OK, do you have time today to read a magazine or even to clean your sock drawer? Great, then you have time to add magnetic copy to your website to dramatically improve its performance!
How, you ask?
Simple, just follow these five steps, and you’ll be on your way to more magical, magnificent, magnetic copy:
1. Suprise ‘Em!
Too many websites are filled with corporate technobabble and just a lot of boring text about the company. It feels as if a robot spit out the language, and you as a site visitor already know what’s coming next with every new sentence.
Instead of the same old same old, surprise your site visitors. They expect ABC. Give ’em XYZ instead.
For example, with our own website at DigitalMarketingNOW.com, the very first copy that a new visitor sees is NOT: “We are a digital marketing and design firm. We focus on results, ensuring that you maximize your marketing ROI. Blah. Blah. Blah. Blah. Blah.”
Rather, we hit you with, “Pardon my French, but this is @#$*% HOT!!!! …everything is awesome.” This is an actual client quote. Would you ever expect a website to START with this? Heck no! And we can tell you that we’ve received more positive feedback on that one line alone than Lady Gaga has outfits.
Try shakin’ things up a bit, and see what works best for your website.
2. Transform Your Headlines!
When writing a headline, whether for a blog post, article, press release or otherwise, make sure the headline is ridiculously compelling. Sure, we could have written this post’s headline as “How to Improve Your Website Copy.” However, that’s not exactly compelling and you probably would have ignored it. Let’s face it, you can’t bore someone into doing something.
Instead, try to spice up your headlines. It’s the key to getting someone to read your materials. With this post, by using the phrase “Magnetic Copy” and by adding “…in 30 Minutes or Less,” the blog post becomes intriguing (even if the actual post might totally and absolutely stink).
Effective techniques for spicing up a headline include:
- Numbered lists (e.g., “15 Tips for Crazy Good Facebook Marketing“)
- Time elements (e.g., “Add Magnetic Copy to Your Website in 30 Minutes or Less”)
- Funny twists (e.g., “The Monty Python Guide to Web Design”)
3. Tell ‘Em a Story!
When we were tiny tots, our parents read book after book to us. And we just couldn’t get enough. The hunger for stories is ingrained in us.
So give ’em what they hunger for. Give ’em stories.
Instead of explaining how you do things in intricate detail, try explaining through customer stories, employee stories, or similar stories that effectively make your point. Stories make topics come alive for us. They help to make information real and meaningful. And that’s the key: injecting meaning into information.
For example, imagine you’re on an office management consultancy website. And imagine you read through a few paragraphs of text about three ways that the consultancy could save your business money.
Now, imagine if you instead read about how that same company helped Shelly, the new office manager at a large company. And how Shelly struggled to get taken seriously by anyone in the building during a corporate “saving money” initiative. And how the consultancy instructed Shelly to change their trash removal service from daily to every other day, to place recycling bins on every floor that would be picked up free by a local non-profit, and to apply energy control devices on each outlet. And how through the process, Shelly’s actions saved the company more than $1 million annually. And how because of this, she was promoted to innovation director, given an office with a great view, and tasked with teaching thousands of people how to think. Now, that would be a bit more interesting, right?
4. Keep it Quick!
Although you may want to tell everyone who stops by your website absolutely every single detail about your products or services, try giving them a shorter version. Try giving them the main benefits. Try giving them just the highlights. Try teasing them a bit.
Keep paragraphs short. Your site visitors are not looking for 20-sentence blocks of text. They will not read them. Check your web analytics data for proof.
Keep sentences short. Instead of those five commas in your endless sentence, how about scaling back your ambitions? Try a few short sentences. It will make your point much more effectively, and someone will actually read through to the end.
5. Don’t Hedge! Bet the Farm!
Be careful about trying to appeal to everyone. Sometimes by trying to appeal to everyone, we actually appeal to no one. Don’t hedge in your writing by being wishy-washy.
Instead of writing “Google might be considered to be more than a search engine,” how about “Google was once a simple search engine. However, it is now an ecosystem that is expanding into new territories with a seemingly voracious appetite.”
Ahh, now doesn’t that feel better? And it feels better because your mind received more nutrition. It’s your job as a writer to provide a good experience while on your site. Decisive language helps the reader have a better experience.
* * *
So, instead of organizing that messy sock drawer, try spending 30 minutes today making a few changes to the copy in your website. The performance improvement in your site metrics, incoming leads and sales will be worth the effort. (Your socks can wait til tomorrow…)