Copywriting for Beginners Part 3 of 3: How to Persuade | Alan Sharpe | Skillshare

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Copywriting for Beginners Part 3 of 3: How to Persuade

teacher avatar Alan Sharpe, Copywriting Instructor

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

23 Lessons (1h 21m)
    • 1. About this Class

      3:52
    • 2. Give your sales pitch a proven structure

      5:32
    • 3. Write with features and benefits

      5:18
    • 4. Overcome objections

      4:34
    • 5. Be Specific

      3:44
    • 6. Differentiate

      2:45
    • 7. Think Visually

      5:51
    • 8. Overcome doubts with testimonials

      3:33
    • 9. Get your testimonials right

      3:29
    • 10. Give your buyer a deadline

      1:40
    • 11. Offer a guarantee that hurts

      3:24
    • 12. Follow these five tips for better body copy

      2:06
    • 13. Why your copy needs an offer

      3:13
    • 14. Make two offers

      2:07
    • 15. Use these six proven free offers

      4:17
    • 16. Use one of these 10 B2B information offers

      4:04
    • 17. If in doubt, discount

      3:46
    • 18. Improve your offers with this checklist

      3:21
    • 19. Keep them hooked

      3:03
    • 20. Make your copy more personal

      2:05
    • 21. Give your sales pitch with subheads

      1:42
    • 22. Keep your readers hooked with great captions

      3:24
    • 23. Improve your readability

      3:47
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About This Class

Your success as a copywriter depends on your ability to persuade.

As a salesperson behind a keyboard, your job is to persuade people to buy products and services. Your job as a copywriter is not to be clever, or witty, or to win awards. Your job is to persuade.

Welcome to Copywriting for Beginners, Part Three of Three: Persuasion.

I'm your instructor, Alan Sharpe.

I got started as a copywriter in 1989.

In the years since then, I've worked as a freelancer and as an in-house copywriter at an ad agency.

I have written in all of the channels—offline, online, outdoor, mobile and broadcast.

I have written print ads, radio commercials, email newsletters, sales letters, banner ads, product packaging, brochures, factsheets, case studies, slogans and plenty more for Apple, IBM, Bell, Re/Max, Hilton Hotels and hundreds of other clients worldwide.

I got married, bought a house, and raised two kids on my copywriting salary alone.

In case you're wondering, I've been teaching copywriting since 1995.

Why take this course

This course teaches you how to write copy that persuades people to buy.

I teach you the tips and tricks I've learned in over 30 years of writing effective copy.

At the end of this course, you’ll know how to write copy that generates results. You’ll know how to craft copy that persuades.

Course structure

This course is divided into three sections.

Section one is all about persuasion.

  • You'll learn how to give your sales pitch a proven structure.
  • I'll show you how to write using features and benefits.
  • You'll learn how to write copy that overcomes objections.
  • We'll cover testimonials, guarantees, deadlines and other tactics that persuade people to buy.

Section two is all about offers.

  • You'll discover why your copy needs an offer.
  • We'll look at the two main categories of offers.
  • And I'll share with you the many ways you can use offers to boost the power of your copy to persuade.

Section three is all about keeping your readers hooked.

  • You’ll learn how to write subheads and photo captions that keep your potential buyers engaged in your copy.
  • I’ll show you how to make your copy more effective by making it conversational and personal.

This course is filled with practical, step-by-step advice, tools, tips and tricks that I've learned over the years as a professional copywriter.

I use dozens of examples from the real world of copywriting—both offline and online—to teach you to art of writing persuasive copy.

Is this course for you?

I designed this course for copywriters who want to write persuasive copy, who want to write copy that doesn’t just entertain or inform—but generates results.

If you need to write persuasive copy for a living, then this course is for you.

Meet Your Teacher

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Alan Sharpe

Copywriting Instructor

Teacher

Are you reading my bio because you want to improve your copywriting? Bonus. That makes two of us.

Are you looking for a copywriting coach who has written for Fortune 500 accounts (Apple, IBM, Hilton Hotels, Bell)? Check.

Do you want your copywriting instructor to have experience writing in multiple channels (print, online, direct mail, radio, television, outdoor, packaging, branding)? Groovy.

If you had your way, would your copy coach also be a guy who has allergic reactions to exclamation marks, who thinks honesty in advertising is not an oxymoron, and who believes the most important person in this paragraph is you? 

Take my courses.

I'm Alan Sharpe. Pleased to make your acquaintance. I'm a 30-year veteran copywriter who has been teaching pe... See full profile

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Marketing Business Copywriting

