Tell me the five most famous Andersen’s tales, and I’ll tell you which of the five types of copywriting you need.

The five types of copywriting, the five Andersen´s tales

In her post “Qué es el copywriting”, Spanish copywriter Maïder Tomasena writes about different aspects of compelling writing.

One of them revolves around the types of copywriting. Namely, Maïder explains that there are five types of compelling writing:

  • Direct response copywriting;
  • Marketing copywriting;
  • Brand copywriting;
  • SEO copywriting;
  • Technical copywriting.

However, Maïder’s post is quite long as it addresses many topics regarding compelling writing, not just the types of copywriting.

For this reason, I decided to write this post and focus only on the types of compelling writing.

My intention is to answer the following three questions:

  • Which are the types of copywriting?
  • Where can we use each one of them?
  • What’s the purpose of each copywriting type?

On top of that, I’ll compare the types of copywriting with the five most famous tales written by the Danish writer, Hans Christian Andersen.

I’ll do that because we should talk about the protagonists of Andersen’s tales to see which type of copywriting your business needs.

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What is direct response copywriting?

Direct response copywriting is the first of the five types of copywriting; this type seeks a direct and immediate response.

That’s the reason why Maïder defines it as “the origin of all types of copywriting”.

We use direct response copywriting when we craft content for:

THE GOAL: The goal is to persuade visitors to perform the desired action. For example, to click a CTA, subscribe to a newsletter, download a lead magnet, share the content, etc.

Direct response copywriting: “The Emperor’s New Clothes”

THE ANDERSEN’S TALE: “The Emperor’s New Clothes”

If your business is like the protagonist of the tale “The Emperor’s New Clothes”, it needs special “clothes” to get the desired reaction from your target audience.

Professionals who work as direct response copywriters make that “clothes” to measure.

THE MORAL: The clothes must be visible.

In the tale, the tailors assure the Emperor that his clothes have “the miraculous virtue of being invisible to every person who is unfit for office.”

Likewise, direct response copywriters don’t address every person in the copies. They address only your target audience.

Moreover, a compelling text should be straightforward, direct, and easy to understand. Even the child from the tale should be able to see this sort of “Emperor’s new clothes” and have an idea about what to do next.

Direct response copywriting: If there’s a copywriter on your team whose job is to “make compelling content to measure”, your business shouldn’t be nor appear naked.

What is marketing copywriting?

Marketing copywriting is the second type of copywriting that focuses on consumers problems, desires, and pain points.

As a result, it’s essential to find solutions to consumers’ problems, explain them in a copy, and highlight the benefits those solutions provide.

We use marketing copywriting when we craft content for:

THE GOAL: The goal is to close the sale or win the contract. That’s the reason why we could define this type of copywriting as “writing to sell”.

Marketing copywriting: “The Princess and the Pea”

THE ANDERSEN’S TALE: “The Princess and the Pea”

If your prospect is like a protagonist of the tale “The Princess and the Pea”, marketing copywriting should insist on the nuisance the pea causes.

What we want to achieve is to persuade the princess to change the mattress, the bed, or even the castle.

THE MORAL: There’s no marketing copywriting without the pea.

So, before asking a marketing copywriter for help, make sure that:

  • There is the pea that bothers the princess – Without a problem, there’s no solution; without the solution, there are no benefits. And without the benefits, there’s no marketing copywriting.
  • Your princess isn’t in another castle – On the other hand, without knowing who is your business’s target audience, there’s no copywriting at all.

Marketing copywriting: Insist on the discomfort the pea produces if your intention is to persuade the princess to change her mattress, the bed or even the castle.

What is brand copywriting?

Brand copywriting is the third type of copywriting whose goal is to convey both a brand image and a brand identity.

In other words, the brand voice should sound as if the logo could speak.

A brand copy is meant to establish an emotional connection between a brand and its target audience. To achieve that connection, copywriters usually turn to storytelling.

We use brand copywriting when we craft content for: About me / About us page

THE GOAL: The goal is to correctly convey the brand mission, vision and values, so that the target audience can recognise, identify, and differentiate our brand from competing ones.

Brand copywriting: “The Ugly Duckling”

THE ANDERSEN’S TALE: “The Ugly Duckling”

If your brand is an “ugly duckling”, brand copywriting will help you transform it into a “beautiful swan” and give it the voice of the swan.

THE MORAL: From the ugly duckling to the precious swan, there’s not only one step, but only one piece of compelling text.

The brand image and the brand voice must match.

In other words, if your brand is an “ugly duckling”, try not to make its voice sound as if it was the voice of a “good-looking duckling”.

It’s necessary to turn it first into a “swan”. Then, adapt its voice. Without the transformation, there’s no brand copywriting.

Brand copywriting: If your brand is an “ugly duckling”, don’t make an unnecessary effort to make it sound like it’s a “good-looking duckling”. The solution is to transform your brand into a “swan”.

