help and advice

Get into Advertising

Want to break into advertising? Well, the good news is that the advertising world is changing, with lots of small, independent agencies earning a reputation for their great work. So as an aspiring copywriter you have lots of opportunities, both with the big traditional agencies, and with smaller startups.

Advertising education

An advertising education is obviously a good thing to have.

But it’s not the only way to get into advertising. You might gain experience on the job instead, or through work in a related field.

Make yourself appealing to agencies

You can take steps to make yourself more employable:

  • Know the industry. Follow ad industry news. Learn who is doing what. (See resources below)
  • Show your passion for communicating, convincing and converting
  • Demonstrate your creativity in other ways. Side-projects and creative pursuits prove that you love to create
  • Customise your portfolio to the agency you’re talking to. Make it relevant to your audience

Agencies welcome book crits (portfolio reviews), so it’s worth contacting agencies once you have a clear idea of what they do. Often Creative Directors will give actionable feedback and may invite you back in for further review.

Find a creative partner

These websites can help you find a creative partner:


A few classic books on advertising:

  • Hey Whipple, Squeeze This: The Classic Guide to Creating Great Ads – Luke Sullivan, Edward Boches
  • How to: Write Better Copy – Steve Harrison
  • Read Me: 10 Lessons for Writing Great Copy – Roger Horberry, Gyles Lingwood


Thanks to Vikki Ross for providing the information on this page.