Copywriting Tips – Are You Sure You Want to Be a Copywriter?
The grass is always greener on the other side. If that isn’t one of the biggest cliches in the world, I’ll eat my hat. Truth is, there is a lot to that cliche. When it comes to copywriting or doing other things, more than you realize. So the question I’m asking in this article is a simple one. Are you SURE you want to be a copywriter? No, this isn’t a trick question. After you are done reading this article, you’ll understand why I’m asking it.
What you probably don’t know about me is that I am also a marketer. In fact, I was a marketer before I become a copywriter, at least professionally. Oh yes, I always wrote my own copy, but never offered my services to others until recently. And when I did, I discovered something absolutely amazing. In fact, it was so fascinating that it made me wonder why I do this copywriting thing at all. Let me explain.
I can sit down and crank out a limited run product at 100 units in about 8 hours and make about $3,000 from it. That comes out to close to $400 per hour of work, which isn’t too shabby. Now, I’m not a high end copywriter by any stretch of the imagination as far as price goes. But when I calculate how long it takes me to go over a product, in order to write the copy for it, and then actually write the copy, I figured out that I’m making about $50 for an hour of work.
Do you see the problem here? Naturally, if you’re not a marketer and writing is all you can do, you’ll take it and gladly. But think about it. There are easier ways to make a buck online. I can think of many jobs that pay more than $50 per hour of work. And with some copywriting jobs, the amount of work, because of extra bonuses to go over, brings your hourly pay down to that of a McDonald’s fry cook. Think I’m kidding? I’m not.
Point is, while being a copywriter is certainly a glamorous profession, and while there is a certain excitement about seeing your sales letter rake in the sales for somebody, if you’re thinking this is an easy way to riches, you might want to reconsider this as a that I’m trying to discourage you. I just want you to realize that all is not roses on this side of the fence.
As I am quickly finding out.
To YOUR Success,
Steven Wagenheim…Read more
Improve Your Search Engine Rankings With Off-Page Optimization Techniques
The paradigm of internet marketing has been transformed at the greater extent with the inception of search engine optimization techniques. SEO experts therefore apply a number of unique tools and techniques to optimize online business websites. Off-page optimization is such a process that accommodates numerous optimization activities that are implemented to offer much more influence to the web pages in the prominent search engines like Yahoo, Google and Bing. Let’s go through some of the primary components of off-page optimization used by the search engine optimizers and internet marketers.
Link Building: The art of inbound link building is primarily focused on exchanging quality inbound links from some relevant websites of good page rank. If experts are to be believed, link building is the most important strategy that paves the path for effective search engine marketing. Since millions of webs pages are doing round, it’s very important create high value back links for your websites. Being a newbie link building professional you should take guidance from an expert SEO person to create quality back links from the reputed and relevant websites to improve Google Page Rank.
Click Density: This is another quick and highly efficient off-page optimization calculates the matrices in which the links are followed in the prominent search engines. The HTML Meta tags in the source code of the websites help to improve the Click Density of the links. As an SEO expert you may also use the process of article submission to create rich click density for the websites.
Article Submission: During the process of article submission, optimization experts write a number of articles in the different niches and submit it in different article directories and other submission resources. During submission of an article, users can create their own links back to the web pages to increasing search engine rankings. If the pages from where inbound links are obtained has high PR, the prominence of your websites and associated pages also get high value and worth.
Directory Submission: Very like the article submission, directory submission allows submission of the web pages with small summary in several web directories. If you submit your site URLs in directories using proper anchor text with proper categories that are relevant and related to your website niche, it helps to increase your website’s search engine rankings rapidly.
Blog Commenting: Another innovative method of off-page optimization is Blog commenting that enables bloggers to write blogs and description about the services and products their websites are based on. Apart from the blog posts, blog commenting can also be the best tool for creating regular and quality back links for the websites. Bloggers post their comments on other blog sites with their anchor text links to create the reciprocal links for the website.…Read more
The Four U Formula to Writing Intriguing Headlines
It’s no secret that nearly 80% of people who stumble upon your words will never get past the headline.
