I'm speaking... Ready to listen?

This FRIDAY, I’m a guest speaker at the Young Entrepreneurs Project here in Cairns.

It’s their ‘Deep Dive into Marketing’ and I’m going to be talking about…. you guessed it, #Copywriting

I’m keen to help young entrepreneurs here in Cairns and FNQ to tell their story more effectively and get results.

Come along to CQUni Cairns Campus this Friday to join in and learn how to sell like a pro.

Rob Sattler
Have you heard of Cryptocurrency?
 
The original cryptocurrency...  but is it going to last?

The original cryptocurrency...  but is it going to last?

 

I'm not sure if you've noticed, but the world is changing.

And one thing that's changing even faster than our adoption of the internet and connected devices is how money and assets are being held and transferred.

Cryptocurrency - the often thought of world of money laundering, Silk Road and the dark web is becoming a mainstream way of owning and transferring wealth.

Here's just some of the big ones:

  • Bitcoin - the original cryptocurrency and creator of countless new millionaires and billionaires, and still the largest crypto by market cap and price-per-unit value
  • Ethereum - a newer cryptocurrency that also offers the ability to create smart, self-executable contracts between parties that could revolutionize everything from insurance to software sales
  • Ripple - a cryptocurrency that's designed specifically to take on the multi-trillion dollar international finance industry by allowing institutions in different countries the ability to transfer large sums of cash in seconds (avoiding the slow and expensive ways that banks currently send money)
  • Litecoin - a fresh, new cryptocurrency that was built by an ex-Google engineer that's now got a Top 5 market cap
  • Stellar - a simple cryptocurrency that also has fast transfer times, allows development using its platform (and was designed by one of the co-founders of Ripple)
  • QTUM - a smart cryptocurrency that's designed for business - watch this space...

The incredible thing about cryptocurrency is that it's (generally) untraceable, anonymous and highly secure.

Here's why:

Under every type of 'crypto' is what's called a Blockchain.

Blockchain is essentially that - a chain of blocks - and each 'block' is an encrypted section of a transaction and ownership ledger.

Your bank keeps a ledger of all account owners, balances and transactions, and it's the same with blockchain, except the information is encrypted in a publicly viewable ledger that can't be tampered with.

In simple terms, it means anyone in the world can buy, sell, or transfer wealth securely, without any government controls or chance of theft.

It does however mean that if you lose your private 'keys' to your cryptocurrency 'wallet', that you've also lost your money too. Or if you transfer funds from your wallet and get the address wrong, there's no one to call to claw it back.

Cryptocurrency is transforming how people can transfer money - I could get a new customer in Mumbai, India and instead of having to worry about using Western Union, Moneygram or PayPal, they could literally send me the equivalent amount of money that I'm charging for my copywriting services in AUD, in Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple or Litecoin (or any of the other 1,500+ coins now available).

And the best part is that it can happen securely in seconds... No waiting for payment settlements, no risk of forged payment receipts, and no government restrictions on currency transfer limits. 

Think Facebook has changed the world? Wait until everything from food sources to internet services are recorded, tracked and transferred using blockchain.

The best is yet to come.

 

PS: If you're launching a new Cryptocurrency coin or token via an ICO (Initial Coin Offering), then talk with me about producing the right sales copy to suit your potential market. I'm a cryptocurrency investor and have written for ICOs previously, so I'd love to hear about your project. Get in touch with me at rob@getcopy.com.au

Here's why I won't accept your LinkedIn invite

Know that feeling?

The "who the h#ll are you?" feeling...?

I get it, LinkedIn is a GREAT way to get in touch with new contacts, find new customers and keep up with all the people you've met or done business with in the past.

It's revolutionised the way business people interact with each other and has created new ways of prospecting ANYONE that people didn't have before.

But it's also given rise to people being lazy, especially when it comes to getting in touch with people they don't know.

 

You didn't even bother saying 'hello'?

I like getting invites from people to connect on LinkedIn, especially when it's new clients who've seen my posts on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter and are now chasing me for sales copywriting.

What gets me really ticked off though is when random people send me a LinkedIn invite and don't even bother with a personal message to go with it.

I'm sure I'm not the first person to rant about this. I'm sure there's business people who're busier and more influential than me who've gotten pissed off about it as well.

But people (especially sales people) don't seem to get it.

 

If I don't know you, I'm sorry but I'm probably not going to care

When I've got a huge network of contacts that I've spent thousands of hours building up over many years, why would I want to open that entire contact list up to you if you can't even add a short message in your invite to tell me WHY you want to connect with me?

If we've met, or it's completely obvious why you would be sending an invite, then fair call. It's ok to not add a message. But if I don't even know who you are, then why would I want to connect?

Unfortunately, far too many people are just wanting YOUR connections, not necessarily to do business with you.

 

Don't waste time trying to be a 'LION' 

(this isn't Facebook or Instagram)

5 or 6 years ago, being a LinkedIn Open Networker (LION) was all the rage.

People spent entire workdays promoting themselves to get as many business contacts on LinkedIn as they could. But really, what's the point? It's not a competition to see who has the most 'friends'. This is business...

If you've got 7,000+ people in your LinkedIn network (which is supposed to be for business connections), what sort of relationship do you have with these people? I'll tell you, unless you're spamming them every day or something, they probably don't remember you. 

Let's look at the ridiculousness (yes, that's a word) of this situation: If you spent 10 minutes - which is hardly meaningful - each year in contact with each person on your list, you'd spend 3.2 hours each day, EVERY DAY OF THE YEAR to do that.

(Best of luck with that ok).

It's no different if you're going to just randomly add people. Again, why bother?

 

Make a friend, not an enemy

Let me give you a tip... 

If you're going to add people on LinkedIn for prospecting purposes, then you need to take the time to craft a message that'll get their attention, accept your invite, and leave the door open to contact from you.

Don't just click the automated 'Connect / Add' button and hope that they'll go "sure X, I'd love to randomly connect with you for no apparent reason"...

Send them a message that says hello, tells them why you'd like to connect and a benefit. If you can fit in a comment about when you'll speak with them or about a deadline of some sort, then that's even better.

