Even if you’re new to freelance writing, you should be able to understand what conversational copy means. It simply means write like you talk.
For a long time, professionally written copy was expected to sound like corporate-speak. A bunch of long words that made the company sound smart and big were the norm.
The Internet and social media have pretty much squashed that whole song and dance.
When a customer lands on a business site to make a purchase, they don’t want to be faced with pages of textbook-like drivel. Nope.
What they need is to trust that business, be interested in that business and want to hand their money to that business because that business gets them.
Easier said than done, but very possible.
When you write conversational copy for your clients, you first put yourself into their customer’s shoes. Not any customer – their ideal customer. That one perfect customer who your client made the business for. You write with that one guy or gal in mind and it’ll work.
It’s easier to do it when you visualize it in real life.
So do this: learn the info on your client’s ideal customer (also known as an avatar, but that just sounds like something out of a sci-fi movie and I hate sci-fi).
Research the crap out of that customer’s like, wants, job, income, hobbies and passions in life. Then research your client’s company, products, goals, background, reasons for living, etc.
Now you’re ready to “talk” to their customer.
Armed with all of your research and the goals you want to reach with your copy, you talk to that customer. In your mind, anyway.
Imagine walking into a bar to meet this guy or gal (who you now know pretty well given your research), grabbing a nice corner booth with a cozy view of the lake outside. The waitress drops a drink in front of both of you and you start to share stories about your college days. There’s a lull in the conversation and he/she mentions your client’s product. You turn on the charm and talk about how cool it is, how it’s helped you and why you’d buy all of it if you could. Your friend laughs, says it sounds great and they’ll pick one up on their way home.
That conversation is what you write down. Maybe not verbatim, given the drinks you’ve had, but something close.
Then of course, you spend ample time polishing the grammar, spelling and wording so that it shines like a new dime (why do people say shines like a new penny? Dimes are MUCH shinier than pennies).
The whole point of conversational copy is to make the customer feel like they’re listening to a friend, not getting spoken to like a good little listener in the reading circle.
And you can’t write this way, convincingly, without having the right information and research about your client, their customers and their products.
Good writing starts with good listening, i.e. research.
Research and knowing your client also helps you to know how far is too far. You can easily get away with dropping a few bad words or using slang in some markets, but for others, that would kill every deal.
If your client is on the fence with using conversational copy, write a quick paragraph or a couple of sentences to show them what you intend to do. Remind them how powerful social media is these days and how half the time, no one uses complete words, let alone complete sentences and proper grammar.
Remember, if you ever need help or have questions, send me an email! I’m here to help.
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