No matter what we’re reading or viewing for business today--a website, blog, video, or a LinkedIn or Instagram post--we want to be engaged. Yes, give me the information, but please make it interesting too.
In turn, when we’re presenting information to customers, members, students, or any audience, always think about the information from their point of view. What do they need to know? How do I make it relate to them and them to it? How can I keep them involved so they recall what they need?
Here’s the thing to remember: Your customers are just like you. They want the information you’re providing. But what they really want is to make a decision.
I write for a living. What that really means is that I read much more than I write. I spend hours daily reviewing websites, emails, blogs, posts, and online documents. And I attend talks and workshops given by renowned copywriters as well as read their books, newsletters, and posts.
All professional copywriters pursue improving our writing to capture readers' attention, persuade, convert, sell. It’s all part of the game in understanding what grabs them and gets the job done. And I’ve got to say, reading someone else’s writing can be a delight. But sometimes, it isn’t. Not to imply that the information isn’t there. Not that the site doesn’t tell me what I may need to know. It just depends on how the facts and persuasion are served up.
The alchemy of content and writing style, or what I privately think of as “word woo-woo,” can trip up anyone, including business owners and company insiders. These product experts—so fierce in their knowledge—can’t always explain in fresh words and concepts how their products will perfectly nestle in the customer’s world. In fact, experts can often overly complicate and overly assume.
Here’s the thing to remember: Your customers are just like you. They want the information you’re providing. But what they really want is to make a decision. So, let’s not bore them or forget to give them what they need. If you can, add some zing, a verbal shimmy, an example that brings it to life. Keep your sentences clear so your readers can remember what they need. Last, present the information with lists, bullets, call outs, subheads. Make it easy to digest.
Take a look at this example, an offer, first presented simply and then re-written by a copywriter:
Standard offer Under the guidance of zoologist Dr. Lonnie Van Struble, our company provides chinchilla products and services for the at-home habitat. Click here.
> This general teaser is to the point. The reader must click to know the details of the offer. Straightforward, no emotional appeal.
Designing your sustainable chinchilla villa is easy with our special video featuring small-mammal zoologist Dr. Lonnie Van Struble. Order now and we’ll include all you need to enjoy and learn first-hand about having affectionate chinchillas in your home:
· A starter habitat for all your new pet needs: the Chilla-Villa, a secure structure with food tray and water bottle, a playtime block and branch for climbing, and an exercise wheel.
· A complimentary link to the San Diego Zoo’s Chinchilla’s Gone Wild land-cam.
· An invitation to our limited-seating virtual seminar on chinchilla care, Chinchillas: Small Paws, Huge Hearts.
You and your family will get an unfiltered, close up peek at bringing chinchillas right into your heart and home!
> This offer has add-on bonuses, lets you know the features of the villa, and describes the joy of bringing chinchillas into your home.
So which offer would you select?
Key take-away: Hiring a professional writer for your website, blog, print and other marketing will get you where you’re trying to go quicker. A strong writer will be sure you connect with your customer and provide the information he or she needs to take the next step. And the writing will be in your brand voice, an association that builds positive vibes in your customer’s head along with your product name and logo. Go pro!