MUST-READ for Copywriters and Marcom People: Fast and Easy Way to Make Your Copy Easier to Read

April 19, 2015

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It doesn’t matter if you’re a sales copywriter or a Marcom person, one of the most important things to do is to check your writing for readability.

You may have spent countless hours fine-tuning and editing your work but does it necessarily mean your readers can understand you?

So before you send your press release or sales brochure for print, make sure you understand this rule-of-thumb: the more readable your text is, the higher the chance you’ll get a response.

Before you go, “What?! Does that mean I have to proof-read my document again?” Here’s the GOOD NEWS: Checking for readability is as easy as a click of the button. It only takes a minute and involves very little work on your part.

Here’s what you should do:

Copy and paste your text into Microsoft Office Word 2010. If you’re not using Microsoft Word, you can use an online readability tool such as http://www.readability-score.com

In the menu bar at the top of the screen, click on Review.

Next, click on Spelling and Grammar:

Spelling and Grammar

In the window that pops up, click on Options:

PopupTick the little check-box that says Show Readability Statistics, then click on OK:

Show readability statsWhenever you run a spell-check on your document, you’ll get a summary of the readability statistics:

readability stats

Right up to this point, you’ll see several sets of figures. Don’t let them frustrate you. I hate numbers myself! But what we’re really interested in are the bottom 3 sets of scores

1. Passive Sentences is the percentage of your text using passive voice. The lower the percentage, the better.

Here’s why you should minimize the use of passive voice in your writing

2. Flesch Reading Ease is a highly accurate formula developed by world leading readability expert Dr. Rudolph Flesch. As the name suggests, the formula is based on the number of long words you use, and tells you how easy a text is to read. The higher the score, the better.

3. Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level relates to US Grade School reading ages. For example, a score of 8.0 means that an 8th grader can understand the document.

Now this doesn’t mean your reader has to be an 8th grader!

Bear in mind that your reader, who is very likely a busy person, has very little time (and patience!) in reading your copy. Asian readers, especially, hate to read something that is difficult to understand, or as they often say, “bombastic”.  It is very unlikely that he or she will give it full attention if they have to check the dictionary each time they encounter a difficult word (e.g. “tenacious”, “exacerbate”, “scintillating”, “collegial”).

You get the idea.

So always make your text easy for busy (and impatient) people to understand what you’re trying to say – without them having to check the dictionary.

If your Flesch Reading Ease score is low (e.g. 50 or below), it’s mostly due to sentence length. Proof-read your document again and pick out any long sentences. Could you reduce them? Or split them in two, even three? Check for any unnecessarily long words and use an online thesaurus such as http://www.wordreference.com for a simpler meaning of that word.

For example, could you say “co-operative” instead of “collegial”, or “lucky”, instead of “auspicious”?

Remember, the more easy your copy is to read, the higher the chance you’ll get a response!


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[Copywriting Video Tutorial] Top 30 Effective Email Subject Lines For Increasing Open Rates (Comes with a FREE email writing template)

April 17, 2015

After watching this video, go ahead and download my list of Top 30 subject lines that get your emails read – and opened everytime! Just click the link below to download your checklist. It’s completely free and there’s no opt-in required.

Download your Free email writing checklist here >>

Meanwhile, head on down to my Youtube Copywriting Channel for more copywriting video tutorials . Feel free to comment on my videos! Tell me what you enjoyed and suggest what else you’d like to learn. I’d love to hear from you!

Take me to your Youtube Channel now >>


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Useful Phrases To Make Your Business Emails Come Alive

April 4, 2015

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When you’re writing business emails or ANY type of marketing message, the only thing in your reader’s mind is “What’s In It For Me?” (WIIFM).

You’ll have to use words and build sentences that keep your readers involved, in line with the WIIFM principle. To help you achieve that, I’ve compiled a checklist of useful phrases you could use to make your business emails and letters come to life for your readers. All of a sudden, your reader becomes involved in reading your messages and responding to your ideas. He’s nodding. He’s stroking his chin. He’s thinking “hmm that makes sense!”

Your goal as a marketer/copywriter is to make your ideas come alive in your reader’s mind so vividly, he paints pictures of the results he can achieve by using your product or service.

Don’t you think that’s exciting?

Openers
Openers are used at the beginning of sentences and/or paragraphs

You see…
You see Peter, when you see our new [PRODUCT] in action, you’ll realise why it will have such significant impact on your Return on Investment.

