“The language of friendships is not words but meanings” (Thoreau)

If you’re launching a product or service think about the terminology and copy that you’re using in your marketing. Words have meanings and there are cultural meanings associated with words. Be careful not to offend your target audience by using words that have a different meaning to them! In addition, make sure you have simple, straightforward and compelling copy that is aligned to your brand values.

Tips for writing good copy:

– Sell The Benefits

What makes you stand out from the competition? Is it ease of use, hassle free set up, smaller sizes available, a better way of working perhaps? Make sure you inform your reader of what the benefits are to them.

– Who are you talking to?

It is a sensible idea to consider your ideal customer and then write your copy based on them. Consider your tone of voice (informal, chatty, formal etc). Also think about your customer’s age, background, income and other socio-demographic factors. If you consider who you are talking to before writing copy, you can achieve copy that will convince your customers to engage with your brand. What are their interests, where do they hang out? Who influences them? Remember to think about your customer traits and factors that will have relevance to your writing style.

Copy written for young people or copy written for people working in the entertainment industry (as examples) is unlikely to have the same tone as copy written for the Corporate sector!

– What ‘Person’ Are You Speaking In?

Is it first, second or third person? Remember to remain consistent across your communication. Make it personal, speak to your customer. Make them feel like you are talking to them directly if you want to make most impact.What character is your brand speaking in? Consider what tense you’re speaking in also. And remember to use Plain English

– What are the main benefits?

Explain the value that your potential customer will receive or why they will benefit from engaging with your brand. Some people use the term ‘Pain Points’ (what might make a consumer uncomfortable) – consider how you can alleviate their problems with your product or service. For example, will you make their life simpler, make their tasks quicker or allow them more time with their family? Once you know what their pain points are, use your solutions to their pain points in your copy. You can always apply variants to different styles of copy or split test and see what works.

Keep Your Copy Simple And Jargon Free

Use as little jargon as possible – there are a number of Jargon Buster tools. Straightforward copy usually gets more attention. Assume that your reader does not know what your acronyms and jargon stand for. Break it down for them! Spell out any acronyms when they appear (in the first instance of your document or promotional material) and include the acronym immediately after. More advice is available online and some tips are here. Always remember to KISS: Keep It Simple Sillybilly! Check out the National Adult Literacy Agency (NALA) tips on writing.

– Remember what your brand represents

When writing your copy think about your brand mission and values, Ensure that you are writing copy that is representative of what you or your brand stand for.

– Share information, yes, but don’t overdo it

If you overdo your text it will be difficult for people to digest your key messages. I have shamefully had to produce some very cluttered materials for clients who have insisted on including every last detail about their product or service. Only then, to advise them on how to strip it down to make it have more impact. Overdoing text  is not the best way to deliver a useful piece of marketing or communications. The trick is to get down some key points and then refer them somewhere using a call to action.

– Tracking Codes

Some may disagree, but I’m all about Return On Investment (ROI) and campaign measurement, I have to stress that using tracking codes works wonders. This is assuming that once you receive the warm lead or sales enquiry, you have a process in place to ask how someone heard about your event, business, product or service. If you’re using feedback forms or online enquiry forms be sure to include a drop down box or space for the customer to include a Tracking Code (and prompt the customer to quote the Tracking Code when making contact with your company). This will ensure that you capture which tactics are best value and which distribution channels are working well.

– Consider Language and also Faith/Beliefs

Before executing your marketing campaign and key messages make sure you know the cultural meaning behind any words you use! You don’t want to offend your target audience or be misinterpreted.

– Accuracy of Information

Lets talk facts and legalities. Be mindful of using words that over promise and under deliver. For example, free goody bag or No Obligation Quote. Consider that people will hold you and your brand responsible, if you say it is free then make sure they don’t have to spend a penny and ensure you have enough supplies. Similarly, if you say its No Obligation do not make the potential customer feel pressured into speaking to you on a follow up or having an appointment to discuss things in more detail.

– How can they get in touch? 

Remember to provide contact information. And beyond phone and email, you may wish to include your social media channels too – depends on where you are most accessible.

About Vee Roberts:

I am a Strategic Marketing and Events Consultant and the owner of Insight2Marketing. I plan and deliver robust fully integrated marketing campaigns and events and work with businesses to help them establish solid reputable brands that attract new and loyal customers.

Using effective tactics and marketing strategies, my experience is building brands and delivering strategic campaigns. I have worked across a wide range of sectors including Commercial, Charities, Healthcare, Entertainment, Fashion, Hair & Beauty, Education and Tourism – consulting on a local, regional and international level. Many of the businesses I have worked with have seen a drastic improvement in their bottom line and reported improved perception, better awareness of their brand and an increase in sales and enquiries. Some of these references can be seen here and many more are available on request.

My passion is working with serious business owners who find marketing a chore – imparting my knowledge, experience and advice to ensure that their marketing budget works for them whilst delivering positive outcomes.

 

About the author: Vee Roberts

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Enjoys discussing, planning and implementing fully integrated campaigns using a cross channel approach to deliver positive outcomes
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Proven results through strategic marketing and events. Working across a number of sectors with experience of local, regional and global campaigns. Don’t take our word for it – check out some of the Linked In recommendations: www.linkedin.com/insight2marketing Also on #twitter & Pinterest : @i2marketing

This article was first published by Vee Roberts

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