How to Fast-Track Your Way Into to a New Career in Copywriting
So, you’ve decided to ditch your timesuck of a 9-5. Awesome.
And, you’ve decided to dive headlong into the lucrative field of copywriting. But, the problem is, you’re not a copywriter…YET. You have a lot to learn, and you want to learn copywriting fast.
Copywriting is a skill that takes many people YEARS to master. How can you learn copywriting fast and jumpstart your new freelance business without spending half a decade mastering your craft?
Learn Copywriting Fast: How To Gain Marketable Skills in Minimal Time
Let’s get one thing out of the way before we jump in: To learn copywriting fast is one thing, but mastering the art and science of copywriting is another.
Before you write your first word, it’s important to keep your expectations in check.
You aren’t going to become one of the greats overnight. You’re probably not going to go from 0 to Eugene Schwartz level with your first piece. But if you really put in the effort, you can learn the fundamentals of copywriting quickly––at least enough to hit the ground running and turn around great work for your clients.
So, how can you learn copywriting fast? Let’s get into it.
- Create a “Swipe File”
A swipe file isn’t actually “swiping” the copy, but it’s copy you wish you could! A swipe file is a collection of EVERY great piece of copywriting you come across. If you see a great example of email copywriting, for example, save it and stash it in a designated folder on your computer. See a Facebook ad that makes you stop scrolling IMMEDIATELY and look at what they’re offering? Into the swipe file it goes.
Any time you find yourself saying “I wish I would have written this!” save it and stash it away for later.
So, what do you DO with a swipe file?
IMMERSE YOURSELF IN IT. Study it. WHY did the copy catch your attention? What emotion did it evoke? Use it as inspiration when you’re writing something that you want to evoke the same emotion. But, remember: inspiration doesn’t mean replication. Don’t plagiarize someone else’s work.
- Activate Your “Copywriter Brain”
Warning: Once you turn on the “copywriter brain” it will never shut off. Ever.
Activating your “copywriter brain” means starting to analyze every bit of copy you see (and hear!) While you’re driving to the grocery store. While you’re scrolling through social media. While you’re listening to Spotify (finally, a reason for those damn commercials for those of us who don’t want to commit to that premium membership).
Pick apart every piece of copy you see. What do you like about it? What do you dislike about it? Is it effective? Is the message easy to understand? Would you want that copywriter to write copy for you?
Doing this will train your brain to subconsciously “write” even when you’re not actively writing.
- Pick a Copywriting Format and Dive In
Copywriting covers a broad range of formats. Sales pages, product descriptions, ads, brand copy, social media copy (the list goes on and on and ON!). If you want to learn copywriting fast, start by choosing a platform and learn as much as you can about it.
Many new copywriters start out with shorter form copy like social media ad copywriting or take an email copywriting course to hone their skills. Once you’re confident in your abilities in one format, pick another. And another.
- Read Copywriting Books
One of the best ways to learn copywriting fast is to read copywriting books written by other copywriters. Gaining insight from a good copywriter will help you connect with your words and your audience more deeply.
- Complete Copywriting Exercises
You can learn copywriting fast by practicing your skills through copywriting exercises that push your brain to think (and write) like a copywriter. I have a list of copywriting exercises I’ve put together for you HERE to help you get started.
Put in the Work to Build a Solid Foundation
Copywriting isn’t (I repeat: ISN’T) a get-rich-quick scheme, and it takes a LOT of time, dedication, and effort to develop and fine tune your skills. Even the most experienced copywriters are constantly learning. But, if you know in your heart that a career in copywriting is meant for you, putting these tips into practice will help you learn copywriting fast.