Free Resources for Copywriters

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Copywriter Resources

what is a copywriter

What is a copywriter? Copywriters write “copies”, persuasive words designed to elicit a response in the reader. Copywriting refers to writing advertising and marketing materials. Less means more in copywriting, since copywriters’ copy needs to convince the reader to act, with a limited quantity of words.

Index

    What are a Copywriter’s Competencies?
    Copywriter Resources in this Section
      Sales Copy Resources
      Website Copy Resources
        Website Copy
        Mission
        Value proposition
        Disclaimer
        Instructions
        Company Statement
        About us Page
        Launch Press Release
      Microcopy Resources
        Push Notifications
        Microblogs
        Call to Action
        Slogan
        Software Interface Copy
        Meta Tag
      Secondary SEO Microcopy
      Tertiary SEO Microcopy

What are a Copywriter’s Competencies?

As a copywriter you’ll be expected to have an extensive skill set that may not be obvious to outsiders. You may fall into the trap of thinking that becoming a copywriter is easy. You may think that you only need to know how to write passably well. Still, copywriting is much of a science as it is a craft.

At the very least you must be skilled (even if in a superficial way) in:

    Researching
    Target market segmenting
    Customer intelligence
    Customer psychology
    Rhetoric and prosody
    Persuasive writing
    Selling techniques
    Advertising
    Marketing theory and tools

Copywriter Resources in this Section

On this page, you will see a few elements of the type digital copywriters write. Please check the subcategories for detailed explanations on sales copy, website copy, and microcopy.

Sales Copy Resources

When talking about copy, as opposed to content, you are generally talking about relatively short copy that says the most with the less quantity of words. Yet, sometimes sales copy can be about big, meaty bad-boys to convey advantages, benefits, and valued propositions to your target. These are the kind of pages that take a lot of effort to create. A few are only one screen, but most are long-form content with a lot of different sections and elements that enrich it.

    Salesman’s book
    B2B sales
    Best sales books
    Squeeze page 
    Landing page
    Homepage
    Money page
    Lead generation page
    Capture page
    Silo page
    Sales letter
    Press kit
    Circular
    Magalog

Website Copy Resources

What is a copywriter to do, when tasked with writing copy for websites? He writes nuggets of content to plug into the website. These are portions of content that configure a larger message. From one-liners to medium-sized copy. It’s sad but everyone thinks that can do this. They actually do it, but their websites end up not getting them any sales. 

    Slogan
    Mission
    Value proposition
    Disclaimer
    Instructions
    Call to action
    Company statement
    About us page
    Launch press release
    Software interface copy

Website Copy

Website copy is snippets of content that are shorter or substantially different from what you would call “website content” proper. Website copy is definitely more sales-y than content. Another characteristic is that website copy has a higher grade of re-usability than content. Some of the website copy can be used many times in very different places, whereas website content gets only one use, because more than one version of long content, even if it’s published elsewhere, must not exist.

Mission

A short statement of your product’s or service’s reasons and objectives. I’ve seen uncountable mission statements that went too far. By going too far I mean when the mission statement is clearly corporate-oriented instead of crafted with the end-user in mind. That’s the wrong way to write a mission statement. It’s the kind of document, like the slogan, that many think they can write but in fact, they require to be backed by customer intelligence research and copywriting knowledge about its structure.

Value proposition

Copywriters are sometimes tasked with refining a client’s most valued proposition for publication. An MVP is short piece of copy stating what you’re bringing to the table to satisfy your customer’s needs or solve their problems. To which of your customers’ needs for gains it will cater. Which of your customer’s pains it will solve, or at least alleviate? 

Disclaimer

Disclaimers are quasi-legal portions of copy on a website that generally are published through a dedicated page, like a Terms of Service, Terms and Conditions, Terms of Use, Services Agreement, Addendum, Services Conditions, Privacy Policy, Rules, Regulations, etc.

Instructions

Instructions on how to use a product or service, or any other kind of instruction that needs to be published on a website. Many formats of copy could be included under the instructions category. The only thing to keep in mind is that around the 500 words mark copy stops being copy and becomes content.

Company Statement

There are several types of company statements. A very popular one is the financial statement, where a company gives some corporate narrative of itself and a report with hard data about its financial state. These kinds of statements are one of the primary tools a business has to attract investors.

About us Page

A snippet of copy with telegraphic statements about the bare-minimal facts of a company. They can include an abridged version of the mission statement, contact information, and similar primordial data about a product or service. It’s a place in a website that can be leveraged by copywriter copy to pitch something prospects by including a call to action section.

