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More Insider Secrets to Great Copywriting -- Judging Your Target Market
By Lorrie Morgan-Ferrero
Copywriting is a team sport. There's you (the writer) and the reader. The reader gets to decide when the game's over. As soon as the reader is gone, they're not reading your copy anymore. So you're anticipating what's going to keep them interested and intrigued with your copy ahead of time. Here's how it's done.
Pick a primary target market. (Yes you can have more than one, but the more specific you make your target market, the easier it will be to sell to them. For our purposes, you need to pick one specific target market.) Let's define just what I mean and how I create my audience as a real person in my Field Guide.
Target + Market = Tarket - a singular way to look at writing to one person rather than a mob. Get this one concept down and your copy will bond effortlessly with the reader. Because it's just you and her in the room. (Oops - I let out another of my secrets. We're limited in the English language when it comes to identifying rather than "he" I suggest if you use the pronoun "she" instead. Your copy will go through a subtle filter that you may find is more palatable to more of your audience than you imagined. Of course, it depends on who your target market is.)
We have a lot to cover here, so don't miss a single word. You must know the education level of your target audience to write effectively. In general, even educated people don't mind reading simple words. Simple means clear. But there's a fine line between talking down to your market. Don't go there. For the most part, Americans read between the 11th and 12th grade levels. Did you know that best-selling books are written for the 8th to 10th grade level? "Reader's Digest" aims for the 10th grade level, while "Time" and "The Wall Street Journal" reach for the 11th. So Keep It Simple, Sweetheart!
Prepare a Fact Sheet for your target market. Write down all the facts and demographic information you know about them. Here are a few questions to get you started;
• Family status
• Socioeconomic status
• Geographic location
• Media they consume (including Web sites, blogs, magazines, television shows)
Now, find a picture of your newly born "tar-ket". Make him or her as real as possible. In fact, he or she can BE real. If you would like to focus on a client or friend that fits the bill, that's fine too. Just do the brain work.
BONUS - Have a few more minutes on the clock? Do a search in Google on your target market and see what pops up. Check out a few Web sites while you're at it.
Now reset the timer and do YOUR product. My goal is to get your copy up to speed FAST so you can start marketing yourself.
I like to use the analogy of one of those big circular targets you see used in archery. You want to get into the bull's eye of who your target market is.
I want to get right in that bright red circle at the center. But those concentric circles around it are also valuable. They do have different value points. But the funny thing is that the more specific you are the more you are in the bull's eye. The more the concentric circles are pulling you towards the center, you are still attracting the same people. It's amazing but true that people don't need to worry about appealing to everybody.
Putting yourself in the shoes of your client is the best thing you can ever do. When you start thinking and anticipating what's going on in their minds, that's when your copy's going to start connecting. And that's what we do as copywriters.
Author Resource -> Copywriting guru Lorrie Morgan-Ferrero has been helping entrepreneurs and copywriters get their marketing messages razor sharp since 1999. Get free access to 5 tips to turn your "blah" sales message into red-hot copy that ROCKS... at http://www.RedHotCopy.com