Copywriters are the backbone of any successful marketing campaign. No matter which tools and techniques you plan to use in your marketing efforts, at some point, you will need help from a copywriter. Want to get more customers from your website? The copy needs to be right. Are you trying to start a social media account? You need a copywriter with good caption-writing skills. Looking to launch an ad campaign? You’ve guessed it, you need an experienced writer by your side.

The internet is a noisy place and millions of blog posts show up on it daily. Because of that, it’s getting harder and harder to compete and rank in search results. That also means you need to keep improving your skills to produce high-quality content. A good copywriter doesn’t just keep the reader on the website. They give them compelling reasons to read through everything on it.

But what does it take to be a good copywriter? How can you go from being an average writer to a great copywriter that stands out from the pack? For starters, you need skills, knowledge, and the ability to follow guidelines. Let’s not forget research skills, good grammar, and a splash of self-confidence. But if I’m being honest, even if you have all that, there are a lot more things you need to pay attention to. Whether you’re new to the business or you already make your living by writing, these tips, in collaboration with an affordable ghostwriting service, will help you step up your game

Know your audience

Know who you’re writing for and focus on them. Sounds like straightforward advice, right? But it’s shocking how many writers misinterpret that. Your audience isn’t the person who gave you the job. It’s the people they are trying to sell to. So, technically, you need to know the audience of your audience.

You can’t start writing until you know which message would work well with the final reader. To figure that out, talk to your employer and find out what their customers care about. This information is crucial in the planning phase. It will ensure that the final audience finds themselves drawn in to read on and see what your copy is offering.

Plan ahead

You have to know what you are going to talk about before you start writing copy. You also have to know what not to talk about. The best way to make sure you don’t get sidetracked while writing is to start with an outline.

My advice is to Google the topic and pay attention to the people also ask section. That will give you subheading ideas you can use in your outline. Once you have it ready, try to be objective and see if it flows well and makes sense. If everything checks out, you can start filling it with text.

Be unique 

Speaking of Google… Don’t write as everyone else does. It’s so easy to research many different articles that, at the end of the day, you don’t know what you came up with and what you remembered from someone else. 

Try to be unique, engaging, and conversational. Personalize each message and don’t overcomplicate. That alone will make all the difference in how the customers perceive your copy. It also brings me to my next point. 

Don’t write things you would never say 

Imagine sitting at a bar or a family dinner. At one point, someone asks you: “Who do you write for again?” or “What do they do?” I am confident you wouldn’t tell them anything an average copywriter would put on the website. Is the first thing that comes to your mind “our mission is to automate the workflow and reduce processes to provide value to our clients”? 

Probably not.
Instead, you would use simple words and, in a couple of sentences, explain the core of their business. Remind yourself of this when you’re writing copy. Read your sentences out loud. If they sound like something you would never say, consider starting over.

Keyword research 

Keyword research is far from the most exciting part of writing copy. Unfortunately, it’s one of the essential ones. Knowing what your targeted audience is typing into Google’s search bar is essential if you want them to actually read what you wrote. Keyword research gives you a view of the entire field. What’s trending in your market? What’s not working? What do I have to write to rank higher? 

We all know it takes more than keyword research to get you on the first page of SERPs (search engine results pages). That’s why your focus should always be on good, informative, and original content. Optimizing it, using keywords, links, etc., should take a close second place, though. 

Create a strong headline 

Give your headline the time it deserves and it will grab the reader’s attention. I’m sure you’ve heard of the 80/20 rule before. It basically tells us that you should spend 80% of your time on the headline and only 20% writing the rest of your copy. I would suggest you first create an in-progress title. Continue writing the rest of the article, then going back and working on the title. 

Consider these tips next time you try to create a strong headline: 

  • Make it clear and concise.
  • Keep it short and to the point.
  • If you have to make it long, that’s ok. Take syllables into consideration, make the words flow and the length won’t matter.
  • Write a few versions and read them out loud. 
  • Avoid using cliches. They are easy for readers to spot, which will make them less likely to read on.

Read. A lot. 

