Content shouldn't be the poor cousin


As a freelance copywriter something has become very plain to me.

Over the years I’ve seen it happen time and time again.

Without fail, every project follows the same pattern.

Well it’s time things changed and I’m about to tell you why.

It’s not all just about a pretty face

Rebranding or redesigning your website is an exciting time.

It’s a chance to reinvigorate your business and evolve your ‘look’ to match the current state of your business.

After finding the right designer for you, you spend hours with them talking about design ideas, colour palates, images, interactive elements and other flashy gizmos. It takes the lion’s share of your budget, but you don’t care because you want it to look fabulous.

Weeks or even days go by, but you don’t care because you’re totally focused on getting it right.

Finally, you’ve done it. It looks amazing and you want to launch next week. There’s just one problem, there’s no content.

But that’s not an issue, right?

It’s only a few words. You can knock that up in no time.

Writing isn’t as easy as it looks

You had a week to get the content written.

After three days you have a sentence. That’s it. The remaining 8 pages are blank.

Then you have a brain wave.

After a quick Google search you have a list of copywriters to speak to.

The first one is fully booked. The second can’t start until next week. The third won’t be able to complete the task within your tight timescale or budget.

Now you have a problem.

You have a fantastic looking website with absolutely no content. Your project has failed because you thought the looks were more important than the substance.

Your website needs beauty and brains

A stunning website is useless if it doesn’t have professionally written, powerful content. That’s why both the design and content must be given equal priority.

Great design doesn’t happen overnight and neither does great content.

You might think a copywriter just sits down and, well, writes.

You’re wrong.

A copywriter has to get to know you, your business and your clients. They have to understand your brand’s personality to ensure the right tone is used throughout the content. They have to understand your market by researching your competitors to ensure the right vocabulary is used to help your search engine optimisation. Then they have to start creating the content, writing a compelling story that will stop your reader in his tracks and compel him to get in touch or buy.

None of this can be done quickly.

There has to be time to think.

There has to be time for thoughts to evolve.

And all of that costs money.

You don’t bat an eyelid at the price of your design, so why have a fit when you get a quote from your writer?

Yes, your website design will attract people, but only if they can find you in the search results.

Your content will help you do that.

Your website design won’t make someone buy from you.

Your content will do that.

So if you think about it, right now you’re ploughing most of your budget into the looks of your site and yet the content, which will attract and convert visitors into customers is seen as secondary.

Can you see why that’s so wrong?

I know what you’re thinking – I’m only saying this because I’m a copywriter. OK, you got me, but there’s more to it than that.

I’ve seen so many companies that obviously poured most of their budget into their website’s design only to fill it with content that was written in-house that really lets them down.

Your content is vital.

As I said before, it helps your SEO by attracting visitors and ensuring your website ranks highly in the search results. Then, once they’re on your website, it converts them into customers.

So if you want great ROI get great content.