Business owners often wonder: what exactly does a copywriter do? There’s no secret to it. The copywriter’s job is to persuade your readers to take a desired action.
The copywriter we speak of here might be you (the business owner), a staff copywriter, or a freelancer that you have hired.
The desired action may be to buy your product or invest in your service offering; however it may also be to download a free report or software application and provide their name and email address in exchange. Whatever the offer, the copywriter gives the the prospect or prior customer two or more options and asks them to choose.
What is really going on here? We might sum it up as: persuasion. Be aware that this “persuasion” is simply not what people often think. It is easy to assume that copywriters employ “tricks” to coax people out of their money. Consider looking at it this way instead: comptent and ethical copywriters utilize copywriting techniques for the purpose of convincing the reader to act in their own best interest… to do what they would anyway if they “had all the facts”.
What kinds of actions do we wish to persuade our readers to take?
The most basic action, on that requires the least amount of skill, is to simply to persuade another to take some action indicating their interest in a subject. That action might be as innocuous as reading an article. Or it may be downloading a free report or software program.
Next in difficulty would be convincing that same person to provide their email address in order to get the freebie. Web surfers today are hesistant to give strangers their email address online. The good news, if you can get people to do this, it usually tells you three different things. First, it shows you did a good job in targeting the right audience for your freebiew. Second, it tells you that you are speaking in their language. Third, it finally indicates that you are offering an item that they deem valuable.
You might rightly imagine that to persuade that same prospect to spend money is on another level of difficulty. And you would be correct. Ultimately, though, we are in business to make sale. In crafting a sales letter, the copywriter is merely presenting one type of a sales presentation.
The basic process is this: describe what is being offered, the benefits derived from the service or product, provide answers to the most common objections prospects have, and tell them how to buy. Throughout the entire process, the writer must use terminology familiar to the prospect and also remove any “speed bumps” (unnecessary or poor-worded phrases which will cause the reader to disbelieve what you are saying or even stop reading).
Smart marketers know that persuasion does not end when the buying decision is made. Not at all. The prospect must now be persuaded to type in their credit card information and then to confirm the order. After the order is made, customers commonly experience what is known as “buyer’s remorse” and so experienced marketers employ ethical tactics to show that the customer made the right decision.
The copywriter’s job is an essential one today. As a business owner, you may decide to write the copy yourself, or you may choose to hire a writer who specializes in writing copy for clients.