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What Is The Difference Between Copy And Content?

A Guide for Small Business Owners

What Is The Difference Between Copy And Content?

As a small business owner, you wear multiple hats every day. From managing operations to handling customer inquiries, your to-do list seems never-ending. But there’s one task that often gets pushed to the backseat.

Content creation. 

It is discouraging to think about spending hours crafting compelling copy and valuable content for your business website, blog, or email list, especially when you’re already stretched thin. 

That is why today we’re talking about the difference between copy and content, why mastering both is crucial for your business’s success, and if outsourcing content creation is right for you.

Are Copy And Content The Same?

This can be confusing because, let’s face it, the two words are often used interchangeably. It might surprise you but copy and content are different, and they serve distinct purposes in your marketing strategy.

Copy is all about persuasion and conversion—it’s the words you use to guide someone to complete an action. This action may be to buy your products or services, subscribe to your email list, book a consultation call, or engage with a social media post.

On the other hand, content is more informative. It focuses on providing value to your audience, educating them, and building trust and relationships. There is often no persuasion involved and typically no call for the reader to do anything beyond reading.

Sometimes it helps to envision copy as the trail guide leading your audience toward a specific destination, while content serves as the scenic path that invites them to immerse themselves in the journey. Both are important to connecting with your brand on a deeper level.

The Role of Copywriting

Intentional copywriting can greatly influence your content strategy and marketing efforts. Whether it’s your website copy, landing pages, or email marketing campaigns, compelling copy is essential for capturing your audience’s attention and persuading them to take action. 

Copywriting techniques can also be added to pieces traditionally considered informative content. This takes an educational blog, for example, and elevates it to copy by including emotional and persuasion techniques – a lighter version – that gently guides the reader until the end, where a gentle call to action is waiting. 

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You probably get the gist.

Imagine you’re hiking through a dense forest. Your copy is the signpost guiding your customers along the correct trail, leading them to your desired destination — a purchase, a sign-up, or a click-through. Without clear and persuasive copy, your audience may wander off the path, distracted by other businesses with similar offers, products, or services and never fully committing to yours. 

The Essence of Content Creation

Now let’s consider content creation. Unlike copywriting, which focuses on selling, content creation is all about providing value and building relationships with your audience. Whether it’s blog posts, articles, videos, or social media content, valuable content educates, entertains, and inspires your audience, positioning your brand as a trusted authority in your industry.

However, as we mentioned previously when you partner with a professional copywriter, you can transform traditionally informative content into lighter versions of copy to ensure that all of your pieces are working together to achieve your content and marketing goals.

Picture your content as the scenic viewpoints along the hiking trail—each piece offering a different perspective and enriching the journey for your audience. Now imagine those same scenic vistas with an unobtrusive sign that tells you a little about the view and what direction to head next. That is making content more… “copy light”.

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Understanding the Harmony Between Copy and Content

It was a fast trek, but we covered the basics of copy and content that business owners like yourself should know. Now you might be wondering how copy and content work together to create a cohesive marketing strategy. Do you need one more than another? Or both?

While copywriting and content creation serve different purposes, they’re not mutually exclusive. 

In fact, when done well, they complement each other, like two trails converging into one breathtaking vista.

Effective copy drives traffic and conversions, while valuable content nurtures relationships and fosters engagement. Together, they create a seamless experience for your audience, guiding them along the buyer’s journey from awareness to conversion.

The Impact on Small Business Growth

So, why does mastering both copy and content matter for your small business? Simply put, it’s the key to standing out in a crowded market and driving growth. 

Today’s consumers crave authenticity, value, and connection from the brands they choose to engage with. By mastering the art of compelling copy and valuable content, you will attract and retain customers and begin to differentiate your brand from the competition. 

It’s like blazing a new trail in the wilderness—forging your path to success amidst the noise and clutter of online businesses, e-commerce, ads, and more.

Empower Your Business with Professional Copy and Content

Now that you understand the difference between copy and content and their roles in digital content strategy and marketing, it’s time to take action.

Don’t let the burden of content creation hold you back from achieving your business goals. You can do it yourself, though it will take time and energy that might be better spent elsewhere. Or you can team up with a professional copywriter who understands your business vision, unique needs, and has the strategy to help you get there.

Whether you need help crafting compelling copy or creating valuable content, I’m here to support you every step of the way.

Ready to take the next step? Book a free 30-minute discovery call today to discuss your specific needs and explore how professional strategy and copywriting support can enrich your business.

Or, if you’re ready to dive deeper into your content strategy, consider scheduling a 1-hour consultation call for just $100. Let’s walk this path together and witness your business flourish.

So, what are you waiting for? Start today!

Featured Image Credit: Jens Lelie on Unsplash.


After 15 years working in web development and tech for government, higher education, and SaaS companies, Jacquelyn Van Sant brought her two greatest passions — writing and helping people — together to form Waymarks Web Solutions. Waymarks currently focuses on providing content strategy and copywriting services to small businessess and ghostwriting services to the tech industry.