Content marketing has replaced traditional forms of marketing such as print and TV ads. What you write and how you write it will have a direct impact on your bottom line.
Copy that is not honest, poorly written, or confusing will drive your website visitors away from your site before they even get a chance to see what you are offering.
Businesses need to develop consistent and strategic content marketing initiatives that provide helpful, relevant, and valuable information to their target market.
Writing good web copy is an art form with multiple purposes. Content on your site conveys information about your products and services.
Off your site, you can use press releases, social media, advertising and other methods to increase your traffic and sales. The more persuasive your web copy, the higher your conversion rates.
Speak to Your Potential Customers
It is important to remember who you are writing for and be sure your language and content is something your ideal customer can understand and appreciate.
The best way to do this is to put yourself in their shoes and write your copy from their perspective. Read what you write out loud because it sounds different than when you read it in your head. You will also be better able to find grammatical errors and spot typos.
Before you start writing, decide what the purpose is for your content and if it is addressing the pain points of your target audience. Make sure it looks good on all devices before you publish.
Don’t be tempted to use lofty or academic language to make yourself sound well-educated and smart. This could backfire on you. If you speak to your potential customers using ordinary and everyday language, they will be better able to relate to your business and brand.
The stronger the connection your audience feels with you, the easier it is to build a relationship, and the more likely they will become paying customers.
People like to do business with people they know, like, and trust. Use your content writing as a means to this end.
Why is Content Marketing Important?
To understand why the content you write is vital to your success as a business, think about the four steps of a typical buying cycle:
Content marketing, if done well and correctly, will raise the awareness of how your business offerings are the solution your target market needs.
It will also educate your potential customers about your product or service that they might not have known before coming across your content.
How can you make sure they find your content? This is where search engine optimisation (SEO) comes into play.
Start with Keyword Research
One critical factor in writing your copy is Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Keywords and keyword phrases are the terms used in search queries.
Google uses those terms and matches them with the sites that have the most relevant and highest quality content. If your copy does not include these terms, you will not get ranked in the search engines or get found by your potential customers.
SEO keyword research will let you know what topics both your audience and Google find to be relevant. You can also find out information about your competitor’s content strategy and compare it against your own. The results you get from your research will allow you to optimise your content to drive more traffic to your site.
Write Compelling Headlines
As important as your content is to the success of your business, the headlines you use in your copy are even more critical.
Why is that? Well, you only have a few seconds to grab your reader’s attention while they decide if they should hang around and read more. Use that time wisely by writing compelling, creative, credible, clear, concise, persuasive, and engaging headlines.
Alex Taylor of Gorilla360, an SEO agency in Sydney, Australia calls this “Headline Deadline”. Your headline or title is the introduction of your content to your readers.
Make sure it includes the keywords or phrases your research identifies. You also want it to be benefit-driven to compel visitors to read the rest of your content.
The Secret Formula
Copyblogger, a company that teaches people how to write valuable content to attract attention and drive traffic, suggests a simple formula.
All of the copy you write should answer the following questions for your readers:
- What are you offering?
- How will it benefit them?
- Who are you?
- What are their next steps?
The first step involves letting the reader know in a few seconds whether or not the topic you are writing about is of interest to them.
You can’t persuade someone to keep reading your content and take action if what you are writing about is not immediately apparent and concise.
The answer to question 2 clearly lays out the benefits reading the content will provide. Many people confuse features and benefits. The features are about you and the benefits are about your potential customers. They care more about what’s in it for them.
When writing your copy, be sure to include how their life will be more comfortable or better with your product or service.
After you clearly describe the benefits, you can go back and talk a little more about the features. By this time, either your content has already hit a sweet spot with the reader, or they have moved on because they are not interested.
Using bullet points is always helpful in that it makes your content easier to read. Don’t forget about your headlines and subheadlines. Each one will trigger a response to either keep on reading or leave.
Depending upon your influence in your industry, you may or may not have to spend much time writing about who you are. If you have already established yourself as trustworthy and knowledgeable, your readers already know and trust you.
You can include a photo of yourself and a brief description in the bio section of your content. This section can also include a link to a source where the reader can find out more about you.
The last question refers to what is commonly known as the call-to-action. If you don’t let your readers know exactly what you want them to do next, they won’t do it.
Writing good persuasive copy for your business requires careful planning, a goal, and a strategy. Don’t forget to always keep in mind the needs of the audience your content is targeting. Use relevant data to back up any claims you make and remember to use language that resonates with your potential customers.
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