Copywriting Tips – Grab Attention And Get To The Point

No matter what type of copy you need to write – from a sales letter to a web page or an email marketing message – there are two important things to keep in mind. These are grabbing attention and getting to the point quickly, before the reader’s attention is lost.

Use these copywriting tips to keep all your written copy fresh, interesting, and likely to get read all the way through to the last line.

Copywriting Tips The Headline

The natural place to start is with the headline, or title, of your copy. This is the most important text you will write because if the headline doesn’t grab someone’s attention, they are unlikely to scroll down and read the content.

Three good ways of writing headlines that get results are; posing a question (Do You Know How to…), stating a call to action (Save Money Today By…), or posting a snippet of a customer testimonial (Sports Legend Calls Our Equipment “Fantastic”!).

The Meta Description Or Subtitle

Next, spend some time crafting a good meta description or subtitle for your blog post, article, or web page. This should expand on the information included in the title and focus on teasing the reader into finding out more.

Maybe your blog post title reads ‘Do You Know How to Save Money on Groceries?’ A good meta description, which will appear on search engine results pages and in the archival listing on your site would be ‘Using these 10 tips is guaranteed to trim your monthly grocery bill by $100 or more’. Who wouldn’t want to read more about that?

The Body

The body of your letter, message, blog post, or article contains the real ‘meat’ of your marketing efforts. This is where you provide the information teased in the headline and subtitle. Always give the reader a hint of what follows in the very first paragraph.

Don’t make the mistake of going on and on about how great your company is before you finally get around to writing the text that offers value to the reader. You can – and should mention this, but keep your sales pitch to a minimum and focus on the benefit to the consumer instead.

One good approach is to use a case study. Going along with sample given above, you might tell the story of a neighbour with six kids who was constantly in debt due to the large amount spent at the grocery store to feed all those children. Then relate how this person used the tips in your eBook to save enough money to start a college fund for each one. Most people can relate to this situation and they will want to learn more – and hopefully buy your book.

Another approach is to treat your copy like a press release or news story. Present the situation (an award given to your company, an act of benevolence, a new product) and then answer the traditional reporter’s questions of what, when, why, how, who, and where.

You can’t go wrong by writing about interesting subjects or providing valuable information in all your online copy. Remember the value proposition to prospective clients. Show how your products or services will enhance their life in some way, and get to the point quickly.

By following the above copywriting tips, there’s a fair chance you will pique the readers interest right from the start and more of your online content will get read… right through to the end.

About Sean Rasmussen

I am a passionate blogger and have been a full time internet marketer since 2005. When I'm not with my family, you will find me doing SEO, building websites for many of my clients, and creating products out of thin air! This is a cool gig and I love it!

Comments

  1. Hi Sean,
    Thanks for the great tips and examples of how to create attention grabbing content.

    Creating an interesting Title is obviously the one of the most important skill to learn, with so much information and content online, readers tend to scan till they find something that grabs their attention. So copyrighting is definitely an area I’m keen to learn more about.

  2. Hi Sean,
    As an online marketer I am keen to learn as much as I can about increasing my copywriting skills.

    I will now be looking for attention grabbing headlines to get ideas on what to use in sales letter.

    Thanks so much for the helpful tips.

  3. Jazz Salinger says:

    Hi Sean,

    I’ve been experimenting with writing attention grabbing headlines but I still have a ways to go. I have also been thinking about taking a course in copywriting as I really feel it would be very beneficial.

    I think the bottom line is that there are so many blogs for people to choose to read. I need to spend more time learning to write in a much more entertaining way if I ever hope to capture some of the market.

  4. Great tips Sean. The importance of a good headline is paramount. Finding a great interesting headline that’s also SEO friendly is the key. A fine balance indeed. Meta descriptions also contribute to click through rates – as they expand and support the copy text and give people a reason to click through.

  5. Hi Sean,

    I guess the importance of a great headline can’t be stressed enough.

    You might have written the worlds best article but if nobody knows about it it’s not worth a lot. So people need to be able to find it and need to be interested enough to click through and read it. And the only way to get them there is with a great, catchy headline.

    Unfortunately I have found people who write great headlines for mediocre or bad articles …

  6. If you’re looking for a workbook on this I’d highly recommend getting The Copy Workshop Workbook – it’s amazing!

  7. Trish Rock says:

    I have come to realise over the past months that copywriting is one of the most important tools we have to learn! All the best internet marketers have the best headlines! Funny that ;-) Thanks for the tips Sean and I will definitely be putting them into action. :-)

  8. This is a great article for everyone because you could have the best product in the world and not know how to copy write; therefore, your product won’t be sold. I know in the body of my posts I need to put catchy sub-headlines to keep the reader entertained as well instead of them just looking at a huge block of text.

    I also find that people seem to like links for keywords in your post so they can have another place to go to find more information on that keyword that they’re interested in. This also increases the time they spend on your site.

  9. The first thing I learnt in my internet marketing education is good copywriting skills is paramount. I suppose the more we practice the better we will get (I hope). The headline in your post is the first thing people will read so thats the key to getting people to stay on your site a little longer.

  10. Hi Sean,
    I good headline is everything. I was submitting a blog to a social media site the other day and for some reason it was being rejected, I changed the name to: “Make My Day” and it appeared to be instantly popular and accepted on-line.

