Quite often, individuals or businesses don’t understand the importance of copywriting or downplay its importance – claiming it’s easy and anyone can do it.
That’s true. Anyone can sing too – but that doesn’t mean everyone should sing.
Everyone is capable of copywriting, but to be a good writer, you need to understand the distinction of each genre, style, medium, and more. For example, just because someone can write a nonfiction book, doesn’t necessarily mean they can write poetry; they are two very different styles of writing.
Similarly, just because a person can write a fiction book doesn’t mean they can write advertising copy that captures its target audience and sells.
What is copywriting though?
Copywriting is not just about putting a few nice words and sentences together.
It’s about understanding your audience and addressing their needs.
Senior Conceptual Copywriter, Clare Barry, says, “Copywriting, in its traditional sense, is the art of describing things in a way that makes other people want to have them.”
Copywriting is about getting to the core of what your business and brand is and joining together its purpose, vision, and brand image (Are you funny? Are you serious? Or, are you cheeky?) and spirit into a story.
A story that resonates, connects and is powerful.
Presenting complex things into their simplest form, creating interest when there isn’t much, evoking emotion into advertisements that can make you laugh or cry, is the fundamentals of copywriting.
It’s marketing, sales and psychology intertwined.
So, why is copy important?
The million-dollar question.
There are countless stories of businesses who have written their own website copy, emails and blog content.
Sadly, more often than not, they then wonder why no one is opening their emails, why they’re not ranking in google or why they’re not receiving any visitors to their site.
Yet, they have no SEO, backend meta descriptions, keywords, boring copy, and a site full of jargon, spelling and grammatical errors.
The moral of the story? You can spend all the money in the world building an “out of this world” website or email campaign (applies to all marketing messages) that has all the wrapping paper, ribbons and glitter.
But if your copy is boring, there’s no SEO on your website, no brand tone, no strategy…
Chances are, no one is seeing your website, reading your emails, or is completely oblivious to your business and brand.
Good vs Bad copy?
So what is “good” copy and what is “bad” copy? To sum up in a few short bullet points:
Good Marketing Copy
- Evokes feeling
- Tells a story
- Sounds human and is conversational
- Is clear and concise
- Captures brand personality and tells you something useful
- Is respectful of the reader’s time
- Is written for an intended audience and a medium.
- The list could go on...
Bad Marketing Copy:
- Hollow, flat, inhuman
- Lacks a narrative
- Full of jargon and goes on and on
- Not targeted towards anyone
- Fakes human or forces a ‘voice’ to the wrong audience and medium
- Relies on cliches to fulfil a personality
- Over promises and makes empty claims
- The list could also go on…
Writing great copy is crucial to your business and brand. It establishes trust with your customer. It grabs their attention, it piques their interest, it creates desire and ultimately it is what gives them the information they need to click ‘buy’.
“Just as design turns heads, copy turns minds.” – Smack Bang Designs