Website Copywriting Makes The Link With Content Marketing

‘COPYWRITING SHORTS’  #104 With ‘content marketing’ being the catch-all phrase of the moment, it’s hardly surprising that website copywriting is right up there, riding in the slipstream. As a highly experienced copywriter, creating ‘content’ is what I’ve always done.  The trick nowadays is to align your content with a meaningful marketing strategy – and therein lies the challenge. The optimal starting point has to be with your website.  This is the home of your online content, the hub to which everything else you do is linked.  The ‘content’ we’re talking about here includes what goes on your web pages, what goes into your blog, and what external content you choose to provide or engage with. These building blocks of your online content marketing strategy can be brought together brilliantly by social sharing on the sites of the usual suspects – Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn et al.  In case you’re not sure, ‘social sharing’ has become the go-to skill-set for post-Hummingbird SEO. How your content marketing strategy dovetails with the totality of your online marketing activities is a topic for another post.  In the meantime, you can find an introduction to copywriting techniques for your website and SEO by visiting the following Buzzwords’ pages: Web copy: www.buzzwords.ltd.uk/website-copywriter SEO:... Read more...

Is Everyone On Holiday – EXCEPT YOU?!

It’s that seasonal thing – a bit like Christmas, but a lot less predictable.  When your key suppliers jet off to the sun (and don’t bother telling you!), that can be mighty frustrating. August of course is the peak period, when travel companies and ice-cream men double their prices.  Because they can.  Take a closer look and you might spot your printer sunning himself on a Greek beach, or your web designer licking lollies with his wife and kids in Cornwall. Yes, holidays are A GOOD THING – unless you’re the one left behind in rainy Blighty, tearing your hair out trying to find a photographer, copywriter or some other supplier who isn’t already booked up in the sunshine way. Speaking as a copywriter, I’m in the fortunate position of being able to take my holidays off-peak.  May in Marrakesh or September in Side aren’t packed to the gunnels with the August crowd – and the prices are more agreeable too. It also means I’m available for projects when the rest of the world and his wife have thrown caution to the wind.  That’s not to say there aren’t frustrations… Chief among these are projects being shelved or put on the back burner.  Admittedly, that’s looking down the opposite end of the telescope from clients left in the lurch by suppliers who are  ‘en vacances’ but I suppose summer holidays are a cross we all have to bear in our different ways – until it’s our turn for the airport taxi to come knocking! If your copywriter has gone AWOL – or you’re looking for some fresh copywriting inspiration... Read more...

Seismic Shifts In Search: Google’s ‘Land-Grab’ For Online Revenues

Website copywriting is something I’ve been doing for over ten years.  During that time, changes have been many and far-reaching.  The techniques that drive and define online ‘success’ today are vastly different to what they were, even two or three years ago. Anyone who follows this industry will know that Google has been exercising its SEO muscle.  They’ve been hard at work driving out the ‘black hat’ SEO merchants who’ve used every trick in the book to help their clients achieve top search engine rankings for the most lucrative keywords in their industry. To be fair to Google, I’d say their actions are long overdue.  On the other hand, a major flaw in the search engine’s modus operandi has always been that the companies which achieve top rankings on search page listings (SERPs) are not necessarily the best at what they do.  They are top of the pile because their SEO is better than the next man’s. An attempt to change that came with Google’s Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird updates to the many criteria that go into creating what they call their ‘algorithms’.  Unfortunately, in driving out the ‘black hat’ SEO people, Google has also made it difficult for those who play by the rules to implement workable techniques. Rich Promise One by one, Google has all but trashed the techniques which have hitherto delivered on their promise of higher rankings.  Examples include keyword placement in meta tags and on-page copy; link building; online PR – and many others. Aspects of these criteria are still valid of course.  Keywords will always have a degree of significance (or how else... Read more...

Website Copywriters Walk Backwards To Christmas

When a would-be client calls and says: “We just want the Home page writing,” I always give the kind of introspective nod that would send shivers down the spine of the suicide squad.  Of course, I’m on the phone, so no-one has an inkling.  Visible or not, however, upon hearing those immortal words that will haunt me into the copywriters’ graveyard, I know right away that I should’ve written the definitive, all-knowing article on website copywriting LONG AGO – the one that explains, very patiently, that you can’t, don’t, won’t, shouldn’t write the Home page of a website first.  Not in a month of Sundays. Yes, I know the Home page is allegedly the most important page on any website, that it usually has the most visits, links and everything else.  That’s exactly why this prime piece of online real estate is deserving of a little more respect! Website owners: take responsibility! Think about this very carefully.  For a micro-second if you will… If you’re fortunate enough to have lots of website traffic, it’s likely – as we’ve said – that much of it will arrive at your Home page. Conventional wisdom has it that online visitors coming to your site have to be grabbed by the eyeballs in a matter of seconds.  If not, they’ll click off and head for the competition. Simple logic suggests, therefore, that the expectant surfer who’s arrived on your Home page will need to like what they see.  More to the point, they will need to see that the web page before them matches whatever it was they were looking for. So we’re... Read more...

Website Copywriting – A Street View

If the way websites work is totally alien to you – worry not, help is at hand.  And if you know next-to-nothing about website copywriting, this article will provide a good starting point for you to turn things around. Whilst it’s true that website copywriting may seem like an obscure topic to many people, there may come a time when you need to know more – or even get involved with the writing process yourself! That’s why it makes sense to find out what website copywriting involves.  Whether or not you want to become an exponent yourself is very much a personal choice.  Speaking as a freelance copywriter, I have a somewhat weighted view of the whole subject. Ironically, it’s the very skills I acquired over many years of copywriting that have convinced me everyone in business should at the very least understand the principles of web copywriting and its potential as a marketing tool. As with any learning curve, it’s important to start with a general overview of the subject and then drill down to the specifics.  In this case, you’re looking at the context in which websites operate, together with the influences that affect their success, or otherwise. When it comes to using actual copywriting techniques, it’s important to bear in mind that – almost more than any other marketing tool – websites do not work in isolation.   To begin at the beginning… Online marketing is complementary to offline marketing.  That much is obvious.  How online marketing skills are deployed depends on how responsive the market is to the overtures that online marketing makes.  In general,... Read more...