Copywriting is all around us, online, in the newspapers, in magazines, on the radio; it is a critical driver of success for many for profit, and not for profit organizations. Without realizing, for many of us, our first encounter with copywriting was as early as students progressing through our education. Think about persuasive writing; the aim is to convince a party to take up a specific point of view, or, put in other words, influence them to decide on a subject matter. To finally conclude on what copywriting is, in my opinion, copywriting is writing to convince a reader to take a specific call of action; this can be making a decision, purchasing a product or service, or attending an event.
There are three essential parts to copywriting: a subject matter, an audience, and a call to action.
Establishing your subject matter in copywriting
It is more common to refer to a subject matter in copywriting as a niche. I choose to use 'subject matter' since the focus is on the basics and beginner copywriters. It is vital to establish a defined subject matter in copywriting as your aim to influence the reader to take a call of action on an idea, a physical product, or a service. It should be the first step in copywriting; if there is no subject matter, there is nothing for the audience to decide on, indulge in, or purchase.
Establishing an audience in copywriting
After defining what your subject matter will be, you must then determine who your audience will be; your audience will likely be anyone who will be interested in whatever you have to sell. Although there may be millions of people in the market, not everyone is going to be keen on what you have on offer, so it makes sense to specifically target the group of people who will be most likely to agree on an idea, or purchase a product or service from you. Establishing your audience is a critical component of copywriting as it helps improves efficiency by weeding out an irrelevant audience.
Establishing a call to action in copywriting
You've spent considerable time developing your subject matter and determining your audience. You've written an excellent piece of copy about the best new thing in interior design, your reader has been intrigued and would like to to make a purchase or set up a consultation, but there is no way to reach out to you. If your audience is not able to request a quote, a meeting, or the icing on the cake, place an order, all your efforts will go to waste. If your audience cannot connect with you after reading your copy, then you are wasting valuable resources which can include time, effort, and very likely money.
There is more to copywriting than these three necessary components. It took me a while to understand copywriting, and even still, I am still learning. It can be overwhelming starting, and it is better to begin by understanding the basic concepts before you dive right in.