A few weeks back, I cringed my way through yet another website littered with typos, spelling mistakes, sloppy grammar and badly written copy.
This time it was a design company – you know, the kind of guys you trust with making your business look good.
I don’t think so.
This is about professionalism and credibility, and showing people – or, to give them their other name, potential clients – that you pay attention to the details. It’s about giving them confidence that they’re in safe hands for every part of the job they’re (thinking about) entrusting to you.
But it’s about far more than knowing your their from your there, or your you’re from your your. People seem to think copywriters are just people blessed with a gift for words.
Copywriters’ superpowers lie in learning exactly what a business offers, stepping inside the minds of its prospects to work out what makes them tick, and then crafting powerful words that connect the two. In so doing, a good copywriter will win their client the desired reaction – be it new customers, bigger spenders or a higher profile.
I’m talking about content that turbo-boosts your brand, grabs attention, tells your story, and engages your ideal customers by speaking their language – the kind of copy that gets the hairs-on-the-neck “how did they know?” reaction that happens when it feels like it’s been written just for them.
Great copy paints pictures, tells the world what you can do, and how well – in just the right number of words (half the battle, btw). Great copy builds credibility. Great copy leads prospects in the direction you want. Great copy differentiates your business, drives sales and builds relationships.
Bad copy? Quite the opposite – it single-handedly sabotages your brand.
When you’ve reached the enviable position of having prospects’ eyeballs on your content (so far, so good), you’re pretty much standing with the ball at your feet in front of an open goal.
Bad copy misses it by a mile.
How? By failing to convey any sense of your core brand message (you do have one, don’t you?). By churning out the same old stuff as everyone else – including your competitors. By creating a fog around what you do, or how well you do it, or the incredible benefits of using your business. By serving up a mess of words that says everything and nothing – overcomplicating, confusing, and failing to ignite or maintain interest.
Careless copywriting goes further still, not just missing the open goal, but actively – and quickly – building a negative impression that damages your brand and loses you business.
Case in point: would I use this design company? Based on that website, no. It doesn’t matter how good their work is, because their careless approach to copy undermines it – sowing doubts about professionalism, attention to detail, and more.
I’ll lay my cards on the table: copy matters far more than the rest of your branding.
Great web design, stunning photography, eye-catching logos – they don’t count for anything if they’re served with lacklustre, off-brand copy that fails to ignite and convert.
If you’re serious about your business, get serious about your copy.
Often it’s a task best left to a good copywriter.
If you struggle with copy – as many people do, and that’s OK – get help. If you’re confident about your ability to produce engaging content, but conscious that grammar or spelling are your Achilles Heel, there are free/low cost tools out there – like Grammarly. At the very least, get a friend or colleague to cast an eye over content before you hit Publish.
If you do need help, know that Creative Mongrel’s copywriting services can ignite your brand, not with volume of words, not with writing that’s clever for clever’s sake, but with plain, on-message talk that steers your customers towards the outcome you want.
It’s a very worthwhile investment in your brand.