Copywriting Tips for Everyone

“You get a copywriting tip! YOU get a copywriting tip!” *in Oprah’s voice*

I was going to try and start off this post with something clever, because I’m talking about copywriting, after all. I figure you all will be expecting me to blow you away with some industry secrets mingled with a little humorous commentary and this-is-so-easy-I-could-do-it-with-my-eyes-closed type content.

If I’m being honest, I can’t do that. The truth is that copywriting is absolutely killer. It’s not so-easy-I-could-do-it-with-my-eyes-closed.

I know that’s a great start and you’re probably really excited to hear what I have to say now. Clearly I’ve got the “in” you’re looking for. Bear with me. What I’m trying to tell you here is that copy isn’t something you can just whip up and throw onto your site. Really good copywriting takes time, thought, and multiple drafts.

I want to help you create the best copy you possibly can because it’s one of the main ways you present your business to consumers. To help you do that, you need to have a realistic view of what it will take. I’m all about being practical, and you came here for copywriting tips. So, here are my 3 tips for great copywriting.

1. Nail Down Your Rhetoric

Not all copywriting tips are super technical, but this one needs to be. Rhetoric as it pertains to writing says that there are at least three things you need to be aware of if you’re trying to persuade your reader to want what you got: audience, voice, and purpose. Before you write a single bit of copy, think about these three things.

  1. Audience: Think about what your ideal client would need to hear from you in order to understand and want your product or service. What would most effectively persuade that person to utilize what you’ve got over something else? This can be the hardest part of copywriting because you have to put yourself in your potential client’s shoes and give them what they need.
  2. Voice: You’d probably write about yoga in a different voice than you’d write about solar panels. Use the personality of the product you’re writing about. Keep your voice uniform as well. You can choose how you want your copy to come across (casual, funny, businesslike) but it needs to be the same across all pages and platforms. Wolf & Key has been working on this for a long time. Whether you’re looking at our website, blog, or social media, you’ll find we use the same voice throughout. It wasn’t an easy task, but it’s absolutely vital to our brand.
  3. Purpose: Every piece of copy on your site should have a purpose, so make sure you know why you’re writing what you’re writing.

Before you start on anything, you have to nail down your rhetoric and fully understand your audience, voice, and purpose. Each is equally important and each needs to be clear to both you and your audience.

If I’m being honest, this is one of the most important tips for great copywriting anyone can give you. We reiterate this all the time around here. Getting these three things down, and being consistent, is step one to having a successful business.

2. Use Your Story

Seems simple, right? That’s because it is, but people still don’t do it because it’s harder to implement than you think. Every single one of us has a unique story. We’ve each had our own experiences that brought us to where we are now. You had a journey to get where you are, so tell your potential clients and customers about it. Give them the inside scoop on you. Every piece of copy you write should be a reflection of you and your story. There is a lot of copy out there that people are reading every day, but there is only one person with your story.

Using your story looks like adding personality and real life experiences into your copy. When you’re writing your “About Us” page on your website, make it actually about you. A great example? This. When you’re writing blogs, connect them to your company somehow.

People are sick of the generic stuff they see every day. Use your story to set yourself apart in every aspect of your copy. This is part of appealing to the ethos, or emotion, of your audience.

3. Be Helpful

This part’s a big deal, you guys. If you’re out there just writing up copy but it’s not doing anything for your potential client, what’s the point? People tend to think they need to get someone to buy or sign up before giving them anything. The truth is, if you give someone something helpful from the get-go even before they buy, you show them that you’re the expert and that you genuinely care about their well-being. Then they’ll choose you before they choose anyone else. They’ll want to work with you because they trust you and they feel like you care more about them than their money. In today’s society, that’s a big deal.

Being helpful looks like this post you’re reading. It looks like giving out free information to your readers whether you’ve gotten something or not. Whether that’s in the form of blog posts, email newsletters that include things people actually need to know, or video tutorials. Use those copywriting skills to just be helpful.

Those are my tips for great copywriting

Hopefully they help at least a little. Copywriting and learning how to do it well is a continuous process. Keep these copywriting tips in mind, make your copy something people actually want to read, and you’ll be on the right track.

And, for goodness sake, use proper grammar because it does actually still matter.