Marketing copy is an integral part of any digital marketing plan. It can be used to entice a lead, educate a prospect, or delight a customer. In order to keep your audience informed and engaged, you need high-quality marketing copy, and high-quality marketing copy does not happen by accident.
Do not let an empty word document intimidate you; with just a few tools in place, copywriting can be a breeze.
Here are the tools you should have in place before you put pen to paper (or fingers to keys):
At its core, a buyer persona is a summary of your key buyer. Most companies have three to four. Every company has a target audience and an ideal customer. Essentially a buyer’s persona is a way of organizing your knowledge around your target audience and ideal customer. Every persona should include some demographic details on your key buyer, their motivation, what problems they have, and how your company helps solve their problem.
For example, a powertools company is likely to have a handful of buyer personas. They might include contractors, DIYers, and carpenters. A buyer persona for a contractor will include key information about them, including the fact that they will use these powertools to make money, that they are motivated by work, and some details about how these particular power tools are better for contractors than competitor’s power tools.
Before you start copywriting, develop buyer personas for your target market. Once you have those, only craft content that would be relevant and interesting to at least one of your personas. Buyer personas can spark content ideas and keep you from publishing content that is not relevant to your audience.
A Defined Voice
Every brand has a different voice and way of addressing their target market. Some are zany and fun, like Progressive insurance who leans on the goofy character of Flo to deliver their message. Others are more serious, like Allstate Insurance. It is important for brands to always draft content in their voice in order to avoid confusion within the audience. Your audience will get used to your personality, so changing it up can be quite jarring. Before sitting down to start drafting copy, make sure that you know your brand voice and adhere to it. Incongruent voices can be off-putting.
An Understanding of Your Differentiators
Despite the competitive landscape, every company has something unique to offer. Maybe it is a core process, a dedicated and intelligent team, advanced technology, or diverse experience. Finding and communicating what your uniqueness is can help your audience to choose you over the competition. Differentiators should be highlighted at every opportunity so that your audience knows what they can come to you for and why. Differentiators should make it into every piece of content that you draft. Repetition is key, so highlighting your differentiators repeatedly will help keep them top-of-mind for your audience.
Different Content Channels:
Not all marketing copy is created equal. In fact, each channel demands a different type of copywriting. Blogs are somewhat informal, tweets are quick and to the point, and white papers are academic. Understanding how to write different copy for each channel will help you to be successful when you write for those different channels. Your Facebook captions should not sound like your website copy, and vice versa. You want distinct yet similar tones for each channel.
A Review Process in Place
In order for marketing copy to seem professional and high-quality, it has to be flawless. Typos may be ok in text messages, but professional publications are not afforded the same level of forgiveness. You should not expect your author to be able to catch all of their own errors. Too many times, writers read back what they meant to write rather than what they actually did write. In order to ensure that your marketing content is error-free, you need a review process in place. At least one other person should be reading every piece of marketing copy for grammar, spelling, and thematic integrity. Do not rely on software or technology. Choose someone else on your team (ideally, several people), to read every piece of written content before it goes to publish.
Providing education for education’s sake may be noble, but it will not help you to convert any new customers. If your goal is to convert new customers, you need a call-to-action at the end of every content piece. First, figure out what you want your audience to do. Do you want them to make a purchase? Call you? Fill out a form on your website? Once you know what you want them to do, tell them why taking that action is in their best interests. For example: “Call today to find out more about how our company can help you to succeed.”
Some Go-To Formats
It can be difficult to sit down and start content pieces from scratch. Something about a blank page can be incredibly intimidating. Instead of starting from scratch every time, develop a few go-to formats that you can plug in with different information; listicles are incredibly popular, as is the case study model of problem, solution, results. Put in some initial work to develop content formats, and expedite your writing time.
For example, a blog post format might look something like this:
Title (5-10 words)
Introduction paragraph. Include what the piece will cover and what the audience can expect to learn. (75-150 words).
Bullet list of your key points. (5-7 bullets, 50-100 words per bullet point).
Summary of the bullet list, including what the audience should have learned (75-100 words).
Call-to-action. (25-50 words).
With this toolkit in place, copywriting will become a breeze! You will be able to start producing high-quality content that your audience genuinely enjoys. So get these tools in order and start drafting today!