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11 killer copywriting techniques

June 12, 2020 by Randall Craig

Here’s a question you don’t get asked every day: how much do you really know about writing?  And more particularly, the craft of copywriting?  Unless you do this for a living or had extensive training , the answer is likely not very much. Yet no matter your particular role or responsibilities, copywriting is an exceptionally important skill: it educates, convinces, connects – and creates impact.

Here are 11 simple ideas that can help you create that impact:

  1. Voice:  Skip the passive (“Neglected fee payments will cause access to be lost”), and use the active voice: “If you neglect paying your fees, you will lose access.” Then choose how you want to be perceived: formal vs informal, younger vs older, corporate vs personified, and so on. Which is best depends on your goal.
  2. Alliteration:  Connecting Community to Commitment is the only way to drive Social Media ROI.
  3. Repetition:  Ten Tips and Ten Tricks.  (Note that this also uses alliteration.)
  4. Rhyme:  No Wine before its Time.
  5. Meter:  This is the way, to sales and profit.  This refers to the timing of the passage:  imagine a metronome ticking behind the italicized words.
  6. Metaphor, Simile, and Symbolism: Imbues the emotional power of a well-known concept into your writing.  The foundation of knowledge is built through hard work (Knowledge in terms of building construction.)  Our ideatrust Digital Knowledge Vault contains 100s of digital marketing resources. (Connection to a valuable bank vault)
  7. Contrast:  Social Media is either a complete waste of time, or the most important plank of your PR strategy.
  8. Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt:  Without addressing these three key areas of risk, your organization may find itself publicly embarrassed – or legally liable.
  9. Soundbite:  Marketing automation connects community to commitment. This is a sentence that crystallizes an entire concept, and is easily repeatable.
  10. Testimonial: This is a  bona fide third party validation of your capabilities.  While you can’t write your own testimonials, the power of copywriting shines through when you receive an exceptional one.  Contrast “He is hardworking – would hire him in a minute” compared to this one (from my LinkedIn profile):  “Randall is gifted in seeing things from both the 50,000 foot level and sea level at the same time, and snatching — seemingly from thin air — the one piece of the puzzle that will make the entire strategy work.”
  11. Sidebars:  This is less about the written word than the placement of it.  A sidebar is a way to shoe-horn related information into an article, without losing the article’s focus. Sidebars can be used for just about anything: testimonials, order forms, technical descriptions, mini-case studies, how-to’s, etc

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