Click here, learn more, let’s chat. Great copy tells a story so good – you just have to find out more. It can be highly actionable, a little provocative, sometimes clever, brutally honest, smart and above all – authentic. Copywriters are the creators of brands and masters at setting the tone. They know how to make those personal connections that ultimately keep the reader coming back for more. That’s why it’s become more important than ever for companies to have a strong team of in-house copywriters that live and breathe their brand. Luckily, at The Studio we do!
I recently sat down with Jennifer McGuire the National Director of Creative Content to get her take on the impact of copy and how important it is to have a strong team of copywriters.
How has the copywriting team evolved over the years?
There’s been tremendous growth. When I first started in 2012, we had two copywriters who only wrote for the Southeast region. As the company has grown, we’ve started working on a national basis and the team has grown to six. When Design Concierge launched, we added another five copywriters to that team.
We’ve also specialized the teams, which has allowed our copywriters to really focus on what they’re best at. We have a team that only handles the really creative concepting jobs such as new ad campaigns and recruiting campaigns. We have another team that handles the market share assets, annual updates and the 7,500 MoxiPresent pages for 230 different regional presentations. Finally, our Design Concierge team specializes in agent marketing materials – they are incredible at writing agent bios and can find 50 different ways to showcase an agent’s experience, so every bio is unique.
What work are you most proud of?
It’s hard to name just one – I have a new one every month! Right now, I’m really proud of the work we’ve done to promote The Studio itself on Instagram. The copy is fresh and appealing, and really communicates what makes us different. I’m also very proud of the work we’ve done to support the Coldwell Banker brand’s new TV commercial. The ad was produced by an outside agency, but we are doing a print ad campaign based on the concept, and while it’s still in development, I love the direction we’ve taken on the copy.
I’m continually amazed by the work we’ve done for the Clients for Life program. The team churns out a crazy number of jobs every month on this one program, and the copy is always so fun and engaging. I’m also really proud of the Design Concierge team and how they’ve handled growing so quickly. We created the DC copywriting team about two and a half years ago, and they now handle hundreds of jobs a month, sometimes 1,000+.
Where does your team find inspiration?
I can’t answer for everyone, but I find inspiration in just about everything I read. Social media is a big one for me, along with the magazines and books that I read. When I see an interesting phrase, I’ll write it down or take a screen shot. I’m also an avid reader and during covid, I read the entire Harry Potter series in about five weeks. There’s a ton of inspiration in books alone.
Length of service and/or the teams combined amount of experience?
Together, our entire copy team has a combined 194 years of writing experience. That’s basically two lifetimes of experience, which is just incredible! On average, we have 18 years of copywriting experience. We have a mix of ad agency writers, journalists, ex-professors, professional proofreaders and marketing writers. To find that level of knowledge, talent and writing experience is extremely hard. I feel very lucky to have the team that I have.
Advice to someone interested in a career in copywriting – what skillset does one need?
I’d say it depends on what type of copywriting you want to do because it varies a lot. Number one is obviously that you need to be a great writer and number two, you need to have a strong attention to detail so you can proofread well.
Some writers are excellent at long-form, so they’re great at things like editorial feature stories, advertorials, bios, blog posts and annual reports. Some are better at short-form, so they might be more suited for things like advertising and social media.
To be a marketing copywriter today, I’d say a really important skill is knowing how to write for social media. You need to be active on the platforms you write for and understand specific best practices. It’s hard to imagine a marketing copywriting position today that doesn’t involve social media, so really understanding how to write for social is a vital skill. It’s also important to take a fresh approach and be creative!
Finally, anything else you want to add regarding your teams capabilities?
I think something we do well and that I’m always focused on is matching the voice. Writing for a real estate brand vs. a brokerage or an agent is very different. They all have a distinct voice based on their audience, and it can be a challenge to write in different voices. We currently have 11 copywriters that all have their own unique style, but we can’t write for our clients in 11 different voices. We have to all be able to adapt to the specific style of each of our clients, and that’s something our team does very well.
We’re also very focused on social media, whether it’s writing a social recruiting ad campaign, creating a campaign that promotes their 2021 claims and results, or writing copy for a social holiday video. Everything needs to be succinct, creative and eye-catching when delivering a specific message. The eye-catching part is really key, because our cell phones have eaten away at our attention spans. In today’s world, readers don’t want to read a bunch of words, so you’ve got to grab their attention quickly.