These copywriting tips for beginners are designed to give a head start to the budding web entrepreneur or freelance writer who is just starting to learn the tricks of the trade.
Copywriting for web sites is something of a different animal from writing copy for the offline world, or other forms of writing such as journalistic reporting and academic studies.
Online copywriting needs to fulfill a very specific purpose: creating an emotional reaction in the reader. This is the most important point to keep in mind as you work through these tips.
Tight writing eliminates unnecessary words. There are obvious benefits to keeping your copywriting as brief as possible:
These are just a few of the reasons it's best to keep your copy brief. On top of that, in many ad-writing situations you only have limited space within which to communicate your message. Google advertising, for instance, only gives you a certain number of characters to craft your ad.
You're probably aware of the distinction between the active and passive voices in writing, but it bears repeating in relation to copywriting. You should strive to craft your copy with plenty of active, strong verbs that create thoughts of action in the reader's mind - and, ideally, eventually lead to action in the form of a purchase.
Remember what I said above about creating emotion in the reader - active language achieves that.
The key to good copywriting, when it comes to talking about a product or service, is to focus on benefits instead of features. What's the difference? Well, a feature is an element of a product itself - for instance, an ABS braking system on a car. The benefit is what your customer actually gets from the feature - in this example, the increased sense of personal and family safety of the braking technology.
Your customers don't care about your products features nearly as much as they care about how it can actually improve their lives - so focus on the benefits.
This is fairly simple: don't talk to highly educated stock market traders the same way you'd talk to, say, beginner guitar players. Different markets, different people, different problems, different copywriting.
Figure out who your target market is and get inside their psychology - this will help you bring out the most important benefits of your product or service to highlight in your copy.
If you've done any formal writing in the past, particularly at a college or university level, much of the imagination has probably been sucked out of your writing style.
You need to inject it back in, because adding creativity and flair to your writing is one of the major ways to incite emotions in the reader.
It's almost impossible to encourage a reader to feel anything by reading what you write when you don't feel anything as you write it. Don't just go through the motions - get outside the box.
These copywriting tips for beginners should be enough to get you started on your path to crafted excellent copy that produces results.
Author: Tom McSherry
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