To understand how obscure your occupation is, mention your job title to a stranger in a pub and then ask them what they think you do. When I’ve tried this as a copywriter, most people have said that I deal with copyright law, and one person thought it meant I paint the writing on signs. Well, we were in the pub.
So let’s demystify the role of the copywriter and give you a sense of what a career in copywriting might look like. I’ll be basing this on the company structure at Radix. Other copywriting businesses may have different structures, types of work, project management, and general fluffiness*.
At Radix, we only do B2B (business-to-business) copywriting for technology companies. So, we write the marketing materials our clients will use to engage their customers. The format could be anything from emails and blog posts to ebooks and white papers.
As each client’s brand has a distinct voice, the versatility to switch between voices and content styles is an essential skill for any copywriter – regardless of their seniority.
But what factors determine your position relative to other writers? We’ll use how we do things at Radix as an example of the kind of structure you can expect.
The Radix structure: our five-rung stepladder to success
Each writer at Radix is in one of five broad bands.
If you’re new to copywriting, the entry position at Radix is Junior Copywriter.
Our Junior Copywriters come to us from a variety of backgrounds. They might arrive straight from academia or have experience in a different career. To get noticed by Radix, your cover letter and writing sample must show us a spark of talent, no matter what topic you’ve written about.
When you join as a Junior Copywriter, you’ll probably start on shorter copy formats such as emails and blogs, although we’ll try and give you a taste of everything. All the while, you’ll be learning how the business works, all you need to know about our clients and their technologies, and how to write in a clear, concise B2B style.
At Radix, the next level up is Copywriter.
Our Copywriters have experience working on various projects and a greater understanding of marketing concepts and drivers. They’ll be comfortable leading client interviews and independently delivering lengthier copy formats such as ebooks and white papers.
There’s an add-on to the Copywriter role: Content Lead.
Our Content Leads act as brand guardians for clients. They’ll have the most in-depth understanding of the market for a client’s products and services, and the messaging clients use when writing about them. Everything written for a client will go through their Content Lead for review. This ensures consistent quality, style, messaging, voice, and tone for our established clients.
After our Copywriters and Content Leads have honed their craft and built new skills, the next level is Senior Copywriter.
Our Senior Copywriters have so much experience that they can handle anything thrown at them by any client, even if that means working with almost non-existent briefs. They’re also expected to support and mentor more junior staff members – to pass on the skills they’ve learned.
Beyond Senior Copywriter, we have a separate band for the Head of Copy, the Head of Training, and Senior Copywriters who are part of the Management Team. And after that? Well, we’re then into territory of which mere mortals can only dream: Creative Director.
Fostering personal growth at Radix
Experience is a key element in copywriting; it can take time to move between levels. At Radix, all writers get feedback throughout the year on the quality of their writing, subject matter understanding, business support, and client satisfaction – so they know exactly where they stand.
We also encourage our writers to seek out mentors – either from within Radix or from the external community – so they’re always developing.
And, at every level, you’ll be using your skill and creativity. So, if you’re a talented writer who enjoys niche and techy subjects, B2B copywriting is one of the rare ways you can write full-time for a living.
* Technical term used by our Creative Director.