Copywriting for Audience Engagement
All worthwhile relationships take work. Be dedicated to your audience. You want to be able to think about their future as your customers so that you can keep them satisfied for years to come. You will want to study them, poll them, and communicate with them often so that communication between you will take your engagement to a whole new level.
Using social networks to create an awesome customer experience is what engagement is all about. What’s more is that you can do this with copywriting and using techniques and skills that you can learn, so that you use just the right words at just the right time to engage with your audience.
Why Social Media Engagement Matters
There are numerous reasons that social media engagement matters for your business. Let’s look at some.
Sharing Only Doesn’t Work
Simply sharing and broadcasting your comment everywhere without ever communicating with and engaging with your audience won’t get much action. You really need to nurture them long term so that when you do share something, they jump on it.
Find more ways to connect more often instead of just blindly sharing information without comment. At the very least, write a blurb about what you’re sharing, why you’re sharing, and what you want them to do about it.
Your Customer Expects Communication
Whether you like it or not, today’s consumers expect you to answer questions and talk to them via social media platforms wherever they choose to post to you and about you. Today, a lot of people don’t even answer their telephone when it rings, much less look at something shared with no idea what’s in it for them.
They don’t want to work hard to communicate with you, so make it easy. Let them email you easily; answer questions on Facebook. Don’t complain about your customers contacting you off hours. Answer them as soon as you can, and they’ll learn to trust that you have their back.
Engagement Generates Word of Mouth
When you engage on a more regular basis with your audience through social media with the content you share, the words you write, and the techniques you use, they’re going to be more loyal to you and recommend you more.
If you are active and personable on social platforms, people are going to learn about you faster. People talk about things that either truly wow them or truly tick them off. You want to wow people so that you can generate more word of mouth.
You Will Learn More from Your Audience
When you are in a continuous listening and communicating mode, you’re going to learn more from your audience. Your audience is going to share more with you when you ask more questions, conduct more polls, and answer more questions. Don’t be afraid to communicate with them.
The frequency with which you interact with your audience will determine if you know anything about them at all. You want to know about them and the best way to do that is to be around them. Go where they are so you can learn more from your audience that you can use in your copywriting to encourage more engagement.
For all these reasons, social media engagement makes all the difference in your bottom line. If you want more sales, more shares, more comments, and more engagement, start asking questions, conducting more polls, and being open and easy to contact. Start by using copywriting techniques that can help you grab your audience’s attention, build trust, and learn about them.
Ways to Use Copywriting to Increase Engagement
Engagement with your audience is so important because it helps them build trust in you and your knowledge. The more your audience trusts you, the more they’re going to join your lists, answer your offers, and stick around your email lists and social platforms. There are several ways that copywriting techniques can be used in order to get more engagement on social media.
Let’s look at some examples.
Leave Them Hanging
Think about how the post looks before you publish it. Where are the words for the blurb going to end? What does the audience see? What will make them want to click through to open it up, or click through to read or buy what you’re discussing?
If you can make them curious with your words by making them need to find out the rest of the story, you are winning. However, please don’t try to use tricky ways to make them want to read more or click through to read something. You want them to find what they thought they’d find after they clicked through.
In other words, you want the blurb to have enough information to make them want to click to read more. Depending on how you write it, the words will end at a certain spot on various platforms. Think about the words you’re using and use the most important ones first, so that just at a glance they know it’s important to click through and have a clue why.
Benefits over Features
You’ve likely known this one for a long time, but here’s a reminder. Don’t forget that your audience cares about what’s in it for them and how it benefits them. They don’t really care as much about everything else as you might wish. They do in some ways, but not enough to make them buy. Focus on the benefits and if you mention a feature, mention it in a way that shows how it benefits them. Because you’re selling the results.
For example, if you’re a virtual assistant who has no team (you’re just you), instead of saying you’re a small office you can express the benefit of that. The benefit of being just one person is that you will get to know your client because you’ll be giving them one-on-one attention.
Know Your Specific Audience
The more you can know about your audience, the easier it will be for you to use copywriting techniques to help guide them to where you want them to go. You’ll know more about what makes them tick, what keeps them up at night, and more importantly how you (or your product and service) can fix it.
