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4 tips for writing good copy

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Entrepreneurial authors understand the tenets of good copywriting. Not necessarily because they have to write their own copy, although many do, but because they need to recognize it when they see it. If you don’t know good copy when you see it, you may undermine your business, make poor hiring choices of copywriters and experience lagging sales. Whether you are promoting your business to locals in Long Beach or across the nation or globe, being able to write good copy is an essential skill.

1. The first thing you need to know is … your subject. You need to understand all the benefits, features and drawbacks of the product or service you are writing about. You can’t bluff this in sales copy.

2. Then you need to understand your target audience. Who are you writing this copy to persuade? Knowing your audience will help you use the right words, tell the right stories and illustrate with the right examples to convey your message effectively.

3. Pay attention to grammar. Get your copy proofed so that misspellings, typos and mis-congugated verbs don’t get through. Making too many mistakes (glaring or otherwise) can undermine your message and your authority.

3. Write and format your copy for both readers and scanners. Not everyone who comes across your copy will read every word. There are many who just scan the headlines to get the gist, reading your carefully crafted copy only occasionally. Headlines serve multiple purposes: they introduce what you’ll be talking about next, they summarize the content of your message (important for reaching scanners), and they break up the copy into manageable chunks (critical for reading on the Web). Don’t be too clever — your headlines need to communicate your message just as effectively as the rest of your copy.

4. Write more like you speak. You are not writing a formal essay or research journal article, so make your copy conversational. Believe it or nor, for most business purposes, conversational copy is actually more effective. Write like you would talk to a friend (leaving out the ums, ahs and gesticulating hands), but avoid using jargon … unless that is what your readers need.

When your copy meets these guidelines, it has a much better chance of getting the intended job done.

Are you an entrepreneurial author? Do you want to be? Are you ready to build your business and platform so that it expresses your creativity, conveys your worth and message authentically and is profitable? Visit www.carmaspence.com to learn more.

NOTE: Are you a writer, author or editor connected to Long Beach in some way? Please contact me ... and you can be a part of my series of profiles of local writers!

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