5 Tips for Writing Good Copy

by | Oct 2, 2009 | Marketing & Selling

Copywriting skills are probably the most important skills for an entrepreneur to have. Even if don’t write your own copy, you do need to recognize it when you see it. So, boning up on your copywriting is a very good idea.

Know Your Subject
Don’t bluff your way through a blog post or sales letter. If you don’t know what you’re talking about, it will show through. Now that doesn’t mean you need to be an expert on the subject or even that you have all the knowledge in your head. You can do research and sum up what you find. Just don’t make it up as you go.

Understand Your Audience
You have to know who you are writing for so that you can communicate effectively with them. This is true in all types of writing, from fiction to blog posts to sales copy. When you speak your target audience’s language, they will be more likely to listen.

Be Aware of Good Grammar
Do your best to week out misspellings, typos and mis-congugated verbs. I know that I’ve missed a mistake or two — dyslexia makes this a challenge for me — but for the most part my copy is clean. When you make to many glaring mistakes, it can undermine your message and the authority from which you communicate it.

Use Headlines Effectively
Headlines serve several purposes: they introduce what you’ll be talking about next, they summarize the content of your message (important for reaching scanners), and they break up the copy into manageable bits (critical for reading on the Web). Don’t get too caught up in being clever and cutesy — your headlines need to communicate your message just as effectively as the rest of your copy.

Remember, there will always be a segment of your audience who will not read every word. These scanners will just skim through your content, reading the headlines looking for the larger meaning, reading your copy only when a headline intrigues them. I know because I’m a scanner, too. *smile*

Be Conversational
For most business purposes, conversational copy is more effective. Write like you would talk to a friend about the subject (except leave out the ums, ahs and waving hands). Avoid being too jargony … unless that is what your audience needs.

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