Looking for ways to get more traction for your messages? Here are five tips to help you write better copy that really connects with your audience.
1 Be sure you really know your audience
- What do they want from you?
- What are their problems?
- What do their want to hear?
You need to write from your audience’s perspective, rather than your own. You may want to say many things about your product or service: your audience has one simple question – how will it help me?
Make sure you write about benefits, rather than process. Go out of your way in your copy to show you understand the problems your audience face. Get them nodding in agreement with your words.
A simple but effective technique is to ask a question – like the first one in this blog.
2 Paint a picture
Don’t just tell people they need your product or service… help them see for themselves. Build sentences that trigger a memory, or evoke a mood, or paint a picture:
- “Imagine standing to make a presentation – and you are not a nervous wreck…”
- “Picture an audience of 200 people – and they’re hanging on your every word…”
Sentences that begin with words like ‘imagine’, ‘remember’, or ‘picture this’ help to trigger a memory that transports your reader into the centre of your narrative.
3 Keep it personal: write in the second person
The more you write about ‘you’, ‘your’, ‘yours’ the more your help the audience picture themselves benefitting from your product or service.
The purpose of copy writing to to quickly enable the reader to see tangible benefits for themselves from your product. Second person references like ‘you’ or ‘your’ achieve that objective really quickly.
Avoid too many first person references to ‘I’ or ‘mine’… it can be a clue that your are thinking about yourself more than your audience.
4 Make it easy on the eye
A mass of grey text on a page is off-putting. Use every device you can find to make it more appetizing.
- Build in more paragraph breaks. Don’t go more than three sentences without a double space paragraph break.
- Use bullet points to break up the text.
- Use bold or colour to catch the eye.
- Write less, and allow white space to make your text easier on the eye.
5 Answer the ‘so what?’
You want to promote your product or service. Your audience wants proof it will help. Understand that as a reader glances over your promotional copy, he or she is constantly hearing a skeptical inner voice asking ‘so what?’, or ‘where’s the proof?’ or ‘how will that help me?’
Be clear about the questions, and answer them clearly in your copy. The more you include phrases that begin with ‘because’ the more chance you have of convincing your reader.
Why do your need TalkitOut presentation skills coaching? Because it will free you from nerves, liberate your authentic voice, and develop your leadership skills.
Neil Everton has distilled a lifetime’s experience with some of the world’s top news organizations into his Media Mastery training aids for anyone worried about talking to reporters. The video, books, e-books and workbooks are available in the Podium Coaching online store.