Content writing vs Copywriting vs SEO writing – what’s the difference (and WHY it matters)

By | January 24, 2020

Content, writing, copywriting,
creative writing, SEO, writing, technical writing.
What’s the main difference? There are a lot of differences between
these types of writing and choosing the wrong one can have pretty much disastrous
consequences for your business, so this video will help you
avoid that. Hi, I’m Csaba, founder of Game of Conversions, the place where online entrepreneurs
learn how to convert casual leads into profitable and paying customers. And today you’re going to learn the clear
differences between all these types of writing, how you should use
them, when you should use them, and how to make the most
out of them. Keep watching. If you’re new to this channel,
make sure to subscribe to it. Just click on the subscribe button below
and hit the notifications bar as well because that way you will be notified
each time I release a new helpful video, which will help you grow
your business online, achieve more with freelancing or just
pretty much make more money online. All right, and with that being said,
let’s get into the nitty gritty. Here’s the problem. Most people have absolutely no idea
what all these types of writing mean. And if you use the wrong one, you will
have a pretty big problem on your hands. Let me give you an example. If
you want to sell something online, then you should obviously use
sales, copywriting. However, if in this case use content writing
or technical writing instead, then you can be pretty sure that not
many people are going to convert. Not many people are going to become
your customers. And the same is true. If you want to rank higher
in Google, then obviously, you want to use SEO copywriting
because if you use some salesy types of messages, then you won’t have an opportunity for
the search engine to crawl those keywords that you selected and you’re going to
basically miss out on a big opportunity. So there’s a place for
everything and they, I’m going to show you
which one means what. And our first contender
is content writing, which is pretty much one of the most
common types of writing online or offline. And in a nutshell, it basically means you just
write something that people
read and preferably you make it enjoyable for people
so that they actually read it. They don’t just skim through it. Now with that being said is
content writing easy? No. Heck no. Actually you have to learn a lot to
become a great writer and this is one of those subtle differences that can really
show the difference between a good writer and a great writer. Because whenever you’re reading
somebody from a great writer, you’re going to be sucked in, pulled
into the text like there’s no tomorrow. Now with content writing, the aim is to make it as enjoyable as
possible for people because that’s the way they’re going to read more and more
of your stuff. So if you’re a blogger, if you have a content marketing strategy, and this is where this content
writing is absolutely crucial, then you want to make sure that your
text is easy to digest. It’s enjoyable, it speaks to the reader. It talks about things that are important
to them and it’s just plain old. Sounds nice. It’s also good to make it conversational
as if you are talking to a friend at a bar. But obviously there’s going to be a
difference between the type of publication that you write. Something more professional is going
to have a little bit different tone to something which is a more
friendly or young or upbeat. Now, should you use content
writing to sell something? No, absolutely not. And the thing that you should
use instead is copywriting. So then we have our second
contender, one of my favorites. And if you don’t know copywriting, you should definitely get to know it
better because it’s one of the most profitable skills that you can ever
have. Why is that? Well, simple. It’s because copywriting is the art of
science or stringing together words that sell, that make people take
an action. Not tomorrow, not the day after tomorrow, but right now. And that’s why it has a huge value
to both marketers, business people, and basically to everyone else as well. If you want to basically persuade your
high school sweetheart to go to a dance with you, guess what? You’re
going to use copywriting. So obviously the aim of
copywriting isn’t easy. Like think how hard it is to
convince people to do something, to persuade them, not to manipulate them, not to basically force
them to do something, but to build genuine desire
for something in them. Well, that’s the aim of copywriting
and it actually has roots
and in direct marketing. And it was called, firstly, it was called direct response copywriting
because unlike various TV ads for example, or classical
advertising or branding, the aim was to get a direct
response from people. So they would get a mail for example,
and then there would be a letter inside. These were called sales letters. And the whole aim of the letter was to
get people to mail in a check or just buy something right from that letter. And the same is true today as
well with emails, for example, or dedicated sales pages. By the way, if you want to check out how such
a sales page looks in practice, then you should definitely check out
this video above because it breaks down. One of my own sales pages used
to sell my own online course. Rainmaker email mastery with great
effect. Getting back to copywriting, obviously you need a
different skillset for it. You need to be much more
knowledgeable in psychology, even in behavioral economics and all
those subtle things that make people do something. It’s not enough to be
good writer. And in fact, it’s a, it’s a funny thing and a funny fact in
this industry that most people who have a degree in writing or they’re
more knowledgeable in literature, they’re going to have a hard time learning
copywriting because they will have to unlearn a lot of things that
they studied there. For example, you cannot really have big
paragraphs in copywriting. You want to make the text
as clear as possible. Some usual grammar rules simply don’t
apply here because a lot of people especially your target
audience, we are writing to, they don’t think like professional
writers. They think like ordinary people. They talk like ordinary people and you
want to write them in a tone which is like ordinary people. Even if that may not be
technically fully correct. So just keep this in mind. The aim of copywriting is to
convert no matter what. Okay? And there’s one more type of copywriting
which is getting more and more popular nowadays. It’s called
conversion copywriting. And it’s a one more step above direct
response copywriting in the sense that conversion copywriting uses a lot of
data and it’s it’s data driven type of writing in a sense that first you get to
know your ideal customers and audience really well. Then, you uncover
what are their pains, fears, hopes and desires. And then you do a bunch more
customer research like review mining. You go to Amazon, you see what other type of people say
about books in the niche that your product is in or the product is in that you
want to promote or you closely look at testimonials that you, that you already have to
see various patterns to see
what people really want how they can identify with
your solution as best. And then once you have
all this information, only
then do you start to write, not just you know, writing something that you think
it sounds nice or just, you know, wordsmithing. No. you write based on the cold hard
data that you have and you test. Okay? So nowadays, whenever you’re
writing a landing page, a sales page, an email, anything you can test and good conversion
copywriters know that there’s no such thing as a magic bullet. They come up with the first variation
they test and they optimize it based on feedback that they get based
