As every English Language graduate knows, once your dreams of moving to a blustery cottage by the sea and penning some of the century’s best poetry like a kind of hipster Dylan Thomas fall through, there’s no finer vocation than copywriting. It’s creative, it’s interesting, everyone always seems to think you’re a copyrighter and you must be awfully dull. Don’t turn your nose up at our pink hair and ‘thoughts notebooks’ yet though, because we copywriters are a special breed. Masters of small conversation. Pros of pub quizzes. Expert drafters of eloquent break up texts. There might not be a lot we know, but there’s seven things we definitely do know.
1. The Internet is Deep, Dark and Full of Lies
In our ongoing bid to present as an undeniable source of knowledge, facts and stats; we’re tasked with delving deep into the internet’s archives. No area is too niche, and no subject too small – we’re going to get to the blood and guts of the topic, and present it beautifully in a blog or stat-laden infographic. This has taught us to grow wary of false online prophets promising truths and facts – asking ourselves questions about their authenticity. How reliable are these sources? And where are their facts and figures coming from?
Already warned against the dangers of relying upon Wikipedia and its notoriously editable copy, we copywriters have developed a sixth sense for online lies and nonsense. Sniffing out notable fabrications before committing them to our clients’ copy, our research may not be the most glamorous part of our job, but it’s perhaps the most important.
2. The Weird Hand Massage to Cure Typing Cramp
The occupational hazard of the copywriter, hand cramp is a very real threat to the modern wordsmith. Unless you secure a job doing short copy, then I imagine the major hazard is leaning too far back in your chair and tipping over.
Apparently I’m the only one in the office that this still happens to because I’m such a baby, but all copywriters know what I’m talking about. After an intense morning of speed typing, your hands just don’t want to play ball anymore and reward you with an intense pain in the heel of your hand. Never fear though, all copywriters know that placing your other thumb on the ‘thumb fat’ of your hand and giving it a little circular massage should sort that right out.
3. Leave Your Pride at Home
In your Dylan Thomas days, you might have turned your nose up at recommending Disney World as the ultimate trip of a lifetime. Now you’re a copywriter, however, it’s time to leave your pride at the door and wax lyrical about the saccharine joy of meeting a bored teenager dressed as Mickey Mouse in the flesh.
If copywriters were asked to be entirely honest with every blog, press release, review, video, graphic and news scoop we covered, then nothing would ever stay on topic. The internet would just be (even more) full of lengthy diatribes about the injustice of Freaks and Geeks being cancelled after just one season, when How I Met Your Mother stretched to over 200 episodes.
4. Taking Criticism Well (And Extra Salty)
Everyone’s writing is personal, and after 16 years of studying the English language you might have begun to think that you know best about where the commas should go. Think again, my sweet copywriting Padawan. Every copywriter understands that the client knows best and there’s no point in sulking or taking it personally. Take their criticism with a pinch of salt, and let them pop a few extra commas in if they like. A good piece is a piece that pleases.
We also know it’s important to diplomatically fight our corner sometimes, when we believe the client’s judgement may be slightly off. By diplomatically fight our corner, I mean ask the endlessly more charming account managers to represent our concerns and feelings.
5. Snacks Are Brain Food
There’s only one way to keep turning out original, creative, accurate copy all day long, and that way is Monster Munch. The tart, pickley flavour will zing through your taste buds and startle your brain awake, while the extra chewing required by their unique shape will return the blood flow to the upper extremities.
And to help the digestion of this high content of maize, corn starch and organic flamin’ hot flavouring, no copywriter’s diet is complete without about 11 pints of water a day. Munching on the monsters’ finest whilst typing a few hundred words a minute is thirsty work, and hydration is king.
6. It’s Nothing Like Mad Men
Much to everyone’s endless chagrin, we aren’t allowed a whisky decanter in the Banc office, not even on a Friday. The closest we get to the smoky, sexy, stylish offices of Mad Men is a beer at the end of the week.
Also, unlike Mr Draper from Mad Men, our copywriting team are more likely to be found watching an episode of Bake Off after work than pursuing an endless stream of beautiful brunettes.
7. We Know a Little Bit About Literally Everything
Over the months and years, the endless articles about Morocco, microbiology, mustard recipes, and monster truck construction start to embed themselves in our brains, and eventually we become the font of all knowledge. Never argue with us, we’ve read all the government papers (twice), can recite all the statistics, and are used to giving our opinion as fact. You have been warned.
For a charitable donation, you can recruit us to join your pub quiz team in the Greater Manchester area.
If your site is lacking a little wordsmithery and would benefit from a team of experienced copywriters casting their eye over proceedings, why not get in touch with the Banc content team on firstname.lastname@example.org?