Archive

Archive for the ‘Copywriting’ Category

Copywriting: Do you take your prospects on a journey?

February 27th, 2014 3 comments

You’ve seen the statistics. Customers receive 12 million billion marketing messages a day.

Plus they’re busy, and have short attention spans.

So you may think, “I have to get my sales message and value prop to my customers as quickly as possible.”

But your goal as a marketer is not to get quick information in the hands of a customer. It’s to take them on …

 

The buyer’s journey

Let’s use “Star Wars” as an analogy.

George Lucas could have made a two-minute video on YouTube and said, “So … they’re brother and sister. And on top of it, the dude he’s fighting is actually his dad. Weird, huh?”

But if he did, I’m betting he wouldn’t have this level of brand loyalty more than 30 years later.

Storytelling is powerful.

It helps people see a new way of looking at the world. As a marketer, that includes how the world would be with your product or service in it.

By taking your prospects through a story, you help to welcome them into the world of your product, help them drop their defenses to actually hear what you’re saying, and get them to internalize your value proposition.

Your challenge is to decide how every element of your marketing can take them on that journey. For a simple purchase, this journey may happen in a single email or print ad. For a considered purchase, it may occur across an email drip campaign, nurture track or an entire marketing funnel.

You can watch the free MarketingExperiments Web clinic replay, “Copywriting on Tight Deadlines: How ordinary marketers are achieving 103% gains with a step-by-step framework,” to learn more about how story connects to the conversion process.

 

Photo attribution: Star Wars Blog

Read more…

Share and Enjoy:
  • LinkedIn
  • StumbleUpon
  • Facebook
  • del.icio.us
  • Digg

Copywriting: Is your landing page missing the “why” factor?

December 26th, 2013 No comments

In a recent Web clinic, Austin McCraw, Senior Editorial Analyst, and Ben Filip, Data Sciences Manager, both of MECLABS, revealed how marketers at an auto repair company increased purchases 36% by testing the copy on their landing page.

But first, let’s review the research notes for some background on the test.

Background: A medium-sized company selling an auto repair product.

Goal: To increase the number of purchases.

Primary Research Question: Which landing page will generate the highest conversion rate?

Approach: A/B multifactor split test

 

Control

 

The team hypothesized that a key problem identified in the control was the lack of one of the most critical elements of copy needed for a product – the “why” factor.

“They tell you what it is and what is does for you and these kinds of things, but they don’t ever touch on why somebody would need the product,” Ben said.

 

Treatment 

 

In the treatment, the team added the headline, “Does your car have a blown head gasket?” to address who the product is designed to help and the treatment included bullet points that list symptoms of a blown head gasket to support why visitors should use the product.

 

Results

  Read more…

Share and Enjoy:
  • LinkedIn
  • StumbleUpon
  • Facebook
  • del.icio.us
  • Digg

Copywriting: How long (or short) should your copy be?

How long should this blog post be?

What about your landing page? Or email?

Content length discussions are as old as human communication itself. When Ug (the first critic) said to Zog about his cave paintings, “You had me at ‘Zog kill bison.’ All the rest was unnecessary commentary. I lost interest.”

On Wednesday’s free MarketingExperiments Web clinic – “Long Copy vs. Short Copy: How discovering the optimal length of a webpage produced a 220% increase in conversion” – Flint McGlaughlin, Managing Director, MECLABS, will share our discoveries about copy length.

But first, we asked the MarektingExperiments community for their opinions on copy length. Here’s the long (and short) of it …

 

No such thing as too long or too short

There is no such thing as too long or too short when it comes to copy. It’s like a long ball or a short ball in football. If it’s effective, then that is the one to use. The right one.

The key to any copy is the headline, followed by the first paragraph and so on until the P.S., putting in sub-headings for the browsers and enough detail to emotionally engage the reader.

The same is true of video. When the quality of the writing is good, it creates emotional engagement with some logical elements which people use to rationalize their emotional buying decision. No one complains their favorite book was too long to read … or their favorite film was too long to watch. That’s because they are emotionally engaging.

So, the answer to the question is …

“Copy should be long enough to emotionally engage the prospect and give them enough rational reasons to back their emotional decision to purchase.”

If it’s good enough copy, (the message) going to the right person, (the market) in the right format, (the media), then you are onto a winner.

When you can’t deliver enough quality copy in the media you are using, e.g. radio ad, or press ad, then you write a call-to-action advert which gets people to request the detailed copy or go somewhere they can get hold of it.

- Boyd Butler, Consultant

 

What is your customer’s goal? How do they find your content?

I’ll take a counter point to Boyd.

First thing, not all content will work in all situations, regardless of your copy. You have to look at how the consumer will be engaging with the content, and how they come across it. If you break down content into two buckets, people engage with content to do the following:

  1. Research a purchase
  2. Professional development (Entertainment is a veil we use to make this more palatable)

Inside of both of these, you can then further break it down to [the question]: how do they find the content? This factor determines the odds of your content getting engaged with.

People find content two ways:

  1. They search for it
  2. It is sent to them

For example, if someone is researching a purchase, they are more likely to like a longer form of content. Why? Because they are seeking out information to make an informed decision. This means they are doing a search, and asking to engage with content.

Most of us also require a form to be filled out to access the content. This means there is a negotiation going on with the consumer as well. We are asking them to give up something in exchange for the content. So, there has to be [significant] value on the content for them to give up their email address.

