The aim of the copywriter is to persuade the viewer, listener, or reader to take action, i.e. to buy a product or pick up a different viewpoint.
It’s very common for brands to write boring and generic copies without realizing the potency of the tool they are just allowing to waste.
This results in poor sales. Low customer traffic. Poor commissions.
If you know exactly where to wield your copywriting tool, you would use it to cut a large slice of heaven in your marketing campaign.
This is possible if you take the time to write good product descriptions, then you can assuringly look forward to a better conversion rate.
And the best way to wield your copywriting tool properly is to have potent copywriting ideas and examples to stimulate you.
This guide underpins what copywriting is; the best ideas to adopt and great examples to motivate your copies in your content marketing campaign.
Table of Contents
What is Copywriting?
It’s the process of writing persuasive words that inspire or motivate people to take a specific action.
When you open a magazine and there’s a full-page advertisement selling perfume, the words on that page are what define copywriting.
When you go to a website that prompts you to purchase something, the words on that page are the result of copywriting.
The content you write on Facebook points potential customers to where they can get a chilled bottle of beer for the hot weather is a copywriting practice. Copywriting is almost everywhere you turn, look and listen.
Who is the face behind copywriting? Behind every copy is a copywriter. Copywriters are creative minds who are trained to craft words in a way that will connect with the target audience and move them to do something. Most businesses recruit an in-house copywriter or on a contract basis to help them communicate with the public.
It’s very important if you don’t confuse copywriting and copyright. The two are just homophones (same pronunciation) that can be easily confused while writing as well as speaking, however, beyond that the two words don’t have a relationship.
Who needs copywriters?
Every business that plans to communicate with its public needs a copywriter. From sole proprietors to large businesses, no brand is too large or small to use the services of copywriters. Copywriters can find engagement with:
#1. Solopreneurs: Individuals who start and run their businesses independently like interior designers, party planners, graphic designers, and coaches.
#2. Advertising agencies: brands with teams that help a variety of customers with the many aspects of marketing.
#3. Fortune 500 brands: The 500 largest U.S. brands ranked by Fortune magazine.
#5. Brick-and-mortar retailers: Traditional street-side businesses providing products and services.
Startups: Businesses in the early stages of operations, founded by one or more entrepreneurs developing a product.
#6. Non-profit organizations (NGO): Organizations that don’t operate for a profit such as public charities, trade organizations, foundations, and social advocacy groups.
#7. Online Vendors: Businesses that sell goods through the internet.
The need for copywriting persists no matter the business type or industry because a fundamental part of running a business is driving a specific action from the target audience.
To drive action, you need people to be aware of your business and need to guide them down the funnel you want them to take.
Weaving words that effectively influence the audience in a certain way requires knowledge and skill.
And that is why brands require to use copywriters to run their courses.
Great Copywriting Ideas
#1. Do more research
Copywriting and content marketing begin with research, period. Before you write any website copy, blog post, or social media post, you need to first understand what your or your client’s audience will respond to.
Good copywriters will commonly refer to research as a way to understand customer pain points, however, I like to think of copywriting research as a way to find out what message will engage your target audience, keep them interested, and send them down sales or conversion funnel.
Finding out what triggers engagement is vital when writing a good market copy. That’s why if you don’t research your customers, every minute you spend writing new copy, or working on content strategy to fit it in, and that is a complete waste of time.
#2. Inject Personality in your Copy
Have you ever stumbled onto one of those websites that look pretty great but read like a phone book?
Lots of beneficial information, but the copy is dry, blank, and has all the personality of a brick wall. An easy way to fix this is to add a touch of personality to your copywriting. Easier said than done, you would say?
Whether it’s a lack of creativity or poor copywriting skills, many make the mistake of thinking that conversion copy needs to be unexciting and uber-corporate.
I’m here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be that way. One way to fix this is to write the way your audience talks.
Another way is to tell a powerful story and keep your copy conversational all to the end.
#3. Refine your headline
A headline is the most important part of every piece of copy. Your headline is a vital part of getting your audience to read the body of your copy.
8 out of 10 users read a headline, but only 2 out of 10 will through the rest of the copy. This means that 80% of headlines aren’t strong enough to arrest readers.
