Improve your content by incorporating these cornerstones of good copywriting – originally written by Chad Lane for Worry Free copywriters.
Worry Free Marketing started as a partnership of a techie (Matt) and a copywriter (Chad).
We quickly found that good quality copywriting is in very high demand.
Virtually no business owner writes good copy, and even copywriting pros can miss the mark on key aspects of content.
Even though we’ve since expanded our services tremendously, copywriting is still a core function of Worry Free, and we promote our professional copywriting abilities heavily.
Therefore, I’ve written up a few key points that elevate our copywriting services above the competition and get good results for our clients.
1. Write simply
Copy needs to be easy to read and digest.
Short words, short sentences and short paragraphs are the order of the day for any copy, but are vitally important for website copy.
Online consumers scan text, looking to solve their problem. Make it easy for them to do so with clearly defined headers, bullet points, and short sentences and paragraphs.
Avoid subjunctive tense whenever possible.
Typically, copy should be written in imperative and indicative moods.
Verify your copy readability by entry into https://www.webfx.com/tools/read-able/ and other similar programs. The target is 6th-8th grade reading level.
2. Use Subheaders
Use subheads to pull a reader through the copy. When introducing a new concept or a new section regarding the product or service, start with an interesting subhead that will make the reader want to continue.
Subheads act as signposts for readers who scan text. They’ll scan down the article until they find the section they’re reading for, then read that portion – so make them interesting and relevant.
3. Write with empathy
Copywriting is a sales job. To be a good salesperson, you must have empathy.
For our purposes, “empathy” can be defined as –
The ability to adopt another’s point of view.
Before beginning a writing project, learn all you can about your intended audience.
For example, if you are writing for an auto body shop, your intended audience is probably someone who has recently been in an accident.
Do a bit of desk research and find out typical accident costs, how much people pay to have their cars repaired, etc.
Look up other auto body shops and read some reviews. What do people like? What do they complain about?
Talk to the sales team and find out the common questions asked, objections encountered, and what they say or promise that closes the deal.
Then spend a few minutes (or an hour or two) adopting the viewpoint of the intended audience.
How did you feel the last time you had an accident? What were your concerns?
If you’re writing for a dental practice or personal service, walk around for a bit and pretend you have tooth pain right now. Try to look through the eyes of someone who, for instance, experiences introversion because their teeth are in bad shape.
Now write your copy.
Eliminate unnecessary text that doesn’t directly speak to this client.
Attempt to match how the person feels in the copy. For example, bright, cheerful text would be entirely inappropriate for an emergency dental services page. Super sappy “We feel sorry for you” copy would also be inappropriate.
4. Basic sequence of key pages
Copy generally follows this sequence:
- Introduction of the problem
What is this page going to solve for the visitor? Pose a question or describe in personal detail the problem.
“At XYZ, we understand the need to get your car back on the road looking beautiful again quickly.”
- Address any immediate concerns
This is where you differentiate our client’s services or products from the things that people generally don’t like about other companies or products.
“Other shops often take weeks or months to get the work done on a major repair. Worse, they often fail to make your car look exactly like it did before the accident.”
“XYZ works with car manufacturers directly – no aftermarket parts – to get an exact match for your car.”
- Punch home the problem
“You invest a lot of time and money into your car. You want your car back on the road as quickly as possible, and you want to love it again.”
- Offer the solution
“The experts at XYZ will give you the hassle-free experience you deserve and get you back on the road at no time.”
- Call to action
“Call XYZ now for a free estimate”
5. A note on keywords
Keywords are of secondary importance.
Write the copy to address your prospect, and keywords will appear naturally in the copy. After you write, you can go through and see if more is needed. A website page should have at least 300 words of copy to get any attention from Google.
I highly recommend finding someone who isn’t a copy professional to read your article before publishing it. This provides a benchmark for whether your article is a success.
Once I’ve finished a blog, I’ll often have my wife read it.
I want to know – did she lose interest halfway through and start scanning?
Did she get her questions answered?
How does she feel about the client’s services?
An article isn’t successful unless it is read and acted upon. Getting someone outside the field to read your article before it is published can improve results tremendously.