Copywriting is, in its most basic form, an offsite sales force working on your behalf. You aren't there in person to speak with the prospective customer so your advertising copy does it for you. It answers QUESTIONS potential customers may have about your products or services, provides detailed INFORMATION about the features and benefits you have to offer, and (hopefully) guides them to make a PURCHASE. But one thing in particular that gets overlooked very often is the personal connection. This element is vital in creating copy that sells.
WHY A PERSONAL CONNECTION IS SO IMPORTANT
During an "in person" sales process, a personal connection develops between you and the customer. You make eye contact, share a space together, and may even joke or tell a few personal stories. You get to know your client’s needs -- and your client learns a bit about your personal style and your passion for the product or service you provide. You develop a RAPPORT, and the client gets to know you as a person, rather than just a business logo. This link is extremely important in being able to close the sale. After all, aren’t you more likely to buy from someone you know and have met, rather than a faceless corporation? Being able to create that same BOND through your copy makes all the difference in the world.
TALK JUST TO YOUR CLIENT
There are several tricks of the trade that pros use when writing copy that needs to strike a chord. The most common -- and the most neglected by amateurs -- is speaking DIRECTLY to one person. When you begin to write your copy, think of one customer at a time. In person, you normally wouldn't speak to hundreds of clients at once. You would usually speak ONE-ON-ONE. Relay that feeling and tone of voice in your copy. Rather than writing, “Everyone will benefit from this new, improved cellular phone because...” think of writing “You will benefit from this new, improved cellular phone because...” Use the words “YOU” or “your” instead of “we” or “us.” By speaking to one customer rather than a group, the message is personalized and becomes a bit more friendly.
KNOW WHO YOU ARE TALKING TO
A tactic I like to use is VISUALIZING a particular client as I write. I continually think of this one person as I begin to compose my marketing piece. By TARGETING my advertising message and language to that individual, I am able to write more of a "letter" than an advertisement. I am also able to make the copy personal on an individual level.
AIM FOR A SPECIFIC AUDIENCE
There is nothing more exciting to customers than getting a letter that seems to be put together just for them and their interests. It makes them feel as though you know them and care about their particular needs. While you will need to have some generic marketing items that are applicable to many populations, you can take some steps to CUSTOMIZE your message for the specific group you are addressing.
WHAT DO YOUR READERS WANT?
Start by getting to KNOW your target audience very well. This is the only way you will be able to communicate with them on a personal level. If you are planning to market to hair stylists, talk to your own personal stylist first to find out more about their concerns, needs, and frustrations. Then, you can craft your communication to emphasize the many ways that your products and services will solve those problems. Write using the LANGUAGE of your target audience. Include industry buzz words and jargon when appropriate. And be sure to include personal examples rather than general examples. Again, if writing to hair stylists, include stories, testimonials, and solutions specific to the hair care industry -- not examples of situations that would apply to tax accountants or construction workers.
MAKE A CONNECTION
Customers will feel an attraction to copy that reaches out SPECIFICALLY to them. In a world where most advertisers are speaking to the masses, be sure to give yours an advantage by speaking personally to those you wish to do business with.
Karon is Owner and President of KT & Associates who offers targeted copywriting, ghostwritten ezine articles and marketing assistance. Subscribe to her "Business Essentials" ezine at or visit her web site at www.marketingwords.com.
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