As someone who is incredibly susceptible to well-written copy, I am sharing some of my top conversion copywriting tips.
I cannot tell you the amount of email lists I have signed up to, free trials I am on, and how many random companies I follow on Instagram. As a copywriter myself, you would think I would know better, but the reality is that conversion copy works really, really well. And frankly if that isn’t a testament to why SMEs need to invest in it then I don’t know what is.
Conversion copy is the mathematics of copywriting, and requires you to stretch your left brain. I like to think of conversion copy like an equation; audience demographic + needs and pain points = call to action. Once again, I’m a copywriter, I literally don’t understand anything about maths – but you get the picture.
What I’m really trying to say is that conversion copywriting is simple, effective, and to the point. It’s also got a great ROI, so it is an excellent thing to invest in as an SME. Once you understand how it works, it isn’t too hard to make it work for yourself. But I’m warning you now; understanding it in no way stops you from being a victim to it.
Tip #1: Work Backwards
Before embarking on your conversion copy customer journey, you need to strongly consider where you want your reader to end up.
It’s about more than just I want heaps of web traffic – how much web traffic, what quality of web traffic, who do you want visiting your site. All of these things are essential to know how you will structure your messaging.
So, for example, say you are running an event and you need to sell tickets. Well, okay, like, that’s obvious. But who do you want at your event, how many tickets do you have, what are you offering these people, what do they want?
Good and effective conversion copy is singular in focus and intent. Find one thing you want to achieve with your copy and gun for it.
Tip #2: Check Your Pain Points
I feel like I say this everytime I write a blog about copywriting tips, but knowing who your audience is and what their pain points are is essential to successful conversion copy.
I find a good way to think about this is like if I were trying to convince different people in my life to go to an event with me. Think about all the things that people in your social circle like and how you would adjust your sales pitch to them. Say if it was for your parents, you might talk about how reputable and sophisticated the event is. But if it was for your friends in their 20’s you might be more inclined to talk about all the fun parties and how great the value is.
But you only get to choose one piece of conversion copy, so you need to pick a specific audience and write to their pain points. If your audience is parents and families, you will need to let them know how your event is family-friendly and great for kids.
Keep your target audience in mind at all times and you’ll be sorted.
Tip #3: Language Warning!
Warning: language is not nothing when it comes to conversion copy.
Different demographics respond really differently to different language usage. Okay, so let’s think about this event again and say it’s a music festival. And say you are really keen to have a 60+ audience at your event. Well, maybe the best way to do that isn’t to entice them with ‘sick tunes’ and ‘non-stop parties’ or ‘the event on everyone’s 2022 bingo card’.
Actually, the bingo thing might work …
Basically, if you were talking to 60+ year olds and trying to get them to go to an event, you would probably try to avoid viral memes, youth language, or frankly exhausting sounding promises.
BUT, if you were trying to attract people in their early 20’s, then that might be the go!
PSA: if you don’t understand a fad word’s meaning, please don’t use it. Or ask your teenage child if it’s the correct usage.
Tip #4: Where Did You Come From, Where Did You Go?
It is really key that when you create conversion copy that you understand what stage of the conversion process your reader is in. There are three stages of conversion that we look at with this: awareness, consideration, and decision.
I often see this with niche, wackily titled tech products. I will get an ad that says something like ‘Sign Up To A Free Trial Of TechGizmo3000!’ This means, quite literally, nothing to me. You could be speaking a sim language for all I care. But say the TechGizmo3000 was the perfect workflow system for copywriters – well that’s something that would pique my interest.
Specifically, what I am getting at is that I am in the awareness stage of the TechGizmo3000. I might be in the right demographic for it, and so I might be a candidate for targeted ads, BUT I don’t know what it is, and I don’t have enough knowledge about the product for it to mean anything to me.
However, if it was phrased like ‘Optimise your copywriting career by working smarter not harder – FREE TRIAL!’, then I would be like, huh, okay, sick, and click through.
Essentially, speak to where your audience is at. A few quick tips:
- Cold audiences – such as those you’re sending your Facebook ads to – are almost always going to be in the ‘awareness stage’ and know very little about your brand and offering. These people need to be drip fed information about who you are, what you do, and the benefits. They are going to need a lot of hand-holding to get from never-heard-of-you-before to biggest-brand-advocate-and-repeat-purchaser.
- Warm audiences – such as those who have been following you on social media for a few months, or subscribed to your newsletter, are going to have a bit more knowledge about who you are and what you do. They are half-way to converting and just need a bit of a nudge, maybe some case studies or testimonials paired with a free trial.
- Hot audiences – such as long-time subscribers and past customers – know exactly who you are, what you do, and the benefits. They probably just need a small prompt to convert, like a free gift with purchase, a loyalty program or something similar.
Tip #5: Short, Sweet, and a Little Stupid
Well maybe not stupid, but we aren’t trying to be too clever with our copy here. This may seem like a benign conversion copywriting tip, but it can be useful to remember this isn’t the Rosetta Stone.
Conversion copy does best with less words, so you need to make sure those words are clean, clear, and effective. We aren’t trying to be the next Shakespeare, or contribute to the literature on modern day anthropology. We are simply trying to convert.
A good way to practise is to write down your initial message and then try to get it down to 20 words – it may need more in the end but it shows you what’s essential to your messaging.
Fly Free Conversion Queens
Optimising your copywriting for conversions doesn’t have to be complicated. In fact the less complicated the better. These conversion copywriting tips will help you write simple, effective copy that will lead to sales and results in a very direct way.