Gail our resident copywriter was telling us about a writing assignment that for most would be from Hell.Girl with Computer

She said, “So the client said the short brochure had worked pretty well but could I expand it. I did. It worked better so they asked to expand it again. And that one did better still. In all I expanded the copy four times.”

I asked, “What do you think made that happen?”

Chris, our web jockey jumped in, “It’s simple. You never really know which way of saying something is going to connect with the target. So the more ways you give them the better off you’re gong to be. At least that is what happens on line. Every test I’ve ever run shows that long copy beats short copy—if it is good long copy. Drivel doesn’t cut it. It has to be stuff that people will scroll on until they click through and buy.”

Gail nodded and said, “Right Chris, except for Twitter. And it doesn’t seem to matter whether you’re talking on line or off line. Sometimes repeating yourself is the best thing you can do.”

I asked, “The same exact words?” “Yes and no,” she said. I start as a friend puts it by sitting down at the computer and opening a vein. I just pour out everything I think, feel and believe about the item and then I look through all that for key words which I search and then make notes of especially the different viewpoints I find. I look for research data and surveys and hard facts to incorporate. And I listen to what the client tells me in the briefing about who they think the customer is and the benefits they deliver. I often find that they aren’t really sure who that ideal client is so I take it with a grain of salt and let the research lead me.”

“But how do you expand the copy?” I asked.

“I have a few tricks that help you make your content soar:

  • Turn some facts into charts or graphs and explain them in copy and captions
  • Find photos that support your argument and place them judiciously in the copy
  • List companies or organizations that have tried or used the product or service
  • Look at the benefits and turn them into a list.
  • Make ‘em bullets or number them.
  • Turn benefits or facts into challenging questions or quizzes
  • Look at the impact of the product or service on a timeline
  • Include a case history or success story
  • Extend your description of just who the product is for or the kind of company and/or problem.
  • Tell ‘em the need use or occasion it is for.
  • Include an executive summary or a front end synopsis.
  • Note the information in an intriguing way related to the page it occurs on so if hey want to skip around they still get the message.
  • Remember that you are going to have linear readers, scanners and that you have to appeal to both curiosity and the need to simplify at the same time.

And whatever you do, don’t forget to ask for the order. You can even do that in multiple ways.”


The lunch bunch is back here at a new location. Thanks in advance for telling your friends, colleagues and anyone you believe may profit from this blog.

Jerry Fletcher is a Trust Marketing Merchant. You know how solos and small businesses don’t ever seem to have enough time or money to build their business? Well, what he does is craft ways for “little guys” to be come known, liked and trusted. And you know who you would rather do business with…

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Jerry also speaks professionally on three continents. Learn more at