"Hi Greg, we don't know each other but we've got a common friend in 'X'. I was reaching out to you today because I've found a great way to help companies save money and I think I can assist yours. If you'd like to connect and find out more, then I look forward to speaking with you."

or...

If you're connecting with me, then something along the lines of:

"Hi Rob, we don't know each other but I've heard you're a good copywriter from a number of people. I'd like to connect and chat about what you can do for my business. Looking forward to hearing from you."

 

I don't need an ego boost, I just need a reason

See how simple that was in the above messages?

And they're fairly elaborate - especially the first one. You don't need to be that special and you don't need to stroke the ego of person you want to connect with. Just give them the same short, sharp and valid reason for connecting that you would on a handwritten note to a receptionist if you were doing 'door-knock' sales. If the decision maker only knows your name and nothing else about you, they'll simply tell the receptionist to shove you off.

So, how are you connecting with people on LinkedIn?

Are you just expecting people to connect and be instant best buddies with you or are you taking the time to send a note (and 10X-ing your chances at the same time)?

LinkedIn is the most powerful business contact tool ever - just use it to your advantage by seeing it from how your prospect would see it.

Happy Selling,

 

Rob.

PS: For more great tips on Sales, Marketing & Copywriting, Subscribe to my blog below so you don't miss the next one.

 

Rob Sattler
[Website] 5 Reasons Why People Won't Buy From You Online

 

You’ve launched your new website….

 

It’s great, it’s shiny and you’ve even got a FREE offer on there to help get your first enquiries.

You pay for some online ad traffic to get a heap of the right people seeing your offer… and….  Nothing.

 

In a pit of despair, you begin asking yourself:

“What’s wrong with these people?”

“It’s FREE! Why aren’t they taking it?”

“Is there something wrong with my site?”

 

All of these questions and more go flooding through your mind as your $100 ad budget for the day disappears with nothing to show for it.

The right thing to do, is to stop your ads and start looking at some of the basics.

It’s likely you’ve missed something simple - that's now turning people away without them feeling compelled to engage with you.

Let’s look at your brand, your copy and your offer.

 

#1. Your website doesn’t tell them it’ll solve their problems

If you think that writing one gimmicky headline and putting a whole heap of text below it on a page will get people signing up to your offer, you’re just going to waste your money and a lot of time.

In conversion copywriting (direct marketing) you learn that the #1 thing on every page of your website should be your headline. It needs to instantly capture the reader’s attention, otherwise they’ll click away.

Your headline needs to do 3 things:

1.      It needs to say what you ACTUALLY DO – if you stop toilets from leaking, you need to actually say that, in the headline.

2.     It needs to add a benefit (if you can) – like “We stop toilets leaking, fast” or “We’ll stop your toilet leaking, anytime day or night”.

3.     It needs to give the reader a reason to keep reading… 

Writing this all in 8 words or less is difficult, that’s why we spend so much of our time writing and rewriting the headline until we ‘nail it’.

Try writing 20, 30, even 50 headline variants until you find one that’s absolutely perfect and does all three things.

 

#2. Your copy isn’t short, sharp and straight to the point

In this day and age of distracted minds and a flood of offers each day, it can be hard to capture people’s attention for any length of time.

Which is why your copy needs to get to the point…. FAST.

You need to say what problem is you solve, how you solve it, why you’re special and then make an offer for them to get it solved by you.

This has to happen in as FEW WORDS AS POSSIBLE.

Here’s how to do it:

1.      Write your full page, including all of the good things about your product / service and how it solves the customer’s problem.

2.     Walk away from it for half a day, longer if possible.

3.     Read through your copy and remove as many ‘extra’ words as you can. If you can say something in 9 words instead of 12, make it 9 words. If you can do better and still get the point across, then do better.

4.     Make sure the page still ‘flows’ and makes sense. You’re taking your prospect on a conversational journey, so make it a journey without bumps or hold-ups.

Whatever you do, just get to the point quickly.

 

#3. Your FREE offer isn’t really worth it

This is a BIG ONE. Often people put up offers on their site for a ‘Free ebook’ and expect hundreds of conversions (sign-ups or actions taken). Only to be gravely disappointed after hundreds of visitors and not a single sign-up.

If you’re offering something that’s not of tremendous or helpful value, people aren’t going to care. Especially when they’re handing over their contact details to an ‘unknown’ like yourself.

So make your offer special. And valuable. And fully worth their signup.

If it’s a free ebook, then make the ebook so damn good that people would happily pay $20 for it. If you’re offering something free to get more bookings at your mechanic’s workshop, then offer a free car wash and vacuum. It’s something that’s actually valuable that people would want.

 

#4. Your business name is….  ['cough'] terrible

This is a hidden trap.

It’s not hidden to the people who see your site however – it’s hidden to you.

Unfortunately, it’s all too common that people get emotionally attached to a name and then fulfil ‘all of their business dreams’ by using it.

Let me make up some names for you here to show you what I mean:

Kwik Kuts (a hairdresser)

Tregado Flow (a plumber)

Jane’s Twinky Toes (a nail salon)

Use a name that incorporates what you do. And for goodness’ sake, spell it correctly using normal English.

If you’re starting a consulting firm that charges $500 per hour, you’re going to lose customers before they even speak with you if your business name is hard to pronounce or hard to spell.

Make it easy for people (boring and simple is ACTUALLY a good thing).

 

#5. You don’t tell them what happens after they subscribe / enquire

This is a critical one. When you put your details into a website contact box, you want to know what happens next right? So do your prospects.

When are they going to call me?

Are they going to call or email me?

What will they do next?

Are they going to email me the report or do I need to download it?

Etc. Etc.

Don’t leave people guessing – it’ll halve your conversion rate. Here’s an example of what to do:

“To get a FREE [insert offer] today, simply leave your details below and one of our friendly staff will call you ASAP”

or

“To download your FREE guide, enter your details below and we’ll send it to you via email straight away”

See? Both tell them what to do (enter details) and what happens next. No guessing, and a better conversion rate.

