When I got started with online marketing, one question often came up at conferences and informal conversations: “What’s the single most important thing I need to learn in order to be successful?”
If you talk to any Online Gurus, Famous Names, or Internet Millionaires, they’ll freely reveal the answer. They will tell you that visitors make buying decisions based on the words on your website. They will share stories of how you will benefit when you create compelling headlines, beefy bullets, and irresistible hooks.
What most people don’t realize is that once you study copywriting, you have a new all-purpose business tool…a “secret sauce” you can use to add flavor in all your marketing activities.
So you get to be sneaky.
You will find ways to use your skills even when you aren’t working on marketing actions typically associated with copywriting, such as your website or brochure.
You can think of copywriting as “the sneaky strategy” because most of your audience won’t realize you’re using it.
Sneaky copywriting place #1: Once I belonged to an organization that offered an annual showcase for members to present themselves. The catch was, you had to send an application, describing what you’d talk about and why you should be one of the three featured speakers.
I’d never written a proposal like this one, but I figured I’d just use my copywriting experience to promote value, even though I was less experienced than my competitors.
It worked. I got to be one of those speakers, ahead of people who’d been in the group a lot longer.
By the way, this also works for gaining admission to groups and submitting yourself for an award. You’re selling yourself, right?
Sneaky copywriting place #2: When you’re invited to be an interview guest, you will need to prepare a list of questions, a summary of your topic and a brief biography.
Sounds simple, doesn’t it? In fact, each element calls for copywriting. Your questions need to be as compelling as headlines. Your bio needs to showcase your expertise – without a hint of boasting. Your interviewer needs to be sure you won’t sound like a used car sales stereotype.
Sneaky copywriting place #3: When you create an information product or write a book, you can use copywriting to create mouth-watering title and chapter headings. They’ll help you reach your target market in the same way your copywriting headlines draw readers into your story.
Additionally, every chapter needs hooks – stories or ideas that grab the reader and won’t let go. It’s usually the opening paragraph of a sales letter, but also the opening of a chapter or even the book itself.
One of my favorite opening lines comes from a murder mystery, The Rosewood Casket by Sharyn McCrumb:
“Dying cost nothing and could be done alone; otherwise Randall Stargill might have lived forever.”
Many authors skip this step, but it’s important, particularly for kindle books. When readers click on “Look inside,” they’ll see chapter headings – and some hooks too.
You don’t have to become a master copywriter or even a professional copywriter to benefit from these skills. In fact, your success will be less about the wordsmithing than about the copywriting mindset: asking the “what’s in it for me” question, getting into the conversation in your client’s mind, and telling a purposeful story.
Once you adapt this mindset, you’ll likely find yourself achieving gains in many areas of marketing, with considerably more enjoyment and considerably less effort.
If you’d like to learn more about copywriting, check out my course on Copywriting With Stories. We introduce stories directly into the copywriting process – not as an add-on. Use coupon code “copypro” to save $20 on the price.
And grab your free download – 7 Copywriting Tips To JumpStart Your Sales.