7 Copywriter Interview Questions (With Example Answers)
By Indeed Editorial Team
Updated November 30, 2022
Published September 29, 2021
The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.
Copywriting can be a fulfilling career for someone who enjoys research, writing, marketing, or communications. You can write for brands you admire and learn about what goes into a successful marketing campaign. If you're pursuing a career in copywriting, it can be helpful to prepare for questions you may need to answer during future interviews. In this article, we discuss seven copywriter interview questions you may answer, explain why an interviewer may ask these questions, and provide sample answers to use as a guide.
7 copywriter interview questions
Copywriters create content for brands and businesses to communicate important information about the company to consumers. Employers want to know that they can trust their copywriters to represent the company and align with the brand message. During an interview, they can ask copywriter interview questions to determine the skill level of the professional applying for the role. These questions may address technical skills, like search engine optimization (SEO), grammar, and style guides, or more general skills, like how to deal with feedback and the ability to meet tight deadlines.
When preparing for your interview for a copywriting position, practicing your answers to general questions about your skills is helpful. You can plan answers to questions ahead of time so that during the interview you have well-thought-out examples for each skill. Here are some example copywriter interview questions you can use to prepare:
1. Are you familiar with our website?
A question about your familiarity with the brand helps the interviewer get an idea of your interest in the industry and your preparedness for the interview. Most copywriting projects require doing a little research before they begin, so this question can be a great place to show your ability to research and interpret information. When answering, be sure to mention the brand's publications and describe the type of content they produce.
Example: "I read a few blog posts on your company website to get an understanding of your brand voice and the type of content you produce. I noticed your content seems to be geared toward people who are unfamiliar with car jargon or the more technical aspects of shopping for cars. The posts I read had a friendly tone that provided a lot of information in simple terms, perfect for people who may find other resources intimidating. I found it to be very helpful, as a lot of content in that industry can be dense and hard to understand."
2. What strategies have you used to optimize your content for SEO?
SEO is an essential aspect of modern digital copywriting. Understanding SEO can help a brand's content get more traffic from consumers, which can drive sales. Your interviewer may make sure that you have this skill and that you understand its importance. Before your interview, brush up on the technical aspects of copywriting, including SEO strategies, so you can show off your knowledge to your interviewer.
Example: "I've learned a lot about SEO strategies in my previous role as a product description writer. I overhauled the SEO for the brand I was working with, meaning I had to rewrite all the descriptions so that they contained targeted keywords. I also implemented headline optimization on the product web pages and rewrote the meta descriptions to strengthen their SEO. Through these strategies, we increased our traffic by 60% and improve our search engine ranking."
3. What experience do you have adhering to style guides?
A style guide is a company's guide to the grammar, punctuation usage, and syntax it uses to establish tone in its copy. It may use a well-known style guide, like AP style, or it may create its own style guide. A brand relies on a copywriter to adhere to the style guide so that the copy is consistent throughout the brand. It's also essential to create the brand voice.
An interviewer may question your familiarity with style guides to see if you can adapt your writing style to their brand voice. Highlight previous style guides you used and how closely you studied them or adhered to their rules when writing copy.
Example: "I have experience working with general style guides, like the AP stylebook and the Chicago Manual of Style. I also have experience working with style guides that are specific to the brand. When working with a brand, I always read through their personalized style guide before I start writing. I keep it open in a tab constantly so that I can refer to it as I write. I find it saves time when I'm making style edits after writing the piece."
4. Have you worked as part of a team before?
Often, a copywriter works as a part of a marketing team. This means they collaborate on projects with peer copywriters, editors, and managers. Copywriters may need to use teamwork skills, so an interviewer may ask this question to determine if you can collaborate with others easily. When answering, think about previous experiences you have working with others on one project, as well as ways that the experience was positive and how the collaboration improved your final product.
Example: "I've worked with teams full of other marketing professionals and other copywriters in the past. Recently, I was working on a project where our team revamped the marketing strategy for a clothing company, rebranding itself as empowering to women. We worked as a team to find a specific brand voice that would appeal to young female professionals. We each contributed our own ideas and expertise to come up with a combined brand image and voice the client loved."
5. What experience do you have with content management systems?
Many teams work with content management systems, or CMS, which are software or online databases that manage content and upload it online. Copywriters should be familiar with the basics of using a CMS so that they can work with the systems their clients use. There are a variety of content management systems, and some companies even create their own, so it's important to be familiar with the basics and show that you can adapt to a new system. Consider what CMS you've used in the past and how quickly you could familiarize yourself with it.
Example: "I've worked with content management systems in the past, including a few of the most popular ones. In my previous position, I was using a CMS that was specialized for the company I was working for. I was able to use my previous experience with CMS to master the new system quickly. I'm confident that I can learn and master the CMS quickly to format and upload my content without issues."
6. What tools do you use to check your grammar and spelling?
Copywriters proofread their own work for grammar and spelling errors and to ensure it adheres to the style guide before they send it to their copy editors. There are a variety of browser plug-ins or software services that you can use to catch any mistakes you make while writing and editing. An interviewer may ask what tools you use to learn how familiar you are with the editing process. In your answer, list the tools you're familiar with and specify which tools you have found to be the most helpful in your writing process.
Example: "I currently use a browser extension that double-checks all my grammar and spelling. I can change the settings to adhere to the style guide I'm working with, and I can even designate if I'm writing in Canadian, American, or British English. I've used a few different tools in the past, so I'm familiar with different systems, but the extension I'm using now is the best I've found. I also read over everything I write for any grammar or awkward phrasing that the extension doesn't catch."
7. How do you respond to negative feedback from your editor?
Receiving feedback is a necessary part of copywriting. It helps you improve your writing and allows the client to correct any mistakes or deviations from the tone they notice in the original draft. Being able to handle constructive criticism and feedback that may be negative is an important skill for a copywriter. An interviewer may ask this question to determine if you're easy to work with. When answering, think about a time you received negative feedback and used it to improve your work.
Example: "I believe that feedback is a necessary part of the writing process, and I appreciate all constructive feedback because I know it improves the overall product. I usually try to respond to negative feedback by reading any notes or edits carefully and trying to apply them to my next draft. I may also reach out to the editor to clarify the purpose of the piece and questions I have about the edits. This can help speed along the editing process, and it can help me avoid mistakes in the future."
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