What is copywriting
Copywriting is the art and science of writing to promote a product, a business, a person or an idea. And
carefully selecting, editing, weaving and constructing those words in a way that they’ll persuade the reader
into taking a specific and measurable action.
As said by Bruce Bendinger, in his book “The Copy Workshop Workbook”, Bruce shares this remarkable
"Copywriting is a job.
A skilled craft
Words on paper
Scripts to time
And one moe thing it's...
As you can see, the term “salesmanship” is not only referring to the final sale of the product. The end goal of
copywriting is not always to sell the product in a single blow, but to persuade the reader into taking a
specific action. And this “action” can be subscribing to a newsletter, calling the phone number on screen,
clicking a link, sending an e-mail to their friends, etc. Any of those actions will be used, in turn, to advance
the sale further.
Essentials of Copywriting
1. SELL BENEFITS, NOT FEATURES
“Consumers do not buy products. They buy product benefits.”-David Ogilvy
Have you ever heard the phrase, “Sell a good night’s sleep, not the mattress”? Think
about all of the mattress commercials and advertisements you’ve seen before. Do
they lead with coil count or insulation padding details? Nah. They sell you on how
comfortable the mattress is, how well you’ll sleep on it, and how much more
productive and enjoyable your days will be when you are well-rested. They want you
to positively frame their product, envision yourself using it, and negate any potential
concerns you may have.
Similarly, you can use this formula in your own copy:
Frame your product as the solution
Paint the picture of how your customer will use your productUse
plausible guarantees to bolster the appeal of your product, if possible (money back,
2. WRITE PLAINLY
“Copy is a direct conversation with the consumer.”-Shirley Polykoff
If you don’t speak in the language that your customer relates to, you’ll lose them way
before your irresistible offer. Above everything, you want your copy to sound almost
like an internal dialogue. It should mimic what a person would say internally when
convincing themselves to buy your product or service.For example, you may want
your customer to say something like, Hey, this phone will allow me to take HD video
and still fit in my pocket. It’ll be great when I don’t want to carry my bulky DSLR.If
that’s what you want to convey, make it plain.
Don’t use literary acrobatics when you could just as easily arrange a sentence to
say, Leave the bulky DSLR at home. Record HD video with a phone that can fit in
3. FOCUS ON THE HEADLINE
“On the average, five times as many people read the headlines as read the body
The headline is the most important part of your copy. It’s how you capture their
attention in the first place.
Here are a few tried and true formulas for creating a headline that draws a
crowd:Use numbers because readers love lists. (7 Ways to Create an Effective
Facebook Ad Campaign)
Be controversial. (Better than what the competition is offering)
Appeal to their need to be in the know/ fear of missing out. (Blogging 101: Everything
You Need to Start a Blog)
Appeal to their sense of logic and reason. (10 Reasons You Should be a Travelzoo
Make them curious about your product, service, or topic. (Why startups fail,
according to their founders)
Use trigger words that create an emotional response in your reader’s mind.
(Amazing, Because, Create, Discover, Easy, Free, Guarantee…)
4. MAKE IT RELEVANT
“Nobody reads ads. People read what interests them. Sometimes it’s an ad.”-Howard
The ads you notice are those that jump out at you because of a catchy headline or
visual appeal, but the only ones you continue read are highly relevant to your
predicament.Make sure that you understand your target audience and create an ad
that answers what they are struggling with.It’s a good idea to write down exactly
who you want to reach. Create a persona. Make a name, assign an age, gender, and
location. Understand why they buy and what turns them away from closing the deal.
Then, direct your ad copy to that one persona. Speak directly to them, and by being
specific, you’ll increase your ability to reach more people.
5. COMMIT TO RESEARCH
“I spend a long time studying the precedents. I look at every advertisement which has appeared
for competing products during the past 20 years.”-David Ogilvy
As in the quote above, father of advertising, David Ogilvy shared that he spent a great deal of
time researching the competitors. Not only did he find out what they sold, but also how they
sold, and how the market responding to them.Competitor research is important, but you also
have to be extremely familiar with your own product or service. Rolls Royce was one of the first
major accounts Ogilvy won when his agency was in its early years.
In his book, he talks about spending a full three weeks reading about the car to come up with
one simple headline: “At sixty miles an hour, the loudest noise comes from the electric clock.” This
might not seem like the type of detail that would take you three weeks to find, but sometimes
you need to give your brain time to let the information soak in.
The research step is crucial in creating a copy that convinces. You have to know who’s
competing for the same customer’s attention and what they’re saying. Then you have to
determine how to do it better by playing up the benefits of your own offering.