For example, you need to know where they live, work, and what they do for fun. You also need to know what type of lifestyle they live, what their values are, and what they do for dinner each night. How many kids do they have? Are they married? What religion are they? How does that affect their choices? What type of vocabulary do they prefer to use?
In addition, you need to know what their pain points are, and how your product or service gives them relief and improves their life, business, or investment. Plus, you want them to know how to get the product the fastest way, and in the easiest and best way for them.
If the information you’re sharing is not timely and relevant right now, then they’re not going to pay attention to it. You want to be current. You want them excited about whatever you are sharing. You want them to care. Make sure you’re sharing and engaging about what they care about.
For example, if your niche is about dogs, you don’t want to share a picture of a cat unless it has something to do with a dog. If your content is not relevant to your audience where they are right now, they’re not going to read it or click through.
Use Images Too
It’s super-important today to add images to everything you do. Whether it’s a blog post, an eBook, a report or a social media update, images help your audience notice you. It gets their attention. This is especially true if you put some words over the image too.
For example, when you use an image, make sure that it progresses the story you’re trying to tell with the words. Make sure there is not a disconnect. You don’t want the images to evoke opposing feelings in the audience member.
When you write anything, it’s important to either have someone else or a paid editor to read your writing before you publish it. Nothing can ruin the flow of writing and the meaning of the words more than a typo, a grammar error, or punctuation mistake. While you cannot be perfect, do pay enough attention to double check your work before you publish it.
How to Write Better Headlines Using Copywriting Secrets and Techniques
Copywriting is a type of writing that draws customers in, gets them interested, and leads them toward making a buying decision that is beneficial to the product or service seller. There are several types of copywriting that you can use to help you accomplish more engagement. Let’s look at a few techniques that can help you write better headlines and that garner excellent engagement.
But before we do that, let’s look at the different types of copywriting that you may choose to use to help you write amazing and effective headlines.
This type of copywriting convinces an audience to buy a product or use a service. It’s persuasive writing with a call to action. This type of copy often belongs on a sales page or in a brochure, and you can also use some of it in other types of writing when you want to convert.
This is the type of copywriting people use to create their bylines and headlines. It’s used to help the reader understand an idea and a concept easily. This type of copy you see daily in headlines, subject lines, and maybe even blurbs sometimes.
Using words to please a customer and the search engines take skill. Good search engine optimization (SEO) copywriting uses the terms and phrases that their audience uses when they are searching for things (keywords) in order to attract that audience. The copywriter must make it seem totally natural and normal.
You don’t want to insert keywords just because. You also want to know that the words you are using are really keywords, by researching them. Don’t just make it up. If you think a word is a good keyword (think search term), try it and then study it. Use the search tools to ensure that any word you think is a good keyword or search term really is a good word.
This type of copywriting usually requires very specific knowledge, education and skill in the industry they will write about technically. For example, a technical copywriter may need to write about a process or how to do something step-by-step. Because of that, it’s important that the person writing it truly understands the technology.
You may have reason to use technical copywriting many times throughout your business life. You may want to tell someone on Facebook how to ensure they get all your updates. You may want to share on social media a step-by-step guide to using a software program that you like to use.
This is the content that is on your blog, your website, and even information products. This will consist of how-to articles, list articles, comparison articles and so forth. You are probably familiar with using SEO in content due to plugins like Yoast that help you with it. Most of the writing you do is likely content copywriting.
Regardless of what type of copywriting you’re using to get more social media engagement, copy lives everywhere. The copy you publish anyplace should be well thought out so that you can make every word count.
We need to understand all these types of copywriting so that we can use the tips and tricks to write better headlines in a way that makes sense and truly gets results. A good headline can multiply the eyes that see your content and that will influence how many people buy, sign up, or look at more of your content.
So, let’s get on with the tips for writing better headlines using copywriting techniques.
You want the content to provide value to your audience; therefore, you want to also point out the value in your headlines when you can. We mean value to your audience, not you. After all, it’s about them, not you.
Example: Ace Your Job Interview: 10 Questions You Must Be Able to Answer
This headline is very straightforward about what it does. It’s going to help you get a job because you’re going to do great in your job interview due to going over these ten questions that you learn how to answer properly in the article.
