Copywriting Errors: The Not-So-Fantastic 4

copyCopywriting comes in all shapes and sizes, but most copywriters want to successfully relay similar messages. As long as the reader successfully receives the message or promotion you’re trying to relay, then the copywriting job is well done.

Unfortunately, even the best writers can create bad copy.

Copywriting requires an edge of creativity that must be found before releasing your work into the world. Making copywriting errors is more common than not because we simply get caught up in promoting ourselves that we lose interest of the audience. While writing a copy may require a few attempts, it’s important to review your copy so the top four errors aren’t made.

Copy Set-up

This aspect of copywriting often gets ignored because it doesn’t seem as important as it truly is. Getting your point across is the key point in your copy, but doing it tactfully is what will catch the attention of the reader. The copy should not be too lengthy for the reader. Though they may read the document entirely, the possibility of losing their attention mid-article is high and once they’re finished, they may have forgotten the goal of the message entirely.

Bullet points are your friends! Keeping items listed by bullets or numbers can help readers get through the article easily and quickly.

“Buying our product can save you!” Buying what product? Save you from what? Why is this company requiring you to put so much thought into their advertisement?

Copywriting should be specific but still to the point. You can be straight-forward with your promotion without making vague statements that confuse your audience.

Entertain the Reader

Entertaining the reader doesn’t mean get too crazy and go off the wall. In fact, attempting to be entertaining can lead you in the wrong direction and lose focus, so make sure to maintain your point.

  1. Invoke emotion! Entertainment does not necessarily correlate with laughter. Invoking any emotion in your audience can make it easier for them to relate or feel a personal need for your product.
  2. Again, even the best writers can create a bad copy. Writing a copy has nothing to do with following the book. While correct grammar and spelling is an obvious necessity, thinking outside of the box can capture the attention of anyone.

You’re Selling What?

Keep your copy informative. Nobody wants to see or read an advertisement or copy that is so confusing and lacks information that is clear about what product or service is being offered. If your readers are required to complete a survey, sign up for a newsletter or fill out a contact form, make sure to give clear directions on the next step.

If the checkout option wasn’t directly next to your ‘add to cart’ option, chances are, you’d never check out. You would shop all day long and then forget to actually purchase the items you saved for later.

Remember, you’re writing a copy, not your memoirs. It’s okay to tell a story that is short and to the point. Targeted readers always enjoy a little background information, but they don’t need your elementary school experiences. While a back story can be touching and help sell the product, sort through the details and write a sentence or two on what’s relevant and can strike up emotion.

Headlines

Do you walk up to a stranger you aren’t attracted to and ask them out on a date? The harsh, but honest truth, is no.

Of course, we’re taught not to judge a book by its cover but when it comes to a headline, sometimes that’s all we have to base anything on. A headline can make or break a copy because if it doesn’t grab the attention of the reader, they will not click on it to read further. Several ways to create a successful headline are:

  • Staying short but sweet; stories with long headlines can get skipped because all of the information has already been read in the headline!
  • Explain what the reader is receiving if they read your article or copy.
  • Format the headline correctly: ask a question or state the action clearly.

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