Specialization in Copywriting?

16 replies
Just curious about this because I see Copywriters who seem to specialize in specific formats like sales letters, email copy and others.
Are the copywriting "techniques" used very different for different formats?

Sorry if this sounds like a silly question as I am new to Copywriting.

thx
#copywriting #specialization
  • Profile picture of the author marciayudkin
    From where I sit, it's much more common for copywriters to specialize in serving a niche - B2B, health, financial, nutrition, pets, etc.

    But you're not usually good at everything. And some copywriters who notice a demand for emails or SEO copywriting or whatever and see that they're good at it, run with that.

    I stay away from email copywriting unless it's for another project I'm already involved in. It's not my cup of tea.

    Marcia Yudkin
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    • Profile picture of the author mellymags
      Originally Posted by marciayudkin View Post

      From where I sit, it's much more common for copywriters to specialize in serving a niche - B2B, health, financial, nutrition, pets, etc.

      But you're not usually good at everything. And some copywriters who notice a demand for emails or SEO copywriting or whatever and see that they're good at it, run with that.

      I stay away from email copywriting unless it's for another project I'm already involved in. It's not my cup of tea.

      Marcia Yudkin
      Very true Marcia. Most copywriters specialize in a niche. I'm working on niching down myself.
      Melissa
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  • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
    Good email copywriters are in demand. Over at the Cult of Copy Job Board, I see a lot of business owners looking for them.

    John, to answer your question... yes, some copywriters specialize by deliverable. VSLs, emails, webinars, and case studies are the ones I see the most.

    Alex
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  • Profile picture of the author helpinghand182
    I don't really believe copywriting needs to be niched down by industry such as health,finance,technology etc...

    Instead by it's end goal..

    -- A webinar campaign to encourage sign ups and attendance
    -- Welcome Campaigns to encourage onboarding
    -- Abondend cart sequences to secure conversions..

    ...etc
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  • Profile picture of the author haiderkamal123
    copywriting seems difficult to me. kindly guide
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    • Profile picture of the author DABK
      Take 2 steps to your left, lean forward.

      Or, why do you post these kind of things?

      help needed plz guide

      great ideas, keep it up

      any powerful ways to convince visitors ?


      Originally Posted by haiderkamal123 View Post

      copywriting seems difficult to me. kindly guide
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  • Profile picture of the author vovanfree
    well i will say it depends what you choose and what is the requirement of any firm. For blogging You just have to write google friendly content.You have to focus on certain niches like seo , blogging , health , fitness and weightloose etc. more will be the information more will be the content you will be able to write.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jame Danny
    As a copywriter is to first find the unique, compelling idea you are selling. Then to put that into words. That applies even when you’re just writing your own stuff.
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  • Profile picture of the author Cam Connor
    Niching is a good thing. And it's better to niche into a particular industry than a copywriting format. It's better to be an "IT Copywriter" for example, than an e-mail Copywriter.

    Why? Because when you're an E-mail Copywriter, and some company reaches out to you to write an auto-responder, chances are, they need other things as well... a landing page, ad copy, salesletters, etc.

    It's better to do ALL that stuff for a specific NICHE, and your main selling point can be "No one understands IT like me... IT Copywriting's a special breed, and unless someone's studied it in particular, they don't really have a clue how to do it".

    Then you position yourself as one of the very few people in the world who can actually do IT Copywriting. Most business owners assume that people who don't know their industry simply don't know how to write for it anyways, which is a major issue generalists run into.
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    • Profile picture of the author Mark Singletary
      Originally Posted by Cam Connor View Post

      Niching is a good thing. And it's better to niche into a particular industry than a copywriting format. It's better to be an "IT Copywriter" for example, than an e-mail Copywriter.
      2 questions for you:

      1. Wouldn't different formats require different skills? Yes, I know the underlying principles are the same. But writing a 12 page letter to get a click/sale vs. writing 300 characters to get the same effect would be two totally different worlds.

      2. What is wrong with being an IT email copywriter specialist? Yes you lose the sales letter work but you "lose" work by saying you do only IT too since you don't help plumbers.

      Mark
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      • Profile picture of the author Cam Connor
        Originally Posted by Mark Singletary View Post

        2 questions for you:

        1. Wouldn't different formats require different skills? Yes, I know the underlying principles are the same. But writing a 12 page letter to get a click/sale vs. writing 300 characters to get the same effect would be two totally different worlds.

        2. What is wrong with being an IT email copywriter specialist? Yes you lose the sales letter work but you "lose" work by saying you do only IT too since you don't help plumbers.

        Mark
        1) Not wildly different skills, no. Once you understand Copywriting, you should be able to easily apply it in different formats. Yes, there are certain things you need to learn about the nuances of writing in different specific formats, but there's no reason not to learn all or most of the major formats.Once you truly understand the fundamentals of Copywriting, learning the nuances of different formats is pretty quick. Also, I'm not saying you have to learn EVERY format. For example, I do all online stuff... I don't do offline flyers for example.Only offline thing I do salesletters because I already know how to do online salesletters, and they're fairly similar.

