A Simple, Slightly Creepy Way to Write Better Copy

A few weeks ago, I was sitting in a small, windowless office with my friend Tim.

Tim isn’t just a friend. He’s a highly-skilled copywriter who’s generated over $1 million for his clients…

And I was eavesdropping on his conversation.

He’s working with a content writer to develop a course for a New York Times bestselling author. And what he said was just an off-hand comment, thrown in at the end of the conversation, but it stuck with me.

“One thing you can do is find a picture of your customer avatar and have it up on the screen while you write.”

I don’t think Tim was the first person to come up with this idea, but it resonated with me.

So, a few weeks later, as I was writing an onboarding email sequence for a client, I got on LinkedIn. I went to my client’s profile and found someone who had written a Recommendation for the service he offered. I pulled up his profile picture and left it on my screen while I wrote the sequence.

And I can tell you this…

When you’re looking at a picture of another person and writing directly to them, the writing gets easier.

One of the challenges of copywriting is that you’re forced to juggle so many different things.

You have to account for…

Your knowledge of the product

  • Features

  • Benefits

  • Reviews

  • Facts & Figures

Your knowledge of the market

  • Competing products/services

  • Solutions the reader has tried before

  • Your product/service’s positioning

Your knowledge of the customer

  • Pain points

  • Desires

  • Life experiences

  • Level of awareness/sophistication

  • Objections

  • And a whole lot more

When you’re trying to weave all this information into your copy, it can be hard to remember you’re writing to a real, actual human being.

In an effort to cover all your bases, you can end up writing copy that sounds robotic instead of human.

Or worse, you come off as disingenuous, sleazy, or generally insensitive to the person on the other side of the screen.

This little trick bypasses that and becomes a constant reminder of the most important part of copywriting:

There’s a real human being with real problems on the other side of the screen.

It’s a lot easier to connect when you’re looking someone in the eyes.

So, if you’re having a hard time getting information from your brain onto the page, head over to Facebook or LinkedIn, find your ideal customer, pull up their picture, and write directly to them.

Yeah, it’s a little creepy. No doubt.

But the result is copy written for an actual human being. Copy that is genuine. And, ideally, copy that actually looks out for the best interests of that person on the other side of the screen.

Robert Lucas