How content and copy are different

Hire an editor for a new launch – that was the simple request put to a friend and member of the Collective Content family. The hunt was ultimately successful but along the way he learnt a thing or two.

Most importantly, he worked out a simple question to sort those with a background in copywriting from those who are journalists.

He asked: “What is the best story you ever broke?”  

To those with a background purely in content creation, often under marketing, the question did not compute.

For the journos, it was obvious. (Though they didn’t all have great answers, I’m sure.)

What does this show? There is a difference between copy and content.

In this guest post over on the CMA site, Robin Bonn from Seven gives us more on the same theme (Great copy isn’t content).

“A nice bit of copy won’t cut the mustard,” he concludes. And you can see where he’s coming from.

It is one thing when someone I know is tasked with hiring an editor and copywriters apply. It is another when brands shifting towards content marketing in a big way can’t get out of a mentality that leans towards:

  • the campaign (three months?) over the long term;
  • the product over its benefits and customers;
  • the company line over authenticity;
  • the company message over good stories;
  • sell, sell, sell over tell, tell, tell.

Plenty of content creators can write some copy. Not so many copywriters can generate content.

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