Defining advertising copy
Text of a print, radio, or television advertising message that aims at catching and holding the interest of the prospective buyer, and at persuading him or her to make a purchase all within a few short seconds. The headline of an advertising copy is said to be the most important part, and quite often a small change in its wording brings disproportionate results. Although a short advertising copy is more common in consumer-product advertising, according to the UK advertising guru David Ogilvy (1911-1999) people do read (and listen or attend to) lengthy advertisements if they are skillfully written. Most advertising copy is based on ...view middle of the document...
Think Google Analytics.
That copy isn’t going to win any literary awards, but it will get the job done. It will give a prospect the information she needs to make an informed decision about the product.
2. Storytelling copy
Everyone loves a good story.
We like hearing about people — especially interesting people. People who’ve suffered challenges we can relate to, and can tell us how they overcame those challenges.
And the moral of the story, coincidentally, is that your product was the catalyst to overcoming those odds.
You might find this storytelling technique in an email series, a landing page, or a short video. Whatever the format, you’ll get four basic traits in the story:
1. Opening: Introduce the pain. Show how the character of the story had a normal life, then how that life was shattered by a change of events.
2. Conflict: How is the life of the main character threatened if he or she does not respond to the problem? What does her journey look like as she tackles this challenge?
3. Dialogue: People are drawn to conversations in a story. It’s human interest at its root: two people talking to each other. We are also drawn to dialogue because it’s easy to read. “Our eyes flow over dialogue like butter on the hood of a hot car,” says novelist Chuck Wendig.
4. Solution: Finally, your product is introduced as the cure for your character’s problem. You increase the credibility of your product by sharing specific results (347% increase in conversion, for example).
Your story doesn’t have to be dramatic. It just has to be interesting to your target audience. And this is where good research comes in.
3. Conversational copy
John Caples calls conversational copy “You and Me.”
In this style of copy, you write as if there is a conversation between two people: the copywriter and the prospect.
The language here would be no different than a salesman sitting down for lunch with a customer and talking through a sales presentation. It’s a straightforward approach that tries to identify with the reader:
I know how you feel. I felt the same way. That all changed when I found x, y and z.
Keep in mind that you don’t have to be a polished copywriter to createeffective conversational copy. Often the sheer passion for what you’re trying to promote breathes off the page.
In fact, you can record a conversation about the product, transcribe that conversation, and use it as a rough draft.
4. John Lennon copy
When John Lennon asked us to imagine there was no heaven or hell, no countries, religion or war, he was using an effective tool of persuasion: imaginative copy.
As an advertiser, you can ask your target audience to imagine a painless way to lose weight, or what it would feel like to be a successful travel writer.
Imaginative copy typically begins with words like “imagine,” “close your eyes,” “pretend for a moment,” “discover,” or “picture this” in the first paragraph of the text.
This is the concept behind AWAI’s Barefoot Writer presentation....