 

Get your conversion rate UP and learn how to write for better sales results

Just implementing these 5 things today will help you increase your enquiry rate and potentially keep your business trading (rather than losing money wondering what's wrong).

For more information on writing concisely to get more sales, check out my article on Marketing Magazine Australia. It’s been shared more than 100 times… 

 

 

7 things I learnt from working in sales
rob the copywriter

Being fresh and new to sales is terrifying and thrilling, all at the same time. The prospect of making great money, having autonomy, being out of the office all day and meeting great people certainly has its appeal.

But there’s another side to sales, one that isn’t all big commissions and expensive lunches.

That’s the part of sales that means hard work and getting knocked down from time to time, and while I look back on my time in sales as one of the best periods of my working life so far, I’m the first to admit it wasn’t all sunshine and roses.  

Here’s what I know now, but didn’t know when I was just a pimply-faced 20-year old with an ill-fitting, green microfiber suit and huge smile:

1.    Big commissions get paid for big effort

The huge 5 or 6 figure commission payments don’t come in your first year. Or your second year (unless you’re selling something that pays unusually well).

Big commission cheques get paid to sales people that do the hard yards, calling 10 to 20 new prospects every day, having 10 – 15 meetings or more per week. If you ever want to see 4, 5 or even 6 zeros on your pay slip, you need to be putting in the effort.

2.    The big deals don’t come to you (you have to find them)

This carries on from point 1. If you’re not on the phone, knocking on doors or booking appointment after appointment, you’ll never come across the relationships that then build into big deals. Getting an inbound phone call for a deal that pays $50,000 commission is a rarity. You’ve got about the same chance as being hit by lightning. So, get out there and pound the pavements; find those client relationships that you can build into something great.

3.    Every problem is YOUR problem

This one was the hardest to learn:

“the installers stuffed up”

“the delivery won’t be here on time”

“the director can’t sign your deal this afternoon - she’s not in the office”

“the connection is down”

When you’re the interface between the client and the business you work for, and you’re the one who knows everyone and has influence, you’re the one who’ll get called by the client when something isn’t right. You’re also the one who’ll have to drop everything, be humble and sort things out.

I’ve had calls on Sunday afternoons while at the park with my kids or Monday nights at dinnertime and I’ve had to make phone calls to the right people to get problems sorted out. You’re the one with the big salary, the flexible schedule and the big comms payments, so you’re also the one who needs to play diplomat and get things fixed when stuff goes wrong. Be brave, honest, and fix problems quickly.

 4.   Your client is the most important person in your (working) life

Sure, family does come first. Absolutely. But when you’re at work and work pays the commission, your clients are the most important people you speak to. Not your boss, and not your co-workers.

I’m not saying you need to suck up to your clients and worship them like they’re Greek gods (they’d probably tell you to get lost). But I am saying that you need to be responsive. You need to do what you’ve said you’ll do. You’ll need to ask the hard questions and make big requests of your own boss or people at your company to make things happen.

If a client doesn’t feel like you’re on their team, they aren’t going to give you the big deals to quote on either. Hard work and unwavering support of your client’s genuine needs are what will build an unbreakable client relationship that will pay handsomely over time.

5.    If you’re afraid of people, get over yourself (or get a new job)

It’s ok to be an introvert and work in sales, as long as you’re willing to get over yourself each and every day. I often had days when I’d get to the office and hope the phone didn’t ring and that no one would bother me. I know that’s crazy but some days I really felt like the ultimate introvert, not the fun-loving, deal-making extrovert I am the rest of the time.

The difference is, on the days when I didn’t want to call people, I’d do this...

I'd firstly call a mate for a quick chat. And then call a client I know well, to see how things are going. And you know what? By the time I’d done that, I was ready to call anyone.

It was unorthodox, but I found that if I could break the ice with a phone call to a ‘friendly’ first, I could take on any challenge by phone, including cold-calling for leads.

As the famous saying goes…  “feel the fear, and do it anyway.”

6.   No one cares about how much you sold last quarter

There’s nothing more humbling (or deflating, depending on how you look at it), than getting in to work for the first Monday 8am sales meeting after the end of a cracking sales quarter to know that:

(a)          Your sales from last quarter are from last quarter. No one cares now, this is ‘this quarter’.

(b)         And that you’re back at ZERO again.

The only way to make these fresh starts easier is to have a huge pipeline of deals you’re working on (see points 1 & 2). It also ensures that you’re not facing point 7 while in the same meeting…

7.    Nothing hurts more than losing

Yep. The numbers don’t lie: you either hit your target or you didn’t. That’s it.

And if you didn’t, then it’s a sucky time to be sitting amongst your peers in an 8am sales meeting at the start of a new quarter.

What’s worse? I’ll tell you – it’s the previous Friday morning when you didn’t have an “I’M GOING TO LUNCH” sign above your desk like all the other sales people who’d hit target for the quarter. And you knew that you weren’t going to be able to close any more deals before the day is out.

Yes, I missed lunch (a couple of times). It’s sucks, hard.

If this is you, then you need to do 2 things:

(a)          You need to give yourself a good talking to about what went wrong and why. It’s a good idea to do this over the weekend so that you’re not making crummy excuses in Monday’s sales meeting.

(b)         You need to get a plan for getting yourself back on track. It’s called ‘activity’. Own the phone. Be out of the office at meetings. Start earlier, stay later, do whatever you need to do to get your pipeline absolutely pumping again.

BONUS TIP:  Do shit today.

Don’t put stuff off until tomorrow.

Every single day you don’t get a quote out to a client or don’t make 20 phone calls for the day is a day you’ll never get back and a future where you won’t get to enjoy the spoils of having worked hard.

If you really want to succeed in sales, then take it from someone who’s had huge wins and catastrophic losses, do shit today.

In conclusion… 

Sales is an absolute cracker of a career to have. You’ll never get to meet so many interesting people, nor have so many crazy/fun/scary/invigorating experiences in any other job. Just take it from me that if you’re starting out in sales, focus on the important things, do the hard work and everything else will take care of itself.

