These 4 Copywriting Techniques Work Really Well … Right Up Until They Don’t

These 4 Copywriting Techniques Work Really Well … Right Up Until They Don’t

Reader Comments (20)

  1. As a new copywriter I appreciate learning some of the nuance of these techniques. I read this article a couple times to let Nick’s expert insights sink in. Thank you!

    • You’re very welcome. And if you’re just starting out, this is the perfect time to learn not only the techniques, but also how to avoid misusing them. : )

  2. Nick, I never knew how to describe conversational copy that missed the mark. Chatty and over familiar are perfect.

    Thanks for the tips

  3. Awesome post, Nick! I have seen abuse of these techniques as well. I think part of the problem is that writers often forget about their readers. It becomes all about the message, not about the audience. We need to think more about how we would feel if we were the recipient of messages that shout, or that lack authenticity. I bet we would change our writing if we did. Thanks for the reminder to consider how we’re using these techniques, in order to make them more effective!

    • Great feedback. Thanks! One simple test is to read your copy out loud. Does it sound like something you’d say to someone, face to face? If not, it’s time to try again. : )

  4. IMHO, I think that most of us new to copywriting are still learning the best approaches and best practices to take when writing copy and content. I think that it takes practice, hard work and experience to get it right. Just my two cents here. 🙂

    • Agreed. the best copy is always the result of hard work. And while you’re learning various techniques, just be aware of the negatives that can come with them.

  5. #1 is the ultimate wake up call for bloggers; you see what you’re doing from scarcity, and what you’re doing from abundance. I avoid time deadlines. I do not want to scare someone into a sale or to use fear to manipulate. More detached dude I am, saying folks can buy if they want, whenever. I don’t fear missing out on a sale which is the only reason you’d scare someone into a sale. Mirror effect. Super post Nick.

    • Glad you liked the post. I think urgency and scarcity messages can be ok, so long as writers don’t use them as blunt instruments. Also, when deadlines are credible and real… that’s much better than when they are simply made up for the purposes of the promotion.

  6. Ah yes, the old “treat people like they’re stupid” trick. Amazing how rarely that works, isn’t it? (Be sure to answer “yes.”) I love reading your stuff, best bud Nick.

  7. Thank you, Nick. I really enjoyed the post. These are all great guidelines to have in mind when we are writing. Adding interest and variety with well thought out questions and lists draws readers in. Avoiding the “chatty and overfamiliar” tone and the high-pressure close are important to avoid turning readers off. It’s always important to treat your audience as the intelligent people they are and to respect their time and attention.

  8. The common thread when using these techniques the wrong way is being focused on yourself/message instead of your reader’s needs and interests. Like Nick said, write great copy first, then consider using the techniques…you don’t have to use them.

    • Thanks Yolanda. I’m not against the techniques… I use them myself. Just use them in the service of a great message, not as a replacement for a great message.

  9. Nick,

    Your post made my day! 😉 I will check out your guide and manifesto on conversational copywriting.

    As a former purchaser, I am bit “allergic” to the pushy tactics that are used by some copywriters and marketers on the Internet.

    Best Premises,

    Martin Lindeskog

  10. Great post, Nick! This was my favorite part: “Copywriting ‘secrets’ work at their best when they are invisible to the reader.” Sage advice. Thank you for sharing!

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