The Secret to Writing Better Advertising Copy
Whether you are writing an advertisement for Google AdWords or a web page for your company’s flagship service, excellent advertising copy is crucial for success.
Good ad copy is the difference between someone clicking on your ad or passing you by, the difference between a stellar website conversion rate and a dismal bounce rate, the difference between success and failure.
We know how powerful copywriting can create impact, but what criteria makes it good? More importantly, how can we strive to meet these standards in our own ads?
what is great Advertising copy?
Ask a six different copywriters about effective writing techniques and you will get six different answers. Some will tell you perfect grammar and syntax are the keys to great copy. Others will tell you to use an engrossing story, or make sure you are representing your product truthfully.
All of these answers are correct. Your writing needs to be truthful and easily understood – and good storytelling never hurts, of course – but your ad could include all of these attributes and still fail. Why? Because the only good advertising copy is writing that works. It has to win customers, boost conversions, and make money. Good ad copy achieves your goals.
Learning to create ad copy that works
So how do you make sure your ad copy hits the mark? You have to do your homework. There are no pre-defined set of rules that will always lead you to success. Writing that works for one product might not work for a different one. The only way to write better copy is by studying ads that produce the best results.
Look at every ad you can get your hands on in your industry and look at how the experts do it, then compare their work to yours. More than likely, you will identify common attributes in professional copywriting:
Keep it concise – Good writing means using as few words as possible. Look at the ads in your favorite magazines, especially the headlines. You’ll find great examples of how to convey a powerful message in very few words. When you are working on ad copy, keep trimming the fat until nothing is left but words that grab readers by the shirt and pull them in.
Write about the benefits, not the features – When writing about your products ALWAYS focus on what it will do for the customer. Don’t waste space describing features.
Find the emotion – You’ve probably heard this before, but advertising is most effective when it makes people feel something. It doesn’t have to be a heart wrenching ad either, although those are common (grab a box of tissues and watch any TV spot from the ASPCA for a good example). You can also appeal to the reader’s sense of nostalgia, patriotism, pride, and sense of humor. Look for opportunities to trigger emotions, but don’t force it. Authenticity is best in all things, even advertising.
learn from the experts
Track your ads, content pages, and product pages, and you will learn what ad copy works best with your customers. You should also monitor your competitors and see what they are putting out into the world.
Look for ads that sell products or services similar to yours and keep them in a folder. This is called a “swipe file,” something every ad copywriter should have. When you know what types of ad copy resonate with your target audience, you will know how to create better ads for your business.
Whatever you do, don’t copy someone else’s work. Looking at other ads may lead to good ideas, but you still have to find unique ways to market your product or service. Experimentation is key with good copywriting, and as you refine your “brand voice” I think you will find customers will hear you a lot better.