Writing Great Marketing Copy

Get attention and drive action

Isn’t it every marketing professional’s dream to write unforgettable copy that gets attention – real attention? Even if you have no aspirations to marketing fame (or even if you’re not a marketing professional but you’re just stuck “doing the marketing”) you want to write copy that will get attention and cause your readers to take action.

Long, long ago, I posted a message on this space called “Marketing Mistake #1.” It was about the error of writing your marketing message from your point of view rather than from that of your audience. Since then I’ve come across a nice video by a Scotland company called Purple Feather that really illustrates this point. It’s called The Power of Words.

So, getting to the right perspective is the first step. Way back in that original post, I talked about audience analysis: What does your prospective reader want or need that you can give them? What will be their immediate objections to buying? How can you address those objectives before they’re even raised? And, based on all that, what are the key words and phrases that will best communicate your message to this audience?

Once all that analysis has been done, though, how do you write the copy? And if you’re struggling, what might be the cause? Maybe you’re trying to be too literal. Or maybe you really haven’t yet taken off your own shoes and stepped into the shoes of your reader. It’s so easy to get stuck in your company’s or organization’s own “stuff.” For example:

·      Your nonprofit calls it an “annual fund raiser.” Is that what you want to call it in your marketing?

·      Your association says it will be offering “a series of webinars.” Is a series of webinars what your audience is really looking for right now?

·      Your firm calls it “strategic planning support.” Is that the phrase most likely to excite your audience, or will it make them run away?

Sometimes the problem is looking at what you’re trying to “sell” and seeing only what you’re trying to sell – not what it can do for the person who buys it. Once you get over that hurdle, you can think exclusively from your audience’s point of view, and then you’ll write exactly the kind of words, phrases and sentences that will turn their heads – and nothing more.

Several years ago a blog post on HubSpot.com offered six great tips – with really exciting examples – that are as relevant and helpful now as they were then. (HubSpot also refers to the Purple Feather video mentioned above.) I recommend you take a look. I can list their six tips, but five minutes on that site will give you some fantastic examples. Their advice:

·      Tilt the perspective.

·      Make connections.

·      Start with a stunning lead.

·      Listen to your audience.

·      Avoid jargon and hyperbole.

·      Cut the words right to the bone.

With asalute to HubSpot.com, I encourage you to review the “Power of Words” video and the six great tips offered by HubSpot.