Did you know that 69% of marketers are planning to increase their content marketing budget in 2023? This means one thing for sure – more and more realize that engaging, quality copy is important for business. Therefore, copywriting mistakes should be avoided.
With web content, you only have one shot to impress the reader. And the first few seconds are crucial. As most people online scan web copy, not read it word for word, it is a must to get them hyped avoiding these common copywriting mistakes.
Missing The Point
A big no-no in copywriting is building content that does not match the target audience. If you don’t know what your readers are looking for, what problems they have to stumble upon your article, their background etc., then how can you expect your content to perform well?
Defining the buyer persona for your business is a good place to start. To craft a stellar copy that matches their profile, you need to do proper research on the market, current trends, competitors, as well as customers’ common pain points.
For example, let’s say you are writing this post for the blog of a WordPress agency. Their clients, and site visitor who read their content, would want to know about how to avoid copywriting mistakes that could hurt their website performance and SEO rankings.
Now, if the content was intended for an English language school blog, it would lean towards the importance of correct grammar, proofreading, ways to practice your language skills and so forth. The reason – the audience here would be people who are learning English, so SEO tips wouldn’t be something they’d be interested in.
Not Getting The Tone Right
The tone of the content can either make or break the engagement. People like to read interesting stories and casual, yet informative reads. On top of that, the overall message must be clear and to the point.
Using too much technical jargon could end up confusing your readers, thus making them bounce off your website in no time. If the content is too formal, it will sound like a school essay and lose its fun factor.
A good way to find the optimal tone is by asking yourself if you would read the post if you were part of the target audience. Would you take away something from it? Is it engaging enough? Does it address their needs appealingly and understandably? Is it meant for B2B or B2C?
The tone needs to be consistent as well. As you write more and more posts, try to keep in mind the goal of your website and write based on it.
Your readers can see through generalisations like “Welcome to our blog” ,”we have been in the business for years”, or, or, in our case, “Copywriting is hard, but there are some common mistakes we should all know and avoid”. Such introductions won’t get you anywhere as they are not informative, sound too generic and don’t meet the reader halfway.
The first lines of your post must grab readers’ attention and make them want to carry on reading. This means you can use a statistic, a real-life story, an anecdote that relates to the topic etc. This way, you will engage your readers from the start, as well as make them more interested in what’s to come.
You can also use a question and go on with providing the answer. This way, you will get straight to the point without any fluff or unnecessary words.
Not optimizing your content for search engines is bad, but stuffing it with your focus keyword is even worse! Google penalizes content that does not offer real value to the readers, so try your best to craft a post that meets their informational needs and delivers quality without having keywords popping up every other sentence.
On top of keyword research and optimization, you can use internal linking as a way to boost SEO performance from within the post. Linking relevant posts or pages from your site will help readers find the content they need faster, as well as make it easier for Google to crawl and index the page.
Too Formal/ Too Casual
Web writing should be conversational to engage the audience. However, there is a fine line between conversational and casual. To avoid sounding too informal, some writers use complex sentences and academic language. This is a mistake as it can scare off readers. A simple way to prevent this is to add conversational phrases like “you see” or “can’t” instead of “cannot” to your writing.
At the same time, don’t forget to be professional. Slang or curse words have no place in a blog post, even if it is casual. The language should remain respectful and appropriate for all types of readers.
Also, be wary of idioms and use them only if it will enhance what you have to say. That said, don’t include them just to appear fancy or show off your way with words.
Relying On AI A Bit Too Much
With the arrival of ChatGPT and the hype AI has been causing lately, it is easy to get carried away and think that bots can do the job of copywriters better than humans. Although AI might have its uses, you should always take into account that nothing beats a creative mind when it comes to writing content.
AI cannot understand the context of certain topics or write with emotion when needed, which are essential for creating meaningful content. So use AI only as a tool to support your writing, but never depend on it fully.
Writing great copy is an essential skill that can make a huge difference in reaching out to customers. While there are many do’s and don’ts, avoiding the 6 common copywriting mistakes is perennially important – keep these in mind and you’re well on your way to writing great copy that resonates with people!
Have you encountered any other mistakes you think others should avoid when writing their own? Why not join our CEO Hangout Slack community and share them with us – we would love to hear from you! So here’s us wishing all marketers good luck as they set off on their journey of producing effective and memorable content!