How Philosophy Has Helped me Become a Different Kind of Copywriter

Unlike most of my fellow copywriters, I didn’t graduate from a high-level communication or marketing school, neither did I followed journalistic studies. But I did pursue a university curriculum in Humanities and Social Sciences that led me to turn my passion for reading and writing into my dream job.

Some professionals may be kind of reluctant when I first tell them that I graduated from a curriculum in Philosophy. It appears that those 5 years actually gave me the best tools to work as a copywriter.

I Developed some of the most efficient writing skills

Indeed, when you work as a copywriter you need to master the ability to write. However, in order to write you need to understand all the grammar and punctuation rules of your language. You must see the words for what they are and comprehend every little implication of them. Choosing specifically a word is literally the core of the job as you choose to express that specific idea and not another. And for that, you also need to know a wide variety of words and ideas, from your language, but even from others, as it can help you widen your thinking.

For all of that, Philosophy is a great teacher. When studying Philosophy, you actually learn how to think, and how to organize your thinking in the best way possible regarding your idea. This means you must be very cautious about the words you choose because one concept does not equal another and can lead to a total misunderstanding of what you are expressing. So, you often find yourself diving into the meanings of the most common everyday words that you think you know, or getting into this old Greek etymology book to find the original sense of a word or its origin and comparing it to its Latin root in order to be sure of every implication in what you’re about to say or write. In the end, you find yourself having great knowledge about the words you use and you get to express clearly the ideas you have. Especially when you can associate your writing skills with the ability to analyze and to synthesize.

I grew remarkable analytical and synthetical skills

Studying Philosophy means to be confronted with hundreds of ideas, theories, and above all texts and excerpts that you need to unravel, to dissect to its essential core. So you must learn how the sense of a word impacts the sense of a sentence and create implicit premises and presuppositions over an idea. Then, you get to understand the link between the sentence and the paragraph, which links itself to the chapter, which links to the part of the book, and it goes on and on until you can unravel all of the logical paths that have been created by the author. Finally, after that, you have to sum everything up in a cleared, ordered way so that anyone can understand what has been said.

By doing so days after days, you come to a point where it is perfectly possible to perceive each implication almost immediately and to extract the core of an idea in the blink of an eye.

As a Copywriter, it is almost a mandatory skill to be able to analyze and synthesize. It is thanks to these skills that you can problematize anything and understand what is working or not in your strategy. I get to a better understanding of the users’ mind and of the products’ strategy by accessing the core of their identity. This is how you can change what needs to be changed and implement anything around a designed identity. It can make a huge difference in the creation of your content as you can create exactly what perfectly fits, especially if you are able to use those two skills as a tool to properly shape concrete issues and collect the appropriate resources to iron it out.

I learned how to find the best resources and how to work from it

When you’ve identified a valuable issue, you must formulate it in a way that allows you to understand every field that must be analyzed and from that, you can lead your research in the best way possible. You have to be able to collect information on each field of your problem and then to put everything together to come with a solution.

Philosophy properly is where you learn how to formulate good questions. Good questions allow good answers. It is when you have identified the concrete issues that you can understand in which field you must engage and where you need to find a solution. It makes it easier to find resources when you know what to look for.

Creating content is also about being able to explore the available data, to explore the web, to dive into the multitude of content that the world can give us continuously. And from that content, choose only the best, seek for the inspirational one and finally create something different, something that fits with our point of view, with ourselves. One of the advantages of the university curriculum is that by doing research, you learn to work from international resources.

The advantage of working from international resources is that you can access content from all over the world, some of it may still be unknown in your own country. Thanks to that you can easily understand the trends all over the world and the repercussion they will have on your market or on your country. It gives you a capacity of adaptability and above all, of anticipation. This, coupled with an inherent curiosity enhanced by a multi-field curriculum in philosophy and nothing seems impossible to write about!

Philosophy led me to be able to write about everything, or almost

Philosophy is one of those fields that can be applied to everything. Be it politics, sciences, history, arts, psychology, moral, ethics, language or a huge amount of field of study, you can work about it when studying philosophy. In this order, you need to have some sort of inherent curiosity that allows you to dive completely into a subject that you know nothing about until you acquire a good knowledge of it.

In the end, you become able to get good knowledge about almost everything and be a specialist of anything you want. This is an undeniable quality for a copywriter as it means that there are absolutely no limits to what you can do. And if a specialization is needed, you can acquire it in no time!

To put it in a nutshell, I would deeply recommend to anyone who writes to have a quick look at this too often rejected field that is philosophy. Not only will it give you headaches, but it will open your mind to new ways of considering ideas, of expressing them and it will allow you to have a brand new perspective over the market and over your job!

UX Writer / Copywriter based in Paris - Graduated in Philosophy, studying Anthropology & psychoanalysis. Life student

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