Copywriter vs. Content Writer: Which One Do You Need for Your Brand?

June 23, 2023

Unless you’re a professional writer, you may think all writing is the same. But writing is a nuanced craft, especially when it comes to promoting a business. Significant differences exist between copywriters and content writers, even if their skill sets overlap.

The difference comes down to the type of content each writer produces. While both aim to engage a particular target audience, one writer drafts content focused on advertising and branding and the other creates educational posts to build trust and engagement.

As a business owner, you might be considering content creation as part of your overall marketing strategy to build brand awareness, broaden your reach, and boost sales. And chances are, you’re wondering which type of writer you need to meet your goals successfully.

Here, we’ll break down the differences between a copywriter vs. content writer and share some insights on how each content creator can help you take your brand to the next level.

What Is Copywriting?

Copywriting aims to promote and sell products or services as part of a marketing campaign. A copywriter creates short-form copy that explicitly promotes a brand — think taglines, sales copy, print ads, direct mail ads, video scripts for ads, product descriptions, and website landing pages (aka promotional web pages) with convincing calls to action.

Copywriters are part of a brand’s marketing strategy to reach potential customers and persuade them to buy. They must often create catchy taglines, slogans, and social media posts to drive engagement and boost sales.

For example, here are some memorable taglines that might be familiar to you:

  • Apple: “Think different.”
  • Nike: “Just do it.”
  • Disneyland: “The happiest place on Earth.”
  • Capital One: “What’s in your wallet?”
  • L'Oreal: “Because you're worth it.”

A good copywriter instantly grabs the attention of potential customers with punchy copy that elicits an immediate, emotional response.

What Is Content Writing?

The purpose of content writing is to inform, educate, and instruct. Content writers are integral to content marketing as they create informative pieces about a company’s offerings, industry, and related topics.

Most content writing is long-form and educational in nature. Rather than explicitly promoting a particular product or service, content writers build trust by offering valuable content the target audience seeks. It is through this quality content that brand awareness develops and ultimately convinces potential customers to buy.

The term “content” is far-reaching and can span everything from written articles to podcasts and videos. Content writers typically produce long-form content like blog posts, email newsletters, and case studies. They might also draft a variety of marketing materials like whitepapers, press releases, and even magazine features.

A good content writer will produce authoritative works that contain a great deal of detail and are journalistic in nature. Content writers are adept at researching and backing up claims using evidence from reliable sources.

Content writers usually create articles that are about 1,000 to 2,000 words — although they can be longer — and often work with a blogging schedule to stay on track.

How Does SEO Fit Into Copywriting and Content Writing?

Copywriter vs. content writer: Young man writing at his work desk

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving a website’s ranking on search engine results pages (SERPS). And as you might know, more people are shopping online than ever before. As such, business owners — whether they are strictly online or have a brick-and-mortar — must reach potential customers where they are.

SEO copywriting can help with short-term digital marketing efforts while a content writer trained in SEO best practices can create great content over the long term. With content writing in particular, each piece of content you publish builds brand authority and trust by offering in-depth coverage about your niche and how your product or service solves your target audience’s pain points.

But how do you ensure your intended audience sees your content in the first place? The key is to create a content strategy that boosts your website's ranking. You can start by conducting keyword research to identify what your target audience is searching for and then plan your content around those topics.

For instance, if you’re an ecommerce site that sells tea and tea products, you’ll want to focus on keywords (aka topics) related to what you offer. There are plenty of free keyword research tools to help you map out your plan.

In short, when it comes to a copywriter vs. a content writer for your SEO efforts, think of it in terms of running. Copywriting is a sprint whereas content writing is a marathon.

Copywriter vs. Content Writer: The Choice Is Yours

Team working together to improve business

When comparing a copywriter vs. content writer, it’s important to understand the similarities and differences. Both create content to connect with a specific target audience and raise brand awareness. And both aim to increase traffic or conversion rates to meet your objectives. That said, some distinguishing factors exist between them.

Copywriting typically focuses on short-term wins with succinct pieces of content that urge people to make a purchase. On the other hand, content writing involves long-form content that takes a long-term view of a company’s goals and slowly convinces its audience to convert.

Having both types of writing as part of your content strategy can be a worthwhile investment. But it’s not simply about blogging and writing copy. First, you must ensure you have a solid content strategy framework to outline your business goals — including your SEO strategy — and the types of content you’ll create to reach those goals.

Lean on the Experts to Take Your Content to the Next Level

Whether you’re a B2C startup or an established B2B brand, hiring freelance writers can help you reach your marketing goals and boost your bottom line. To that end, the Writer Finder will save you time and effort when you’re ready to hire outstanding freelance writers.

Our extensive database of vetted professional writers spans multiple industries. We have you covered whether you’re looking for the best content writers to build out your blog, want someone to craft engaging posts for your social media channels, or need to hire a technical writer to draft how-to manuals and instructional guides.

We’ve worked with hundreds of brands and know what it takes to find top talent to deliver SEO-driven, on-brand content that generates results. Get your writers now — simply fill out the Writer Finder form and we’ll find you the perfect match within three business days.

And if you’re looking to have your entire content strategy managed by a team of seasoned SEO strategists and content marketers, learn more about Growth Machine’s suite of services that can help your site rank higher on search engines and reach more potential customers.