6. CLARIFY THE OBVIOUS
“Sometimes the most important job advertising can do, is to clarify the obvious.”-Jay Chiat
Your audience needs to recognize your product or service as the long-awaited solution to their
problem. Are you positioning yourself in that way, or are you passively sharing information in
hopes that they’ll connect the dots? Let me be clear– they won’t.You have to be clear with your
copy. If you’re selling yourself as a social media marketer, you can’t simply say, “If you need a
social media marketer, I’m your guy (or gal).” You want to actively show your potential
clients why they should choose your services (for example, Choose me because I have five
years’ worth of experience in improving social media awareness for big brands, like…).
THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF COPYWRITING
THE DIFFERENT STYLES OF COPYWRITING
SEO (Search engine optimization) - Key words enabling your
product to have a much longer shelf life
Creative - headlines, mottos, scripts, slogans, and jingles, scripts
Sales- Product description,
Technical - User guides, instruction manuals, release notes, and more
Key components of an Ad
The header, also known as the title, attracts attention to the ad and lets the reader know
what he will find out in the copy. The header should communicate a key benefit described
in the ad, such as a discount sale or a limited-time offer. It may also identify a problem a
reader might have and propose a solution to the problem.
The body elaborates on the concept of the title, and should build interest in the product or
service. Print ad copy should be well organized. Use bullet points or subheaders when
appropriate to make the information easily understandable for the reader.
CALL TO ACTION
A call to action typically follows the ad copy. As the name suggests, a call to action leads the
reader to take a specific action, such as visiting the store or contacting the store for more
information. Because readers can quickly forget the body copy, the call to action needs to
create a sense of urgency. Phrases like "call today" and "this offer expires ..." with a date direct
the reader to do something now.
Contact information tells the viewer how to get in touch with the business to take advantage
of the offer. Include as much information as appropriate to make it easy for the reader to find
the business. This section usually includes the company name, address, telephone number and
KEY ELEMENTS OF A SUCCESSFUL TV
DEPICTION OF STRONG EMOTIONS RELATES TO OUR MINDS MORE THAN WORDS OR IMAGES. TO MAKE PEOPLE LIKE THE
COMMERCIAL AND ENJOY WATCHING IT, ADVERTISERS MUST IDENTIFY THE EMOTIONS THEY WANT THE CONSUMERS TO
FEEL. THIS HOWEVER NEEDS TO BE ADDRESSED DURING PLANNING AND CONCEPTUAL PHASE AND NOT JUST USED AS
FILLER LATER.THE EMOTIONS ASSOCIATED WITH AN AD DEPEND LARGELY ON THE BRAND OR PRODUCT. FOR A LOCAL
MECHANIC, THE EMOTION OF TRUST WOULD WORK BEST. LIKEWISE, THE EMOTION OF CELEBRATION AND JOY MAY
WORK FOR ANY PRODUCT LINKED WITH FAMILY BONDING.
UNFORTUNATELY, ADVERTISERS ONLY HAVE ABOUT 30 SEC TO GIVE MAXIMUM INFORMATION ABOUT THEIR PRODUCT. THE
TRICKY PART IS KNOWING WHAT TO SAY, AND WHAT NOT TO. THE MOST COMMON MISTAKE ADVERTISERS MAKE IS TO
TRY TO SAY TOO MUCH THAT OFTEN GOES TO WASTE. AT THE PLANNING STAGE, NARROW DOWN TO MAXIMUM TWO
STRONG POINTS YOU PREFER TO HARP ON ABOUT YOUR PRODUCT. IT COULD BE CONVENIENCE, LOW COST, LUXURY OR
EXCLUSIVITY. THINK WHY SHOULD ANYONE BUY YOUR PRODUCT?
THE CALL TO ACTION
THE ADVERTISEMENT MUST HAVE AN OBJECTIVE TO DRIVE THE VIEWER TO ACTION. HOWEVER, MANY EXTREMELY
SUCCESSFUL COMMERCIALS DO NOT EVER ASK THE VIEWER TO DO ANYTHING. THAT IS BECAUSE THEY ARE USING AN
IMPLIED CALL TO ACTION, WHICH IS TYPICALLY TIED TO THE EMOTIONS THEY WANT YOU TO FEEL.DRINK A COLD DRINK
AND FEEL REFRESHED IS AN IMPLIED CALL TO ACTION. THE CALL TO ACT COULD BE SUBTLE OR HARD HITTING BUT IT
SHOULD EITHER TELL THE VIEWER TO BUY OR GET THEM TO WANT TO BUY.