The Art of Persuasion: How to Make Your Copy Do the Selling


Published: November 2, 2020 Author: Jason Holicky - Hometown Design Studio Inc.
The Art of Persuasion: How to Make Your Copy Do the Selling

Most marketing content is meant to be informative, helpful, and work to build trust with an audience while also familiarizing them with your specialties. There are plenty of cautionary tales warning marketers against going too hard for the sale, but in some cases, that’s precisely what you need to do. Because persuasive writing strategies for sales copy are a bit different from those for other marketing copy types, there are a few copywriting techniques to keep in mind to help you get the job done.

What is Sales Copy?

Writing sales copy means creating text that will persuade people to purchase a product or service. It can also be used to nudge potential customers toward a conversion action such as joining your email list, downloading premium content, or requesting more information about a product or service. Sales copy needs to be effective at capturing readers’ attention, making them feel comfortable with you and your solutions, and confident when taking action.

Why is Sales Copy Important?

Marketing strategies are critical for attracting new people to your business. There are strategies for helping people discover your products while using a search engine to solve problems, paths for visitors to take on your website to learn more about your company, tactics for establishing trust, and methods of keeping people engaged while they work their way through your marketing content.

Sales copy serves as the culmination of all those efforts; it is the clincher who comes in at the end of a long ballgame and has only one opportunity to throw a perfect pitch and get the win.

Persuasive Writing Strategies

The Hook

The hook is one of the most critical components of compelling sales copy as its job is to get the reader’s attention and convince them to stay where they are and engage with your pitch. The hook may be found in the headline on a webpage, the subject line of an email, or at the top of a landing page, and the success of your persuasive writing strategies may hinge on these few words.

Know Your Audience

The right hook will depend on who you’re trying to get on the line. You must know what your audience is expecting from your products or services, and you need to have a deep understanding of their pain points and motivators so you can home in on them. The hook also needs to make an emotional appeal to the reader if it’s going to stick. What emotions arise from their pain points? Is it fear, anxiety, frustration, exhaustion, confusion, or some other feeling? Use those emotions—or their opposites—to drive your hook.

For example, PayPal promotes its credit card reader with this hook: Get paid the easy way. By card or contactless. Considering how many merchants have entirely changed the way they do business in 2020, this hook appeals to a variety of fears while also setting people at ease.

Persuasive Strategies

With so much focus on content that is informative, helpful, and ready for the long-game that is content marketing, it can be tricky to make the pivot to writing sales copy that is direct, to the point, and persuasive. Use these copywriting techniques to help drive your sales copy to get better results.

Lead with the Benefit

Remember that benefits are not features; benefits are what someone will gain from features, and they are far more persuasive than a list of what’s in the box. Will your solutions save people time or money? Will they make their jobs easier to do and get the boss off their back? When you lead with what people stand to gain from your products or services, prospects will be able to personally identify with your sales copy and be more open to persuasion.

Pain Points: Raise & Solve

When you raise a pain point in your sales copy, you’re letting people know right away that you know exactly what their problems are. If the next thing they read is that you can fix it, people will be compelled to learn more about living without these persistent issues.

Easy to Read & Relatable

The only thing you want your readers to think about when engaging with your sales copy is making a purchase. You don’t want them to feel impressed with your vocabulary or to snuggle up with a cup of tea for a long read. Instead, sales copy should be concise, written in everyday language, and easy for people to connect with. Use short paragraphs, simple sentences, and plenty of enthusiasm.

Cut the Fluff & Stay On Point

Speaking of being concise, sales copy is not the place for fluff. Remember, you’re trying to build momentum toward a purchase—quickly. There’s no time for a lengthy explanation or to try and sell everything you have to offer. Choose one specific product or service, zero in on the most compelling benefit and matching pain point, and stick to it.

Power Words & Phrases

There are no magic bullets for persuasive writing strategies, but there are words that tend to get better results. Here are just a few to consider:

The Art Of Persuasion
  • You. When your readers see this, they think “me,” and that’s how you make your sales copy personal.
  • Now. Words that create urgency help ignite the need to take action. Other options include hurry, quick, fast, and new.
  • Proven. People like safe choices and things that are proven are safe. Words like easy and simple can also imply safety.
  • Save. Everyone’s eye is on the bottom line and saving is always welcome. Try free, reduced, bonus, and discount, too.
  • Hate. Negative power words can cut right to the chase when identifying pain points. Use them sparingly, and also consider afraid, stress, fail, and lose.

Emotional Connections

Persuasive writing strategies may take up more space than the sales copy itself, but that’s because there’s a lot of work for those words to do and not a lot of time to do it. Remember that human emotions are the best shortcut you have when making connections with other people without needing many words to get there. Consider what’s going wrong in your customers’ lives, how they feel about these problems, and the relief you can provide with your solutions. Address those three points with a bit of excitement and with the fewest and simplest words possible, and your sales copy will be ready to do the selling for you.

Categories: Content Marketing
About the Author

Creative Director Jason co-founded Hometown Design Studio of New Lenox, IL in 2013. He spends his days guiding and consulting industrial clients and small businesses owners on their marketing strategy and projects. Jason enables everyone to be successful and grow their business by sharing his knowledge and experience.
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