Copywriters are like a cult…
Okay, that’s a bit dramatic…but we really want to teach you how to do your copy the most effective way possible.
And first, it’s understanding that copywriting and content are not the same thing. They complement each other, sure…but they both serve two different purposes.
Copywriting is used to move people to take ACTION…we use it to make the sale.
Content basically does everything else…inspires, engages, moves, demonstrates problem solving ability, etc.
Really smart marketers have a good mix of traditional copywriting and new age content marketing to make the best marketing baby you’ve ever seen (helllooo Gerber baby of words)
So let’s go before our traditional copywriting gods and appreciate 5 strategies you’ll want to steal from their brain:
#1: Headlines – HEAAADLINES
Let’s be blunt…if your headlines sucks, NO ONE reads what follows it.
Your ad isn’t read. Your website isn’t scrolled. Your email isn’t opened. Period.
Put a weak, flaky, or confusing headline on even some of THE best content the internet has ever seen …and it’s gonna sit there unread. Even someone with a die-hard audience needs to persuade them continuously to keep getting their attention.
Your headlines will help with that.
Keep in mind, even the best headline can’t salvage awful content…BUT it will get them to click your content nevertheless and your engagement will increase.
#2: Find your Value Prop…your big ole idea
As someone in content marketing, I know you’re not writing pages and pages of boring, dry facts that just answer questions for people (or at least I hope you’re not…)
You’re likely producing info that educates and entertains your reader…and you’re centering it around your value prop…your big ole idea.
Remember when the iPod was first invented and we lost our minds that we could have “thousands of songs in our pocket?”
Yeah…that was their value prop. Their big idea to break the mold and invent something that hadn’t been done before.
So think instant communication of a super wanted benefit…and compress it into a memorable statement.
Don’t just blend into the sea of others in your industry. Frame your content with a compelling value prop then market the heck out of it.
#3: Research, research, research
Let’s get to the heart of the matter. The power, the force, the overwhelming urge to own that makes advertising work, comes from the market itself, and not from the copy – Eugene Schwartz
If you’re a good copywriter, it’s because you’ve done the research and you’ve gathered all the building blocks to assemble your copy. You’ve basically been an obsessive student on the topic you’re writing about.
Find the places your audience hangs out for info, devour them, and then go beyond. Go beyond popular blogs, busy websites, and frequented social pages…find the rare resources and tap into those.
Be so obsessive about your topic that your spouse worries about your mental health…then you’re ready to assemble epic, obsession worthy copy on your topic.
Typically, the best value props are found within obsessive research…you see the needs, you find the gaps…and then you fill it.
#4: Find the starving crowd
Gary Halbert, one of the greatest copywriters of all time, used to teach that the key to a successful restaurant wasn’t the chef, the food, or even the service…it was finding a starving crowd that needed and wanted a restaurant and what you had to offer.
This applies to any type of business.
When it comes to direct marketing, the most profitable habit you can cultivate is the habit of constantly being on the lookout for groups of people (markets) who have demonstrated that they are starving (or, at least hungry) for some particular product or service. – Gary Halbert
Your “starving crowd” is your audience — the people who are hungry for what you’re saying, exactly as you’re saying it.
And what’s really cool is once you determine your starving audience, you can straight up ask them (or creepily observe at a distance) what they are hungry for…and you can continue making content that directly feeds it.
Back in the day, traditional marketers paid a lot of money pushing out forms and response lists to people to fill out.
Luckily, we’re living in 2022 and we have a plethora of information at our fingertips. We can listen to our audience, observe their patterns, see where they hang out, watch their socials, etc.
It’s much easier to give your audience what they want because there’s so much at our fingertips to observe. You’re easily set up to meet their desire where it’s at.
Getting the product or service right is great marketing….but when you pair it with rock solid persuasion skills, you’ll be unstoppable.
#5. Know your direction
Copywriting always serves a specific purpose. You’re trying to urge a specific action or behavior. If that action happens, ding ding ding! You’ve won. If it doesn’t happen, you’ve failed.
Content marketing allows a little experimentation, although you still want to develop an idea of what each piece of content you create is intended to accomplish.
It could be more email subscriptions, taking your course, education on a new product, selling your video marketing packages etc.
You can accomplish a lot of that with content AND copy.
But you should never just hit publish and see what happens. There should always be intent. purpose. research. etc.
How about you?
My team values roles of traditional copywriting with modern content marketing. It’s basically what we are founded on.
Do you have a favorite old-style copy tip that meshes seamlessly into the new world of content and social media? Let us know about it in the comments …