By Susan Hammond
It’s February (no, I can’t believe it either) and Valentine’s Day is fast approaching. Are you ready for a bit of luurve?
This is the time of year when even we Brits like to show our passion. Well, some of us… some of the time… perhaps…
But does passion have a place in copywriting?
Of course! And I’m going to tell you why.
What is passion?
Here’s one definition of love: “an intense feeling of deep affection, a deep romantic or sexual attachment to someone.”
And passion: “a strong and barely controllable emotion, intense sexual love.”
But surely this isn’t the kind of passion a professional copywriter needs?! (At least not in the context of providing you with writing.)
Well actually, it might not be so far off the mark. Although with copywriting your passion is probably not aimed at a person (and hopefully it’s not sexual), a strong and barely controllable emotion…? Sounds plausible to me.
Perhaps a more appropriate definition is: “a great interest and pleasure in something” or, “an intense enthusiasm for something.”
How does a copywriter’s passion help you?
So what? How does a copywriter being passionate about something help you?
Well, passion is the fuel that keeps the fire burning. And with it your copywriter will be able to 1. keep writing and 2. keep writing well for you.
1. Your copywriter will keep on writing… and writing… and writing…
Passion is a force so strong it will keep your copywriter going, even during tough times.
Over Christmas I read World Without End by Ken Follett. A fantastic novel by all accounts, but what really struck me was one of the main characters, Merthin Fitzgerald.
Merthin is a humble builder living in the Medieval English city of Kingsbridge and his passion (plus skill) for creating beauty out of stone is unsurpassed. Yet his life is hard. He lost most of his family and many friends to the plague and was constantly opposed by the city’s alderman. And to top it off, Caris, the love of his life, took her vows and committed to life as a nun! But despite this (spoiler alert), he still achieved his greatest ambition to build the tallest cathedral spire in England. And he even got the girl!
While he could have been swallowed up with grief and bitterness Merthin’s passion for building kept him going. It turned a seemingly impossible dream into reality.
The fire in his belly pushed him forward, drove him to accomplish great things and momentum spurred him on.
Copywriters can use this force too. The fire also keeps us going.
Passion has helped me persevere with running my business – definitely a challenging pursuit. A spark of enthusiasm lights up my mornings and drives me out from under the duvet so I throw back the covers in anticipation of a great day! Well, sort of. We all have bad days sometimes, but you get the picture…
I’m eager to get started even though that pesky website SEO is lurking menacingly beside your mindfulness blog. Even though a million emails must be sent before I can create your canoeing advert. And even though, boring of most boring things on Planet Zzzzzzzz, I must get the accounting done first thing.
Praise the Lord for passion!
2. Your copywriter will keep writing well for you
Your copywriter will also keep producing quality content for you. The fire of passion leads to desire to keep learning. And learning coupled with practice leads to expertise.
Let’s go back to Merthin.
He designed and built some astonishing architecture despite the difficulties in his life. Sometimes the tough times even fuelled his desire to be the greatest builder in the country. When Merthin’s employer, Elfric, destroyed his exquisitely carved door he was enraged. Although initially Merthin felt like giving up, his spark of passion kicked in and he couldn’t help carrying on.
But his creations were not just built for practicality using the bog-standard methods of Elfric, but they were innovatively-designed employing the latest techniques. Heck, Merthin even travelled to Italy (not easy in the Middle Ages) to learn from the masters.
And the result? A bridge that didn’t need reinforcing after only a few years use, a plethora of houses that didn’t have to be rebuilt after every storm and his ultimate dream, the tallest cathedral spire in England. Merthin’s designs were leagues ahead of Elfrics because he was willing and eager to learn. And practice. He couldn’t coast, learning only from people stuck in the old ways, but continually improved at his craft.
I wonder what he was thinking. “Life sucks but at least I can keep doing something I love.” Or, “Come on! If I can keep making beautiful buildings I’ll not crumble. I can live without my girl. I can manage without family. I can still be the best.”
By focusing on his passion Merthin became Alderman of the town and the top builder in the area.
In the same way a copywriter’s passion will lead them to excel.
A passionate copywriter = the firecracker that will take your business to the next level.
How do you know what your copywriter’s passion is?
To hire the right copywriter, it may help to know what their passion is. There are several ways you can do this:
- Check out their website. There’s often an ‘about me’ page or something like it. And if not you may be able to gauge from the other content where their interests lie.
- Give them a call. All good copywriters will be happy to chat with you so use this as an opportunity to suss them out.
- Look at their LinkedIn profile. Like a website you can find out a lot here (as long as their profile is good – which it should be as they’re a copywriter…) Follow them or send a connection request so you can get to know them better.
- Link up on other social media.
- It’s always worth Googling someone – you never know what little gems you may find.
It could be that you own an upmarket London restaurant and you find a copywriter that has previously worked as a chef travelling the world to discover new food combinations. They’ll understand the food industry so, wise choice.
Or perhaps you’re a reflexologist so someone who regularly enjoys this kind of treatment may be the best copywriter for you.
There are infinite options and many copywriters have a specialist area.
If your business is in the outdoors and wellbeing niche, that’s where I can help…
How can I help you? What is my passion?
I love helping people feel good by getting outside and enjoying nature’s benefits. That spark I was talking about earlier propels me toward all things living and green, to go find big skies and to share the joy of that with others.
This passion stems from my own experiences of fun times, educational stuff and embracing nature’s healing power. I’ve enjoyed adrenalin-inducing pursuits like whizzing along zip-wires through the trees and hurtling down near-vertical ski slopes. But also more sedate activities like canoeing expeditions and mountain walking in the Scottish wilderness. As a geologist I cannot help sharing the beauty of nature with you – I love educating and inspiring people while out and about.
And there’s lots of research on why nature is good for you, how best to enjoy it and reap the benefits. So isn’t it a bit daft not to get outside more? My own recovery from depression was helped by getting up those mountains.
There are too many people who don’t enjoy the great outdoors – through ignorance, laziness, lack of time or other circumstances – and I want to help you get more people outside or enjoying natural products, caring for the environment and having better wellbeing.
Summary: Passion is good!
Despite what some may say I firmly believe passion is good! No-one can achieve much without it, copywriters included.
And do you want a copywriter that gives up at the first hurdle? Who can’t keep going under pressure? A copywriter who wants to curl up under the duvet and hide?
I thought not.
Your copywriter should be passionate because passion is the fuel that keeps the fire burning. There has to be a ‘why’ behind the ‘what.’
But this passion doesn’t have to be specifically about copywriting. For some it is, but for others, like me, it is something quite different (i.e. the great outdoors and wellbeing.)
Whatever that passion is, as long as your copywriter also has the right skills your business will prosper.
passion + copywriting skills = a cracking copywriter who’ll help your business succeed
[This article was originally published on susanhammond.co.uk on 04/02/19]