So what do you do?
I am a Copywriter at a marketing agency!
People, for some reason, automatically think that Copywriting has to do with legal claims and a bunch of other boring nonsense that I can't even begin to be interested in. Not so!
My job is fun, like really fun. I get to work with Creative Directors, Graphic Designers and Public Relations professionals to create the exact image or message that our clients are striving to portray.
Yes, I do write a lot. Every day. All day. I write magazine ads, commercial scripts, webinar outlines, radio spots, brochures, social media captions, website copy, blogs, you name it! During my first month at my agency, I trembled before submitting an e-blast that would deploy to over 25,000 people. Guess how many times I proofread it? The limit does not exist. *Cough, Mean Girls*
Copywriters are needed because every brand has a different story and a different voice. It is often said that Copywriters should be called "Idea Writers". We are supposed to see the big picture or the over-arching message, and then make sure that everything a brand does supports that message. It takes someone who is skilled at creating these voices and then navigating between several different voices and brands a day to be a good Copywriter. Luckily, I have some pretty awesome bosses who are teaching me how to be better at this every day. My background in public relations and marketing definitely made it easier to transition into this role. Oh yeah, I guess I should tell you how I got started!
I graduated from Mississippi State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and Public Relations. Before venturing into the copywriting world, I worked at a digital marketing agency in Starkville (Heyyy @SociallyIn - recently relocated to Birmingham) and a public relations firm (@MPF) in Nashville. I wrote A LOT in both of these positions. Unbeknownst to me, these positions were preparing me for a job that I did not know I wanted or needed yet. God works like that, y'all.
Landing the job
Fast forward a year and my fiance (now husband!) was in medical school in Spartanburg, SC. I wanted to make the move from Nashville so that we could be in the same city again (we had been long-distance for over a year! But that is another post for another time) so I started looking at positions in the GVL/SBURG area. I originally reached out to a few companies and had several interviews, but nothing seemed to be a good fit so I passed on several gigs.
Through my brother-in-law's connection with a company, I found myself browsing their website. They weren't hiring. Great. So, I decided to go out on a limb and email the PR Director and just simply ask for advice about agencies in the area, her professional opinion on the industry in Greenville and her background in PR. This led to an in-person meeting. After we chatted for a while she mentioned that her department wasn't hiring, but then she proceeded to ask me if I liked to write...
HELLO I WRITE IN MY FREE TIME ALMOST EVERYDAY FOR MY BLOG. I HAVE KEPT JOURNALS FOR ALL OF TIME. I STUDIED JOURNALISM IN COLLEGE AND TOOK CREATIVE WRITING AND POETRY FOR FUN.
Play it cool, Payton. So I said, "Yeaaaah I like to write! I have a journalism background and agency experience" blah blah (I made it sound profesh). Two weeks and three interviews later, I got a job in Greenville as a Copywriter at Jackson Marketing Group. And it has blessed me every single day since!
Side note: The person who was hiring me read my blog and referred to it in an interview, so always make sure you are happy with what you put on the internet. He said my blog was "creative and witty", which made me smile because I was nervous to put my writing on the web, but I think it gave me the edge I needed to land my job! Moral of the story: Confidence is key and pursue what you are passionate about, even if it is "just a blog".
So that is it. That is what I do for 40 hours of my week. I brainstorm. I write. I create. I think really hard about silly things. I laugh with my coworkers. I learn new stuff, a lot of new stuff. I see my writing in print, on billboards, on brochures and on posters. And I save whatever creativity I have left at the end of the day for my little corner of the internet, Public Display of Accessories.
Staple Work Pieces
But now, on to the work 'fits! I am a firm believer in the "dress well, test well" philosophy, so most days I try to put some effort into my appearance at work. Some days though, I am the driver of the struggle bus and a Jackson t-shirt is all I can muster. Here are some of my staple work pieces that just might be a good option for your business casual work environment too!
This is just the start of a never-ending search for fun, affordable, fashionable and statement-making work pieces. For all the girl bosses and hustlers out there, keep going! If you have any questions about Copywriting or Marketing, feel free to shoot me and email. I love it and would be happy to help steer you in the right direction!
Cheers to how good wine tastes after a 9 to 5.