Table Of Contents
- What is Copywriting?
- A Step-by-Step Beginner’s Guide To Effective Copywriting
- 5 Ultimate Copywriting Tips for Beginners
- Key Takeaways
Today, every business needs high-quality, relevant, and engaging content for increasing reach and conversion rates. It is taxing to constantly come up with something that will make customers take action. This is why the demand for content writers and copywriters is at an all-time high.
While copywriting is quite demanding, it is also one of those career options that can be mastered by almost anyone willing to learn. If you want to start your copywriting career or just upskill, we have got the 5 ultimate copywriting tips for beginners that will set you off to the right start.
But, before we dive into that, let us first get a clear and solid understanding of what exactly copywriting is and how to become a copywriter.
What is Copywriting?
Copywriting is often confused with content marketing and content writing. While they share a few nuances, copywriting differs from content marketing. And, for anyone wanting to become a copywriter, it is essential to know what it means.
Copywriting, in simple terms, is writing content to promote and market a particular service, product, or business. The aim is to persuade and influence people to take a specific action like subscribing or buying the product. The copywriter is expected to make a copy, i.e., the content, as persuasive as possible.
A copy can be in written several forms, all aimed at making the customers or stakeholders take a specific action. Some of these forms are,
- Website copy
- White papers
Copywriting consists of a strong call-to-action (CTA) and is persuasive against advertising writing. It is known to be a top-of-the-mind strategy that indulges in soft selling. With the advancement of digital marketing, copywriting has started to lose a little bit of its significance. But, it continues to be integral to businesses looking to increase conversion rates.
A Step-by-Step Beginner’s Guide To Effective Copywriting
Copywriters are needed by all businesses and industries irrespective of their size and sector. This is because copywriting is a form of advertising that is more effective than indirect advertisements and digital marketing.
This is also the reason for the increased demand for copywriters today. Copywriting is a skill that anyone and everyone can master, be it fresh graduates looking out to start their careers or a business person trying to increase his turnover.
If you want to become a copywriter or simply want to learn to Copywrite, we are listing down a step-by-step guide for the same.
1. Read, read, read
Writing and reading go hand in hand. The reason is that when you read, you observe and learn how thoughts, messages, and opinions are conveyed. This helps while writing – primarily because you will know precisely what words fit into a sentence and make it attractive. Reading helps improve language skills, thereby enhancing your interpersonal communication skills.
2. Know your client, their products, and services
When you get a new task, the first thing you should do is an in-depth research. Knowing your client will help you write effective and well-informed copy, given that you will be representing the said client. Get to know their business, their objectives, vision, and mission. Carry out thorough research about the services and products that they offer.
It is also essential that you know about the product or service you have to promote. Try to learn everything about them, their features, benefits, and shortcomings. It will help you pitch the product effectively.
3. Know your target audience
Now that you know about your client and their product or service, it is time to research your target audience. The copy you will create will have to be curated to lure the audience into taking action. Every set of the audience has specific characteristics unique to them.
Let’s say your client is a skincare brand catering products specifically for teenagers. Your target audience is teenagers aged 14-19. Some of the common characteristics of this audience are the heavy use of social media platforms, trends, memes, and catchy language. Therefore, when copywriting for a moisturizer, you will have to make sure that it is creative, catchy, and trendy to attract a young audience.
4. Know the competitors
Researching your client and their product will help your copy be truthful and relevant. However, when you research your client’s competitors, you will find inspirations and loopholes that you can use to make a better and more attractive copy.
5. Make it convincing
The ultimate aim is to make the customer take a particular action like buying the product or contacting the business. The copy has to be convincing enough to influence customers to purchase. Using powerful words and a persuasive tone is a great way to do this. However, since customers will be making the purchase or any other action, they will be investing their hard-earned money and valuable time. Therefore, the copy must contain genuine information and claims.
Try not to overuse the persuasive tone; use it in a way that will not annoy or offend customers. One mistake that new copywriters tend to make is using imposing words or language. Remember to persuade, but don’t impose.
Take a look at this copy for an example.
You were convinced, right? What you felt after going through this is how the reader should feel reading your copies. While writing, prioritize the objectives and goals laid down by the client. It is common for copywriters to get lost in the writing process and end up with a good copy but not what the client asked for. To avoid revisions, try to form a layout of the copy keeping in mind the objectives; this way, you will not deviate from them much.
6. Start by making a layout
Continuing from the above tip, making a layout before you begin to write will help you curate a well-guided copy. Copywriting involves various formats and sometimes no format, but all the copies have a similar structure. It is often challenging to come up with relevant and persuasive content. However, the writing process becomes more convenient when you have a structure.
7. Write with a free mind
Since copywriting is meant to influence the audience into making a decision, new copywriters often find themselves too stressed to curate persuasive and catchy copies. This is why most of the copies that a copywriter creates start to resemble each other. To avoid this, writing with a free mind without the pressure to curate content of one kind is vital.
