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3 Beginner Tips for New Copywriters

New to copywriting? Wondering how to craft a clear and compelling copy that sells? You’re not alone.

Whether your goal is to make people buy your product, inquire about your services, follow you on social media, or join your email list, here are 3 powerful tips passed down from expert copywriters themselves.

1. Create a Winning Headline

“If the headline is poor, the copy will not be read. And copy that is not read does not sell goods.”

– John Caples

Chances are, if you lose a prospect at the headline, you may never see them again. Every four out of five readers will only read the headline and skip the rest of the ad.

This is why master copywriters like Eugene Schwartz spent about half of their time perfecting the headline.

A great headline should not only grab the reader’s attention, but also communicate the full message of the body of the text – enticing them to read on. They offer a reward or benefit for the reader in exchange for their time spent reading.

In The Copywriter’s Handbook, copywriter Bob Bly discusses eight types of headlines. You could consider using one of them in your own copy.

  1. The Direct Headlines – You can go straight to the heart of the matter, stating the selling preposition directly. E.g., Pure Silk Blouses – 30 Percent Off
  2. The Indirect Headline – You can pique the curiosity of the reader with a vague headline that could have multiple meanings. E.g., Fresh Bait Works Best
  3. The News Headline – You can use a compelling newsflash that indicates freshness, or the most recent developments. E.g., Introducing Flickr 2.0
  4. The How-to Headline – Bob Bly claims you can’t go wrong with a How-to headline. E.g., How to Choose the Best First-Date Outfit
  5. The Question Headline – You can introduce a question your audience would love to see answered. E.g., Who Else Wants to Get Rich Online?
  6. The Command Headline – You can choose to be bold and demand an action from the reader with a strong verb. E.g., Put a Tiger in Your Tank
  7. The Reason Why Headline – You can offer a list a solutions, tips or product features and introduce it with a title such as this post.
  8. The Testimonial Headline – You can use social proof in the headline. E.g., This is Stephen King’s Favorite Morning Brew.
2. Storytelling Never Gets Old

“We are, as a species, addicted to story. Even when the body goes to sleep, the mind stays up all night, telling itself stories.”

– Jonathan Gottschall, The Storytelling Animal: How Stories Make Us Human

We all love a good story. It has a unique ability to build connections.

According to science, good stories release Oxytocin; making us feel good by boosting feelings such as trust, compassion, and empathy.

Tap into this power of storytelling with an insightful story backed up by solid data. One of the easiest ways to do this is to introduce case studies in your copy. Tell your client’s stories. Put them in the spotlight. Establish a connection with the audience, and then introduce the problem you helped solve.

Don’t forget to blend in a healthy dose of humor as well! People will rarely forget what made them laugh.

3. Keep it simple

Good copy is clear, concise, simple, and free of jargon. It should get the point across without taxing the brain.

You can also take the liberty to bend the rules of grammar as you see fit. Sentence fragments, one-sentence paragraphs, one-word sentences, beginning with conjunctions and ending in prepositions are all fine – even encouraged to amplify the message of your copy.

Use bullets and numbered lists to make the copy more digestible. Remember, your readers don’t have all day. If your content isn’t worth a skim, most readers won’t bother scrolling through.

Besides, the simpler the content, the better. No one will ever complain that your writing is too easy to understand.

Shafeeka Hafeez

Shafeeka Hafeez grew up escaping into a world of books where she discovered a love for writing and a fascination with trees. When she’s not taking up a new marketing skill, or typing out a blog post, you can find her Googling the best therapy for abandoned cats.

July 7, 2022

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