Posted: Thu 30th Sep 2021
Most small businesses owners know the benefits of using their product or service – yet writing content that sells those benefits is surprisingly difficult.
Does your copy effectively communicate the value you provide to customers? Do you know how to make your audience stop scrolling and take notice?
Learning how to write marketing copy is an invaluable skill because it comes up everywhere. Nail the basics and you’ll improve the conversion rate on your website, the Enterprise Nation platform, social media and more.
In this blog, we’ve highlighted six simple tips for writing attention-grabbing copy that resonates with your audience.
Step one: Focus on the benefit, not the product
We’re all guilty of getting bogged down in what the product is rather than what it does. But the truth is, your customers don’t care about what you sell – they care about what it can do for them.
Think about your audience’s biggest pain points, then outline how your product or service addresses each point. How does it save your customers time or money?
“I start by thinking about my target market and what problems they have. I look back at how previous clients summarised the challenges they were facing so I can use language which will resonate with my target market,” Karen said.
“For my productivity coaching and training business, this was about being overwhelmed, not being able to prioritise and struggling to knuckle down and focus.”
The next step for Karen is to clearly explain how she’ll solve each of these problems. It’s also important to show customers the results they can expect.
“I make sure to highlight the successful outcome I’ll lead my clients to. In my case, that’s thriving at work and building a successful career, as well as having a life outside of it.
“I think the key is to put yourself in your potential customer’s shoes. What’s their life like? What do they need help with? What do they want? Once you’re clear on that, the rest flows quite naturally,” she said.
Step two: Start important headers with verbs
Rather than stating what you do (for example, “Recruitment services” or “Accounting”), get into the habit of starting key headers with a verb. It keeps your copy focused on what customers can expect from the service, not what it is.
Enterprise Nation member Ciara McGovern instantly grabs attention and makes the results clear by opening a Services page with “Attract, retain and motivate with employee benefits packages tailor-made for SMEs”.
That description immediately sells the benefit and helps potential customers self-identify with what they’re offering – it’s tailor-made for them!
Here are some examples of how copy can be updated to get you thinking:
“A seamless social media service for start-ups” to “Get seamless social media support for your start-up”
“The best organic supermarket” to “Order organic food for next day delivery”
“Beautiful holiday cottages to rent” to “Find your perfect holiday cottage to rent”
Step three: Use language that engages the reader
As a small business owner, it’s likely you’ll have pitched your product or service hundreds of times. You’ll know what captures people’s attention and what gets their eyes wandering elsewhere.
Think about how you’d address your customers if you were selling your service face-to-face. What words would you use? What benefit would you lead with? Use that experience to make sure your online content resonates.
“My approach is to think about one person and imagine that I am speaking to that individual. I really consider what they would be thinking about and the problem that they are facing,” she said.
“I also try to write how I speak, as I find that means it comes across as more natural. Hopefully my personality shines through a bit which I think is important to people.”
Step four: Make your content accessible
Your language and tone of voice are particularly crucial if you work in sectors like finance or accounting that are prone to jargon. Consider the level of understanding your audience is likely to have and write in a way that’s accessible to them.
Finance trainer Martin Mellor uses his Enterprise Nation profile page to communicate what he does in a clear, conversational tone of voice:
“Let's face it, not many people start a business because they love managing the finances and it can be a real headache and cause of stress for many.
“I am a commercially focused Finance Director and Finance Trainer. In short, that means that I help businesses and business people to be more confident with and have a greater understanding of financial information.”
Step five: Recognise customer objections
Customer objections are doubts that come up when you’re buying something and can have a huge impact on a website’s conversion rate (the share of visitors that make a purchase).
If left unanswered, these objections might deter a customer from buying something: the cost of shipping, the quality of the product, the time it takes to arrive etc. Addressing them in your copy helps to alleviate any concerns and remove the barrier.
A good structure for addressing objections is something like: “I know what you’re thinking… but…”.
Let’s say you run a personalised birthday card company. You know a common objection is around shipping – your customers are concerned the card won’t arrive on time.
You could handle this objection by including something like this on your product page:
“I know what you’re thinking: what if my all-important birthday card doesn’t arrive on time? Don’t worry – we post all cards within 24 hours of purchase so they will arrive within three days. In fact, we’re so confident that your card will arrive on time that we’ll give you a full refund if it doesn’t.”
Step six: Inspire FOMO (Fear of Missing Out)
When you’re talking about your product or service, make customers feel like everyone else is using it and they’re missing out.
You’ll often see pop-ups on ecommerce sites that announce how many people have viewed an item or bought it. Including numbers in your copy is equally persuasive (and less irritating!):
Over 5,000 products sold
6,650 fans getting insights in their inbox
800 free trials started