Phil McCumskey offers professional website and print copy writing in the United Kingdom, Europe & South Africa.
Phil's weekly blog on copywriting tips and tricks for aspiring content writers

Advertising copywriting – what it’s all about

The main objective of advertising copywriting is to get people so interested in a product or service that they compare, consider and ultimately buy it. Words, in the form of a well told story, achieve this by conveying feelings and emotions that prompt people to purchase a product or buy into a brand. An advertising copywriter needs to be a highly creative and imaginative person, possessing excellent written and interpersonal skills.

 

It also helps if he or she is able to work well within a team and can cope with the pressure of deadlines. A keen eye for detail, an interest in popular culture and an awareness of new advertising trends is also a must.

In advertising, wordslead to action – nothing is as specific and more action-inducing than suggesting that people ‘call now’, or‘try us for free’, or ‘buy now stocks are limited’, and so on. Advertising copywriting is all about generating action. Images make people ‘feel’ and ‘experience’, but carefully crafted words make them take‘action’.

A skilled copywriter may come up with a memorable headline or a head-turning tweet in order to get people to take action. Or, like a storyteller, he or she might craft something highly emotional. Either way, words are at the centre of it all.

Advertising copywriters craft copy for above-the-line advertising, such as cinema and television, interactive media, outdoor posters and radio, as well as below-the-line advertising, which takes the form of leaflets, brochures, press releases and direct mail.

Copywriters will normally have a one-on one with a client to take down the brief before coming up with original copy ideas. These ideas can be in the form of slogans, straplines, body copy for print, as well as radio and television jingles and radio scripts.

Advertising copywriting involves regular meetings with account executives to discuss a client’s requirements, the brainstorming of ideas and concepts with other creative team members, the writing of various copy options which are then presented to the client, modifying the copy to the satisfaction of the client, and finally overseeing the production of the print, television or radio advertisement.