Point Out Uniqueness
You want to differentiate your headline from the others out there about the same topic. If you’re in a competitive niche, it’s likely others are writing or talking about the same thing. It’s okay; just narrow down your uniqueness more.
Example: The 7 Principles That Build a Multiple 6-Figure Blogging Business
This headline seems more personal because you get the idea that these principles may be unique to this business and the author. It is interesting, because you want to know about those principles that helped this person make so much dang money doing something like blogging.
Some people also call this a scarcity model. You want the audience to hurry up and read what you’re promoting, so if something in the headline points out that it won’t be available or it’s urgent to review the info, that will help get clicks.
Example: Top 10 Places to Find Gifts for Her This Holiday
Notice that it’s just the little “this holiday” that makes people reading it realize this is an article that needs to be read soon, before the holiday, so that you can find the gifts on time and get them before the holiday. You don’t have to be so aggressive to evoke urgency as giving a deadline, but if there is one you can do that too.
Find words and numbers that make the headline very specific so that there is no mistake who it’s for and what it’s about. You don’t want to trick your audience into reading. Using stats is a great way to do this. Use facts, data, and numbers in the headline and it will be more enticing to your audience.
Example: 3 Things You Must Do to Get Rock Hard Abs
This is a great example because the number is small, so the reader believes it will be easy to do. If they want rock hard abs, they’re going to want to see these three things because three seems so simple.
Emotion is part of your brand voice. So, do this carefully. Is your brand voice casual, happy, professional, cheerful, or something else? Whatever your normal brand voice is will dictate the type of writing you use to influence your audience. Your voice should encompass the language that your target audience uses. Emotional headlines will get more shares if you get this right.
Example: Keeping the Peace: Family Organizing Tips
This emotional headline recalls the unorganized cluster of a mess at the door and in your kids’ rooms every single night while you yell at them to stop it and clean it up. This headline will get clicks from frustrated moms who want peace and to be more organized.
Use a Formula
Sometimes you just want to let someone else do all the research and try something they did that worked. That’s a legitimate way to do it. Copyblogger.com has a wonderful list of ten sure-fire headline formulas that work. Give them a try.
You can go read these yourself to get the examples. Formulas are a great way to get things done faster.
The other factors important in a headline are the length it should be. The length really depends on the platform you’re putting the final document on, and how you plan to promote it.
What shows up? What does your audience see when they search Google? What about when they see your share on Facebook?
The number of words in the headline, where the words show up, and more, all count when it comes to making headlines that really work. Not only that, but the tone of voice and personality that you show matters too.
Fine-Tune Your Approach and Get It Right Technically
A lot of what works to bring traffic to a website or blog is the engagement you can encourage on each social media platform you use to get to know your audience, interact with your them, and yes, sell to them. One way to do that is with your words.
Copywriting helps you match what you want to do with an artistic yet scientific method that works. Knowing what your audience needs to see in terms of your words, why they use a specific platform such as Pinterest, and what type of hashtags you should use, if any, are answered by studying your audience, the platforms you will use, and then tracking and measuring the results.
Set up your systems so that you can answer these questions before you start writing.
- What are the character limits of the platform for a headline or subject line?
This is true no matter where you’re posting something – email subject lines, blog post headlines, article headlines, blurbs you write for Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, and others.
- When you post an update on Facebook, how much is shown before they need to click to read more?
This is a really important idea because where the words end matters a lot. You don’t want to accidentally cut off an important word. Having this constricting space to write the words can be challenging, but it’s all part of copywriting and making every word count.
- Why does your audience use that platform?
For example, why is your audience on Pinterest? What are they looking for? Usually, it’s the inspiration for a project. Why are they on Facebook? Usually to converse with family and friends. When you know why they are using a platform, that will determine what language you should use and how to get their attention.
- What emotions are appropriate for your niche?
Every niche is different. Some niches are very emotional in terms of the seriousness of them. The fact is, other things are still emotional even if they’re not earth-shattering. Consider what emotions you may want to stir with your words in your viewers and what would elicit action.
- What is the purpose of the update?
If you know the purpose (from the eyes of your audience) for an update that you make, it’s going to help guide your words to fit with your audience better. For example, is their purpose to lose weight, make money, eat better, build a table? Knowing that, why would they click?
