Many website marketers make the mistake of thinking solely about SEO. While search engine optimization is important, it comes secondary to writing for your customers.
After all, the point of your website is not to get rankings, it is to sell a product or service, or to get the visitor to take some type of action.
Really, SEO and writing for your customers go hand in hand.
Since the Google Panda update, website rankings are judged as much on how relevant your content is rather than on keywords and links alone.
The more information you provide to your customers, the better your rankings will be, and the higher your conversion rate of visitor to customer.
Great copywriting takes skill, and not everyone has it.
There are some basic elements to good copywriting that everyone can understand. If you get these down, you can get some great content that Google and your visitors will enjoy.
Step 1: Use problem and solution format
The first thing you want to do is decide what you are trying to convey with your message.
The best way to get people to read your content is to present a problem and give a solution. Keep it interesting and informative, as well as having a point to the piece other than simply trying to sell them something.
Step 2: Know everything about your audience
Next, think about your audience. What is it that they need to know? What are their interests? What is their demographic?
You have to know what your readers are interested in so that you can incorporate that into your content.
Metaphors are a great way to keep content fresh and interesting, but you have to know your audience well enough to know which metaphors to use.
Step 3: Know what keywords they use
You have to have relevant information for your customers using words and phrases that they are likely to search for.
Choose just a few to start out with, and build topics around those keywords. When writing your content, don’t focus on the keywords.
If that is your topic, the keywords will flow naturally throughout.
Step 4: Write a killer headline
Once you have that down and you know what you are going to write and how you are going to write it, you have to have a good headline.
No, you have to have an amazing headline. Not only will your headline be used to index your site, you have to be able to catch the reader’s attention.
Give them a headline that will ensure they start reading the text. Then make the first paragraph make them want more, so that they will read the entire piece.
Your headline must be catchy and intriguing, while also conveying clearly what the piece is about.
Headlines can be one of the trickiest parts of writing for your customers. It is what gets them to click that link and start reading.
The most common headline preference is numbered lists, such as “Top 10 Ways to Write for Your Customers.” The second most preferred headline is addressed to the reader themselves.
Choosing topics can be difficult as well. Your topic must be relevant to your website, and what you are offering.
At the same time, it must be entertaining and interesting, while still being informative. It should present a problem and a solution, hopefully with the solution being your product or service.
It can also offer tips and solutions for common problems relating to your industry that don’t necessary require your particular product.
Step 5: Write in active voice
To keep readers engaged, use active voice. This means that you use action verbs rather than passive prepositional phrases.
For example, instead of saying that a product may take the stain out of a rug, say that it can take the stain out. Instead of saying “Our company has many products that have gotten awards,” say “Our company was given awards for these products.”
Active versus passive voice is a difficult skill to master, but one that is absolutely necessary for good copywriting.
Creating content for customers is not necessarily to sell them on your product or service.
It should also be about building trust and familiarity with your readers.
The more information you give and the more problems you can help them solve, the more trustworthy you become.
They begin to see you as an expert in your field, and you are more likely to win their business.
There is an ultimate goal to all copywriting, and that is to take action of some sort.
You might want your visitors to subscribe to an email list, request services, or purchase a product.
Whatever the main purpose of your content is, you want to make sure that you offer a call to action somewhere toward the end of the piece.
Additionally, you can also make a mild call to action somewhere in the body.