Entries Tagged 'effective copy' ↓

You Need Website Copy – Who Y’a Gonna Call?

Exciting times!Power of website copywriting

You’ve decided your business needs a new website, so it’s time to start planning and budgeting. For many companies, their website shopping list is a bit like this one…

  • Find a great web designer
  • Get a photographer on board for some arty shots
  • Think about keywords
  • Come up with a colour scheme
  • Think of some cool graphics

But there’s something missing, something very important – what about the words?

Nine times out of ten, website copy is overlooked. After all, it’s not that important – anyone can throw a bit of text together…can’t they?

Why web content should be at the top of your list

Why do I need a copywriter? I know my business better than they do.

There’s no denying that, but copywriters don’t profess to know your business better than you because they’re not experts in your business. But they are experts in creating copy that sells.

If you’re still not convinced about the importance of your website copy, think of it this way.

[You’ll need your imagination for this bit.]

Your website is your online showroom.

The design, colour scheme, photos and graphics are your shop fittings – what makes it look inviting.

The copywriting is your sales team patrolling the shop floor, ready to help your customers.

Now, if you write your own copy it tends to be focused on your business, the features of your products and contains lots of ‘we’. That is the equivalent of your sales team huddled together, chatting about what they did last night while your potential customers mill around, get bored and head for the door.

When your copy is written by a professional copywriter it is focused on your customers, their needs and highlights the benefits of your products and services. That is the equivalent of a sales team that:

  • Greets your customers as they come through the door
  • Offers advice about which product/service that would suit their particular needs
  • Counters any buying objections they may have
  • Closes the sale

I know which sales team I’d rather have.

Make your website work

If you don’t make your website copy a priority and get it written professionally, the chances are your website won’t perform.

It won’t attract visitors, it won’t inspire them to do business with you, it won’t answer their questions – basically, it won’t sell.

By understanding the power of words and investing in good professionally written content, you’ll create a website that:

  • Attracts visitors
  • Answers their questions
  • Convinces them to buy
  • Closes the sale

It’s a no brainer.

How to Engage Your Reader Through Copywriting

The written word is a powerful tool when used correctly.

The effectiveness of all your written marketing communications, whether they are web pages, blog posts, white papers, case studies or brochures, relies entirely on engagement.

If they don’t strike a chord with the reader they will have little or no effect.

Writing marketing materials within your organisation can often lead to text that is full of jargon, unclear and downright boring, which will reflect the reader’s perception of your company. And that’s not good.

Yes, I know what you’re thinking – you’re a copywriter, you’re going to say that aren’t you.

Yes I am, and I make no apology for it. And that’s because over the years I’ve seen a lot of marketing materials produced in-house and, pretty much all of it (with the odd exception), is like that.

The problem is, when you are part of a company, you are usually too close to your product or service to see it objectively. It’s almost impossible to mentally remove yourself from what you know and write about it from your customers’ perspective.

That’s why writing with a copywriter can really help – because they are trained to write compelling copy that will engage your readers.

Different writing tasks

When writing something, do you actively think about what you need to produce and tailor your writing style accordingly?

Probably not.

You see, every type of writing demands different disciplines:

Engaging your reader


Working with a copywriter

First off, let’s get one thing straight – it’s not the copywriter’s job to know everything about your company.

You’re hiring them because they are professional writers and can put across your ideas and information in an interesting, engaging and compelling way.

Therefore, you will need to help them by providing them with background information and other materials to help them get to grips with your business and brand (including your style and tone of voice).

Plus, make sure you give them time to absorb all the information.


The copywriter/subject matter expert relationship

If this is going to be successful, it’s essential everyone knows where they stand from the outset and what they are to bring to the table:

Copywriter and subject matter expert relationship

Only by working together can they really do justice to your products and services by shaping and developing great copy.

So next time you engage a copywriter to help you with your marketing materials, remember they can’t produce miracles alone.

What Makes Good Copy?

Can you really tell whether copy is good or bad just by looking at it?

The answer is yes and no.

It rather depends on what the copy is, what it’s meant to do and what form it takes.

For example if it’s SEO copywriting and it’s very obvious what the targeted keyword is, like in the example below…


…then it’s pretty safe to say it’s bad copy.

The problem is a section of text can be very well written (grammatically correct and no spelling errors) and yet, from a sales perspective, it’s about as useful as a chocolate teapot.

That’s why it’s not always easy to spot bad copy.

It’s probably easier to look at this from a different angle and think about what makes good copy.

The traits of good copy

Luckily there are 5 characteristics that good copy has. No matter which format it’s written for or what it’s trying to sell, good copy will always:

  1. Grab the readers’ attention immediately
  2. Be clear and unambiguous
  3. Answer all the readers’ questions and so counter any buying objections they may have
  4. Build trust and rapport with the reader
  5. Motivate the reader into taking a specific action through a strong call to action

What it comes down to is this – copy is written for a purpose (generally to sell something) but if it doesn’t fulfil that purpose it’s not doing its job.

Selling through text alone is difficult. You don’t have the personal contact with the customer; you can’t think on your feet to counter their buying objections and you can’t shake their hands.

Your copywriting has to do every thing:

  • Inform
  • Build trust
  • Convince
  • Convert into a sale

That’s not an easy thing to achieve.

What are your thoughts? Can you think of any more traits you find in good copy? Why not share them here along with any shocking examples of copy you’ve come across.