Copy vs. UX vs. Creative Writing: What is the difference?

I once read that everything creative combined with strategy is advertising. And everything creative without strategy is art. I love this idea because It helped me understand the difference.

Copywriting

Copywriting is what marketers do to educate, help or persuade customers with words. They research an audience and make sure to mimic their language. Using their pain points to show empathy. Then they use a call to action to tell them to either buy now, schedule a call, or add the product to their shopping cart. Copywriting has a million formulas, but what I always look for is clarity. Simple language, short sentences, honest information, and strong hooks. People want to understand things fast and navigate through the internet with ease. Not trying to decipher what the message is.

Photo by Jacqueline Smith

UX Writing

Here’s where UX writing comes in or user experience writing. This is a new type of copywriting. It uses a very short amount of text to give context to a landing page or site. Let’s say you’re downloading an eBook, and you’re not sure if it’s FREE or if you need to put in your credit card information. You see a small text below the download button that says: “don’t worry, it’s 100% free, and we don’t need your bank information.” That simple but effective text could mean a big deal to get conversions or not.

Another thing that UX writing does is that it helps users navigate through apps. Imagine you’re trying to get an Uber, and you can’t figure out how to ask for a car. The text uses big words and long sentences that frustrate you rather than help you get what you want. Something so simple as: “where do you want to be picked up?” and “where do you want to go?” is effective. Then the text over the button that states: “find my ride.” Is enough for you to have a stress-free experience.

In other words, UX is that. It makes your first encounter with an app or site, a walk in the park.

Photo by Anthony Shkraba

Creative Writing

Creative writing has eight elements that must exist to be successful. There is no strategy involved whatsoever. It’s something that comes out of your imagination. 

  1. Characters
  2. Setting
  3. Plot
  4. Story
  5. Visual descriptions
  6. Underlying theme
  7. Point of view
  8. Dialogue

For some writers, there are more than eight and it’s ok. I’m working on these first because it is a lot to handle. If you ever do this in your life you’re going to feel like a god. You’re giving life to a character and placing him in the worst-case scenario. You’re describing emotions, senses, and people in a way you wouldn’t have imagined.

Creative writing allows you to explore all sorts of problems. The only limit is your imagination. That’s why it’s so powerful to me. You can use all types of sentences in creative writing. Yet, I also like to keep the language human and easy to understand.

But words are subjective and interpreted by others in a million ways. My beta-readers create a whole different perspective in their minds. All with different ideas and opinions. It’s awesome to hear their feedback.

In the world of writing, there is an infinite number of styles to create a specific message. When you work with words it’s easy to get lost and believe that everybody will understand what you wrote. Trust me, that doesn’t happen.

Even when you think that your communication is accurate; it’s always important to seek a second opinion.

Words in marketing must be clear and to the point. Sentences must follow the basic structure we all learn at school.

Subject + Verb + Predicate.

This is the best piece of advice I can give you. Hope you enjoyed this article; I’m fascinated by all sorts of writing. Hope to see you at the next entry! Thank you so much for your support.

Past Posts!

Published by Aarón Nava

Born in México City, 1987. Aaron has a bachelor's degree in Advertising and Media from the Technological University of México. He has worked for several advertising agencies where he specialized in inbound and content marketing. He's currently working at MÁS VALE SABER where he focuses on creating valuable content that attracts, converts, and delights costumers. He's passonate about books and creative writing.

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