Do not follow a particular style or tone; instead, write the way you want to. Write naturally. And, once you are done writing, revise it. Proofread what you have completed and edit it, keeping in mind how the target audience would like to read it.
Once you have written a few copies, try to analyze them. Look out for your writing style, specific words, and tones that are recurrent in your work. It will work as the very foundation of your writing skills as a copywriter.
Experiment with languages, words, and tones to further improve your skills. Read about literary devices and try to include them in your writing. To make the copy more catchy, use rhyming, alliteration, similes, imagery, symbolism, and metaphors.
It is also important that you develop the skill to write appropriate copies for different platforms. Different platforms will have different copy formats, lengths, tones, etc. A copy posted on a social media platform will differ from the ad displayed on the website. Therefore, learning what style works on one select platform is crucial.
9. Keep it conversational
The language and words you use in a copy depend significantly on your target audience. For example, if you have a teenage audience, using informal and trendy language will help catch their attention. And, if you have a professional audience, using formal language and precise words works better.
However, conversational and straightforward language is the best bet to make the copy readable and understandable. Try not to use jargon and technical words; instead, rely on simple words that everyone can understand.
10. Follow the success formulae
This is perhaps the most technical one among the listed copywriting tips for beginners. Every copy is different from the other. Copywriters have to come up with unique content consistently, and therefore the copies they create are different in length, language, tone, and style.
However, there are some basic formulae that every copywriter relies on; these are,
- FAB – features, advantages, benefits
As you might have guessed, this formula includes writing down the features offered by the product or service, advantages of using it over products, and benefits that one will gain from it.
- BAB – before, after, bridge
In this formula, you try to make the customers see the before and after of using the said product or service. You list down the present scenario – i.e., the before – then introduce a scenario that is quite different from the current scenario; this is the after. To bridge the gap between the before and the after, you introduce your product and its features.
- PAS – problem, agitate, solution
Copies with the PAS formula begin by listing down the problem, which is then agitated or aggravated using strong, emotional words, and – before customers start to become pessimistic and annoyed – offers a solution, which is the product or service.
- AIDA – attention, interest, desire, action
AIDA involves following a set pattern. You first try to gain the readers’ attention by using catchy words and sentences and then pique their interest by listing down the product and its features. To retain the customer’s attention, you try to increase their desire. And, to end the copy, you urge them to take a particular action.
- 4Cs- clear, concise, credible, and compelling
This is one of the most used formulae for copywriting. The copy you write uses simple, concise language and words and is transparent with its intention. This makes the copy appear credible and compelling.
11. Give it a jingle!
If you try to remember some iconic advertisements, you will notice that the ones that come to your mind first are the ones that have a jingle or a ring to them—for example, the Cadbury cricket ad. The same goes for copies. When you have to create a catchy, attractive, yet persuasive copy, adding a jingle or rhyme can help kill both birds with one stone. Furthermore, adding a jingle can leave the audience impressed and hooked. This way, they will be more likely to take action and look forward to future copies with great anticipation.
12. Jump on the trend wagon!
Trends are the best and easiest way to grab anybody’s attention. It is especially true if your copy will be published on social media platforms. With the growing prominence of social media, using trends to market a product has become immensely popular.
You can follow different social media platforms like Twitter or Instagram to stay updated with the trends. Try to jump on the trend wagon whenever you think that a trend is relevant to the product or service you have to write for.
One thing to note is that while using trends in copywriting is exciting, you must select the right ones. You can also use memes and jokes in the copy.
5 Ultimate Copywriting Tips for Beginners
Copywriting can be challenging, especially in the beginning. New content writers and copywriters often find it taxing to come up with the right words, tones, styles, and language to effectively grab the customers’ attention while subtly persuading them to take action.
To help you with this, there are tons of copywriting tips for beginners on the Internet. However, going through each one of them is a daunting task and one that can end up confusing you rather than helping you. That is why we have listed down the 5 ultimate copywriting tips for beginners.
1. Avoid heavy words; keep it simple!
While anybody can be a copywriter, not everyone can be great at it. Great copywriters are distinguished by their ability to use simple, clear, and concise language yet move the customers into action.
It is easy to get swayed by heavy words when you are new to copywriting and content writing. It becomes difficult not to be tempted by the jargon and difficult words in your vocabulary. However, on average, most customers prefer conversational language and words over ‘wordy’ words. The heavy words make you stand out for your extensive vocabulary and language skills, but they fail to be understood by most people.
Use simple, conversational words so that the customers will not have to reach for their dictionary. Clear and concise writing is capable of leaving the audience impressed and influenced. This way, you will also increase the copy’s reach, thereby helping in market penetration.
2. Use power words
Power words are, well, powerful. Powerful enough to convince and entice the audience. That is precisely why you should be using them to make your copies impeccable. Power words can be used anywhere and have the power to induce emotional responses, both positive and negative.
