15th June 2018 Claire Hawes

8 copywriting lessons we can learn from World Cup Football teams

Let me tell you what you won’t find in most copywriting guides and manuals…


The World Cup is upon us. Thirty-two teams have gathered in Russia to battle it out to win the Jules Rimet trophy.

The strongest contenders for winning the cup prepare teams long in advance for dealing with different situations on the pitch. What’s more, each team member prepares for individual team roles.

It’s similar to planning copywriting for a marketing campaign.

You may not believe this, but business writers can learn lessons from football managers and their teams.

Think about it for a moment. It’s preparation, communication and trust that unites football teams and helps them win cups.

In a like manner, it’s preparation, communication and building trust that help copywriters guide readers into taking action.

Let’s dig a little deeper into this theory:

1.    The value of having an end goal in mind

A football team’s success depends on an individual commitment to a common goal.

When writing marketing copy, copywriters start with an end goal in mind. They think of the reader and the problem it is trying to resolve.

2.    The value of working as a team

Trust and confidence in teammate’s abilities strengthen and unite football teams.

Likewise, copywriters aim to build trust in product and service offerings and give the reader confidence that it is making the right decision.

3.    The value of practice

Skilled footballers can bring a ball under control in an instant. Then control the ball tightly. To achieve a consistent first touch takes hours of practice.

By the same token, when you write every day, writing becomes a habit. Better still copywriters sharpen up their writing skills.

4.    The value of tactics

Football managers use formations to organise players on the field. A formation guides players into doing what the manager wants them to do.

Copywriters can choose from a variety of ‘formations’ to guide readers into taking action. Of these include:

  • Promise, picture, proof, push
  • Attention, interest, desire, conviction, action
  • Problem, agitate, solution

5.    The value of clear communication

Unbeaten World Cup football teams communicate clearly both on and off the field.

Of course, in any given situation, people appreciate easy to read and understand written communications. Clear, concise communications, unhindered by jargon quickly get messages across.

6.    The value of smooth passing of the ball

To score goals requires fluid movement and passing between every player on the field.

In writing, copywriters glide readers over words with smooth transitions.

7. The value of learning from a coach

Successful football managers have the trust and respect of their players. They know how to allocate the best set of rules to a given situation.

The tools may change, but the rules of the copywriting game haven’t. Writing marketing copy that gets results involves many skills and lessons learned. Hence copywriters learn a lot from their predecessors and authorities in copywriting.

8.    The value of paying for talent

Footballers with proven ability increase the chances of winning cups and titles. The more titles a team win, the more money they make from ticket sales, broadcasting rights and merchandise.

If you want a return on investment from your marketing efforts, then it pays to employ someone who has the skills to capture your products and services and spark interest in them.  Moreover, write persuasive content that starts conversations, builds relationships and ultimately guides readers into taking action.

So it all adds up to this. To score goals and win customers you need to prepare long in advance. What’s more, you need to have a good strategy based on communication and trust.

What could be more important?

And finally

If you would like help writing marketing copy that scores goals, then drop me a line to get information about pricing.

Claire Hawes, copywriter and owner of The Content BoutiqueAbout Claire Hawes

Claire Hawes is a marketing communications copywriter. She enjoys writing engaging copy that helps businesses to get noticed and attract enquiries. Claire’s experience mainly lies in the business to business sector. Her clients include both businesses and digital marketing agencies.

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