5 Tips for Writing Killer Copy

copywriting
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Pssst, I’m about to let you in on a little secret:

Copywriting for your business doesn’t have to be such a drag.

When you have no idea where to begin or frankly what copywriting even is, then yes, that can make the whole process a real drag.

But hey, that’s why I’m here.

The key to copywriting? It’s easier than you think when you’re equipped with some basic knowledge and tools to carry you through.

Let’s start with the basics.

What is copywriting, anyway?

Simply put: Copywriting is the art of writing to sell. It’s the content you’ll find on a website, in a marketing email, in a social media ad and everywhere in between. The goal of copywriting is to drive the reader to take action — so yeah, it’s a pretty important part of your business. It’s more than creative writing (although you certainly can be creative in your approach). Copywriting requires an understanding of how people work and what makes them tick.

But how do you get into the heads of your potential customers? How do you churn out copy so persuasive that people drop whatever they’re doing to sign up for your service or purchase your product because they need it right now?

I’ve got five hot tips for writing killer copy, comin’ in hot.

1. Do your research

Before you begin writing, you’ll need to identify your ideal customer. It’s impossible to write targeted, effective copy without knowing who you’re writing for. If you already have a client base, you can take the guesswork out and simply look at the people who have bought from you before.

Otherwise, start by identifying your ideal customer’s habits. What are they searching for on Google? Do they use a mobile device or a computer? What social networks do they use?

Beyond their online habits, what are their goals and fears? And how can your business help them?

The more you know about your ideal customer, the easier it is to write in a way that will really resonate with them. Speak their language, and they will come.

2. Identify a problem, offer the solution

If I could give you just one piece of copywriting advice, it would be this: Cater to your customer. Your website copy, your newsletters, your Instagram captions — you’re not writing them for you.

Ok, yes, of course you want to attract customers for your business and become an overnight success, but you’re not going to achieve any of that if you believe you’re doing this for yourself.

At the end of the day, you’re writing for your customers. You’re doing this for them. You know you have an amazing product or service, but they don’t know that. How do you convince them?

You start by asking yourself what your ideal customer wants and needs. Ask yourself: What do I have to offer? Am I selling a product that solves a common problem? How can my service improve lives? 

If you want to sell something, you must give your readers a reason to buy from you. Plain and simple.

So focus on the benefits your business provides. Identify the problem. And be the solution.

Otherwise, start by identifying your ideal customer’s habits. What are they searching for on Google? Do they use a mobile device or a computer? What social networks do they use?

Beyond their online habits, what are their goals and fears? And how can your business help them?

The more you know about your ideal customer, the easier it is to write in a way that will really resonate with them. Speak their language, and they will come.

3. Use power words

Copywriting is just as much about psychology as it is writing well. While you want your message to be clear and concise, you also want to invoke an emotional response to hook your readers. That’s where power words come into play — and by “power” I don’t mean long, flowery language. I’m talking about words that pack a punch, words that command your reader’s attention.

Here is a list of 10 of those power words, identified by none other than the great David Ogilvy — better known as the “Father of Advertising.” This is not an all-inclusive list, but it’s a start! Be particularly mindful of incorporating power words into your headlines — that’s your first opportunity to grab your reader’s attention. Make it count.

Suddenly

Announcing

Now

Hurry

Quick

Easy

Bargain

Magic

Revolutionary

Offer

4. Show some personality

You know what’s a sure-fire way to lose your reader’s interest?

Be totally boring.

While you should follow some basic copywriting rules, please don’t be afraid to inject some personality into your copy. Remember that above all else, no matter who your ideal customer is, they’re also human. And humans crave familiar and relatable.

They also want to be entertained.

Your copy doesn’t have to be generic. There’s nothing worse than bland, robotic content that everyone’s already read a thousand times before. Talk about a snoozefest! You can and should be yourself.

5. Tell a story

Here’s another thing about us humans — we love a good story. As humans, we live for storytelling. It’s why we watch movies. It’s why we get lost in books and go to the theater. It’s also why we binge Netflix shows for hours on end.

The point? Storytelling sells.

And everybody has a story to tell.

Tell your story.

Tell the story of how your business came to be. Tell the story of how you want to help people, of how you hope to make an impact. Tell the story of how what you have to offer will benefit your reader. You need to go beyond simply telling your reader to buy from you — tell them why they should.

Attention spans are especially short online, so give your readers a reason to keep reading.

Ready to write some killer copy?

Ok, now you know what copywriting is. And you have the basic tools to tackle it like a pro. Now what’s stopping you? Start writing!

And hey, if you can’t seem to get it just right — you can always call in a professional copywriter (bonus: personal cheerleader) to help you find the right words.

Or, check out more Marketing Tips here.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lia Ganosellis

I’m a Florida-bred copywriter + content creator based in the Turks + Caicos Islands. A recovering journalist, I now get my kicks writing copy that helps small businesses thrive worldwide.

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