Writing copy is all about conversion, getting your readers to take the action you want them to take.
There are many copywriting methodologies, just try a quick Google and see how many results you get – I got 14.6 million.
Of all the methodologies one has withstood the test of time – AIDA. First appearing in the late 1800s, AIDA is the acronym for “Attention, Interest, Decision, Action”.
These four words are the secret sauce to high converting copy.
Starting with your headline, you have to grab the reader’s attention from the get go.
Without the reader’s attention the rest of your copy is pointless as it’s not going to get read.
Once you have the reader’s attention then you have the rest of your copy to make the sale.
Getting attention doesn’t end with the headline, you have to keep pushing to keep the reader moving through your copy to your desired destination.
Now you need to stimulate the reader’s interest. This is a 3 stage process:
1. Introduce a problem
Market research for your product or service will have shown that there are problems in your niche that prospects need to solve. If not, you’re going to have an uphill battle to persuade your reader to take action.
For example, if you’re in the sleep solution niche, your prospects may be constantly fatigued, have problems concentrating and remembering things, or be prone to clumsiness and accidents.
Your product or service is probably designed to solve one or more of these problems. However, this is not the time to talk about your solution. Your job here is to introduce the problem(s) that your product or services solves better than the competition.
Continuing with our example, you could start with something like: “Are you constantly tired? Do you have problems remembering where you put things? If so, you could be suffering from…”
You then proceed to explain the problem, painting a detailed and easily recognisable picture.
Once the reader has a vivid picture in mind, you can continue onto the next stage.
2. Introduce a solution
By now you’re probably chomping at the bit to start telling your prospect about your solution. Don’t give in to the temptation, we’ll get there soon.
This stage is all about giving your prospect hope that the problem can be solved and that there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Your copy should move subtly towards your solution without explicitly introducing it. Instead you should explain how particular strategies can solve the problem but they are too complicated or inconvenient.
As the reader senses that you might be able to relieve the problem it is time to move into the last stage of “Interest”.
3. Introduce your product or service as THE solution
Your reader has read about the problem and the solutions you suggested. Now it’s time to bring the two together.
This is where your solution’s unique selling proposition (USP) kicks in.
Explain precisely how your product or service is a solution to the problem. Furthermore, explain how the reader’s life or business will be enhanced one they have your solution and can finally overcome the problem.
The AIDA methodology refers to the lead up to the call to action (CTA) as the “Decision”.
This is where you shift from introducing your product or service as THE solution to convincing your readers that they absolutely must have it.
Use copious quantities of benefit statements, proof and, if appropriate, bonuses to overcome any lingering doubts the reader may have. Maximise the probability of a positive action decision before the reader finishes this section.
Finally, it’s time for the CTA.
Reiterate the most persuasive benefits, make a guarantee to overcome resistance.
Have a clear, unmistakable call to action statement.
Include a PS and PPS to compel readers to take action to avoid missing out on an opportunity to solve their problem.