Online Copywriting 101: Write Copy That Converts and Pleases Clients

Great Internet Copywriters Are Made and Not Born

Internet copywriters have to satisfy two sets up customers; these are, of course, their clients and their client’s customers. While many writers have natural talent, professional copywriters spend time developing their ability to keep clients happy and to attract customers to their client’s business. With that in mind, we’ll cover the basics of doing both, so you’ll be ready to take on your first writing assignments and score many more.

The Creative Brief

Some clients will just give you example pages to study and ask you to follow them for tone and style. However, sophisticated writing clients may offer you a creative brief. These briefs can range from actually being very brief to being very detailed. They may contain notes about the prospective audience, style requirements, and tone.

The audience: As a writer, it’s important for you to to pay attention to any hints that clients give you about their intended audience. A stockbroker may want to communicate with high-income individuals. A plumber may just hope to communicate with average residents of his local area. Either way, your vocabulary, the length of your sentences, and your tone may vary. In any case, you need to keep the intended audience in mind when you write your marketing copy.

The brand’s voice: Each brand should also establish it’s own voice. This is the way that the company hopes to present itself to the world. For example, an insurance company may hope to present itself as reliable and confident. A clothing brand may want a voice that’s either sophisticated and mature or fun and youthful. Writers have their own voices, but to please clients, you’ll want to transform your own natural tone into that of the brand as much as you can.

The style: Some clients may just ask for AP style, Chicago Manual of Style, and so on. Others may just have specific requests. For example, all clients require good grammar, but some may ask you to use or not use Oxford commas or to use sentence case with subheadings. These are picky details in some cases, but conforming to your client’s requests will keep you from getting embarrassing revisions and save time.

Writing Copy That Coverts Visitors Into Customers and Leads

Of course, once you’ve figured out what your clients want, you need to use that to please the client’s customers. Even though your client is paying you, you know that their customers are paying them. Pleasing both your clients and their customers is how you will exceed your client’s expectations and gain steady work.

The way that brands connect on an emotional level makes the difference between researchers and buyers.

Connect on an emotional level: Buyers may research various products and services to make logical purchase decisions. However, the way that a brand connects with buyers on an emotional level makes the difference between researchers and buyers. It helps if you can tell quick stories, solve problems that drove visitors to your copy in the first place, and use other tactics to appeal to your audience emotionally and not just logically.

Use an active voice as much as possible: Yes, you can include some passive-voice sentences. However, you should try to employ the active voice as much as you can. The active voice reads better and faster and keeps readers engaged longer.

Be wary of using jargon: If you’re an expert in the topic, you could have a hard time avoiding using insider jargon. However, plain language tends to appeal to customers. You certainly don’t want to use terms that your audience isn’t likely to understand. Of course, some B2B copy may require industry jargon. That’s why it’s important to understand your audience in order to select the right vocabulary.

Include at least one call to action: The call to action, or CTA, is usually required for copywriting. Of course, you need to tell your audience what you want them to do or they might miss the point entirely! For short pieces, the call to action may come at the end. For medium to long pieces, you might include a CTA in the second paragraph and last paragraph for good results. If the creative brief doesn’t mention a CTA, this might be something to ask the client about or to find in any examples they have given you.

Now you’re ready to begin copywriting. Of course, one of the best ways to develop your skills is to study examples of good writing in your particular niche. This resource about “Simple, Power Words for Copywriting” might also be helpful.

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