freelance copywriter, copywriting tips, white papers, rainmaking tips

There is a famous ad by David Ogilvy, which illustrates the importance of advertising. A stern-faced executive looks out across his desk at the reader, and says:

I don’t know who you are.
I don’t know your company.
I don’t know your company’s product.
I don’t know what your company stands for.
I don’t know your company’s customers.
I don’t know your company’s reputation.
Now—what was it you wanted to sell me?

Better than any other message I know, this ad sums up what faces any business that has not done any marketing BEFORE they come in contact with a would-be customer.

Let’s say you are starting from scratch and have the job of promoting a new company, with no reputation, no established customer relationships and no brand identity. (And by the way, even if you do have all these things going for your company, may I suggest that this is still a worthwhile exercise. The reason is all these things can fade away from a customer’s mind if you don’t keep building them).

Promoting a company and its product or service is first a matter of identifying the people with a problem you can solve. In a recent article called, Freelance Copywriter Secrets: You're Really Just Selling Aspirin, the point was made that people are more strongly motivated to stop or avoid pain than they are to acquire something valuable.

The second step is to build and promote a brand. Build your brand on your product or service’s most singular benefit (see, Freelance Copywriter Secrets: It's the Brand, Stupid!). M&M candy could have been promoted as a great tasting chocolate candy, but everyone else promoted their candy’s taste. Instead they promoted the hard candy shell with the benefit of, “melts in your mouth, not in your hands.”

Likewise, Dominos Pizza could have promoted the taste of its pizza, but everyone else talked about how great their pizzas tasted. So they promoted their fast delivery, with their 30 minute guarantee.

Persuasion is finding the most direct line between a problem and its solution. The straighter that line, and the more uncluttered your message, the more your brand identity gets through. And you won’t have to worry about that stern-faced executive who has never heard of you or your reputation.

freelance copywriter, copywriting tips, white papers, rainmaking tips


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