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Transcripts

1. About this Class: Your success as a copywriter depends on your ability to persuade. As a salesperson behind a keyboard, your job is to persuade people to buy products and services. Your job as a copywriter is not to be clever or witty or to win awards, your job is to persuade. Welcome to copywriting for beginners. Part 3 of 3 on your copywriter. Alan sharp. I got started as a copywriter in 1989. In the years since then, I've worked as a freelancer and as an in-house copywriter at an ad agency. I have written in all the channels offline, online, outdoor, mobile, and broadcast. I've written print ads, radio commercials, email newsletters, sales letters, banner ads, product packaging, brochures, fact sheets, case studies, slogans and plenty more. I've written for Apple, IBM Bell remarks, Hilton Hotels, hundreds of other clients worldwide. I got married, I bought a house and I raised two boys on my copywriting salary alone. In case you're wondering, I've been teaching copywriting since 1995. This course teaches you how to write copy that persuades people to buy. I teach you the tips and tricks that I've learned in over 30 years of writing effective copy. At the end of this course, you'll know how to write copy that generates results. You'll know how to craft copy that persuades, that persuades people to buy products and services. This course is divided into three major sections. Section one is all about persuasion. You'll learn how to give your sales pitch a proven sales structure. I'll show you how to write using features and benefits, which is the key to persuasive copy. You'll learn how to write copy that overcomes objections. We'll cover testimonials, guarantees, deadlines, and other tactics that persuade people to buy. Section two is all about Offers. You'll discover why your copy needs an offer to be effective and to be persuasive. We'll look at the two main categories of offers. And I'll share with you the many ways you can use offers to boost the power of your copy so that it persuades people and they respond with their business. Section 3 is all about keeping your readers hooked. You'll learn how to write subheads and photo captions that keep your potential buyers engaged in your copy, reading your copy or listening to your copy. I'll show you how to make your copy more effective by making it conversational and personal. This course is filled with practical, step-by-step advice tools, tips, and tricks that I've learned over 30 years as a professional copywriter, I use dozens and dozens of examples from the real world of copyrighting, both offline and offline to teach you the art of writing persuasive copy. I designed this course for copywriters who want to write persuasive copy. Who want to write copy that doesn't just entertain or inform but generates results. If you need to write persuasive copy for a living, then this course is for you. 2. Give your sales pitch a proven structure: Have you ever noticed when you climb into your car and you program your GPS to take you somewhere, that there are two things that your GPS never offers you. Yeah. Your GPS asks you if you want the fastest route or the shortest route, that's understandable. And it asks you if you want to use highways or avoid them. It asks you if you want to avoid toll roads, but your GPS never ask you if you want to take a random roundabout route to your destination. And it never announces the names of streets you're not going to drive on. Every GPS is engineered and sold based on the premise that you and other drivers want to get to your destination efficiently. When potential buyers read your promotional copy, they expect to be treated the same way. Your prospects expect you to take them on a journey from point a to point B using the most efficient route possible. And they expect you to value their time by telling them only what they need to know. To succeed with today's busy, distracted buyers, you need to give your sales pitch a logical order. Start with the problem. Right at the start of your copy acknowledged that your potential buyer has a problem or a challenge or a pain. Name it in your headline. If you'll like, mentioned it in your subhead, the subhead beneath your headline. Name it in your opening paragraph, just be sure to start with your potential buyers problem. Next, discuss the consequences of not solving that problem or challenge or pain. Show your prospects what will happen if they do nothing or if they choose the wrong solution? And third, present your solution. Show your potential customer how your product or service solves their problem, meets their challenge, or removes their pain. Next, show proof. Prove to your reader that your claims are credible. For every claim you make about your product or your service, or your solution and how it solves your buyer's problem. Show proof. Finally, ask for the order till the prospect, what you want them to do. If you want them to buy, ask them to buy. If you want them to download a white paper. Tell them to download the white paper. Look at this example. It's a full-page ad for a company that manufactures a product for florists. First, state the problem. The problem here is stated in the opening paragraph. Flower transporting gel is new. It lets you deliver flowers across town or across the country with no dehydration and no complaints from your customers, unquotes. The potential customer in this case is flower shops, florists. Their challenge is preventing flowers from drying out, dehydrating before they arrive at their customer's address. Next, discuss the consequences of not solving that problem or challenge or pain. This is also stated in the opening paragraph of this example. The consequence of delivering dehydrated flowers is complaints from customers and a loss of business. Third, present your solution. In this example. The solution is presented in the paragraphs following the introductory paragraph. This product is specially formulated to keep flowers and bouquets fresh and hydrated. It saves florists time and money. It's easy to use. Next, show proof. The manufacturer now shows proof for its claims. It cites a tests conducted by a laboratory in the Netherlands that proves that all types of flowers benefit from being packed with flour, transporting gel. Finally, ask for the order. This ad ends with an offer and a call to action. Order your starter kit today, call 18886687673. This format is a proven and tested way to structure your sales pitch. There's more than one way to arrange your sales pitch. Of course, just as there is more than one way to get from point a to point B. But if you need a simple, efficient way to write your copy, structuring it in a logical, compelling order. Follow this simple structure. You'll make more sales and your readers won't get lost. 3. Write with features and benefits: A consumer doesn't buy a smartphone because it has Wi-Fi operating on the 2.4 gigahertz radio band. A consumer chooses a Wi-Fi enabled phone because Wi-Fi gives a consumer free wireless access to the Internet. 2.4 gigahertz is the feature, but free wireless access to the Internet is the benefit. All of this is to say that your customers by benefits, not features. And yet one of the most common mistakes that advertisers make in their copy is concentrating on features and forgetting about benefits. Here's what I mean. Imagine you're a landscape contractor in the market for a trailer that you can pull behind your pickup truck? You need a trailer strong enough to carry a bobcat or other brand of skid steer small, almost like a bulldozer. So you visit a manufacturer's website and you read about their trailer. The webpage shows photos of the trailer from various angles. Shows a bobcat being driven on to the backend of the trailer. And in other ways, these photographs demonstrate the utility of the trailer. All good. So far. Then you read the body copy. What does it tell you about this model of trailer? Here goes the attitude trailer from Bob cage and Manufacturing features a powder coat finish. The trailer bed is made from seven gauge steel. The bed raises to an angle of 51 degrees. It comes with a storage tray behind the coupler, unquote. Now, if you know a great deal about the kinds of trailers that landscape contractors need, you understand these features may be but because the manufacturer has not explained them and because the manufacturer has not told you the benefits of these features, the benefits associated with each of these features, you are no further ahead in your buying decision. All you know is a bunch of features. Good copy uses features and benefits. Good copy not only lists a product's features, it also describes the benefits of those features. If you and I were writing this copy, we might very well use the same photos that the manufacturer did, except that we would draw attention to the benefits being illustrated in those photos. We would spell them out because customers buy benefits, not features. For example, we'd show some photos or video clips of the powder coat finish being baked on at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. In our copy, we would tell