Did you know that on average website visitors will only read 20% of the content on the page? That’s not enough… We must strive and write for more!
I remember beginning to write. It happened quickly and it never seemed hard. The only thing I struggle with when it came to putting pen to paper was using an ink pen. Pens seemed good for blots on the page and flicking at other classmates.
In fact, as someone who earns their living by writing I am ashamed to say I was the only person still writing with a pencil in my class aged 8. The reason? The ink didn’t flow quickly enough for the rate I wanted to write.
That was a long time ago and actually I have since developed a love affair with pens and favour a Uniball for journal writing and the humble BIC medium biro for notes. Everything I write is in black ink and that is also not negotiable. Mind you, I do a lot of dictation and masses of typing too but certain things just have to be written by hand – not negotiable.
So what does this have to do with writing content and copy for businesses?
As Ann Handley says, “In marketing, I value three things: quality over quantity, great writing, building an audience over stuffing a pipeline until it bursts at its seams with so-called leads.” We do too…
For me, it proves that I have been a wordsmith for more than 50 years and that I am pretty obsessive about the written word – what it says and how it looks. But people say to me, ‘Yes, but writing, I mean, it’s so well, last century.’ Maybe. We all love podcasts, webinars and video, yet the irony is that those are all words too! Someone needs to write them, so I write scripts for webinar, videos, podcasts and speeches as well. Where would we be without words? Even on Pinterest the words augment the images and help to demonstrate your perspective. It’s a case of ‘Hey, do you see what I see?’
I love Twitter too. Yes, you have limited characters to play with but the discipline of crafting a message quickly, effectively in as fewer characters as possible is my version of Sudoku or poetry. Having been tweeting since 2009, I have written millions of characters. Writing never goes away it seems. There’s been an absolute resurgence in diary writing and blogs, and we read and write more than ever. Did you know:
- 80% of readers see your headlines, but only 20% read the rest?
- Shorter tweets work best – around 100-115 words?
- 74% of people pay attention to grammar – and 59% said they won’t work with a company who posts grammatical errors?
- Websites who blog have 434% more indexed pages?
- Blog posts with images get 94% more views?
So why use a professional copywriter or storyteller for your brand, product or service?
It’s quite simple. They can weave stories, choose the most appropriate and powerful language with which to describe your company and convey a message simply and effectively.
Content marketing is how we now promote our businesses.
It’s essential and can often do the selling for you. Why is that important? Easy. On the whole, people don’t like to be sold to. They enjoy coming across information that will give them enough to make a decision. Sales people are finding people are ringing them to place the order, or to make final checks about their purpose. They don’t want to be sold to. So therefore content now has a very different role to play.
Find a versatile and experienced copywriter, and don’t write copy yourself.
If you have a versatile copywriter who understands your brand and can really convey what makes you special then you will see the uplift of sales. Just tweaking your home page copy or revising your email marketing campaign copy will make a difference. I spent two hours working on fewer than 200 words on a page at a tech company. They achieved a 17% uptake in sales from that page. For example, A/B testing can change email responses by as much as 25%! And including action words in your copy can boost your response by 17%?
So what does a copywriter do that makes a difference?
In that instance I looked at the choice of language, the dynamic verbs, the sense of urgency, the extraneous words that were blurring the message. Looking at where the page sat within the website it was obvious that anyone clicking on the page would be moving towards purchase. We didn’t need generic messaging we wanted a clear journey with visible signposts that would convince people they had found their answer.Experienced copywriters understand buyer personas, motivation and behaviours. Click To Tweet
They can use copy to cajole, convince and prompt people to take the action you want them to take. Poor quality content can do more harm than good. It can make your business look stodgy, old fashioned or simply incompetent.
My teacher once wrote on my exercise book, ‘Vivienne, you can and must do better’. I’ve spent all my life following that advice and will help your content achieve its aims.