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5 Ingredients Every Piece of Copy Needs to be Effective

In college, I majored in communications with a minor in journalism. I worked hard to develop an editorial style of writing and communicating. While that served me well for publishing articles and books, however, when I started my coaching business it did not help me convert leads into sales. As I watched one ad campaign after another fail, I started to evaluate my messaging. It became apparent that my natural style of writing was not serving me well in getting people (leads) to see why they needed to work with me.

So, I started to study what other experts, like Jim Edwards, were doing and realized I needed to make some minor tweaks in my approach. If you’ve been struggling to get your copy to convert, try tweaking these five ingredients in your copywriting mix and start converting more leads into paying customers.


In college, I’d spend hours developing a great headline for stories. I can’t tell you how many times my professor sent back my headlines for more finesse. Being a practical woman, I would never push the envelope far enough to really be an attention grabber. Think of your headline as your first impression. You only have a split second to grab your potential customer’s attention. Your headline is your chance to make them stop and read your email or social media post.

Your headline should be about your audience, be clear about what they will get by reading your content, elevate an objection or provide some kind of time sensitivity. Here are three simple recipes for cooking up some great headlines:

“How to” headlines:

How to Get _______________ How to generate more quality leads

How to ____________ in as little as __________ How to generate more quality leads in as little as 10 days

How to ________ in as little as …. Even if you __________! How to generate more quality leads in as little as 10 days... Even if you have never created a lead magnet before!

“Ways to” headlines:

5 Quick and easy ways to _________ 5 Quick and easy ways to generate better-qualified leads

3 Fast ways to get _________ and avoid _________ 3 Fast ways to get more better-qualified leads and avoid sounding salesy

5 Quick and easy ways to get ______ ….even if _________! 5 Quick and easy ways to get more qualified leads...even if you have you’re just starting out!

“Mistake” headlines:

Which of these _______ mistakes will you make? Which of these copywriting mistakes will you make?

______ mistakes all _________ need to avoid! Copywriting mistakes all coaches need to avoid!

_______ mistakes all _________ need to avoid...even if ________! Copywriting mistakes all coaches need to avoid...even if you majored in journalism!

Shocking Statement

Right after your salutation, you want to open with a shocking statistic or fact. You want to stop your reader in their tracks and make them wonder what you will have to say about that statement. This statement will come out of your market research and it should be tied to your avatar’s biggest pain point. If your target market was “new coaches” you might try a statement like this:

“Why 70% of New Coaches Never Make it to Year Three!”

“Why 90% of Life Coaches Only Earn $24K a Year!” “75% of Coaches Spend Up to 80% of Their Time Searching for Leads!”

If you’re a new coach, those statements should hit you right between the eyes. You want your reader to think, “<GASP!!!> That could be me!”

Compelling Bullet Points

Most people don’t have time to read through every email in their inbox or every post in their social media feed so you have to make it easy for them to consume your content. Bullet points are the magic ingredients that build curiosity and give people a reason to take action. An action could be scheduling a phone call, signing up for a course, or clicking a link to buy your product.

Great bullet points will:

  • Build curiosity and create an internal pressure to act

  • Grab people’s attention so you can address their needs, wants or desires

  • Communicate important information quickly

Word of caution, don’t confuse features with benefits. Your potential customers will never buy based on features, they want to know what your product or service will do for them. For example:

  • How much money will you help them make?

  • How much time will you save them?

  • How much anxiety or worry will you eliminate for them?

  • How will their status change with their family and friends?

  • What type of comfort will they experience?

Focus on these types of benefits in your bullet points and you’ll find that your readers will take action.

The basic formula to use when developing bullet points is:

It ______ so you can _______

Let’s say you’re targeting aspiring tennis player, your bullet points might look something like this:

  • You’ll discover how to use the “forehand crusher” technique to hit like a pro, every time!

Or, you’re targeting people with autoimmune issues:

  • Learn how to supercharge and restore your immune system, so you can FIGHT any illness like a SUPERHERO!

Or, an aspiring author:

  • Master this step-by-step process to actually produce a REAL e-book completed in just 72 hours!

Remember when you’re writing your bullet points that one size does not fit all. Be specific and compelling to help your potential customer see how they will benefit from working with you or buying your product.

A Clear CTA

For years I had an aversion to sales. I hate being sold to and I didn’t want to sound like the people who totally turned me off. This is a powerful technique I learned, some call it the “Columbo” method, for extending a friendly invitation to take the action you want them to take without sounding pushy or salesy. Instead of a “hard” sell like “click here to buy,” try using one of these phrases:

  • Hey, did you realize?

  • Oh, before I forget….

  • Oh, one more thing….

  • Hey, did you know?, or my favorite

  • By the way, did you know….

These little segues make it easy to transition into an ask without applying pressure. You can use this technique in the body of an email, as a PS, or in a social media post.

Personal Close

And finally, you want to make your close personal. You want your reader to feel like they are talking with a friend who knows them by name. When your potential customer feels seen, heard, and understood you have done your job. Copywriting, like any skill, takes practice. You just need to have a recipe for how to construct your copy so it flows correctly. Just like baking a cake, you want to use the proper ingredients in the right order to get the result you’re expecting.

By the way, if your copywriting isn’t converting, check out the replay for my Masterclass: 5 Things you Need to Know About Your Avatar to Write Copy Like a Pro! so you can start converting leads into paying clients.

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