At DMA, we are committed to being lifelong learners and improving the way we serve the fresh produce industry. We’ve taken some time to sharpen our skills at copywriting to refresh our knowledge on connecting with our audiences, getting creative with our copy, and using different literary techniques to make an impact.
Here are some of the most impactful takeaways we wanted to share!
Lessons from a Copywriter
Start by Determining Your Audience
It may sound simple, but knowing WHO you are writing for is incredibly important. You can create the best copy in the world but if you aren’t writing to the right people, or your hero, who is going to care? Try working through these questions to help narrow down whom you are writing for:
- Get Specific - Let’s say your target audience is mothers. How old are these mothers? How old are their children? What is their level of education and income? What type of neighborhoods do they live in? Based on this information, you can decide the tone of voice that will guide your copy.
- What Makes Them a Potential Customer - Are there similar problems this audience faces? Is your product or service affordable for them? What is the benefit that they will receive? When you answer these questions, you can determine the main point of your copy.
- Find Out More - What other types of products or services do they buy? When is the best or worst time to approach them? How urgently do they need your product? What other types of interests do they have? Armed with this information, you can determine the most appropriate platform to reach your audience.
Identify What Motivates Your Audience
After you identify your audience, start to connect to them on a psychological level by tailoring your copy to what motivates them. Try working through the following categories to identify motivators and emotions of your audience:
- Demographics - what objective information can you identify about your audience? Income level, marital status, gender, education level, etc.
- Geodemographics - regions or neighborhoods that share common demographics
- Cohort Analysis - sociological theory that members of the same generation share values and thoughts, that are shaped by the times they grew up during
- Psychographics - values, lifestyle choices and attitudes
Craft Copy for the Unconscious Mind
Think of your customer’s mind like an iceberg. They have a conscious mind and unconscious mind. The conscious mind, the tip of the iceberg that is above water, is always influenced by outside factors leading to purchase decisions. The unconscious mind, the HUGE part of the iceberg that is submerged under water, is where you need to reach your audience.
So, how do you reach this part of the customer’s mind? Buying decisions are based on feelings and rationalized by facts. Appeal to your customer with a combination of rational and emotional attractors. For example, if you are selling perfume you can appeal rationally by writing copy about the looks (it’s pleasing to the eye) or indulgence (you only live once, so why not live well?). You can use emotional factors in tandem with your rational factors, including Sensation (appeals to the senses) or Allurement (attraction).
Remember, it’s okay to break grammar rules - sometimes
So what grammar rules should you break, and when? If you’d like to keep your copy conversational, try using sentence fragments. No kidding. Effective, right? And you can also start a sentence with a conjunction - it’ll help your reader follow your train of thought just like they would if you were speaking to them in person.
If you’re writing for a trade audience, you can still deviate from the traditional writing styles to create effective copy. Instead of using industry jargon to sound knowledgeable, use everyday words. Your audience will appreciate how easy it is to understand the point you’re communicating. Just remember to always use an active voice in your writing and try using bullet points whenever possible. You can also use sub headers (like the ones in this blog post) to break bigger thoughts into digestible bits of information. It’s much easier to read and comprehend quickly.
For most marketers, great copy is the bread and butter of what we do. Copywriting enables us to tell our brands’ stories, through social media, email marketing, website copy, and more. We want to know what you think! Tweet us at @TheCoreBlog or email us at contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.