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Copywriting Tips from the DMA Design and Copy Technique and Application Certification By Amber Cleave 11/19/10
Agenda Getting started Copywriting Key Points and Highlights Copywriting for Blogs A look at some VR emails…dun dun dun Helpful resources
Getting Started: The 4 Key Questions Ask these 4 Key Questions: before you begin to write What am I selling (at emotional level)? To whom am I selling? (audience) Why am I selling this now (will it make sense to the customer)? What do I want my reader to do (Calls to Action)?
Getting Started - Brainstorming Review background info Make a list Write a friend Cluster writing Venn Diagram Mind Map Free-write
Copywriting Key Points Font Style: Sans-serif fonts, such as Arial, Verdana and Helvetica, are easier to read online Read Your Copy Out loud Cut the Clutter: William Zinsser wrote that "clutter is the disease of American writing." The quickest way to improve your copy is by removing any uneccesary words such as "that"or "to.” Use the Rhythm of 3 (happy, joyous and free)
More Highlights Vary Sentence Length Features vs. Benefits: Features are what the product has. Benefits are what it will provide the customers. The customer will always ask, "What's in it for me?” Made of Steel (feature) VS You never have to replace it (benefit) Home delivered (feature) VS Save time and money (benefit) Write In the Second Person: Focus on one person (you/your) rather than a group (our customers).
More Highlights Write Less Copy: People read 25% slower online than offline, so you need to write less copy so they will read it. Key Points: Keep your most important points at the beginning of paragraphs, bullets and lists. Keep Paragraphs Short: Make sure your paragraphs are no more than 3 “lines” long. Odd vs. Even: Odd numbers are easier to remember than even
More Highlights Ratio: ¾ free info vs. ¼ sales info As a writer, you can suggest ways to improve the offer Limit options – too many options can be overwhelming FUD Factor: Fear, uncertainty, doubt Write for the 6th grade level Bucket Brigade Words: Move copy forward
More Highlights #1 Copywriting rule: Does this make sense to the customer? Link to engage – makes ppl feel involved Focus on human element AIDA – Attention, Interest, Desire, Attraction (like sense of urgency) Spell check Proof read
Writing for Blogs Purposes of blogging: Value to reader Entertain Increase SEO Create business/sales Marketing your biz Dialogue with readers Provide expertise, leadership, educate
More About Blogging Headlines Titles should be captivating and search engine spiders should be able to find them Brevity Make a promise OK to write like you talk OK to ask questions Capture attention
VR Emails Too much wasted space on top right – click map studies show this is also among the most clicked upon spaces Split up into two paragraphs Add bulleted benefits of surveys
VR Emails Too much wasted space on top right Split up into two paragraphs – sentences should be no more than 3 “lines” long. That could even be one long sentence. Add bulleted benefits Of postcards The word “Complement” is too long – try “Pair” instead. Recommends signing from an individual rather than a company – makes it seem more personal
Too much wasted Space Too long – shorter copy Needs pictures
VR Emails Way too long, too much bolding and links. No flow. Where do you want people to go?? Too long – shorter copy Needs pictures Newsletter overall: Too long, word-heavy, too much blue, not enough pictures, bad flow – doesn’t lead readers.
Copywriting Resources Donna Baier Stein: www.twitter.com/donnabaierstein, Facebook group - Copywriter’s Council Current copywriters/Direct marketers: Jeff Laurie Robert Rosenthal Roberta Rosenberg Brian Clark (Copyblogger) Chris Brogan