    I’m wondering. Does good copy ideas become outdated like many on-line applications and needing updating regularly? I have an Ebook on, “Power Copywriting For The Internet” that is nearly 2 years old and I’m wondering if the content would be still considered up to date and to be of any use still.

    Thank-you.

  11. Tara McGhee says:

    Copywriting is an essential skill. Basically we are writing for publication. The above points are crucial.

    It seems good copywriting (like good service) seems to be optional. Let’s all stand out for the RIGHT reasons!

    The public is discerning, like Jazz says there are many options out there.

    Here are the most persuasive words used in advertising (as researched by Yale) to use for headlines: achieve, gain, win, secret, avoid, special, easy, health, earn, discover, love, free, unique, amazing, profit, save, news, results, you, get and magic.

    • Hi Tara,

      Thank-you for the great list of the most persuasive words used in advertising. I’ll be trying a few of those in my headlines. It’ll be interesting to see how much it improves my results.

  12. Hi Sean,

    I totally agree with what you have to say about attention grabbing headlines, great content and the art of writing good copy. I think all these skills will be honed with practice, and I also agree that a course in copy writing would be of great benefit for anyone in this industry.

    What you are teaching me here Sean is exceptionally valuable as long as I take action…

    Thanks Tara for your inclusion of pwerful words to use, I am very grateful to you for that information.

    John Carlton offers a 3 part free (short) course in copy writing from time to time. Try this link folks
    http://www.simplewritingsystem.com/blog/sws-explained/

    Blessings
    Elly

  13. Apologies, I left the ‘o’ out of powerful. I wonder if anyone read it as ‘pewerful’ (lol)

  14. Again great info Sean, teasing is good fun…lol

    The cold hard truth if you get the customer to your site the last thing you want to do is lose them in that first paragraph or so, by waffling on about someone the customer didnt come to read.

  15. I really like the idea of using a case study to get peoples attention to a topic. I know personally case studies help me learn and I can relate to them more than most other forms of information.

    Getting peoples attention is one thing, keeping them informed is another.
    thanks for this article.

  16. This particular article on copywriting has given me a good stucture to use on blogging. Excellent. Thanks, Sean.

  17. Also, make sure that you include keywords in the Titles – because people don’t google headlines, they google keywords!

    • Most definitely Anthony. In fact, if you do not have your main keywords in your title you may like to have a re-think, as you will not be explaining the content very well without them on most occasions ;-)

  18. G’day Sean,
    What a great lot of comments already on this post. Thanks to the commenters.

    Been OK with headlines and the body , but hadn’t thought of a subtitle until reading this. Keyword in the title is obviously paramount, along with excellent content which is attention grabbing, good spelling, good grammar and punctuation.
    Cheers
    Harry

  19. Hey Sean,

    In the past, I’ve bought quite a few ‘products’ online from some some of the gurus. Obviously, once I’ve gotten on to their mailing lists, I receive the promotional email, which will either claim my interest or not. If does, I click through. Generally, I’ll read the headline and the subtitle and then maybe the first few paragraphs. Then I spend the next ten seconds scolling down through endless copy most of which supposedly tries to ‘sell’ me on the item, when my interest has already been captured in the first few paragraphs. What I need to know then is what it’s going to cost.

    I realise this long sales pitch is part of a formula, but would you say that that formula is now old school and heading into the area of archaic? To me, these kind of sales letters are a waste of both my time, and the poor person who actually had to write it (be it the owner of the site or the person he/she outsourced it to).

    Is this typical reaction from people, or am I on the outer edges of the Bell Curve?

    Just a thought!

    Cheers,

    Pete

    • The long written sales pitches seem to be slowly fading away Pete, the use of video marketing is getting more popular all the time.

      • I must agree here, I used to read into those long sales letters a year ago but know I am really turned off by them… they really seem to drag.

        I’ve also noticed a lot more video promotions coming through, especially in the last few months via emails & I guess it is a lot more appealing to just sit back & watch a video than to scroll through a billion words down a page lol : P

  20. Cathy and Trevor Howitt says:

    I had to laugh at the example you used Sean…….”you might tell the story of a neighbour with six kids who was constantly in debt due to the large amount spent at the grocery store to feed all those children. Then relate how this person used the tips in your eBook to save enough money to start a college fund for each one.”

    I might just have to buy that eBook seeing as I have 6 kids!!!!!

    How does video marketing work exactly?

    I agree with Pete. I scroll past all of the “stuff” in the sales letter. I’m just interested in the price (if the first few paragraphs and title have “caught” my attention.

    However, the copywriting tips were great!
    Cath

  21. Jody Chambers says:

    Great article on copywriting Sean. As Peter was saying I was still under the impression that you need a sales letter where you just scrolled and scrolled and scrolled and scrolled……and scrolled to sell your product. Now I see by your example just capture their interest and get straight to the point.

  22. Thanks Sean,

    Writing attention grabbing content is a very important part of generating content & must make all the difference when it comes to converting readers into buyers. I am a fan of using questions in my headlines but I’m not always sure about where to go with the article body so these tips are very helpful!

  23. Getting your copywriting nearly perfect is so important and these tips really help with getting that done. I read all your articles to the end trying to absorb everything you have written and often go back and re-read sections…………so….that obviously means that you have got the formula right!

  24. Absolutely! Some emails I get, I am curious about the subject line and they have grabbed my attention, but then they let me down, it’s so long and boring. I’m left wondering when they’ll get to the point. The result – I just hit the delete button. People dont have the time or attention spans to stick to long boring stories.

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