Content Writing vs Copywriting: What’s the Difference?

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If you’re looking for a job that involves writing skills, then there’s plenty of fish in the sea for you. Creating content for the web is one of the most popular occupations in the world right now. But before you can begin, you need to figure out what style fits you most. So, content writing vs copywriting…which one is for you and what are the differences?

In this post, we are going to shed some light on each of these two writing styles, so you can figure out where you’re heading. After reading it, you’ll understand the opportunities that a career in content marketing has in stock for you based on your preference and training. It could be either of the two or maybe even both.

Let’s find out!

What is content writing?

Content writing usually involves long-form content marketing. As a content writer, you produce written content (you can mix it with multimedia, too) that has the purpose to inform, entertain and/or educate. But the main scope is always to share valuable information that your readers can use in real life.

Every time you write, you need to ask yourself how your content will be helpful to people. So, learn who your audience is and what topics would be of interest to them.

Content writing is about creating specific, long-term content that aims to teach something new to readers or entertain the audience (e.g. humorous content).

If you’re writing for a company, your content still needs to tick all of the above so you can call yourself a content writer. Each company has its own editorial principles (like the tone of voice, style, layouts, topics of interest), so you need to pay attention to these details before choosing your workplace.

What can you provide as a content writer?

  • Blog articles (tutorials, guides, lists, editorials, interviews, case studies, statistics, user-generated content)
  • Newspaper and magazine articles
  • Books and eBooks
  • Newsletters
  • Podcasts/vlogs /television reports
  • Documentation
  • Social media posts

What is copywriting?

Copywriting, on the other side, has a direct and very specific goal, which is to sell. It’s usually shorter than its counterpart. Actually, sometimes copywriting implies comprising your message in the simplest and most concise way because people are not too keen on spending much time on a piece of advertisement.

Copywriting is basically an aim-and-hit type of content.

When you’re working as a copywriter for a brand, your writing is supposed to bring new customers on board and urge them to take action on your company’s products or services.

What can you provide as a copywriter?

  • Advertisements
  • Content for web pages (for instance, the presentation page of a product or service)
  • Scripts for commercials (like television and radio)
  • Scripts for video content
  • Slogans and mottos
  • Product descriptions
  • Press releases
  • Copy for promotional articles (internal or external)
  • Content for physical items (postcards, billboards, catalogs, brochures, or sales letters)
  • Social media posts to drive action

The difference between content writing vs copywriting

You probably already got the main idea reading this far about what these two jobs are meant for and how they differ from each other, but let’s put together all the key points that you need to have in mind when you set out to write for either purpose.

So here’s content writing vs copywriting in a mirror, with everything they entail:

Content writing

Informs and educates


Long-term results

Long-form content

Aims for information

Involves basic SEO knowledge

Brings organic traffic

Builds communities




Immediate results

Short-form content

Aims for persuasion

SEO knowledge is not required

Brings sales and leads

Drives instant action

Let’s elaborate!

✍️ Content writing’s role is to create a long-term business that, over time, brings out people who become loyal to your brand and services. Usually, if content writing is your choice, then you would only see results in a few years if you keep publishing several times a week.

But, once it picks up, you are able to build communities of people who will love your content and trust your advice. You can still promote your offers, just in a more passive fashion, by slowly adding to your foundation brick-by-brick. Your community will eventually turn into customers and so your profitability will increase.

So, the results don’t come overnight. You need to plant the seed and wait a while, but once you reap the fruits, your brand will be lasting around for a long period of time.

💰 On the other side, copywriting is about selling something in a short time span, which doesn’t necessarily imply that those who take action will turn into regular followers. You will just get customers right on the spot, for that specific campaign you’re advertising at that moment.

Assuming that you already have a business in place, copywriting will promote your individual projects. If you don’t have a business (or you’re just starting out) but need to promote something, copywriting won’t build a community of people with interest in your brand in the long term.

So, if these people buy your product now as a result of a good marketing campaign, you shouldn’t expect them to come back to following you and checking your updates regularly (unless they’re already long-established fans of your brand).

Most of the new people who will see your campaign will just take action and leave if they’re only interested in that specific service you’re offering at that moment and not in your business values as a whole.

But copywriting doesn’t exclude communities. You can have a loyal community around your brand and still need copywriting to promote and sell your products.

Simply put, you:

  • build a trustworthy brand with content writing
  • keep your community engaged via content writing
  • showcase and sell your products or services with good copywriting

That’s why content writing and copywriting are two essential methods to build and keep your business alive for a very long time. If you can do both, the better for your company because you can achieve big things when you use them together (for example, in the same piece of content).

content writing vs copywriting

Conclusion on content writing vs copywriting

While content writing and copywriting are far from being identical on any level – writing style, skills involved, purpose, format – you can still do both with a bit of training and exercise.

Both techniques count when it comes to building and maintaining a profitable brand because a piece of content that mixes them together can provide more efficient results for your business.

That being said, polish your writing and go make a living out of it. It will be worth it, no matter which way you’re heading.

And in case you’re wondering, the blog post that you’re reading right now is an example of content writing. But if you go to the landing page for our Neve WordPress theme, you can see our copywriting in action.

Which kind of content marketing do you prefer and why? Please share your opinion with us down below, in the comments.

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