Copywriters are great! They translate difficult information into digestible chunks, they encourage consumers to buy two pairs of studded leggings instead of one, they amuse, they explain and sometimes they even inspire. Despite the sheer awesomeness of your average copywriter, they aren’t very good mind readers. Or maybe they are, but I’m not.
To write a good article, I need a good brief. What constitutes a good brief? I’m so glad you asked!
1. An interview
To understand what you need, I need to talk to you. I need your undivided attention for an hour to ask questions, to make sure that I understand what you need and to ensure that we agree on the angle of the article.
To understand your product or service, I need access to every single piece of information on the product and the industry. This includes technical information, an overview of recent developments in the industry, the key role players and industry gossip. If you think the information you have is irrelevant, you’re probably wrong.
I need to understand what made you identify the need for the article. When I understand why I’m writing the article, I understand what the article has to achieve.
4. A source
Quoting a reliable industry source outside of your company gives the article credibility. An industry expert might also contribute valuable information that you are unaware of. I will need the name, contact number and email address of a person that is well known throughout your industry.
5. A deadline
Whether it’s a week, a month, or a day, I need to know how much time I have to read up on your product, gather additional information, set up interviews, produce a first draft, make the final changes and edit the article.
You should also do the following: