What do Tim Ferris, Hugh Heffner, Jay Ogilvy and Russell Brunson all have in common? They are all brilliant copywriters.
Copywriting teaches you how to think about marketing, sales and human psychology. Copywriting is a high-income skill that can be leveraged for your own business or other people’s.
So what is copywriting? Copywriting is not about writing. Copywriting is closing in print. Copywriting is closing for introverts too :).
Many people think that they can write copy but they can’t. Copywriting is not about funny, fluffy, flowery or cool words. Copywriting is an art and it has tested and proven techniques that work over and over again.
Here are the next 4 of my 13 copywriting secrets which if implemented effectively, will supercharge your ability to generate customers on every medium that contains words.
5) Write the way you talk
Remember. You are not writing – you are closing.
Your customer needs to feel that you are talking directly to them. Write the way you talk.
Do you remember the old days back at school? Reading a boring school textbook for homework. Eyes threatening always to close. Going back through a page over and over again because your mind drifted away to daydreams of things less complex? Remember that boring school social studies teacher who drolled on and on while you scribbled doodles all over your textbook?
Why write like a boring old dried up school teacher who hates his job and is just going through the motions?
You are probably thinking ‘Hey! I work with business owners and professionals. Don’t I need to talk like that and use big words?’. No!
People want stuff delivered simply. Keep it simple. Just because you keep it simple doesn’t mean you can’t keep it professional.
People don’t want to spend a lot of effort to understand you. If you make them feel this way, they will put your copy aside and say ‘I’ll come back to it’ (but they rarely do).
When you are writing copy, picture your ideal client sitting in your office directly opposite you. Picture you closing that client. You’d ask questions, wouldn’t you? You wouldn’t want to confuse them or bore them, would you? You wouldn’t want them looking uncertain or concerned that it’s all too hard.
Every headline and paragraph thereafter must be clear and serve a purpose. The purpose of the first headline is not to make a sale – its to read the first paragraph. The purpose of the first paragraph is to make the customer read the second paragraph. And so on!
As soon as things get complicated, boring or confusing, you have lost the reader.
A good way to get this right is to record yourself instead of writing. You can record yourself on the phone and then go to rev.com and get it transcribed cheaply and quickly. Then you have a quick, inexpensive and engaging foundation for your copy.
6) Focus on pain instead of pleasure.
We do things for two reasons. To gain pleasure or avoid pain. Human beings are far more motivated by avoiding pain than gaining pleasure. Think about some of the last decisions you made and see if you agree.
People don’t buy their way into something, they buy their way out of something. They want to buy something to get out of the situation that they are in.
What are people complaining about?! Find out! Talk about it. Show them that you understand!
The more you tell, the more you sell!
Not selling? You aren’t telling enough. You aren’t explaining enough. You are not selling enough.
Remember, nothing you write is too long if it’s compelling. Helping people escape pain is extremely compelling.
7) Demonstrate your expertise (subtly)
Value. Value. Value.
Do you think consumers these days are more sceptical and have more choices? Talk to potential customers like they are sceptical. Assume they don’t like you, don’t trust you and don’t know you.
What do you have to do? What do you have to say to get them on board and out of the shadow of this scepticism?
Offer value up front first. Remember, all successful business deals are a byproduct of adding value first.
Asking questions adds value. Showing that you are interested in your customer adds value. Demonstrating you know your customer adds value.
Offering tips and tricks add value by being helpful and enticing the reader to know more.
Results and numbers add credibility that you have delivered what you are saying you can, and make for great stories.
Statistics and research show that you can back up what you are saying.
Testimonials are fantastic. They are miniature stories from other people! Stories sell. Most people these days will take a recommendation from a friend or associate over the words of a company. Add people’s success stories to yours.
8) Explain what makes you unique
There are 3 types of businesses (tip the top 2 are almost the exact same thing).
Me too businesses
Me better businesses
Me only businesses
Don’t be the same as others. Don’t be better than others (everyone says that!). Be different.
It is better to be different than to be better.
What is your unique selling advantage?
It answers this question:
Why should I do business with you vs every other option out there including doing nothing?
What makes you unique? What makes you different?
Not this: ‘We are the best. We are the biggest. We care. We offer more!’ (zzzzzzzzzzzzzz).
Who out there isn’t saying the above? I can tell you the ones that are competing on price are.
The reason businesses simply compete on price is that they haven’t given the customer any other criteria to buy from them. If customers can’t tell the difference between you and your competitor, they have to compare you on the price!
Be what your competitors aren’t and double down on finding out what is special about your company.
Stay tuned for part 3 of copywriting secrets coming to you soon!