8 Useful Copywriting Tips Every Startup Needs to Know
September 27, 2019
Copywriting is one skill that eludes startup founders. And here’s why:
Creating a viable product for your customers isn’t an easy task. A lot of blood, sweat, tears, money and sleepless nights have gone into it that it’s now become a part of your very being. It’s all you talk about to anyone who’d listen. And when you do, it’s often about the nitty-gritty technical aspects of your product.
That’s great! Except that your customers aren’t necessarily as tech-savvy as you. So this kind of information confuses or overwhelms them. Either way, it doesn’t help your conversion rates.
Why do startup founders need to learn to copywrite? Most startup founders would solve this problem by hiring a copywriter.
Nothing’s wrong with that. In fact, it’ll even be a worthy investment because you can focus on fine-tuning your product.
Still, it’s crucial that you develop your copywriting skills.
Because even the best copywriter you can hire won’t have the same level of passion, enthusiasm and knowledge about your startup and product as you do. You just have to know how to properly communicate this to your customers so that they share the sentiments.
That said, here are eight tips for writing copy that’ll attract and convert your customers.
1. Make Solving Your Customer’s Problems the Focus of Your Copy
People search online to find answers and solutions. This is clearly seen with Google’s search results. From Featured Snippets, to Knowledge Panels and the “People Also Ask” menu box, Google is helping its users solve their problems or answer their questions.
So, what does this mean for you and your startup?
Simple: If you want to convert more visitors into paying customers, your copy should focus on how your product is the answer to that problem that’s keeping them up at night.
For example, TurboTax understands that no one enjoys doing their taxes or filling up legal forms. At the same time, they know how much their customers would love a big fat tax refund. TurboTax then used this understanding to come up with this copy on their homepage:
Sending out surveys is also an effective and efficient way to learn more about your customer’s pain points. It’ll also show you what words your customers use to describe both the problem they’re facing and the solution they desire. Injecting these keywords in your copy will make this more relatable to them because you’re now speaking their language.
2. Blend Logic and Emotion to Make Your Copy Appealing and Convincing
Our brains are divided into two hemispheres: the logical side and the emotional side. Copy that converts customers caters to both, starting with the emotional side since emotions drive your customers to decide what to buy.
Storytelling is an effective way to appeal to your customer’s emotions. A study done by Professor Paul Zak shows that stories not only make it easier for people to understand your message but make them more memorable.
At the same time, including statistics and quantitative data help reinforce your copy’s credibility and brings in 9x more leads.
The reason is that your customers perceive your claims to be more credible and trustworthy if you can back it up with data. This copy by Slack is a great example.
3. Optimize Your Copy for Search Engines Using Localized Keyword Phrases
94% of organic traffic comes from Google search. Of these, 46% of them are from searches using localized keywords.
The difference between a regular long-tailed keyword phrase and a localized keyword phrase is the addition of a specific geographic location.
Including local keywords within your copy increases its alignment with your ideal customer profile. Now, your site traffic will have more qualified visitors for your startup you can now convert into customers.
4. Address Objections Your Customers Have to Get Them off the Fence
You may believe with your heart and soul that your product will solve your customer’s problems. However, your customers aren’t easily swayed. There are other startups and tech companies out there offering products similar to yours. And your customers know that.
So the moment they arrive on your sales page and read your copy, your customers brought with them their bag of questions and objections. That said, you need to make sure that your copy empties that bag so that it’s got room for your product.
Here are some ways to address your customer’s objections in your copy:
Add testimonials from your existing customers
Good old-fashioned word of mouth advertising in the form of recommendations and referrals is still the best way to build up your product’s credibility and win your customers’ trust.
Also, it’s not just from people your customers personally know. Studies show that up to 90% of your customers will take the word of industry leaders, social media influencers and even their competitors when it comes to choosing which product to buy.
When your prospects see these testimonials, they’ll think, “If these people are happy about the way this product works and the results they’re getting, it can also happen to me.”
Highlight your existing customers
If you’re running a B2B startup, including logos of companies like this help your prospects get off the fence in two ways.
First, it speaks volumes about your product’s quality, especially if established brands are using your product.
Second, it’s a way of capitalizing on FOMO (Fear of Missing Out). People crave belonging and acceptance, even key decision-makers of the companies you’re targeting. When they see that prestigious brands and their competitors are using your product, it’ll drive them to take action because they don’t want to be left behind.
Answer common questions
Sometimes, the reason your prospects don’t convert is because their questions weren’t answered.
Providing answers to those questions you frequently get from those interested in your product will help shorten your sales cycle and boost your conversion rates.
You can look for these questions by going through your CRM and reviewing conversations your sales team had with prospects that converted into customers. Take note of patterns such as how they phrased questions and how your sales team answered them. Use this as a guide when you write the FAQ section of your copy.
5. Group Your Sales Pages into Clusters
Brands often use the Topic Cluster Model as part of their content marketing strategy. It’s an excellent copywriting technique to use to highlight the different features of your product. It also helps you organize the presentation of different products, enhancing your website’s user experience. Here’s why:
The way how the Topic Cluster model works is that you have a pillar page that contains an overview of a particular topic. Then, you create in-depth blog posts for each of the subtopics within the pillar page. You then link all of these to each other, so the structure looks something like this.
LeadPages’ product page is an example of the Topic Cluster model in use. The first thing you’ll see on their Product page are links to different products. When you click on one of the products, you get a brief overview of the product along with a link inviting you to learn more about it.
Clicking on that link then takes you to a page that gives you more details about the product that piqued your interest.
With this model, you’re providing your prospects with all the information they need to make an informed decision without running the risk of overwhelming them. At the same time, linking your different pages to one pillar page helps rank higher for your targeted keywords, making these more accessible for your prospects.
6. It’s Okay to Outsource
As a startup founder, you’re the ideal person to write your copy because you know your products and business inside-out. And no one’s going to be as passionate in talking about it than you. But let’s face it, even though you may wear lots of hats, writing may not be one of them.
If you’re not confident about your writing skills, getting an SEO copywriter to do this for you will be a worthwhile investment. Not only will it be less frustrating, but you’re also sure that it’s properly optimized to rank in Google and other search engines.
7. A/B Test Your Page Design
When running an A/B test, make sure that you test only one element at a time. Tedious, yes. However, at the same time, necessary. Doing this helps you properly design your sales page so that it’ll give you the maximum potential outcome when it goes live.
8. Review Your Code to Avoid Embarrassing Errors
After all the hard work you’ve put into writing your copy, nothing’s more frustrating or embarrassing than getting feedback from potential customers that your page’s not loading correctly or there are snippets of code appearing on the text.
Since your customers have their preferred browser and device to use, make sure that you test your sales page by reviewing how it looks on each browser. Run it on your desktop and mobile devices as well. You should also make sure that you test every link to confirm that it not only goes to the right page, but also loads quickly.
Copywriting Is a Skill That’s Critical to Your Startup’s Growth and Success
The copywriting tips shared in this article won’t instantly transform your startup into a unicorn overnight (because there’s no such thing). However, it will provide you with incremental results that’ll exponentiate over time. Effective copywriting is all about focusing on your customers by solving their pain points by providing them a solution and addressing their concern. It’s this that will compel them to take action.