Freelance Copywriter

Hiring a Freelance Copywriter? Here Are 5 Skills To Look For

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Copy is all around you. It’s on the billboards you pass on your morning commute, the websites you visit every day, the emails that flood your inbox, and the ads that pop up as you scroll through your social media feeds. 

All those words strung together in the most compelling way to make consumers take action have been carrying businesses’ success for decades. They generate awareness for your brand, build and nurture relationships with your customers and trigger conversions. That’s true of a two-word tagline just as much as a 2000-word blog post.

If you’re a business owner who’s on the prowl for freelance copywriting services to take your marketing game up a notch, here’s a whittled-down list of the best qualities to look for in a copywriter candidate:

1. Writing Skills

Obvious as it may seem, copywriters should have exceptional writing skills. For this, having a firm grasp of grammar, punctuation and spelling is, of course, a given. But beyond that, they should be able to craft clear, concise and engaging copy for every piece of content they produce, be it brochures, film scripts, press releases, articles, blogs or social media posts.

Much like an artist who knows how to manipulate lines and colors to create a masterpiece, copywriters need to weave words together into interesting stories for different mediums, target audiences, and business goals.

2. Research Abilities

Great writing relies on solid research. Relevant statistics and data can add credibility to a piece, make an argument more convincing and make a topic more relatable to the reader. 

This aspect becomes even more crucial when writing for niche industries or technical subjects. Suppose you’re a business consultant in the UAE specializing in services like business process re-engineering, corporate restructuring, and merger and acquisition advisory. 

For such complex, industry-specific topics, your copywriter should be able to conduct comprehensive research to understand the depth and nuances of what you offer, as well as find supporting data and examples to back up their writing (and your company’s claims).

This will allow them to explain your services in simple enough language for your readers to grasp, ensure accurate and credible information, and portray your business as a leading authority in your field.

3. Creativity

“Lemon.” A one-word headline that launched one of the most renowned and successful ad campaigns in history: Volkswagen’s “Think Small” by Doyle Dane Bernbach in the 1960s.

At a time when buying a German-made car in post-World War II America was an unsavory idea, DDB’s copywriter, Julian Koenig, turned it on its head with his unconventional copy. The ad, a self-deprecating, satirical take on the car’s size and design, captured the attention of millions of Americans with its wit, humor and an abrupt full stop that encouraged readers to pause and think about the brand in a new light. 

Today, 116 blog posts, six websites, 1,099 Instagram posts and 5,787 tweets go live every second. If your brand has any chance of standing out in the sea of content, you need a copywriter who can take even the most mundane, boring topics and bring them to life with fresh, innovative ideas and perspectives.

4. Empathy

Empathy is an invaluable quality to look for in a copywriter. Being able to put themselves in your audience’s shoes and understand their needs and struggles is the recipe for creating a highly targeted and effective copy that resonates with them.

A great example of this is IKEA’s “Make Home Count” campaign, launched in Singapore in 2020. In the throes of a global pandemic, where everyone was forced to stay at home, IKEA’s campaign beautifully captured those little moments many people often take for granted — cuddling and playing with their children, cooking with their partner, or working from home in a cozy corner — not only empathizing with their audience having to adapt to a new way of living and encouraging them to find comfort in their own homes but also subtly positioning themselves as the brand to make this new normal count.

Empathetic copywriting fuels your brand’s emotional connection with its audience. It conveys to your customers that you care about them and highlights the human side of your business, something they’re more likely to identify with (and buy from) than a cold, corporate tone. 

5. Knowledge of SEO

Search engines are the modern-day yellow pages. If your website isn’t on the first page of Google’s search results, it might as well be invisible. That’s why search engine optimization (SEO) is an integral component of any business’s digital marketing strategy.

An SEO-savvy copywriter knows how to incorporate relevant keywords organically into your content, optimizing it for search engines and improving your website’s ranking. They also understand the importance of meta descriptions, title tags and headers in driving traffic to your site.

Mastering SEO means better visibility, higher chances of reaching your target audience and more conversions. 

Find the Right Copywriter for Your Business

Whether you’re looking to hire a freelance copywriter or work with an agency, finding someone who embodies these qualities can do wonders for your brand’s marketing efforts. 

Use this list to help you identify the ideal candidate who can produce impactful copy that speaks to your audience and drives results for your business. 

Also Read: Skills Every Entrepreneur Should Have



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