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Copy Writers Career

Career Description

A Copy Writer is a very specialized type of writer. They prepare advertising copy for use in publications or for broadcasting and they write other materials to promote the sale of a good or service. They often must work with the client to produce advertising themes or slogans and may be involved in the marketing of the product or service.

Common Work Tasks

  • Write advertising copy for use by publication,  broadcast or internet media to promote the sale of goods and services
  • Discuss with the client the product, advertising themes and methods, and any changes that should be made in advertising copy
  • Consult with sales, media and marketing representatives to obtain information on product or service and discuss style and length of advertising copy
  • Edit or rewrite existing copy as necessary, and submit copy for approval by supervisor
  • Write to customers in their terms and on their level so that the advertiser’s sales message is more readily received
  • Write articles, bulletins, sales letters,  speeches, and other related informative, marketing and promotional material
  • Review advertising trends, consumer surveys, and other data regarding marketing of goods and services to determine the best way to promote products
  • Develop advertising campaigns for a wide range of clients, working with an advertising agency’s creative director and art director to determine the best way to present advertising information
  • Investigate product characteristics such as the product’s safety and handling qualities, its market appeal, how efficiently it can be produced, and ways of distributing, using and maintaining it.
  • Participate in new product planning or market research, including studying the potential need for new products

Other Job Titles

Copy Writers are also known by other titles, including:

  • Technical Writers
  • Editors
  • Publication Assistants
  • Copy Editors

Education,  Training, and Experience

Education and Training
  Some employers look for a broad liberal arts background, while others prefer to hire people with degrees in communications, journalism, or English. For those who specialize in a particular area, such as fashion, business, or law, additional background in the chosen field is expected.  

Experience
  Copy writers must be able to express ideas clearly and logically and should enjoy writing.  Creativity, curiosity, a broad range of knowledge, self-motivation, and perseverance also are valuable. Writers and editors must demonstrate good judgment and a strong sense of ethics in deciding what material to publish. In addition, the ability to concentrate amid confusion and to work under pressure often is essential.

Salary

The median annual salary for a Copy Writer is $51,000. The top 10 percent earn more than $100,000, and the lowest 10 percent earn less than $27,000.  Median earnings in the industries employing the largest number of copy writers are:

  • Newspaper, Periodical, Book, and Directory Publishers - $48,200
  • Advertising and Related Services- $65,190
  • Radio and Television Broadcasting - $54,660
  • Business, Professional, Labor, Political, and Similar Organizations - $58,820
  • Motion Picture and Video Industries - $95,250

Job Outlook

  • 2006-2016 Employment growth:  13%
  • Number of new jobs created 2006-2016: 17,000
  • Employment 2006 : 135,000
  • Employment 2016:  153,000
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