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What Are The Fundamentals Of Effective Copywriting?

Copywriting is an essential skill that all business owners and marketers should take the time to learn and apply.

This month our Platypus Lunch'N'Learn session saw Nicole Ashby of High-Profit Media, a local Ballarat business, share some of her copywriting insights and how you can begin to use effective copywriting in your business.

One of the first things with copywriting is you need to understand is a bit about the brain.

The higher brain is always at the mercy of the original brain (the mammalian brain). The original brain is only interested in what’s of benefit to it and it can’t rationalise, but it does make yes and no decisions.

It’s also the most important part of the brain that you must first engage when writing copy.

Your job is to offer up something of interest, curiosity or intrigue to the original brain using a strong hook. In the case of copywriting, a strong hook is a headline. A headline with a promise, such as “Discover How To….” or “You Too Can Now Experience….”, or “Discover The Five Steps To…”

Copywriting is a style of writing that influences and persuades.

It uses words and phrases and the psychology behind those words and phrases, to impact decision making. In other words, you can write copy to help influence potential new clients to make the decision to work with you.

The primary purpose of copywriting is to:

  1. Move a person to take action on a solution they’ve been looking for or

  2. Something that can satisfy their desires.

Effective copy is written from the perspective of the me-centric internal map of the person/people you want to influence. It focusses on desire satisfaction.

The more you satisfy the emotional and psychological desires of customers, the more your income grows.

The solution people are looking for is the “exchange sweet spot”!

Eugene Schwartz, one of the world’s most highly regarded copywriters, noted that

“Copywriting is the literature of desire.”

Every word and line of your copy is your opportunity to satisfy desire.

Desire drives economic activity with up to 80% of a developed economy being driven by consumer spending and only 20% by government spending.

People will spend money and if they don’t spend their money with you, they’ll spend it with someone else!

So, you must focus on desire when you write copy.

You sharpen it, intensify it and give it direction towards a wanted outcome. The outcome is always a tangible solution that is highly beneficial to your ideal customer.

Good copy doesn’t create desire…it already exists in people.

Revenue increase is gained when your copy gives shape and direction to desire by focusing on its hopes, dreams, wants, and needs onto solutions.

Good copy doesn’t communicate information about products and services, it communicates emotional stories that invite consumers into a larger story…about what pleasure and happiness mean to them.

It shows them how to gain the pleasure and happiness they are seeking and how to satisfy desires or solve problems through the solutions you offer.

Here’s a little task to get you thinking and to get you started with your copy.

  1. Describe your ideal customer’s three deepest desires in relation to what you sell?

  2. What three deep frustrations do they feel as a result of not being able to achieve their desires?

  3. What three core emotions would they feel as a result of you helping them achieve their three deepest desires?

The central theme of good copy is the promise of satisfaction. You need to show people every angle of how your product or service satisfies their desire.

Think of copywriting as influencing behaviour towards an experience your ideal client is looking for. It shows them how to get this experience as effortlessly as possible; whether it’s registering for a webinar, buying a new dress or saying yes to a proposal.

When you combine promise with an ability to influence, you move your future customers towards the experiences and solutions they want for themselves. Good copy points to improvement.

It’s important to note that good copy doesn’t “con” people into buying. It simply connects desires and solutions. Your revenue increases as a result of making these connections.

Let’s break down some other important aspects:

As mentioned, a strong headline with a hook that offers a promise is essential. It’s the most important part of your copy and often the hardest to write. (Pro Tip…write down a few headlines and come back to it after you’ve written the rest of the copy)

Every line of your copy needs to be accepted in order and every line is like a link in a chain. If you break a link, you lose the engagement of the reader and they’ll move onto something else. If you’re copy is on your Facebook page or Instagram account, your ideal customer will continue to scroll if you don’t hook them in and keep them there.

You must have a clear understanding of who your ideal customer is…their needs, wants, desires, frustrations, dreams, problems and also where the grass is greener for them.

The more clarity you have on who your ideal customer is, the more emotionally charged you can make your copy which will lead to greater connection and increased revenue.

Learning how to be an effective copywriter takes time, and lots of it but these fundamentals will get you started.

For further information regarding copywriting, email

Platypus Lunch'n'Learn are held every month from February to November and offer a variety of business topics to help businesses. We now record all sessions and you can catch up with them at the bottom of the Platypus Lunch'n'Learn page, our next session is on 22nd April @ 12.30pm (via zoom) - Creating Consistent Content with Ease

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