Bernadette Schwerdt on copywriting

So you want to be a copywriter? You've heard that this is one of the most lucrative options you can have as a writer. But what does it really entail – and do you have what it takes to be successful?

Our weekly top-rating podcast So you want to be a writer features a regular ‘Writer in Residence’ segment – where an author, editor or other industry professional has a chat with either one of our awesome presenters, Allison Tait and Valerie Khoo.

In episode 43 of the podcast, Valerie interviewed Bernadette Schwerdt – a professional copywriter and creator of our Copywriting Essentials course. (Which just keeps selling out!)

It’s pretty clear from the enrolment numbers that people are fascinated by the world of copywriting, so we thought we’d share a couple of highlights from Bernadette’s interview:

On how it’s actually harder to write smaller amounts of copy:

“Mark Twain said, ‘I would have written you a shorter letter, but I didn’t have the time.' And it’s really true. Anyone can write a whole 30-page doctorate. But writing 50 words? That’s hard.”

On confidence, not word count, determining a copywriter’s fee:

“The thing to think about is it does come back to the copywriter because I’ve had students come through the course, and they haven’t even been in the course a month, and they are out there charging $350, $400 for a webpage. Off the bat. That’s just their belief, they believe they’re worth it, they’ve got the skill. Even if they don’t, they’re out there charging that and they’re getting it. And there other students who think ‘You know, I’m happy with $50 an hour, or I’m happy for $150 a page for a website'.”

Why creative people make great copywriters:

“Writers of novels and creative writers and actors are actually very well cut out for copywriting for one really good reason: they are people who are in the business of channelling. You think about when you’re writing stories and you’ve got characters, you’re living that character. You are absolutely embedded in that character’s emotional world. The ability to do that is very related to copywriting, because you got walk a mile in the shoes of your customer.”

Want to find out more about Bernadette’s excellent online course?  Head over this way!  You can also check out Bernadette's full interview with Valerie on our podcast page.

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