How much do copywriters make?

How long is a piece of string?

It’s not an easy question to answer as freelance, I’ve found, is flood or drought, feast or famine.

You can get commissioned for a series of blog posts and have a hefty wedge of money deposited in your account. You blithely write and deliver the 10 or 20 requested, then after gorging, go hungry for a while.

Some copywriters, attached to major firms on salaries or retainers, make a lot of money (so I’m told); others, like me, when I was starting out, earn very little.

Some copywriters make £70 for 1000 words, others £30, some a £1000.

The point is that earnings are shrouded in mystery because the first rule of writing is not that you don’t talk salary, but that you don’t state rates, because inevitably you get undercut.

I like to think of my service though, as a professional writer, in terms of hourly rates.

A 300 word blog post, following a brief, creating a compelling title, creating accurate and engaging copy, rarely takes me an hour.

But, particularly if it’s an unfamiliar topic, or one with some complexity, it will take longer.

I research you see. I read round the topic, quickly skimming and scanning similar pieces not to plagiarise but to form a unique post with content tilt or slant.

Say someone asks to write 300 words on Acid Reflux, I’d spend 30 minutes reading around the topic, before I begin putting finger to keyboard. I don’t make notes on what I’ve read or structure it mechanistically but begin the first draft.

That is sent to clients and they make suggestions for changes.

That 300 word blog on the oesophagus and acid effectively takes 60 to 90 minutes and, breaking Write Club rules, is charged at £40.

If I get one blog post at £40 every weekday, I make £800 a month gross and then, after tax and overheads, about £28 a day which is not really a lot.

Of course, I supplement this with other monetary activities, like managing social media accounts, building websites with Paul and 321 Websites, pimping LinkedIn profiles, exam marking, which all go into the salary pot.

What I’m saying though is that I don’t make a lot of money as a copywriter – I wish I did.

I made much more money as a teacher of English, Head of English and Assistant Headteacher, but money is not everything.

I love copywriting, I love the freedom of self-employment and that modest copywriter salary, doing something I love, is worth far more than a £50,000 pa salary.

How much do copywriters make?

This one makes enough to smile every day with the derived satisfaction.

What do you think, Kyle?