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Do You Need A Degree To Be A Copywriter?



Hi, I'm Frankie - a 24 year old copywriter from Belfast.


And I’m the proud owner of an English with Sociology degree. I studied for three long years to get it during a pandemic and have a spenny piece of paper and hefty student loan to show for it.


And it was unnecessary.*


Allow me to explain.


Since I was a kid, I always loved writing. I filled countless notebooks with stories, poems, song lyrics and fan fiction that, with any luck, have been ‘accidentally’ thrown away.


So, when it came to deciding on a career, it was obvious.


I had to go to university to get an English degree because that’s what I had to do to become a writer… Right?


Wrong.


I was lucky enough to score a full time copywriting job right out of university, and I was surprised that most of the fantastic writers on my team didn’t have a degree.


So, that left me with the same question you’re probably asking right now:


Do you really need a degree to become a copywriter?


*Disclaimer: My parents, if you’re reading this, my degree was super duper useful and not at ALL a waste of money like everyone said it would be. Honest. Tooooottaally worth every penny.



What Is A Copywriter?


To put it simply, copywriting is writing for brands, from Facebook ads to blog posts and marketing emails.


In other words, it’s the coolest job in the world.


All that stuff that makes you chuckle, from the cheeky RyanAir social media posts to the iconic words on Innocent Smoothies packaging, was written by a copywriter.


Now you know what a copywriter does, let’s talk about what you need to become one.



How Do You Become A Copywriter From Scratch?


When you go to job sites like LinkedIn or Indeed, you’ll find plenty of copywriting opportunities - many of which will not ask for a degree.


But, they will usually ask to see the dreaded ‘P’ word.


Nope, not that P word, mind out of the gutter.


Portfolio.


DON’T YOU DARE LET THAT SCARE YOU OFF.


I know it sounds like a Catch 22 - can’t get the job without experience, can’t get experience without a job.


But you CAN become a copywriter and build up a portfolio starting from 0.


No degree, no experience, nothing.


You can build a portfolio full of spec work which is essentially “if I did work for this company this is what I’d write” work (and if you’re not sure where to start, keep on reading bestie because we’ll show you how).



So, Do You Need A Degree To Become A Copywriter?


Fuck no.


Anyone can become a copywriter without a degree or experience.


If you’ve got a relevant degree, that’s great. You’ve picked up lots of valuable skills at University that will come in useful in copywriting, like becoming a polished writer, thorough researcher and drinking game champion.


But if you don’t have one, you can ABSOLUTELY still become a successful copywriter.


Hey, don’t take my word for it. Here’s a lil proof.


Plenty of successful people don’t have degrees. Richard Branson, Mark Zuckerberg, and most importantly, lots of our super talented Word Tonic Members. 


That’s the beauty of copywriting - there’s lots of paths that can get you there.


Carolyn - The Non-Uni Path:



That’s right, even Word Tonic’s powerhouse 23 year old founder dropped out of uni twice. And look at her now! Here’s what she did instead:


  • Built up a portfolio: Carolyn spent a month putting together a portfolio that was irresistible.

  • Reached out to brands directly: If you don’t ask, you don’t get. She didn’t wait for opportunities to come up, she went after ‘em.

  • Knew her worth: Carolyn knew her work was worth more than the pennies ‘junior’ copywriters are often offered and she said a polite ‘fuck this’ to being undervalued.

  • Networked: Creating relationships is SO IMPORTANT. You never know who knows someone who’s gran’s dog’s swimming instructor needs a copywriter.

  • Created a community: with other like minded kick-ass copywriters to share their expertise and become top notch writers (more on that later).


Izi - The ‘Maybe I Won’t Use My Degree’ Path:



From not knowing what copywriting was in November 2022 to becoming an AWARD WINNING COPYWRITER BOSS BABE GENIUS in just a matter of months. Here’s what she did:


  • She DIDN’T let lack of experience hold her back.

  • Jumped into the Word Tonic community and worked her booty off.

  • Networked like her life depended on it on LinkedIn

  • Landed her first freelance gig just THREE TINY MONTHS after starting.


BJ - The Uni Path:



BJ is one of our members who is a graduate. He also did a lot of extras outside of uni to help him on his journey. His journey included:


  • A relevant degree: BJ went to uni for advertising, which he found pretty helpful.

  • A cool as shit community: BJ used the Word Tonic resources to help him network. Which helped lead to…

  • A fancy ass award: (yep, we’ve got another award winner in our midst!)


As you can see, there’s no right or wrong way to become a copywriter.


HOWEVER.


All of these successful copywriters have something in common. 


Gold star for you if you caught on already - they’re all members of Word Tonic.



What Is Word Tonic?


We’re a copywriting community and online learning platform for Gen-Z copywriters just like you (there are 500 of us so far all over the world, and we’ve always got room for more).


For just £15.99 - £9.99 for your first month! - you can:


  • Build your portfolio from scratch

  • Get access to a plethora (there goes that English degree at work - take that Mum) of masterclasses from industry experts

  • Be added to our database of writers


And MORE stuff like:


🧠Live online masterclasses and Q&As where you'll LITERALLY learn from copywriters in brands like Nat Geo, Google, and Hotel Chocolat


💯Archive of recorded masterclasses and resources and a big fat hub of tips written by loads of members


💫A Discord where you can chat + ask for advice from more than 400+ young copywriters who've been there, done that and respond to briefs to build up your portfolio


✍Monthly writing challenges that can be added to your portfolio (plus, you can win prizes worth $40).


🔥25% discount on an accredited copywriting course created by London marketing agency, The Creative Copywriter


Wanna weigh up the pros and cons?:


Word Tonic

University

Low cost 

Specifically focuses on copywriting

Low Commitment

Tough entry requirements

So, whatcha waiting for? Make like a duck and go get that bread.


Grab your first month discounted membership here (you can cancel anytime) and go get that bread xoxo


 

Frankie Higginson




Hi everyone! I'm Frankie Higginson, I'm 24 from Belfast, Northern Ireland. I've recently just finished a year abroad in New York City (the fun fact I will be milking and using in introductions for the rest of my life), and prior to that I was working in social media and as a copywriter for a few years in marketing agencies.

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