What Does a Copywriter Do Exactly?

What does a copywriter do exactly?

Good question.

First I’ll show you what an average copywriter does.

Then, if you want a day in the life of a successful copywriter, I’ll show you my routine.

What Your Average Copywriter Does

An average copywriter does 5 things:

  • Research
  • Outlining
  • Writing
  • Editing
  • Revisions


Great copy needs great research.

There are unlimited ways you can conduct research but here are few of my favorites:

  • Interviews
  • chatGPT
  • Forums
  • Product reviews
  • etc

If you can’t understand your niche or target audience, you can’t write great copy.

It’s like trying to sell a blind person glasses.

You can tell them about how amazing the frames are and how the lenses are glare resistant, but they won’t care.

You need to figure out exactly what they want.

To do that, you’ll need to become a market detective.

Learn their deepest darkest fears, what causes them pain, what they desire the most.

The only way to do that is through thorough research.

ChatGPT is going to give you an excellent starting point but interviews are going to uncover the best data.

Then you can use places like forums, review sections and surveys.

Here's an example:

If I want to sell my coaching program on Twitter Ghostwriting, I better address this concern in my copy.

Also this helps me understand my target audience my write blog posts already for their clients.

This is solid information I can address in a social media post or sales page.


Every copywriter has their own process but the best one’s create outlines.

An outline is just a word doc which takes chaos and turns it into order.

Everything you need to know about your target audience should be organized in this brief before you start writing sales pages, emails or scripts.

Outlines can vary in structure but can contain these elements:

  • What are we promising?
  • The problem
  • The solution
  • Reasons to believe
  • Customer Avatars
  • Primary avatar dream outcome
  • Primary avatar specific problems
  • Primary avatar specific solutions
  • Offers designed for your primary avatar
  • Sales argument

Once all of this information is clearly organized and collected, a copywriter will move on to the writing phase.

If you’re doing an outline for social media like Twitter (X), here’s an outline skeleton I use for long form content:

what does a copywriter do outline


This is where it boils down to basics.

You’re going to use your outline as a manual for writing your end product.

Every copywriter has a different process for writing.

Some copywriters like to write early in the morning because that’s when they’re most fresh.

Some like to listen to music while others need dead silence.

Throughout your journey you’ll understand what works best for you.


A general rule of thumb is to write first and edit later.

When you try to context switch from writing to editing this can disrupt your flow and make it difficult to crank out words.

I like to think of the editing process as if you’re stepping the reader through the content.

Each sentence needs to keep the reader engaged.

It’s more than just fixing typos.

It's about arranging your words for maximum impact. Sometimes, you might need to move sentences around or get rid of subheads that don't add value.

You may even find yourself writing additional content to refine your message.

Think of it as a puzzle - your goal is to make every piece fit perfectly, even though some pieces could fit in several places.


Revisions are a part of the copywriting journey, even for seasoned writers.

It's a team effort, with clients often chiming in with their thoughts.

Sometimes a client won’t like something and you’ll either need to push back or revise your copy.

They might drop feedback directly in your document or during a creative review session.

Although I’d recommend you avoid letting them do this.

Instead, show them milestones of your work so your flow doesn’t get sidetracked.

What Freelance Copywriters Do

Freelance writers aren’t much different from average copywriters apart from they have to manage the business.

They’re responsible for:

  • Finding clients
  • Invoicing
  • Project Management
  • Hiring

Finding Clients

You can make more money than an in-house copywriter but you’ll need to hunt for your food.

Finding clients can be challenging at first but with a personal brand, they come to you.

I’ve never had to send a single DM or cold email.

Because I’ve built an audience online, I get messages from CEOs and entrepreneurs who want to work with me.

At first, you might want to use gig sites like Upwork to make some short-term cash but if you want to crush it, you’ll need to start building a personal brand on social media.

One tactic I like to employ on Twitter is called a DM giveaway.

It's almost like a hand raiser.

For example, one of my students Mike Bolton did a DM giveaway on how he grew his Twitter account to over 11K followers.

A few people who replied to his giveaway were interested in his services and eventually became clients.


Freelancers, unlike full-timers, lack a finance team to handle payments.

To get paid, they must send invoices to clients. The task becomes less daunting with a simple invoice template.

I use Stripe invoicing to make it as easy as possible to get paid.

This method streamlines the process and makes it more manageable.

Sometimes you’ll get clients who pay on-time.

Other times, not so much.

Project Management

Project management certification might not be a must-have for a copywriter, but having some basic skills in this area can prove beneficial. It's all about keeping things organized and on track.

When you're juggling various tasks for different clients, knowing how to manage your calendar effectively becomes crucial.

Being proactive also helps. Regularly checking the status of your projects ensures you meet deadlines without breaking a sweat.

I like to use Notion to keep everything organized.

Example of my notion system I share with students for Ghostwriting


Once you get to a certain amount of clients, you’ll find there’s just not enough hours in the day.

Right around the $10,000 per month mark, you might be feeling stressed.

You’ve got two options:

  1. Charge more and work with fewer clients
  2. Hire some help

Hiring can get you to the next level.

You’ll go from freelancer to agency owner but that also comes with a set of headaches.

You need to manage a team and make sure the work is up to par.

It’s not for everyone.

Day In The Life Of A Successful Copywriter

How to become a millionaire copywriter:

  1. Wake up at 4:20am every day
  2. Sun your balls during a cold shower
  3. Drink 2.3 cups of black coffee
  4. ????
  5. Profit

Just kidding.

Here’s what I actually do:

  • Wake up
  • Hydrate
  • Sunlight
  • Lift heavy shit
  • Deep work sesh
  • 2 hours of Spanish classes

During that deep work sesh, I used to be writing copy for clients but now I’ve got a Twitter Ghostwriting Agency with talented people I’ve hired to do the work.

Feeling More Ambitious?

Entering the copywriting field might seem daunting, but it's not as tough as you think.

You can start earning within months, not years.

You don’t need a degree.

You just need to start.

Who is Dakota?

I show you how to build a high-paying creative business without doing work you hate.

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