This all goes back to the idea that you need to understand your niche fully. Who is your audience? What is your product voiced in terms of what it does for your audience? For example, if you sell daily planners, you sell organization, not planners. The way to fine-tune everything is to understand the platforms and the point before you write one word to persuade your audience to click or act.
In order to use copywriting to encourage more engagement on the social media platforms that you use, you’ll need to take a few steps to ensure that you have the right tools and information first.
Get to Know Your Audience
You’ve heard that before because it’s just everything when it comes to marketing. If you don’t know who they are, it will be very difficult for you to write any type of copy at all. You won’t know who you’re talking to. So many people believe they want to cast a wide net with their words, but the truth is, you do not want to do that. You want a very small net so that you can catch only the people who want to buy from you happily.
Write for One Person
Narrow down at least one audience persona, but you can have more than one. The point is, each time you write you should know which audience persona you’re writing to. Are you writing to someone who already purchased product A and now you want them to buy B? Are you writing to someone who got your freebie and opens all your emails? Who is it? Write only to that one person.
Know Your Point
Each update you post needs a point. Why are you sharing that blog post that you wrote a year ago? Why are you sharing that marketing guy’s post? What is your point? Are you using the info to bring up your awesome 24-hour sale? Do you want them to buy, sign up, read, or comment? What do you want them to do? If you know this, that’s going to help.
It’s important that your audience is really interested in what you have to say. You want them to find you so irresistible that they cannot avoid the temptation to read what you write wherever you write it. Then you want that to go even further, to you being so overwhelming to them that they want to answer your CTAs. How do you do that? You use your knowledge of your audience, your products, and your values to form the words that make up the copy that your audience is reading.
Be Confident in Your Word Choice
When you write any type of copy, you want to be confident in it. Don’t use words that hold back the value you’re offering. For example, instead of saying something like, “As your coach, I try to help you plan, organize, and create effective content for your small business.” Say, “My coaching program will help you not only plan, organize, and create effective content for your small business but I will help you rock it!” Be confident. You’re amazing; it’s okay to say so.
Avoid Passive Voice
One quick word usage problem that harms copywriting every single day is passive voice. Passive voice can make your copy very unclear and even mess up the understanding of the text. Let’s look at an example. Improving this writing problem takes some practice. The first thing to understand is what verbs are and how they relate to your subject, then make it a practice of fixing any passive voice issues when you edit.
For example, consider the sentence “Rocky wagged his tail.” This is a past tense action sentence and is okay. Now consider, “His tail was wagged.” It makes no sense and is hard to understand. In the correct one, the subject (Rocky) made some form of action (wagging) with the direct object of the verb (his tail). He wagged his tail. To avoid passive voice, always ensure that the subject is doing the action.
Use Fewer Words
It’s so easy to add useless words that don’t advance your serious meaning and make the sentence hard to understand. See what happened there? A better way to say this is, “Adding words that don’t advance your meaning makes it hard to understand your sentence.” Make every single word count. Oh, wait. Let’s try again. “Make every word count.”
When you are writing, you don’t want to think about the rules. It will slow you down. Instead, just write. Just write what you want to say without worrying if it fits rules of any kind. Think about your audience’s persona and write to them about the thing you’re doing. Then go back and edit it. Remove words. Add words. Use different words. Make it better. Test new ideas. Try new things. When you edit, and test and try, you will make the copy more understandable to your audience and avoid any embarrassment.
Like most things, copywriting for any reason, including to improve social media engagement, requires practice. If you’re tracking the metrics and studying your results, you’ll discover over time what works best for your audience. Then you can do more of what works best and less of what doesn’t work. Take the time to practice.
Finally, one thing that will make a lot of difference when you are trying to encourage engagement on social media is for you to engage. Answer questions. Like responses. Be part of the group. Add to the comment, ask questions for understanding, and communicate with your audience. Be easy to reach and be open to them. You’ll get more engagement from them if it’s going two ways and not just one way.
You can write better and more engaging copy that will encourage your audience to interact with you on a whole new level. It just takes a little knowledge of your business but also the industry and human nature, plus the technology you’re using to get the word out. All of which you can learn through research and study.