An Honest Day in the Life of a Copywriter
The fact I can say that I write for a living has my seven-year-old-self squealing with delight. However, while the life of a copywriter may seem glamorous, the day-to-day isn’t always high-flying success and constant moments of inspiration.
Often, I have to figure out how to say the same thing about 100 different ways and trust me, that’s no easy task.
So, after being asked what my day-to-day looks like as a copywriter, I thought I’d write an honest review.
I would like to say that I get up at 5am, do 30 minutes of yoga, drink green tea, and tidy up the house before leaving for work. But that would not fit with my honest day-in-the-life summary, so instead I aim to be sat at my desk by 8.40.
Of course, on Mondays, that is a lot harder than it looks.
Unlike the rest of the office, I don’t start my morning with a coffee. I hate the taste. I know, there’s something seriously wrong with me – you’re not the first to think it! So, while I may take a little while longer to wake up than the coffee drinkers sat around me, I try to console myself that at least I’m not drinking down a hot black liquid multiple times a day. That’s definitely a good thing, right?
Although I don’t officially start until 9am, it’s always good to arrive a little earlier so that I have time to settle in and take a deep breath before opening my schedule.
My first priority is to always look through my emails and check in with any clients I am currently in communication with. This is a great opportunity to keep in contact and make sure there is nothing I have missed.
It’s also a great excuse for a follow-up phone call and a chat!
I open my LinkedIn and Twitter accounts to ensure they are up-to-date and to check on my followers. It’s great to have a solid following on social media and checking in on my accounts every morning helps my numbers steadily grow.
I also use Twitter to find great guest posting opportunities under the #journorequest that I can use for link-building or growing a client’s audience reach.
Basically, working in digital marketing means I need to be savvy with digital stuff and that includes being active and contactable on my social media accounts. It’s not very difficult and who doesn’t enjoy a good scroll through social media in the morning?
Before starting what I’ve been assigned for the day, I always check the editing folder. All the articles I write must be placed in here before publication as this allows my team to go through and edit my work.
It may surprise you to know that my work is not always grammatically-correct and I do, occasionally, make some laughable mistakes. So, another pair of eyes to correct those human errors is a must!
I will usually spend the next hour or two working through all the edited articles and updating them. This includes correcting mistakes, expanding on points, and adding images and links.
Once this has been done, I alert my team and the articles can be published.
Spend some time wondering how I managed to write ‘your’ instead of ‘you’re’ in the last article I wrote and whether it disqualifies me from ever become a famous author.
Stare into the abyss.
It’s time for a quick snack. Staring into the abyss tends to make me hungry. So, while I enjoy my snack break like a child, I take to the internet and share the recently published articles on each client’s social media account.
I find this a great way to keep each audience up to date with the latest news in their industry. It can also be an effective way of achieving more shares, extra clicks, and perhaps even a few conversions.
What time is it? Surely, it’s nearly lunchtime. If I drank coffee, this would be the time I’d pour myself another cup. But I don’t, as we’ve already discovered.
It is time to actually start the work I’ve been assigned for the day. Every article I write starts with the first step, keyword research. You can find out more about keyword research and why it’s important here.
I quite enjoy the keyword research stage, as it allows me to pick a topic to write about, work on some clickable headlines, and then discover what others have been searching.
It turns out that we all type some pretty interesting things into the Google search bar, such as can you die from being tickled, funny cat videos, and can you eat a rooster…there really is some gold on the internet.
I sift through various searches related to my article, make a list of these keywords, and create a list of eye-catching headings for my article (or at least I try to).
The time has come for my well-deserved lunchbreak. This is a great opportunity for me to get away from my computer screen for a bit. Working at Bamboo Nine, I am lucky because the whole city of Brighton is literally on the office doorstep. So, I tend to shop, head to one of the local parks for a walk, or read a book.
My lunchbreak is my time. It helps me re-centre and even gives me the chance to nap if I want to.
The afternoon has officially begun, and it is back to work. After lunch I often feel a little sluggish at the thought of returning to my desk and it takes a little while to get my brain back into gear.
One thing I find helpful to do is call the client I am writing for and ask them any questions I have about my article research. This helps ensure I am clear on all points and actually know what I am talking about.
The writing time of day has finally arrived. At this point, I detest interruption. That may seem like a strong word, but if you’re a writer and you’ve ever been interrupted midsentence, you will know how frustrating it can be.
So, to avoid any social interaction, I plug in my headphones and get to work typing. Because I am a seasoned copywriter and particularly excellent at what I do (cue my boss laughing), I can complete an article ready for editing in a couple of hours.
That is, after I spend too much time wondering how many times I can say the word ‘drainage’ without it becoming spammy, changing my headings only to change them back again, and generally wondering if I have any talent as a writer whatsoever.
At this point, I don’t tend to start work on another article. Instead, I dedicate the last half an hour of my day to guest posting.
This is a great opportunity for me to face a lot of rejection, marvel at the extortionate prices for guest posts on certain sites, celebrate over one possible acceptance, and ultimately get my name and the company I work for more visibility.
I’ve made it to the end of the day and it has been a rather productive one at that, despite thinking about what I’m going to have for dinner frequently. Now to go home and prepare to do it all again tomorrow!
It’s worth noting that every day in the office is different and my tasks and schedule tend to change from day-to-day. But, despite writing on some pretty obscure subjects from time to time, I love by job and it’s always a privilege to see my work published online.