by Dennis Smith, Featured Contributor
INTERNET Content Copywriting has become the art of “drawing them in”. I want to share some of the tricks for doing just that. This goes for copywriters and business owners as well.
Let’s Get Started?
As you read your tips, it is assumed that you…
- Have identified your targeted reader. You know what they want or need. You will give them info on how to get it.
- Know the difference between original, curated and aggregated content.
- Know the online plagiarism regulations and penalties. And how to avoid them.
(Curata has published a great free ebook that covers all these subjects – and more.)Now Your Tips… How can your copywriting content create interest & lead to results (sales, requests, phone calls, whatever…)? Obviously, we can’t cover everything. But here are some of my favorites that I use all the time.
1. Talk to your reader & in the first-person. Talk to them, not at them. Remember to put yourself in their place & solve their problem. Trust me – they really don’t care about anything else.
2. Include calls to action. Never assume your reader understands what you want them to do from your pitch copy. Specifically tell them what, when how & where. Make it easy to respond. Remind them constantly if you need to. Those long pitches used in Multi Level Marketing (MLM) letters are a good example of this.
3. Use questions wherever possible – especially in titles & subtitles. This encourages interest & mental interaction & is one of the best kept secrets in copywriting. Right? (See, you mentally answered “Yes”, “No” or “Maybe”.)
4. Make sentences & paragraphs short. You are working under spatial & attention limitations. Sentence fragments work. Starting a sentence with ‘And’, ‘But’, ‘So’ or ‘Because’ is perfectly fine.
5. Make it scan well. The accepted rule is you have 30 seconds or less before someone clicks away from your page to competitorville. Use subtitles, bullets & bold to highlight important points. Summarize your paragraph’s content in the first sentence & then bold it. Remember the majority of readers will just read what’s bolded, not the whole article.
6. Break the rules. Writing for the Internet has created a unique copywriting style. Examples. LOSE THE CAPS – (It has been proven that words in all caps make readers psychologically feel like you’re screaming at them.) Drop useless adjectives, acronyms and jargon phrases (seen as a waste of time). Colons, semicolons, commas have all joined the dinosaurs. Use an ellipse (….) for colons, a dash (-) for semicolons and or commas. If you want to avoid using ‘and’ all the time, try an ampersand (&). Parenthesis ( ) are good for asides – and honestly – including a tidbit you don’t know where to put elsewhere.
7. Use white space & eye movement factors. If you can break a paragraph into 2 with a leader in the middle, that’s good. This manipulates the eye movement of your reader & can help you highlight important points.
8. Beware of “below the fold”. 90%+ of users will not read what they can’t immediately see. That means if they have to scroll to read more – no matter what size their screen or type of device – they probably won’t do it.
9. Keywords have lost ground to content but still matter. Some keyword agreement between the title, subtitle (if you use one) & the first sentence of the paragraph is still important. Now you have 9 ways to reach your audience. Good luck.