Copywriting Tips to Drive Traffic and Sales

Copywrting tips

A copywriter must to use the most effective strategies to get viewers to click and continue reading. With so many sites competing for the limited attention of online viewers, you need a way to grab a reader’s attention and avoid having them click away before reading your message. Some essential copywriting guidelines to follow are listed below.

Copywriting that Gets Results

  • Write an effective headline. – The headline is key for grabbing a viewer’s attention. It needs to be compelling and intriguing, your viewers need to want to click and find out more. Spend time putting thought into your headline. This is the most important part of your copywriting. If your headline doesn’t motivate the viewer to click on the link and read on, the rest of what you say won’t really matter.
  • Use visual, rich media and alternative content display to grab users’ attention. – Using videos has been shown to be an effective communication tool, but images and graphs are also useful. The key is to present information in a novel, unexpected, and visually appealing way. Be careful not to use media that takes too long to load on the page. Studies have shown that even one second can make the difference between a viewer clicking away from the page or not. It’s been estimated that a third of viewers will abandon the page between one and five seconds if it has a slow load time.
  • Be informative. – Your content should offer something of value to the reader. With so many sites begging for online attention, your content needs to reward your viewers’ attention with something of benefit to them.
  • Be relatable. – This goes beyond just writing in a way that’s easy to read. While it’s important to use the right tone in speaking to the audience you’re targeting, you also want to make it easy for them to identify with what you’re saying. The use of personal narrative is an effective way of allowing the audience connect with your message.
  • Use keywords effectively. – Don’t overstuff your content with keywords. Use them in a logical way that flows naturally with the delivery of the information being presented.

Online consumers are bombarded with messages trying to grab their attention. You need to keep their limited attention span in mind. Getting viewers to click is the initial hurdle. After that, your words are the magic glue that keeps them from bouncing off of the page. With properly crafted content, your words will convert your viewers into customers.

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Can Social Media be Blamed for Munchausen Deaths?

Social media attention seeking

Can we really point the finger of blame at social media when mothers seek attention by deliberately inflicting injuries on their children? Munchausen by proxy syndrome is the name given to behavior of caregivers who purposely exaggerate, lie about, and/or induce physical, mental, and/or behavioral health problems in those under their care. It may be used to label a mother’s actions when she manufactures a child’s medical crises as a way to gain attention and sympathy. Researchers claim there’s a connection between a rise of Munchausen by Proxy Syndrome and social media’s impact on modern life. Munchausen syndrome is named after Barin von Munchausen, and 18th century German officer who was notorious for telling embellished tales of his past experiences.

Social Media and Attention-Seeking

Those who have an extreme need for attention-seeking can find ample opportunity to satisfy their needs through sites like Facebook, Google+, etc. Recently, the case of a New York woman accused of poisoning her child with salt came under scrutiny. Investigators found out Lacey Spears, frequently posted updates about her son’s frequent hospitalizations on Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, and a blog.

Many of us have seen more benign attention-seeking efforts on our social media networks. Facebook and Twitter are full of those mining for approval from others or fishing for sympathy. From posting selfies to status updates about friends and family members who are ill, social media provides endless opportunities for people to seek approval and support from others. Even posting messages seeking to raise awareness about important social, environmental, and political issues is typically motivated by a need to be acknowledged as the messenger of useful information.

The question then becomes what forms of attention-seeking should be rewarded? Most people I know want to avoid having drama queens in their life, due to how energy draining it can be to deal with them. The severity and frequency of the drama may be taken into consideration. Do you continuously reply with encouragement to a friend who has a new crisis to report every other day?

To call people who exhibit Munchausen’s syndrome drama queens is an understatement. Such people have a severe mental issue and need psychiatric intervention. Rewarding such twisted attention-seeking with sympathy and compassion exacerbates the problem and can contribute to further deadly behaviors. If you suspect someone you know has a mental illness that is driving extreme attention-seeking behaviors, what is the best way to handle it? Experts advise against rewarding such behavior with the attention and sympathy being sought. However, can withholding attention lead unstable people to inflict even worse harm on a child to get the attention they crave? I’d like to hear your suggestions for the best way to respond to extreme cases of online attention-seeking.

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Freelancing for Friends – Do Work and Friends Mix?

Freelance writing work for friends

Have you ever worked for a friend? Are you still friends?

Written Contracts – Are They Always Necessary?

A fellow blogger and close friend recently asked me to do a small freelance job and I accepted her offer via email. I helped her out for free when I was steadily employed, but told her I can no longer work for free now that I’m getting my freelance copywriter business off the ground. I’ve thought of this friend as a sister for several decades, due to the history we shared in our youth. I didn’t think it would be necessary to sign a formal work agreement, especially for only fifty dollars.

