5 tips for working with a copywriter
At 42group we’re expert copywriters working with business, brands and organisations to help them communicate effectively with their audiences. Whether it’s a 140 character tweet or a 10,000 word annual report, we’ve done it all – and learned some important lessons along the way.
Here are 5 ways to work effectively with a copywriter.
Develop a strong brief
You know what you want, but it’s unlikely that your copywriter will – that’s why you need a strong brief. Your brief should include everything it is that you want from the content – the format, length, the style and details on where the content will be used.
Share your sense of style
If you have a style guide, make sure you include that and offer as much advice and guidance as you can to the writer on your house style. Being clear up front avoids any potential problems further down the road when your project is underway.
If you don’t have a brief, or don’t know exactly what you want then invest some time working together to co-create a brief that fulfils your objectives.
Words have energy, but clichés can sap it quicker than anything else. If you’re working with a copywriter, then choose one that demonstrates creativity and doesn’t rely on tired turns of phrase.
When checking out previous work some simple words and phrases that should cause you some concern include:
- Passionate about
- As unique as you are
- Think outside the box
- Our people are our most important asset
- The best kept secret in…
You should these cliches when you read them, and avoid them (and the writer) if you can. If you miss them, your customers won’t.
Be prepared to pay
Although we’re avoiding clichés, there is one we’re going to let pass and that cliché is, ‘you get what you pay for’. Nowhere is this more true than with copywriters. You should be prepared to pay a reasonable amount for the work you want done.
Most copywriters today work on a daily rate, so it’s important that you ask for this at the outset and you may need to work them at the start to calculate roughly how long the job should take them. Don’t forget to build in time for amends – this can add to your fee if not specified from the beginning.
Work with an expert
There are so many writers out there, some with very low rates, but remember that quality should trump cost when you’re looking for a copywriter. Before you commission anyone, ask to see their portfolio so that you can get a feel for their writing style and areas of expertise. Be sure to request (and follow up) references.
Finally, remember that while having a good copywriter on board can save you time in the long-run, it’s worth investing some time with them at the start to make sure they understand your business and its requirements. This person will be speaking for you with what they write, so it’s important that they adopt the right voice and mindset before they begin.
At 42group we’ve written words for some of the world’s biggest brands and business, as well as some of the smallest and most exciting.
If you’d like to chat about how our words can transform your business, please contact us today.