Oh, and you’ll one day be a seasoned salesperson too.

Want more sales and copywriting tips? Then don't miss another blog post by subcribing to my blog below. 

Rob Sattler
Be careful with your words

 

The internet has revolutionised everything in our world, from online commerce to streaming media entertainment, but the biggest transformation has been in the options for how we communicate.

 

What hasn't changed though is how we should be communicating. 

Except for our love affair with emoji’s :-), we still rely on verbal and written communications to get our points across on all of our new mediums, it’s just that now we have the power to communicate with millions of people instantly.

Which means it’s more important than ever to write well.

Our younger generations might be ‘dumbing down’ the English language to 1st-grade phonetics, but there’s no place for it in business.

All too often, people relax their use of grammar, spelling and general message composition to attempt faster / more concise communication. Sure, "ur" instead of "you’re" and "wt" instead of "what" might be quicker to type, but it makes you look like a pre-schooler.

“tbh, I thnk u nd a pay rse ...isn’t cool.

“To be honest, I think you need a pay rise ...is.

Got it?

If you want to come across as professional, keep your language professional.

 

3 reasons why it's uber important to write professionally:

  • If you're an employee, your boss might see your writing

    • Result: You might get dismissed (depending on what's been said) or 'forgotten about' in the next round of promotions

  • Your clients or prospects might see your writing
    • Result: It's a fast way to lose future business, costing your company thousands or even millions of dollars for one dumb text message or Instagram post
  • The internet seems to never forget
    • Result: Well, there's scary stuff on the internet about nearly everyone, why add to it? Especially when you might not be thinking about a run for public office right now, but might do in 10 years time (those drunken Facebook posts won't seem as funny when you have to explain them to the media in 2027).  

Don't lose your power.... Keep your writing professional - especially on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram OK?  :-)

And if you can't keep it real (due to trouble with spelling and grammar), then do yourself a favour and use the same lifesaving tool I use...  www.trygrammarly.com 

Rob Sattler
Got Milk?

Imagine this – you walk into a shop to buy something. You have a need (let’s say, for milk), but you’ve never walked into this shop before, and you don’t really know much about the different options.

There’s no one in the shop to greet you.

You have to find the milk fridge yourself, without any signs, and when you do there are 15 different types. You can only read the type of milk (Full Cream, Lite Milk, A2…), the nutritional info and the price. You don’t know where any of the milk has come from, which is ‘home brand’ and which is from your local farmer, and which is part of a huge overseas conglomerate.

Making a decision is difficult - you’re left feeling unsure about which milk you really want. And, when you need more milk, it’s hard to remember which one you picked last time, so you feel no ‘brand loyalty’.

Is this really that big a deal? I mean, after all, it’s only milk.

 

In 2016, Australian Dairy farmers suffered a huge financial setback when the two major dairy companies slashed their farm gate prices to claw back profits – profits which had been falling in part due to the major supermarket’s milk price war.

So, local ‘branded’ milk fought back, and newly informed consumers made the leap away from supermarket branded milk. Australian dairy farmers were pulled back from the brink as people began making conscious milk buying choices.

The descriptions and information that’s written on the milk bottles lets us know where the milk comes from, the farmers approach to humane treatment of animals, and who we’re supporting when we buy their products.

 

Now apply this to your own business.

Imagine your customers have a need, and you know that you can fulfil it.

They need milk, you have lots.

They need to be cooler, you have air-conditioning systems.

They need a new home, and you’re a builder.

You know you can do the job and make them happy, but do they know that too?

 

And if they do know that you sell milk/air conditioning units/new homes, it’s unlikely that you’re the only one who can help, so do they know why they should pick your offer over someone else’s?

You have to tell them.

You have to tell them in a way that’s relatable and easy to understand. Plus, you need to get and hold their attention. It’s not actually difficult to do (you’re probably already doing it), but your success in business of any kind is directly measurable to the strength of your message.

To summarise, build a strong message and you’ll find it easier to attract customers and keep them.

 

Here’s my 3 top tips for building a strong message:

1. Tell them WHAT you do and WHY it will help them.  Going back to our milk scenario, tell them you have farm-fresh local milk that’s better for tummies, and your cows are happy and healthy so their milk tastes delicious and creamy.

I’ll break it down:

a.     Where it comes from - farm-fresh local milk

b.     Why they’ll like it – it’s better for their tummy (than milk that’s heavily processed or had additives mixed in), and it tastes delicious and creamy

c.     Your ethical approach – happy and healthy cows

The result – consumers can clearly see why your milk is a good choice, because they can easily find all the benefits they’re looking for when they make decisions about milk.
 

2. Make it clear, error-free and easy to read – you want to aim your message at someone who’s busy, distracted, rushed and not all that interested. It’s also wise to aim anything you write at a level that suits your audience, if you’re selling milk you need to appeal to everyone, while if you’re selling to a team of accountants then speak using terms they’re likely to understand (while keeping the overall message simple).

Don’t forget to proofread as well – I feel like I’m constantly saying this, but you can’t let even the smallest mistake slip through without having an impact on your professional appearance. Recently I’ve seen major banks, global car companies and world leaders make basic, entry-level, proof-reading errors that instantly erodes their legitimacy.
 

3. Get their attention – let’s assume that you’re passionate about your business. Even if you’re simply selling something like milk or air conditioning units, you most probably know a lot about your field, and get excited when a new brand hits the market. What you need to realise is that your consumer is most likely much less excited about your product. They simply have a problem that you can solve, so you need to grab their attention and show them how you can solve it with writing that appeals to them, not to an air conditioning enthusiast.
My tip - Keep to the basics, and offer to tell them more info in a phone consultation, or when they download a product PDF. Don’t just list the benefits of whatever you’re selling, tell them how and why it will make their lives easier, or solve their problem, and don’t forget to point out how you stand out from your competitors.

