There are many different types of writing jobs.
The question: “Is article writing the same thing as copywriting?”
The answer: “Nope.”
The longer answer:
Copywriters are salesmen in print. We research a market, create an angle, and focus on being persuasive and getting readers to take an action (purchase, sign up, visit a store, etc). Copywriters are using psychology and – dare I say it – subtle manipulation to tweak at your emotions so that you take that desired action.
Article writers research and write informative pieces that make themselves (or the business they’re writing for) look smart and gain readers so people pay attention to what the writer/business has to say.
Copywriters = sales, persuasion
Article writers = make your business look knowledgeable
What are the different types of writers?
There are many different niches for a freelance writer to pursue. In fact, there’s too many for me to list. But here’s some of the bigger ones:
Creative writer – you write fictional novels, short stories, and anything that requires brain juice. Generally hard to make money from, the Internet has made it easier for creative writers to get their books ‘out there.’ Even if you can’t find a publisher, write your book, turn it into a PDF, and sell it as an ebook online.
Blog writer- You write articles for blogs on a daily, bi-weekly, or set interval basis. You’re responsible for researching, writing, moderating comments, staying productive, and keeping up with current topics in your field.
Advertising Writer – Copywriters fit into here. You write out advertisement ‘copy’ that evokes emotions in your readers and gets them to purchase the product/service you’re writing for. Lots of research and brainstorming involved, discovering unique selling propositions, and pulling out benefits. Not for the faint of heart.
Article Writer – You spend time researching a subject, then write an interesting and informative piece between 300 to 1,200 words long. Much more challenging than people would lead you to believe, good article writers are hard to find.
White paper writer – White papers are like 2-10 page articles. Not quite books, they’re information packed pieces written for companies to give away to customers that makes the company look knowledgeable in their particular market.
News Writer – Short and straight to the point. Don’t try to beef things up with too many sexy adjectives – only facts here. Challenging, rough deadlines, and cutthroat competition, but many find the pace exciting and rewarding.
Grant Writing – These writers write up proposals to get money from the government and other corporations. You’ll need to be very organized and be able to convince people that the project you’re writing for is worth the investment.
Ghost Writing – Ever want to do all the writing but earn none of the credit? Don the ghostwriters cap and that dream can be yours! Don’t worry, even though your name won’t appear on the by line, you’ll still earn money for your work. And generally, you can ask for higher fees since you’re not always allowed to show off your work.
Proofreader – Do you get chills when adding punctuation? Then proofreading is the way to go. It’s not quite writing – more like editing – but most proofreaders are writers. Make sure everything is spelled and formatted correctly, and you’re good as gold.
Technical writing - These writers create instruction manuals, how-to guides, and all the other useful info that comes with the products we buy. The instructions have to be clear, detailed, and include all the necessary guidelines to protect both the user and the company.
There are many sub-variations of the writing jobs I’ve listed, but these are the basics that come to mind. Take my word for it – companies need writers for a variety of fields. Even small companies usually have one of each type of specialty writer!
Now go fire up your pens and write up some happiness,