What is SEO copywriting?

SEO copywriting is the fourth type of copywriting. It focuses on achieving the following two goals:

  • The first one is to persuade readers to perform a particular action (to download a lead magnet, make a sale, etc.);
  • And the second one, to position the content among the highest-ranked Google search results and ensure some quality organic traffic to a website.

We use SEO copywriting when we craft content for:

  • Product descriptions;
  • Categories of products;
  • Landing pages.

THE GOAL: The goal is to make the copy appealing both to the readers and Google. It should be not only user-friendly, but also optimised for the search engines.

SEO copywriting: “The Little Mermaid”

THE ANDERSEN’S TALE: “The Little Mermaid”

Many Spanish marketers define the relation between SEO and copywriting as a marriage.

However, I would rather compare it to the story “The Little Mermaid”.

  • SEO is like the tail that helps the Little Mermaid to reach the sea surface.
  • Copywriting is the voice that allows her to establish and maintain communication with humans.

THE MORAL: The Little Mermaid is an outstanding protagonist, but only as long as she belongs to both worlds, the sea and the land.

  • Staying in the sea, she remains invisible to the person she’s in love with. In the sea, the Little Mermaid has a voice, but humans can’t hear it. The same goes for copywriting without traffic.
  • After renouncing her tail, the Little Mermaid loses her voice and can’t talk to the person she loves. The same goes for organic traffic without copywriting. If there’s no copywriting, there’s no voice.

SEO copywriting: SEO is the tail that helps the Little Mermaid to reach the sea surface. Copywriting is her voice, the one that allows her to speak to the humans.

What is technical copywriting?

Technical copywriting is the fifth type of copywriting. It focuses on an audience that has an in-depth understanding of how a specific sector works.

Technical copywriting is characterised by the use of a highly specialised language, also known as jargon. The copies crafted by technical copywriters are information-driven.

It’s possible to distinguish different types of technical copywriting: gastronomic copywriting, tourist copywriting, etc.

We use technical copywriting when we craft content: Any compelling text, as long as it addresses a highly competent audience that understands the jargon spoken in a particular field or sector.

THE GOAL: The goal is to both create bonds with the target audience and engage it, hiring the specialised language the public speaks and understands.

Technical copywriting: “The Steadfast Tin Soldier”

THE ANDERSEN’S TALE: “The Steadfast Tin Soldier”

There are 24 soldiers in the tale “The Steadfast Tin Soldier”. All of them are equal.

The same goes for copywriters who don’t specialise. They offer the same service to all kinds of clients.

However, soldier number 25 is different from his peers. He has one leg shorter than the another one.

Due to the disability, soldier 25 understands the feelings, needs, and insecurities of “imperfect toys.” Therefore, he knows how to speak to these types of toys, aka the target audience.

THE MORAL: It doesn’t matter how many legs a tin soldier has. What matters is that he understand which battle he should be part of and how to reverse his disability into an advantage.

Technical copywriters are like the Steadfast Tin Soldier. They’re the ones who understand how the “imperfect toys” feel.

The five types of copywriting: which one do you need?

Now that you know the five types of copywriting, the question is: Which one do you need?

But before answering this question, let’s remember the famous Andersen’s quote:

“Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale.”

Hans Christian Andersen

Of course, I agree with his point of view. Nevertheless, I would like to add that not only life stands as a wonderful fairy tale. Copywriting does, too.

If you think the same, please get in touch with me. I can help you determine what type of copywriting you need.

And not just that I can.

I would be happy to do it!

A Writing-Friendly Question: What type of copywriting do you need?

From NO to YES, there is only one CLICK. Please share this text.

Categories: Copywriting


Thobelani · 04/11/2020 at 15:03

Hi, thanks for this nice and informative content. I live in South Africa. I left 9-5 jobs in 2017 and I want to Copywrite as a career. This article clarified a number of things about copywriting.

What can you advise me, I have more than 15 years of sales experience and MBA qualification? Which type of copywriting is suitable? I also have a number of certifications in Digital Marketing.

    Stasa Durdic · 04/11/2020 at 17:10

    Hi Thobelani,

    Thank you so much for your comment. I’m glad you liked the post and found it informative and helpful.

    Considering your question, I would need more information to answer it. Are you certified in PPC advertising, SEO, growth marketing or another field? Without that info, I would go for direct copywriting. If you have 15-year experience in sales, it seems the most suitable decision.

    If you have more questions, I’m here to help. 😉

    Kind regards,


Diamaka Aniagolu · 10/10/2021 at 12:44

Very informative and basic….i love it!

    Stasa Durdic · 11/10/2021 at 09:06

    Thanks a lot! I’m glad you like it. 🙂 Kind regards!

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[…] Stasa Durdic identifies these five types […]

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