What IS Copywriting Strategy?
If you’re in business and you want to advertise and get PROFIT from your advertising, then your Copywriting Strategy is of utmost importance
There’s a lot of confusion around about exactly what copywriting strategy is. It’s purpose is to help you create effective, efficient advertising and marketing, which brings YOU results i.e. Money In The Bank. First, let me tell you what it is NOT…
- Copywriting Strategy is NOT wishy-washy feel-good “positive thinking” which you incorporate into your advertising, it’s so much more solid than this kind of thing
- Copywriting Strategy is NOT some untested, unproven, half-baked idea an advertising executive came up with one Friday evening, after a few hours smoking some funny stuff, out of desperation to keep an important account, it’s driven by real world results
- Copywriting Strategy is NOT a bunch of words which, when read or heard by your prospect, magically get them to click on your ads, call your number or buy your products, there’s no trickery or wordplay involved
- Copywriting Strategy is NOT some secret methodology the “gurus” have been hiding from you, and only those who join their high priced coaching programs are exposed to the secrets within, it works on everyday principles any business owner can use
- Copywriting Strategy is NOT a new product I’m releasing which will cost you $4997 plus $297 a month until you cry uncle, all you do is follow this blog and all will be revealed
- And Copywriting Strategy is NOT something which requires a college degree, or extensive study, or even any more smarts than what you have right now, I’m a simple guy and I like to keep things simple
Basically, copy strategy is all about the WAY you USE your sales copy, for maximum conversions. And by the word “copy”, I mean any written copy, Whether it’s opt-ins you’re looking for, sales, signups, members, clients, whatever, the specific way you use any sales copy you might have can and will make or break even the best planned marketing campaign, with the biggest budget.
Why do you think it takes thousands, even millions of dollars to run a fairly typical advertising campaign with a regular ad agency?
It’s because ad agencies would not know the first THING about Copywriting Strategy!
And you don’t need to go too in-depth to see this for yourself, if you haven’t already. Any campaign you’re aware of, whether it’s for a fast food franchise, a car manufacturer, doesn’t matter. They don’t employ any copy strategy at all. They don’t target a precise enough market, they don’t tailor their advertising to this market, they don’t do any of the things the small business owner has to do, because he or she doesn’t have millions of dollars of someone else’s money to throw away on a trendy TV ad campaign.
Most readers of this blog are small business owners, entrepreneurs, people who want to start a part time business, and YOU desperately NEED to have every marketing dollar working for you at full capacity, and then some!
Here’s a simple example of Copywriting Strategy in action in a small business:
John Smith, owner of Main Street Mechanical, gets a copywriter to write a direct response ad for his business, to get new customers in the door. He parts with however many thousands of dollars the ad costs, and after a few weeks he starts running it his local free newspaper.
What went wrong? It’s a good ad. Attention grabbing headline, great offer, it cost an arm and a leg by most small business owner’s standards, shouldn’t people be rushing in, wallets in hand? There have been a small number of enquiries from the ad, but John wants ROI…
Now, let’s say John has enough cash to have a copywriting strategy expert analyse the problem. The copy strategy expert checks the following:
- It’s a good direct response ad, written by a professional copywriter
- John’s business has a good reputation in the area, so bad word of mouth isn’t the problem
- The ad actually ran, (You’d be surprised how often the search for hidden problems ends here…), the address and phone number are correct, all logistical details like these are in order
However, the copy strategy expert does find a few definite problems, and items to test in order to bring out the best in this particular marketing campaign. He or she finds:
- John ran his ad in the “advertiser’s section“, a few pages devoted to ads for local businesses, because the rep from the paper suggested this section first, as it is the cheapest
- John had the ad run at a fairly small size, after all, it’s cheaper and as they say, if your prospect is interested they’ll read the smallest ad to get what they want
- The people answering John’s phones aren’t fully aware of the details of the campaign, and aren’t all that keen on “closing” like a salesman
The first issue John has is where he’s running his ad. Most people would suggest the automotive section of the paper, as his business is a mechanical repair business. However, this would not necessarily improve results, as people reading the auto section are looking for new cars, used cars, or articles about cars they like.
Testing will tell John where the most profitable section is, however the main problem identified here is: The advertiser’s section is definitely NOT the best place to run your ad. Few people read newspapers for the ads, and almost all readers will skip the whole section, unless they’re looking for something in particular. John’s ad joins the “herd” here, even though it is a far superior ad “on paper”. And it’s value goes down accordingly.
Second problem: The copywriter and John’s idea of the size of the ad have not connected. John has specified a certain size of ad and the copywriter has done a good job. However, John wanted to shrink the ad, and reduce his advertising bill.
I am not suggesting for John to run a bigger ad next week. (Although it could trigger a few more enquiries). What I am suggesting is if John wants to run a smaller ad, the ad needs to be written appropriately for it’s size. All the sales copy in the original ad looked very small when shrunk down, it’s easy to read when larger, but reading the ad looks like hard work, mentally and physically, if the text becomes too cramped.
A smaller ad can only do the job of a smaller ad, such as generate leads to a voicemail or website. John could have run a more basic ad driving people to his website, where he could have had all the wonderful copy he had written for him.
