Picture of a typewriter with a crown and question mark as keys.

Copy is Still King

How many times have you landed on a flashy website with stunning imagery and high-tech design, only to be met by a wall of text full of meaningless jargon? While your corporate logo, colors and designs are essential to your identity, the words you use to tell your story are perhaps even more important to your brand. In a world where people are constantly on the go and looking for instant gratification, how can you make sure your copy converts?

Customer-Driven Copy Helps Increase Conversions

“More than one-third of businesses today will not survive 10 years.”

More than one-third of businesses today will not survive 10 years.[1] While running out of cash can contribute to a business’s demise, poor marketing is almost always in the mix. A recent poll of 101 failed startups reported that 14 percent of the founders blamed poor marketing for their company’s failure.[2] The fact is, you can have a great product or service and all the venture capital in the world, but if nobody knows you exist or why they should care, you’re not going to get very far.

Products and services sell when you get customers excited about them. You can wrap your offering up in the brightest package with the prettiest bow, but if the customer doesn’t know what it is or why they need it, they’re going to pass it by. This is where crisp, persuasive copy comes into play. Businesses that harness the power of words from the start can tell a better story, engage the intended target audience and keep them from closing their doors for good. The fact is, words matter.

To demonstrate this, let’s look at a few real-life examples that have everything to do with choosing the right words:

  • Hubspot recently featured a company on their blog that increased their conversions 105.9 percent by having a clear call to action leading to a whitepaper, informing visitors about the company.[3]
  • Arlington Plastics Machinery implemented one simple paragraph rewrite and a more effective headline, increasing sales leads by 150 percent.[4]
  • Michael Aagard, a self-proclaimed “test junkie, copy fanatic and content evangelist,” has experimented with everything from headlines, long- and short-form copy and calls to action. During one test, he found that replacing one word in a website’s call-to-action button nearly doubled clicks. Changing “Start your free 30-day trial” to “Start my free 30-day trial” increased the conversion rate by 90 percent.[5]

Simply improving your copy, using accurate targeting methods and even testing your efforts if you have the means, can be enough to boost your conversion rate by up to 300 percent.[6]

How to Write Effective Copy

You could be the most skilled writer in the world, but this talent won’t do much for your business if you’re not converting your website traffic and advertising leads into sales. So, short of going back to college for journalism, what can you do to craft great copy?

Picture of pencils next to a notebook.

Tell a Story

Everybody loves a good story, and copywriting is storytelling. Harnessing storytelling’s magnetic force in your print collateral, advertising, website content and social media efforts will help you capture and keep your readers’ attention and persuade them to take action. If you can do that, your writing will change what would otherwise be facts and information about your company, product or service into memorable stories – and memorable brands.

Avoid the Wall of Text

Picture of a wall of copy, reading "blah, blah, blah ..."On average, people leave a web page within 10 to 20 seconds, so you have to grab people’s attention immediately.[7] Most people will simply scan the content provided (in print or online) unless they’re actively seeking information about your company, product or service. You must be careful not to scare your potential customers away with a “wall of text.” There’s nothing wrong with having a lot of text on a page, but make sure it’s skimmable. Some easy ways to make your copy more digestible quickly:

  • Write a clear and engaging headline
  • Ask rhetorical questions to engage readers
  • Bold important information, benefits and sentences
  • Break up long paragraphs
  • Use bullets and numbers, when possible

Be Positive

Do you notice the difference in the following two sentences?

  • Increase conversions with better copy!
  • Stop struggling with ineffective copy!

Chances are the first sentence leaves you feeling more optimistic while the second builds up tension. Negative copy tends to describe an absence, or what isn’t happening, while positive copy describes something more tangible. Choosing positive words over negative ones tend to have a better impact on readers, giving you your desired result.

Keep it Simple

“If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.”

As Einstein once said, “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” When it comes to effective copy, nobody wants to sift through wordy, complex text to get to the bottom of what you’re trying to say. Keep it short, sweet and direct.

Use Fewer Nouns and More Verbs

Generally speaking, action words (verbs) tend to engage readers more than nouns. In fact, Dan Zarrella, a social media scientist, analyzed 200,000 tweets that included links, and found that those that included more adverbs and verbs had more clickthroughs than those using more nouns and adjectives.[8]

The words you use to describe your company, product or service can not only inspire passion for your brand, but they can make a huge difference in your bottom line. Mary Pomerantz Advertising knows how to bring your business – or your client’s business – to life with engaging copy. Whether you need copywriting for marketing campaigns, advertising, websites, scripts, blogs, white papers, press releases or social media, we can help your company stir emotion and spur action. Contact us today at 732-214-9600 to learn more.