People are busy and are constantly in a state of information overload. Rather than read every email, sales letter, blog post, and article they come across, they quickly scan headlines to see whether what you’ve written is worthy of their time and attention.
In order to keep them reading, you have to first pique their interest with an intriguing, benefit-laden headline.
And as you might imagine, this is easier said than done.
But the “Four U” copywriting formula can help. So next time you write a headline, consider these four qualities:
Urgent: Urgency gives the reader a reason to act now rather than later. This is critical because if they don’t get to your article, blog post, or sales letter right away, your reader will most likely forget about it altogether.
The easiest way to suggest urgency is to incorporate a time element in your headline. For instance, “Make $100,000 Writing Articles From Home This Year,” is more urgent than “Make $100,000 Working From Home.”
Unique: A powerful headline should suggest that what it’s offering is in some way different from everything else of its type.
So, this means your headline should either say something new, or say something that’s been said before in a fresh and exciting way.
What’s more, all claims made in your headline should be uniquely associated with your product or service (not anyone else’s).
As an example, the headline, “Earn 100,000 Air Miles in 3 Months Using This Simple Trick” is unique because it’s talking about a specific trick which will be described in the body copy. “Earn Extra Air Miles Using Credit Cards” is not because it could be talking about almost anything and doesn’t describe anything unique or specific.
Creating a unique headline is more important than ever in the age of the Internet, because people are always searching for something new and don’t want to read what they feel they’ve heard before.
Ultra-specific: The more specific your headline, the more believable it will be–and the more likely your headline will encourage your reader to continue reading.
The headline, “Free White Paper,” is vague and won’t create much interest, despite something being offered at no cost. But saying, “Free White Paper on How to Take Better Indoor Digital Photographs” will presumably attract a lot of photographers.
The more specific you can be in your headline, the better.
Useful: Adding usefulness to a headline means offering a benefit to the reader. What will she get out of reading your article?
The headline, “How to Lose Weight Exercising in Less Than 15 Minutes a Day,” offers the clear benefit of knowledge–as in once the reader finishes the article, she will suddenly know how to lose weight by exercising in under 15 minutes a day.
Be clear about the benefit you’re offering and never try and trick or mislead your reader by offering a benefit in the headline but then talking about something else completely in the body copy.
What to do next
Once you’ve written your headline, go through each of the characteristics and ask yourself how strong it is in each of the four U’s. Use a scale of 1 to 4 (1 = weak, 4 = strong). Categorizing at.5 is also acceptable.
Ideally, your headline should rank at a 3 or 4 on a minimum of 3 of the four U’s. If not, your headline isn’t near as strong as it could be, and could benefit from some rewriting.
Use the Four U formula in email subject lines, sales letters, blog posts, articles, advertisements, and more to create powerful copy that grabs your prospect in and keeps her reading.…Read more
Web Copywriting Tips – 5 Tips to Boost Conversions
As attention spans continue to dwindle, it’s extremely important that you do whatever you can to keep your visitors on your web page as long as possible. The longer your visitors stay on your page, the more likely they are to get drawn into your copy and that will always boost your conversion rate.
Here are 5 tips to boost your conversions:
1. Make sure your website is professional in its appearance and easy on the eyes. Now, I’m not saying you have to spend big bucks on your website graphics but it shouldn’t look like it was created by a six-year-old kid with a crayon. Also, use an easy-to-ready font (like Arial, Helvetica or Tahoma) for the majority of your site’s content and don’t make the font size too small. Lastly, use plenty of “white space” by writing in short paragraphs and using a decent-sized margin between the edge of your website template and your copy.
2. Ensure your main headline is big, bold and lists the primary benefit of your product or service. Your headline should immediately grab the attention of your visitor and let them know there is value in reading more. This is done by making your headline bigger (and bolder) than the rest of your copy and by letting them know what benefit they can expect from your product or service. It’s said that about 80% of your visitors’ decision has already been made after reading the headline. That’s why it’s extremely important that you write the best headline you can and test a variety of headlines against each other to see which truly speaks to your market.
