When working on one of my very first projects (back in 1989), as I asked my client several questions, he eventually stopped and said “If I knew the answers to these questions, I wouldn’t need you, would I?”
Well, while copywriters may be wizards with words, we’re not mind-readers. And, gratefully, after he read the first draft of the brochure, my client agreed that he would never have been able to write the brochure himself.
Don’t be shy — tell your copywriter everything.
You see, you know your product/service best. A copywriter knows how to write to sell that product or service. So, don’t be shy. Tell her everything about it.
If your copywriter asks you a lot of questions, be grateful. The more you can tell her, the better your chances are of getting what you want — as soon as the first draft.
7 questions your copywriter should be asking:
To ensure that your copywriter has the tools to write you the captivating & compelling content you seek, be prepared to tell her:
1. Who is your ideal client? Tell her about their demographics, but don’t forget their lifestyle information (i.e. psychographics), their likes/dislikes, etc.?
2. What is the biggest issue facing your prospect/client? What pushes their buttons (i.e. what’s the problem that you have a solution for)?
3. What is your solution to their problem(s)? Keep in mind that people buy for one of two reasons: a) to gain something they do not have or b) to avoid losing something they now possess.
4. What is the single strongest benefit of your product/service? What is the one benefit that harnesses the greatest selling power?
5. What are the additional benefits? Features are not the same as benefits. If you have a list of features, take a closer look and convert them into benefits. For instance, a pencil has an eraser. That’s the feature. The benefit is you don’t have to be afraid to make mistakes. An eraser lets you wipe them out & start all over again.
6. Why should someone buy your product/service over the competition’s? What makes yours special so that your prospect wants only what YOU have to offer?
7. Whether it’s a sales page, web site, direct mail package, etc., what is the objective for the project at hand (i.e. lead generation, increase sales, drive traffic, build your brand)?
Being “nosey” helps me achieve my goal as a copywriter. That goal is to create a piece that captivates, compels and converts your prospects into loyal, raving fans.
If you have printed materials (marketing plan, brochures, testimonials, etc.), I’ll ask to see them. If you don’t, then we’ll keep talking and I’ll keep asking questions to help you determine what makes your product/service stand out.
“I was very pleased at how quickly Debra grasped our business …and how she asked all the right (write) questions to make it easy on me. In fact, some of her questioning was so in-depth that it helped me refine our own sales pitches.” – B. Bentz, Advanced Telecom Services
These 7 questions are just the “tip of the iceberg”, but should help you get started. Whether you retain the services of an independent copywriter or choose to work with a marketing or advertising agency, it’s important that you do “your homework” as well.
Remember, we’re not mind readers. We want to help you get the best results for your investment. Therefore, the more information you can provide, the better.
So is your copywriter nosey? Share your thoughts in the comments section below. I’d love to hear from you. Thanks!
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