The most vital characteristic of copy that sells is persuasive writing. Once you have mastered the ability to weave words in a way that will persuade people to buy something, you've pretty much got it made as an Internet marketer.
Persuasive writing is one of the most valuable skills you'll ever learn ... and, consequently, one of the hardest to grasp. If you're currently struggling in this area, take a look at these 9 persuasive writing tips, and start watching your copy improve.
1. Tell a Story
Stories are one of the best ways to connect on a personal level with your audience. By sharing an incident from your life -- one that your copy's audience can relate to -- you immediately begin to feel less like a stranger and more like an acquaintance to them.
2. Share Your Personality
Where are you more likely to shop for basic groceries at -- the jolly, but small-time grocer down the street you've been friends with for decades, or the big, new, expensive supermarket downtown? I'm betting that most of you voted the former.
Why? Because you know the grocer. Personally. And the trouble with Internet selling is that it's hard for you to get to know your customers and vice versa. By sharing your personality and just being yourself in your copy, you'll help rectify that situation.
3. Important Info Goes First
In high school literature, I was always taught that the ideal place for your most factual, well-researched, and supported points was right at the end of the essay, before the conclusion.
Not so in web copywriting. Most people don't have time to read through your entire copy, so they judge you by your first few sentences. That's where your important information, most eloquent copy, and persuasive statistics should go.
4. Talk Results
Cut right to the chase. Start talking results in your copy; what your product will do for your customer.
After all, the only reason why people browse the Internet is because they want benefits. Solutions to problems. Results. Guarantee them results, and you'll be able hold their attention for longer and be more likely to persuade them to buy.
5. Repeat Winning Reasons
Have you discovered an especially good reason why people should buy your product? Good. Put it at the top, but don't forget to repeat it further down.
Repetition is a crucial element of any learning process, so if you want your visitors to remember a specific reason why they should buy your product, repeat it!
6. Be the Expert
Nobody listens to the guy who doesn't sound like he's sure of himself. After all, if he's not confident about his own capabilities, why should you be confident about his leadership?
It's the same concept (although slightly tweaked) in copywriting. You are the expert. You know what you're talking about, and you have to let your readers know that.
7. Social Proof
Social proof is one of the most powerful tools around in persuasive writing. If you want someone to buy something they've never bought before, show them that others just like them have already taken the leap and are happy with their results.
Flattering testimonials and large social media followings are two prime indicators of social proof.
8. Abolish Inhibitions
Everybody has inhibitions before making a purchase. We all have doubts before we buy something -- will it be worth the money? Will it hold up for as long as I need it to? Will I in any way be endangered/compromised by it?
These inhibitions are bad enough in a supermarket, but they're amplified on the Internet, since it's much easier for shady characters to get away with a scam on the world wide web than it is for them to do so in "real life".
The quick fix? Address and abolish those inhibitions. Bring them up in your copy. Don't waste time broaching the subject or beating around the bush -- just get right to it and say "no, we won't scam you" or "yes, our product is worth its price tag" (mind you, you'll have to phrase it differently ;-)).
9. Be Clear About Next Steps
After you hook your visitor in and convince them that they need your product in your life, you can't just sit back and expect cash to start rolling in. Your job isn't over yet.
You need to be clear about the next steps the visitor needs to take in order to purchase the product. Guide them right through your sales funnel with prominent buttons and call to actions.
Persuasive copywriting is hardly an easy thing to learn, but learning it is well worth the time and effort you'll invest. With these 9 tips to guide you, you'll soon be well on your way to become a master persuader (yes, it's a word).
Leave a comment below and tell us which tip you thought was the most helpful!