GREAT SALES COPY WITHOUT THE HYPE

In the world of today’s marketing, there’s little room for bright red fonts and tricky language, although people still use them both. Not only is it possible to write effective sales copy without twisting the truth, it’s essential to do so. Customers today have been marketed to for years, and they’re wise enough to recognize hype.

 

WHAT YOUR CUSTOMERS NEED TO KNOW

Honest sales copy tells the reader what they need to know about the product. The best sales copy answers their questions before they have a chance to ask them. When you write your sales copy, put yourself in the shoes of your reader and ask, “What do I need to know before buying this product?”

 

FOCUS ON THE READER

Good copy doesn’t just describe features, but also outlines the tangible benefits these features offer the customer. Don’t expect your customers to fill in the blanks. Because they’re going to be reading your copy with a skeptical mind, you have to explain to them how the product’s features achieve these benefits for them.

For example, let’s imagine you’re selling a mattress made with NASA technology that molds to your body’s shape. The result is that you get a better night’s sleep. Because it fits your shape, you’re less likely to wake up in the middle of the night to change position. For each feature, tell the customer why and how it helps them.

 

BACKING UP CLAIMS

Since you’re trying to drive home the results of your product in your readers’ minds, you need to show them evidence to back up your claims. Show them how the product has helped others, and this will give the readers an idea of how it will help them. This is called “social proof” and it lends credibility to your statements.

What you need are honest testimonials from former customers. Some businesses hire writers to create fake testimonials or reviews for them, but you don’t have to do anything dishonest at all. In most cases, all you need to do is ask. If a customer is happy with your product, they’ll be okay with telling others. You can offer incentives like a free sample, a discount, or another special deal, but stress to the customer that you want their honest thoughts and feelings. Make sure they understand that they’re not obligated to give you a good review.

 

CONVERSATIONAL WORDING

Sales copy should be written in a conversational style that’s not stiff, formal or exaggerated. Exaggerated sales copy sounds “corporate” or dodgy to most people. Your copy should be written as though it’s someone telling a good friend or family member about the product. One way to keep your writing style in line is to record yourself reading it and listen to the recording.

 

MAKE IT SCANNABLE

Finally, make it easy to scan. The reader should be able to skim through the text and get the gist of it. Break up text into bullet-points, small paragraphs, and short sentences. Give each section a headline that summarizes what it’s about.

 

WHY HONEST SALES COPY WORKS

Honest sales copy works because people are aware of the tricks marketers have used to sell to them in the past. It also works because it lends you trust. When customers know you’re being honest with them, they’re much more likely to buy from you.

 

Activity: 

  1. Make a list of the benefits and features of your product or service.
  2. Make a list of potential sources for proof of the benefits, whether from your own customers or elsewhere. You’ll do more on this later.
  3. Explain your product or service to at least 2 friends who fit your customer market. Take notes on what you need to explain more clearly.
  4. Create an outline of the order in which you will present your sales copy. Use the 10-Point Sales Letter Checklist as a guide.