Tone of Voice: Has Conversational Copy Had Its Day?

There are 9 million bicycles in Beijing. That’s a fact [Source: Katie Melua]. There are 171,476 words in the English language according to the Oxford English Dictionary but you don’t need to know all of them to be a copywriter. That’s a fact too. And lots of people seem to think copywriters know very few…

Why Are Questions Such a Powerful Copywriting Tool?

Using questions in your copy can be really powerful but there’s more to it than that. The moment your brain sees a question it answers it – you can’t stop it – which is why questions are so effective. You simply can’t ignore them. Don’t believe me? Let’s give it a go. Can you remember what…

Clear Messaging: It’s Not About Your Vorsprung Durch Technik, You Know

In fact, it’s not about you at all. It’s about your clients. When people first come to you they’re often looking for help with something with that age-old marketing mantra in mind: WIIFM (What’s In It For Me?) That’s not to say you shouldn’t talk about what you do, what makes you different, your credentials…

Copywriting Conference 2019: Are You Coming?

Drum roll, please… I’m very excited to announce that I’m on the bill of the ProCopywriters’ Copywriting Conference 2019 in London in October alongside two of my absolute copywriting heroes. Joanna Wiebe and Richard Shotton are speaking at the conference and I’ll be running a workshop called Applying Behavioural Insights to Supercharge Your Copy. Copywriting Conference Speakers Jo has…

How to Use Statistics in Marketing

Statistics are often used in marketing to add authority and act as proof of a claim. We love the specificity of figures too: “A 250% increase in turnover” sounds so much better than “a big increase in turnover” doesn’t it? But the numbers don’t always add up. Anyone remember the Whiskas adverts in the 80s?…

Is it Time for a Digital Declutter?

We all love our mobiles, tablets and laptops. But could your relationship with tech be affecting any of your other relationships? If so, maybe it’s time for a digital declutter. I was born in the seventies. I grew up with Donkey Kong, the ZX Spectrum and Walkmans so I’m slightly (!) on the old side to…

How to Use Nudge Theory in Copywriting

Have you heard of nudge theory? It’s been around for decades but it came into sharp focus last year when Richard Thaler, a behavioural economist, won the Nobel Prize in economics for his work on it. The idea is really simple – you can get people to adapt their behaviour and make better decisions by…

We Haven’t Turned Into Goldfish Yet! Long-form Copy is Alive and Well

Don’t believe the naysayers! Long copy is not dead. It’s not over. And it’s not going anywhere just yet. Long copy is alive and well and here to stay both in print and online. As a digital copywriter, it’s the online stuff that interests me… The tsunami of blogs, online articles and social media has reached…

Why Are Short Words More Effective Than Long Ones?

Don’t we go on and on about it. Copywriters are always telling you to use shorts words instead of long ones. Here are just a few blogs where I talk about them being more effective: Copywriting 101: Keep it Simple, Stupid Make Your Copy More Convincing (With the Appliance of Science) It’s Not Big and It’s…

Copywriting 101: Keep It Simple, Stupid!

Mrs Bird, looking the very picture of delight, was superintending the arrangements of the table, ever and anon mingling admonitory remarks to a number of frolicsome juveniles, who were effervescing in all those modes of untold gambol and mischief that have astonished mothers ever since the flood. So wrote Harriet Beecher Stowe in ‘Uncle Tom’s…