Why You Should Always Keep Your Content Fresh & Unique
The Internet is a crowded place, if you want to stand out you need to be unique. That means you need good, fresh, interesting content.
That’s because on the Internet copy is still king. There is just no way around it, if you want to build traffic, improve your search engine rankings and increase your sales you need great copy.
On the other hand, using old, duplicate copy can cause Google to penalize you and send your rankings plummeting.
Ask yourself, do eagerly visit sites that have old content that is available a number of different places on the web? Or would you prefer to visit a site that has new, fresh information?
Most people are going to choose that second option. In fact, effective copy is the best employee for which a marketer could ever ask. It never calls in sick. It never asks for a raise or an increased commission.
It literally works 24-hours per day. Best of all, it eliminates, in many cases, the need for the salesperson to close the deal in person. How many employees work this hard for so little reward?
Meanwhile, poorly-written copy tends to translate to a substandard product in the minds of those who read it.
So how do you get effective copy?
There are two general options:
- Write it yourself
- Hire a freelancer on a site like www.UpWork.com
Here are some tips if you choose to write the copy yourself:
The headline is the initial pitch and, therefore, the first impression a reader will have. Coming up with the right headline may take some time but the investment of time and effort is well worth it.
Before one even sets pen to paper, it’s important to study other headlines. Research the market, get to know the target demographic and get into their heads.
It should hit the reader with words that are powerful and enticing. There are definitely some tried-and-true favorites where sales letter headlines are concerned.
They include attention-grabbing words and phrases such as:
- The Amazing Secrets of…
These words are all attention-grabbing in that they imply that something unknown and powerful about to be described. These words are frequently seen in sales letter headlines simply because they work.
Great writing starts with the very first paragraph which, after the headline, is likely the part most responsible for gaining and retaining the reader’s interest.
The technique of having a strong first paragraph is essential to any form of writing, news, fiction, political speech and the rest of it. This technique is equally important to sales writing.
Here are some techniques you can use:
The if/then statement is a powerful persuasion techniques and one of the foundational elements of successful writing. Examples of this would include:
“If you’re trying to make your lawn beautiful, then this is the most important message you will ever read.”
Asking a Question
Asking customers a question is a technique common to a lot of successful writing. It isn’t, however, quite as straightforward as one might believe. In this case, the writer walks sort of a tightrope.
The question must be phrased in such a way that the answer is advantageous toward reading the rest of the article.
The question must also be necessarily restrictive, so that the reader’s attention is directed where the writer intends.
Opening with a “shocker” is a time-tested and valuable technique. This technique can be found in any sort of persuasion writing.
The idea is to hit the audience with something they cannot ignore for cause of the statement being made being so in-your-face and bold.
Some writers liken the effect to being punched in the face, to use a somewhat crude analogy.
Benefits and features are two separate things entirely. To understand the difference, it’s useful to understand how these items are listed within effective copy.
Benefits answer the questions posed to the reader. Most importantly, they answer the “What’s in it for you?” element of a pitch.
Bullet points are a good way to address the need to answer such questions. For example:
How will the weight loss program make my life better?
- No working out
- No gym fees
- No pills
- No restrictive diets
Testimonials are so heavily-used in copy that they merit their own section. As much as they’re used, they’re often used to poor effect and even abused. Testimonials are a resource, not a filler material to make up for poor writing.
In far too many cases, an excellent article, at the end, leaves the reader confused as to what they should do next.
This is one of the most critical parts of writing and constitutes the element where the greatest amount of mistakes are made.
Each article should have some type of call to action that is presented to the reader at the end. It can be something as simple as visit this website to learn more about this subject. You could also advertise a product.
Deliver the instructions in the same direct and clear fashion as one might expect an ER surgeon to give instructions to their staff or a military commander would direct their troops. Simple, comprehensive and clear statements.
Instilling a sense of urgency into the action is so important that it merits its own section. Quite often, this task is accomplished by making an offer that has a definite expiration date.
An example would be “Respond within 30 days and get 10% off!” This gives a reader a reason to act sooner rather than later.
After all that work put into gaining a reader’s confidence, it would be a shame to tear it all down by telling a lie.
A lie might not be intentional – that’s why it’s important to keep materials up to date and as accurate as possible.
This has to do with the single greatest asset any writer has: credibility.
If the reader cannot believe your words, how can they have any justified faith in what you say to do? There are some ways to word your copy to avoid propagating lies.
The key is using closed, committal statements versus more open-ended, unmanageable statements. This can be described as doing the following if your article as a sales element to it:
- A powerful, attention-grabbing headline
- An opening paragraph that cements their interest
- Bullet points that describe features and benefits
- Testimonials that remove skepticism
- Guarantees that assure trust
- An offer they cannot refuse
- Specific instructions regarding how to order
- A closing with a sense of urgency
- A P.S. that maximizes response
Because so few businesspeople have actually mastered the art of writing, any business owner who does so enjoys a distinct advantage over their competition.
Doing so is not so difficult as one might assume though it does require diligence, practice and follow through. Writing is essentially the same as is any other form of communication.
It entails grabbing the person’s attention, involving them in the narrative and leading them comfortably and logically along to reach the writer’s desired conclusions.