        2) Too niche. Chances are when an IT company needs a Copywriter, they're going to need a bunch of different copy in order to launch a new campaign. If you can do e-mail, and they find another IT Copywriter who can do everything, and they need a LP, ad copy, e-mails, salesletters... which one are they going to pick? Will they hire two separate Copywriters? One who will JUST do the e-mails, and one who'll do everything else? I doubt it. They'd prefer to hire just one. Also, have you ever tried to find IT e-mail Copywriting work? You can do it, but again, it's way too niche. You might have trouble finding work being that exclusive.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mark Singletary
    One of the reasons for my questions is that I've noticed that most IT (fill in the blank of most niches/markets) already have a website, a landing page, a "sales letter", ads they run, etc. Whether they are effective or not is another story.

    But one of the things they don't have, for the most part, is an email sequence. Most of them either don't use email at all or they send out a periodic newsletter that never gets a click.

    If all that is true and if someone could write compelling and persuasive emails, then it would seem that there would be no limits or anything such as "too niche" because it's an untapped opportunity across many/most niches. They could continue to use what they have now, for the most part, but could open up a new opportunity for growth and profits just by adding the email piece.

    Thoughts?

    Mark
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    • Profile picture of the author Cam Connor
      Originally Posted by Mark Singletary View Post

      One of the reasons for my questions is that I've noticed that most IT (fill in the blank of most niches/markets) already have a website, a landing page, a "sales letter", ads they run, etc. Whether they are effective or not is another story.

      But one of the things they don't have, for the most part, is an email sequence. Most of them either don't use email at all or they send out a periodic newsletter that never gets a click.

      If all that is true and if someone could write compelling and persuasive emails, then it would seem that there would be no limits or anything such as "too niche" because it's an untapped opportunity across many/most niches. They could continue to use what they have now, for the most part, but could open up a new opportunity for growth and profits just by adding the email piece.

      Thoughts?

      Mark
      If you see an opportunity there, take it. You can specialize in the whole cycle of creating a report (or other opt-in gift... you can outsource it if you want), creating the opt-in and implement it on their site with good opt-in copy, and doing the e-mail AR series. Those are some other things which go with it, which you'd probably have to take into account.

      I still wouldn't restrict yourself to JUST doing it in IT (for example)... BUT, if you wan to do it that way, and you see there's enough of a market for it in just one niche for you to make more than enough money, go for it.

      As a general rule of thumb, if you see the demand there in the first place, and you can fill it... then that's a good thing.

      Edit: Also, I'd add squeeze pages to that mix, but it's up to you.
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  • Yeah, it's really smart to specialize--especially if your niche is something technical where the clients are used to marketing people who don't have a clue about their service area.

    I specialize in tech and finance.

    I have this cut and paste snippet that I put into any proposal I send to any Silicon Valley type people I'm contacting. It's along the lines of "unlike 99% of copywriters out there, I live and breathe tech, I'm a pro at Wordpress, HTML5, CSS, PHP and Git." It's so ******* gravy it's unbelievable. I don't think I've ever not landed the job when I included that in a proposal.
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  • Profile picture of the author HandsomeGenius
    Originally Posted by John Cho View Post

    Just curious about this because I see Copywriters who seem to specialize in specific formats like sales letters, email copy and others.
    Are the copywriting "techniques" used very different for different formats?

    Sorry if this sounds like a silly question as I am new to Copywriting.

    thx
    Most of the basic principles are the same. So it's good to study what makes a great TV ad, a great print ad, a great sales letter, a great blog post and so on.

    But each medium has its own little quirks as well. A huge part of sales letters is getting customers to turn to the next page - so they use devices like making sure that each page ends mid-sentence, teaser copy about what's on the next page and so on. As a digital copywriter I've never had to deal with that. Email marketers live and die by their subject lines, web copywriters have to think about search snippets, and so on.

    I think the biggest thing that differs though is LENGTH. Copywriters for TV and radio ads have maybe 15 or 30 seconds to play with, because all the time has to be paid for. Sales letters, though, can go for as long as you like. Print ads can be somewhere in the middle.

    In digital, ideal copy length varies a lot between channels. Email readers tend to be in a hurry, so it's a good idea to be brief. With a lot of website copy, though, the customer is in a research phase - they want to spend time investigating their purchase before they click buy. They'll actually feel rushed or shortchanged by web copy that's too brief. The amount of web copy the customer wants to read varies greatly from product to product though. Generally, the more expensive something is, the longer you should hold the customer's hand.

    I've gotten heaps out of reading books by old school copywriters, even though pretty much all my work is web copy.
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    • Profile picture of the author Bill Jeffels
      Copywriting is copywriting. If it's a long form sales letter, emails or whatever. You're writing for the end result. That end result to be achieved is always the same.

      Some form of positive action to be taken. Preferably putting money in your pocket.

      And how is that done? It always returns to the basics of copywriting. Through having your prospects persuaded, compelled, enticed and convinced.

      And ultimately to take action. That's all the basics of copywriting.


      Bill

      .
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