potential buyers that this finish never fades or chips. That's the benefit. The trailer always looks terrific. That's the benefit. Maintaining a strong visual brand over time is a benefit. Then we'd show a few photos or video clips of the trailer bed being manufactured from seven gauge steel. That's a feature. We would tell our buyers that seven gauge steel is three-sixteenths inches thick, much thicker than competing trailers, only ten gauge. And that this thickness means you can drive a skid steer with steel tracks onto the bed of this trailer without damaging the trailer. Longevity is a benefit. Then we'd show the trailer filled with landscapers mulch. We'd have it filled almost at the top, which you a close up of the operator holding the remote control and raising and lowering the bed. We would tell readers that the bed raises to an angle of 51 degrees, the steepest in the industry, which lets them dump seven cubic yards of wet mulch in under 30 seconds. For a landscape contractors speed is a benefit. Finally, we'd show a worker throwing tools into the built-in storage straight behind the coupler. And we would explain that it holds we'll blocks chains and ratchet straps for easy and quick access. Convenience and speed are benefits. There are benefits to showing benefits. You can literally see the difference between these two approaches. One shows you only features, the other shows you the features and the benefits of those features. Remember, customers, whether they're individuals or businesses, buy benefits, not features. So if you are writing copy for a manufacturer or any other client for that matter, make sure your copy includes both features and benefits. The benefit to you of doing so is more sales for your client and repeat business for you. 4. Overcome objections: One of the disadvantages of copywriting is that you are selling on paper or in pixels, not in-person. That means you're unable to read your prospects body language. You're unable to hear and overcome their objections. And yet one of the advantages of copywriting is that you are selling on paper or in pixels and not in person. Face-to-face, a prospect can interrupt you. They can change the subject. But on paper or on a computer screen, even a mobile device, you remain in control as long as your prospective customer keeps on reading, you control the sales process. Another advantage of copywriting is that you can anticipate objections before you start writing, and you can answer them in your copy. You can even start your copy with a common objection that you get from potential customers and you can answer it square on. Here are three common objections and ways that you can overcome them in your copy to make your copy more persuasive? Objection, number one, we don't want it overcome this objection by presenting benefits that your reader may have overlooked or may never have considered, assume that your prospect understands the benefits of your product or service only in a general way. Here's an example from an ad aimed at mining companies in Canada's north. These companies think they have to wait days for replacement parts for the pumps because they usually do, quote, we reduce your downtime because we ship your replacement transformer in under three hours, guaranteed. We lead the industry in in-stock emergency transformer replacements. One headache for mining companies is downtime from failed equipment. If you are a typical supplier of pump parts, their objection to your sales pitch is that they don't want your service if it takes days for you to deliver a replacement part. So being a smart copywriter, you address this objection right upfront with the first few lines of your copy. Objection, number two, you are too expensive. I can't afford you. Overcome this objection by describing the quick return on investment that your prospect will enjoy. Assuming the restaurant, of course, or show how buying a competitor's product is actually more expensive. Once total cost of ownership is calculated more expensive than buying your solution. Here's an example, quote. Yes, you will save money in the short term by buying a blow ducks 52, 36 from our competitor. But our nay DAG 7, 8, 7, 6, last longer two years longer. Which means you will pay a $125 less per month for the life of our machine compared with its closest competitor, unquote. Objection. Number three, we already have a supplier. Overcome this objection not by badmouthing your competitor, but by stressing benefits that your competitor does not or cannot offer, or show how your competitor isn't really a competitor because your company concentrates only on selling the product in question. While your competitor sells a great deal more, making them a generalist. But you are a specialist, if that is the case, of course. For example, quote, your current supplier certainly has a well-earned reputation in our industry for a quality product. But my firm delivers a comparable product backed by better after-sale service. We offer you the personal customized service that larger firms cannot match, unquote. If you are new to copywriting and you don't know the common objections that potential clients raise to your copy, to your pitch, then talk to your sales force. The Salesforce are your best source for understanding how to turn a prospects no. Into a yes. And you do that by anticipating objections. 5. Be Specific: Lily Tomlin, the American comic, once said, When I was growing up, I wanted to be as somebody. Now I realize I should have been more specific in copywriting as in life specifics, cell and generalities don't consider, for example, a direct response ad that I have in front of me these days. I tore it from the May 2006 issue of Harper's Magazine. This ad faces and almost impossible sales challenge a couple actually. First, the product that it promotes is the ROM, a range of motion exercise machine that retails for $14,615. That's impossibly expensive. Second, the machine promises to give you the benefits of a complete physical workout in just four minutes. That's, that's almost impossible to believe. And third, the manufacturer is selling a high ticket item on paper and not impersonal, that's almost impossible to do. But I think the folks at Rome, a ROM fab in North Hollywood, California know what they are doing. They are likely to sell plenty of these machines using their direct response ad because they packet with specifics and not generalities. Consider they have a specific price, not 14 thousand 599, but 14,615. That's an odd number. They have a specific workout, exactly four minutes a day. They have a specific thesis. Over 92% of people who own exercise equipment and 88% of people who own club memberships do not exercise. That's their case. Hence the appeal of their exercise machine that requires only four minutes of exercise a day. They have specific proof. Over 97% of people who rent the ROM for 30 days wind up buying it. So it must deliver on its promise of a complete workout in four minutes. That's what a potential buyer thinks. They have specific credentials. They're not award winning, but they are the winner of the 1991 popular science award for the best of what's new in leisure products. That's a specific award. To be credible, you must be specific. Offer more credentials manufactured in California since 1990. The cost is under $0.20 per use. The copy explains how they calculated that number. They have a specific offer, a free DVD or video that demonstrates the product. They have a specific call to action. They don't say visit our website for more information that would be general. They say order a free DVD or video from fast exercise.com or call the toll-free number. These specifics help ROM fab cell and impossibly expensive exercise machine using direct response copy in a simple magazine display ad. Notice that the offer is not to buy the machine, but to order the free video, then rent the machine. That's the easier. So when your product is costly and your sales proposition is hard to believe or implausible or needs a lot of proof, then overcome objections with specifics and use an offer that moves the buyer off the inertia seat and use a call to action that requires little commitment. That's the secret. 