Launch Press Release

A short piece of copy, only one page, that is posted in different media outlets each time a website launches or each time an established website launches an important feature.

Microcopy Resources

Behind-the-scene gears for websites made up of content and copy. The microcopy goes into meta titles, meta descriptions, and similar data-driven components of websites that require content. This kind of copy is where the work of a professional copywriter shines. Complimentary materials of your business or service, like digital and material postcards and greeting cards.

    Meta tag
    Product packaging,
    SEO snippet
    Rich media
    Push notification
    Stationery
    Forms
    Social media post
    Microblog
    Postcard
    Greeting card

Push Notifications

If you need copy for push notifications, don’t believe that anyone can write them because they are negligible in size. The shortest the copy, the more optimized it has to be for the length in words to serve a purpose in an effective way. Given that push notifications are extremely short, it’s not easy to create an actionable copy in such a short space.

Microblogs

Microblogs are short pieces of copy or content that are meant to be shared as updates, or used as entries on microblog sites. A copywriter can make a great job of writing all the copy for a microblogging strategy. Like in the case of push notifications, microblogs have the potential to become difficult to produce when the space is limited and they must follow an SEO scheme.

I haven’t found a consensus on how many words a microblog is, or after what number of words it ceases to be a microblog and becomes a blog post. I would propose these lengths as a guideline:

1.~120 to ~300 words: microblog
2.140-280 words: SEO-optimized microblog
3.300+ words: blog post
4.600-1000 words: SEO-optimized blog post

Call to Action

oversimpliCTA Copy ExampleLuke Rosenberger211945042 86b9d4c01a o

Snippets of copy that need to be as perfect as possible. Perfection of a CTA means it’s going to be irresistible for the reader and that she or he will perform the most wanted action that the CTA invites him or her to perform.

Slogan

A slogan is a catchy phrase that you include in certain places and that customers will learn to associate with your brand. Since slogans are short, anyone can think that they can write one. The reality is quite different. Even if someone that is not a copywriter writes a slogan that sounds good, it is probable that it will benefit from a copywriter tweaking it.

A slogan that teaches the world about the soul of your brand is something that should be developed scientifically.

Your brand’s style and what the customer wants to hear are refined and made larger-than-life by means of a goals-focused or style-oriented rhetoric. A slogan encapsulates not just the promise of your brand and its fulfillment, but also how a brand is unique, or at least radically different, from its competitors.

Software Interface Copy

Software and applications sometimes need an instructional copy to include in their help, tutorial, and similar sections. A copywriter can help regain precious GUI real estate by optimizing its copy.

Meta Tag

Meta tags are the essential SEO copy. Believe it or not, meta tags are still important. While not as important as fifteen or twenty years ago, two of the three meta tags are still required. Except for the keywords tag, which is of dubious value, the meta tags serve a function in SEO. Roughly put, your title and description tags must have an appropriate copy to reinforce the website’s SEO.

Secondary SEO Microcopy

SEO snippets of copy, like the description of pages, their title, and other snippets, like for instance rich media copy, need to be filled for each page and post of a website to be SEO-optimized. This is to say that you must have a grand SEO scheme, covering the whole of the website, and on top of that, you must have a page SEO plan.

The individual on-page SEO of your website’s content must be customized for each page and post in particular, at the same time, the on-page SEO of the individual page must fit inside the grand SEO scheme of the whole website reinforcing the SEO of the whole site.

A mistake when filling the metadata of individual pages is overlooking the conflicts that the SEO tweaks you apply to it create in relation to the SEO optimization of other pages on your website.

Tertiary SEO Microcopy

Copy that is meant to build the content that you’ll use with web app integrations, like rich media, is another SEO copy that you shouldn’t overlook. While it may be less important than the two others it should be customized to be appropriate for each of the integrations in which the microcopy is going to play a part.

Take, as an example, website back-end plugins that add have fillable fields for Google’s rich snippets and or Facebook’s OpenGraph. One of these plugins may give the option to copy the page’s metadata verbatim to use a copy for those integrations. That is a nice feature to have, but at the same time is not a one-size-fits-all solution.

Image if you have different SEO strategies employing different keywords for your website and the social media channels for which you’ll use the integrations. In that case, copying the metadata of the page to the integrations isn’t good, since we want to employ the keywords of a different SEO strategy.

Media Attributions
Luke Rosenberg, It’s Your Choice CC BY SA 2.0

© Martin Wensley, 2022 —  Sales, Website, and Microcopy Copywriter Resources: What is a Copywriter