How to brief a copywriter

Last time I promised a list of things you need to tell your prospective copywriter to get the best out of them. Well here it is:

  1. What is the copywriting for? – Brochure, website, advertisement,  blog etc.
  2. Is it for a product or a service?
  3. Every possible relevant detail about the product or service, including but not limited to, what it is, what it does, how you sell it – direct, party plan, MLM etc., what it costs, what colours and sizes it comes in, what its benefits are, why it is better than your competitors’ products and services.
  4. What is your unique selling proposition? What sets you and your product or service apart from everyone else?
  5. What is your target market? – the more detail here the better
  6. If the copy is for a website then who is going to research your keywords?
  7. What are the keywords?
  8. What keyword density and what length of copy are you looking for?
  9. How many pages do you need written?
  10. Do you have a deadline? What is it?
  11. What style of writing are you looking for? – formal, casual, folksy, cool etc.
  12. Provide information about you and your company such as how long you have been in business, where you are located, where you can ship to etc.
  13. What is your budget? – this is often a contentious issue but it pays to be upfront about it. Most reputable copywriters will tell you whether they can do the work within your budget or not and won’t “pad it out” so that it takes more that it should. What’s more it saves both your time and theirs  to know at the outset if they feel they cannot work within your budget.

I hope this list helps. It isn’t exhaustive but it should help both you and your copywriter to understand the project better.

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