Sharp, refined copy sets the tone for a business. Wherever it’s positioned – website, social media, eDM – copy associated with your brand reflects your brand. Language is emotive; two similar words can evoke polarising responses from a reader. How do you utilise copywriting to not only help solidify your company’s identity, but to also mobilise consumers to engage with you?
Good copywriting knows its audience.
Before putting any words down on the page – in fact, don’t you dare even formulate a sentence in your head – it pays to get a clear idea of who you’re actually writing for. The clearer you know your audience, the more precise and tapered your copy will be, leading to greater engagement and conversion for your product. This could mean altering the language you use or peppering keywords throughout the text to parallel the interests of your audience.
Your reader is there for a reason. The sooner you can work out their motive, the sooner you’ll experience success and conversions.
This leads to another important point, which is: speak to the individual, not the collective. Engage your reader by phrasing your copy in a way that directly acknowledges and involves them. Your focus needs to be on building a connection with your audience, that’s your ultimate goal.
Do your research.
Also prior to writing, you need to ask yourself about the topic of your copy. Do you have an in-depth understanding of what you’ll be writing about? The more research you do, the greater your comprehension of the topic and the easier it’ll be to write. You’ll also be able to develop a more relaxed tone – something that will help you connect with your audience.
Additionally, you want to make your copy as easy to follow and understand as possible – it will become clearer as you increase your research.
So you’ve thrown a few words together and they’ve found their way into the vague shape of a paragraph – what are you looking for to determine whether your copy will be effective?
One of the most publicised techniques of improving writing is to read what you write out loud. Many of humanity’s greatest writers swear by vocalising their work, in an attempt to make it more relaxed and accessible to the reader. These are integral qualities for your copy as well, so get used to speaking to yourself.
Writing in an active voice is another common but essential skill. While it’s not detrimental to slip into the passive voice every now and then, an active voice improves engagement and promotes a strong, clear tone.
An active voice is when a subject acts upon its verb. Inversely, a passive voice is when the verb acts upon the subject.
Active: “Scott started the car.”
Passive: “The car was started by Scott.”
It also helps to weave a narrative through your copy, as humans retain more information when it’s in the form of a story. It’ll help your brand and product stay in the mind of your consumer for longer, as well as giving a greater chance of connection.
The sobering reality is that you’re writing for skimmers. You write copy for a purpose and your reader knows this; this is why they’re reading in the first place! So naturally they are going to skim through your writing and grab what they need. Your goal is to make sure they can find what they’re seeking—through clear, concise language, and short, well organised paragraphs.
Make sure you have a clear USP.
Your USP is your ‘Unique Selling Proposition’ and is one of the essential ingredients to your company’s success. Why should a consumer buy your product instead of one of your competitors? Think hard about this question and come to a clear answer. Then, spend time incorporating your answer into a clear USP that can be integrated into the copy across the website and promotional materials.
Good copy possesses well-crafted and decisive CTAs.
What is the point of your copy? In most cases, you’re wanting to put effective and engaging copy together for a specific outcome. Both you and your customer want something from each other, your CTA (‘Call To Action’) is where you offer to satisfy your audience’s desires.
Keep your language and message clear and simple. Tell your audience what they should do, making it so easy and hassle-free that it feels like the organic next step (and by this point, your engaging and intimate copy has created the connection that makes them want that next step).
The final word…
Copywriting is integral to the success of your business and while this may seem like a large amount of information to take in, with practice you will taper your style and technique.
Alternatively, if things get too overwhelming, or you don’t have the time to create elite copy yourself, here at Unify we have copywriting specialists who can assist you and your business.