10 Steps To Killer Web Copy
I have a ten step formula, would you like me to begin talking about that? Because I’ve never discussed it anywhere.
Let’s say you are sitting and staring at a blank page on Microsoft Word and you see that screen blinking. And your cursor is blinking. You have a blank page. Or if you write physically on a white piece of paper, you’re looking at a white piece of paper and you have your pen or pencil. This is not a great place to be all the time.
In fact, every copywriter starts this way with every ad he or she is about to write. But it’s so easy to get writers block because they think they’ve got to start writing copy when there’s no preparation. Well, after I’ve gone through my discovery, analysis, planning and execution, those steps ... this is step four -- execution. What do I do when I’m about to execute, when I’m about to start writing? What do I finally do when I put all the ideas that I’ve learned from discovery, analysis and planning? Discovery, Analysis, and Planning -- what do I do?
Okay, well I’m staring at a blank sheet of paper. Here’s step one. And I guess we can call this Alex Mandossian’s Web Copy Formula because I’ve never seen it this way. In this order.
Step One, is I ask myself what are the FAQ’s of the visitor who’s about to visit my web site? So step one is FAQ. And I think of one visitor at a time -- what is the frequently asked questions of the visitor, visiting my web site? What is the conversation going on in his or her mind?
Now I ask that question for one specific reason. Because I have to resonate with my first words, what the questions are, before they’re coming to my web site. What’s going on in their mind?
It’s not specifically what I’m going to write. I might be guessing wrong. They came to my site for a specific reason, what are all the possibilities that they may be thinking of? And those are always questions. What are they questioning before they come to my web site or after they land?
Now, I’m the copywriter and marketer for 1ShoppingCart.com and when I wrote the copy to this web site, and it’s a very good case study by the way ... the first thing I did before I wrote a headline, before I wrote a sub-headline, before I wrote anything else, is what are the Frequently Asked Questions?
And I don’t know what the order’s going to be, but I just write down the questions. I don’t answer them.
So guess what the first question was? "What is 1ShoppingCart.com?"
Second question: "Who needs 1ShoppingCart.com?"
Third question: "What online credit card processors are compatible with 1ShoppingCart.com?"
Next question: "Can 1ShoppingCart.com get me credit card processing capabilities?"
Next: "Are my customer’s 1ShoppingCart credit card transactions always secure?"
"How much database information can the 1ShoppingCart system handle?"
"Can someone install the 1ShoppingCart.com system for me?"
"What if I’m not happy with 1ShoppingCart, what do I do then?"
"Can I insert HTML code into my 1ShoppingCart order page?"
On and on and on ...
I wrote about 40 questions and I wrote an FAQ. Then I went back and chose 7 to 10 of them and the way I knew which ones to use is I went to the customer service of 1ShoppingCart, I asked them "Which questions are asked most?"
And guess what number one was -- "What is 1ShoppingCart.com?"
Answer: "1ShoppingCart.com is an application service provider or ASP that’s the first choice for shopping cart software technology by some of the savviest and most successful e-Marketers on the net. It allows you to take online credit card orders in real time without requiring additional plugins or software downloaded to your PC’s hard drive."
That’s the answer. Guess where that is? Under the FAQ tab of the web site. So if you ask me "What do I write first?" I write the FAQ’s first. And I don’t write the answers. To get the answers I do research. But I write the FAQ’s first.
I have found that if I can answer the questions of the people visiting my site, I can neutralize all the noise going on in their head when they’re visiting my site, and take them on a journey down this greased chute or as Joe Sugarman calls it Slippery Slide, take out all the barbed wire from that slide, and have them go all the way down to my order form.
That’s what I want to do. Like on a playground I’m taking all the sand off the slide and having them go straight into my order box. The way to do that -- step one, many people say Where do I start? That’s where I start. Write an FAQ.
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10 Steps To Killer Web Copy