Before you even put pen to paper or fingers to your keyboard, you need a brief. Without understanding what you want to achieve from your copy how on earth will you achieve it? Taking time to answer the following questions will help you create more effective copy.
What type of copy are you creating?
Is it for inbound or outbound marketing? Is it a website, brochure, blog post, advertorial, flyer, social media post, email or video script? Different types of copy need to be approached in slightly different ways.
What is the purpose of the copy?
Do you want to raise awareness, provide information, promote a new product or service, offer a discount, generate leads? Think about what you want to achieve from your copy.
Who is the target audience?
Consumer or business? New or existing customer? Student, employed or retired? A business owner or employee? Start-up business or corporate? Homeowner or parent? Build a profile of your target audience.
Where will your copy be read?
Will your audience be at work, at home, at an event, on their commute? How much time will they have to read your copy? Will they be expecting it or are you contacting them for the first time?
What do you want the reader to do after reading your copy?
What action do you want readers to take? Visit your website, call you, make an enquiry, sign-up, donate, subscribe, request more information, place an order, book an event? Think about your call to action.
What services or benefits will you promote?
You won’t promote every service or product you offer in every piece of copy. Equally, different benefits will appeal to different audiences. Think about which services, products and benefits are most relevant.
What concerns might the reader have?
When you are trying to sell a product or service, you need to be aware of what concerns buyers may have; cost, time, effort, risk. What are the main objections you come across and how can you manage these?