Any questions? Shoot me a line at rob@getcopy.com.au 

Cheers, 

Rob the Copywriter

P.S. Want to find out more about the milk crisis? Here’s some good articles with all the basics:

 

https://theweekendedition.com.au/food-drink/milk-brands-you-should-buy-to-support-australian-dairy-farmers/

http://www.mamamia.com.au/supermarkets-are-selling-out-of-milk/

 

Rob Sattler
Starting Conversations

Doing business is all about communication

If you’re not communicating with your clients, suppliers, and industry peers, then you’ve got problems.

Your customers and clients need to know:

  • what you’re selling
  • how it will help them
  • how much it will cost them
  • and, who they’re buying from

Your suppliers and business partners will want to talk to you about:

  • products
  • your reputation
  • business methods
  • supply and demand

Your industry peers should be talking to you about:

  • what’s happening in your industry
  • technological advances
  • networking opportunities
  • new products in the marketplace

And this is just the start. But all-in-all, it’s not that scary – I’ll run through some ways to start the conversations you should be having.  

 

The way we communicate says a lot about our business

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, first impressions count.

Stuck with a website you had designed in 2006? You’re probably losing customers.

Typos in your industry brochure? Yep, they just bought a machine from your competitor.

Waffled on about yourself and your achievements? They got bored and clicked away.

 

You only get one chance to make a good impression, and often when someone is serious about buying, they’ll start reading what you’ve written. Which is why everything you write needs to be on-topic, easy to read, and grammatically correct.

This way you’ll be able to impress right off the bat, with simple, interesting content that draws in your customers, and makes the industry pay attention. And whether you’re networking face-to-face, or writing product descriptions for your website, you’ll feel confident that what you’re saying is opening doors for your business.

 

How to improve your communication

Good communication removes barriers to business, but it never rests.

Even when business is going well, you can still be looking for new ways to deliver your message, and improve upon what you’re already saying.

If you’re not improving, you’re stagnating. Even I read copy I wrote 12 or 18 months ago and cringe, because I’m constantly looking for ways to develop what I say for my clients.

But how can we do better? Well, there are some key areas that underpin business communication, and if you can sort these out then you’ll be on the right track – here’s my ideas on how to get started:

 

Refine your message

Let’s think about how important your message is – if you’re in small business, and you sell chairs, there are a huge range of ways you can tell people about it.

You could say “Hey, I’ve got some chairs, they’re ok and don’t cost too much.” Probably not the most successful option, but I guess it might work some of the time.

Or, you could try “Looking for the best chairs around? I’ve got a huge range of comfortable, stylish chairs for any living room, and they’re all at great prices – come and have a look.”

 

But much better still is to think about why they want a chair in the first place. Look at what they want, then target your content to their needs (don’t just describe your products), with solutions that they can envisage.

“At the end of the day, there’s nothing better than snuggling up with a book in your favourite chair. When you’re looking for ‘the one’, check out our exclusive range of luxurious, comfortable chairs that’ll last a lifetime. We’ve searched the world to bring you style and quality at an affordable price.”

 

How to refine your own message? spend some time pinpointing exactly why your customers should buy from you (and not your competitor) and then build a sales message around those reasons.

 

Cut through the waffle

We often find clients aren’t sure what they should or shouldn’t include in their sales copy, so they just throw in everything.

Sounds simple, right? But the problem is that unless your customer is just as passionate as you are about your product, you’re probably turning them off with way too much information.

You should only ever pass along just enough information for them to make a decision about your product. Stagger it into sections, so they can quickly find the basics, then scroll further down. If you’ve got lots of information to pass on, have them enter an email address and give it to them as an instant free download (an in-depth PDF). Which means you can also get in touch with them later to follow-up on a sale.

And make sure every piece of information is valuable – for instance, if you’ve worked in the family business for 25 years, then that’s valuable information, but we don’t need to know about your hobbies, or what you did before you started in your current industry. Keep everything relevant to their decision-making process, not your ego.

 

How to build a concise message? When you’re putting together leaflets, websites, or adverts, only include information that’s important for your customers to make a decision, and cut out everything else. It may seem brutal, but it’s the safest way to get it right.

 

Craft a clear message

If you’re not 100% clear about what you’re selling, and how it’ll benefit your customers, then you’re probably losing some of them.

It should be easy to see exactly what your product or service is, and your customers will want to know enough about your company to be sure you’re trustworthy and reliable.

Going back to that first impression we spoke about at the start; if you’re offering professional legal services but have a website that’s full of typos, then any prospective client should be wondering if you’ll include typos in the work you do for them.

And if they can’t work out exactly what you’ve got to offer (and why they should buy from you), then there’s a good chance they’ll choose the easier option.

We often talk about ‘reducing friction’ for customers, to increase the chance of conversion, and by simply and clearly articulating the benefits, you’ll give yourself the best chance of success.

 

How to craft your own clear message? Work out exactly what you offer, and why, then state that clearly. And if you can also outline how you stand apart from your competitors then you’ll make their decision even easier.

 

Start changing the conversation

When it comes to pushing your business to the next level, without effective, clear, and concise communication, you’ll be swimming up-stream. Although it might not be core business, crafting an eloquent and compelling message helps you grow and start more conversations, increase sales and effortlessly improve your reputation and trustworthiness.

Simply follow the tips I’ve outlined here and you’ll be on the right track to take your business up a notch.

 

 

Rob Sattler
‘Palm-Hits-Face’… The dreaded typo and how to avoid it.

 

“I always do my best proofreading after pressing send”

There’s nothing worse than sending an important email, publishing an article, or submitting a job application and then realising you’ve misspelled something…

Oh, hang on. There is something worse: Not realising at all.

As a professional writer, one of your first jobs is to become a grammar / spelling ‘nazi’. And that comes with a downside, because you start seeing typos, misspellings and grammar fails… all the time, all over the internet.

Even the guy who replaced President Obama in the White House needs to proofread:

 

"No dream is too big, no challenge is to great. Nothing we want for the future is beyond our reach."

 

Well done Donald. And they gave you the keys to the nukes…

When I saw this epic fail from someone that should know better (or at least have qualified people who can correct things for him), I realised it was time for a spelling & grammar article.

Hopefully, it'll save some of you from making colossal failures like this one.

