As writers, digital publishers, marketers, and networkers, you’re constantly crafting your next blog post, composing upcoming newsletters, and brainstorming captivating social media captions. No matter what the project is, it’s always important to promote your work, making sure readers can relate to the content you're publishing. Digital publishers are regularly thinking about how they can convert their readers into subscribers or converting their audience into loyal, paying customers. Audiences today expect creative, educational, and even entertaining copy. Ignoring this demand would be a disservice to your hard work-- at the end of the day, writing effective copy is writing words that result in better conversions. Here are 5 common copywriting mistakes to avoid:
1. Keyword cramming
SEO used to be all about quantity; squeeze as many keywords into a post as possible and who cares about style or presentation. However, SEO algorithms are ever-changing, and cramming in keywords can actually be counterproductive.This video from Moz is a great primer on keyword impact on SEO. Although there’s no silver bullet to win the keyword game, it’s recommended to include your keyword or words in your title, headings, and throughout the body of your article. This strategy has been shown to yield the best results. This may mean a slight tweak to how you craft a paragraph, but using the search term for how someone may look for your product can help create a web visit or even a sale!
2. Not proofreading
We all know how it feels to finally finish writing an article, hit save, and then not want to look at it again for at least a week. One of the most exhausting and even annoying parts about writing is having to re-read and edit your own work, especially after having your eyes glued to it for hours at a time. As we tend to skip over the smaller mistakes or maybe even go into autopilot when editing, it’s always a good idea to get a second pair of eyes on your writing (ask a friend or colleague!). Part of being a good copywriter is also being a good (copy) editor, and although a small typo or spelling error may not seem like a big deal, it can decrease your credibility and really stick out to your audience.
3. Writing to yourself rather than your audience
It’s no secret that most people write as if they were the target audience. It’s incredibly easy to be thrilled about your brand, products, or services, and it’s fun to talk about the benefits and features that you offer! However, the writer is not the intended audience here, so it’s important that your copy resonates with the reader or consumer. In this day in age, it’s key to make sure everything about your messaging centers squarely on the customer. For example, your new, revamped website may be exciting to you, but may not be totally relevant or game-changing to your audience by itself. Ask yourself: How does it solve a specific problem? How will improve their lives? Disqus provides audience analytics, making it easier for you to get to know your audience and try to learn their way of thinking. This will allow you to develop stronger relationships, better tailor your content, and even help to build a loyal audience.
4. Not making friends
The internet is an incredibly social space, filled with bloggers, writers, commenters, readers, and experts-- and search engines tend to reward sites that play well with others. Aside from this being a great habit, networking is also a huge part of a successful content strategy and can even help in building domain authority, which is a metric that was developed to better understand your SEO ranking. The higher your domain authority, the more likely you are to earn a higher search engine ranking and to receive more web traffic. It’s always good practice to link back to other websites, bloggers you trust, case studies, or resources that you recommend. You can also diversify your content by inviting guest writers to contribute. and be sure not to miss out on sharing your expertise by being a guest writer on another site too!
5. Being too formal
Without offending every English major out there, your copy shouldn’t include a long, intimidating vocabulary and strict use of grammar. It just won’t sell. Again, writing copy is really just writing words that work to convert your audience better, so you should strive to connect with your readers and keep them engaged. A great way to do this is by keeping your copy concise, punchy, simple, and written as if you knew the person you’re speaking to! Use less fluffy adjectives, but more specific and powerful verbs. If you need to break some grammar rules in the process, that’s totally kool 😎
If you can manage to avoid these 5 copywriting mistakes, then you’re already on your way to becoming a better writer. 📝 Which copywriting error are you most guilty of? Let us know with the reactions below!