The roles of a copywriter and a content writer are often misunderstood. While there is some overlap, there are some fairly big differences between each discipline. And where does a content strategist fit into the equation?

It’s important to know how these roles differ because each discipline has its own unique set of challenges and objectives. Here, we’ll look at the main differences between all three.


What is a Copywriter?

A copywriter is in the business of persuasion. Copywriting is about using words and language to convince readers to take an action, whether it’s buying a product, downloading a report, or engaging with a company. You could call it sales writing, because it’s mainly used in advertisements, sales copy, emails, print ads, digital ads, brochures, and landing pages.

Unlike other forms of content writing, copywriting is usually more conversational and interactive. And because its goal is to persuade, it’s also more forceful. Copywriters can specialize in product copy, SEO copy, or direct response advertising, and some will focus on writing copy for specific industries.

Hire a professional copywriter to create ad copy, website copy, sales copy and more.


What Makes a Good Copywriter?

A really good copywriter will understand what a particular target market needs to hear and combine wit and persuasive language to compel readers to take a specific action. The best copywriters will:

  • Understand the needs of the target audience and use language to inspire confidence in the brand.
  • Use the appropriate brand “voice” to connect with readers.
  • Research a business and understand its marketing goals.
  • Write copy that is plain-speaking, free of jargon, and never boring.
  • Explain complicated ideas clearly.
  • Know how to use storytelling to stir emotions in the reader.
  • Understand SEO.
  • Know how to craft short-form copy that is highly persuasive.
  • Stick to the brief and deadlines outlined by the client.
  • Work with the client until they’re happy with the copy.

What is a Content Writer?

Unlike a copywriter, a content writer is more concerned with content that informs, educates, entertains, or instructs readers. They’re experienced in online marketing strategies and can create content for many channels, including websites, blogs, social media, and email. The content is usually designed to strengthen the relationship between the reader and the brand.


What Makes a Good Content Writer?

The best content writers will:

  • Use appropriate keywords to maximize search engine visibility.
  • Be experienced in producing long-form, engaging content.
  • Know how to structure content to make it easy to read and scan.
  • Have a strong grasp of English language and grammar rules.
  • Carefully proofread and edit content for clarity.
  • Know how to use language to keep the reader interested.
  • Use research to increase the credibility of the content.
  • Have experience writing for a range of industries.
  • Be able to come up with fresh content ideas.
  • Stick to the brief and deadlines outlined by the client.
  • Work with the client until they’re happy with the copy.

If you’re interested in learning more about this topic, check out this post on theĀ 10 skills every content writer should master.


What is a Content Strategist?

A content strategist controls the direction of a brand’s overall content strategy. They will have a vision for what the content needs to look like and where to publish it. They’ll also ensure that the content quality is consistent and achieves specific marketing goals. To do this, they’ll use analytics tools to prioritize content formats and distribution channels.


What Makes a Good Content Strategist?

Among other tasks, the content strategist should be able to:

  • Define the brand’s target audience.
  • Develop a flexible content strategy that supports business goals.
  • Set guidelines for the tone and style of all branded content.
  • Manage a content team and encourage collaboration.
  • Use the marketing budget to maximize the return on investment.
  • Know how to meet short-term and long-term marketing goals.
  • Keep projects on schedule without compromising quality.
  • Step in when required to create content.
  • Ensure content consistency across all channels.
  • Know how to use analytics tools to determine the best distribution channels.


In Summary

The goal of a copywriter is to persuade people to take action. The content writer’s purpose is to engage the reader. And the job of the content strategist is to develop a content strategy, manage the process, and maximize the results over time. Put simply, content writers builds trust, copywriters drive sales, and content strategists steer the content marketing ship.

Before you begin your next content project, keep these definitions in mind. Knowing where you fit into the equation will help you work more efficiently with others and ensure your content achieves its objectives, whatever they are.

Looking to hire a content writer or copywriter? Constant Content works with thousands of talented freelance content and copy writers.