Marketing copy is all about making connections. As a marketing copywriter, your level of success has a lot to do with how your readers react to what you write. People connect with the product or service that your clients sell because they relate to what you’re saying to them. They want to feel that your copy is specifically crafted with their interests and needs in mind. In other words, it should feel personal.
What is content marketing?
Content marketing involves using text to make customers and potential customers more aware of a customer's brand. This text can be Web articles, blog posts, eBooks or write papers. Unlike newspaper and traditional magazine articles, good content marketing does more than just report. Good content marketing copy connects with readers and makes them want to use your client's product or service, either right away or at some time in the future.
How to connect with content
Sometimes, making your content feel personal is easier said than done, particularly when you're facing a fast-approaching deadline. And, if you've been a copywriter more than a few years, finding new and fresh ways to express similar thoughts can sometimes be a challenge. Below are a few ideas to help spice up your copy, solidify your relationships with clients and help them use your content to secure more sales:
1. Make it "shareable."
A good marketing copywriter realizes the power of social media sites. Garnering a few "shares" and "likes" with a piece of content can expand your readership exponentially, as readers' friends see your interesting post and share it with their friends and their friends' friends. I recently had a post I wrote for a small non-profit's Facebook page with a membership of 50 end up with more than 2,000 views, thanks to repeated sharing and liking. Write copy that your readers will want to share with their friends and watch your exposure explode.
2. Don't be afraid of the first person.
Unlike newspaper-style articles, marketing copy benefits from sharing personal experience. After all, you're trying to get readers to relate to your words. Most journalism schools will tell you that the first person point-of-view is only appropriate on the editorial page. Throw out that piece of advice when writing marketing copy. According to Andy Crestodina, writing for the Content Marketing Institute, storytelling is one of the five most important things you can do to add excitement to your copy.
3. Check your own buying habits at the door.
I'm often guilty of this. I think that because I wouldn't spend X amount of dollars for a top-end coffee machine, trip to Fiji or the latest convenience food, that no one else would either. A marketing copywriter owes his client the skill and objectivity to think (at least for the time he's working on the client's article) that his client is selling the most desirable product or service on the planet.
4. Make unexpected connections.
Making unexpected connections, like tying your client's new power tool to Flag Day (how to create a new flag pole, perhaps), can inject new life into an ordinary subject.
5. Sell without mentioning the brand.
This may sound counter-intuitive, but according to Joe Pulizzi, the head of the Content Marking Institute, "your story travels further the less you mention your brand." This idea stems from the fact that Web readers are tired of being constantly bombarded with overt brand marketing. Instead of writing "buy me, buy me," write copy that makes your reader want to reach for your client's brand without being asked.
6. Add visual interest.
Just because you're a marketing copywriter doesn't mean that you only deal with words. Adding compelling images and/or videos to your copy can increase reader interest, attract more "shares" and keep site visitors on your page long enough to read your brilliant copy.
Writing marketing copy that excites and makes a connection with readers is a skill that takes time to develop. However, the time you invest in honing your content writing skills will certainly pay off with satisfied clients who offer you more and more work as their businesses grow as a result of your writing.