In these situations, a longer, or full, document performs better. At first glance, a larger document appears to have more value than a short document, hence is a better deal for the person. So, they are more likely to engage with it in that situation.

Compare this to content sent via email. The consumer is not in research mode (unless your email is on a drip campaign following up researching activity), and they are in work mode. This means professional development content is more likely to get engaged with.

We are disrupting their day. So, they do not have the time to read a long form piece of content. They need to engage with the content in a short time period. They have to stop their task at hand to read your content. In this scenario, short form content works better.

I suggest the rule of five in these cases. Make sure your content can be digested in under five minutes, and that is clear to the consumer. If you do this, you are increasing your odds of engagement when disrupting their day.

You need to look at when and where your content is going to be engaged with, to make sure you are creating the best content, giving you the best odds of engagement. You also need to combine this with your goals. The goal of content should never be to make someone sales ready. It should be to move them to the next stage in their lifecycle. I have never read a piece of content and said, “OK, I’ll buy it.” Especially not in the B2B world where there is a large amount of research.

The stats back up these claims with the following data:

Stat #1: The more expensive your product, the more research someone must do.

Stat #2: People break research up into stages, and usually perform two to three different batches of research before they reach out to set up demos.

Stat #3: People prefer their content to be under five pages, in general.

This research will be made public in my report published by Pardot coming up in the next month. You can also see me present on this data at the B2B Inspiration Tour.

- Mathew Sweezey, Manager of Marketing Research and Education, Pardot

 

Focus on customer personas

I think it all depends on how you know your customer persona. For example, if you market to women/housewives/24-32/living in Texas, I think long copy of human talk (the one that you have while you are with you friends) will be perfect – especially if you include a chance to add comments (with a plugin like Disqus).

On the other hand, if you market to professional males/19-33/living in New York, then you need a catchy headline with a short copy.

- Ahmed Seddiq, Senior Operation Officer, Corporate Visa Services, Dnata, The Emirates Group

 

Related Resources:

Long Copy vs. Short Copy: How discovering the optimal length of a webpage produced a 220% increase in conversion – Wednesday, May 8, 2013, 4:00 – 4:35 p.m. EDT

Long Copy vs. Short Copy: How our micro-testing increased conversion rate by more than 100%

Content Marketing: Focus on value, not length

Copywriting: Long copy vs. short copy matrix

Share and Enjoy:
  • LinkedIn
  • StumbleUpon
  • Facebook
  • del.icio.us
  • Digg

Optimizing Calls-to-action: 4 questions to ask yourself while writing a CTA

August 17th, 2012 1 comment

“The ask.” That’s what your entire copywriting effort comes down to on your landing page. If you have an effective headline, great copy and compelling images, but you fumble at the two-yard-line – the call-to-action (CTA) – then all of your copywriting efforts are for naught.

So, what is the best way to ask the visitor on a landing page to take action?

“A call-to-action is simply a proposition of the value that will be delivered immediately after the action,” said Paul Cheney, Editorial Analyst, MECLABS. “The more value the prospect perceives in the call-to-action, the more likely the prospect will be to take action.”

To help you communicate that value with your calls-to-action, answer these four questions the next time you write a CTA.

  Read more…

Share and Enjoy:
  • LinkedIn
  • StumbleUpon
  • Facebook
  • del.icio.us
  • Digg

A/B Testing: 3 resources for copywriting and call-to-action optimization

July 18th, 2012 No comments

According to the MarketingSherpa 2011 Landing Page Optimization Benchmark Report (free excerpt at that link), the headline and call-to-action are the most impactful page elements to optimize:

 

“The headline has been repeatedly shown to provide high impact … often, it makes the difference between the visitor reading any content and going for the dreaded “x” button. The call-to-action is not surprisingly twice in the top five — supporting the reason and providing a clear opportunity to act, which are critical to conversion.”

 

Plus, copywriting and call-to-action tests are relatively easy to run, when compared to shopping carts (must get IT involved or perhaps install an entirely new cart), lead forms (must win buy-in from Sales), or homepages (watch out for the branding police). Often, you can make copywriting and call-to-action changes yourself, with no need for design help.

So, to help you formulate test ideas for these high-impact elements of your marketing, here are three free resources from MarketingExperiments …

Read more…

Share and Enjoy:
  • LinkedIn
  • StumbleUpon
  • Facebook
  • del.icio.us
  • Digg

Copywriting Case Study: How Encyclopedia Britannica increased conversion 103%

July 16th, 2012 No comments

In this excerpt from a recent Web clinic, Dr. Flint McGlaughlin, Managing Director and CEO, MECLABS, shares an experiment in which copywriting helped double the conversion rate for a digital subscription offering …

 

 

To learn more about how you can use copywriting to improve your own performance, you can watch the free, full video replay of the “Copywriting on Tight Deadlines: How ordinary marketers are achieving 103% gains with a step-by-step framework” Web clinic.

 

Related Resources:

Blandvertising: How you can overcome writing headlines and copy that don’t say anything

Copywriting: Long copy vs. short copy matrix

Optimizing Copy: The 7 most common copywriting mistakes we see marketers make

Copywriting: 5 common headline errors

Share and Enjoy:
  • LinkedIn
  • StumbleUpon
  • Facebook
  • del.icio.us
  • Digg