How to Become A Copywriter

How to Become A Copywriter
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Copywriter: A Quick Look
Median Salary $55,940 or $26.89 per hour
Entry-level Education Bachelor’s degree
On-the-job training Minimum on the job training
Primary employers Publication companies (in-office or online) and self employed
Number of positions (U.S.) 129,100
Job Growth (2012-2022) 3% (Far slower than average)
New positions (2012-2022) 3,800

Copywriter Job Description:

How to Become A Copywriter
Source: Flickr

The copywriter job description includes researching and developing written content for a variety of mediums such as newspaper, magazine, music, screenplays, and more. A typical copywriter writes advertisements and songs for various publications and mediums. They must accurately appeal to their audience through their advertisements. Writers may work collaboratively with their customers or a creative development team. You can discover more about the typical copywriter job description here.

Copywriter Salary:

Data from the BLS indicates that the median annual copywriter salary as of 2012 was $55,940 or $26.89 per hour. The top 10 percent of these writers earned an annual salary of more than $117,860. The lowest earning 10 percent of a copywriter earned an annual salary of less than $27,770. Writers who worked in technical, professional, and scientific services earned the highest salaries that averaged $61,630 annually. Copywriters who worked information services earned the lowest annual salaries at $51,940. Learn more about the copywriter salary here.

How to Become a Copywriter:

At this point you might wonder how to become a Copywriter. To become a copywriter, you typically need a bachelor’s degree in a related field from an accredited college or university. Related courses of study may include communications, journalism, or English. Relevant work experience is typically important as well. If you’re interested, you can discover more about how to become a copywriter here.


Copywriter Job Outlook:

According to BLS data, the Copywriter Job Outlook is projected to grown by 3% for copywriters between the years 2012 to 2022. That rate of growth is much slower than the average rate of growth for all other professions. By the year 2022, it is anticipated that there will be approximately 129,100 copywriters in the United States. The following guide will tell you all about the copywriter job outlook. You can read more here.

Copywriter Salary:

The copywriter salary is slightly higher than the average of all other occupations. The latest data calculated at a national level by the BLS, indicates that the median annual copywriter salary as of the year 2012 was $55,940 (or $26.89 per hour). The median value is not the same as the value of the average salary. However, in some instances they may be close. The median value indicates the middle value of all the documented salaries for a copywriter in the United States. This means that half of all these writers in the United States earn a bit more than $55,940 per year, and the other half of these writers earned somewhat less.
  • The top 10 percent of writers earned an annual salary of more than $117,860.
  • The lowest earning 10 percent of writers earned an annual salary of less than $27,770.
The copywriter salary may vary somewhat as a result of the following influencing factors: the industry which employs them, level of work experience they have, and the type of employment they have secured (such as self-employed, employed for a company, etc.) Some writers earn bonuses based on their work and who employs them.
  • Copywriters who are late in their careers tend to earn the highest annual salaries
  • Those just starting out in the field tend to be the lowest paid- around $41,000
  • Writers who work in San Francisco, New York City, Boston, Denver, and Los Angeles tend to be the highest paid out of all the copywriters employed in the United States
Freelance writers have the most control over where they get their work. Their income tends to come from books and articles they write. They may complete freelance work on independent projects for publishing companies. However, it is not uncommon for freelance writers to have multiple sources of income due to the somewhat unreliable nature of freelance writing. Freelancer writers must typically supply their own health insurance and retirement funds unless they receive coverage through another job. The highest paying industry for a copywriter is technical, professional, and scientific services. Writers who work in this industry earned the highest annual salaries that averaged $61,630. Writers who worked information services typically earned the lowest annual salaries at $51,940.

How to Become a Copywriter:

Do you want to learn how to become a copywriter? Of course you do. That’s probably why you’re here reading this guide! To become a copywriter, you typically need to earn a bachelor’s degree in a related field from an accredited college or university. A bachelor’s degree in English, communications, marketing, or journalism is usually the most desired. A copywriter must typically acquire years of on-the-job training and experience before their work is ready for publishing. It is imperative for individuals interested in becoming a writer to have good knowledge about how to use computers and the internet, graphic design, social media, and more. Classes focusing on writing are typically part of a bachelor’s degree curriculum. These classes may include persuasive writing, technical writing, grammar, business writing, creative writing, and more. It may be beneficial for individuals interested in writing to gain experience while in high school or college. This experience can come from writing for a school newspaper, magazine, or radio station. This experience can be especially valuable when it comes time to apply for a job after college. Also, internship experiences while in college can provide students with invaluable experience that helps them when they venture into the workforce. Additionally, the internship experience looks good on a resume. Individuals can also gain experience and create their own portfolios by writing on the internet. This can be done on personal blogs or for various websites. Writing on the internet for websites could potentially lead to other job opportunities. As writers build reputations based on their writing, they tend to have more job opportunities and chances to advance within the field. Writers who work for a company may eventually be promoted to editors.

Copywriter Job Description:

The copywriter job description includes researching and developing written content for a variety of mediums such as newspaper, magazine, music, screenplays, and more. A typical copywriter job description contains the following job responsibilities:
  • Write advertisements for various publications and mediums (magazine, newspaper, television, radio, etc.) ensuring that the ad will appeal to the intended audience
  • Research topics to ensure their writing is accurate and based on factual information
  • Gather information on the topic and complete interviews as necessary
  • Complete and edit their writing and then submit it to editors for additional review
  • Work collaboratively with editors to make changes to and improve their writing so it can be published
Some job responsibilities vary depending upon who the writer is employed by. If they are self employed, their responsibilities may be slightly different (as they may have to seek out or appeal to companies to hire them as a freelance writer). Writers may need to work collaboratively with a creative team of marketing managers, creative and art directors, and others to create publications or advertisements. They may work collaboratively on a jingle or an advertisement for television, radio, or other mediums. A copywriter must thoroughly research the topics they are writing about to ensure the accuracy of the content. They must also accurately cite their resources. This establishes credibility among their readers and editors. Writers must be able to select the most interesting and pertinent topics to write about that will interest and appeal to their readers. Writers typically work regular hours Monday through Friday. However, if they are self employed they may set their own hours. The writer may need to be flexible with work hours when deadlines arise. If a writer does freelance work, he/she can work anywhere they have access to a computer and the internet.

Copywriter Job Outlook:

The copywriter job outlook is projected to grow by about 3% between the years 2012 through 2022. This is a good bit slower than the average growth of all other occupations. During the year 2012, there were around 129,100 employed copywriters working in the United States. It is expected that there will be around 132,900 positions for writers by the year 2022. Despite the slow growth of the occupation, it is anticipated that digital publications will continue to expand creating some demand for writers. It is anticipated that there will be strong competition for copywriting positions. Due to the high interest and limited opportunities, some writers will have to pursue other jobs either as freelance/ independent writers or with other types of employers. This may mean working for nonprofit organizations in their public relations department. Competition for jobs is expected to be especially high in magazine and newspaper companies as jobs are already declining in these settings. Opportunities like those may be few and far in between, so there will be additional competition among job seekers. Individuals who have experience with and knowledge of technology and the internet have a distinct advantage over job seekers who do not possess those skills and knowledge. Also, knowledge about technology should help individuals successfully publish their work in some form should they have an interest in doing so.


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