6. Differentiate: For two winters, I hated my house with an old fashioned wood-burning stove. I learned the art of reviving a bed of dying coals each chilly winter morning by adjusting the kindling, the firewood, the dampers just so that the stove would heat my turn of the century farmhouse for the longest period of time possible. Overnight. I had the choice of four vendors to buy my heartbeat from. All were local, all sold at the same price and all had the same quality of hardwood, but only one supplier, a character called Joe maser, advertised same-day delivery at no extra charge. Joe got my business. Joe got my business because he differentiated himself from his competitors in a way that appealed to me. You need to do the same to remain competitive with your copy. You need to decide or discover what makes you different from your competitors. And you need to promote that uniqueness in your sales copy. Just make sure that your differentiator is compelling and actually differentiates you. Quality service is not a differentiator, it's a given and everybody promises it. So as on-time delivery and the ability to meet budges, it's a given that you'll do that, instead, differentiate your firm or your product or your service based on your competence in the industry or your market category. Or be the first at something, or invent something. Just make sure that your differentiator is relevant and attractive to your prospect's job. These are also had a great guarantee. If you know anything about heating your home with a wood stove. You know that Joe sold and delivered his wood by the bush cord. What's a bush chord? You're wondering, a bush cord measures four feet wide by four feet high by eight feet long. It's a lot of wood. He dumped it in a big pile in my front lawn and I had the stack it in neat rows around my property by hand. He dumped it with a huge dump truck. And here's was here was Joe's guarantee. He always said it to me with a straight face but with a twinkle in his blue eyes, he says, I dump your eight bush codes of wood in your yard, fits my talk. You try to vote. If you don't like it, you bring it back at night, give you news though. That's a good guarantee. 7. Think Visually: A picture is never worth a 1000 words. A picture that demonstrates a product or a service in use rarely communicates Everything that the manufacturer wants to communicate. Words are needed either in the form of a photo caption or body copy to describe or explain what the viewer is. C. Let me give you an example of what I mean. Can you tell from this product demonstration photo that this riding lawn mower deck has a shell that features dual steel sheet construction that's a quarter of an inch thick, combined for increased strength and spindle support. You can't. And neither can your potential buyers. Imagine that you manufacture riding lawnmowers. For commercial applications like this. You figure that having a photo showing your product in action is a good idea, which it is. So you had at one sunny afternoon and you shoot lots of photos of your lawn care contractor mowing the yard with your mower. You show them are going up hills. You show it going downhill is you show a dying up the yard, down the yard you show the operating doing turns. You show the deck moment up-close to hedges. This is all great, terrific. These are great photos and that would be great video footage. Then you post your photos online and you wait for the orders to pour in. The challenge that you face is that your viewers rarely understand what they are seeing. They don't understand your product the way you do. They do not know the unique features, your products or the unique benefits simply from looking at your photographs or your video. These things need to be explained either with words, with captions, with body copy, or with an audio track on the visual. Visuals are never enough. For example, just seeing a photo of your riding lawnmower does not tell a potential buyer that your mower has a unique hydraulic wheel drive system that lets them or rotate on its own axis with a 0 turning radius, your buyer probably doesn't even know what a 0 turning radius is. That feature and that benefit needs to be stated explicitly. Neither do your photos explain how the deck lifting system works. Your photos may show the operator depressing the foot pedal and then they might show the deck raising to adjust the cutting height of the mower. But your viewers will not understand that this operation that you're illustrating, that you're showing to them is also done hands-free. Unlike competing products is done with a foot, not what the hand that needs to be explained to the reader. Simply showing the feature in silence is rarely enough. You need words to add an explanation. You need words that will describe what the viewer is actually seeing. The key thing to remember about product photos and product videos is that they illustrate, rather than state. Your photos, should show your potential buyers something that the potential buyer has just been told that you've just told them the feature is first stated, then it is illustrated. The product benefit is first stated. Then it is shown or illustrated. You must remember that your potential buyers have differing levels of familiarity with your product and your product category or your service and your service category. In keeping with our example above, some buyers of commercial riding lawnmowers don't know what a 0 radius turn is, and they don't appreciate why this feature is a benefit to them. They are rookies. If they see that feature being demonstrated in a photo with no captions and no explanatory body copy. They may not appreciate what they are seeing in the photo or in the video that illustrates that 0 radius turn. Other buyers are more sophisticated and they understand the features and benefits of commercial riding lawnmower as well. But every product, every service is unique. And these potential buyers need to be told in explicit terms why your riding lawnmower is better than competing models. And then they need to see that difference being demonstrated in a series of photos or a series of video clips. As you can appreciate by now, the secret to avoiding this mistake is to always explain or describe what your readers are seeing in your photos. Never take for granted that your prospective buyers understand what they are seeing. Much of the time they don't. A photo is never worth a thousand words. It always needs some words to help prospective buyers understand what they are seeing. If you want your product photos to be successful or your product videos to be successful, you must first claim. Then illustrate that claim. It's like show and tell except the other way around. First you tell and then you show. You'll notice a difference in no time in increased inquiries from your potential buyers and increase sales. 8. Overcome doubts with testimonials: Your copy must overcome three dots. These three dots are floating around in the skulls of your customers and potential customers all the time. And they surface whenever they read a sales pitch from you or other businesses asking them to buy something. These doubts are really questions that consumers and businesses and buyers have. And that they asked themselves as they are reading your copy while they are deliberating about whether they will buy from you or not. The three questions are these, Can I trust you? Do you understand my need? And will your product or service meet my need? That's it. Three simple questions. In every piece of copy that you write, you need to overcome these questions, these doubts, or you won't close the sale and you won't secure the long-term loyalty of your customer either. One of the best ways to overcome these three dots is with testimonials. A testimonial is a statement made by someone that either recommends, proves, or paste tribute. Let me show you what I mean. A recommendation testimonial consists of a favorable report on the qualities or virtues of someone or something. It usually includes an explicit endorsement. An example would be a statement from a satisfied customer recommending that others buy from you. This type of testimonial helps potential customers to trust you. Particularly if the recommendation comes from someone that the potential customer respects. A proof. Testimonial is a statement that backs up a claim or supports a fact that you make in your copy. An example as a statement from one of your clients who, let's say, used your photocopier toner cartridge and discovered that it delivers over 30% more copies than competing products. Just as you claim that it does. This type of testimonial helps customers see, or potential customers see that your organization understands customer needs, understands their needs. A tribute, testimonial expresses esteem or admiration or gratitude and is something that someone makes to honor or thank a person or a business. An example of this kind of testimony as a thank you letter from a customer expressing gratitude for outstanding customer service. Attention to detail or congratulating a business on receiving an industry award for sales, for example. This type of testimonial shows customers and potential customers that your organization meets customer needs because others have proven that to be the case. As you can imagine, the type of testimonial that you use in your copy depends on your goal. On some occasions, you need to build trust. On other occasions, you need to prove a point. Your success as a copywriter depends on your ability to use the right type of testimonial with the right audience. And you need to do that in a compelling way. Good luck. 9. Get your testimonials right: Testimonials in your copy are valuable because they say what you cannot say. If you say it, you're boasting. But if a satisfied client says it, they are applauding. Here are some tips on using testimonials to make your copy more plausible, more effective, and more profitable. Number one, don't write your own testimonials. As a copywriter. I have a standing policy never to write testimonials for others to sign. I never put words into my potential customers mouth or