When it comes to writing copy for websites, follow this unconventional guide for your local business.
Think back to the first website or blog you threw up online. Most likely you hired someone or bought an online course that taught you how to set up WordPress yourself. In 2020, you have to be more strategic than this and it’s worth the extra time in writing copy for websites you have.
When I say websites, I’m talking about your main website, your free offer landing pages, your review sites, and social media sites.
Most copywriters aren’t StoryBrand Certified Guides. StoryBrand has a proven framework and has scientific research published on StoryBrand Narrative Marketing and its effect on organizations.
Why does this even matter?
When someone comes to your website, you want them to take action right? Of course!
But the problem is that 96% of website visitors don’t contact you!
If your local business gets 100 website visitors a month, that means that 96 people don’t contact you. This would explain why you only got 4 email inquiries or 4 phone calls. Or if you get 1000 unique website visitors, that’s only 40 people who took action to email, call you, or book an appointment.
Keep reading as I guide you through our process so that you get more website visitors to contact you the first time they come to your website. They come into your local business and every time that door opens you hear cha-ching as your business grows!
Here’s our 3 Step Process for Writing Copy For Websites:
STEP 1 – MESSAGING
During three 90-minute calls, we will work together to clarify your marketing and messaging using a 7-part, proven framework from the book Building A StoryBrand by Donald Miller.
Stop reading and listen to this podcast. Its an overview of the book and will transform how you think about writing copy.
See, I told you it was awesome!
By taking the time to listen to the podcast, read the book, go through the online courses, or attend a live event, you will be so much better at writing copy for websites.
The week prior to working with a new client. I don’t research their business or their competition. I believe that you as the marketing manager or business owner know all the right words. Come on, you’ve had your business for 5-10 years so you know your customers. So I’m here to ask you questions to pull out all the right answers to put on your BrandScript.
I pray for the clients I will be working with before and during our calls. Thanking the Holy Spirit for always being with us and asking Him to guide us during the calls.
During the three 90-minute calls we do with clients, we use this messaging tool called a BrandScript. It looks like the photo below. It sums up your message on 1-page for your overall brand, departments, or services you offer.
So if you have a dental practice like Pacific Beach Smile Studio in San Diego, these would be your first BrandScripts to create:
- Pacific Beach Smile Studio – Overall BrandScript
- Customer Service – Department BrandScript
- Hygienists – Department BrandScript
- Invisalign – Service BrandScript
- VIP Service – Service BrandScript
- Cosmetic Dentistry – Service BrandScript
Depending on when you are reading this blog, this client’s new StoryBrand’d website may not be finished yet. This process takes typically 90 days unless you are super motivated and we can get your new site up in 6 weeks.
What we think we are saying to our customers and what our customers actually hear are two different things. And customers make buying decisions not based on what we say but on what they hear. – Donald Miller, Building a StoryBrand
After the BrandScript is complete and you know you got it right. This means every part lines up, it has 1 clear message, and it’s easy to understand you can go on to step 2 writing copy for the wireframe.
STEP 2: Write Copy For The Wireframe
A wireframe is a rough design of the pages on your website, including all copy, placement of pictures/videos, and suggestions for visuals.
But before I make a wireframe using Draftium. I like to write all the words for all the website pages on a Google Doc. This makes it easy for Robert and I to review each other’s work. It also helps you to stay focused on the words instead of worrying about layout, typography, visual elements, or photography.
Q: When writing copy for websites, which page do you start on?
A: I start with the homepage.
I use our 5-page homepage wireframe template. You can download it HERE. This shows you where to put each of the 7 parts of your BrandScript on your homepage. Sure you don’t have to use all the 7 parts, but when you do you’ll communicate clearly with each person who comes to your website.
I take the 5-page homepage wireframe template and type out the sections on a Google Doc. I put both of these docs side-by-side on my screen so I don’t deviate from the BrandScript when I start writing.
Q: What if you have brain fog or hate everything you are writing?
A: Take a break! Move your body. Get outside. Drink some water. I know I said don’t research the competition but if you are really stuck you can take a quick peek to get you inspired to write. If you are really stuck. You may need to take a few days off from working and take a mini trip. Whenever I get back from traveling I’m refreshed and the words flow out.
Once I’ve written the all copy for the homepage as well as 4-10 other important pages like blog, services pages, contact us, about us, etc I get to copy all this over to Draftium and build out the wireframe.
We’ve been building websites for 5 years through our agency but using Draftium for the past year. It has help speed up the web development process because it’s simple for me to use and gets everything laid out the way I want it before sending it over to our team to create in WordPress.
STEP 3: Website Development
Build a website that makes your customers take action. When you download the website wireframe template I mentioned in step 2, you’ll notice that there is a Direct CTA (Call To Action) Button on each of the 5 parts of your homepage. Use the same Direct CTA over and over and over. On our site its “Schedule Call” and for many of our local businesses its “Book Appointment”.
On our homepage, you can see a longer list of the clients we’ve worked with. If you want to see more StoryBrand’d websites I give some ways to google and find them so you can compare how you are doing writing copy for websites. Watch this video from a couple of blogs ago.
Your website is likely the first impression a potential customer will receive about your company. It’s almost like a first date. The customer simply needs to know that you have something they want and you can be trusted to deliver whatever that is. – Donald Miller, Building a StoryBrand
Did I make our writing copy for websites guide simple for you to follow?
Most copywriters I’ve seen just jump into free writing or they google and model someone else’s website. But its too easy to copy and plagiarize if you do that. I believe that you can do it. If you’ve had conversations with your customers or read their surveys they give you the words to use. Your local business has a unique brand, team, and the way you do business. It sets you apart from the persona down the street in the same industry.
This uniqueness in solving your customer’s problems is what needs to shine bright and loud on every page of your website.
Stop talking about how great your company is and how great you are. Instead, invite your customers into the story! The first thing you need to do is define something they want, as it relates to your brand.
If you haven’t yet, make sure to listen to the overview podcast of Building A StoryBrand book.
If you got value from this, show me some love and tag us on your stories @rebelfishlocal