Articles on Writing Matters:

Foundation of Great Copywriting

When we talk about copywriting, we're talking about the marketing messages that you produce to reach your potential clients or customers. Marketing messages might consist of a couple of sentences to describe a wonderful product, or they may be as long as three pages to describe a new service you're introducing.

Regardless of the length, the goal remains the same - write a strong enough message that will inspire your clients or customers to purchase your products or services.

In order to write strong copy, you need a good foundation. The foundation for great marketing messages is three-fold. You must know your niche, you must articulate what you do, and you must show potential clients and customers exactly what you or your products can do for them.

First, know your niche. I believe that one of the strongest things you can do for your business is to define and know your niche. How are you going to write strong messages if you don't know who you're targeting? When you know your niche, you can find out exactly what they need and you can write your marketing messages geared to that.

Choosing a niche, and knowing that niche very intimately will help you create marketing messages that will touch that group, and help you connect with them.

Second, you must be able to articulate what you do. If you're niche doesn't know what you're offering and exactly how you can serve them, you'll never reach them. What is it that you do? Are you a coach? Do you provide software consulting? Do you create handmade toiletries? Are you part of a direct sales company? When someone asks what you do, you must be able to clearly tell them - without hesitation and without fumbling your words or rambling.

Practice answering the question what do you do? Write down your initial answer and then refine it over the next few days. You'll continue to refine this answer as your business grows. The important thing is to create an answer that is clear.

This is also true for your products and services. Every time you develop a new product or service, answer the question "how can this help my niche?" This is the question you will answer when writing your marketing materials, so think about it each time you develop something new.

Your copy does not need to be elaborate. The ultimate goal of your copy is to convert potential customers into buying customers. You will accomplish that goal with concise, simple copy that tells your customers exactly what benefit they will receive from your product or service.

When writing your copy, don't over-think it. The easier to read, the better. Think about what you like and don't like about sales copy. Study other sales letters and marketing pages. See what other writers do, and what appeals to you.

You don't need to study long and hard, or be a gifted writer to create great sales copy. Simply think about your niche, what their needs are, and how your products can help with their needs!

Jenn Givler
Business Empowerment Coach
03 Dec 2006

Jenn Givler is a Business Empowerment Coach. She teaches women entrepreneurs how to start and market their businesses. For weekly business tips and advice:

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Freelance Copywriter Secrets: Removing Readers' Mental Barriers

As a freelance copywriter, I have come to think of my work as that of slowly, methodically removing a reader's doubts, apathy and other mental barriers. In some ways, my job is like being a matchmaker between a good, quality product and the person who can truly benefit from owning it.

Here are a few of the mental barriers that a freelance copywriter may have to remove between a product or service, and the potential customer who truly needs and wants what this product can do:

Lack of awareness that the person may actually have a need or a problem. Some needs require education before the reader recognizes that it exists. Paying for children's college education might be an example here. Many parents have no idea what inflation will do to the cost of college tuition by the time their kids reach the age of 18.

Lack of concern because the problem seems too remote. Insurance agents and financial planners face this issue every day. We all should plan for retirement, and out deaths are inevitable, but many people lull themselves into complacency because both events seem a long way off. In order to sell a product these people truly need, they must first be shaken out of that complacency.

Lack of interest and attention. the average person is exposed to 10,000 advertisements and marketing messages a day. In order to grab a reader's attention, you must start with a headline that appeals to readers' self interest. Check out my article on
Freelance Copywriter Secrets: How to Tap Into Your Readers' Deepest Needs to learn more about how to appeal to a person's deepest needs.

Doubts and skepticism. As a result of those 10,000 marketing messages, each claiming to offer the very best widget known to man, people are naturally skeptical of puffery. Support your claims with facts, specific examples, testimonials from satisfied customers, scientific data, etc.

"They're all alike." Shame on you if you allow people to think your product is just like everyone else's. That is the sign of a freelance copywriter just not doing his or her job. Stand out! Draw attention to why your product is better, different and worth a higher price. But you can only do this by creating a category of one, and then come to OWN that category. Your product must be the biggest (or even better, the only) fish in the pond. Your job is to create that pond. Another article I've written that you should read is
Freelance Copywriter Secrets: 10 Steps to Writing a Powerful USP, because it will show you how to create that category of one.

It is extremely important to understand why a person, who can truly benefit from a product or service, may still choose not to buy it. I want to anticipate these objections and barriers head-on, so I write out every reason, objection, doubt and misunderstanding my potential readers may have.

Then I write copy that answers each of these problems. In so doing, I am able to chip away at their barriers.

freelance copywriter, freelance commercial writer
COPYRIGHT © 2006, Charles Brown All rights reserved.
Charles Brown
Dallas, Texas
16 Dec 2006

Charles Brown is a Dallas, Texas based freelance copywriter who writes web copy, advertisements, newsletter articles and direct mail that turns readers into YOUR customers. Visit his blog at or contact him at 817.715.3852 or ****.

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