The average person checks their phone 100 times per day. Many of those times are spent scrolling through social media sites, so how do you cut through the clutter and grab a potential customer’s attention on one of those many forays into the interweb? While having compelling visual content can not be overstated, having the right copy is going to be the difference between getting those clicks or just being more white noise. Below are five key tips to remember when writing digital ad copy that will help convert.
1) The Hero Effect
When selling a product or promoting your business it’s easy to situate the company as the “hero” of the story. While listing off the company accolades or the great product features isn’t the wrong approach it’s always best to reframe the narrative to make the consumer the hero of the story. How does buying this product make them better? Fulfill their dreams, desires, or solve their issue? Position your company as the guide, setting the customer up for success as the protagonist. Once you’re seen as an ally on their quest you will be a trusted source going forward.
Don’t say “We’ve created the best moisture-wicking fabric for athletes”.
When you can say “Now you can work out hard without breaking a sweat”. Both express the same benefit but one focuses on the customer’s triumph, not the company’s.
2) What’s The Benefit?
It’s important to make it crystal clear to your audience how they are going to benefit from your product. There are two approaches you can take and it’s good to test both. The 5-foot benefit speaks to instant gratification. These benefits are so close, they’re within reach. Statements like “Save 50%” or “Find your perfect match with this quiz” lets the customer know they will benefit immediately by taking action.
The other approach is to offer the 5-mile benefit, these benefits are life-changing and therefore will take time to show. Offers like “Have clear skin in time for prom” or “Have more time to spend with your kids”.
Try testing both approaches and see which one your audience responds to best.
3) Short & Sweet
We live in a caption-centric world online. No one wants to read multiple paragraphs, let alone long-winded sentences while scrolling through their feed. Your pitch has to be short, sweet and to the point. Limit excess words as much as possible. Most ad copy should be between 40 and 90 characters, quickly moving the prospect from the headline to the call to action. For practice, write out the sentence you want to convey to the customer. Then challenge yourself to remove 3-5 words from that sentence.
Don’t say: “X is a software that will streamline your accounts and take your business to the next level.”
When you can say: “Tools to take your business to the next level”. Carefully chosen, dynamic words are the difference between a click and a scroll.
4) Use Magic Words
There are certain words that really pop off the screen so it’s important to try to use them as often as you can within the context of your ad. Words such as: New, Now, Free, Because, Instantly, Limited and Sale. Also, using tastefully placed emojis will be another ally in gaining attention.
5) Have A Call To Action
You’ve hooked your audience with compelling, short sentences. Your product has made them the hero about to gain a clear benefit – now they need to feel prompted to do something. Having a call to action is a critical part of your copy. A call to action, or CTA, puts focus and urgency on what the reader should do next. “Shop Now” “Learn More” “Click Here” or “Sign Up” are useful terms you can use for the CTA button on the bottom of ads, as well as incorporating those phrases into your copy. Ending with a clear CTA will lead to more landing page views and conversions, which is always the goal of a well-written ad.