 

Here are 5 ways to avoid dreaded typos (and making a goose of yourself professionally):

 

1.   Use a professional writing tool like Grammarly. EVERYONE SHOULD USE IT (Ok, that was a sales plug, but really, Grammarly is the spellcheck wonder tool of the twenty-teens). It’ll automatically pick up on all sorts of errors in your documents, as well as online.

You can even use a FREE version of it for most of your work online - check it out here.

(Yes... you should use it).

2.    Use your spellcheck tool in Word, Pages, etc. They’re free with your word processor. You just need to actually use them.

3.    AFTER having run a spellchecker, or Grammarlytake a moment to read your document / comment / article from top to bottom.

4.    Leave your work for a while (don't send it straight away). Professional copywriters will walk away from their desk or do a different project for a while, and then come back to their document later with a fresh mind. When you read something over and over, especially after having just written it, you’ll easily miss things that a fresh read can pick up on instantly. If it’s not urgent, don’t send it.

5.    Get someone to READ IT. This is especially important with key documents like a CV / Cover Letter, an important business proposal, or an article that’ll be read by hundreds of people (like this one - yes I did have a friend look over it). A different set of eyes looking over your writing can pick up on all sorts of things that you’d otherwise miss.

If you have a problem when it comes to spelling and grammar, that's totally ok.

Even Richard Branson struggles (he has Dyslexia and had difficulty at school) but he didn't let that hold him back.

Whatever you do, just don’t use poor spelling as an excuse for why you haven't done something - you don't need to when there are a huge number of great tools that can help you turn out amazing work, error free.

When you send emails or documents with errors that have your name (and the company’s name) on them, you’re damaging your reputation and potentially losing business.

Ask yourself, would you take critical advice from a lawyer who’s emailed you with terrible spelling; or a medical specialist who has awful grammar? 

No, you’d be looking for another one, because in the back of your mind you’ll be wondering what else they’re doing wrong.

(And on that point – if you work at a legal practice and don’t have a professional spelling and grammar tool like Grammarly running, you’re really putting yourself at risk of failure.)

Where is it ok to misspell a few things, or ignore good grammar?

Other than drunk-texting your friends at 2 am? Well, even that counts too.

With content being online (sometimes forever) you’re likely to have screen captures of your messages come back to haunt you later. The lesson there is, if you're going to text (or tweet - I'm looking at you, Donald) at 2 am, at least use good spelling and punctuation.

Spelling and grammar matter all of the time, even when you're commenting on a post on LinkedIn or a business Facebook page. You need to remember that YOUR FACE AND NAME are permanently logged beside your poor writing…

Which, as our friend Donald has discovered, reduces your credibility instantly, leaving an impression of rushing, recklessness, and lack of due care and attention.

Here are some basic things to look for in everything you write (including your 2 am text messages while inebriated):

·     Use capitals at the start of sentences.

·     Use full-stops at the end of sentences.

·     Use a capital letter for names, including people and businesses.

·     Don’t use ALL CAPS unless you really need to (some terrible eBay listings come to mind).

·     Use shorter sentences... I shouldn’t need to take a second breath just to be able to finish reading your sentence.

·     There is a difference between there, their, they’re. There's also a difference between you're and your. Learn the difference and get it right.

Take the time to do things properly, it’s worth it

We’re not perfect, it’s part of being human. Even I’ve sent things with a spelling mistake before (and literally had the palm-hits-face moments we joke about).

The thing to remember is to take your time. Rushing is the biggest failure of any writer, and the creator of the greatest number of mistakes.

It’s totally ok to speed-type at 250 words per minute to smash out the idea while it’s fresh in your mind. But don't then rush to press 'send' straight away.

Look over your words, make sure they flow, and that everything you’ve said makes sense. It takes hours to write great work, and seconds for it to lose all of the impact it was meant to generate.

Yours in awesome spelling,

Rob Sattler

PS: If your company needs help with your writing, whether it’s proofreading, writing sales emails that convert, or simply a rework of the text on your website, just let me know. You can contact me at rob@getcopy.com.au or 0414 990 360.

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3 Good Reasons Why You Need More Sales

Every business is about transactions – either providing a service or a product, in a few big orders (or a lot of regular little ones).

And in business - if ‘transactions’ stop, your business stops growing too. Which is why it's important to focus on sales.

I’m extremely grateful to have worked for some of the most entrepreneurial people in Australia, both in my previous sales career and now in my copywriting business (GetCopy).

The one thing I’ve learnt that stands out above all else? That sales make the world go ‘round...

 

Here’s 3 GOOD REASONS Why You Need More Sales:

1.  SALES drive momentum – when you’re motivated to build your sales volumes, you also build momentum right across your business. More sales means more output (like stock, labour, hours etc)…  and when you’re thinking about sales, you’re also thinking about resourcing. The other thing is your team will get excited, because more things will be happening and more money will be coming in through door. Which leads to point #2…

2.  SALES bring in profit (to do more things) ­– a business without a constant flow of new sales coming in is a business that’s on the way to dying. Regular, new sales bring in PROFIT, which can help you expand, stock up, hire new employees and pack cash away. Which leads to point #3…

3.  SALES keep your business growing and changing there’s nothing worse than having a business that isn’t going anywhere. It’s a recipe for staff to move on, customers to leave and for your business to fade into nothingness after missing the next wave of market innovation. The western concept of never-ending growth etc. is actually a fallacy (as it’s simply not possible) but in the context of your business’ lifetime, growth and change are very good things.

What’s the takeaway? FOCUS ON SALES…

  • Refine your sales processes to make sales as EASY and AUTOMATED as possible.
  • Don’t bog down your sales team with clunky sales tracking or needless reporting or long-winded contract processes… 
  • Automate, speed-up and simplify as many things as you can so that they can focus on making more money for the business.
  • And lastly – aim HIGH. One thing I learnt from working for one of Australia’s most successful telco entrepreneurs is that without an audacious sales goal, sales isn’t fun, nor inspiring.

Aim high, reward well, and watch your success grow.

