What is Copywriting? + Why is it Important for my Small Business?
Updated: Jul 27
What is copywriting?
Copywriting is the effective use of powerful words used to connect a brand with an audience. It is often used to ‘sell’ or gain ‘leads’. But words, when
chosen carefully and effectively, can create a brand story, character or ‘tone-of-voice’, to encourage your audience to lean in and find out more about your business.
All businesses use copy to market their products. In an ever-increasingly noisy world, the words you choose to ‘cut through’ the noise is vitally important. Copy can be the traditional paper based, brochures/ ad/ white papers, or increasingly digital and online, websites/ social media/ email marketing. So, now we know 'what is copywriting', and now we can discover, why is it important?
But WHY is copywriting important to your small business?
Great copy brings a brand to life! Brand identity is so much more than a cute logo or a colour palate. Rather than throwing random words at a page and hoping they work, your company’s ethos and values need to be communicated clearly and emotively to your ideal audience. Great copy clarifies messages and persuades effectively.
People want to be engaged and entertained. If you can think back to the last book, podcast or article you read, it wasn’t just random words that kept you engaged. Rather, it was a carefully crafted combination of just the right words, (the story in fact) that made you turn that page, click that link or kept you coming back for more. Engagement is the driving factor in creative copy.
Copywriters will carefully create, curate and craft just the right words to connect with your ideal audience.
You don’t have to look far to find effective marketing copy. The Big Business marketing land is peppered with clever slogans and mottos, just consider these famous slogans as an example of crafted words to create a brand…
MasterCard: 'There are some things money can't buy. For everything else, there's MasterCard.'
L'Oréal Paris: 'Because You're Worth It.'
Or more locally,
Wellington: Absolutely, Positively Wellington.
(which is miles better than, ‘Hamilton: More Than You Expect’ -which I grew up with!)
Immediately engaging, memorable and with the magic trifecta of describing the brand in a nutshell. Perfect copy.
Your audience will be making snap decisions as they scroll through their Insta feed or quick Google Search. You need to be found online, be effective at drawing in your potential clients and clearly communicate your company’s values, products and how they are going to solve your audience’s pain points.
Brain science + words matter.
There are proven studies on the psychology of words used in selling. Marketers use all the tricks in the book in order to get the customer to the purchase point. First impressions last in terms of how your audience views your company. You might just be the best and most impressive business in your market, but if your messaging isn’t clear and focused, then it's likely that your customer will head past you on their way to your clearly communicating competitor.
But it's just words right?
So often copywriting for a project gets handed to whoever in the office has spare time, or a bit of interest in writing, or whoever puts their hand up to do it… Yes, it is writing. But your business needs GOOD writing. If your website bounce rate is too high, or you aren’t converting leads, it's time to take a look at the words you’re using. If your copy doesn’t present you as the expert in your field then you risk losing the trust of your audience. They will simply head off to another company that has nailed their messaging.
Another factor to consider is that writing about yourself is actually quite difficult. Yes, you know the ins and outs of the technical aspects of your product or business, but are you too close? Is your audience being left behind with your technical jargon? Is your messaging clear and your tone-of-voice consistent?
Be the expert with professionalism
First impressions matter. Professionalism plays a huge part here. Your copy should be free of grammatical errors, use emotive language to identify and solve pain points, and include clear call-to-actions (CTAs) to lead your customers through to the point of sale, or booking. If your webcopy is clunky, with errors (looking at you sneaky apostrophes!), with repeated or unnecessary text and CTAs that are too ‘salesy’, you’ll find their attention quickly wanders off.
People do not like to feel directly sold at, and so the CTAs need to have careful thought, to encourage the customer to find out more about you. The overall aim with this is to build trust so that your audience is drawn to engage with your product or services.
Using storytelling in your copy
No, storytelling is not just for preschoolers. We all love to explore new worlds/ ideas/ lands/ possibilities. Your copy should take your audience on a journey of discovery. A discovery of what makes your business or product so special. Emotive, imaginative copy can create characters, backstories, whole new worlds! And take your audience along for the ride… So they can’t resist being part of the world you’ve opened up to them!
Get Found Online
Search Engine rankings really do matter! Lurking about on page 3 of Google is a problem for a business. The only way to make sure that you get found online effectively is through Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) of your copy. SEO can seem overwhelming if you’re new to it, it's time consuming and frustrating to wrangle on your own. Copywriters deal with effective keyword research every day, AND they know how to sprinkle that SEO magic through the copy in an organic way. Goodbye clunky keyword inclusion and hello SEO rankings!
Get ahead of the competition!
If you’re a small business owner and the businesses in your field aren’t online yet, then this is your golden opportunity to be ahead of the game. Get online and go for world domination!
Social media is an excellent (nearly free) tool for marketing your business, however, your brand tone-of-voice of your website needs to flow through into your social media. And remember, while many small businesses start out marketing through social media only, you don’t own that space. Too many businesses have discovered that to their horror when their accounts have suddenly been closed or hacked. You own your website, and your email list. Having a website becomes a no-brainer really!
Ready to get going on creating clear and fresh copy?
If your Wellington small business’ copy is looking on the dull side, needs a freshen up or even a whole new look, reach out to see how my professional copywriting skills can work for you. My full list of services are available here or get clicking that button below!