self-taught journey as a Copywriter. Unlock a fulfilling career by enrolling in suitable courses.
>>Learning Resources: Best Copywriting Courses & Certifications 
Free Online Copywriting Courses
These free online copywriting courses will teach you how you can write persuasive and professional copy, driving your business’s profitability, making the best of your marketing and push you towards your goals. These courses will teach you all the tips and tricks you need to write copy that convinces new customers of the value of your goods and services.
>>Learning Resources: Best 7 Free Online Copywriting Courses
How To Become A Freelance Copywriter?
To become a freelance Copywriter, you can either pursue formal education or learn on your own, as explained earlier. Then, you can work as a freelance Copywriter on platforms like Upwork or Fiverr.
>>Learning Resources: The Best Freelance Websites to Find Work in 2023
Benefits of Working As a Freelance Copywriter
As a freelance copywriter, there are several benefits you can enjoy. Here are some key advantages of working in this role:
- Flexibility in working hours and location
- Opportunity to work on a wide range of projects for different clients
- Autonomy in selecting projects and clients
- Ability to align work with personal interests and strengths
- Ample opportunities for professional growth and skill development
- Potential for higher earnings compared to traditional employment
Average Copywriter Salary
As of Jun 12, 2023, the average annual pay for an International Copywriter in the United States is $67,124 a year.
Just in case you need a simple salary calculator, that works out to be approximately $32.27 an hour. This is the equivalent of $1,290/week or $5,593/month.
Top cities for International Copywriters with above-average salaries are San Francisco, CA, Fremont, CA, and San Jose, CA. San Jose, CA surpasses the national average by $10,293 (15.3%), and San Francisco, CA leads with an additional $15,174 (22.6%) above the $67,124 average.
Relocating to these cities can offer excellent economic opportunities. However, salary variations among the top ten cities are minimal, with only a 10% difference between San Francisco, CA, and Barnstable Town, MA. Consider the cost of living as a significant factor when deciding on a location for an International Copywriter position.
Frequently Asked Questions About Becoming A Copywriter
What is the average salary for copywriters?
The salary of copywriters can vary depending on factors such as experience, location, and industry. According to industry reports, the average salary range for copywriters is between $40,000 and $80,000 per year.
Can I become a copywriter without a degree?
While a degree can be beneficial, it is possible to become a copywriter without one. Building a strong portfolio, gaining practical experience, and showcasing your writing skills are often more important for potential clients or employers.
How long does it take to become a copywriter?
The time required to become a copywriter can vary. It depends on factors such as your educational background, prior experience, and dedication to learning and practicing copywriting skills. Some individuals may start their careers relatively quickly, while others may take several years to establish themselves.
What industries hire copywriters?
Copywriters are in demand across various industries, including advertising, marketing, e-commerce, technology, healthcare, and finance. Virtually any industry that requires persuasive and engaging content can benefit from the services of a skilled copywriter.
How can I improve my copywriting skills?
Continuous improvement is essential for copywriters. Read books on copywriting, study successful copy examples, take online courses, and practice writing regularly. Seek feedback from professionals in the field and learn from their expertise.
Becoming a copywriter is an exciting journey that requires a combination of creativity, communication skills, and business acumen. By developing essential skills, gaining relevant education, building a portfolio, and actively seeking opportunities, you can embark on a successful copywriting career. Remember to continuously refine your craft, network with industry professionals, and stay updated with industry trends to ensure your success as a copywriter.
Remember, this guide serves as a starting point, and your determination, passion, and commitment will be the driving forces behind your success. Best of luck on your journey to becoming a highly skilled and sought-after copywriter!