When visitors come to your website, what exactly are you feeding them? Have you ever stopped to think about it? Is your copy like a greasy burger and fries that you didnt put much thought into picking up, or more like a lovingly prepared home cooked Sunday supper with all of the trimmings?
Why the food comparison? Well, its actually quite logical. Your web copy provides your visitors with the information that they need to decide whether or not they want to purchase your goods or services. So in essence, your copy is food for their buying decision. The question is, do they leave your website properly satiated or will they find themselves hungry for something more substantial mere moments later?
The best way to ensure that your content provides readers with the information that they need to pick up that phone or submit your online form is to supply your cooks (aka your writers) with fresh, nutrient-dense ingredients. Truly nutritious content should have your fingerprints all over it. It should be redolent with your unique brand voice, toothsome with hearty information, and it should linger in their minds like a fine wine on the palate. If you want to convince them and convert them it is essential to offer something more than fast food copy.
What Is Fast Food Content
Fast food copy is filled with words that say little about what truly defines the brand in question. It is typically comprised of foraged information, which has been gathered from various sources throughout the internet. Of course, that is not to say that this sort of information does not have a place in the creation of copy. All good writing requires at least a soupon of external research. The trouble lies in web copy that is predominantly generic, due to a high percentage of external information.
When readers land on your site they are looking for deeper, more personalized information. They want to know what makes you different than your competitors. This is information that your writers cannot find by looking elsewhere online. It must come from the source.
Gathering Your Ingredients
Sometimes pages lack proper nutrition because companies simply dont know what types of information their writers need.
Above all else, remember that there is no such thing as too much source material. Professional copywriters are masters at sifting through marketing materials for nuggets of valuable information. So if you have brochures, pamphlets or any other materials that outline your products and services, then definitely send them to your writers. Also, think about your company and your closest competitor side by side, then write down all of the reason why someone should choose your brand instead of the other guy or gal. Write down anything that comes to mind, no matter how trivial you think it might be. You would be surprised at what a good writer can do with what you provide.
Another detail to consider is your secret ingredient. What is that one thing that drives your brand and makes it unique? Do you compete on price, quality, standout customer service, or something else? Ensure that your writers are made aware of this secret ingredient so that they can feature this messaging throughout your web copy.
Directing writers to an existing website is a very popular means of providing source information, particularly when a website is being remade. However, this information is oftentimes stale, much like leftovers forgotten in the back of the refrigerator. While there are tidbits of viable information to be found there, fresh ingredients should always be added to the dish. Here are a few examples of times when your existing website may not provide your writers with sufficient information:
When creating new product or service pages
When turning a piece of an existing page into its own page
When your existing site is not performing well
As it can happen at home, unappetizing or insufficient leftovers can send your writers foraging for alternatives, which often results in fast food web copy. That said, you neednt start entirely from scratch. Rather stir something new into the pot. You want your new pages and new messaging to provide real sustenance.
Remember, your website is the frontline of your sales force. You want it to know your products and services inside and out and that means ensuring that your writers are thoroughly educated. So, whether youre serving a palate whetting snack via landing page, or a full course meal on your website, ensure that your readers are being nourished, and not just fed.