Thursday, 31 March 2016

Nigel Woollsey - Cardinal Copywriting - Angela Adams Photography Ltd

Many thanks to the terrific Angela Adams Photography for featuring Cardinal Copywriting in her blog. Lovely lady, brilliant photos!
from Cardinal Copywriting

Saturday, 26 March 2016

The value of website copywriting and other mysteries of the Universe

The Bermuda Triangle. The riddle of Atlantis. Who was Jack the Ripper? Is the whole of reality merely a hologram projected onto the eleven-dimensional surface of a Euclidean rhomboid? Why would anyone voluntarily watch 'The Only Way is Essex'? 

These are the great unsolved mysteries of our time - pondered over by intellectual giants, such as Plato, Professor Stephen Hawking and Danny Dyer from Eastenders.

But there still remains one question that towers above all these. The question which has vexed copywriters from the dawn of time:

Why do so few businesses understand the value of website copywriting?

Whilst the critical importance of having a smart website is taken as being blindingly obvious to anyone possessing an IQ higher than a glass of dirty water - the equally vital element of having good quality written content is seen more as an optional add-on. 

Imagine if we applied this logic to buying a new car. 

Having spent a modest sum you take collection of your shiny, new vehicle...and the first thing you do is fill the tank with homemade petrol you've distilled in the garden shed from old paint thinner and supermarket value-brand vodka.

Unsurprisingly, the result would be to turn your costly investment from something designed to convey you from A to B in style, comfort and safety, to a rather expensive lump of scrap metal. 

So why do so many businesses do exactly this by insisting on filling their brand new, beautifully designed company website with content which they've written themselves?

The answer, of course, is money. An amazing number of businesses pour their entire budget into website design without a single thought about the written content. Faced with an urgent need to produce 2000 words of SEO friendly, professionally written sales copy which actively engages their potential customer's interest they will:

a) Panic. Copy a competitor's website text, alter a few words and then wonder why they are not attracting customers because the search engines have penalised them for duplicate content (Possibly followed by a nice big lawsuit for copyright infringement &/or plagiarism)

b) Ask their Web Designer to 'cobble some content together'. Said web designer realises that their strength lies in website design and not copywriting but manages to write something vaguely OK which, although it fills the pages with words, provides no real benefit to the client in terms of sales or SEO.

c) Contact a website copywriter. The copywriter listens carefully to their needs and produces a quote for writing smart, targeted copy which will be loved by both search engines and their chosen audience. However, despite spending £2000 on their website the business balks at spending less than half that on decent copy - They resort to either a) or b)

ProfessionalSEO website copywriting is a long term investment in your business - helping you not only get found on Google but persuading customers that you have the solution to their needs.

Forget that and it's likely that your expensive website might well disappear into the Bermuda Triangle of internet obscurity...

Copywriting: You don't have to be mad to work here...

"It is a truth universally acknowledged that a business in possession of a website must be in want of a copywriter..." - Extract from Jane Austen's unpublished work, Pride & Punctuation.

So, the first thing we need to get straight is that this is likely to get very silly. At times, it may get a bit ranty. Also, going off at a tangent is a distinct possibility. 

For a copywriting blog you may well wonder why we seem to have stayed into topics as diverse as time travel, self-shaving goats, why your most productive writing period is never when you are sitting in front of a laptop trying to be productive and, of course, the complete folly of trying to write with an octopus.

But stay with me. In amongst the insane ramblings you might...possibly...find something useful and (dare I say) vaguely amusing...possibly.

Trust me, the line between creative genius and being mad as a box of frogs is perilously thin.
The great thing is that virtually all the other copywriters I've ever had the pleasure of knowing are - to one extent or another - bonkers. Oh, they might be able to conceal it during meetings to discuss your new website content, but trust me: behind that professional demeanour is a mind filled with banana juggling monkeys on unicycles.

For one reason or another we just don't think like other people. Copywriters are masters at being able to look at the world from a slightly different perspective. It's the creative gene in us.

Take the recent First Direct TV ad: A duckbill platypus walking down the street to the sound of a 90's dance track. Crazy, yes? But it grabbed your attention a lot more than the standard banking advert of a black horse galloping through some pretty countryside, didn't it?

It's this kind of thinking out of the box that makes you stand out from the competition - and why smart businesses use copywriters.  

So, embrace the madness. Embrace a copywriter. Then give them a banana.

We love bananas.