about the client
Study.com is an online video platform for K-12, college students, and working adults which bills itself as the simplest and most efficient way to learn online. Each month, the platform’s online courses, study tools, and teaching materials are used by over 30 million students both as classroom reinforcement and as a substitute for online tutoring.
I’ve had a working relationship with Study.com for over a year and have written everything from webpage copy (covered below) and email campaigns to product overviews and course descriptions.
Scope of Work
Writing with Purpose
Study.com has a problem that many other wildly successful brands also experience: They serve more than one customer.
While there aren’t many downsides to this sort of problem, it means that some measure of caution needs to be taken when creating content for a specific audience.
As with every client, I always aim to write with purpose. In the case of Study.com and other larger brands that I work with, that always starts with a simple question:
Who is your target audience?
During the early stages of any project, I partner with decision-makers and organizational stakeholders to nail that down. With Study.com, I focus carefully on each of their targeted personas to ensure that the copy I create matches the user who is likely to see it.
For example, on the Working Scholars web page (below), I focused the copy toward adults who were focused on earning a degree after high school and highlighted solutions to common objections that working adults often cite as obstacles to continuing education. These points wouldn’t work for a middle or high school student, and that’s okay! This program isn’t designed for them.
More Than Words
While it’s not the case with every client, Study.com usually has a pretty good idea of what they’re looking for in terms of copy. They give me an idea of what they’re looking for, and I’ll clarify if I have any questions before I get started on a draft.
This client often provides an overview of key talking points and (occasionally) a design mockup. These are powerful signposts for a copywriter because they provide a better view of the completed project.
When I have a mockup on hand, I’ll write the copy to fit the design. I often make suggestions about better ways to clarify a design or reinforce the messaging. In the example you see here, the stats were added after I pushed the stakeholders to back up what they were saying with some kind of data.
For many readers, this kind of information drives home the point more effectively than words ever will. When I’m on a project, I often speak up about opportunities like this to help my clients achieve maximum value from their projects.
Copy Read by Millions
When done correctly, effective copy is only visible when it needs to be.
What does that mean? It means no strange spelling mistakes, typos, or stray periods.
Those errors get noticed, and too many errors can damage the authenticity and trustworthiness of your brand.
Not good, especially when your website copy will be read by millions of users on a monthly basis.
To date, I’ve written copy for dozens of pages with Study.com. Some of these are high profile pages, like the Study.com home page. Some are enrollment program pages and/or overview pages for key tests like the ACT, SAT, and ASVAB. In every case, I do my best to produce error-free copy that feels right for Study.com readers.
At the end of the day, that’s what it’s all about.