Do you want to know how to create a radio ad? Or do you need a voice over for a TV campaign? If you or your business is planning on using a voice-over in an ad, you will first need a script. After all, any voice over artist’s performance can only be as good as the script they are asked to perform. Writing the best advertising copy is a surefire way to make sure your video will pop!
So, what is advertising copy after all? Definitions of the term usually agree that “an advertising copy is a term used to describe the main text used in the advertisement. The text could be a dialogue, a catchy punch line, or a company’s dictum. That is a print, radio, or TV advertising message. It aims at developing and retaining the interest of the target customer. It also needs to prompt him to purchase the product within a couple of seconds.”
So what kind of purpose does ad copy serve, after all? According to The Balance Small Business, the goal of ad copy is to increase conversion rates and profits. There are three ways to make a business more profitable. You can increase the traffic to the sales page, increase the value of the product or service, or you can increase the percentage of web traffic that converts to customers. Increasing the conversion rate is the most effective way to increase the profitability of a business.”
Whether you plan to hire a professional copywriter in order to write the script for your ad or you plan to do it yourself, it’s a good idea to know the basics of how ad copy works and how to write great ad copy so you can be confident you are producing an effective ad.
Essential elements of a good advertising copy
What kind of principles should any ad copy follow? Each and every ad copy should involve a number of principles that are integrated into the complete message. This process involves combining “search engine optimization with marketing strategies and is used in all kinds of advertisements, not only pay per click and contextual ads (Studious Guy, above).”
The essential elements of a good copy are as follows:
- Credibility – The ad that you want to present has to be reliable. The copy should always include an element of reliability to be able to convince potential customers to try the product. “The credibility of an advertisement is the extent of honesty in the ad message.” Always avoid misleading and misinterpreting ads.
- Attention – A good ad copy should always include keywords. Also, it needs to have punch lines or phrases that seize the attention of potential consumers.
- Assurance of benefit– “An advertisement copy must contain some promise of the benefits that the product offers if the consumer purchases and uses the product.”
- Brevity and clarity – Ad copy should always be brief and clear, to the point. Of course, the important elements should be there. But, a clear copy means that is easy and quick for the readers to take in what you are trying to present.
- Apt and conforming – “The copy must be apt and must match the needs of the prospects. Every ad copy must meet the conforming standards and rules acceptable to the advertising media and the laws of the land.”
Good ad copywriting tactics
These days, a hefty amount of the business is conducted online. There, the essential word for a good business is – traffic. Again, to have more traffic you need more quality advertising. As WordStream(WS) notes, “when you’re paying Google and Facebook tens of dollars for a single click, it’s crucial that you write ad copy that can push and persuade people.”
So what should be the tactics of writing a good ad copy? WS suggest the following:
- Show potential customers how you’ll solve their problems. The key to it all, as its name says, lies in keywords. “When everyone (your competition included) is using the same keywords, you don’t really attract much attention. To stand out, your ad headline needs to mirror the visitor’s end goal. People click on an ad because it promises to help solve their problem, not because they think the ad checks all the right keyword boxes.”
- Include emotional triggers – Most of the time, people visiting a certain site are casual browsers. They are possibly trying “to get information or discover what solutions and services are available for a potential problem. For these kinds of visitors, you have to spur them into action. One way to do this is through emotional triggers.”
- Focus on benefits, not features – How does a certain product make a benefit for a potential customer? That is the question that needs to be answered by the content of the ad copy.
- Play on the fear of missing out – “Loss aversion is a real psychological force and using it in your ads is an easy way to drive conversions.” Including a countdown timer for a product, can often do the trick.
How to write a good advertising copy
Here are the key six elements you need to be aware of when writing a good ad copy. These principles are the same, whether you write it yourself, or you want to stay in constant touch with the professional:
- Know your purpose
Many books have been written about the art of writing advertising copy or how to create a radio ad, and every one of them emphasizes the same thing – for an ad to be effective, you need to be completely clear about what you want to achieve.
In The Adweek Copywriting Handbook, legendary adman Joseph Sugarman described the goal of writing effective advertising copy as being: “To cause a person to exchange his or her hard-earned money for a product or service”. Therefore, it’s a safe bet that your ad needs to inspire some kind of action by the consumer. Make sure you know what that is from the very beginning.
- Know your customer
If you’re clear about who your target market is, then you can get a good idea of who your script should be aimed at. In the classic copywriting manual ‘Scientific Advertising’ Claude Hopkins advises: “Don’t think of people in the mass. That gives you a blurred view. Think of a typical individual, man or woman, who is likely to want what you sell”.
- Create desire
To inspire action, you need to create desire. You do this by making a powerful offer that appeals to both the logical and emotional sides of the customer. It also helps to highlight the key benefits of the product or service you’re promoting, if time allows.
Engaging story, and the format
- Tell an engaging story
You know your purpose, you have an individual customer in mind, and you have a strong offer to create a desire for your product or service. Now you just need to combine all of this into an attention-grabbing idea or story that captures the listener or viewers’ imagination.
Whether you are writing the copy for a voice-over for TV or radio, consumers have multiple choices about what to give their attention to, and they will be quick to ‘switch channels’ if you can’t engage them immediately. Think carefully about the words you choose and make sure they tell a captivating story.
- Consider the format
Your script will be different depending on the format of your ad. You will need to know the length of the ad – many radio or TV adverts are only 10, 15, or 30 seconds long.
If it’s audio-only, then you will need to keep things extremely simple. You’ll also need to decide if your voice over will be accompanied by any sound effects or music, or if you will need one or multiple voice-over artists. If it’s a video advert, then your script could be considerably more complex as you will also be able to tell the story visually.
A call to action – the key to advertising copy
- Include a Call to Action
We’re back to our purpose again. If your ad is to achieve what you want, you’ll need to inspire some kind of action in the consumer. You’ve captured their attention long enough to kindle their desire, but you still need to ask them to take some kind of specific action.
Again, simplicity is the best approach here. Keep in mind the behavior of the viewer or listener. Most people listen to the radio whilst doing something else, such as driving, so don’t over-complicate things. Getting them to visit your website might be the best you can hope for in that case. If it’s an online ad, then simply clicking on a link or entering their email address in a capture form might be the best thing to ask for.
The Balance (above) defines a call to action as a statement designed to get an immediate response from the person reading or hearing it. If you find that your leads and prospects aren’t taking the next step in your sales process—whether that’s buying or simply requesting more information—the problem could be a faulty or non-existent call to action. Leaving calls to action out of your marketing materials can mean losing prospects and money. “Don’t assume people know what to do when they read your ad or marketing materials. You’ll get greater results by being clear about what the prospect needs to do next.”
Still, usually, the best results can be achieved by at least consulting or assigning the advertising copy job to professional services. To add the finishing touch to your marketing video, check out Bunny Studio’s vast selection of professional voice over artists from around the world. Or, you can also consult our writing staff about the advertising copy itself.