How to give your copywriter feedback

You want great results from your copywriter, right? Of course you do. So you need to get involved. It’s highly unlikely that your copywriter will get everything right without a little help from you, the client.

Your copywriter has to get lots of things right. They have to:

  • Adopt a tone and style suitable for your brand
  • Appeal to your audiences
  • Use language and jargon appropriate for your industry/profession
  • Include all the key facts and important details
  • Highlight your key messages
  • Lead readers on a journey and encourage them to take action
  • Write copy that you will like too

Give better feedback, get better copy

If you can give your copywriter clear feedback, they will be able to respond to your suggestions and improve your copy.

So how can you give good feedback?

1: Be specific

Tell your copywriter precisely what you do like, and what you don’t like.

Instead of saying, “the copy just isn’t on brand”,

say: “the word ‘guff’ isn’t appropriate for our brand’”.

If you give your copywriter feedback verbally, they may not understand precisely which bits of the copy need to be changed. You can easily waste your time by getting your copywriter to change bits of the copy that you like, while they ignore the bits you don’t like. So be specific.

Try highlighting sentences or phrases in the document, and giving an explanation of why those elements need more work.

 

2: Offer suggestions

If you have a very specific idea of what you want, why not try writing it down? You might struggle to write the copy you’re imagining, but your attempt will probably show the way for your copywriter.

Or if you’ve seen copy that you like (perhaps on a competitor’s site), why not provide that as an example? Even better, highlight words and phrases in the competitor’s copy, and explain why you like them.

 

3: Consolidate your feedback

Give your copywriter one batch of feedback. You might have multiple stakeholders with differing views on the copy, but, of course, you don’t want to give your copywriter multiple, conflicting views. Settle any disagreements you have in your organisation before responding to your copywriter.

 

4: Edit, comment and Track Changes

Your copywriter is a writer, just like you. Sure, they spend more time writing than you do, but you still have the tools to edit and comment on the document your copywriter has provided.

Turn on Track Changes and start changing the words you don’t like, and adding anything that you feel is missing. Use the commenting feature to add questions or to discuss anything you’re not sure about. Treat the copywriting process as collaborative, because you know your business. We just know how to write.

 

5: Keep an open mind

Choose a copywriter who you can trust. Pick someone whose work you admire. And then be prepared to consider their recommendations. Question anything that you’re not sure about, and challenge everything you don’t like or agree with, but do consider (with an open mind) your copywriter’s recommendations.

 

 

3 Comments »

  1. [...] If you’re not totally happy with your copywriter’s results, check out Leif’s article for some great tips on giving positive, effective feedback: How to give your copywriter feedback [...]

    Pingback by Give Better Feedback for Better Copy — May 16, 2013 @ 5:11 am

  2. Now I came to know how to give our copywriter feedback for this. To write better feedback these five should help.

    Comment by SEO Copywriter — May 16, 2013 @ 5:56 am

  3. Good article, thank you.

    I would also add to your list the need to feedback promptly. Also to try and adopt the mindset of your customers, not your personal preferences/agenda.

    Comment by Ideaswise London Copywriting — June 14, 2013 @ 4:40 pm

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