So why do so many digital marketers struggle to figure it out?
By Stephen Kimball, Owner, Stephen Kimball DM Copywriting
I’ve been a direct marketing copywriter for 24 years, straight out of college. It’s the only “job” I’ve ever had. And helping my clients make more money with better copy and smarter marketing truly is my passion. I know all about selling with compelling copy that communicates at a human level, has a strong call to action, and a well-thought-out offer.
The key to conversion is good copy
Whether by trial and error, or some painful, costly launches, most online marketers have become well aware that the key to conversion is good copy, paired with eye-catching graphics, a good product, and a good offer.
Surprisingly, despite recognizing the problem poor copy creates, and a need for more persuasive copy, most companies I spoke with still haven’t fixed their copywriting and conversion problem.
I hear the same story from clients, or potential clients, almost every day ...
“Man, do we struggle with our copy.”
“I write it myself, but I don’t want to, and I’m not good at it.”
“We still haven’t found a good/trusted copywriting source we can rely on.”
“We need a good copywriter who understands marketing too. And they are hard to find.”
“We know if we brought in a professional copywriter, we’d see a boost in our conversion, but we haven’t.”
Slapping a quick and dirty landing page together just doesn’t cut it anymore.
The reality is that most online creative is still cobbled together by tech people, who know how to connect all the technical pieces, but fail in the creative marketing department.
And far too often, instead of taking the time to create their own copy, companies simply rip off other people’s content. This, to me, is the lowest and laziest road you can take.
If you’re going to start a legitimate online business, the best approach is to take the time and spend the money to do it right. “Borrowing,” “tweaking,” or “massaging” someone else’s copy is poor behavior. No one likes it when others do it.
Plus, you may simply be borrowing someone else’s poorly-converting, or previously-borrowed copy that gets you no further.
And you may find you’ve spent your own money testing another’s bad copy.
So, when companies get an idea, source a product, put the funnel together with borrowed copy, and launch, they tend to be surprised when no one buys.
Even more painful is when marketers spend a small fortune to drive traffic, and when the traffic arrives, they quickly leave without buying, or even looking around (reading).
To me as a marketer, not fixing this problem is criminal. Even negligent.
Your prospects had enough interest to click on your ad, or read your presell article, went to see what you had to offer, and left!
This scenario is the brick and mortar equivalent of you stopping people on the sidewalk, and asking them if they’re hungry for pizza. They say yes, walk into your pizza parlor, wanting pizza, but then, they simply look around for a few seconds and leave without placing an order.
Why did this happen?
• They walked in, passed instant judgment, and didn’t like what they saw.
• They didn’t feel welcome.
• The signage and messaging was bad.
• They didn’t see anything they wanted.
• They weren’t told what to do.
• Or, they quickly saw a disconnect between what was advertised and what was for sale.
Solving this question should be what keeps online business owners awake at night.
You simply can’t run an online business that way. If you want to run a successful business, and move product, you have to instantly communicate with good, clear copy that gets their attention with a promise of satisfaction.
Connect to your prospect
One of the biggest mistakes I see, when people ask me to review their landing page or website that is not converting, is that, as an advertisement or marketing tool, it completely fails to connect with the prospect.
They visited for a reason. And too many landing pages and websites fall short in assuring visitors that they made the correct choice, and that the company has what they came looking for.
The best converting pages tell visitors exactly what is being offered on that page.
When people visit a webpage, you have to tell them why they should be there. You have to show them what they have to gain or benefit from sticking around.
You have to invite them to read what’s on the page, and most importantly, you have to tell them what to do. You have to tell them what action you want them to take.
The best DM copywriters know exactly how to do this.
That’s why the best DM writers are sought after and never without work, because they know how to sell and market anything. They are hired gun, freelance copywriters. And they are available for digital marketers as much as they are for the direct mail giants.
Truly, good copywriting is the king of better conversion. Even if you’re a pro at HTML design, placing Facebook ads that drive loads of traffic, analytics and testing, or have the best product in the world... if any part of your sales funnel has shoddy copy, it will break down and kill conversion and sales.
From the banner ads, to the presale pages, to the landing page, to the upsell, to the downsell or the exit pop, to the order page, to the auto responder emails, if any of it is bad, you will lose people you paid to bring in like water through a sieve.
From beginning to end, your copy has to be inviting, has to be personal. It has to communicate to your prospects as if you know them well, and be able to share some time with them like family, as they get to know your product. Don’t be afraid to tell them what to do. After all, that’s why they are there.
This adage will always be true: You get what you pay for.
Now, the real crux of this whole problem, the main reason companies don’t seek out a good copywriter, the real pain point for online businesses, is this... money.
Good copywriters don’t come cheap. Digital marketers don’t want to pay their fees. Then they rip their hair out when their offer bombs, despite endless rounds of tweaking.
If you’re not willing or able to pay outright for better copy, you could hire a good writer to copy chief everything for you. That’s still a much better option than handing this important responsibility to someone who really doesn’t understand marketing at a base level, or who has no copywriting experience.
But if you ask me, I’ll tell you hands-down, the best solution for the best outcome is to seek out the top direct response copywriters today.
The one question you should be asking…
When operating a business online, you have to understand buying habits, human nature and what drives people to buy. You have to invite and communicate with personality. Use common sense, sales appeal and emotion to clearly lead them down the path that you want.
If you leave them to wonder, wander and get lost, or there is a disconnect from your ads to the landing page or website, your money paid to get them there is wasted.
With all things considered, today is a great day to ask yourself one simple question: is your copy helping or hurting your online conversation goals?
The reality is that you are competing in a marketplace with smart online businesses who are paying good direct copywriters to work on their offers, and it is paying off in big dividends for them.
Finding the talented, experienced DM copywriters in the U.S. is not hard. Do a Google search. Or ask around. Chances are some one you know already works with one.
About the author…
Stephen Kimball is an accomplished direct response copywriter, with more than 24 years of success in direct marketing, health supplements, financial products, banks, insurance, medical, and real estate and dozens of other industries. In his current role as Owner/Chief Copywriter and Marketing Expert at his own company, he has served over 800 individual clients around the world.
Are you looking for better converting copy?
Leveraging extensive global experience with marketing, VSL scripts, landing pages, email campaigns, and complete sales funnels, Stephen is a valuable asset for companies seeking guidance on creating, reconfiguring, revising, and fixing under-performing online efforts. His broad areas of expertise include the purpose of marketing, customer intelligence, human nature and buying habits, customer psychology, direct marketing, pricing, call center, and online advertising.
Contact Stephen directly at email@example.com to put his 24 years of DM copywriting experience to work for you!
The blog sets out a variety of materials to be used for educational purposes only; the author(s) do not intend the blog to be a source of legal advice. Please retain and seek the advice of a lawyer and use your own good judgement before choosing to act on any information included in the blog. If you choose to rely on the materials, you do so entirely at your own risk.