2010: predictions of a creative copywriter

7 January 2010

I think I share the views of almost every creative copywriter when I say ‘good riddance’ to the bumpy ride of 2009. One ad agency told us that their year degenerated from the normal ‘feast or famine’, to ‘snack or famine’. Another told us that they were involved in more pitch work than ever before, and yet the bits that they won never quite seemed to get a green light.

I’m happy to say that our copywriting services remained in pretty constant demand throughout the year, but that didn’t stop us finishing some 12% down, ending a 7-year run of continuous sustained growth.

So what of 2010? I for one am extremely optimistic – and not just because a creative copywriter has to be, to write well – but because I have some real evidence to base it on.

Big brands beginning to spend again
One of the big global brands we provide regular UK copywriting for turned the tap off half way through last year, cutting budgets and pulling in their horns. December saw them emerge with a few new projects and life looks like it may return to normal.

We’ve also been getting a steady increase in the number of new copywriting enquiries and have a really interesting pipeline of potential new business to start the year. Plus existing clients across all kinds of markets and all types of media seem to be planning plenty of new activity.

New value focus for consumers means words are more important than ever
One consequence of the big R – seen from restaurants and retail, through to B2B, travel and hospitality – is that consumers have become more discerning. As recovery arrives (touching wood, typing with crossed fingers etc) that’s not something they’re going to forget. Whether we’re talking ads, dm, web or print, quality copywriting with a distinctive tone of voice is a big asset in the battle for hearts and minds.

So what are our creative copywriting predictions for 2010?
1. I think SEO copywriting will continue to flourish, but the emphasis is shifting away from fixed page copy to news and blogs. Nothing entirely new here except I sense more brands looking for creative copywriting that genuinely adds value to their site. Rather than creating tons of bland pages stuffed with keywords, people are beginning to accept that web-savvy visitors need and expect real substance. That requires creative copywriters who understand brand, web content and SEO – so good news for people like us.

2. I think smaller clients (SME’s) are starting to realise the benefit of decent web copywriting in driving actions, which will precipitate a whole new demand for reworking existing sites with an SEO/content focus. We’re working on one right now and have a few other SMEs we’re talking with.

3. Sticking my neck out here, but I think clients may be a bit braver in 2010. Wackier concepts. Big ideas. Sharper delivery. It is the Year of the Tiger after all – let’s all do it justice.


Categories: General ruminations, Other stuff