Does Copywriting Matter to the
Multimedia Web?

Multimedia Copywriting

It’s no secret that the web is moving more and more toward video and audio content. Text is still going strong and will always be a prominent part of the web content mix, but the shift to multimedia will only continue and intensify.

And for some, this is very good news. Not every one is (or wants to be) a great writer, and audio and video content can allow these folks to shine.

So does copywriting matter if you’re not dealing exclusively with the written word?

Well, given the subject matter of this blog, what do you think? :)

The answer, of course, is an unequivocal yes.

In fact, multimedia combined with a strong working knowledge of how best to present information (which is what copywriting is all about) can make you an incredibly engaging and influential web presence. All you need is a nudge in the right direction.

So here’s what’s covered in this Multimedia Copywriting series:

About the Author: Brian Clark is Executive Editor of Copyblogger and co-founder of DIY Themes, creator of the innovative Thesis Theme for WordPress. Get more from Brian on Twitter.

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Reader Comments (30)

  1. says

    Yes copywriting matters. But copywriting is changing.

    These days it is more important than ever to really get inside the minds of readers, to speak authentically to them, to drop the BS. This is important in any medium (although it’s vital to tailor your approach).

    Personally, I’m a little wary of the ‘X words you must use’ approaches. They can lead to copy that feels too constructed and which widens the gap between writer and reader. It is far better IMHO to achieve rapport and flow than to tick boxes.

  2. says

    Good point but take it farther. Copywriting has always been the thing that tied the ‘presentation’ together, accompanying graphics on a package, screen shots on a ad, and so on.

    The ability to add the right words to convey the complete thought becomes more important, not less.

    And video is now being indexed and search by the word spoken. Copywriting is intersecting with script and dialog writing.

    Good topic

  3. says

    I’ve never been into video/podcasts.

    Videos annoy me more than anything – and you can’t skip/scan them to get to where you as you can with text. Well, not as easily, without buffering etc.

    I’ll still ‘tune in’ though!

  4. says

    Hi Brian; this should be a really interesting series of posts.

    Of course it matters, though. From a very basic accessibility level (from people with disabilities to search engines), text must be made available in a format other than audio or visual; that is, good old text.

    This might not fall within what you’re thinking of as copywriting though, but it’s still important and, again, something additional for writers to offer (transcripts and so on).

    Looking forward to the rest! :-)
    Helen

  5. says

    Yes it matters. Communication matters more than ever. Everyone has a podium and everyone is reading, watching and listening.

    Even video shot without a script needs to be edited in a way that gives it a framework to take the viewer through the story. Strong copywriting skills help that tremendously.

    I started my copywriting career as a direct marketing writer and I’ve never been sorry I did. Especially today. Writing direct marketing teaches you to sell, when to be brief and when to be verbose, how to lay out your copy on the page so that a reader will absorb it (headlines, subheads, bullet points, short paragraphs, indentations, etc. All tricks of the trade.). How to frame an argument, counter objections, close the deal. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t use all these skills, on Twitter, on my own website, on clients’ websites and videos. The list goes on.

    Thanks for the topic. Good food for thought.

  6. says

    Well, text content and multimedia both have their own benefits and detriment, main thing is what should be used where and when.

    The online fact – ‘Content/text is king’ cannot be ignored.

    Text will always be king as it has great features like -we can scan it, no buffering and downloading time needed, it is easy to search, its distribution is very easy, just a copy-paste & you are done.

    Whereas, Videos conveys emotions and personality, audience can see the real thing, it enhance overall blog/ site appearance, it is good for quick result.
    But for long term results, I prefer text.

    Multimedia Copywriting series sounds interesting – Eagerly waiting for it.

  7. says

    What a timely post! We’re totally in sync! I was just speaking to someone about this the other day. I work as a Content Manager and I often tell people it’s like being an Editor-in-Chief for an online publication. But the very fact that it’s online means that I’m constantly dipping my hands into all kinds of media – podcasts, webinars, video…and I’m always frustrated to find that many writers haven’t expanded their skills in these areas. It’s really needed! Being able to write great sales copy and informative articles is a true skill, but more and more you’ll see businesses looking for writers to develop copy for different types of media. That’s where we’re going. And I love to see that you’re right on the cutting edge, as usual! Looking forward to the upcoming series.

  8. says

    Jason Ball makes a good point on being able to effectively reach your audience authentically and clearly so that they actually *get* your message.

    Looking forward to the series.

  9. says

    As a professional Web Writer, I have to say my “heck yes!” answer to your question is completely biased. Although, personally, the biggest challenge I find with web copywriting is making it visually appealing on a website.

    The medium is very different from print in terms of how people read on a screen vs. paper. Visual appearance should be a definite consideration when writing for the web.

  10. says

    If a viewer of my paintings gets distracted by the brush strokes I’ve failed. It’s like bad grammar. Good copywriting will always be vital if copyrighting is to be heard or read at all. The words should be invisible while conveying their message.

  11. says

    If you can’t write well, don’t write at all. The quickest way to lose anyone’s attention is to ramble on for paragraphs before you get to your point.

    Keep it short and simple.

  12. says

    Such a great topic, Brian! Oh good, I am not alone. I have been feeling a little overwhelmed because it seems as though the evolution of sharing one’s knowledge and point of view online is increasing and expanding at such a dramatic rate. It feels as though there is a shift coming on as more and more people turn to blogs and information sites for so many of their interests. In order to attract and keep their interest it seems to be almost imperative to incorporate more than one method of communication to readers. Learning the best ways to present information to one’s readership is so helpful. I always enjoy your perspective and learn from your copyright expertise – I am so looking forward to the series. Thank you for your help to stay ahead of the curve!

  13. says

    Time constraints and best practices of multimedia learning make it even more important for effective copy writing. Five minutes isn’t much, so your copy better spark. You better drop unnecessary words. Your script better compliment the graphics. Just create ONE video storyboard & tutorial and you will see how the process tests your skills and ultimately forces you to write better.

  14. says

    Brilliant minds!

    I have prepared a new programme on marketing for small business purely using audio and video – to be out next month.

    Whilst working on this, it struck me that text reduces in importance. And, I agree that emotional trigger points will still have to be there – but if the content is aligned to the passion of the deliverer then the emotion will be there too.

    I look forward to your series and will comment and tweet as required.

    Follow me on twitter.com/karenpurves

  15. says

    Good point but take it farther. Copywriting has always been the thing that tied the ‘presentation’ together, accompanying graphics on a package, screen shots on a ad, and so on.The ability to add the right words to convey the complete thought becomes more important, not less.

  16. says

    I love that blogs allow a mix of copywriting and multimedia. It’s what sets them apart from static forms of communication like books

  17. says

    If a viewer of my paintings gets distracted by the brush strokes I’ve failed. It’s like bad grammar. Good copywriting will always be vital if copyrighting is to be heard or read at all. The words should be invisible while conveying their message.

  18. says

    Best you could make changes to the webpage subject Does Copywriting Matter to the Multimedia Web? | Copyblogger to more generic for your content you create. I liked the post even sononetheless.


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