The Three Personalities Of Exceptional Copywriters

Writing exceptional copy isn’t simple, but is probably the most important thing you can do if you’re involved with internet marketing, or marketing in general. If you can’t write effectively, you’re going to struggle to make money with the internet.

Three Personalities Of Exceptional Copywriters

Split Personalities
Photography by SuperFantastic

To write effective copy, you will need to develop three distinct writing personalities: planner, creator, and editor.

Planner

Master Plan
Photography by Jurvetson

The planner personality should come out when you first decide to write about a topic. In order to plan effectively, you need to go through a 2-step process:

  1. Do your research. You will usually need to research your topic to make sure you’re covering it well. For some topics you may already know what you need to know.
  2. Make an outline. Creating an outline will help you during the creative phase, and will help you to see whether you’ve completely covered the topic.

Creator

Idea
Photography by Ryanrocketship

Once you have planned what you need to write, you will unleash your creator personality. During this phase, you don’t care about spelling, grammar, or anything else that could slow you down. Your research is already complete, so you will be free to write anything you like.

After the creator phase, you will edit your copy. This means that during the creator phase there isn’t any reason to worry about how things are said. Anything you type out that doesn’t apply can be altered or deleted later.

Almost all of my best ideas come out during the creator phase of writing. If I didn’t remove all limitations with the other two phases, this wouldn’t be possible.

Editor

Angry Editor Eye
Photography by Al Fassam

After the creator phase, I would recommend taking a break. The transition from creator to editor is very abrupt – you need to come back from your break as a completely different person. You now have to learn to act like someone else wrote the document you’re going to edit. You need to bring out the brutal dictator in yourself.

As the editor, you are responsible to make sure that the document can be easily understood by everyone that reads it. You need to make sure that it’s presented well. Your duties as an editor will include:

  • Checking for mistakes with spelling and grammar.
  • Adding graphics and images that help to better portray your message.
  • Formatting the document to make it easy to scan and visually effective.

Implement, implement, implement.

Comments 32

  1. “Writing exceptional copy isn’t simple”
    This is so true! Writing is hard! I am always amazed at some bloggers ability to write so well. You definitely fit into this category. I someday hope to aspire to your abilities as a writer. Thanks for comunicating so well!

  2. It would be great if all these personalities planner, creator and editor came rolled into one person, but that is rare. Which is why if you have a good team in place, you are on a winning pitch.

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  4. The point about taking a break between creator and editor is a very good one, Court.

    When you take an extended break, you come back to the desk and you forget how each sentence should be read. Because of this, you read the post exactly how your blog visitors will.

    I’ve often looked at my forum posts from previous weeks, months or even years. I often struggle to read them. At the time I wrote them, I knew how each sentence was supposed to be read because I had only just created it. However, had I taken a break before posting it on the forum, I would have realised that it didn’t quite read properly. In fact, I’m going to guess that this comment doesn’t quite read as well as to you as it currently does to me. 🙂

    A break is good. If it’s possible, make sure you use it!

    Good post, Court!

  5. Good stuff Court. A lot of times now, I will just write a title and save as draft, and comeback and write content to the title. All these points are good. I think a lot of people if they took a little more time to think about what they were writing after they wrote it, would improve their content and technique.

  6. While not taking away the importance of the three step process, which is logical, I would like to add the problem one, Selection of the Topic as being the most time consuming. To be unique, the topic has to be fresh, interesting enough to get visitors to read, provoke thought and comment on and keep coming back for more of such experiences.

  7. Court the first time I read one of your post and mmmm I feel horrible. 🙁 mmmm where do I fit lol next post Court, how a post should never be written and link to any of my post.

    LOL

    As always Court thanks.

  8. Hi Court,

    Thanks for another great article. Reminds me of the three faces of Eve. Taking on each personality is a challenge, and resting after the first two phases, is a really good idea. I can read copy over and over and still miss a mistake since I “know” what I wrote. Reading copy out loud is another good habit.I guess the three implements at the bottom of your copy works out to one implement for each personality, otherwise it would be redundant.

    Nick

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  10. Court,

    Great writeup!

    The one suggestion that I have been really trying to follow is to take a break between writing the article, and reviewing the article.

    After I write it, I can be kinda loopy with excitement, or chances are I’m just tired.

    By taking a break from seeing what I have written, it gives me a chance to clear my head before I go into edit and proofreading mode.

    I also sometimes will read it out loud to “hear” how it might sound to someone else.

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  13. wow…I just found out I’ve been following your guidelines without knowing they were proper guidelines! yay me.

    Taking a break before you edit is a very important thing to remember, its too easy to get caught up in the piece you are writing – caught up in the tone and language – and too easy to get overly familiar with what you are looking at. It is easy to overlook mistakes unless you take a break and change your frame of mind.

    Thanks Court – yours posts are always helpful (they even make you feel good sometimes).

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  16. Thanks for another great article. Reminds me of the three faces of Eve. Taking on each personality is a challenge, and resting after the first two phases, is a really good idea. I can read copy over and over and still miss a mistake since I “know” what I wrote. Reading copy out loud is another good habit.I guess the three implements at the bottom of your copy works out to one implement for each personality, otherwise it would be redundant.

  17. While not taking away the importance of the three step process, which is logical, I would like to add the problem one, Selection of the Topic as being the most time consuming. To be unique, the topic has to be fresh, interesting enough to get visitors to read, provoke thought and comment on and keep coming back for more of such experiences.

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