Words. We all use them daily.
We speak them, text and email with them and read them everywhere we go.
Which is why I’m not all that surprised to learn that many people don’t really see the value in professional copywriting.
After all, they’re just words.
We all manage to communicate with each other daily without the support of a professional wordsmith.
Plus, why would you ask someone else to write about your business when you’re the expert? You will always know more about the details of your business than any copywriter you might hire.
And therein lies the problem.
Are you thinking about your business from your client’s point of view?
Often, business owners I meet can talk endlessly about their business and all of the specifics that make them great at what they do.
But very rarely will my clients discuss how their clients perceive their business.
This could be because they don’t really know or it could be because they’ve been conditioned to only look at their business and industry from an insiders point of view.
There are many clever ways to portray the benefits of your business with your audience in mind and without being self-promotional. But doing this is actually a lot more difficult than it sounds – if you’re not a copywriter, that is.
A copywriter is an expert at absorbing all of the important details, separating the wheat from the chaff and producing clear, persuasive messages that matter to your audience.
Here’s how a good, professional copywriter should approach any new writing assignment.
The focus of a good copywriter
Understanding and adapting
Of course, to produce powerful copy a copywriter must develop an in-depth understanding of the business and industry in question.
A good copywriter must do his/her research before putting any words on the page, not only to ensure that all information garnered is factually correct but also to build an understanding of how things work in that world. Being able to relate to an audience requires a deeper understanding of how that specific business and/or industry communicates between themselves.
Not every writer can do this.
Professional copywriting experience plays a major role in a writers ability to adapt their tone and writing style to suit different situations. Fantastic copywriters will be able to turn their hand to writing for any industry or sector regardless of whether they have first-hand experience in the sector.
Professional copywriters know that every new writing assignment demands a fresh pair of eyes and a new series of research to enable them to put themselves in YOUR customers shoes.
Maintaining brand image
How would you like your audience to perceive you?
It’s a copywriters job to establish a clear idea of how you want to portray yourself to your clients and then it’s their job to make that perception a reality.
Good copywriters will show willingness to help you manifest the desired image of your business through content using carefully considered tone, language and relatability.
Although I will not dispute that you know your business better than any copywriter you might hire, I can confidently assure you that a professional copywriter will convey your message in a more powerful and eloquent way than you might. Because it’s their job to.
The fact of the matter is that average content will reflect badly on your company. Content that is rushed, sloppy or error ridden will not help you achieve your desired perception of your brand.
Focusing on the audience
Copywriting and content marketing is fundamentally about tailoring communications to attract and engage a specific audience.
Today, we face an enormous battle to get noticed which is why understanding your audience and tailoring your content to speak to those people in the right way at the relevant stage of their buying journey is paramount.
Experienced copywriters know how to write for different audiences. They know that copywriting is not about your company; it’s about how the consumers view and engage with your company.
Delivering value online
Ever heard the phrase: “you only get one chance to make a good first impression? This statement is particularly true when it comes to online content.
I’m afraid to say that your online audience have a very short attention span and they won’t stick around on your website for long if you don’t make every sentence count.
We’re living in an age where people are dealing with content bombardment and sensory overload on a daily basis so streamlining your content to include only what matters to the user is an art.
Copywriters will succinctly deliver your message in a clear and concise way to engage visitors and keep them on your site.
Every sentence on your website has to serve a purpose in order to get readers hooked and wanting to read more, and a good copywriter will know how to do this. They’ll tailor content and call to actions to suit what your visitor is looking for at that particular stage of their buying journey.
No waffle; no self promotional spiel; no value compromising content.
Defining the value of copywriting
So we’ve looked at ways in which a copywriter should approach working with a new client.
Now it’s time to look at why professional content deserves your attention and investment.
1. Content guides everything we do
Your content explains to the world who you are and what you do.
Content guides your audience through an informative process and then encourages them to take action.
Content also forms part of the design of your website. It determines which pages you have and how those pages will appear. There’s no point having a slick, well designed website if the words don’t deliver your message in the right way.
2. Content can make or break user experience
Visitors to your website will not read all of your content. In fact, they’ll probably only read very little of your content which is why it’s essential to make every sentence count.
Your copy should give visitors all the information that they need, at a glance.
If your website isn’t user friendly and doesn’t clearly tell your visitors who you are and what you do, they’ll simply go elsewhere. There’s plenty of competition out there.
You must ensure that the words on your page are there for the benefit of your user.
3. SEO (search engine optimisation)
Writing with SEO in mind is an art, and getting web copywriting right can mean the difference between a high volume of visitors and none at all.
Your audience will need to be able to find you online which means that your content will need to be optimised for Google and other search engines .
That being said, experienced web content writers will know that you must write content for people first, search engines second.
This means identifying topics that help your audience find answers and solve problems related to your industry or field, and ensuring that content delivers value to your potential customers.
Good web copywriters will understand how to write for search engines and they’ll ensure you’re not adopting any black hat SEO techniques that could harm not only your rankings but your brand image too.
Why copywriting matters
Words are one of the most important business tools at your disposal and yet they don’t always get the attention that they deserve.
Approach 2019 with a robust marketing and communications plan that places emphasis on how you portray your business and deliver an impactful online experience.
Don’t be content with substandard content. Strive to say it better than the competition. Word.