Copywriting 101

Copywriting to me is like poetry. It’s a powerful way to convey a message in as few words as possible. There is a rhyme and a lyrical quality to copywriting. It’s something I’ve wanted to do since I was 7-years-old. If you are interested in being a copywriter too, check out this infographic by ABC Copywriting:

Copywriting-Infographic

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*What a Feeling!

{Courtesy of Pinterest. Originally from otredades.tumblr.com.}

Mediums That Move Me

Last night I was bawling harder than I had been in a long time. Like a traffic accident, I was both glued to the TV screen and fighting to turn away. Indecisive about what I should do next, I finally decided to whip out my nifty remote control and put a pause on it instead.

I was watching one of my favorite, but recently cancelled shows Little People, Big World. When I saw Matt Roloff cry in response to his eldest son leaving the coop, I lost it. The entire hour was a crying fest, one heartbreaking moment after another.

It’s not the first time that I’ve cried while watching TV. Oprah (miss her dearly) used to do it to me almost every weekday. My poor husband tissue ready, has gotten used to it by now.

But it’s definitely not the only medium that moves me. Books do it too. I felt that way when reading Lisa Genova’s Still Alice. Psychologically gripping and yet beautifully heartbreaking, it was a fiction story told in realistic detail of what it’s like having Alzheimer’s disease. I couldn’t put it down.

Emotion + Writing = Good Writing?

All this emo-talk got me thinking about good writing. Good writing whether it’s a novel, a non-fiction book, a copywriting pieces moves you. It touches you in unexpected ways. It’s what I love best about the written word. It’s ability to leap from the page and touch you.

One of my first memories of its power was reading Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. It was an old copy of my cousin’s from his cousin. Truthfully, I ended up stealing borrowing it (only to return it twenty years later) because I truly couldn’t part with it. At night, I would bring a piece of chocolate to my room, careful to not let my smudged fingers ruin the page, and take a bite as I read about the chocolate factory. With mouth drooling and senses heightened, I felt like I was a part of the story.

A Tip for Moving Readers (Hopefully to the nearest bookstore.)

That’s how you should write your next piece, post, poem, article, novel. Find a way to be that reader, that character, and write in their perspective. Be the person who’s looking for an affordable way to live luxuriously. Think about her work day. Think about what would make her life easier. Use your words as if they were its own character, moving others, changing their lives in small ways.

That’s what I love most about the written word. Its potential to make substantial changes in a person’s life. As a writer, that’s what we should be conscious of and as a paid writer that’s what we need to take advantage of.

Have you read anything that’s moved you recently? I’m always on the hunt for a good book!

*Oh and in case you’re wondering about the title, it’s an ode to a song I loved in the 80’s. It actually has multiple meanings for me. My cousin and I were dancing to this song when she accidentally kicked me in the face. Unforgettable moment to say the least!

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The Key to Long Lasting Online Relationships? Adding Your Personal Touch

{flickr photo by: rent-a-moose}

Last week, I wrote two blog posts for the site I work for and it surprisingly did well. My article on 10 Tips for Healthy Living received 105 tweets and 88 Facebook likes. I also wrote a guest post for business writer Cathy Miller that got 21 comments. I wrote 5 Steps to Transform Your Life for Feelgooder.com, a Darren Rowse creation and it too received a lot of attention. I’ve been thinking about these articles and the ones I see online and I figured something out in the process. Here’s the secret I’ve discovered to permanent, long-lasting relationships.

Human beings desire connection.

Lots of blogs get popular quick because they offer relevant, important information.

But blogs that have staying power are the ones that offer something else.

Getting Over a Thousand Comments on Their Blog

Take Young House Love, for example. They’ve been blogging since 2007 and have rounded up quite a following. And I think I know why. In addition to providing informative posts on DIY and home design, they also have a fun, unique writing style with a personal touch. Their recent posts garnered 1862 comments!! Wowza! And the topic? Their daughter’s birth story.

A lot of my guest posts and articles are written with that same idea in mind-the ability to transform your words into a voice of connection.

When I interview an expert and I get that gut in-your-stomach kind of feeling, I know that this is going to move people. I have an instinctual feeling that this could be influential. And it doesn’t matter if I’m talking about caring for rabbits or yourself. It’s that universal feeling that we all want to be connected. Especially on the internet.

How to Keep Your Followers Interested

  • For business owners. Refocus your energies on your clients and customers. Forget about making the sale for now. Think about how you can really connect with people, not $. Then reach out to them through your blog, articles and Facebook updates. Today, I was listening to a free webinar by Authentic Promoter Molly Gordon. She was talking about focusing on a single client versus thousands. If you can focus on how your words and business impacts one person, you will be a lot more successful. Why? Because the more you focus on a single person, the more authentic and personal you will be and the more connection you will likely have. And more connection = longer, lasting relationships. And lasting relationships = more business.
  • For writers. As someone who manages social media for a living, I know that questions and comments that inspire conversation are much more popular than ones that are void of emotions. Social media is the way people are attempting to connect and interact. And this applies to anything you write. I have wasted spent 9 months rewriting an essay. Then, I took a class and realized why I was so stuck. I was writing around my subject. Because of the fear of letting it all hang out, I was taking a personal, important time in my life and regurgitating it without the good, revealing stuff.

Writers if you have a story, have the courage to write it. Give it the attention and emotion it deserves. If you can find a way to transform your feelings and thoughts through words, you will find not only more business, but more satisfying meaningful ones too.

In the end, it’s not about making the most money. {Well at least it’s not for me.} It’s about using what I’m good at as a tool to create a meaningful career and life. And that’s only possible when you add your personal touch to everything you do.

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Quick Copywriting Tip

flickr photo by thekeithhall

Here’s a quick tip if you’re feeling stuck on how to market your product or create product descriptions with Wow!

Read print catalogs.

I have a secret. Not even my husband knows about this one.

I devour Victoria Secret’s catalogues, but he thinks it’s for the clothes (although they have great stuff in there!). But I read it for the copy. Whoever writes their copy is genius! These use few words, but the ones they use are compelling, engaging and fun. All things you want to use to sell your stuff (or other’s stuff) right? Things like, “jungle boogie” to describe animal prints shoes or “good day, sundress,” to play on lyrics to an old song. “Bags to differ” even works, cause it’s a nice play on words and it’s fun.

Maybe the style won’t fit everyone. But it will definitely get your copywriting juices flowing.

What about you?

What gets you in the mood for creative writing? Are fiction books your thing? Commercials? Reading other people’s insanely to die for copy? Share the goods here please.

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