I thought about how many times I’d told others to always have a contract signed. Suddenly, I felt like a big hypocrite. I imagined what would happen if my dear friend decided to stiff me. While content writing isn’t making me rich at the moment, I’d be upset about more than money. Failure to get paid would be more upsetting because of the statement it made about our friendship. It’s frustrating to waste my valuable time and efforts, but I would be deeply hurt and demoralized to be used by a friend that way. Many others out in the business world- government agencies, corporate entities, etc. already mistreat me, I sort of expect it from others now. However, I still cling to the belief that I can count on my friends to value and respect me. It would really throw me for a loop to be taken advantage of by someone I considered a best friend. I’d hate to think she valued saving fifty dollars more than she valued our friendship or me. While I don’t value myself according to how others do, but it would still sting.

Drawing Boundaries in Business

I decided rather than risk losing a good friend or my faith in humanity, I should just refuse to work for a friend again. If someone offers me a job, I will accept only if the money is more important to me than the friendship. That’s just how it’s going to have to be now. I’ve learned over the years I must set healthy boundaries. Pain has been a motivating factor in setting up boundaries, I’ve established more than a surveyor’s map by now. I prefer to erect boundaries before, rather than after the suffering, but don’t want to become isolated inside too many barricades either. If you’ve been burned by a friend and have since set the same boundary, please share. If you think I’m going overboard, I’d like to hear from you too.

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Google Plus – Just Another Facebook Clone?

Google+ Facebook

Many people mistake Google Plus for another Facebook copycat. However, these two social media channels are quite different, and serve different, but complimentary purposes.

Facebook vs. Google+ – Which is Better Overall?

Do you really need both social networks? The answer depends on what you’re using them for. Facebook is great for staying in touch with those you know. Google + is great for meeting new people want to get to know. If you want to use social media to connect with old friends and keep up with their latest shenanigans for personal reasons, Facebook is a great way to do that. It can seem like a never-ending high school reunion. However, if you’re seeking to network with others who share similar interests for personal or business reasons, Google+ is the way to go.

Many haven’t jumped on the Google+ bandwagon because they don’t see their friends on there. They feel somewhat lost without a familiar surrounding of friends and family. However, once you get familiar with how it works, Google Plus offers a very friendly community, and many opportunities to meet exciting new people who share your interests.

Which has the Best Features?

Again, the answer depends on what you’re using the platform for. We’ll compare some of their popular features below:

  • Posts – Facebook posts are more geared toward finding out what’s happening in your friends’ lives, and, offers posts focused more on entertainment value. Google Plus offers more informative content and is more focused on sharing knowledge about interests. If you want to learn more about hobbies, business development, education, science, entertainment, etc., Google + posts supply an endless fountain of information on topics of interest you want to discuss and share knowledge about. Google Plus also gives you more flexibility in posting, since you can disable comments and reshares on a post, tag people in updates by using the @ or + signs, and send the update via email to your circles and extended circles.
  • Connecting with Others – While it may be easier to find those you already know on Facebook, G+ makes it easier to meet new people. As you add people to your profile, Google has you decide on a circle to place them in. Google+’s custom circles offer more flexibility and ease in organizing people by the categories you create. You can target posts to particular circles, as well as choose to make it public or direct it to individuals. For example, a band might create different circles for local bands, promoters, groupies, booking contacts, fellow musicians, studio owners, journalists, etc. Another advantage of circles is that if someone adds you, you aren’t automatically going to see their posts in your feed unless you add them back.

Communities are another feature that Google has an edge in. Due to the productivity tools bundled into the G+ platform, the sharing and learning that takes place in its communities is taken to a whole new level.

  • Visibility – Right now, Facebook has way more social sharing activity However, Google+’s activity and users are quickly growing, thanks to the 100’s of millions of new Android phone activations each year. Google’s Android operating system directly connects users to a G+ profile. Also, due to Google’s own search engine, Google+ posts will be weighted more and rank higher in search results.
  • Chat vs. Hangout – Through Hangouts, Google has added a audiovisual component to chat that takes personal interaction a step beyond. Getting a like on a Facebook page doesn’t engage friends, customers and fans in the same way that interacting on a more personal level does. Hangouts On Air can also be conducted, which are broadcast worldwide and can be archived in your Youtube channel.
  • Images – Google Plus allows additional photo options, such as automated animation for images. Check it out, it’s pretty cool.

The above is a comparison of select features, there are many others that could be compared. While Google+ is still young and its future is yet to be seen, there’s no denying Google’s powerful reach. Do you consider either network, or both, to be a waste of time? Can’t live without one or both? Leave a comment and let’s hear what you think.

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