There are 129,100 writers in the United States, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Hiring a copywriter from that army of qualified writers might seem tougher than finding a needle in a haystack. This small army of wordsmiths must serve an enormous number of small businesses in the U.S. – 28 million in all. Where on earth will you find that one writer or group of writers that truly understands your small business and the customers you serve?
Hiring a copywriter that conveys a consistent and positive image for your small business is essential. If you are like most small business owners, you want to promote your brand in a way that builds a large customer base and improves sales. Engaging and polished copy is critical to the success of your business, and you want to find the perfect copywriter who can convey your company message and boost your bottom line.
Fortunately, there are steps you can take to ensure the copywriter you hire promotes your brand your way.
Steps to Hiring a Copywriter that Speaks in Your Brand’s Voice
Whether you already have a writer on staff or you are considering hiring a copywriter, take steps to ensure your writer conveys the values and standards of your brand in a clear and consistent way.
Start by creating a brand message
Brand messaging is about using language that embodies the values of your brand. Your brand’s message makes your company stand out from the crowd. It captures the attention of your most qualified prospects and compels them to take action. Some well-known examples include Nike’s “Just Do It,” “Eat Fresh” by Subway, and Walmart’s “Save Money, Live Better.”
Don’t have a catchy slogan or brand message? No problem! Just determine the problems that your product solves and come up with one or two words that accurately describe the most important values of your business, such as speedy or compassionate, to use as a brand message.
Provide your brand’s message to all potential copywriters
Bring your brand’s message to the front and center of all your communications with potential copywriters. Look for copywriters who seem excited about your brand’s message and convey similar values in their responses. Avoid copywriters who seem reluctant to express your brand’s message or unable to capture your company’s “voice” in their replies.
Create a detailed style guide for all writers to follow
A style guide defines the standards for any company documents that a copywriter may create. Style guides help create consistency from project to project and even writer to writer. Make sure your style guide contains keywords, mottos and catch phrases, and narrative voice (I, we; you, yours; him, his). The style guide should also provide a list of topics, reference websites and competitor websites to avoid.
Provide this style guide to potential writers and discuss the contents with them. Pursue copywriters who can demonstrate that they actually read the style guide and who seem enthusiastic about adhering to the standards you set.
These steps make hiring a copywriter to promote your brand easier. Don’t give up on finding qualified writers to create content for your small business – just plan ahead with brand messaging, keywords and a definitive style guide.
Lynn H has been a professional writer, providing exceptional content online and offline, for more than a decade.