As a copywriter, whether new or seasoned, do you hear the word “copywriting portfolio” or get the potential clientele email demanding your “best samples,” and break out in shivers? It doesn’t have to be such a frightening thing, but we understand.
Copywriting, in particular, is an area where potential clients and employers like to see many, many samples of your work, and your best work, before even considering you. It’s how you show them what you can do. When looking at these samples, they will definitely be judging and assessing your work.
As a copywriter, your portfolio is ultimately your shop window. It is a place you can emphasise your talents and showcase your work. This means that it’s important that you have a portfolio if you want people to see what you can do. You have to offer your future customers a reason to be drawn to you. You need to demonstrate your skills. You need to create a copywriting portfolio and show them what you’re made of.
However, many copywriters panic when they hear the words ‘copywriter portfolio’. Collating a collection of your pieces and presenting them for others to view and criticise can be intimidating. However, it’s essential if you are to prove your skills and impress your potential clients.
What is a Copywriting Portfolio?
The term ‘copywriting portfolio’ refers to a collection of your past written content. It shows potential clients:
- The writing that you can do,
- The results that you got, and
- What past customers say about your work.
As in any other portfolio of work, your copywriting portfolio should include your best work. It should show that you’re a versatile and efficient copywriter, regardless of the medium. As such, the ideal portfolio for copywriters usually includes both long and short-form content pieces that range in tone. You should also add copywriting samples for both editorial and commercial purposes.
Select Your Best Samples to Showcase
Here are a number of hints about how to start choosing exactly what to put in your copywriting portfolio.
When it comes to copywriters, there is not one of us who doesn’t have pieces that are close to our hearts for any reason. However, when it comes to designing your portfolio, push all nostalgia away, and think about your strongest pieces in terms of the:
- Skills required to write them,
- Performance of the content, as well as
- How well your copy fit the specific brief.
If you find yourself vacillating between, say, two pieces, think about who your ultimate client was – the person or organisation you wrote the content for. In addition, think about how big the audience for that copy was and if you are able to assess the copy’s performance.
As well, if you are planning on sending in your copywriting portfolio with a job application, try to adhere to a limit of five pieces. This gives the prospective customer or employer just enough to get a feeling for you as a copywriter, your skills and diversity, but not too much that you overpower (or bore) them.
If you’re putting together your online portfolio (and there are some great free websites out there you can do this on), you can increase the number of samples to 20. However, remain selective about what you’re putting in there and don’t be afraid to replace those pieces as your copywriting becomes stronger as well as more diverse.
Are you keen to become a copywriter? If you are, then why not check out our National Diploma in Copywriting. Or, if you want to increase your knowledge of digital marketing – in addition to becoming a copywriting pro, have a look at our National Diploma in Copywriting and Digital Marketing.
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