Some power words that you can use to write completing copies are,
These words evoke curiosity, anger, greed, and feelings of being scared, aroused, amused, safe, and encouraged. Content writers, marketers, authors, and copywriters use powerful words to captivate and influence readers.
3. Pay attention
Half of learning is observing and putting it into practice. So, the next time you come across a catchy advertisement on the TV, Internet, newspaper, radio, or magazine, be sure to pay attention to it. Observe and analyze closely how certain words or jingles have been used to promote the product or service.
You can also compare the copies of different brands offering the same products to see how one product can be marketed differently. It will give you new ideas to implement. Pay close attention to how the idea has been conveyed and how the customers are subtly persuaded. While you are doing so, remember to observe from both a copywriter’s and customer’s point of view. As an exercise, try analyzing this L’OREAL ad.
4. Don’t be scared to experiment
A copywriter is expected to curate content for different clients, products, and services. These copies are published on various platforms like social media, newsletters, magazines, etc. The copies often vary in length, format, tone, and language. When every aspect of copywriting is volatile and subject to change, it is a given that the content will also have to differ every time.
As a copywriter, you will be required to curate unique copies. Even if you are a very creative person, there are chances that you will run out of ideas. And when you do, experimenting with the content will be the only way to breakthrough.
Experimenting with your language, tone, words, or writing style is a great way to keep your work fresh and catchy. To attract readers, you can include irony, sarcasm, jokes, or memes. If you have been writing copies in a formal tone, you might want to consider adopting the informal style. You never know; you might discover something that you are exceptionally good at.
Take this ad by Mercedes-Benz, there are only 14 words, but these words are sufficient to deliver the message to the readers. Also, the image displayed attracts the reader’s attention and backs the claims. You can get inspired by such ads and experiment using similar tactics.
5. Persuade, don’t impose!
Copywriting is all about persuading readers to take a specific action. New copywriters often find it challenging to use the right persuasive words without sounding imposing. A reader should get all the relevant information about the product or service without feeling obliged to take action. If you overuse persuasive words or strong language, it can upset, offend and annoy the reader.
Instead, use powerful words to induce them into taking action. Lure the customers into thinking that they are missing out on the best product in a positive way. Evoke their emotions and feelings by using words that trigger these emotions. Try to use gentle and persuasive words, and don’t come off too strong.
Before closing off, let us quickly go through the key takeaways of this article.
Copywriting is writing content to promote a product or service while influencing customers into taking a specific action. It involves using words that work to entice readers. It is broadly agreed that almost anyone can become a copywriter given their willingness to learn. Aspiring copywriters must read extensively. Reading will help improve your language and communication skills. You will know what words work and how to write short, grammatically correct sentences.
Also, practice writing. Write different types of copy and for various business sectors and products. Use literary tools to add a bit of freshness to your copies. To make your learning more guided, follow these copywriting tips,
- Use simple, conversational words instead of heavy jargon
- Make use of power words to write an impactful copy
- Observe the ads and copies you come across; learn from them
- Experiment with new words, styles, tones, and structures
- Use subtle persuasion; never impose
Copywriting is a growing career that is highly sought after. A copywriter is required to make words click together, attract readers, and convince them about the product. You will be curating creative content and challenging your limits. The copywriting world, at first, might seem daunting and overwhelming. With the Internet overflowing with copywriting tips for beginners, you might feel more lost than you were in the beginning. To avoid drowning in these tips, follow a selected few to build your base. Then, keep on adding new skills and formulae to this base.
There are various aspects in copywriting; however, the following are some of the basics of copywriting,
1. Clear, concise language
2. List benefits over features
3. Research your client and market
4. SEO optimized copy
5. Persuade don’t impose
6. Include a relevant call to action
7. Write by keeping in mind your audience
Yes! Copywriting is a skill that anybody and everybody can learn. There are no specific degrees or courses that one has to take before entering copywriting. You can simply start copywriting by learning from the Internet.
Copywriting is considered a difficult task by many. However, it is easier than perceived. If the correct means are used to learn to Copywrite, anyone can become a master in copywriting within a few weeks or months.
1. Start reading to improve your language skills
2. Start writing blogs or product descriptions
3. Surf the Internet to find examples of copies and other resources
4. Write on different products, businesses, and industries
5. Build your portfolio
6. Research the topic well before writing
7. Intern or freelance to gain experience
8. Stay updated with fellow copywriters
1. Clear and precise writing
2. In-depth research about the market and audience
3. Effective CTA
4. SEO optimized copywriting
5. Attractive and catchy titles and language
6. Easy to understand language
With the growing prominence of digital marketing, SEO has become an imperative skill for copywriters. Knowing SEO can help copywriters write in-demand and highly-effective copies. However, it is not an obligatory skill.
YouTube, just like Google, is an excellent source for upskilling. One can find tutorials for almost every topic. There are thousands of YouTube videos that can be used for learning copywriting.