As a savvy business owner working with words, you’ve probably asked yourself: ‘what’s the difference between content writing and copywriting?’
Frankly, they sound pretty much the same and, unless you’re a writer by trade, it might seem like they are the same. But the thing is, content writing and copywriting couldn’t be more different.
Sure, there’s some overlap when it comes to the sheer skills involved with content writing and copywriting. But each area has its little specialities and peculiarities that make it shine.
So, what’s the difference between content writing and copywriting?
Content writers focus on the bottom line, nitty-gritty deets and give you the answers when you need them. AKA, absolute legends when you’re in a rush.
A good content writer creates clean and fresh content that teaches you a thing or two. Content writers are familiar with what they write and know how to answer the questions their readers are asking. To create useful content suited to their readers, content writers have to be creative, adaptable, and informative.
Content writers are legendary communicators and are key to opening up your world to the rest of our world. They read, research, and fight for the right to party write.
Content writing is hard work, but it pays off. One of my favourite examples of content writing comes from the Urban List. Their brand voice is distinct and consistent, and their words just glow. They know who their audience is and keep their site jam-packed for the right readers.
They tailor their content to fit their audience, and never pretend to be who they’re not. They embrace themselves for the legends they are.
Sure, content writers may dish out the details, but copywriting is where the magic happens. It’s the impromptu guitar solo, the water on the drums at the stickiest of gigs. Copywriting adds zest.
It’s a copywriter’s mission to get you excited, to amp up already stellar products enough for you to see the glitter in the goods, too. A good copywriter is creative and different; they look past dominant paradigms and flip them on their heads. They tell killer stories and hit all the right buttons to help readers take the leap.
Good copywriting is everywhere. It’s in product descriptions that lead to impulse buys, ‘about’ pages that give you goosebumps. Copywriters look at the relationships between brands and people and focus on building them to be stronger, more effective, and less headache-y.
But it’s not all a bed of roses. Good copywriting means diving deep into what a brand really is, looking at everything they are, then taking all that goodness and turning it into some sweet slammin’ copy.
Burt’s Bees are killing it with their copy and never shy away from a sneaky double entendre (or two).
They know their customers like the back of their hand and use it to their absolute advantage. They’re empowering, perceptive, and natural – the spitting image of their stellar customers.
So, let’s cut to the chase:
The difference between content writing and copywriting is ultimately, style. Content writing is designed to inform and increase discoverability. Copywriting is designed to make the reader feel, then persuade them to take action.
Words can be electrifying, exciting, and downright fun. Whether content writing or copywriting, there’s no downside to writing captivating copy. After all, it’s the job of a writer to spark an interest in a reader.
But as different as they are, it’s easy to get them confused. Content writing and copywriting both educate, answer questions, and connect with readers. Both work within the realms of sharing information, but in different ways.
Knowing the difference between content writing and copywriting is important. It means knowing what you’re looking at, and what you need for your business.
To keep it short and sweet, copywriting is the icing on the freshly-baked content writing cake.
It’s a content writer’s job to inform, and a copywriter’s job to enthuse and persuade. This article is an example of content writing. I’m writing content for you, you’re (hopefully) learning a thing or two, and we’re all (again, hopefully) having a rockin’ time.
In a nutshell, content writers keep readers coming back to a website. But it’s the copywriters that get them there in the first place. Content writing and copywriting are both are as important as one another, but it’s good to know the difference.
Your friendly, neighbourhood copy tour manager. Here to help ambitious business rock stars like you rock your copy at every stage of your biz road trip.
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