on real world feedback. So this is the main difference between
a conversion copywriter and a content writer. For example, a conversion
copywriter has a system, has basically a workflow
that these people go through, which involves a lot of data, which
involves a lot of testing, AB testing, user testing, even heat mapping software that
you can apply to your websites. And based on those data they
write, they refine, they iterate. And that’s the whole process for
conversion copywriting. But then again, you also find people who are
looking for SEO copywriters. And why are they called SEO
copywriters? Well, again, this is a mistake because most of
those writers don’t really do real copywriting. They do content writing in
a way that is SEO optimized. So what this means is that they use and
they incorporate a lot of short-tail and long-tail keywords into their writing so
that that text is going to rank high in Google search engines. And SEO writing is absolutely crucial for
any content marketing strategy because if you would get a copywriter, a sales or conversion copywriter to
write something which will rank high, obviously most likely it won’t because
that tax is optimized for the human element. That best is optimized to get
people to act right now and to buy, while a content writer or an SEO
writer comes up with text, which is more aimed at the algorithm. So Google’s algorithm obviously
it has to be, you know, enjoyable to read as well. So in a few years ago you could keyword
stuff text and it would rank high, but nowadays it doesn’t really work
that well because Google is looking for context. And good SEO copywriters or
writers basically use these
keywords both short and long tail very intelligently, but they’re still not copywriters because
their aim is not to get people to buy ASAP. So now that we covered all
three major types of writing, let’s talk about a few
misconceptions that people have. So if you’re a business owner
and you’re looking for a writer, you should definitely know that
if you hire a true copywriter, a conversion copywriter, direct response
copywriter or even sales copywriter, you’re going to get text which
converts, which is the main objective: to get the sale. And obviously these copywriters are going
to be more expensive and the skillsets involved are very sophisticated because
they have to combine various skills from various fields of study to basically
engineer a text that converts. However, if you just want to get a blog post
or content for your content marketing strategy, then you shouldn’t really hire freelance
copywriters because they’re going to be much more expensive and their
expertise is to get the sale. What you need instead is content writers
or SEO writers who are going to give you engaging text that people are going
to love to read and is going to be much more affordable. And the same is
true if you’re a freelance writer, as if you see a job post which
says sales copywriter wanted. Obviously they’re looking for
someone who can get the sale, who can give them results, who can boost
their numbers and their conversions. However, if they are looking for an SEO copywriter
or content writer or creative writer, then they’re looking to
get content from you. Now, the problem is that oftentimes a lot
of clients confuse this and that’s what this video tries to solve. But you should know that most clients
are people when they think about copywriters, they don’t really
think about conversion copywriters. They don’t know how much work and
skills and knowledge and and process is involved in crafting taxed for landing
pages or sales pages that truly converts. It’s not just coming up with something
off the top of your head and that’s it. It’s very far from it. So most of the time people are going to
look for basically a Jack of all trades. So it’s good if you know, you
know, all these types of writings, but if you’re a more qualified copywriter, then you should only work with clients
who are looking to convert and who are looking for text, which
shows them results. However, if you’re a blog writer
or a content writer, you can pretty much take any job because
maybe it will have some copywriting elements as well, but I’m sure that
you’re going to able to handle it. So now that I told you all these
good stuff about copywriting, should you learn it? Should you get
better at it? Well, my answer is yes, definitely. As I said, this is one of those high-income skills
that will serve you for the rest of your life. Whatever you write is going to
be good for emails, for landing pages, for sales pages, for
video scripts, anything, because the same concepts
apply either way. So how should you learn copywriting? Well, my recommendation is that you can
start with one of these three books. The first one is called advertising
secrets of the written word, but it’s also called the Adweek
Copywriting Handbook. Okay. Depending on the region. And it’s written
by someone called Joseph Sugarman, who was a master
copywriter back in his day. And this book is going to give you tons
of gold nuggets on how to structure a sales message, what elements do
include how to convince them, persuade people to do something.
You’re going to love it. Another great book is On
Advertising by David Ogilvy, and if you don’t know it yet, then David Ogilvy is one of
those legendary marketers
who’s revered even today. He’s such a big guy in marketing
and in copywriting circles. And this book is going to change your
mind on how you look at persuasion and marketing. And the final book that I recommend is a
legendary book called the boron letters written by Gary C Halbert, one
of the most famous copywriters. I think he sold several billion dollars
worth of things back in the eighties and seventies. So yeah he’s a big name and this book is
basically about his thoughts written to his son from prison. So check it
out. You’re going to enjoy it. And as a bonus, I’m going to give you three other books
that are going to make you a better writer. So not just a copywriter,
but a better writer in general. And the first one is called
Bird by Bird, by Anne Lamott. And this is useful if you’re struggling
to string words together or you just have something called
the blank page syndrome. You don’t know what to write about.
This will help you get through it. Another one is from none other than the
legendary Stephen King called On Writing a memoir of craft. Well listen, Stephen King is one of the most recognized
writers ever and he definitely knows his craft. And if you want
to learn from the best, then this is the book you
should read. And finally, a more practical book that will also
help you make money as a writer. This one’s called The Well Fed Writer, financial self-sufficiency
as a commercial freelancer. In six months or less, and it’s
written by a guy called Peter Bowerman. Simply read this. If you want to learn how
to make money as a writer, how to pitch clients, how to get paid, what you’re worth and how to not
lose your sanity in the process. And that’s pretty much it.
If you liked this video, then make sure to subscribe to the
channel because I’ll be posting regularly about things that will help you grow
your online business or achieve success online. Also if you love
this specific video, then make sure to like it because it’s
going to help me a lot to create even better content in the future. Also, if you want more exclusive
online marketing techniques
that I only share with some select subscribers, then head over to Game of
and subscribe to my ever-growing newsletter. It’s free and it will
no doubt, gives you a lot of value. And now it’s your turn. Leave a comment below and tell me what
type of writing you’ve done before either for a client or for yourself or for
your business or for your high school sweetheart. Just let me know
in the comments below. So
that’s it for this video. Thank you very much for watching and as
always, see you guys in the next one. Take care.

