You may know him or simply know of him, but you’ve probably seen Joseph Sugarman’s work if you’re a copywriter. With the power of his pen, Sugarman started a mail-order business, JS&A Group, and had an impressive number of marketing innovations and successes including:
- Enticing people to spend hours reading his copy even though they weren’t interested in the product because he offered $10 off for every spelling error they found, which he purposefully included.
- Using a single magazine ad to sell a used airplane valued at $190,000 for $240,000.
- He pioneered the concept of using toll-free phone numbers for over-the-phone credit card orders before credit cards were accepted over the phone by everyone else.
Sugarman, author of The Adweek Copywriting Handbook, shows how you can improve your copywriting skills by describing his own hilarious, long-copy approach to copywriting and out-of-the-box thinking in direct sales and marketing. In case you haven’t read the book, or are awaiting your Amazon copy to arrive in the mail, start improving your writing with the following steps:
- Become an expert — You must know your product or service if you’re going to be able to effectively sell it. Research your subject and learn everything you can about it in order to find the right angle for introducing it to your target audience.
- Know your customers — Without the proper understanding of your target audience and how they think, you can’t speak their language and engage them with an ad or call to action. Knowing your audience can help you overcome any purchasing hurdles by effectively communicating the right benefits to sell the product.
- Write quickly — Rewriting is the secret to any kind of writing. Start by getting the copy onto the page and then take the time to think about it, re-read it, and write it again. Let your ideas flow in the first copy and then begin to edit, refining your writing to the right combination of emotional and creative appeal for your audience.
Get the first line read — Make your first line enticing and engaging with the design, but don’t let it be hidden. Design can often overshadow the copy of your ad if you let it. Ensure your audience can see the first line and that it matches with your design elements, but keep in mind that readers can be distracted from the main point if there is too much going on in the ad.
- Frame effectively — Creating the right frame through which your target audience views your product or service is a vital step in writing. When it comes to selling online or through an ad, your frame is determined by your company’s website style and the design. Make sure all the design factors work well with your copy or they may compete and fall flat on your audience.
- Create a slippery slide — Your copy should be as long as it needs to be for whatever you’re selling. If people are interested in the product, they’ll read as much as possible about it on your ad. If there is no interest, the copy won’t get read. Creating a slippery slide of copy that compels people to keep reading involves attracting them and enticing them through to the end.
- Target emotions — People buy primarily based on emotions and how your product or service ad makes them feel. Yes, they initially want the product, but your ad copy can help them justify why they need it. Start by targeting your customers’ emotions and then use the features and benefits to justify why they should buy it. And keep it engaging.
Ready to get your marketing copy on track and a strategy in place to attract the right leads to your business? Contact AGENCY H Inbound today for a free marketing assessment.