Copywriting lessons from a bra store!

friday, 1º july of 2011

Copywriting lessons i realized while relaxing in a bra store

by Tom Trush

Just before dinner last Friday, my wife suggested an activity that had far less appeal than the basketball game I planned on watching that evening.

She needed new soccer shoes and wanted to know if I was interested in going to the mall.

Now, don't get me wrong, I enjoy trips out with my wife and kids. But when given a choice between watching my beloved Sun Devils play in the second round of the Pac-10 tournament or going shopping, the comfort of my couch will win almost every time.

Last Friday was one of those rare exceptions.

Fortunately, our first stop at the sporting goods store was fast. My wife found her soccer shoes within minutes.

But as we walked away from the checkout lane, I noticed we headed in the opposite direction of the exit.

My wife had visions of another shopping success.

Like a marathon runner who sees the finish line in the distance, she picked up the pace as we rushed off to a new destination... the bra store.

Partially clothed mannequins greeted our arrival, and I immediately realized I was out of my element. So I took the stroller with my 11-month-old son, found a chair, and sat down to observe the action.

To my surprise, I noticed several copywriting lessons.

First, the sales lady gave my wife plenty of time to explain her situation.

A common theme in copywriting -- as originally introduced by Robert Collier -- is that you must enter the conversation that's already going on in your prospect's head. In this case, the sales lady allowed my wife to reveal that conversation.

Then, she presented a solution that was specific to my wife's problem.

Some companies are so busy touting their products or services as the greatest ever developed that they ignore prospects' problems. Therefore, the text turns into a self-serving "me" message.

Next, the sales lady established herself as an authority by demonstrating her knowledge of the subject. She explained (in enough detail that the words seemed foreign to me) how this new bra matched my wife's needs.

As Zig Ziglar says, "If people like you, they'll listen to you. But if they trust you, they'll do business with you." Presenting information in an educational format goes a long way in developing trust.

In this case, the sales lady built enough trust that my wife followed her to the back of the store for a customized fitting.

While they were gone, I began scanning the store. What I noticed was the usual attention-grabbing signs screaming phrases such as "50% Off," "Buy 2 Get 1 Free" and "Sale." They drew my attention to certain displays -- similar to what subheads can do for your writing.

When my wife returned from her fitting, she was ready to buy. That's when the sales lady revealed one last piece of information.

Since my wife had two bras, she was told she could get a third one at no charge.

This unexpected value is what you should strive to present in your writing. By over-delivering in your content, you'll make your marketing message memorable. What's more, you increase the chances of prospects sharing your information with other people.


© Trey Ryder

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