Headline writing, more than anything else, determines the success or failure of your ad copy. Research reveals 60% of people never get past your headline.
That is a massive drop-off, so if your headline is poor, it doesn’t matter how great your content is, it is never going to attract the eyeballs of your market.
A great headline has to pull your reader in. It has to capture their attention and make them eager to find out more about what is buried in the body of the copy.
#4. Simplify your copy
Simplifying your copy doesn’t necessarily mean trashing the technical jargon or writing to a seventh-graders comprehension level.
It means making your message clear and concise so your target audience comprehends your offer and gains as quickly as possible.
Popular copywriter Eugene Schwartz puts it better when he said: Write to the chimpanzee brain – simply and directly.
#5. Read your content aloud
Unless you are writing a podcast or video script, it’s easy to forget that even marketing copy will not just be consumed but read.
And when people read, they sound out and hear the words as a part of their inner speech in a process called subvocalization.
So read your writing aloud and make sure to listen. Did you trip over any sentence or phrase? Did you catch an accidental rhyme or a tricky string of words? Did you have a hard time going through the lines? If so, you may like to rewrite it.
#6. Give your Key customers what they want
“Give your key customers what they want” is probably one of those phrases you have heard over and over.
If your copy doesn’t deliver the kind of results you are looking for, it’s probably that there is a disconnect between what you are sharing and what your target customer is hoping to find.
So, how do you know what your key customer wants? How do you deliver the sort of content experience that may result in loyalty from this key customer? How do you ensure that more applause and bravos keep coming from your customers?
#7. Tell a story in your copywriting
Storytelling is one of the most successful copywriting strategies albeit hard to pull off. Great stories do one thing and are very good at that: Inspiring emotion. When humans are emotional, they are more prone to take action, remember, and connect.
The first important element of a good story is that it’s relatable. You want the reader to see themselves in the story so they align and connect with the solution.
Emotion itself can be motivated through techniques like suspense and empathy. Alternating between positive and negative emotions is another way to keep readers glued to the copy.
#8. Summarize your copy in a single sentence
This is a great copywriting exercise for getting yourself unstuck or for starting a new copy.
Consider what you are writing: the format, the purpose, the scope, and the audience. Then, summarize in one sentence.
A summary is written in your words. A summary contains only the ideas of the original copy.
#9. Make the copy visually fascinating.
People like pretty-looking stuff. It’s no different when we are talking about copywriting. You either make it look good to the eyes and hold readership or suffer the aftereffect. But, how do you make a visually-fascinating copy?
Spice your copy with images. Your copy must bring in an image at least one image for every 500 words.
This number is not fixed and cast in stone and you can vary the number of images in your copy to your preference.
However, you must ensure that you have sufficient images to break that wall of text. Please note that when we say images, we also mean graphs, illustrations, and infographics.
#10. Justify your value by making comparisons to other products
Communicate the value of your product, and let your copy tell a customer the number one reason why a product is best suited for that particular customer.
Help them weigh the consequences of buying your product over not buying.
Your copy should be persuasive enough to help turn a prospect into a paying customer.
#11. Have a clear call-to-action
This very small component of sales copy can often make the biggest difference in the performance of copy.
Whether it’s a “click now”, “register now”, call or whatever must be direct and simple.
#12. Write a copy that is focused on the customer
Writing sales copy that sells is no longer about being self-promotional. Your customer wants to read copy that’s of value to them, not the ones that laud you and your brand. Here are ideas to help you achieve that, write copy that is:
#13. Sound Like a Human Being
Unless you are selling robots or to robots, please don’t talk like them. There is no issue speaking casually when talking face to face with your target customer, however, whenever you sit down to write as a copywriter, you have to go full formal.
Businesses have been boring their audience with their sales copy since the stock photo was invented. Perhaps longer.
Which is cool. But there is a place for that, for now, keep your lengthy brochures. Keep away from the 45-minute PowerPoint presentation.
Explain to your customer every important aspect of your product, your mission statement, history, and benefit, that picture of your founder with his arms folded and seated in an arms chair.
#14. Develop Solution Stories
Develop a story to compel and motivate the potential customer, and paint a verbal picture that clearly illustrates how the problem can be solved.
