I learned these from the legendary Drayton Byrd, and if you will apply these to your advertising copy, you will be writing better copy that sells more products and services.

 The 7 Deadly Sins of Ad Copy

1. Talking about yourself instead of your customer.

The question that your readers are asking is “what’s in it for me.”  If you’re not answering that question, they’re not going to be interested in what you have to say.  People don’t care about you; what they care about is themselves and their problems.

2. Failing to make your point fast.

Prospects are not going to read your copy if they don’t understand where you’re headed.  Tell them up front and then build on what you’ve told them.  We live in the short attention span age.  Don’t expect people to dig deep into your copy to find your point.

3. Using fancy language.

No one is going to be awed by your phenomenal vocabulary.  Put your copy into simple, plain words, and skip the big words, the jargon, and everything else that makes copy sound stilted or pompous.

4. Failure to quantify the benefit.

Drayton says,  “Don’t be vague. Be specific. People are drowning in promises. They are sceptical. Don’t tell me I’ll get rich or lose weight. Tell me how rich or slim. And how fast.”

5. Relying on logic rather than emotion.

People buy on emotion and justify their purchases with logic AFTER they’ve purchased.  If you want to get the buy, go for the emotions.   Zig Ziglar, one of the greatest salesmen even, once said, “Logic makes people think, and emotions make people act.”

6. Trying to be clever.

The first commandment from from the Hall of Fame advertising guru David Ogilvy was “Your role is to sell, don’t let anything distract you from the sole purpose of advertising.”  That includes trying to be clever.  Here’s another Ogilvy quote: “In the modern world of business, it is useless to be a creative, original thinker unless you can also sell what you create.”

7. Not giving every sensible reason to buy – and overcoming every objection.

This is why long copy generally outsells short copy.  Long copy gives you the space to lay out every good reason to buy and to negate every objection.  It’s still true: the more you tell, the more you sell.

Those are Drayton Byrd’s 7 deadly sins and if you will apply these to your advertising copy, you will write better copy.  If you need help creating the great advertising that sells products and services, click here.

I invite your comments and questions, and your likes and shares.



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