19th October 2018 Claire Hawes

Persuasion: Best practices shared at the Pro Copywriters’ Conference

And the results of my awayday at the Pro Copywriter’s Conference? They were much bigger than you might have imagined

What happens when you gather a group of copywriters in one room?

  • You get conversations about the corrupting influence of corporate bullshit and why being a master of brevity matters
  • You learn how to nail versatility of voice
  • You learn a simple metaphor can teach, demystify, surprise, delight and galvanise an audience

Most importantly you get born listeners, skilled researchers, interviewers and writers learning from one another.

Last Friday I escaped my home office and took time out for some continued professional development.

  • The location: The Crystal, London Docklands.
  • The event: The 2018 Pro Copywriters’ Conference.

Of course, taking a day out to spend time with my tribe was a no-brainer.

I got to ensure my knowledge is up to date so that I can keep pace in a fast-moving digital world.

And to learn and develop new skills and techniques for improving my writing.

Better still, I learnt tips and tricks for running an efficient freelance business so that I can deliver a professional service to my clients.

Here are my key takeaways from the day.

How to find the right messages to connect your business to your audience

Copywriter and Content Strategist Anna Gunning explained why getting to the heart of the brief is critical to customer-centric messaging. A brief needs to answer the questions:

  • What do your prospective customers know?
  • And what do they need to know in their buying journey?

With fully fleshed out answers I can move your business away from bland statements such as:

“We’re professional, committed to customer service and deliver great quality.”

And towards words that actually address your customers’ needs.

How to bottle your brilliance

The award-winning copywriter and agency founder Anna McLaughlin showed us how you can communicate how you’re different. Also, why customers should care.

Anna recommended a framework that gives me detailed answers to the questions:

  • What do you do?
  • Who do you do it for?
  • How do you do it?
  • What drives you and your core values?

Your answers will help me to shed light on your strengths. Better still, they’ll reveal non-obvious ways you can stand out in a crowded field.

How to master persuasion with your tone of voice

A strong and consistent tone of voice can position, persuade and pack a serious punch. Fashion product copy agency founder Celia Anderson shared her TOV toolkit.

In brief, I start with keywords and customer avatars (personas). Then create mood boards and put together guidelines about what words to include and what to avoid.

As a result of my efforts, I’ll be able to slip into the shoes of your customers and speak to them in the language they understand and want to listen to.

How to provide a better service with a professional approach to my freelance business

Copywriter and Trainer Jackie Barrie revealed best practices for managing a copywriting business, so that as a client, from initial enquiry through to project completion and invoicing, you can be clear about your project status, timelines and delivery dates.

To sum up

If there’s one thing I took away from the Professional Copywriters’ Conference, it’s don’t ever describe us copywriters as passionate about what we do.

Likewise don’t ever tell us we provide innovative solutions.

What we do is write words that matter to your audience. That’s what compels people to buy from you.

And finally

If you would like help writing words that matter to your audience, 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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