“Mark was this frustrated business founder who was on the edge of bankruptcy, whose family and friends lost faith in him, and out of desperation tried one last idea that changed his life forever”
#15. Focus on the Destination, Not The Road or the Vehicle
This is one of my favorite copywriting ideas. Potential buyers are not so interested in the features you are reeling out. They are looking out for benefits.
“When purchasing weights, customers aren’t doing it because they simply admire weights but because they want the lean and healthy body shown in the ad.”
Impressive Copywriting Examples You Need to See
Articulate is a U.K based inbound marketing agency, with great copies on their website. I have come across one of these copies that are so full of witty, confident copy on pages where you wouldn’t think you’d find it.
Articulate has nailed the pun game in this copy. It’s cheesy in a good way and makes them more appealing and relatable to job seekers.
Most people don’t want to just be a cog in a brand`s machinery, so by adding some touch of humor, Articulate sets itself apart from other corporate competitors in the market.
The copy above introduces Articulate’s Meet the Team page, and not a page you think can pull off a witty copy, right? Well, Articulate’s page goes beyond staff photos and job portfolios.
In addition to the playful informal header, “not the usual blah blah,” the copy above centres on a farm theme, assuring visitors that staff isn’t simply “caged hens.”
Instead, they are a free-range, artisanal, cruelty-free team.
Moosejaw’s use of humor in its copy builds an emotional connection with website visitors, delighting them while offering information they can use.
Not many companies are brave enough to touch the products they are selling with an offbeat copy, but Moosejaw isn’t afraid to have a little fun around its marketplace.
The outdoor apparel outlet store leverages humor as a way to sell its products without being overly forward about it.
By appealing to users’ emotions, this type of copy is more engaging and memorable to customers.
#3. First Round Capital
First Round Capital utilizes language to empathize with its readers. Starting a brand is challenging, and First Round Capital knows that and conveys they are there to help.
While a sign of good copywriting is making people smile, another is making them feel understood.
The copywriters at First Round do a wonderful job at letting the value of their offerings for their clients sell themselves.
For instance, they hold over 80 events every year linking their community together.
Rather than just explaining that they have events and then rolling them out, they begin that section of their site with a simple statement that hits close to home with many start-ups: “Starting a company is lonely.”
Leveraging words like “imperfect,” “vulnerable” and “safety net,” motivates readers to let their guards down and feel more understood by the company and their community.
Plus, you have got to love that last line about stick-on name tags.
Trello’s text is clear and concise, which is exactly what users need to learn, and how to use the product.
Switching project management software can be tasking. Trello’s copy makes sure new users don’t get stuck behind.
Some of the use case clarity can be associated with how smart the product is, but I think copywriters also merit some credit for communicating it clearly.
They call it like it is, which eventually makes it really easy to understand.
The team at Scott’s Cheap Flights positions themselves as travel sector insiders with their handy pro strategies and down-to-earth lingo.
Scott’s Cheap Flights is popularly known for finding discount airfare, but they have branched out with various offerings, including guides.
Members feel like they are getting information from seasoned specialists, and they can pair these tips with photos of the staff that gave them.
This small, but beneficial addition builds a connection with website visitors and improves the brand`s credibility.
#6. Huckberry’s Storytelling
Without checking, I’m willing to throw a guess that you have endless unopened promotional emails in your inbox, collecting digital dust and cobwebs, starving for attention, and likely to remain unopened and unread forever.
While one way to blast yourself into the customer`s mind, as author Al Ries would say, is to write subject lines that appeal to, motivate and inspire the audience, another, more realistic, long-term approach, is to become unforgettable.
Moreover, it becomes so unmistakable to the point that the reader doesn’t even read the subject line of the email or see your name, before opening and clicking through.
One retailer that has had that influence on me is Huckberry. Not because I’m a loyal fan of their brand, per se. Rather, because their promotional emails are some of the best in the industry.
Below is a typical example of their sales copy. The email starts with a story, before progressing into a benefit-driven presentation of a new or returning product and ending with a clear, concise, and no-nonsense call to action.
Anyone can be a successful copywriter with the right brand voice and a little editorial guidance along the way.
Get inspiration from the copywriting ideas and examples above