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Copywriting vs Content Writing – do you know the difference?

(And why both are important)


“Writing is easy. Just put a sheet of paper in the typewriter and start bleeding.”

Thanks for the pep talk, Thomas Wolfe.

Despite the somewhat grisly image – and the fact that hardly anyone uses typewriters these days – he has a point.

Writing is work.

Something you can likely attest to if you’ve ever tried to “whip off” a quick blog, press release or newsletter and found yourself still staring at the computer screen five hours later. That’s why so many businesses and individuals rely on a professional to get the words out for them.

Companies in need of written material often use either a copywriter or a content writer. Both types of writers concentrate on creating marketing content for organizations. But do you know who does what?

Learn the difference between copywriting and content writing and you can determine which will serve your needs best.


Copywriting vs content writing

All businesses need copy and content to connect with clients and build relationships. While both kinds of writing are vital, they are not synonymous.

Copywriting is designed to persuade an audience to act; content writing is about informing. Copywriting tends to focus on the short-term, whereas content is a long-term approach.

Examples of copywriting include ads, taglines, press releases, sales emails and sales and landing pages. It’s about crafting persuasive copy with a specific call to action – essentially, influence and conversion. Copy makes the sale.

Content writing in the form of blogs, newsletters, long-form social media posts and e-books aims to educate and even entertain the audience. Content marketing is about encouraging brand loyalty. Content makes the connection.


When to use a copywriter, when to use a content writer

A copywriter appeals to your audience’s emotions and uses psychological triggers to get them to “act now.” The tone tends to be conversational, and the format is short.

Use a copywriter when you are looking to:

  • Sell a specific product or service;
  • Convert traffic into leads and leads into sales;
  • Create a buzz and sense of urgency;
  • Have customers take immediate action.


A content writer gets your audience’s attention by engaging, informing and entertaining them. The approach is to garner and keep your customer’s interest and show how you can offer solutions. The tone can be personal or formal, and the format is longer and often part of a series or sustained approach.

Use a content writer when you are trying to:

  • Build loyalty and trust;
  • Establish your brand’s voice and persona;
  • Lay the groundwork for future sales;
  • Educate and inform your target market;
  • Build SEO and grow website traffic.


Obviously, all these items are necessary at some point for every business, including yours.

Lucky for you, at RP Copywriting, we have skills and experience with both writing approaches. Next time you need writing solutions – be they copy or content – get in touch.

Nancy Miller
Nancy Miller

Owner and editorial rockstar at Rock.Paper.Copy Writing Solutions

Articles: 74