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The Copywriter’s List Of 14 Essential Books They Should Read

What every copywriter worth their salt know, written here.

Copywriting, writing copy, also known as the art of selling with the written word, even more abstractly put out as writing precisely the features and, more importantly, benefits of your product, offering, or services.

Everyone thinks copywriting is simply written babble that can be done by anyone, that is, until they are finally put in front of the keyboard and told to type the words that will catch the attention, convert and, ultimately, sell. That’s when they choke and start sweating profusely.

Respect where respect is due. Copywriting requires more than a little inventiveness with words along with the strict adherence to the guidelines established for this discipline more than a century ago. Fear not, you can learn this easily by getting the books every copywriter should read before engaging in copywriting, check them out and learn something.

#1 The Copywriter’s Handbook: A Step-by-Step Guide to Writing Copy That Sells

The Copywriter's Handbook: A Step-by-Step Guide to Writing Copy That SellsGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

Filled with useful examples, this book includes sales psychology tips, practical writing strategies, and an especially useful section on how to write attention-grabbing headlines. The author also provides guidance for writing different kinds of copy, including print ads, direct mail, marketing collateral, commercials, and web copy. A classic read — not just for copywriters, but for people who write B2B copy on a daily basis, like business owners and marketing managers.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#2 Web Copy That Sells by Maria Veloso

Web Copy That Sells by Maria Veloso Get this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

It is a very easy to understand book on copywriting. The author has years of experience and knows what clicks. I have read this book a few times and always brush through the pages before writing an important sales copy.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#3 CA$HVERTISING by Drew Eric Whitman

CA$HVERTISING by Drew Eric Whitman Get this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

This book covers a lot of both the basic and advanced lessons for writing persuasive copy. From explaining the 9 human wants/needs, consumer psychology, how to convey value, up to how to make killer headlines, Cashvertising provides the reader with the essentials and core logic of how to write compelling copy.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#4 Cash Copy by Dr. Jeffrey Lant

Cash Copy by Dr. Jeffrey LantGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

Although he doesn’t credit these influences, this book covers many of the principles in the marketing classics of the first half of the 20th century (Caples, Hopkins, Collier, etc.) in a much more readable format. I found his focus on showing the customer benefits (rather than just bragging about your company) key in building my own marketing philosophy, decades ago.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#5 Call to Action by Bryan and Jeffrey Eisenberg

Call to Action by Bryan and Jeffrey EisenbergGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

This is the best thing I’ve read on marketing to specific personas–a much deeper level of connection with prospects that most marketers are still ignoring (at their peril). Once you know what personas you want to reach, you can craft powerful stories that touch their specific response points.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#6 Guerrilla Marketing to Heal the World by Jay Conrad Levinson

Guerrilla Marketing to Heal the World by Jay Conrad LevinsonGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

A thorough roadmap for marketing profitable products and services that help turn hunger and pvoerty into abundance, war into peace, catastrophic climate change into planetary balance, etc. Endorsed by Seth Godin, Chicken Soup’s Jack Canfield, the Executive Director of GreenBiz.com, and many others.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#7 Building a StoryBrand by Donald Miller

Building a StoryBrand by Donald MillerGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

As a copywriter, I’ve had a lot of luck following the basic framework that’s described in *Building a StoryBrand*. Miller’s customer-centric way of writing is very effective, and it’s helped many of my clients convert website visitors to paid clients. His framework is very easy to follow and it can be applied to just about any niche out there. If you’re a copywriter and you haven’t read this book yet, put it at the top of your reading list.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#8 How to Write Copy that Sells by Ray Edwards

How to Write Copy that Sells by Ray EdwardsGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

I really loved Ray Edwards’ straightforward, no-nonsense approach to approaching all types of copywriting. And, it’s a great introduction to how copy should be done. He walks readers through many different types of persuasive copy and his suggestions for the best practices for executing that copy. It’s a great handbook to have around, especially if you’re feeling stuck or if you’re starting to offer a new service.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#9 Hey, Whipple, Squeeze This by Luke Sullivan

Hey, Whipple, Squeeze This by Luke SullivanGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

This book provides insight and lessons for copywriters, crystalized through real-world scenarios experienced by the author. These anecdotes are engaging, hilarious and serve as helpful examples to reference when you inevitably find yourself in a similar situation. There are many books that prescribe techniques and spout trite instructions. “Hey, Whipple, Squeeze This”: A Guide to Creating Great Ads is an authentic collection of obstacles copywriters face along with invaluable methods of how to solve them.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#10 The Adweek Copywriting Handbook by Joseph Sugarman

The Adweek Copywriting Handbook by Joseph Sugarman Get this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

Sugarman is a master at his craft: in this book starts with the basics of copywriting – not the methods, but the understanding that takes place when you try to wear your client’s shoes and how emotion in copy works. Then he guides you through his thought processes as he analyzes an ad, a direct mail letter or an advertorial, helping you understand why that something matters and that something else doesn’t (or wouldn’t). This book is how a beginner copywriter can first approach copywriting with a professional eye and have the book remain one of the most important reference texts when you write copy for your websites or clients.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#11 The Glamour of Grammar by Roy Peter Clark

The Glamour of Grammar by Roy Peter ClarkGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

Clark presents an engaging and witty overview of grammar instead of presenting this information as boring and stuffy. He makes you want to master grammar, perfect your use of English, and understand the notion that how you use language matters. I would recommend this book to any copywriter, writer, or editor!

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#12 The Freelancer Manifesto by Steve Roller

The Freelancer Manifesto by Steve RollerGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

In a world where many try to sell freelancing as easy money, laptop on the beach and work in your pyjamas, this book is a refreshingly honest take on how to actually break into self-employment. It is packed with practical tips on how to build a sustainable business, from start to finish. The author also runs a popular group for copywriters on Facebook.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#13 Ogilvy on Advertising by David Ogilvy

Ogilvy on Advertising by David Ogilvy Get this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

Decades later, this book is still foundational to writing captivating copy.. The lessons apply in any age due to Ogilvy’s focus on leveraging unique insights and conversational language to create human connections.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

#14 Under the Radar by Jonathan Bond and Richard Kirshenbaum

Under the Radar by Jonathan Bond and Richard KirshenbaumGet this book or read more reviews of it by using the links below

While not strictly a copywriting book, Under the Radar is an inspiration for creative communications. I return to it often as a reminder that creativity gets results – especially when budgets are tight.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Contributors to this article
Chloe Brittain from Opal Transcription Calgary

Ashish H Thakkar from JimmyThakkar

Amiel Pineda from Minute to Read It

Shel Horowitz from Green And Profitable

Beth Brombosz from Brombosz Consulting LLC

Chris Beeth from ChrisBeeth

Luana Spinetti from LuanaSpinetti

Kealia Reynolds from House Method

Dalia Goldberg from Dalia Goldberg Copywriting

Andrew Evans from Cognito Forms

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