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Which technical skill should I seek out: copywriting/advertising or web development?

Idea threads

paintothetouch53

New Contributor
Jan 21, 2023
3
3
Hi ya'll. A little bit about me: I'm a 17 year old student in the US who will be majoring in computer science next year in college. Like many of you, I want to go down the route of entrepreneurship and I know going down that route will require lots of hard work and discipline. My past experiences in the field have been in frontend web development and web design, although I never learned much past that.

Now, I've been reading lots of books every day on entrepreneurship. They talk about the value of learning new skills and learning technical skills.

And currently, I've deducted to two routes: learn full stack web development or copywriting.

If I do web development, I would use my already-developed skills of frontend dev and focus on creating Software as a Service. The only issue I would have is, I'm still young at 17. Many of the SaaS products out there are B2B, and satisfy needs in job markets that I do not have access to (think software, finance, etc).

The other route is copywriting. I say this because I would say I'm already an alright writer and have been doing lots of research into advertising, especially the psychology behind it (reading books). I also am trying to apply it to creating my own portfolio and have been thinking of focusing on the SaaS market by making copy for already existing SaaS companies. I also think it has potential to grow into a bigger idea with my web design/frontend dev skills; I can create designs for websites and write their copy at the same time, killing two birds with one stone. Also, the issue of age won't be as consequential as people in the service market are more interested in what you can do for them rather than your qualifications.

However, I still have qualms about this path, as a service business means I have to spend more time working to get clients, in contrast to SaaS where as long as you get leads the customers can buy with no detriment to one's time. Also, copywriting seems like a more saturated market, although this isn't as big of a concern as the one aforementioned as I can always find a niche.

I'm still lost on what path to go down. I feel like I can't commit because I'm afraid the other path might be the more profitable one, and I might regret it. What do you think? Thanks so much.
 
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Andy Black

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Now, I've been reading lots of books every day on entrepreneurship. They talk about the value of learning new skills and learning technical skills.
Ha. That's what you get reading lots of books. They talk about the importance of "learning" and make that the goal.

You've already got web development skills and you're about to major in computer science. Lean into that?

Oh, and your age isn't an issue.

Check out "What if you already know enough?" in my signature.
 

Choate

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Full stack with a side of copywriting.

You can continue to learn copywriting on the side, reading books like The Copywriter's Handbook, The Adweek Copywriting Handbook, and stuff from authors like Robert Cialdini, David Ogilvy, and Seth Godin.

However, I still have qualms about this path, as a service business means I have to spend more time working to get clients, in contrast to SaaS where as long as you get leads the customers can buy with no detriment to one's time. Also, copywriting seems like a more saturated market, although this isn't as big of a concern as the one aforementioned as I can always find a niche.

Both are saturated markets, but businesses continue to need high quality developers and copywriters. You'll be competing in a global market. It's not like an SaaS will be fire and forget completely independent of your time.

You have frontend and web development skills. You can continue to offer that as a service for businesses. Keep going with it. Eventually, you'll find some of them need something more than that. The more diverse your skillset, the better chance you have to fill in those gaps.
 

bray

New Contributor
Jun 30, 2022
14
9
Utah
Pick one and see which one you like the skill itself is not important it is how you use that skill that is important. For example Michael Jordan is very good at basketball however if you handed me a basketball I would be clueless. It is how you approach the skill that is important.
 
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Val Okafor

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Nov 14, 2015
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Hi ya'll. A little bit about me: I'm a 17 year old student in the US who will be majoring in computer science next year in college. Like many of you, I want to go down the route of entrepreneurship and I know going down that route will require lots of hard work and discipline. My past experiences in the field have been in frontend web development and web design, although I never learned much past that.

Now, I've been reading lots of books every day on entrepreneurship. They talk about the value of learning new skills and learning technical skills.

And currently, I've deducted to two routes: learn full stack web development or copywriting.

If I do web development, I would use my already-developed skills of frontend dev and focus on creating Software as a Service. The only issue I would have is, I'm still young at 17. Many of the SaaS products out there are B2B, and satisfy needs in job markets that I do not have access to (think software, finance, etc).

The other route is copywriting. I say this because I would say I'm already an alright writer and have been doing lots of research into advertising, especially the psychology behind it (reading books). I also am trying to apply it to creating my own portfolio and have been thinking of focusing on the SaaS market by making copy for already existing SaaS companies. I also think it has potential to grow into a bigger idea with my web design/frontend dev skills; I can create designs for websites and write their copy at the same time, killing two birds with one stone. Also, the issue of age won't be as consequential as people in the service market are more interested in what you can do for them rather than your qualifications.

However, I still have qualms about this path, as a service business means I have to spend more time working to get clients, in contrast to SaaS where as long as you get leads the customers can buy with no detriment to one's time. Also, copywriting seems like a more saturated market, although this isn't as big of a concern as the one aforementioned as I can always find a niche.

I'm still lost on what path to go down. I feel like I can't commit because I'm afraid the other path might be the more profitable one, and I might regret it. What do you think? Thanks so much.
I second what Andy and Choate said.

No one gets paid for learning any skill. You get paid for delivering high-value work. You already have a taste of web development; I advise you to lean into it. The fact that you are second-guessing yourself could mean that it is no longer exciting.

The thing that could re-spark and sustain excitement is results. Both paths give you options. But as a developer, I am biased toward web development. It could get you results faster.

My son is 14, and I am teaching him Webflow. If you are in doubt, throw yourself into Webflow. Become an expert Webflow developer. It will get you results fast.
 

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