Is it even remotely possible to write sales copy that converts (emails, landing pages, ads) if you’re not a copywriter?
I say yes. I explain the gist of it in a recent episode at When It Worked, a podcast hosted by Julian Leahy.
You might not be a wordsmith like David Ogilvy, and you might have no idea what effective ad copy looks like, or what your conversion rates are, but you can still write copy that sells.
Here are some of the highlights in this episode:
There are many things that are important in your company’s marketing plan. But copywriting is one of those things that can make or break your growth efforts.
Sales copy is something that many businesses ignore or postpone for later: when they’ll have the time or marketing budget.
In my experience, the earlier you get it done, the easier it’s going to be to scale.
Know these things and you’ll write better copy for your company
Know everything there is to know about your prospects & customers
Your success relies on you having an accurate profile of who is your ideal customer. Without it, everything in your marketing becomes a struggle.
A lot of people think a customer avatar or an ideal buyer is just a profile with a picture, a name, some demographics and one or two descriptive sentences.
Having that is fine, but it’s just the tip of the iceberg. It is essential that you know everything there is about your target audience. Here are some of the things you should research:
their biggest problem(s) that you can help them with
what keeps them up at night (fears, pain points, frustrations, desires, even lifestyle)
what’s their decision making process and what motivates them
what are their objections to the solution you promise
what are their false beliefs, personal limitations, how do they see the world
Get all of that and you’ll have a great example of what your customer looks like and how you can position your brand and solution in their lives.
Customer language makes writing copy easier
And when doing this research, you’ll also get something called “customer language” which you can use to write copy: anything from your sales copy (emails, sales pages) to a blog post, social media updates or your website SEO.
Language is very important because it makes your copy relevant and authentic. Never assume about how your prospects describe their problem. Research those words and use them in your copy.
Ask your customers for testimonials. Interview them whenever you can. That’s how you’re going to get the best kind of copy.
You are writing for potential customers and they have questions
This is maybe one of the most common questions I get from business owners when it comes to writing copy for sales pages:
“But aren’t people sick of reading long form content online? I hear the attention span of an internet user is shorter than a goldfish”
Yes, most people will scan when they visit a web page. But can you guess what they’re scanning for?
It’s answers to the questions aka objections they might have.
And if your sales copy does not address the conversation going in your prospect’s mind, you might have lost a sale. Because if you don’t answer the question, they’ll answer it themselves and make a decision based on lack of information.
Your sales copy should inform, educate and help the reader to find answers.
Which leads to this:
Not everyone will be ready to buy, and that’s fine
If you want to write copy that sells then you need to understand buyer awareness.
Your buyer is typically in one of 4 stages:
Unaware – They are not even thinking about your product, or the problem that your product is trying to solve.
Problem Aware – The buyer is aware that they have a problem, but they do not even know that solutions exist to solve that problem.
Solution Aware – The buyer is aware that they have a problem, and that there are solutions in the market that can help them solve this problem.
You Aware – The buyer is aware that they have a problem, that there are solutions in the market, and that YOU are a potential solution for their problem.
Your content marketing, sales copy and overall marketing strategies should focus on moving your buyer through these stages of awareness. It’s an ever-going process.
If your sales copy overpromises, you will underdeliver
Your sales copy should talk about benefits, transformations instead of features.
But a lot of marketers focus on surreal or very vague transformations that are making it very difficult for readers to actually believe it’s the right solution for them.
So instead of putting the focus on benefits/transformations that only 1% of your buyers would be able to achieve in very specific conditions (think commitment, time, effort etc), lead with something I call:
The minimum viable benefit/transformation with the minimum commitment, time and effort.
There’s no guesswork involved in copywriting
The reason most business owners hate the idea of writing their copy is because there are so many unknowns. They worry more about the design of a sales page than the actual words.
You can write better copy if you know all of the things mentioned above and you have a formula.
The formula or template breaks down the unknown of “what should I write here” or “how do I make this make sense”.
And there are formulas for everything from writing your unique selling proposition to bullet points, product benefits, your call to action etc.
You can write compelling headlines if you know your product’s benefits, transformation and you have good customer language.
You can write great subject lines if you know how your customers talk about their problems, what are their objections and so on.
Personally I use Perry Belcher’s 21-step sales page template with some tweaks here and there. It works great for infoproducts like ebooks, online courses, white papers or services, like coaching and consulting.
I break it down element by element in this podcast episode.
Want to learn more about writing sales copy?
If you want to learn more about writing sales copy, developing buyer personas and using email marketing, here’s what you can read next:
About the Author
Monica Badiu is an email copywriter and copy coach. She specializes in sales copywriting for online course creators who want to send emails that speak to their ideal customer and generate conversions without using fearmongering or pressure. She’s made clients over $3 million in 2023.