(And just to be clear—copywriting is writing promotional materials—it has nothing to do with protecting your intellectual property. Direct response copywriting is copy that persuades people to take some sort of action. You’ve probably seen this copy in one of those long sales letters online, where you scroll down forever looking for a buy button, or in lengthy emails telling you to “click here.”)
If you know what I’m talking about right now, you probably don’t love “that kind” of copy.
Yet everyone tells you that you need it if you want to make “real” money—especially if you want to make money online while you sleep, waking up to thousands of dollars in your bank account. (Ah, yes, like a magic Internet Fairy who comes in the night, and poof! Instead of leaving a dollar under your pillow like her cousin, the Tooth Fairy, you get thousands, right in the bank. )
So, what do you do? Make money, but feel slime-y and sales-y with the copy you’re using? Or focus on copy that is at least aligned with your core values, but that may not “work” to make you the big bucks?
Well, I’m here today to say that you can do both. It IS possible to write copy that attracts, inspires, and invites your ideal clients to work with you, so you make money AND feel good doing it.
And here are three simple steps to get you started.
1. Know your ideal clients.
You see, target markets and niches are more about the external—a person’s demographics—think age, marital status, income status, geography, etc. Ideal clients are about the internal—what drives them, what gets them up in the morning, what keeps them awake at night … what their core values are.
And if you base your business and your marketing around that, you’re going to attract the perfect clients into your business—the ones who you love to work with and who love working with you. (Doesn’t that feel fabulous?)
Now. if you haven’t done this before, I really encourage you to complete the following exercise: Creating Your Ideal Client Avatar
Spend some time getting to know your ideal client. It doesn’t matter if he/she is real or in your head; either way, it’s a big help to go through this process.
Start by writing out a detailed description of that person. Be as complete as possible. Then, I want you to post it somewhere close to you, so that every time you sit down to write copy, you see your ideal client.
You may want to add a picture as well, so you can really “see” your ideal client as you write.
Now, once you have a clear and thorough understanding of your ideal client, move on to the second key.
2. Pretend you’re writing a letter to a friend, NOT marketing copy.
If your friend came to you and told you about a problem she had, and you KNEW you had the perfect solution and wanted to help by writing her a letter, how would you craft it? You would be passionate, right? And you would probably also be very comfortable asking her to take action, because you know in your heart that, if she does, her life will change.
Stop writing marketing copy, and instead start crafting love letters to your ideal clients. That’s the key to attracting more perfect clients.
Well, I want you to bring that same passion into writing your marketing copy. You care about your ideal client, right? So you ARE writing to a friend—a friend who has a problem you can solve. And you know how wonderful your friend’s life will be once she’s solved the problem, which makes you eager to do it.
That’s the place to come from when you write. And when you do, all the hype-y and sales-y stuff melts away.
3. Focus on their transformation.
Now, you’ve probably heard the “write benefits, not features” advice, and it’s true—I do want you to do that. But even more than that, I want you to focus on the transformation: how much your ideal clients’ lives will be transformed once they’ve bought your products and services.
As much as possible, craft your copy from a place of “what’s in it for them”—how their lives will change, why yours is the solution for them, and how it will help them. That’s how you want to structure your language.
If you focus your copy with that “you” instead of “I” focus (in fact, you should have a 2:1 or even a 3:1 ratio of “you” to “I”), and how your product or service will transform your ideal client, the people you are meant to serve will know you’re the solution they’ve been looking for, and they’ll be that much more excited to work with you.
If you’d like to dig into this topic more deeply, you may want to check out my two Love-Based Copywriting books.