my customers mouth. That's because customer testimonials have an authentic sound to them that you cannot reproduce with your own pen or your own keyboard. The only change that I make to testimonials that I get from my clients is to correct typos, grammatical mistakes that would otherwise embarrass them or make them look foolish. Number to attribute the testimonials fully. Now for all I know, there may actually be someone a JK in Wyoming, but I do not know JK in Wyoming. And neither do your prospects. Your testimonials carry the most credibility when they are attributed to a person by name and when they include that person's job title and company or where they live. Prospects check up on us marketers. If you know that are not. Google is one of their favorite tools. I once landed a contract with a client who before retaining my services, visited my website, visited my online testimonials page, and he clicked on one of the company links in one of my testimonials and he asked to speak to the person who had given that testimonial. He checked up on me. Number 3, match your testimonials with your target audience. Ideally, you should have an arsenal of testimonials at your disposal, whole filing cabinet full of them for every kind of tactic and target audience. The best advertisements and promotions use testimonials that match the needs and the wants of the target audience. For example, if you are a motorcycle dealer in Chicago, the best testimonial to use when targeting motorcycle buyers is one from a customer in Chicago or its suburbs who was extremely satisfied when buying a motorcycle from you in Chicago? Number four, ask permission. This goes without saying, which in the English language means I'm going to say it. Anyway. Always get written permission from your customers, from your buyers to use their testimonials in your sales letters, in your collateral and in your online promotions. Number 5, turn compliments into testimonials. You don't have to solicit testimonials. If your customers regularly say or write nice things about you, which I hope and imagine is the case. Simply, after you've read one of those complements, ask their permission to quote what they have already said. By the way, if you like this lesson, why not write me a review? Give me as many stars as you want, and write a couple of words. Reviews after all, our testimonials. 10. Give your buyer a deadline: Giving your prospect a deadline for ordering, particularly when that deadline is a date and not simply a period of days, will out pull copy with no deadline almost every time. But you need to be cautious about deadlines. If you're making a time limited offer, give a reason and make it a good reason. Otherwise, your readers may be skeptical, but why you've given them a deadline? Your time-limited offer needs to be plausible. And it shouldn't make you look greedy, like you're in a hurry to get your customers money. For example, order before the June 30 tax increase gives a good reason for responding. Simply saying order before June 30 does not. Also be prepared to see inquiry's die after your deadline passes. If your prospects and customers take your offer seriously as they should, do not plan on receiving any more sales after your deadline arrives. But plan your time-limited offers carefully. If you're cut-off date is too soon, your potential customer may see your offer only after the deadline has passed. And if your deadline is too far off, I mean, way off, weeks away, months away. You encourage potential customers to delay and defer, procrastinate and eventually they forget about your deadline. Remember giving your prospect at deadline for ordering out pull copy with no deadline? Almost every time. 11. Offer a guarantee that hurts: The best guarantee to offer your potential buyers in your copy is one that hurts, hurts you. That is, like you, your potential buyers live in a rip-off society where merchants cell shoddy products and vendors do not honor their promises. In this kind of selling and buying climate, the best way to increase your response rates in your copy and to encourage repeat business among your customers is to offer a guarantee that hurts you but helps your customer. The more that you have to lose, and the less that your customer has to lose, the better off you both will be. Here's what I mean. Make your guarantee unconditional. Let customers know you will honor your guarantee for any reason. Say something like this. If you are unsatisfied with our product for any reason, we will refund your money. Number 2, offer a 100% money-back refund. Don't charge a restocking fee or something else. Don't withhold the taxes. Give every penny back. Say something like this. If you are unsatisfied with our product for any reason, we will refund your full purchase price. Unquotes. Number three, set the length of your guarantee at infinity. Offer a lifetime guarantee. Agree to take back the merchants ice at anytime in the history of the customer, say something like this. If you are unsatisfied with our product for any reason, at any time that you own this product, return it to us for a full refund. Now, offering this kind of guarantee is going to hurt. You'll be afraid of people taking advantage of you. And some will. I had a guarantee like this and people took advantage of me once or twice. You'll be afraid of the pain to your bottom line, and rightly so. But the beauty of offering an unconditional lifetime 100% money-back guarantee is that it helps you lose a few battles, a few customers here and there had been a money, but you win the war, you'll have to give some customers back their money once in a while. And you'll have to take back, use merchandise that you cannot resell. That's totally expected. You'll lose some money. I agree. Maybe you'll lose a little bit of face, but you'll keep your customer. Plus, and this is the most important point. You'll persuade more people to buy from you. Guarantees that hurt, guarantees like this, increase sales. That's why you use them. Remember, this satisfied customers tell others and satisfied customers tell others a dissatisfied customer who returns your product and receives a 100% refund quickly turns into a satisfied customer of sorts. So offer a guarantee that hurts you a lot. You'll feel better for it. Trust me. 12. Follow these five tips for better body copy: Sometimes the easiest way to improve your copy is to go back to the basics. Here they are. Start with your prospect. Not you. Research by Claude Hopkins, George Gallup, and plenty of other advertising giants, shows that readers of advertising and promotional messages are interested more in themselves than they are in the advertiser's product or service. So Emir messages at the prospect and say everything from the prospects point of view. Don't begin your copy with we or us when you can begin the copy with, you. Remember to start in the middle. Never begin your buddy copy by repeating what the reader already knows from your headline or your visual. Start your body copy with your next point, the one that follows from your headline and your Visual go right to your main selling proposition with a wallop. Number 3 starts selling in the first paragraph, as Ogilvy said, fire your biggest cannon first in the first line of copy. Promise, readers of benefit, give them a reason to continue reading. Number four, be relevant. Good copy is interesting to read, but not everything that's interesting belongs in your copy. So stick with your main selling proposition. If your facts aren't accurate, you'll lose credibility and you'll lose the sale. Number 5, present useful information. Each piece of copy you write must tell your readers something useful that they didn't know. Whenever possible, present hard, real-world tips, facts, and advice that help prospects make responsible, informed decisions about your products. That's it. 13. Why your copy needs an offer: In copyrighting the offer is the incentive or reward that you dangle in front of your prospects to motivate them to respond to your marketing message. In business to consumer direct mail, for example, a magazine publisher will offer a yearly subscription to its magazine at 60% off the newsstand price. That discount is the offer. The offer motivates prospects to subscribe now and to save. 60%. Offers are vital to the success of just about any marketing copy. You need to motivate action. Without a clear, compelling offer, your response rates will be low and your promotion will be unprofitable. Here's why you need an offer. Number one, your prospects are preoccupied. The people you're trying to reach are just as busy as you are. They avoid salespeople. They avoid things that waste their time. They use called display to avoid telemarketers, and they use ad blockers to avoid ads. You need a compelling offer because you only have one or two seconds to grab your prospects attention. Don't expect that your company name or your product name or your products top feature will grab their attention. Use a compelling offer. Instead. Reason number 2, your prospects don't care about you. That sounds kinda harsh. Stated like that. But your prospects don't care about your company. They don't care