3. Use a “drop cap” at the start of your opening paragraph. A “drop cap” is a large letter that is used to start your opening paragraph. It’s been used in the magazine industry for many years and has been proven to improve readership. For best results, use a font that is tall enough to span at least three lines of your regular text, is a different font type from your main content and a different color as well.
4. One of the most important web copywriting tips is to use some “personalization” elements to make your content appear more personal and less commercial. Direct mail marketers have been doing this for a very long time and it works just as well online. Elements like handwritten looking fonts and graphics that look like the writer has “scribbled” on the page enhance this personal feel and keep the eye glued to the page.
5. Use “sub-headlines” (aka sub-heads) that are big, bold and tell the main part of your “story.” Most readers will scan your copy rather than read it word-for-word so these sub-heads are of prime importance. They help to highlight the main benefits of your offer and are large enough that “scanners” are likely to read them. Putting all five of these tips to use will help you keep your readers on your page longer and increase your conversions as a direct result.…Read more
SEO – On-Site Optimization With Internal Links
Most webmasters dealing with website optimization are focused on keywords, header tags, meta tags, building backlinks, etc. Baclinks have two very important properties: anchor text and “nofollow” attribute. Both properties define quality and value of any link. Website owners spend a lot of time searching for various opportunities to get external links from pages with high PageRank. Those links can significantly contribute to popularity of the website. Usually links with the “nofollow” attribute are considered as less valuable. But this is not the right thinking. In most cases you can easily ignore this attribute–simply focus on the link text. Because link text explains what the page is about, link texts like “click here” or “on this page” are of little use for page optimization. There is nothing you can do if this happens on other websites. Fortunately, there is one group of links where you have all the freedom for anchor text and nofollow attribute–internal links.
Internal links are those which are present on our pages, in menus and various navigations. For all elements on the website we have total control and therefore we can choose anchor texts and whether the nofollow attribute will be present or not. This means that with carefully chosen words we can help both human visitors, web spiders, bots and web crawlers to understand what is on the page where the link is pointing. It sounds simple but most websites are not using the whole power of links. On-page optimization is more than keyword frequency–the whole content describes the page. Every single on-page element, either visible or invisible, contributes to the description of the page.
A typical example of internal link with generic anchor text is the Home button, menu item or link. There is absolutely nothing wrong if you have a quick way to the homepage. But is some cases it would be possible to slightly modify this text to more accurately describe the home page, for example with the name of the website or any other suitable phrase. The same applies to all menu items and other links on the page. Try to use words or phrases that most accurately describe target pages. Avoid links with text “click here”. Modify the sentence to include appropriate text to link to another page. Even for links that point to external pages it makes sense to create meaningful anchor texts. This will never hurt your website and others will appreciate it. Internal links count as externals do. If you have a high PageRank internal page, links on it will transfer this “reputation” to other internal pages.…Read more
Copywriting Tips – Five Tips to Write More Persuasive Copy
Here are five simple, yet effective tips to help you write more persuasive copy.
Always write “to” your reader and not “at” them. Your copy should relate well to your reader and speak their language. The more you know about your prospective market… their problems, fears and desires, the better your copy will relate to them.
Grab your readers’ attention right away! Whether you are writing a sales letter or a promotional email, you have little time to convince your readers’ to keep reading. That’s why it is so important that your headlines and subject lines captivate your readers and highlight the benefits of your product or service.
Use bullets that highlight benefits and not just features. Many readers’ will scan your copy rather than read it word for word. For this reason, it’s important you use short “bullets” that get right to the heart of the matter and tell the reader “what’s in it for them.”
Use time-tested persuasion tactics to boost response rates. While there are many things that can improve your response rates, two tactics have been proven to work again and again. First, you want to “remove risk” by offering a genuine satisfaction guarantee. Some marketers may want to shy away from this but the truth is, your customers are likely to get a refund if they complain to their credit card company anyway so you might as well offer a great guarantee. It eases concerns, removes a potential barrier and increases conversion rates. This is one of the most important copywriting tips.
In addition to this, anything you can do to add an element of “scarcity” to your offer will boost responsiveness as well. You might consider offering a limited number of items, running a sale with a definitive ending date or anything that can cause your readers to “lose out” if they don’t take action right away.
