Ever find yourself staring at a screen as blank as your brain? If so, you probably haven’t done enough research on who you’re writing to and why.
Research should take up two thirds of your time. Your goal should be to keep going until you reach the ‘a ha’ moment when everything clicks into place and you know exactly why the product matters and how you’re going to sell it. Then writing it down is the easy part.
Remember, we’re in the selling business. We’re not trying to win a literary prize or to get compliments on our elegant turn of phrase. It’s structure, making the complex simple and sales psychology that matters.
One of the key goals when researching is to understand your target customer’s hopes, dreams and motivations. Your copy may be read by millions, but you want to imagine you’re selling to just one. An imaginary person (a.k.a. buyer persona) sat across the table from you whom you have to convince to spend money.
So how do you work out who this person is and what to say to them?
You could do what most marketers seem to do and guess. But I know you’re better than that.
Here are four tools you can use for finding out who that person sat opposite you is, what they care about and what will motivate them to buy your product:
1. Quantcast – Pop in the URL of your client’s website to get demographic and lifestyle insights on their target audience.
2. Surveys – You can drop a survey to your client’s existing email list. Or you can use tools like Survey Monkey to ask strangers what they thinks about your product, the problems they need solving and what will get them spending money.
3. Reviews – When selling B2C, Amazon’s reviews are a goldmine of opinions and insights. It’s amazing how much people are willing to share on the problems they were experiencing with other products. Here’s a tip – check out the one or two star reviews to find objections you must address.
4. Competitors – Does a competitor have a high converting VSL, sales page or email series you can gain inspiration from? If so, go through their copy and note down the key elements of their sales argument, what proof they provide and the benefits they focus on. Then make it your mission to not just replicate but improve on what they’ve done. There’s no such thing as a crowded market when your copy out-converts your rivals.
The best door to door salesmen know how to listen and what questions to ask. You can’t convince someone to buy something unless they feel a gnawing pain in their gut. With these four research tips you can unearth deeply buried market needs to address in your copy and make it more persuasive as a result.