You’ll see…
You’ll see exactly how this new technology will help you save…

You’ll discover…
You’ll discover an amazingly simple truth about…

You’ll find…
You’ll find it brilliantly simple to use…

You’ll recognise…
You’ll recognise just how valuable…

You’ll hear…
You’ll hear, perhaps for the first time, how…

You’ll be able to see at first hand…
You’ll be able to see at first hand exactly how using the new idea will…

You’ll realise…
You’ll realise how effective…

Translators
Translators translate key product features into benefits for the reader.

So…
It has a dual processor so speed is doubled and productivity increases…

What this means is...
What this means is a significant increase in effectiveness and productivity…

And, more importantly…
And, more importantly, the freedom to focus on what matters for your business…

So that you…
You’ll see just how solid the new furniture is so that you can considerably reduce maintenance costs…

So you can…
That’s $197 in savings, so you don’t have to worry if you’re racking up extra dollars every month…

How would YOU use the above phrases in your business emails and letters?

If you found this article useful and would like to learn even more ideas and techniques that get your business emails and letters read and acted upon, download your copy of “Quickstart Copywriter” now.


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How to Reply to a Complaint Letter The Tactful Way

April 11, 2013

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In my previous blog post, I shared with you crucial pointers on how you can write a letter of complaint that is more likely to have your problem solved.

On the other side of the fence, it is also just as important to write a tactful reply to restore customer confidence and goodwill.

If you are a customer service officer or manager, here are 2 handy templates you could use to thank your customers for writing in and to reassure them of your sincerity to rectify the situation.

Sample Response to a Complaint Letter 1- Download Now!

Sample Response to a Complaint Letter 2 – Download Now!


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How to Write a Letter of Complaint for Poor Service

April 10, 2013

How to write a letter of complaint for poor service

No matter how good our intentions and efforts, there will be occasions when it is necessary to make a complaint.

One of the most common complaints involve reporting about poor customer service. Naturally, when you have a genuine complaint you will feel upset and tend to use offensive language in your letter. But I strongly urge you to show restraint in your letter, otherwise it would create ill-feeling and cause the other party to be unwilling to help you.

You will gain nothing by being insulting. In fact, you are much more likely to get what you want by being courteous and respectful.

Here’s a sample of a letter of complaint written in a respectful tone and gives clear indication of the reason for dissatisfaction. It also provides all the details for the other party to investigate the matter.

Complaint Letter Template – Download Now!


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1-Minute Copywriting Tip: Give Your Email Open Rates a Dramatic Boost With These Top 10 Email Subject Lines

May 31, 2012

 Give Your Email Open Rates a Dramatic Boost With These Top 10 Email Subject Lines

1. <Recipient’s Name>, see you on Friday? (Replace Friday with the day that’s relevant to your email marketing campaign)

2. I haven’t got your reply yet, <Recipient’s Name>

3. I’m giving away <…>

4. Just curious, did you get my email?

5. I like you

6. Can you help me, please?

7. Do you suffer from <…>?

8. Fwd: Private invitation

9. I need to share with you something important

10. So easy even Grandma can do this…


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QuickStart Copywriting Checklist (Free PDF Download)

March 30, 2012

A Copywriting Checklist I Know You’ll Love (Yes, it’s Free!)

I value all my readers and I love to reward them with gifts in appreciation for their support towards my blog.

The gift I’m giving away is a Copywriting Checklist that I know you’ll appreciate (I spent several sleepless nights and invested plenty of tender loving care developing it).

As you know, there are so many important details to consider when writing a sales page or a marketing email. Sometimes, we tend to forget something as we rush to meet deadlines and do our best to get the job done properly at the same time.

Has that ever happened to you?

That’s why I love checklists. They keep me from forgetting to include all the important details in my sales copy and I’m sure you won’t
forget them too!

Just click the image below to download your copywriting checklist (yes, it’s free!). It’s in a PDF format that you can print and use right away. Stick it on your office wall if you’d like!

Download your free copywriting checklist here!

Meanwhile, here’s a quick note that I might be raising the price of my ebook as the weeks go by. Many of my readers have emailed me to ask how I am still able to keep my blog business viable since I’m offering my ebook at such a low price. They feel that I should make it available at a higher price since the value they’re getting out of my contents are worth so much more than the amount they invest.

I’m still considering their feedback, but as it stands now, it’s still available at just $9.97 :)

Go ahead and get your copy here.


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