about your qualifications or your product features or your service per se. That means your copy has to meet your prospects where they are not where you are. You have to start by saying you rather than WE and your offer, if you clearly communicate, it, shows prospects that you care about them. Reason number 3, your prospects are skeptical. Are you tired of advertising hype? Your prospects are two. They read all sales messages with their built-in height detectors in full operation. Your offer has to overcome this skepticism by showing your prospects that you will reward them for taking action. In many cases, you're not asking them to believe your sales pitch. You're just asking them to respond to your offer and to take the sales process to the next step. Reason number for your prospects are self interested. Your prospects are interested in themselves. They don't want to hear about your products or your services or your features as much as what they will do for them. When you offer a free report, for example, promises to save your prospects time, money or effort, or promises to make them more efficient and look good in front of their managers. You answer that question. What's in it for me in a satisfactory way? Remember, in copyrighting the offer is the incentive or reward that you dangle in front of your prospects to motivate them to respond to your marketing message, improve your offers, and you'll improve your response rates. And your sales. 14. Make two offers: In marketing, you are unlikely to reach prospects at the very moment that they are ready to buy. And even if you do, you're not likely to close the sale with just one piece of copy. That's why most buying decisions rarely involve just one step, such as dropping a check in the mail or placing an order using a toll-free number or website. Instead, the buying cycle typically involves looking for information, learning about solutions, comparing brands, deciding on the best option, and then making the purchase. Because you do not usually know where prospects are in the buying cycle. Your copy should try to hook them wherever they are. The best way to generate a response is to present more than one offer. There are hard offers. The heart offer asks for the order such as call before June 18th to say 40 percent off your network installation or book your commercial property tax audit. Now, use a hard offer when you want your copy to generate immediate action, usually in the form of a sale. Prospects who respond to hard offers are usually able and willing to pay right now. Then there are soft offers. The soft offer asks your prospects to raise their hands in a show of interests, but does not ask for an order or a commitment. An example of a soft offer would be download your free copy of our special industry report. Use a soft offer when you want to generate a sales lead rather than an immediate sale. Soft offers identify prospects who are able to buy, just not willing to buy. Right now, you follow up with them and you close the sale. Later on. I recommend that your copy include a heart offer and a soft offer. And that's because you want your copy to generate either a sale or a sales leader. Heart offers generate sales, and soft offers generate sales leads. 15. Use these six proven free offers: In marketing, the offer is the incentive or the reward that you dangle in front of your prospects to motivate them to respond to your marketing message, either with an order or with a request. For more information, offers follow a, you do this and we'll do that kind of format. For example, place your order before June 3rd and will reduce your price by 40 percent or phone now, and we'll send you a free demo CD. Here are some examples of offers that businesses use to sell their products and services using the power of the word free. Each of these offers gives the prospects something for free. Free is still a word that increases the response though it's not as effective as it once was. Because basically readers are more skeptical and because spam filters often delete emails that contain the word. So first of all, free trial. And a free trial customers try your product or service before paying for. An example would be try our product risk-free for 30 days and pay only if you buy. Now the pros of this kind of offer are that it increases the response because it eliminates the biosphere of ordering what may prove to be an unsatisfactory merchandise. But the negative is that it increases the cost of processing orders. It hampers cashflow. Number two, free gift for inquiry. Prospects receive a free gift when they request more information. An example would be call now to learn more and to receive your free 2006 wall mounted day planner. The pro of this is that it's effective at increasing inquiries. But the negative is that respondents are usually less qualified since some of them just want your free gift, not what you're selling. Number three, free information. Here you give prospects information that helps them make an informed buying decision. And the example would be a free catalog of free booklet, free report, a white paper or a video. This is effective when your product is either complex or expensive or both. And what you want is a sales lead, not an immediate sale. It's also useful when you sell more than one thing. The negative of that kind of offer is that it adds to your lead generation costs. Some people collect brochures and have no intention to buy. Example number four is a free product demonstration. You demonstrate your product usually at the prospects place of work or maybe online as well. An example would be call us toll free to arrange a free no obligation demonstration of our XYZ dumped trailer. The pros of this is that it's an effective way to secure meetings with prospects. It overcomes fears and objections. Assuming that your product is good, it gives you the opportunity to answer customer questions in person. During the demo. The negative is that it's expensive when it involves a salesperson going into sales visit. Number five, free analysis. You offer prospects, a free needs analysis or a survey or an audit or a checkup. An example would be to book your complementary no obligation that work safety audit call us today. This is an attractive offer because it gives prospects value and helps them to see how you operate. That helps you to qualify prospects. The negative is that it's expensive when it involves a visit to the prospect's business. It's also time-consuming. Number six is a free estimates. Here you offer prospects, a free estimate of what they will pay to retain your services or buy your products. An example would be to receive a free estimate of your cost to install the new name pro 767. Call us today. This is good because it helps you to generate leads. You get a chance to meet face-to-face with prospects if you do your quotes in person, the negative is that it's time-consuming. Some prospects will just be shopping for best price in your meeting them face to face. Just to do that, others will be checking to see if they got a good deal from your competitor. They've already bought the product or service. It's expensive when it involves a face-to-face meeting. 16. Use one of these 10 B2B information offers: Rarely in business to business marketing, will you close a sale with one marketing message alone? That's because products and services that are sold by businesses to businesses are usually more complex and more expensive than their business to consumer counterparts. A sole proprietor buys a computer upgrade by writing a check. A Fortune 500 firm, on the other hand, buys a computer upgrade by first forming a committee in business to business buying cycles are longer as well. And the buying and the selling process usually involves dozens of steps and more than one person. For that reason. As a B-to-B copywriter, you can almost never entice your prospect to buy simply by offering the same incentives that work in the business to consumer markets, such as discounts, time-limited offers, and buy now, pay later payment plans. In B2B lead generation, you're after a lead, not a sale, but you are unlikely to reach prospects at the very moment. They're ready to buy. Because you don't know who she don't usually know where cold prospects are in their buying cycle and in your sales cycle, your copy should try to hook them wherever they happen to be. And one of the best ways to generate an inquiry is to offer prospects information that helps them make an informed buying decision for their business. Here are some ideas for informational offers. Offer a book. If your company president has literally written the book on your industry or on your solution, then offer the book free of charge as a way to generate a sales lead. Offer a booklet. Pick a topic that interests your prospects and helps sell them on their need for what you are selling. Offer a whitepaper. Offer a paper written by an impartial third-party expert, if possible, offer an article if you've received favorable and recent coverage in the trade press, online or offline, offer a reprint of the article or offer an article that discusses your prospect's business challenges. Offer a