Delivering sales growth in today’s buyer-centric marketplace is not easy. No one can give you a simple mathematical formula for success. Many entrepreneurs depend heavily on SEO. Others expect to win the market with clever, unique, sharable content. Yet, at the foundation of any solid content strategy is simple, good copywriting that engages readers.
• Constant evolution of technology is having an effect on your customer. They feel empowered to chose based on what they find on their own and in your content.
• The sheer volume of information available makes it hard engage new buyers.
• Google is shifting its algorithm to favor high-quality content over high-volume content.
The time has come for every business to gain a basic knowledge of copywriting (or hire a pro). With the ability to gather data about what type of content your reader wants, everything you need to know is available for learning the skill. This series is a tiny, little bit of what you need to know to compete in the race for quality copywriting and sales growth.
Part 3 of the 5 Part Guide
Principals of Writing Effective Web Content
1. It’s Not About YOU…
Sales organizations have been talking about what they offer for centuries. About 50 years ago, sales trainers succeeded in convincing the sales professionals to talk about the ‘benefits’ to the buyer rather than the ‘features’. It’s time for another big shift.
You must invest time and attention into defining your ideal client and speak directly to a single entity you have identified. Copywriting to an ideal client is the focus of Lorrie Morgan-Ferrero. She calls it a ‘Tarket’. Get access to her 3-Step Tribe Defining Template here.
2. Telling Stories and Other Tricks…
In the battle for your customer’s attention, there are a few tricks to being noticed. Telling stories is one of the best. Believe it or not, a personal story – particularly one that shows how you messed up – can be one of the most powerful ways to engage readers.
A copywriting genius from New Zealand has mastered the art of storytelling. It is part of what he teaches at PsychoTactics. Master the art of storytelling and you will win over readers in a way that certainly leads to sales growth.
Another copywriting trick is using current events and trends to capture attention. I have written articles about fifty shades, sales leads that suck, Lady Gaga vs Madonna and many other current topics. I don’t write for any media outlets. These articles were about sales growth tactics.
Pay attention to hot topics and search for a way to twist them to fit your message. Pay particular attention to the language of your ideal client. When your written content mirrors the way your customer talks, it will lead them to trust you. Trust equals profit for your business.
3. You Gotta Have a Hook…
Big companies invest a ton of money developing very professional looking games, info-graphics and interactive maps. If you have the money or time and skill to follow their lead – do it. The result may be phenomenal sales growth when your content is shared. It might even become viral.
For most small businesses, that type of content is a budget-buster and a big gamble of resources. The Content Marketing Institute defines: “A hook is, quite simply, a unique content concept that is designed to ensnare and trap your unsuspecting audience into consuming and sharing your content.”
The most common ‘hook’ is your headline. We talked about that in Part 1 of this series. The headline is simply not enough. Begin watching for moments that your reader will recognize. When they identify with a self-deprecating remark, they see you as human. That level of customer relationship is a big hook in today’s overwhelmed environment.
Find humor, incite curiosity. Ernest Hemingway got lots of attention when he wrote a short story in six words, “For Sale: Baby Shoes, Never Worn.” Another hook that will always be remembered is the shortest verse in the Bible, “Jesus wept.”
Your hook may not be immortalized like these. However, if you know your ideal client well enough, you will know how to ‘hook’ them into what you have to share. Once you set the hook, you are on the road to sales growth.