It’s the same with ads which sell directly “off the page”, with an order form, order hotline, etc, vs a lead generating ad, which drives people to a website or voicemail, and the sales copy can come after that. There’s a limited price point of around $100 for product being sold “off the page”, because at higher prices, you’re asking the ad to do too much. Kinda like getting on a 50cc scooter, heading for the highway and trying to tear along flat out with cars and trucks flying past you. It’s trouble all the way.
The third problem: Staff. I often call this a $15 problem, because good staff will serve your business well for $15 an hour. (If you can find them…). It’s clear that John’s staff are costing him business. Although firstly John has to take some responsibility – he hasn’t clearly defined the marketing plan, the ad or it’s offer to the staff. Sure, it’s up on the wall near the phones but that’s not enough.
Also, John has a fairly typical small business staff of tradespeople and temps. It’s not that we expect them to close sales like a born shark, but a little sales training and attitude adjustment would not go astray. One way to do this is with a Monday Morning Kickstart – 8:30am Monday, team meeting, goals, sales targets, incentives, recognition for achievement, etc.
And on incentives, why SHOULD John’s staff try and get anyone in? If John was offering a small amount, $5, $10, per person booked in for a service, a staff member could potentially double their income by encouraging people to book in. And let’s guess that the average service has around $50 profit in it, most people would be happier with 10 bookings at $40 profit each, than one or two at $50. You can explain about how their jobs rely on new customers until you’re blue in the face, it doesn’t work. They may even take it as a threat to their positions. But hand over part of a dollar you never otherwise would have had, and they’ll make you much happier.
This is a very basic example of a copy strategist working with a troubled campaign to get things working nicely. He or she has probably put at least a few thousand more in the owner’s pocket per month. Seems simple enough, however without this information, John could have run his ad again the next week, and the week after, then pulled it and banned the paper’s rep from his shop. This may not be such a bad thing, there are so many other ways to advertise.
He also could have made his copywriter redo some of the ad, looking for some magic to come from the copywriter. Hopefully at this point the copywriter would realize the ad size issue and connect with John’s problem there.
And, his staff could have gone on costing him sales, either through neglect or ignorance, and John may stay none the wiser. Hopefully his reputation and his location count for enough to keep him in business. And hopefully no other mechanics with seriously good marketing move in nearby.
What is YOUR copywriting strategy?
Do you even have one? No shame if you haven’t thought about this much before, it’s rarely taught, it often goes under the generic guise of “marketing consulting”, and all businesses need to review their copy strategy at least once per month, minimum.
If you’ve had some marketing materials created by a copywriter, whether they charged you $1,000 or $25,000, how much copy strategy did the copywriter talk with you? A great deal of copywriters are simply sales-letter-writers, they churn out ads and sales letters for their clients upon request, never considering the copy strategy aspect, if their client even needs a sales letter at all.
What do DO with that sales letter is the important part, not the writing of the sales letter itself. I am one of those few copywriters who will admit to you that WHO you send your marketing materials to and HOW you use them are just as important, if not MORE important, than the marketing materials themselves.
Legendary copywriter Gary Halbert said: “We’ll both go into business and I’ll give you anything you want, a great product, a great sales letter, great location, whatever, and I’ll be getting rich while you’re going broke because I’ll have a starving market”
If you are doing any advertising or marketing at all, how well are you using your materials, your media? Are you connecting with your market? Are you selling to them in the way they like to buy? Are you even talking to the right people at all?
If you want to make absolutely sure you are doing everything right, if you want your systems set up to guarantee maximum results in minimum time, then simply contact me via the form below and I’ll create a copywriting strategy plan specifically for YOUR business, YOUR products, and most importantly, YOUR market.
For a modest investment of only $997, which is far less than any copywriter worth their salt will charge you, you’ll receive:
- Full business assessment - Give me your ads, sales letters, your campaign details, I’ll talk to your staff, I’ll talk to your competition, and you’ll get a complete picture of exactly where you are right now and how to get to where you want to go
- Complete written copywriting strategy action plan - Full details on your current situation, issues, challenges, advantages and areas to improve on, as well as specific instructions on how to implement all advice, how to correctly utilize your current marketing materials and exact details on marketing materials you can have created for you in the future to continue your progress
- Monthly ongoing support - Either by phone or in person, I’ll be available to you on a priority basis for any decisions you wish to make, to critique any marketing materials and marketing plans you have, two hours per month for your first year as a client I’ll be there when you need to run something by me
Here’s how it works:
- I’ll schedule an initial one hour call to go over details with you, get the big picture, you can explain what you want, what you need, and so on. Before this call, it’s best if you send me absolutely everything you have. You’ll receive full instructions for this in your welcome package which will arrive in the mail shortly after joining me. (Please allow 2 to 4 weeks for delivery outside of Australia)
- I may call upon you for additional details or information as I research media, talk to your staff, talk to your competition, etc. The faster you respond the faster I can have answers for you
- I’ll present my report of findings to you either over the phone or in person and you can clarify any points you are unsure of, and I’ll lay out my strategic plan for your copywriting and how it needs to unfold for maximum chances of success. You’ll have a few different options to choose from, and if any further work is required from myself or anyone else, you’ll have some different pricing options to suit your budget.
It’s simple. You can either go it alone if you’re confident of being able to keep an eye on all the myriad of problems, opportunities, issues, decisions and challenges a small business owner faces every single day.
Or, you can have me in your corner, I’ve got your back as you come out fighting and knock the competition into next week. Get the ball rolling now by clicking on the button below and take the uncertainty out of marketing your business for success.