I hope this article helps? For more sales tips and how-to’s for marketing and copywriting – check out www.getcopy.com.au today.

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Got A PLAN?

One of the biggest failings I used to have when writing sales copy was not having a plan for how the copy was going to go.

It often involved having an idea, getting started, then realising 2 hours later that the 4 or 5 pages I'd written was off the mark and didn't cover all of the key points.

Don't let that be you.

Writing with a plan is simple. Here's the 5 key steps (plus 1 bonus):

  1. Read the brief you've got and do any extra research required then note down the key selling points.
  2. Work out what you must cover (the minimum to get the conversion) and have some options as 'extras' in case your copy needs something to bolster conversions when the main points are covered.
  3. Write your headline, all of your subheadlines and your CTA.
  4. Flesh out the rest of your copy, following the flow of your subheadlines and CTA.
  5. Go back and check you've covered every key selling point that needs to be mentioned to get the conversion.
  6. Drink wine, congratulate yourself. 

It's really not that hard - but if you skip this step, you just won't produce copy that's as good as it could be.

 

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4 out of 5 won't read past your headline...

Make your headlines amazing...

  1. Tell your prospect what your page is about

  2. Tell them a benefit

  3. Make it captivating

  4. And do it all in 8-9 words (or less)

You can do it... Just write several and then pick the best one.

Pro Tip: If your prospect reads your headline (email subject, web page headline or landing page) and can't tell (a) what you do and (b) some immediate benefit to them then START OVER. ;-)

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Why it's a bad idea to write the way you think you should...

Keep it conversational... 

If you're sitting down to write a promotional piece, a new page for your website or simply an autoresponder email, there's only one thing you need to remember: to keep it conversational.

Because writing 'sales copy' isn't about selling in the way you might think it should be.

Selling in print (whether it's online or offline) is all about having a conversation - simply telling people about what you have to offer and why they should get it from you.

Nothing fancy, no 'special sauce' required.

And if you think that just because you're a big corporate, a law firm or even a technical company, that you need to use heavy technical jargon to look like you know what you're talking about - you're sadly wrong.

- Every publicly facing piece of copy needs to be written in a simple, easy-to-understand, conversational style or you'll risk losing engagement with your audience.

For instance:

WRONG 

"Our technical specialists will analyse your spectrometer results using algebraic computations on our cloud server infrastructure while instituting the highest degree of compilation skills".

RIGHT 

"Our experienced technical staff will analyse your spectrometer results using a combination of cloud servers and software to provide you with a high degree of accuracy and a better overall result"

- It's still technical, but a fifth grader could understand it (which is the level that sales copy should always be written for).

The other reason for conversational copy? 

Conversational copy is so much more enjoyable to read... When you're on a page where you can easily follow what's being said, it relates to you and gets your mind thinking about how this could solve your problem / fulfil you desire - then it's good copy.

If it's using lots of exclamation marks and sounds like it's either too boring (technical and not engaging) or too 'in your face' (like that used car salesman cliché), then it's not going to win.

How do you write conversationally then?

It's actually a lot easier than you think.

So many people 'struggle' to write conversational sales copy but it's simply like talking. Just like I am with you right now - it's no different.

When you overcompensate, try to be tricky and write as if you're an 'expert', that's when no one will care for what you're offering (or worse, even finish reading what you've written).

Here's a simple formula for sales copy - 

1. Uncover a problem they have like this "We understand that for some spectrometer users, getting good quality results can be tough"

2. Confirm it for them like this: "And for some researchers, even finding a provider that can compile their results using good quality software and hardware is challenging"

3. Tell them what you can do, like this: "We're here to change the way researchers get their results compiled. Our comprehensive software runs on cloud servers with huge capacity, so no matter how big or small your project is, we can help you for an affordable price"

4. Tell them how to get it (easily), like this: "Getting started is really simple - just get in touch with our analysis team (here) about the challenges you've faced with your spectrometer results and we'll contact you shortly. We look forward to getting you the quality data you're hoping for."

Maybe a little fictitious - but even for a highly technical business, the copy can be very simple yet still get the point across professionally.

My main tip - don't overthink it, just write like you're having a conversation with someone. 

Write well, 

Rob.

PS: For more info on how you can write more fluidly, check out our copywriting blog here.

Why your choice of business name is critical

You might not realise it, but your business name says so much about what you’re about. Just like the first 30 seconds of meeting someone new, your business name gives an impression too.

If you've chosen a name that just has a personal significance to you, but not to your potential customers, you're going to make it harder for yourself before you even make the first sales call.

Unfortunately, names of things are subconsciously analysed by people so if your business name doesn’t give an indication of what your business is about, then you’re setting yourself up for a challenge, right from the start. 

That's why you need to put ego aside and choose a trading name that speaks to your clients needs, desires and wants.  Not some funky name you've liked since you were a kid. 

Here’s 5 Ways To Choose The Perfect Business Name

  1. Use the name of your product, service, or industry in your name. Humans like things to be simple, so by having words in your business name that state what you do or offer means that prospective customers instantly know what you’re about.  ‘ZTA Pty Ltd’ doesn’t tell me anything about your business, whereas ‘ZTA Home Cleaners Pty Ltd’ will have me calling you if I’m looking for my house to be cleaned.
  1. Keep it short. I know, that sounds like another copywriting virtue (and it is). Again, humans like simplicity, so if your business name is 2 or 3 words, or a modern single word variation that comprises two words, like ‘Megaport’, then you’ll get more engagement instantly. Having 4 or 5 words in your business name is way too long. 
  1. Don’t use funky spellings. I know you might have a ‘thing’ for a particular business name that has a unique spelling but if you have to spell the business name every time you use it, then you’re making it harder to do business with you. You’re also setting yourself up for a lot of future problems with transactions, as your clients or suppliers will miss-spell your name on invoices and other documents, as well as missing out on many web searches because people can’t spell your web address correctly. You might be tempted personally, but remember - it’s not about you.
  1. Check that you can get a domain for it. Yes, we’re in 2016 and if you don’t think ‘web address’ when you’re thinking ‘business name’, then you’re going to have problems. Don’t go losing potentially thousands of dollars in future business all because a prospect can’t search for you online because you’ve insisted on a business name that doesn’t have the domain to match.
  1. Create a list of EVERY possible business name first. Seriously, spend the time to write down at least 50 different business names or combinations so that you’ve covered every single keyword that describes what you do or the product you provide. You might have one company name in mind but you’d be surprised what can happen when you brainstorm a list – you might just see something a whole lot better!