When you read good writing or hear someone speak with excellent style and flow, your brain picks up on it. You remember specific phrases and expand your vocabulary due to someone else’s skillful way of using language. So, the more you read high-quality work by other writers, the better your own will become over time. Don’t limit yourself to reading only books, either. Read blog posts, articles in magazines, newspapers, newsletters, etc.

Consider joining various copywriting social media groups. You will get a lot of valuable tips and read plenty of good content. The idea is to find people who are excellent at what they do so their skills can rub off on yours.

Create a compelling offer

Before you start writing about your product or service, take a second and think about the following sentence:
People don’t want products; they want solutions.
Your goal shouldn’t be to convince them to buy something. It’s to show them you recognized the issues they have. Aim to help resolve their concerns, and finally, get them to take action.

What’s the point of selling someone something if it doesn’t solve their problems? The answer is: there isn’t one. Your offer should give customers a compelling reason why they should buy your product or service now and not later.

Nowadays, everyone talks about highlighting benefits instead of features. Due to that trend, people avoid talking about features even when they should bring them up. And I’m not saying to ignore the benefits. Just that features sometimes also deserve mention. 

Write in the active voice 

If you’re familiar with WordPress, you’re probably familiar with Yoast, as well. And there is nothing that makes that little face go from green to red like a passive voice. 

Now, it’s important to point out that this judgemental face is sometimes wrong. Not wrong in pointing out passive voice, but wrong in understanding the context of it. The reason Yoast points it out is that passive voice sounds too formal and detached. As opposed to that, the active voice sounds engaging and conversational. And while Yoast is correct in pointing that out, there are some occasions where changing passive to active just doesn’t sound right. 

For example, saying this dish is topped with melted cheese sounds way better than the melted cheese tops this dish.
Saying this blog post can be downloaded off my website is better than anyone can download this blog off my website.
Can you notice the difference? The active version is not wrong, but it’s not how you would normally say it. In that case, it defeats the purpose of the conversational text. All in all, my advice is to try and use the active voice but don’t forget to use your common sense as well.

Ask for help or collaborate with others

It may seem counterintuitive, but partnering with other copywriters is not always a bad idea. Mainly because none of us knows it all. You can collaborate with other writers for various reasons. For example, you can find someone who:

  • Mentors you
  • Holds you accountable for your work
  • Proofreads your work
  • Shares a fresh perspective
  • Outsources you their work (and vice versa) when they’re swamped

As I said before, join some local or social media groups, internet communities, or forums. Ask questions when you’re not sure about something and help others who struggle. In the end, we all need to be willing to ask for help and collaborate with others to succeed.

Be humble and accept the feedback

A good copywriter must bring a certain mindset to the table. I’ve often heard writers say they wrote a fantastic article and the customer wasn’t happy. To make sure that doesn’t happen, ask for feedback early on. Write an outline or a rough draft and send it out to your client or superior. Ask them if that’s what they had in mind and adjust to their feedback. 

Don’t fight for every idea you have. Keep in mind that you’re writing this for the customer, not yourself. It’s more important that they’re happy than that you are. If you think something won’t work, or you have a legit reason for standing your ground, by all means, say it to the client. Tell them if you think something won’t perform well and give them an explanation why. But, if they still insist on doing things their way, adjust your sails. 

And finally, accept the fact that not all feedback is a criticism. Instead, look at it as an opportunity to improve your skills. It’s easy for writers to get so buried in their own thoughts that their initial idea gets blurred. Allowing someone else to look at your work will get you a fresh perspective and good out-of-the-box feedback.

Bottomline

If you look closely, there is a common theme between all these tips. They all encourage you to keep it simple, stay true to yourself, and not to be afraid of feedback. In the digital age, copywriting skills are more needed than ever. That also means that the competition is fierce and the bar is set higher every day.

Good copywriters have to grow, learn, and develop to produce content that will continuously impress clients. Sending out poor pitches and lousy sales emails should, by now, be the thing of the past. Is staying on top of copywriting trends something you’re struggling with? Are you looking for new and improved ways to reach out to potential clients?
Get in touch! Our team may have a perfect solution for you.