How to brief a copywriter
If you have never briefed a copywriter before, don't worry. If the writer is a professional, he or she will know all the right questions to ask you. Nevertheless, it obviously helps if you can think things through for yourself in advance.
Listed below are the key topics you should be thinking about (using both the 'in' jargon as well as plain English explanations/samples). It's not an aptitude test or exam - just a list of the obvious things that could help your copywriter.
Copywriter Briefing (sample)
Nature of your business
Tone of Voice (written style)
- Management consultancy.
- B2B Mail Order company.
- Local housebuilder.
- High street retailer
- Internal staff use (such as a company induction).
- Affluent over 55s beginning to plan their retirement.
- Female, 16-19 year olds seeking budget, young, fashionable, clothing.
- Local authority service provider, middle management.
- Large company computer manager/IT director who is purchase decision maker.
- Building materials specifiers (eg architects, surveyors, lead building contractors).
- Sales brochure
- White Paper
- Mail campaign
- Corporate video script
- Generating new sales leads.
- Positioning the company as a top-of-the market/midrange supplier.
- Company awareness within the marketplace.
- Detailed product descriptions for product specifiers.
- A trading website that sells direct to the consumer.
- (Details of their websites can be useful)
- (ie Are you simply seeking a work-over/update of existing material?)
- (Let the copywriter know if they will have to interview people. Will they have to perform any research for information not available directly from you?)
- Sometimes you will know in advance the number of words required (typically a magazine article or an updating of an existing brochure)
- (Will it be printed? Will it be electronic, such as a website? Multimedia?)