Have you ever gone to a website, started reading, and realized your eyes are glazing over? You might even think, “Gee, I really ought to be reading this page. But…” And you’re gone before you can figure out what’s wrong.
The truth is, you’ve just been exposed to an example of wimpy copy. Anybody can push it around. Competitors will kick sand in its face. There’s no personality, appeal or brand coming through.
Two reasons online business owners get stuck with wimpy copy
Reason #1: Service professionals often are reluctant to brag about themselves. They’re afraid they’ll sound sales-y. So they settle for blah cookie-cutter sites that tiptoe around the web…so softly nobody notices they’re there.
Reason #2: New or inexperienced copywriters often apply the same standard phrases they’ve learned…over and over again. It’s like using paint right from the can in a standard color instead of blending to get just the right mix. The basics are okay but for a truly powerful effect, you need to take an extra step.
2 Techniques to Build Muscle
In the gym you’d lose the wimp factor with crunches, push-ups and weight training. Your online marketing stops slithering like a wet noodle when you use strong action verbs and tell stories.
Use action verbs
Action verbs include “Create,” “Recognize,” and “Discover. But if you really want to involve your readers, look for even stronger verbs, like “Crush,” “Destroy,” and “Surprise.” One of the most powerful pieces of copy I’ve ever read uses “Slaughter,” “Decimate,” “Force,” and “Trigger.” Wow…don’t you feel energized just reading those verbs?
Of course if your brand leans more to ying than yang, you’ll need a different set of action words. Try “Explain,” “Complement,” “Encourage,” “Commit,” and “Simplify.”
Stay away from the worst examples of limp content: “be” and “have.” Readers skim over sentences beginning “There are…” or “This is…” without even paying attention to what’s being said.
Your audience pays attention when you say, “Here’s a good story to illustrate what I just said.” You aren’t limited to your origin story. My storytelling course shows you how to write the top 4 story categories.
The key is to demonstrate your points vividly so your story comes alive before the reader’s eye (or the listener’s ear).
You could say, “Bruce was struggling to get a new job,” but that’s pretty abstract.
How about this:
“Bruce had been sending out resumes for what seemed like a lifetime …six months. Most of the time he didn’t even get a generic “Sorry but” response. His bank account had gone down to three figures while his rent appeared in a very scary four. Would he have to borrow from his parents again and risk ending up on Judge Judy when they demanded repayment? Should he tell his girlfriend he was too broke to think about getting married until they were both old enough to be grandparents?”
How will we get Bruce out of this? That’s what the reader wants to know … and you, the business owner, have the power to save Bruce’s butt and bank account. You just have to tell your audience.
Get some feedback on your own content (and some muscle-building exercises, customized to you and your business) when you sign up for the Copywriting Consultation. It’s like a special session with your personal trainer. You’ll get more energy for your business and walk away with the ultimate workout to bring you the results you deserve and desire. Click here to learn more.
Get some feedback on your own content (and some muscle-building exercises, customized to you and your business) when you sign up for the Copywriting Consultation. And discover how easily you can develop a portfolio of your own stories to engage, inspire and energize your content: “Build your brand, one story at a time.”