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Thread: Advice for Writing My Copy

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    Default Advice for Writing My Copy

    I am looking for advice on how to write copy geared toward small business owners. I am starting a company that does web design for local businesses. What are some things that you like to hear in copy? What are some things that you run from?

    Thanks,
    Kaloeb
    Last edited by webdesigngeek; 05-06-2015 at 08:49 PM.

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    There really is no set thing. Basically, you have to get into the mind of your target client and make them say "yes, this is what I was looking for" when they come to your site / read your brochure, etc. Make it about them and their needs, not you.

    I can tell you right away that if you want to do this for local businesses, make that an angle. You're for businesses that want to see their web designer in person. There is a market for that.

    Your writing also has to be interesting and engaging - people must want to read it, and keep reading. This is a big deal that many people miss. This isn't a school project - nobody has to read it - they must want to.

    Hope the above helps.
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    Quote Originally Posted by webdesigngeek View Post
    I am looking for advice on how to write copy geared toward small business owners. I am starting a company that does web design for local businesses. What are some things that you like to hear in copy? What are some things that you run from?
    What copywriting books have you read so far??
    David Hunter | Duke of Marketing | Retired Real Estate Agent
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    I was thinking along the same lines as Dan. There are guidelines you can apply to all of your copywriting, but there's not one way to write copy that will sell to your potential customers. Your first step is to understand who your potential customers are so you can target copy to them.

    I'd also advise reading at least one book about copywriting and find some sites online that talk about it regularly. You aren't going to write great copy just because you have a few tips. I fully believe you can learn how to write better copy, but it will take serious effort and time on your part to improve it. If you aren't willing to put in the time or effort, then I would suggest hiring someone to write the copy for you.
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    To be honest, the copy is directly affected by where you're going to use it. For example blogs, web copy, email marketing, social media and sales copy can all be considered as valid pieces of writing and are all very different beasts.

    My advice is to begin with getting your message straight in your mind. After this you can start thinking about the platform you are using to convey your message. Blogs, for example, can be a little more playful, perhaps open with a joke and let it flow from there.

    Whatever you have written, absolutely, 100% read it from top to bottom, multiple times. Imagine that you are your target audience... would you keep reading?

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    I agree with Dan. You have to get into the head of the client and give their needs/concerns as much attention on your site as you do your company's abilities. It's all about showing how your company is the best to meet their needs. Perhaps joining a Meetup group or other in-person gathering of local small business owners might help you to judge just what those needs are?
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    For whatever this may be worth; as a non-web savvy client I want to believe that the designer has some understanding of the specific business. I'd pitch your "experience" working with different types of business, rather than the techy side. I'd sell what the web site can do for the business, not what you can do for the website. Just my opinion of course.

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    I think everyone is thinking along the same lines here. I think the most important thing when it comes to writing effective copy, is to maintain consistency through all of your online channels. For example, if you are a wedding planner and your ideal clients are conservative, reserved, wealthy couples, over the age of 40, its important to speak to them in the language that would appeal to them. Not only on your website, but your social media channels need to convey the same message. Your website copy should always express how you relate to them and understand them, understand their frustrations, and positioning your services as the solution- how can you make their lives easier? and why should they hire you and not anyone else? this is why niche research is so important and really, really getting to understand your ideal client, the way they think, the questions they are asking, their needs etc is key! hope that helps

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul View Post
    I'd pitch your "experience" working with different types of business, rather than the techy side. I'd sell what the web site can do for the business, not what you can do for the website.
    I think you need both (not necessarily on the same page, though). Yes, pitch what the web site can do for the business (definitely), but there will also be some savvy prospective clients out there who will want to know what you can do for the website as well.

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    You have some excellent guidelines above, so much so that I can only think of one thing to add right now.

    After you have applied all the advice here, get yourself into an objective mode as best you can. By objective I mean you need to detach yourself and pretend you are the prospective client. Now from that state of mind ask yourself one simple question: Why should I care?

    Does your copy compel the reader to care? If it passes that test, you've done well.
    Steve Chittenden

    Web design, graphic design, professional writing, and marketing.

    "Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat." -- Theodore Roosevelt

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