If you’re in business and you don’t feel that your promotional efforts are doing their job, learning how to write better marketing materials might solve a lot of your problems.
No, you don’t need to take a college course in English or read 100 books. What you need to do is get a handle on how you’re communicating with your audience.
While each delivery method (digital, print, video, audio and all their sub-varieties) involves a unique writing approach, all efforts to engage an audience must be built upon universal elements of effectiveness. If you want to know how to write better marketing materials, here are six good places to start.
1. Write better marketing materials by making sure your message is sound
Your marketing message can be written many different ways, but all those ways must reinforce a central selling point. It’s understood that copywriting is selling in print, and in order to sell, you’ve got to give people a reason to buy. Consumers always want to know what’s in it for them, and it’s your job to make sure your message answers the question in an appropriate way.
2. Write to the correct audience
When writing to sell anything, you’re doing one of three things.
1. Selling people who are prepared to buy
2. Convincing people who are on the fence about whether they should buy from you
3. Attempting to convert those who don’t care but could if they had a big enough reason
Ideally, you should be speaking to only one of these audiences in each marketing piece.
3. Use the appropriate level of energy
The energy in your writing has to match what the audience is expecting. A video script for a late-night infomercial selling a get-rich-quick real estate plan will require a different energy level than a printed donation request from Feed the Children. What you’re selling and the type of audience will dictate the appropriate energy in the message.
4. Speak the right language
Slang speech that’s hip and cool might work well for skateboarders, tattoo aficionados and Selena Gomez fans. For an estate-planning law firm or a funeral parlor, you’ll want to walk a pretty straight line. In other words, write the way your audience thinks. Consider also the educational level of your audience and write in a way that generally matches it.
5. Include an appropriate call to action
A critical element in learning how to write better marketing materials is mastering the call to action. Every piece needs a call to action that’s usually direct but sometimes implied and tells the reader/listener/watcher in no uncertain terms what to do next. The nature of the message and makeup of the audience will determine how to structure your directions for follow-through.
6. To write better marketing materials, think “clarity”
No matter what literary styles you use, your writing has to be clear. This means strings of understandable words that transition well without any stall points, which cause the reader to break from the flow and think, “I’m not sure what this person is saying.” When readers hit a stall point, there’s a 50-percent chance you’ll lose them. When you lead them safely through the entire piece, the odds of conversion are in your favor.
Put these six tips on how to write better marketing materials to work for you today and be prepared for better results.