The Write Stuff – Digital Copywriting

By passion I am a writer and by trade I am anonymous.

As the voice of a company in the digital realm, it’s my job to talk to people (our customers and potential customers) as a brand – not as a single individual.

I get paid to sell our products by connecting with people. People like you and me. I love that my employer sees the inherent value in putting our customers’ needs first – but knowing we must act one way and actually doing it is sometimes harder than you can imagine. That said, a journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. And I know the steps we’re taking are a start in the right direction.

For example we’re holding dialogues with people instead of talking at them. And people are responding. I personally love facilitating these conversations online. We are getting feedback galore which is great!

Some feedback is negative, some is neutral and a few small glimmers of positive sentiment make all of the hours spent crafting words, planning content and staying up late to help people on Twitter worthwhile.

Today I attended a short course aimed at digital copywriters. I went in with an open mind and the in hopes of learning more about honing my skills around crafting content online. I came out of it with reinforced beliefs in what and how I do my job – I also picked up some great new ideas on how to do some of the things I already do differently.

So what did we talk about? We talked about being succinct. About editing our work and then editing some more. We practiced shaping words to create emotive responses. We threw around ideas on how to reach people faster using SEO. And a theme for the day bubbled up.

Brevity speaks volumes when it comes to writing for digital mediums. People are time starved and have the attention span of a gnat online. Being brutal when editing is key – as is not falling in love with your own genius copy. The course leader, John Maxim (copywriter extraordinaire), was full of energy and passion and the same geeky love for words that I myself have. To be a copywriter across mediums (digital and beyond) you must wear many hats to get into the heads of potential customers.

My favourite thing about copywriting is using my imagination. It’s almost like you’re playing a role in a movie – a role where you create the dialogue and the storyline. Putting myself in other peoples’ shoes, even if it’s all happening in my mind, is a lot of fun. Creating a journey to take customers on is even better.

The best part of the course today was that the day whizzed by. By that I don’t mean that I’m glad it was all over quickly, but rather that it was as enjoyable as it was informational and inspirational. I’ve been to conferences and seminars that could bore a stick into a slumber (yes, THAT boring). You go away from them thinking the best part about the day was the catering.

The copywriting for digital course was meaty and digestible. I’m glad to have attended. I’ll head back to the office bright and bushy-tailed tomorrow with a renewed sense of purpose and a vision towards changing, testing and perfecting our content.

Yes, right now my inner-geek is smiling and doing cartwheels.

2 Replies to “The Write Stuff – Digital Copywriting”

  1. I love how you describe your role – which is my role – as someone working in a similar position over Social Media your words ring true.

    It’s funny how the dialogue thing is still something that many marketers continue struggle to understand, even if they claim to be fully “embracing” social media. Even if, this is something that s at the very basis of good and honest copywriting, if you go back to the days of writing for print. I do believe copywriting – both traditional sense and contemporary, digital sense – still offers a vital skill set for the person operating and in the same sense, I think that social media offers up a vital skill set for the aspiring Copywriter. I find there is precious little time to edit things in real time social media, and it’s much different from the flexibility you have crafting a blog post. This ability to think on your fingertips is truly different I think from the “edit edit edit” mantra and almost completely alien to the days of print where you could do that. You can only edit so much – and even editing stuff kind of loses the immediacy and freshness of a spontaneous update. Would be interested to know your thoughts Cassie 🙂

    Anyway, it sounds like a fantastic course, I’d truly love to know more about it.!

    1. Thank you for your awesome feedback above. I’m a blog novice and just saw this comment.

      Will write you a proper response to this when I am not hunkered down with a sick child and sorting out a mortgage…new house. WOO HOO!!!!

      Again, thanks Jen. I love following your thoughts on Twitter and what you wrote above rings true.

      :o)

      Copywriters are really just writers that get paid. Which is awesome!

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