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  • http://www.thesocialsyndicate.com/ Michael Naughton

    Great topic Jeff. Agree with all 50 (esp. #26 & #28). Also enjoyed your ebook on blogging. Best, Michael

  • Danimal713

    I have worked with Brad Shorr before. I would have to say he is one of the most versatile writers around. Great job on this post Brad. If I had to add one to this list, I would include the ability to step outside of their comfort zone. It is not easy to write day after day, but knowing when to take a leap of faith and understanding the risk vs. reward scenario can really prove to be huge when it comes to acquiring relevant internet traffic. Great job Brad!

    • http://www.straightnorth.com Brad Shorr

      Thank you very much! Your comfort zone point is an article in itself. So very important.

  • Nick Hodge

    I definitely think “without perfectionism” is important. If you’re too critical of your own work you’ll never publish anything for fear of it not being good enough. Now, I’m not saying don’t try and do your very best work, but in the end, having the courage to put yourself out there is half the battle. Be proud of what you produce.

    • http://www.straightnorth.com Brad Shorr

      Courage is right! When I started writing online I remember times when my finger literally trembled when hitting the Publish button.

  • http://markitwrite.com/ Kerry Butters

    As a very passionate writer I’m very happy to say that I can fully identify with this list Jeff – thanks!

  • Michael Kilgore

    A copywriter has rhythm — not for dancing but for writing. Vary the sentence length/structure and let your copy sing.

  • Alison Hardy

    Love it! I was nodding all the way through. When I reached the end, I thought “Jeez, I’m so happy I’m a copywriter”. Thanks for reminding me how lucky I am to do this wonderful job.

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  • Kelly Boyer Sagert

    I’d also say flexibility (meant in a different way from your #12). You may start out with a plan on what to write and how to write it, but will need the ability to quickly switch gears if necessary (our legal department won’t let us say ABC; oh, we just stopped offering that service; and so forth).

    • http://www.straightnorth.com Brad Shorr

      Excellent point, Kelly. Whenever the project involves a lot of people doing edits and internal reviews, changes are bound to happen. My only beef is when the review process makes the output worse rather than better.

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  • http://www.velocitypartners.co.uk/our-blog/ Doug Kessler

    Great post! The only one I don’t like is number 47. But the other 49 are spot on.

    • http://www.straightnorth.com Brad Shorr

      Doug, thanks for reading and commenting. I’ll take 49/50 all day. :)

  • Matt Litkie

    What about coffee? there is nothing in here about coffee…

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  • Mike Sullivan

    I’d remove #32. Pleasing algorithms may make you a more effective blogger, but it has nothing to do with great writing.

  • Gordana Stok

    A great writer is a great thinker.

  • Gordana Stok

    A great writer is a great thinker.

  • http://martydickinson.com/ Marty Dickinson

    GREAT copywriters sell their own stuff – Anyone can learn how to become a copywriter. But, the few copywriters that ROCK conversion rates, as opposed to those that just put cool sounding phrases on a page, cut their teeth by selling their own products online. Put food on your own table with your copywriting before attempting to do the work for clients and you will approach the whole process with a different attitude…and you’ll have better results too.

  • Jake Parent

    Really awesome post. I also like all of these except 47. In today’s world of fast paced information overload, I appreciate bluntness more than ever.

  • http://www.straightnorth.com Brad Shorr

    Everybody: Thanks for all the comments and great ideas. When I had 50 items listed out, I thought I had gone a little overboard. But you’ve come up with several more great additions already. So I guess here’s another one to add to the list — great copywriters never run out of ideas!

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  • http://www.remotedman.wordpress.com/ Darius Douglass

    50 attributes is a lot. You could probably condense them to 10. Like 41 and 42.
    I would add that the editing process never ends even when your work has been published. Writers are very critical of their own work. For instance, If I review a piece I had published 3 months ago, and find a grammatical error, I will correct it. That is the perfectionist part of a writer.

  • Akash Agarwal

    It’s a great tips for me. All the points are very important to be a great copywriter. I really learned a lot from it.

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  • Sarah Bauer

    Great copywriters are intuitive by nature. This quality gives them the power to understand what people want, and how they relate to the world around them.

    Great post, exhaustive and interesting list!

    Sarah Bauer
    Navigator Multimedia

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  • Kelly Smith


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  • http://copywritercollective.nl/ Collective Freelancer

    Well written, Brad! Innovation and Ingenuity will keep freelance copywriters on top of their game. See us on http://copywritercollective.nl

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  • Mike Myers

    Just seeing this…great list! I do agree with Mike Sullivan on #32: writing for SEO is just unnatural and can confuse/turn off the reader. Hopefully, Hummingbird, etc. will help with that. Thanks for this.

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  • http://www.looklikeanexpert.com Elisabeth Kuhn

    Looks like great copywriters are miracle workers as they have to reconcile so many different and sometimes contradictory characteristics. I’ve got ways to go…

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  • http://www.paraphrasingmatters.com/ Chris Gayle

    Excellent Point When I reached the end, I thought “Jeez, I’m so happy I’m a copywriter”

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