Copywriters have superpowers. They can use language to persuades people to buy into a brand or product. Imagine skillfully stringing words together to give language to stories, creating alternate universes and shifting public perception on certain products or brands. Copywriters are indeed magicians and they play an integral part in the tech and marketing industry.

If you’re thinking of starting a career as a full-time copywriter or as a side hustle, we’ll answer all your questions about copywriting. From what exactly do copywriter do to how you can become one and everything in-between.

What is a copywriter? 

A copywriter is a person responsible for the text on websites, emails and push notifications. Copywriting differs from editorial or news because the goal is to get the customer to buy something and engage with a product, brand or service.

What skills do I need to become a copywriter? 

  • An excellent grasp of language and stellar writing skills
  • Superior research skills
  • Curiosity and staying on top of current affairs
  • Creativity

Do I need to study to be a copywriter?

Like most careers in tech, a bachelor’s degree in Language, Writing or Communications is advantageous, but it is not essential. People with a knack and curiosity for writing can teach themselves. Like any other career, you have to be a student and read up about it and learn as much as you can.

  • Learn how to conduct thorough research
  • Learn about Search Engine Optimization
  • Study digital marketing course material or watch YouTube tutorials

Do copywriters make good money?

The beauty of being a copywriter is that you have the power to make as much money as you want. You can work for agency, eCommerce or freelance, the opportunities are endless. You can be a copywriter in South Africa freelancing for international companies in the comfort of your home.

Some tips on becoming a successful copywriter: 

  • Register a domain (preferably your name), select the right web hosting package and create your website. This will be your portfolio that houses your CV, work and contact details.
  • Create a profile on Upwork to get freelance jobs and refine your LinkedIn profile so that potential employers can find you.
  • Write as much as you can. Writing is a muscle and the more you do it, the better you become at it. Write even when you don’t have freelance gigs, write through your writer’s block and write for fun.
  • Read more than you write. A fundamental rule of being a writer is reading more than you write. Reading will help with your vocabulary, creativity and will make you a well-rounded copywriter.
  • Be diligent about meeting deadlines. Professionalism goes a long way in getting more work opportunities.
  • Take existing campaigns and re-do them to showcase your skill and creativity. Plus, this will help you build on your portfolio and have samples of your work.
  • Put yourself out there. Approach people with content ideas and what you can do for them. Don’t be scared to put your work out there and share.

We hope these tips can provide you with a good starting point in your career as a copywriter. Also, check out below short courses to sharpen your skillsets: