This week I launched a limited time and space offer on Blitz Copywriting Reviews. You send in up to 750 words of copy and I give you a tailored review with specific copywriting suggestions, an overall summary and a chance to follow up for Q+A. It’s only available if you book before September 19th and there are currently
108 places left at the time of writing this. I’d love to help you rock your copy. Find out how to get your Blitz Copywriting Review here.
In today’s post I want to showcase 3 quick case studies to illustrate how a copywriter approaches rewriting copy. It’s not just about what ‘sounds / reads’ better. Copywriting is a specific approach to make content more engaging and persuasive using the 15 Elements of Influence.
I’ve taken a couple of samples from past Copywriting Labs I’ve held where I rewrite content of business owners who have submitted their content for the hot seat.
#1 Headline and tagline re-writes
First up we have a website service offered by Cathy Goodwin. The offer is pretty solid. Cathy works with a team to build your website, but then Cathy herself also writes the content for you. You don’t just get a framework for your business website, you get it all ready to go out of the box, and in just a few weeks.
The original headline for the offer was:
Are you too close to your product to sell it? (Why changes were made)
Despite most people saying that their biggest challenge is not wanting to be pushy when writing copy, in my experience, most people greatly undersell themselves. Let’s take Cathy’s offer for example. Going through the sale page I discovered that a customer will receive the following:
- All pages written by a copywriter
- Cathy also has HTML / CSS / Photoshop skills
- Complete website build for service professionals
- Delivered in 2-6 weeks
- Provided by a team of experts
- Sites include professional copy
- Options for customisation
- Starting at $1,297
As a copywriter, when I read and research a client’s product or business I’m looking for the golden nuggets that will get a customer’s attention. The pieces I highlighted above in red are the ones that would be attractive to a service professional who is frustrated about having no / a poor website.
A strong headline should be specific and show the reader what they can expect, without giving everything away. Cathy wanted to use curiosity in her original headline, which is why she opted for the “surprisingly simple” phrase. This is a phrase that can work very well but can be tricky to do. In this case, Cathy would be better front-loading her sales page with the specific value a customer would receive.
The rewritten headline
As a result, on the Copywriting Lab I offered Cathy this headline for her to use / tweak / work with:
Get a Beautifully-Built, Persuasively-Written Website for Your Service Business (in Just 2-6 Weeks)
Designed and built by copywriting and marketing experts, your new website is a client-attraction machine – right out of the box
What is the headline doing?
This headline deliberately communicates in a short possible amount of time the following details:
- Who the target market is (service professionals)
- You can get a beautifully designed website
- All your copy will be written (with a marketing focus)
- It takes a short amount of time to deliver
- It’s put together by experts whose focus is in attracting clients
- It works as soon as you get it
All of that in just a headline and tagline.
Look at a headline for your product or service. Does it include the key selling points of your offer? Does it identify the target market directly or indirectly? How many selling points are there?
Want help beefing up your sales page headline (and the rest of the copy)? Book in for a Blitz Review.
#2 About page rewrite
Another Copywriting Lab focused on About Pages. It was a popular one because writing your own About Page is notoriously difficult. It can feel uncomfortable and difficult to know how much to share, how much personality to put in, and above all else, how to sell what you do.
One submission for a Hot Seat came from a Dr Jenny Streit-Horn, a counsellor. The About Page I used in the lab was as follows (the red boxes are ones I put there to illustrate the different sections I walked through):
Does your copy build trust and confidence?
I liked a lot about this About Page from the design, to using a map and the specific details of who Jenny works with. I wanted to focus the rewrite on this particular part of her About Page:
Dr. Streit-Horn is good at meeting clients where they are in terms of readiness for change and tailoring psychotherapy treatment to their specific needs. She strives for a collaborative relationship in which she provides information, encouragement, and support so that clients can make the changes they wish to make.
The copy is positive, but the tone feels a little distant. It would be a great professional industry bio for her peers, or if she were appearing at a conference, but it could work harder to reach the reader directly.
Now, if Dr. Streit-Horn takes referrals from a 3rd party, such as doctors, this formal approach would be suitable. If however, this was a website where end clients visit and decide whether to book a session, I would make changes to connect more directly with the reader. This is especially important if your client is vulnerable or sensitive. If you’re a coach or counsellor, you want to show that you can be trusted and that you care.
The rewritten About Page
I provided this rewrite based on the above goals:
Dr. Streit-Horn works with you at your own pace. All treatment and sessions are tailored to what you need, the support you want and where you are on your journey. Whether you want to take small steps or achieve big changes in your life, Dr. Streit-Horn provides a safe and collaborative relationship with information, encouragement and support.
The biggest changes are using the word ‘you’ to address the reader directly, and using a more direct sentence structure. For example instead of: “meeting clients where they are in terms of readiness” we now have “tailored to what you need, the support you want and where you are on your journey.”
Does your About Page work hard to sell you and your service?
Your About Page provides an opportunity to reveal more of your personality but also to still persuade the reader to engage with your offer. Have a look at your About Page. Does it sound like you? Are you proud to refer people to it or so you feel like it’s not quite right? If so, why not sign up for a Blitz Review? 😉
#3 Rewriting tweets for more engagement
Finally, in the last Copywriting Lab we looked at how to write multiple magnetic tweets. If you’ve got one thing to promote, how can you write a number of different tweets without sounding like a broken record?
We had this great Hot Seat submission from Rachelle Strauss:
Rachelle wanted to promote the Zero Waste Week initiative, something she is passionate about. For one week people are encouraged to reuse and recycle to promote awareness of what we can do to reduce our waste.
Are you more into your thing than your reader?
The challenge here is that Rachelle is so passionate about reducing waste, her tweets focused on that passion. This isn’t a bad thing if you’re appealing to people who already share your enthusiasm, but if you’re trying to get new people on board, you may have to try a different tactic. Her current tweets included:
- Isn’t it time to stop wasting stuff? I think so! Join this year’s big #zerowasteweek event
- I’m part of the solution! Are you? Sign up to the #zerowasteweek event
- 7-13th September is #zerowasteweek Sign up and pledge!
- Have YOU pledged to reduce landfill waste in this year’s #zerowaste week? Sign up now
- Join us and be a #zerowasteweek Zero Hero!
- Don’t be a waster. Sign up for #zerowasteweek
I like how Rachelle is addressing the reader directly and the change I suggested was to appeal to the self-interests of the reader (which may not be about reducing waste)
Rewritten tweets – focus on reader interests
I wrote these Tweets for Rachelle to use based on 5 areas of self interest:
- What is something my reader wants? (Help your reader out)
- What mistakes might they want to avoid? (How can I give them a warning)
- Engaging them in conversation (asking for an opinion)
- What is a problem they’d like to solve
- How can I tease their curiosity?
The result was these 9 tweets:
- Help your reader out
- How to make meals (and £) go further (try it for a week and you’ll never go back)
- Want to go shop but waiting for payday? Find surprising ‘new’ treats (that you already own)
- Give them a warning
- Why ‘wasteful’ businesses are falling behind the competition
- 10 things we all do (that put a hole in your wallet every day)
- Ask for (or offer) an opinion
- What’s the best dish you’ve made from leftovers?
- Which of these upcycled gifts would be best for a birthday present for mum?
- Solve a problem
- Drowning in clutter? How to reclaim your space (and your sanity)
- Not sure if those leftovers are safe to eat? Here’s a guide on what to keep (and what to bin – you’d be surprised)
- Give them a teaser…
- Think you’re a pretty good eco-warrior? See if you know all 12 recycling tips for the home.
Are you writing for your reader’s passion (or yours)
Does your copy focus on what your reader wants and is interested in or is it more aligned with your own passions and concerns? It’s usually pretty simple to fix, it just takes a bit of a step back and fresh pair of eyes. If you’ve got a piece of copy that doesn’t seem to be making an impact, you might need to readjust your focus, and you know what can help with that? A Blitz Copywriting Review.
Want to experience your own copywriting before and after?
As I mentioned, if you book between the 11th-19th September you can get a Blitz Copywriting Review to improve your copy. Once you book you’ll be taken to a questionnaire, get instructions for submitting your content and will get your review by September 29th.
Read more about getting your Blitz Copywriting Review here.