A copywriter or a content writer – which one does your startup really need?
Two guys, one girl
Imagine you are a high-school girl screaming to Elvis’s moves, but still a virgin. Dreaming of someone who will protect and love you forever.
If only that could be Rob, the school heart-throb. He is gorgeous and cool. His athletic figure grabs everyone’s attention the moment they see him. Your encounters are brief and intensive. Rob is fun-loving, everything he says is simple and direct, yet smart. You would so want to impress him with your wit, to talk about literature and music every day after school. But he doesn’t walk you home.
The other guy does. A true gentleman, Michael explains math well. He is a bit nerdy, but kind and understanding. You have long talks about school projects, books, and rock & roll. He is like a dear friend who you can trust.
One night after a school dance the heart-throb walks you home. He puts his arm around you and gives you a kiss. Finally! And then he calls you to… action. Whoa, that’s a little too fast for you. Rob is really persuasive. He says he can feel you so well, why not get to know each other completely? And if you reject him, he will be devastated.
You know that any girl could have him.
But you are a virgin and plan to stay one until marriage!
Still, if you really like him, why not dance “Viva Las Vegas“ together tonight, Mary dear?
Remember Michael? He would never be so direct. Like a true gentleman, he has been walking you home for a year, never asking for anything. He gives you help whenever you need it. The husband material, if you asked your mom. But then again only time will tell that he does everything to keep you by his side as long as possible. However, he respects your decision to remain virgo intacta until marriage and will never try anything… like Rob.
Who would you choose — Rob of Michael?
Copywriter vs. Content Writer
Both guys have an ulterior motive but use different approaches. The heart-throb is Robert Copywriter, the gentleman who walks you home is Michael Content Writer. They both understand how you feel. The first tries to manipulate you with the sense of urgency to get what he wants. The second asks for your attention to get close to you.
Rob is attractive and captures people’s attention immediately. He is very adaptable and knows the high-school “market“ very well, so he creates great connections with the students around him.
His friend (your classmate) told him about you, so Rob knows how to approach the target persona. He uses empathy to sell his thing more easily — he will make you feel a certain way so that you decide to buy it.
Rob speaks the simple language. He gives you benefits of losing virginity to back up his great story: you will become wild and free. He doesn’t talk about features such as pain and the risk of unwanted pregnancy. Robert makes you want to take action.
Copywriter’s attitude is ideal for a salesman — he could easily catch future customers (new leads) or sell something to them. His direct persuasive voice would be excellent for short forms such as radio jingles, TV commercials, banners, ads, today’s social media, website landing pages, and email marketing. He is more forceful in his approach than Content Writer.
But our dear Michael Content Writer also has great empathy. Aware of all your likes and dislikes, he gives you what you need most — let’s prepare for the math test together, I’ll always be there for you. I’ll make you trust me over time and create a strong relationship so that one day I could get what I want — you will need me.
Michael is also great at storytelling. He will engage you in any physics task as if it were a story. This way you will understand it better. He is very adaptable and can talk to everyone from the cleaning lady to your strict dad, Ph.D. Also, he will subtly convince you with facts to go on foot instead of taking a school bus, always mentioning benefits, not features.
Michael is ideal for a writer or a scholar. He could easily write longer forms such as newspaper articles, blog posts, white papers, eBooks, and editorials.
A perfect match
These two guys would make a really good team in marketing and branding: your startup needs both of them for content creation.
Good content educates readers and makes them become more interested in the brand. Mix it with the copywriting part — a direct, short, and clear call-to-action (CTA), and people will do the concrete thing. Thus, with the help of both the company will achieve its objectives of sales.
Examples of a good CTA (copywriting) can be found on landing pages with blogs (content writing):
“Subscribe to our newsletter“,
“Try it for free“,
“Read more about…“
Also, copywriting tells readers how awesome the brand is. Still, too much copywriting will make them run away from you — nobody likes to be sold to. Therefore, content writing can help copywriting: it gives people time to want to know your brand better.
A word of advice:
Both of these writing forms need someone to guide them — a content strategist, who makes a plan what is written, how to write content, and where to publish it. The content has to be useful both for the readers and the business.
As for those who do the writing — some people are copywriters, some are content writers, and some can be both!
*A plot is a series of events in a story that make the character develop in a certain way— think of it as a fairy tale with several episodes in which the protagonist changes
Note: I used typical stereotypes to make the concepts easier to understand, without any wish to mock or disrespect anyone.
This post is also published on MEDIUM, publication THE STARTUP