All great copywriters have something in common: They have several copywriting secrets (their “bag of tricks”, if you will) that they rely on to write great copy for themselves and their clients. Obviously, if you know these secrets, then you too can begin to write great copy. And that’s exactly what we are about to share with you.
First, as for any “secrets”, there really are none…
“But James, you just told me there was!”
The only thing that makes these copywriting secrets a “secret”, is that it is simply information that others know that you may not. If that’s a ‘secret’ then so be it.
Now, here’s the reason I am telling you this…
I don’t want you to get sucked-in by some unscrupulous copywriter who’s just trying to sell his or her crappy copywriting courses – courses that do everything but address these six fundamental copywriting secrets.
How do I know about these unethical copywriters?
Yep, you guessed it…
I made that mistake too; bought their crap!
Okay, enough on the backstory, let’s take a look at these six “copywriting secrets”…
Copywriting Secrets for Writing Great Copy
[clickToTweet tweet=”Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication – Leonardo Da Vinci” quote=”Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication – Leonardo Da Vinci” theme=”style3″]
1. Write in Your Readers Language – I’m sure you are fully aware of the importance of writing high-quality copy. However, what you also need to keep in mind is to write in the language of your reader. In other words, you want to join the conversation they are having with themselves in their head.
For example, let’s say that your reader is having a problem with content ideas for their blog. What would the conversation they are having with themselves in their head sound like? Probably something along these lines:
- “How am I going to come up with ideas for my blog posts next week?”
- “Where can I find great content ideas on (topic)?”
- “Is there an app or a program to help me generate content ideas?”
- “I need to know more about (topic), who’s the expert in this field?”
- “WHY AM I HAVING SO MUCH TROUBLE COMING UP WITH CONTENT IDEAS?!” 😉
The key to writing in your reader’s language, is to put yourself in their place and address/answer their questions in your copy that they are asking themselves. Always know as much as humanly possible about your reader before you begin to write a single word.
2. People Respond to Stories – Pause for a moment. Think of how many stories that can you remember that you’ve either read, had read to you, or heard in your lifetime. Probably too many to list, right?
Why is this?
People respond to stories because the human brain is ‘hardwired’ to remember them. I’m not sure if this is because years ago, before writing came on the scene, people passed down their history of events verbally from one generation to the next or what.
What I do know, however, is that I can remember stories all the way back to my childhood. I’m sure that you can too!
Why is this important?
The reason this is important is because when you understand what type of story generates what type of emotion, and what type of action, then you can tell (write) a story that connects you to your reader. Storytelling is perhaps one of the best kept copywriting secrets that you can use to get the re/action you want from your reader.
[clickToTweet tweet=”Decide the effect you want to produce in your reader – Robert Collier” quote=”Decide the effect you want to produce in your reader – Robert Collier”]
3. Always Include a Question That Your Reader Must Answer With a ‘Yes’ – Getting your reader to say ‘yes’ often works to get your reader to agree with you throughout the rest of your copy. Later, when it comes time for your reader to take the action that you want them to take, you increase your chances of getting them to say ‘yes’ again.
Stop. I want you to do both of us a BIG favor…
Never use this information as a means to manipulate people into buying sub-standard products and services that do not deliver the results that your readers are seeking.
When unethical or sneaky copywriters rip-off people with great copy that promotes a sub-standard product, all they accomplish is giving the rest of us and our profession a bad name.
If you’re not going to write copy for its intended purposes – to solve people’s problems or relieve pain and suffering with products and services that do just that – then don’t bother writing copy at all, please.
4. Use Personal Experience to Build Relationships With Your Readers – Building relationships with your reader’s used to be a matter of common sense, then someone came along and gave it a fancy name: “Empathy Marketing”
Empathy Marketing is defined as: “The action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another of either the past or present without having the feelings, thoughts, and experience fully communicated in an objectively explicit manner; also: the capacity for this.”
As I stated, being understanding, sensitive to, and experiencing the pain of others used to be common sense. Unfortunately, common sense seems to be rather uncommon nowadays (end of rant)…
However, if you do posses sincere empathy for others, this puts you ahead of the game when it comes to writing copy that attracts your ideal readers and customers.
This is also reason why sharing your personal history or experiences with a product (good and bad) in your copy helps to establish a relationship with your readers: They will begin to trust you and look to you for sound advice and…products!
5. Write Your Copy in a Conversational Tone – Think of your sales copy as if you were having a conversation between you and friends at a backyard Bar-B-Q, a birthday party, or simply a casual conversation about today’s news among friends. Speak directly to your readers for the individual they are and not as if you’re trying to sell them something.
Always read your sales copy out loud to hear how it sounds. Personally, I like to record myself when I am reading copy aloud – that way I can play it back again and again.
Writing your copy in a conversational tone goes hand-in-hand with writing in your readers language. Not only do you want your copy to join the conversation your reader is having with themselves, you also want it to sound as if they are saying it to themselves. When you master these two copywriting secrets, then you’re well on your way to making great money as a copywriter!
[clickToTweet tweet=”Copy is a direct conversation with the consumer – Shirley Polykoff” quote=”Copy is a direct conversation with the consumer – Shirley Polykoff”]
6. Study Successful Copy – Out of all the copywriting secrets I know, this is perhaps the most important. By studying other great copywriter’s copy you will begin to grasp what good copy should sound like.
To this very day, even after 20+ years in the business, I still read everything I can get my hands on that I know great copywriter’s wrote. Don’t you think that you should too?
When reading great copy, take note (literally, write it down) of key phrases that are used, how the copy makes you feel, and why it makes you want to buy. Compile what you find into a “Swipe File” for future reference and use.
Your swipe file should include:
– Introduction, or lead
– Post Scripts (PS)
– Article Titles
– Blog Post Titles, sub-heads, etc.
– Email Subject Lines
– Newspaper Headlines
Essentially, any form of copy that catches your attention, makes you want to continue reading and that makes you want to buy, put these in your swipe file. Also, be sure you create sub-files for each category (Headlines, sub-heads, bullets, etc) and file them accordingly.
Possessing a good swipe file will save you a lot of time – and time is money, especially when it comes to pumping out high-volumes of top notch content.
A career as a copywriter takes lots of work, but the rewards are definitely worth it. Boredom is never a concern, and there are plenty of opportunities – especially if you are a good at writing copy that sells.
The Internet has created more opportunities then ever before for good copywriters, whether you are looking for employment with a company or as an entrepreneur. And if you work for yourself, you are not bound by location.
Whether you live in the mountains, near the beach or in a penthouse, so long as you can connect to the Internet you can work anywhere.
These copywriting secrets will make you a better copywriter – so long as you learn them well and take them to heart each time you write. And always remember this: Never, ever, use this knowledge to manipulate people into buying a sub-standard product or service that doesn’t deliver the results your readers are seeking.
What copywriting secrets do you use on a daily basis?
Until next time,
PS: Thank you for commenting and sharing this post!