I don’t know about you, but when it comes to hunting down information about my favorite subjects online, there’s nothing that leaves a bad taste in my mouth more than phony web copy that’s obviously been designed to pull me in to a specific website.
I use the word “designed” very purposefully here, because for the most part such articles can’t really be considered “writing”… not in the traditional sense, anyway, and not in the way that quality copywriting should be executed. It seems the more I web surf, the more blogs and articles I stumble across that are nothing more than keyword-stuffed text blocks with little to say – a sorry excuse for SEO copywriting, to be sure, and shoddily composed “love letters” aimed at selling me some unrelated product I don’t want.
There are so many of these types of articles out there, it’s sometimes tough to know whether you’re reading the real thing or being suckered in by a poorly cloaked hard sell. You can usually spot the genuine article (pun intended) straight away, because they’re simply better written. Whether or not these blogs are owned by business owners with innate writing abilities, or whether they’ve hired out a copywriting service to perform the task, is besides the point. So what is the point? That in order to separate your company blog from the sea of false imitators, you’ve got to fortify your web copy.
Breaking the Content Writing Barrier
If you’re setting out to be your own copywriter and publish a blog to attract visitors to your website, there’s one thing to keep in mind: you’re probably not going to say anything that hasn’t been said before. There, I said it. And accepting that reality should help to take some of the stress off. Especially when there’s no better way in the world to give yourself a crippling case of writer’s block than to burden yourself with pressure. Just write what you know, and the words will flow.
The KISS Method (Keep it Social, Stupid!)
To be truly effective, content writing has to accomplish one goal. Be social. So how do you make your web copy or blog “social?” Here are a few ideas.
- Look your readers in the eye. Engage them on a face-to-face level (to the extent that you can, sitting at a computer desk a thousand miles from your nearest reader… but it is possible). A copywriter should never talk down to their audience, even when discussing something that they’re an obvious authority on and those reading along are hanging onto every word. Incidentally, that’s not an easy thing to accomplish, so don’t let yourself be crushed if you don’t amass a rabid, million-strong following overnight. Remember, slow and steady wins the race – with special emphasis on “steady.”
- Which brings me to my second tip about producing online copywriting. A large part of being social in life by is paying the occasional visit. How that pertains to your web copy content writing is that you have to get it out there on a regular basis. If you can only afford the time to write one blog post per month, make sure that you publish it on the same day each month – the first of the month, for example, or the 13th if you’re so spookily inclined – so that people will know when to expect it. If your “friends” can’t rely on you, they may just find someone else to play with… or another blog to read.
- Tell them something they may not know. That’s right, share your trade secrets. Before you scoff and click away, consider that nothing is gained by keeping everything to yourself. Not these days, anyway, where anything you’ll have to say has probably already been said more eloquently and a lot longer ago than you think (see “Breaking the Content Writing Barrier” above). Sharing your secrets identifies you as an authority, and authorities get followings.
Having a business blog is all about selling. But you have to understand that it’s far more important to sell yourself than your product or services. Picture yourself as a local merchant, and the Internet as your home village. The better known and liked you are about town, the more apt customers are to patronize your establishment. Accost them in the street trying to shuck your wares at every opportunity, and they’ll stay away in droves. Frequent blog content writing and high quality, social web copy are your avenue for accomplishing that end.