British Author Kingsley Amis: “If you can’t annoy somebody, there is little point in writing.”
The ah-ha moment for modern copywriters.
Once upon a time before the internet we had radio, television and printed advertisements [magazines, newspapers brochures etc.] The advertisement world then and now uses words to inform and sell. The folks of the hour were the Copywriters!
Along came the internet and things changed. The first ones to use the internet were the techies who exchanged information. The next folks to use the internet were us regular folk who wanted to keep in touch with our friends and family and to find information. They came online as real folks and showed their personality.
A company could set its brick & mortar location off from others by its physical design and pretty brochure pictures. But, on the internet, especially in the earlier days most web sites had similar formats. To this day the smart web sites do not over use the plug-ins and fancy downloads – as customers can get impatient with the slow downloads and move on.
The question becomes: “How do I become set apart from others – How am I or my product/service unique – how do I show it?” By having a strong character and a strong and honest down to earth voice will you stand out from the crowd.
Offline businesses tend to be cautious and bland touting the specs of their product. The cautious, bland writing is the type most often taught to web designers. But, online they need to show off their unique character, strong beliefs to be noticed. Many don’t get it, even now.
Copywriters were left behind at the onset of the internet as the techies and web designers were the kings of the internet. The copywriters are working hard to catch up with the humanity of the new internet copywriting. The good internet copywriter strives to have copy portray the human-ness of the founders, the personality of the founders, not just the corporate philosophy that is usually touted on the old paper brochures.
Nick Ursborne author of Net words: says “Better to be hated by some than to be ignored by everyone.” Not everyone has to like you!
Be real, be human, let your unique personality shine through your writing is the advice for the online copywriters as well as those of us who write reviews and develop our own web sites. People get to know and trust people who are real and will buy from people they trust.
There is a fine line between being uniquely human, demonstrating strong character and being funky or too hip and offensive. The key to this is to develop your voice online while insuring that the messages and the tone is consistent with the product or service you are promoting.
The new online copywriters must be real and congruent to stand out from the crowd!