Writing to Sell: Product Descriptions

Selling is a big part of every copywriter’s job. We are virtual salespeople, barking vendors marketing products to an unseen audience. Product descriptions aren’t new, but they’re more prevalent than ever. Catalogs from Sears Roebuck and a host of boutique mail order brands have been flooding into mailboxes forever, or at least as long as most can remember. Now, product descriptions are even more important. Great swaths of the Internet are dedicated to selling stuff–we’re talking EVERYTHING! Land’s End doesn’t just have a mail order catalog packed with clever, concise descriptions. They have an entire website and then some.

Drawing people in and getting people to click is something that we never had to deal with in paper catalogs where readers turn the page or chuck the whole thing in the trash. The web has changed product descriptions and made effective writing just as important as it is in a tightly packed catalog. Teasers are one invention of the internet age. Almost 10 years ago, we were writing tantalizing descriptions for lawsuits. Today, we’re doing the same thing for plastic surgeons, entertainment concierges, antiquities, promotional apparel, wine cabinets and whatever. The demand for product descriptions is so strong that, at times, we have written them continuously for a whole month. Whether a description is 50 words, 150 words or longer, it takes a formula to successfully sell items, to outline the special features and to make each one fun to read without seeming repetitive and redundant.

Product-description-mantra

If product descriptions make your head ache, you’re not alone. Fortunately, we’ve made it our business to put the hammer down and conquer the format. Sadly, the only way to do that is by writing so many a year that you totally lose count. So if products that need describing are bringing you down, leave it to a pro. You can have your text delivered in an Excel-friendly format that is ready to be uploaded. Product numbers, teasers and full descriptions can all be uploaded together. How easy is that?

Five Reasons Every Company Needs a Blog

blog 101 iconNow that most businesses have blogs, everyone is focused on increasing the value of their posts. Here are five reasons why every company needs to have an exceptional blog. These topics apply to business-to-business and business-to-consumer entities.

1. The Competition

Positive differentiators are like bread and butter in commerce. Companies are always looking for ways to gain an edge over the competition. Your blog can do this for you. Don’t give your competitors a chance to become the definitive industry blog. If stay competitive, you’ve got to be blogging too.

2. The Credibility

Credibility is a huge factor. By establishing credibility on your blog, you can foster trust. This is the key to generating sales and attracting new customers. People buy things from companies or other people that they trust. Many thought leaders are born on blogs. Use your blog like a soapbox to reach consumers and to get your ideas and thoughts heard by the world.

3. Search Engines

The things businesses do to please search engines are incredible. Most of us spend a lot of time and money on SEO campaigns and creating keyword-rich content. Well, blogs are a pretty awesome way to attract real consumers AND search engines at the same time. Search engines love fresh web content, and your blog is a great way to get their attention by adding new information even if your home page is fairly static.

4. The Customers

Fifty-seven percent of business owners who were surveyed by HubSpot said that they have acquired at least one customer from their blog. Customers are the primary target when you blog. Your readers are your customers. By providing tips, tutorials and valuable information, you’ll attract new customers and generate new leads. A ceramic tile company, for example, might post a great project tutorial or buying guide that helps consumers make the right purchase.

5. The Cost

Although businesses are spending more on blogs, they are still the most cost effective marketing channel. Your blog is one of your most powerful inbound marketing tools. Due to the low cost, blogs are very valuable for small businesses. Not just valuable but accessible. The best marketing strategies are accessible for companies creating them and consumers viewing them. Remember: The more you blog, the more customers you’ll bring in. While daily bloggers have the highest success rate, most people can’t blog that much. Weekly and monthly schedules are the most common, and that’s a great pace to star with.

The opportunity to blog is something that you must take advantage of. You can release news, promote special offers and educate your customers, so they can make informed purchases. These blog posts can also be cross promoted through social media sites and your own readers. If you think about the potential, a company blog really is exciting. How is your blog performing?