I started with 'Thousand Dollar Copy' as I thought it sounded 'cool' and 'valuable' but customers thought we might be too expensive before even getting a quote. Fail...

'GetCopy' on the other hand is simple and tells them what we do. It also subliminally gives them the confidence that we'll deliver on what they want (that's the power of using the word 'get').

And now... We've got so much work on I need to start saying 'no'.  :-)

Cheers, 'Rob the Copywriter'

Rob Sattler - GetCopy.com.au

PS:  Got an existing business name that you think you could have done better with? Do a name change and use it as a great excuse to get in touch with all of your customers again, update your website and your marketing all in one. It'll be almost like starting afresh!

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7 Reasons Why Your Business NEEDS Great Copywriting

Great copy is soooo important...

Why do I need great copywriting?  Let me put it to you straight:  

In this time of fast-moving internet advertising, hundreds of competing options and short attention spans, you're losing customers if your copy isn't amazing.

Put simply - crap copy equals lost $$$'s. Period.

 

So what can you do about it?

Well, you see a lawyer when you need legal advice and a doctor when you're unwell. Which is why smart businesses hire professional copywriters when they need to update their website, marketing materials or email autoresponders.

 

Here's the 7 Reasons Why Your Business NEEDS Great Copywriting-

 

  1. Poorly written copy is worse than having no copy at all. You'll lose customers if you have copy that's boring, poorly spelt or simply doesn't read well. You might as well just delete it and write 'call us on xxxxx xxxx'. You'd do better.
  2. The world's top marketers START with a copywriter. The biggest selling products in infomercials, high traffic websites and Fortune 500 companies are almost all written by sales copywriters. Great copywriters know how to sell using words. If it works for them, why aren't you doing it too?
  3. Copywriting PAYS for itself. Great copywriting is an investment in the same way as a top-performing salesperson. Except with copywriting, you only pay the copywriter once yet your copy works 24x7 for you - with no lunch breaks.
  4. Your business' reputation depends on it. Your website, landing pages and automated emails are the face of your business and if they're poorly done, then you're happily telling the world that your standards are low. Are they low? We wouldn't think so, which is why your copy needs to match how you do business in person.
  5. Copywriting can bring in 5x, 10x, 100x more business than 'normal' website copy. Think you can't justify spending $1,000 to $2,000 having your website written professionally? Unless you're selling paperclips one-at-a-time, 5x your revenue would have to be a lot more than $1,000.
  6. Sales Copywriters (or Direct Response Copywriters like us) know how to structure every single word, paragraph, headline, action statement to get the biggest results. We know what should and shouldn't be included in the copy as well as how to match the tone and style to your audience.
  7. Great copywriting simply makes your audience go 'WOW'. Which means they subscribe, call, and buy from you, rather than your competitors.

Your business deserves written words that put you in a good light and produce a profit for you. So get your website looked at for improvements by a good copywriter - and make sure they explain exactly why the changes they'll make will help improve your results.

If you'd like a FREE review of your website copy or a quote for having your website, landing page or email series written by us, then get in touch at rob@getcopy.com.au right now.

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5 Reasons Why SHORT Copy Is WINNING Copy

 

It's all too easy to use lots of words to tell your story but it's a huge challenge to do it with LESS words.  

  1. Visually it's much more appealing to look at (and less daunting to read)
  2. People get your point faster - humans are impatient
  3. You'll get more engagement, which leads to followers, which leads to customers
  4. People won't get bored (and click away).  But most importantly of all...
  5. Your conversions will be higher - shorter copy ALWAYS gets more signups, shares and sales than longer copy

So in other words.  Go Short.  If you can use half the words, then use HALF THE WORDS.

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Sometimes it's not about selling

Copywriting is 'Salesmanship in Print' - which is mostly true.  

But sometimes it's not about selling, it's about getting key information onto a page so that your website visitors can get what they want and make a decision quickly.

We've all been guilty of building up a big story to sell something, I certainly have been both in face-to-face selling as well as in writing copy.  When you're trying to compel a complete stranger to take up your service / buy your product, it's justified to give them a carefully worded preamble to get them into the right frame of mind to spend money with you.

If you're dealing with a highly educated audience however, that preamble could have you lose their interest.  

This is especially the case if you offer higher end services or products and you're using Google Adwords or some other form of paid traffic to get your visitors.  If they're savvy, they just want the facts and the opportunity to take action.  

Here's 5 things to avoid when dealing with savvy website prospects:

  1. Don't 'build them up' first with a story.
  2. Don't 'sell' to them, just tell them. Be simple about it.
  3. Don't use a headline or sub-headline that's fancy.  Just tell them what you do and give them a benefit in the same sentence (if possible).
  4. Long paragraphs - get to the point ok!  If you can use half the words, then use half the words.
  5. Give them a great closing offer, like a FREE report, FREE consultation, FREE strategy session, so that if they've read what they want to hear / found what they're looking for, they'll go straight for the offer.

Remember to ask yourself:  "If i'd just clicked on an ad and landed on this [your] webpage, would be getting the info I want quickly and have an opportunity to buy?"

If the answer is no, then you've got some work to do.  

Here's to great copywriting,

Rob.

PS:  If you'd like a review of your website copy for $99 (refundable off any work we do), then get in touch with me here.  Some simple improvements could make a massive difference to your website's profitability. 

 

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It's just a conversation.

Selling is talking, and copywriting is no different.

Just write like you're talking with someone, then go back and make sure your sentences are crisp, concise and that they flow well.

Then go back again and remove any words that don't directly add to the copy.

If you've done that and it reads in an engaging way, then you're onto a winner. 

 

Rob.

 

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