Make your “call to action” clear and obvious. This is where many marketers blow it! They write a pretty good piece of sales copy that highlights the benefits of the product and then they “chicken out” when it comes time to “ask for the sale.” Don’t make this mistake… make your calls-to-action clear and assertive. Don’t be afraid to “spell out” exactly what you would like the reader to do next!
Whatever you are trying to sell or promote, these five copywriting tips will help you write copy that will get read more often and make more sales!…Read more
The difference between the annual zakah (obligatory charity) and the zakat al-fitr (charity given at the end of the fasting month of Ramadan)
Praise be allah
Yes, the obligatory charity (zakah) that constitutes one of the pillars of Islam, is different from that paid at the end of the fasting month of Ramadan (zakat al-fitr).
The first is a fixed percentage that applies only to a certain class of goods:
1 – Cattle (camels, sheep, etc.)
2 – Gold and silver, and currently, paper money.
3 – Tradable goods.
4 – The products of the land, which includes two classes:
to. Harvests and fruits. Scholars unanimously agree that it is obligatory to pay this annual charity on four crops: wheat, barley, dates, and raisins; and they differ from other classes.
b. Buried treasures, that is, riches buried by someone and found by a Muslim.
Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allaah have mercy on him) narrated in Maymu ‘al-Fataawa (10/25) that Ibn al-Mundhir (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:
Scholars agree that it is obligatory to pay zakah on nine things: camels, cattle, sheep, gold, silver, wheat, barley, dates and other raisins, if they reach the minimum threshold (nisáb) of each type to which zakah is applied. And they differ from other types of wealth.
The zakah for each of these types of goods is obligatory subject to certain conditions, and according to the wealth it must be given as charity to a specific amount of this wealth.
See Donate Zakat for more information.
This annual charity is one of the five pillars of Islam. Whoever denies it is an unbeliever, and whoever refuses to pay it to the poor is a rebel and a criminal; the Muslim ruler must remove it by force. If he persists in withholding this charity and is protected by his family or tribe, then war must be waged on him until he repays it.
Al-Bukhaari (8) and Muslim (12) narrated that ‘Abd-Allaah ibn’ Umar said: “I have heard that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:“ Islam was built on five things (pillars): witness that there is no divinity other than Allah and that Muhammad is His Messenger, establish daily prayer, pay zakah, fast in Ramadhan and make the pilgrimage to the Old House (the temple of Mecca) ”.
Al-Bukhaari (25) and Muslim (22) narrated from Ibn ‘Umar that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: that there is no divinity other than God and that Muhammad is His Messenger, establish prayer and pay zakah. If they do, then they have protected their blood and riches from me except where the law applies, and their accountability is only due to Allah. “
His companions (may Allaah be pleased with them) unanimously agreed to fight those who refuse to pay zakah. Al-Bukhaari (1400) and Muslim (20) narrated that Abu Hurairah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: “When the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) passed away and Abu Bakr (may Allaah be pleased with him) he became caliph, some of the Arabs did apostasy and rebelled, and ‘Umar (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: How would you fight against these people, when the Messenger of Allaah (who peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said “I have been ordered to insist to the people until they bear witness that there is no divinity other than God. And whoever testifies to this, protect your blood and wealth from me except in cases where Islamic law applies, and your accountability will be with Allah alone ”?”. Then Abu Bákr said: By Allah, I am going to fight against those who try to separate prayer from charity, because charity is a duty of those who have wealth. By Allaah, if they keep a small sheep from what they used to give in the time of Allaah’s Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), I will wage war on them. ” “‘Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: By Allaah, when I realized that Abu Bakr (may Allaah be pleased with him) was sure of this, then I knew that was the truth.” Then Abu Bákr said: By Allah, I am going to fight against those who try to separate prayer from charity, because charity is a duty of those who have wealth. By Allaah, if they keep a small sheep from what they used to give in the time of Allaah’s Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), I will wage war on them. ” “‘Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: By Allaah, when I realized that Abu Bakr (may Allaah be pleased with him) was sure of this, …Read more