Words Matter: Why Copywriting is Not Something to Skimp On

It’s time to design some marketing materials for a construction and renovation business. This time, the business owner is going all out. He wants a marketing campaign that will knock the socks off the competition and show prospective customers why they should choose his business over others.

When it’s time to write copy for the flyers, ads, and social media posts that will be attached to this new campaign, the business owner has trouble mincing his words. There is so much valuable information that customers need to know about! It’s hard to decide what to cut out.

So he chooses not to cut anything out.

What’s the end result? The business owner has flyers and posts full of text and a poorly written copy. It’s an overload of information, with no clear resolution or calls to action asking customers to make an appointment or book an estimate.

Marketing involves skillful observation of what customers need and want and creating engaging relationships with businesses based on those observations. This also includes the valuable skill of copywriting, which can make or break the success of a business’ marketing objectives and strategy.

What’s involved in quality copywriting? Several elements are required, so let’s break them down.

Write Tight — It’s a Must

Somewhere in a stuffy classroom on a college campus, a professor is lecturing his Introduction to Marketing class about the importance of clear, concise writing. “Write tight,” he will admonish.

The concept here is to use as few words as possible to get the point across. Why so? Think of two things: the average attention span of a casual passerby and the size of the space on which the words are displayed.

Now, the majority of consumers take in many ads and marketing campaigns on their mobile devices. This decreases the amount of space marketers have to work with, even in today’s age of large phone screens.

So practice taking out as many “filler” words as possible. Is there a point to make that takes four sentences to convey? Try to cut that in half. Practice makes perfect!

Always Have a Call to Action

It’s easy to think that the copy should be persuasive enough to prompt customers to take the next steps and make a purchase or book an appointment. But if the words nevertell the customer to take that action, they often fall flat.

It seems like it should be obvious, right? Not always. This is why a clear copy should always have some sort of call to action. This could be as simple as prompting the customer to read another article, sign up for an email list, or take a survey.

When writing copy, ask yourself if you would purchase something based on it. Is it persuasive, engaging, and to the point? Does it ask the reader to take an action? Does it take up too much space and take too long to read?

This audit of the copy that is produced for marketing materials (and, really, any sort of materials associated with the business such as websites and brochures) should be done regularly.

Ronn Torossian is CEO & Founder of 5WPR & one of America’s most notable PR executives. He is the Author of best-selling PR book, “For Immediate Release.“

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