What’s a “copy”? + tips on how to write it

If you’re starting to learn about digital marketing or recently started to work with a marketing agency, you may have heard the word “copy” or “copywriting.” Easily explained, a “copy” is the text component we use on our publications or posts. There are two main types:

  • The image copy: This is the text that goes inside the photography, graphic art or video that you’re creating. 
  • The publication copy: This is the description, caption, or text that goes with the media you’ve decided to post. 

You can see them in action here:

The point of these texts is to persuade your clients to perform the desired action, such as buying a product, clicking a link, or filling a form. 

Even though the most common use of copy in digital marketing is in social media content, texts written for websites, apps, blogs, articles, ebooks, ads, e-mails, etc. are also considered “copies.” 

It looks like a simple task, but in reality, it requires an intermediate-advanced level of specialization to do it effectively. Most marketing agencies have “copywriters,” which are people specialized in this type of content. 

A copy can make or break a campaign, so here are a few tips for writing one: 

  • Define your target audience: Who are you talking to? Is it a college guy or a high-class, middle-aged woman who lives downtown? The more you get inside your client’s mind, the easier it will be to talk to them to catch their attention. 
  • Choose an objective: What do you want this marketing copy to compel someone to do? Do you want them to go to a website to make a purchase? Do you want them to sign up for more information? Or go into a physical location? Decide what you want out of your advertisement or marketing copy before you even start writing.
  • Keep it simple: Keep it within a few sentences so your clients don’t get lost in a sea of words. Follow the golden rule: one post, one idea. And the most important thing: make it scannable. Sometimes, when people see large paragraphs, they do a quick scan of keywords to decide if they’re interested in reading the whole thing. Keep this in mind while writing your texts. 
  • Make it attractive: Think about your client’s interests and use them to catch their attention while staying true to your brand’s values and personality. You can use analogies, jokes, or any rhetorical figure that helps you to catch their attention and build brand identity.

And remember, the key in digital marketing is to test, test, test. Take advantage of the low cost and high adaptability digital channels offer to test the tone, length, and writing style for your texts.