case study. A case study, or a customer success story package. Your best case studies into an attractive format. Nice design, an offer that offer a report. A report that deals with the hot issues of the day for your prospect's industry. You can buy reprint rights from an industry trade publication if necessary. Or you can commission your own report. Offer a video. If you sell a product that is best seen in action, offer a video that demonstrates the product solving your prospects problem. Offer a DVD. This is a little bit old school and it's the medium, not the message. So make sure that what you offer on the disk or the thumbdrive is not a sales pitch. And make sure that you offer information of value. Offer a podcast, captivate your prospects during their drive to work. For example, an example of a good podcast topic would be a keynote address from an industry conference delivered by a speaker whose opinion your prospects respect. You can offer that in some kind of a download way that they could listen to on the way to work. You could offer a seminar, a webinar, or a tele seminar, offer valuable insights about leading business concerns. And you should offer the seminar free of charge to attract as many leads as possible. Or you can charge a fee if you want to attract fewer people, but better qualified people. That's it. The top ten. 17. If in doubt, discount: Every piece of copy that you've put in front of your customers or potential customers should contain an incentive that motivates them to place an order or request more information. Indirect response language. This incentive is called your offer. Discounts are effective offers depending on what you're selling and depending on who you're selling it to, offering a discount is likely to increase your response rate. And the number of orders you receive here are for discounts that you can offer your potential buyers. A cash discount. This is the most common discount. You see these all the time in the retail marketplace, you discount your price by a dollar amount or a percentage of the purchase price. An example would be by the ABC send nomadic before 12th of August and save 20 percent off the retail price, that's a 55 dollars saving. The pros. This offer motivates people who need to save money. The con, it's not as popular as offering a free gift that has a high perceived value, but costs you less than the discount. For example, you would likely generate a greater response by offering a free AM FM clock radio with every order, which costs you only 25 bucks, then you will by offering a discount of 25 dollars since the free gift has a higher perceived value than the discount. Number 2, an introductory discounts. Here you let buyers try your product or service for a limited time at a special low rate. An example would be enjoy 30 days of unlimited long distance calling to anywhere in North America for just $5 a month. The good thing about this kind of offers that it lets by our sample your product or service before committing to the full price. And the negative of this kind of offer is that it only works if you can cost-effectively convert introductory buyers into long-term customers at your full rates. Not easy to do. Number 3, an early bird discount. Here you offer a discount to customers who buy before a compelling deadline or buying season. The deadline might be the end of their fiscal year. If you're offering discounted tax forms, for example, the season might be Christmas, where you're offering discounted calendars and cards. An example would be place your order for Christmas stars before July 31st and save 25 percent on your order. The advantage of this is that it motivates people to stock up on an item in anticipation of heavy demand. The negative is that it only works if the deadline is close enough to generate a sense of urgency. But it's far enough away that you do not lose money by pricing too far below your regular, seasonal price. Number 4, quantity discount. Here your clients receive a discount when they order a certain quantity or volume of your product. An example would be saved 35 percent off our regular retail price with orders of a 100 or more. The advantage of this kind of offers that it's a good way to move excess inventory. And the negative is that it's only suitable when you sell in volume. It's not suitable for most services. For example, depending on what you're selling and depending on who you are selling it to, offering a discount is likely to increase your response rate and it's likely to increase the number of orders you receive. Try one of these offers and see what happens. 18. Improve your offers with this checklist: With few exceptions, every piece of copy that you write should contain an offer. The offer is the incentive or reward that motivates prospects to respond to your marketing message, either with an order or with a request for more information. Subscribed to hook, line and sink or today and say 44 percent off the newsstand price is an example of an offer. To be effective, your offers must pass seven tests. Test number 1. Is your offer exclusive? Are you making your offer only to a select few and making them feel that they are an exclusive bunch, or are you marketing year offered to everyone? And his uncle? For example, is your mailing envelope address to occupant? That's everybody. Nobody exclusively. Number two, is your offer valuable? Well, your prospects perceive you're offered to be a value to them. Your offer may be inexpensive for you to offer, but it must have high perceived value to your potential customers. For example, a $100 gift card to the Home Depot has high perceived value to your prospects, but as inexpensive for you to offer if it lands you a sale worth, let's say 5000 dollars. Test number 3 is your offer unique? Is the deal that you're offering only available through your business. In other words, is no other business offering a similar offer. Test number four, is your offer useful? Your offer can be exclusive but useless. An engraved pet rock, for example. Or it could be unique and useless. A bag of sand from the sorrow. For example, make sure your offer helps your prospects save money, save time, do their jobs better or something else? That is useful. Test number 5. Is your offer relevant? You could offer a 40 percent volume discount on the laptop computers to both traveling salespeople and to computer retailers. Both groups, by a laptops, both groups appreciated discount but only one group buys in volume. Your offer must be relevant to your target audience. Test number 6. Is your offer plausible? Some offers are too good to be true, others are silly. I received an email from a spammer a long while ago offering me 1 million email addresses in electronic format for only $240. And he said Order now, quantities are limited. How can anything offered electronically be limited in quantity? It can't. So the offer wasn't plausible. Test number 7, is your offer easy to obtain? The harder you make it for your prospects to obtain your offer, the lower your response rates will be. So, make your order forms clear and simple and short. Make your toll-free number obvious on the page, and make your conditions of purchase few in number. 19. Keep them hooked: Anglers in Maine catch trout using dry flies that have a barbarous hook. Unless they keep tension on the line all the way to the net, they lose the throat. Your sales messages must be the same. But how one secret to keeping busy readers hooked is to use irresistible transition sentences. Transition sentences come at the end of one paragraph and the beginning of the next paragraph. Good transition sentences leave your readers hanging in a number of ways. One of them is to tell your reader that there are a number of things coming up and that forces your reader to transition to the next paragraph to learn what some of those things are. If you've ever listened to a person with a pronounced stutter, you know how hard it is to wait while that person completes a thought. Your prospects are the same. If you almost complete a thought at the end of one paragraph, they will begin reading the next paragraph, the one that follows to complete your thought. But that's not all. Another way to keep your reader hooked through out your copy is to end one paragraph with thats not all. Or a similar thought. Or you can start the next paragraph with the word another. Each of these devices shows the prospect that you have not finished, that there's more, that the prospect more to learn. And so the prospect keeps on reading. And yes, there are some other hooks you might want to try it. You can start a paragraph with the word you. That's the one word that prospects and customers never get tired of seeing in print or seeing online. Or you could try another proven tactic. And that is starting a paragraph with the word and read the Gospel of Mark in the Bible some time. It's one of my favorite books. You'll find the narrative almost impossible to stop breeding. It's that exciting. The main reason is that the writer Mark begins so many of his sentences with and, and Jesus did this and then Jesus did that, and then Jesus did this. And you have to keep on reading. I won't