11 thoughts on “Content writing vs Copywriting vs SEO writing – what’s the difference (and WHY it matters)

  1. Kat Post author

    This is great. The only thing is that content writers often employ SEO strategies to help quality content to rank well on google. In fact, a good blog content uses SEO writing strategies. Long-tail content with good SEO will likely rank higher on google than some shorter post filled with SEO words. This may be true for copy as well, but as a content writer, I have no idea.

  2. Eszter Adamik Post author

    Really nice content! Finally I understand who does what. And I also like the book recommendations part in the end, because now I know which field is useful to my work and what types of books I shall read to bring my work to a next level! Big thank you!!!

  3. Sourav Ghosh Post author

    Hi Csaba! Just wanted to thank you for this video. Using it to train my content team 🙂 Very useful.

  4. Ankit Punia Post author

    Hi! Thanks for starting your channel. Firstly, I saw your free copywriting tools video which was amazing. Now I think I will keep watching your videos. Very high quality knowledge which I think 70-80 percent of businesses does not follow.

  5. Shobha J Post author

    This may soon become my new fave channel. I do Content Writing mostly. However, my work in developing TV show ideas has put in a space where I have had to also look at Copywriting. So, your video has been useful in discovering where I want to focus as my career progresses.

  6. Juice Chick ATL Post author

    Great video. Simple and to the point. I liked how you offered books for further exploration on the subject. I've written two romance novels. Let Go of Your Heart and Forever Fabulous. Thank you again for your video.

  7. A .M. Ali Post author

    I have been writing for a while and always enjoyed it very much.
    I wrote very much in high school because I was like the to go to guy for Writing letters and Essay Writing.Even in My sophomore year Senior students would come to me for their writing neccesities.
    Can't wait to scale my writing into a bussiness thank you.

  8. Muntazir Mehdi Post author

    It was very thorugh and easy to understand. Good job..and also make a video on difference between freelance copywriters and advertising agency copywriters who make commercials for TV etc.


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