Have you been using these two interchangeably? You’re doing your business a disservice.
Copywriting and content writing are two very different skill sets, but both are essential for a successful marketing strategy.
Copywriters are responsible for creating effective copy—the text on your website that converts browsers into buyers. These are the words you see in digital ads, billboards, emails, and more.
Content writers, on the other hand, create valuable content that engages and informs your audience. Long and short form blogs, ebooks, and whitepapers are often written by content writers.
So what is the difference between copywriting and content writing? Let’s take a closer look.
The Basics on Copywriting vs. Content Writing
Understanding the basics of copywriting vs. content writing is the first step in determining which will best fit your business needs.
Copywriting is all about persuasion. Copywriters are experts at using words to get people to take a desired action—whether that’s purchasing an item, signing up for an email list, or downloading an ebook.
Copywriting is often written in shorter form, making more of an impact in fewer words. Additionally, copywriting often has a shorter life , being used for a specific campaign or goal.
This ad from Yeti is an example of copywriting. It’s short, succinct, and has a strong message that speaks directly to its target audience.
Content writing is more about education and building relationships. Content writers produce content to help readers better understand a topic, solve a problem, or make a decision.
Content writing is most often in blog form, meaning it’s at least 500 words, with the ideal length ranging from 2,100 to 2,400 words. It has a longer life, often finding a permanent home on the blog or resource page of a website.
The above example is one of my posts from the Neil Patel blog. This is one of the most recognized forms of content writing, with 7.5 million blog posts published every day. This particular piece was written to help marketers understand how Google’s Featured Snippets work and the best ways to rank for them.
When you think of content writing and copywriting, what images come to mind? We often remember copywriting because of its use in ads and content writing when we’ve learned something from an article.
The goals of these two types of writing differ quite a bit, often changing the intent of the words. The copywriter’s ultimate goal is to get the reader to take action, while the content writer’s goal is to build trust and credibility with the reader.
Which is Better for Your Business: Copywriting or Content Writing?
The answer to this question depends on your business goals.
If you want to increase sales or get more leads, copywriting is the way to go. If you want to build relationships with your audience and establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry, then content writing is the better option.
Great writing is the foundation of both copywriting and content writing. The key is to figure out which one will help you achieve your specific business goals.
The Skills Behind Content Writing vs Copywriting
The skills required for copywriting and content writing are quite different.
Copywriters need to be experts at persuasion, sales, and marketing. They need to understand human psychology and be able to use words to influence reader emotions and drive them to take action. Learn more about how to write compelling copy with my guide to copywriting.
Some of the common types of writing copywriters create include: