Do you consider yourself a grammar whiz? A punctuation maven? A spelling expert? All professional copywriters have the basic skills that make them successful writers, but even if you’re a seasoned vet, there are always ways you can grow in the field. Here are five tips to take your writing skills to the next level.
1. Understand Persuasion and Conversion
Writing for conversions is different than writing simply for the sake of providing information. Although conversion writing should also be informative, it takes on a different tone. Think about what will make your website visitor fill out that form or click on that link. Some tactics we use when writing for conversions are:
- AIDA: Attention, interest, desire and action are all a part of understanding what makes users complete an action on your website.
- Pain and Solution: It’s a simple concept, but one that requires you to understand your audience and know what problem they want you to solve for them.
2. Understand Buyer Personas
Once I started learning about buyer personas, it seemed that I found articles about this topic on every industry blog. The tricky part is that everyone has a different method for developing buyer personas. No matter how you choose to develop them, just make sure you do it. Knowing the buying habits and thought processes of your customers helps you develop content that they’ll be receptive to.
3. Enhance Content Strategies
With every Panda or Penguin update, it reminds us that re-evaluating content strategies is crucial. So, along with understanding the algorithm changes, it’s important to constantly be looking for new and innovative ways to garner the interest of your audience. Providing useful information in a creative or new format can be just the thing you need to make a splash in the marketplace.
4. Know the Buying Cycle
Think about those times when you’re just browsing a website for information. You’re not ready to buy, but you see large buttons all over the place urging you to “Buy now!” It’s jarring, right? That’s when it’s clear that marketers for that website don’t understand where you are in the buying cycle. Content should lead people naturally through the buying cycle and not force them into anything they’re not ready to commit to just yet.
5. Remember to Self-Edit
I know this isn’t exactly a new idea, but it’s important nonetheless and it’s something I think a lot of writers take for granted. In a fast-paced industry that forces you to be adaptable to changes, it can be tempting to just post content that you’re “pretty sure” is grammatically correct and provides sound information. But as a consumer, I know that when I spot a grammar mistake or read something that doesn’t quite make sense, the credibility of that website takes a major hit in my mind. Edit for clarity, persuasiveness and accuracy, but don’t forget that the smallest grammar or spelling mistake can completely ruin your message.
It doesn’t matter how many years you’ve been a writer, everyone can benefit from evaluating their skills, adding some new ones, or revisiting some old skills.