Our Approach to Writing High-Performing Copy
If you’ve ever tried to put pen to paper, or maybe fingers to keyboard, you would know that writing high-performing copy isn’t that simple. Not only do you need to know the value of your brand or product, you need to know how to articulate what it means for your target audience. Learning to write persuasive copy that converts is not easy. It’s a skill that can only be honed over time. Fortunately for you, we share our formula for producing well-written landing pages, emails, and sales collateral that converts leads into customers. In addition to sharing our approach, you’ll also get recommendations of some power words you can use to improve the performance of your marketing and sales copy.
Members of our experienced copywriting team employ the AIDA formula. AIDA stands for Attention, Interest, Desire, and Action. It was popularized by copywriting legend Gary Halbert. From start to finish, the formula structures the specific stages to include on any piece of writing that aim to elicit a response.
The first step is to capture a reader’s attention. If you don’t get it, your copy will unfortunately never be read or abandoned. This typically can be measured by email open rates or web page bounce rates. Begin by grabbing the attention of your lead with an attractive headline or subject line that’s relevant to the target audience’s desires. The attention grabber needs to be relevant, and it needs to tie in naturally with both the brand’s identity and the audience’s needs in order to be effective.
The next thing to do after getting the reader’s attention is to catch their interest, to leave them with an unwavering desire to continue reading past the headline. Let’s start by piquing their interest with the opening 1-2 sentences, a slight nudge to get the reader to read deeper into the copy. Examples of a strong opening include a personal or business story, a question for the reader to ponder, or a description of a problem or solution that the reader can relate to.
After piquing their interest, the next step is to leave them wanting your product or service. Here we must explain how the product or service will enrich their lives. This can be expressed through bullet points that describe benefits or even a short, fact-driven paragraph. You must vividly describe how your solution can optimize space, finances, increase confidence, or productivity. One way desire can be achieved is by aligning the benefits of your product or service with the needs of the buyer.
After impressing your reader with how your product or service will help them, the next step is to invite them to take action. Call to action (CTA) examples include buy now, click to call, request a demo, schedule, learn more, register here, or reply to an email.
Connect Benefits to Realities
Effective copy should connect all the logical and emotional points of your product or service to deliver a better experience for the target audience. One way to communicate this experience is to use the “so what” hack. Simply read through the features and benefits in your product or service copy on your landing page, pause, and then ask yourself, “so what?”
We live in an age of instant gratification and constant distraction. Our prospects and customers do not have the time or attention span to read every detail. When it comes to high-converting sales or marketing collateral, we need to articulate the desirable experience that your product delivers as quickly and succinctly as possible.
Peep Laja’s, founder of CXL, high-converting copy instructs us to “Focus on articulating the value people will get. Make sure the copy makes it clear who it’s for, and what pain it helps to avoid or gain it helps to achieve.”
If you can answer the question “so what?” in your copy, you can bypass the usual barriers between you and your customer and instead go “straight to the conversation now.”
Convey What Makes You Unique
Another way to engage readers, or if you want your brand to be memorable after the reading is said and done, is to convey your brand’s story. Differentiate your brand from the rest, whether that be with an anecdote about how or why the product or service was created, the history of the brand or its founder. You could even provide an explanation of what the brand stands for, including the values that permeate and define your company. In a nutshell, your brand’s story is what you are beyond the product or service. We can call it your brand’s essence, its personality and character at the core.
Brand stories can come in all shapes and sizes. Our client KL Injury Attorneys places great value on the simplicity of its process for clients, a unique narrative that we have conveyed through the client’s copy, from its landing page to sales collateral. And while some of our clients’ stories revolve around values, others revolve around the history of the brand. GSD Contracting has 40 years of commercial building under its belt and a history of developers, architects, and business owners placing great trust in the company’s expertise.
With a real story to grasp onto, brands can connect to readers and customers on a level beyond the product or service. A story that stands out to a reader or piques their interest can go a long way in differentiating your brand from competitors.
Simply put, write like your brand is talking. Writing in a conversational way is about having the conversations you want to have with your ideal customer while being personable and addressing their pain points. Don’t mistake this for being long-winded with your copy. Remember one of our earlier points was that people do not have the attentive bandwidth for saturated copy. You can be conversational and speak to your value proposition and/or your target audience pain points using fewer words but still not lose the meaning. The goal is to be relatable without the bloat.
A single word change can have a drastic impact on perception. When trying to grab someone’s attention or to get someone to take action, the right word has the power to increase or decrease response or conversion rates. Pick your words carefully and deliberately to make an impression. Once we’ve written the first draft of a landing page, we’ll go back and inject certain words that pack a punch into the copy.
With the tools now laid out, take that pen back to the paper, put those fingers back on the keyboard and take a stab at writing some high-converting and persuasive copy. Remember, it’s not a simple skill that will be learned over night. It’s a skill that our copywriters have refined over time and that has become a powerful asset our agency can offer clients.