How do I become a copywriter in an advertising agency? What do I need? What will be my prospects? How much will I make?
You can have a degree in any subject to become a copywriter in an advertising agency. The most important thing is that you must have the skills, aptitudes and interests what a copywriter requires. Here’s a glimpse of what you would need: Written communication skills has to be excellent – in English and good if also in a regional language. Loads of creativity and wide imagination. Ability to visualize concepts and demonstrate in writing. Ability to draw metaphors. Good presentation skills- ability to present ideas and convince. A real interest in advertising. You should have knack of watching ads and analyzing them as to what the ad wants to say, to whom it wants to say, etc. Keen interest in various art forms like cinema, drama, music and a good degree of awareness on various fields like politics, religion, history, economics, Indian culture and ethos, nature, and human psychology, etc. You may do well if you have a graduate or post graduate degree in English / a graduate degree in English or any other subject followed by a post graduate degree / diploma in Communication, Mass Communication or Advertising. If you want you can do a course in creative writing too. But remember nothing helps unless you have the abilities and interests. There is a large no. of excellent copywriters in the industry who do not have any of the above qualifications. Prospects are unlimited if you have the abilities and interests. Advertising being a creative field, career growth does not depend on the number of years of experience. It depends on your performance. You have to make your mark. You will have to create effective and memorable ads, which catch the fancy of the target customers and make them buy the products. If you have the abilities, you can do it within two years in advertising. If you can prove your worth you will rise very fast from a Junior copywriter to a senior copywriter, from a senior copywriter to a copy chief/ creative supervisor, from a creative supervisor to a creative director. Rise from a junior copywriter to a creative director is possible within 4-5 years if you have the abilities and if you prove it. You will also have ample opportunities to move into film making, authoring books, ad film making creating music videos, producing television software –all are very lucrative professions. You can also become a creative consultant on your own or join a creative consulting agency. As far as the salary is concerned, the beginning could be pretty bad. The payment may be as low as Rs.2, 500 a month. But if you have the abilities and if you can prove your worth, sky is the limit. You can grow to senior copywriter with Rs 30,000 a month in 2 years time.