Effective Copywriting: How to Write a Copy that Sells

Marina Astapchik
IT Trends Research Specialist
July 27, 2011

How to create a valuable copy that sells? The basic objective of any selling copy is to make a reader take action, typically, buy your product or service or rouse reader’s curiosity to learn more about it and contact you.

There are plenty of articles on the web that make sense, but not value. Focused on the benefits of the seller they forget about the benefits of the buyer. It means they do not contain that valuable information that urges the reader to take action.

A quality selling copy makes a difference. Each word and sentence of it from the headline to the end point convinces readers to take action. Let us examine the key steps and tips that will help get a deeper insight in how to write a valuable copy –  the one that sells.

Research your audience

First of all, before getting down to the writing, take time to assess your target audience and identify their needs. This step is a crucial one, because the results you will get greatly depend on how well you can satisfy these needs.

In today’s business environment of high competition, to get a glance at the offerings of your competitors and at how they position their product or service is a highly effective practice. The idea, of course, is not to copy / paste the content and style, but to develop your own, individual vision of your selling copy based on the efficient utilization of the acquired information as regards the strong and the weak points of your competitors’ product positioning.

Identifying and assembling the list of the most valuable benefits of your product and service helps attract and convince the reader to buy it.

Grasp attention

Writing an enticing headline is of utmost importance. It is the headline that catches reader's attention and makes him or her dig deeper for further information. Should the headline fail to catch reader's attention, writing the rest of the article is senseless.

That is why the headline should contain a promise to solve a problem that is important to the reader or, otherwise, provide access to the information he or she is looking for.
Make sure you do not break the promise contained in the headline, and link your reader to the valuable information that really helps. If not, your reader will leave your web site disappointed and might never come back.
Place a short introduction of two or three sentences or a small paragraph below the headline with a short description of the article contents. This helps the reader make sure he found exactly what he was looking for and proceed with reading.

Make it readable

Readability forms a part of the article's value, and it should not be underestimated. Our objective here is to make a reader want to read our copy from the beginning to the end, convince him or her, and urge to take action.

So, make your copy reader-friendly: make sure your sentences are simple and not too long, break your text into readable paragraphs. This will allow the reader to quickly scan them and easily find the information of the utmost importance.
The product and service benefits look better when they are presented in a form of a bulleted list. Make sure that you don't bury them inside or in the end of the text, let them lie on the surface because they can be exactly what readers are searching for.
Don't overload your copy with technical data. If the technical information is valuable and can’t be omitted – put it in the form of a table. You can add value to the technical information by describing how the technical characteristics can help to solve specific problems and how readers can benefit from it.
The power of visibility is immense. If there is a picture that can support your words, or show your product or service to best advantage – put it. Plain text is boring.

Sell it right

What is the winning position to take when writing a selling copy? There are a few rules to keep in mind to sell your product or service right:

Do not try to diminish the qualities and benefits of the competing products or companies. In the end, it is up to the reader to decide which product or service is better.
If you still decide that comparing your product with the competitor's will add value to your selling copy, discuss the product characteristics, not the product itself. The impartial statements always look and feel better rousing credibility to your selling copy.

Each claim that you make about your product and service should be supported by sufficient proof and facts. Statistics or positive customer references will add value trust to your selling copy.
And, finally, make sure your article is up to date: obsolete data reduces both quality and value of the article, since it makes reader seek further in pursuit of more current data. If there is something new and valuable you can tell about your product or service, do not hesitate to expose this benefit – it might be the one that will tip the scale and make reader choose your offering.

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