- By Cathy Goodwin
- Published 02/25/2009
- Writing for the Web
Copywriting is the key to converting website traffic. But when you’re a copywriter with a paying client, you have time pressure. That means when you need to complete your writing project, you can’t wait till the muse strikes or the mood lifts. You have to create on demand. Even if you’re not a professional copywriter, you face your own real deadlines. You can’t put your marketing campaign or your website on hold while you wait for inspiration. Otherwise you will be never see results. Most creative people have ideas or too few. Either you’re bursting with ideas and wondering which one to use in this campaign or you keep coming up empty. It’s rare to have just the right number of ideas that arrive at the right time. Experienced writers write down their ideas and keep them organized in a folder. They find some ideas blossom into full-fledged books, campaigns and products. Others seem weak or even silly after a few days. But now you’re staring at a blank computer screen. You need something now. What can you do? First, review your keywords. Let’s say you are an office organizer. You want to attract website visitors will search for solutions relating to time management, clearing clutter and profitability. Write your keywords on top of a sheet of paper and free-associate. Busy. Clutter. Paper. Files. Folders. Space. Computer.
Now see if y
ou can put any of these words together in a new way. Hmmm… let’s try “Busy + Folders.” Then you come up with, “How busy people can develop a folder system that saves 2 hours a day.” Second, many copywriters use this technique: Look around the room where you are working. What do you see? For example, I see a plant that seems to be dying because I forgot to water it. So if I’m writing about organizing offices, the plant might remind me of setting priorities and not trying to do everything. It’s something that should have been thrown out a long time ago. And maybe it’s something you think you “should” have but it’s all wrong for you. Third, call up a friend and describe what you’re offering. Ask your friend, “What seems most surprising about what I just said? What grabs your attention the most?” Your friend says, “I didn’t realize that people who cleared clutter often found their business took off. I might need to be convinced.” If you’re still staring at the screen, pull up a calendar. What’s the season? Can you refer to gifts? Can you look up the astrological date of your project and make a light-hearted reference to it? For instance, some dates are auspicious for new beginnings. Others might signal conflict ahead.
Finally, you’ll rarely run out of ideas when you ask clients and subscribers to contribute questions. As you answer their questions, you’ll find yourself creating bullet points, openings and compelling copy that draws the irresistibly into your product.
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