Marketing and copywriting are part of the same process. Typically the marketing brief defines the core messages and after this the copywriting process focuses on wordsmithing.
However, most businesses do not employ a professional copywriter so the two activities go together. This is not a problem once you take time to think about what is going into the piece before the writing process begins.
Here are some marketing tips to develop your copywriting brief:
- Jump straight in on a persuasive, clearly-defined benefit. Make sure “it does what it says on the tin”. Use descriptive language economically by prioritising strong, descriptive verbs in favour of adverbs.
- The classic marketing approach is to create a need – and have the product fulfill that need. Unlike the Dettol no-touch handwash, make sure the need is legitimate. Customers are intelligent.
- If there is a USP already defined on your company website, focus in on this. Easy!
- Nutribullet does this brilliantly. Associate the product with an idea or emotion. Strange how we feel healthier after watching those infomercials. The feeling of being healthy becomes the goal. It can also work in reverse, when the product aims to solve a problem and provide relief to a negative feeling. Senokot’s happy morning after shot shows how this is done.
- Show how popular the product is and quantify this with numbers. No!No! use millions of customers as their core message. It shows the product is mainstream. Updating the number of customers regularly shows a consistent pattern of success, and therefore evidence of value to the customer.
- Use a case study or testimonial: A really good B2B case study quantifies the value of the product or solution to the end customer in a tangible form. This could be revenue, ratings, inbound links or customer service KPIs. The important thing is that it is measurable and easy to reference back to the product or solution. Potential customers are also interested in installation details, lead time, pricing and the overall professionalism when they are assessing value for money.
- Endorse the product with a well-respected, relevant personality. This does not need to be a TV personality. It may be worth checking with your industry association to see who might be available to fill that role. Bring it into the discussion if you are considering an event sponsorship deal. Allow the person testing your services to share their experience in their own words, and always get permission before quoting them.
- Create a “pen picture”. This involves creating characters who have a scenario where the product can benefit them greatly. This process helps to pin down a complex message and it’s particularly useful in explainer videos.
- Compare your product to the competition. In simple terms, show how your product or service outperforms the competition in terms of value. Use percentages to quantify this. The telecoms and energy sectors do this very well. Find an example you like.
- New product/feature announcement. Early innovators itch to handle new launches first. Speak directly to them – they are influencers. Allow their word of mouth, social media and blog posts to diffuse and amplify your message.
- Highlight a Guarantee. Guarantees build trust. There have been many business books written about the speed of trust. A sincere guarantee can remove inertia and mobilise a customer to take out their wallet.
- Show a strong offer with the price, a product image or images and where to buy. Don’t leave the customer in the dark. If the offer is compelling, don’t direct the customer to a list of distributors. Geotarget your message to make their journey as short as possible.
- Use the word Free in your content. This may involve highlighting special features and characteristics of your after sales process. Littlewood’s USP is Free Shipping. You get the total price upfront with no extra research needed. It sounds appealing and it saves the user time.
You can view an example of my copywriting in this case study.
If you would like to read examples of my copywriting, please get in touch.