Struggling to decide if you should be a copywriter or a content writer? Well, you have come to the right place.
The confusion between copywriting and content writing, given the similarities in the role, is real and you are not alone who doesn’t know the clear difference between the two.
Yes, copywriting and content writing are both used in digital marketing and are equally important for a business, but there are some significant differences that a freelancer or someone aspiring to build a career in writing needs to know.
Difference Between Content Writing and Copywriting
The writing styles used to write copy and content are very different. Copy is a little more crisp, short, and persuasive than content, whereas content written in content writing is more on the guiding, informing side. Let’s get into the differences one by one for a better understanding.
The Purpose of Writing
First of all, as a writer, you need to understand that the purpose of writing a copy is very different from the content. A copy is written to persuade the reader to take action in favour of the business you are writing the copy for. Whereas, content writing involves writing content that is informative and helps the reader understand why the services of the business you are writing for are important and how they can get benefited from the same.
The Writing Style
Because the purpose of writing copy and content is different, their writing styles differ as well.
A copy is supposed to be attractive, persuasive, short, and crisp. Whereas content is usually written in a simple, basic manner so that the reader can learn, understand, and take action if they feel like it.
Both the writing styles are persuasive but the sales-y attribute in content writing is extremely subtle.
Role and Importance of SEO
Are you familiar with the importance of search engine optimization in digital marketing? If you have been writing blogs for someone or have considered talking to a content writer to know more about the job role and responsibilities you would know how important SEO is. For content, it is very important, and having decent knowledge about it can help you stand out from the crowd of content writers. It is a highly sought-after skill or knowledge that has become a prerequisite for content writers.
For a copy, SEO is not as important but, of course, having basic knowledge will not hurt you. Instead, it may increase your lead conversion rate.
Expectations (From the Writer)
From a copywriter, a business would expect lead conversion and traffic in a very short span of time. That is how copy is supposed to work. It should be so persuasive that the reader almost immediately considers taking action. The more leads your copy converts, the better copywriter you are.
In the case of content writing, all you are expected to do is write good quality, informative, SEO-friendly content that attracts the audience.
The traffic and lead generation for content writing is a long-term goal and when your content meets the mentioned requirements, it is not difficult to generate decent traffic for the business
Pay Scale (What a Writer Can Expect)
Yep, copywriters and content writers are paid differently. Of course, depending on the content and contribution to the business, they should be paid differently as well.
A copywriter can expect more money for less number of words than a content writer. The reason behind this is that the copy benefits the business A LOT. and for a copy well written, a copywriter can demand more because they know the business will be benefitting immensely through it.
So, for instance, for a copy ad of around 200-500 words, a copywriter can easily charge INR 1000.
But for a content writer, in India especially, the rates are pretty low. The reason behind that is that aspiring content writers readily agree for less than what they should be charging.
So, for writing an article of 1000 words, a content writer should get at least INR 1000 but you can easily find writers getting INR 250-300 for that kind of content.
Should You be a Content Writer or a Copywriter?
Coming back to you, I hope you understood the difference between copywriting and content writing. Now, let’s see what YOU should be writing, shall we?
So, tell me (or yourself) one thing, do you love writing? Of course, you do, what kind of question is that? Now answer a few questions to figure out what writing style you should pursue.
- Do you like writing long-form content or short-form content?
- Do you think your writing style is persuasive?
- Are you just starting to write or have you already worked with someone?
- Do you like writing paragraphs to your friends when they need assistance?
Well, if you are just starting and your answer to all these questions is a yes, I would suggest you start with content writing. Unless you have already written content and know how basic content writing exactly works in the digital marketing world, you should start from content writing. The reason behind this is that content writing is relatively easier.
Your chances of failing and messing things up or getting scared because you don’t know something are way less in content writing than if you directly step into copywriting.
Writing long-form content is always easier for a writer than writing a copy that covers every essential information in limited words.
I am not saying you shouldn’t get into copywriting. Copywriting is one of the most promising career options for writers and it is something we all should eventually get into, but, “eventually”.
Content writing and copywriting go hand in hand. You start by writing content and then with time copywriting comes naturally to you.
So, if you are still confused about what to do, go ahead, take a course on how to become a highly paid content writer, and start your career as a content writer already.
Copywriting and content writing are different from each other only because one is written with limited words and the goal behind it is to make the reader take an action whereas the other writing style focuses on educating the reader so that they understand why they need to take action.
Writing a copy is comparatively difficult from writing content because content writing requires basic writing skills and writing long-form content is easier for aspiring writers who are just stepping into the content marketing world. If you are an aspiring writer who wishes to start a side hustle in content writing, you should consider taking a course that can help you start your career on the right note. Hustlepost Academy offers a course on freelance content writing that can help you build your content writing career on the side as a professional writer and it also teaches you how to find clients.