give away how the book ends. You should read it and find out. But there's another device that's just as powerful as the word. And do you know what it is? It's the question mark. Put a question mark at the end of one of your paragraphs with the answer at the beginning of the next paragraph. And you'll keep your reader headed towards your net. 20. Make your copy more personal: The easiest way to increase the effectiveness of your sales copy is to make your copy more personal. Given the choice between reading a flyer and reading a handwritten note from a friend. Most people will read the personal note first. Here are some ways to make your copy more personal and more effective. If you have an envelope that your copy is included in, use, a stamp instead of a postal indicia or metered postage. Handwrite something on the, on the envelope, handwrite the address, attach a post-it note to the envelope signed with your first name or initials. If there's a letter that you're mailing to your customer, attach something interesting to the letter with a paperclip, make it personal. Use a full dates such as Wednesday the 5th of March 2018, use a personalized salutation such as dear Allen as opposed to dear business owner. Start your first sentence with a compelling fact that you know about the reader in particular. Make it personal. Use the reader's name somewhere in the letter without sounding fake. Elsewhere in your letter. Name the reader's company, or named their industry, named their neighborhood or their brand of car or anything else that you know, that shows that you understand the reader. Just make sure that you sound sincere and don't come across as a privacy invading vendor or worse, stalker. If you want to be personal with a letter, sign it by hand. If you're including something in the envelope, enclose a brochure, print it using variable data imaging so that the photos match the age or the gender of the buying profile of your prospect. Print the procedure on the fly, putting the reader's name in the headline or opening line of the copy. That's it. Be personal and you'll be more effective. 21. Give your sales pitch with subheads: A subscriber to my newsletter once asked, got any good pointers on writing great subheads? Well, I do. And here they are. Use subheads to draw attention to your copy. Why did we use subheads anyway? Because you can't just cover the important points in your copy. That's why you've got to highlight key points using graphic devices such as bold type, italics, underlining bullets, and subheads. If one of your key copy points is you're guaranteed, for example, then put the word guarantee in one of your subheads. Subheads help skimming readers. So put vital points in your subhead. Use subheads to help readers that liked to skim as they read. Use subheads to show readers what each section of your copy is about and what it discusses. Subheads lead your readers point-by-point through your sales pitch. This way, readers who only skim your copy, still learn in outline form what you are selling US subheads to break up large blocks of text. Page after page of uninterrupted type is monotonous to look at unless you're reading a novel. But if you break up your copy with a subhead here and a subhead there, you show your readers that there's some respite along the way from all of that copy. Subheads make your copy more inviting to read it. 22. Keep your readers hooked with great captions: One of your challenges as a copywriter is keeping your readers hooked so that they read all of your copy from the start right to the finish. The problem is, many prospects don't read your copy from start to finish. Skim. They kind of hop around as they're reading. They might read your headline. They might read one of your subheads. Then they kinda skip all over the place. They might skip down to your call to action at the bottom of the screen or the bottom of the page that they might read your first subhead. They might look at your photos. They read anything that you've got as a callout. They might if you've got a testimonial on the page, they might read the testimonial. My advice to you is that you use subheads, call-outs and other devices to keep your readers hooked. And one of the most important places to keep your potential buyers hooked is your photos and images. Here are some rules for writing captions that will keep your prospects reading. Rule number 1, caption, every image. Captions are just like subheads. Readers often skim through catalogs, glancing at the photos and reading the accompanying captions when a particular item arouses their interests, they see the image, then they read the caption beneath it. A photo is never worth a 1000 words. Every photo needs some words to explain to potential buyers what they are seeing in the image. If all your readers do is look at your images and read the captions beneath them. They should get a complete sales pitch. So caption, every image. Rule number two, make captions describe something the reader can't see in the image. If your photo shows a man and a golf shirt, for example, don't place a caption beneath the photo that simply says, we have a new golf shirt or this is our new golf shirt. Instead, write a caption that communicates a benefit that the reader can't see and one that the photographer could never capture with a photograph. Bright, something like this. Never a hole in one. Our new Glengarry golf shirt features Teflon fabric protection that forms an invisible shield around fibers for superb protection against tears and punctures, unquote. My third rule for writing captions is to start them whenever possible with a pithy intro phrase. Ideally one that's humorous in five words or fewer captured the essence of what you're saying with a clever wordplay, like the one that I just gave about the Gulf shirt that's made from a fabric so strong that you'll never get a hole in one. Here's an example of how you can do this. It's a caption under a photo of the new iPad Pro, which features a faster processor for better multitasking. The caption reads redesigned from the swipe up. Multitasking with the iPad Pro is easier than ever with slide over and split view, unquote. That caption puts a smile on my face. Your photo captions will do the same if you make them clever, interesting, and laden with benefits that interests your readers. 23. Improve your readability: Why does some copy put a smile on your face while other copy puts a yawn in your throat. Why are some marketing messages harder to read than others? Keeping your reader hooked right to the end of your copy or your sales pitch is one of the hardest challenges in copyrighting. The secret is making your copy easy to read. Entertained, for example, successful copy arouses your interests, makes you laugh, intrigues you in some way, or mix you want to sit down with a coffee and see what the writer has to say without detracting from your main message or reason for writing, try to make your copy entertaining to read. If you want a good example of entertaining, informative writing, read this product description from Moose Jaw. This outdoor apparel outlet uses humor as a way to sell their products without being overly forward about it. By appealing to people's emotions, they're more engaging, memorable. Here are a few examples. It's an ad for the hedgehog, 15 percent less adorable than an actual hedgehog, but 60 percent more durable and now 24 percent off or this ad for their Masonic backpack. Bad days happen, but at least your stuff will be dry. Whenever possible. Match your tone with your reader. Think about your prospects, age, their gender, and their personality type. While you're writing. I once wrote a sales letter aimed at bankers who are in the Fortune 50 group of companies. The tone that I used was way different from the one that I use when I'm running the people who buy shoes online. Another lesson, avoid jargon 24, 7. Unless you're certain that your reader knows when an AV m is 4 or y. Hydrodynamic lubrication starvation is a problem. Then leave out the jargon. In place of jargon, use plain English. That makes your point without patronizing your reader or making you sound like you're a novice to the prospect's industry. Make your sentences short, like this. Prefer the short word over the long word. Vary your sentence length to avoid monotony, but aim to keep your sentences readable in one breath. Short sentences are also easier to understand. Pitch to the right IQ level. Emir selling message at the intelligence level of one of your typical customers. Don't overestimate their intelligence and don't underestimate it. Either. Relax. Don't throw away your Strunk and White or any of your grammar guides, but don't become their slaves. Either. Break the rules of grammar when needed to avoid sounding stiff. And institutional. Apple, for example, once ran a campaign where their marketing slogan was think different. And that slogan is grammatically incorrect. It should have been think differently. But Apple knew that. And they want it to be different. They wanted their customers to be different. So they created a slogan that broke the rules of grammar, but was effective all the same. And it worked.