Copywriting is the art and science of writing content to persuade readers and promote products, services or ideas. There are many different types of copywriting, and mastering various styles can give you a broad skill set and make you a versatile writer.
Here are 10 important types of copywriting to know!
Advertising copy aims to promote products and services through ads. It includes headlines, taglines, descriptions and calls to action that stand out and grab readers’ attention quickly.
The headline is the most important part of advertising copy – it determines if readers even continue reading the ad. Headlines use:
The body copy expands on the headline, giving readers more details to paint an irresistible picture that pushes them to take action:
Example body copy:
“Get the best night’s sleep ever with SleepZenTM tablets:
Direct response copy aims to get an immediate action from readers, like making a purchase, signing up for a newsletter, filling out a form, etc. Key elements include:
The headline states the primary benefit readers will gain. It answers the question: “What’s in it for me?”. It triggers emotions associated with that benefit.
Bullet points list the main features and sub-benefits that support the promised headline in a scannable format. They show readers exactly what they will get.
A direct and compelling call to action tells readers precisely what to do next. It uses powerful verbs to command action.
Offers like risk-free guarantees, bonus gifts and discounts give readers confidence to take action.
“Try our weight loss program risk-free for 60 days. If you’re not completely satisfied, get a full refund – no questions asked.”
Descriptive copy provides thorough descriptions of a product or service to build credibility, trust and paint a clear picture for readers. It revolves around features and benefits:
Features refer to the tangible specifications and components of a product or service. Descriptive copy systematically lists important features, especially ones that differentiate the offering:
Benefits refer to how the product or service solves customer problems and improves their lives. Descriptive copy connects features to benefits:
Comparing your product or service to competitors clarifies how it’s different and possibly better. Descriptive copy points out:
“Unlike other foundations that use traditional concrete, our vapor barrier concrete provides 3 times more moisture protection and a longer lifespan.”
Testimonials use social proof in the form of positive reviews and recommendations from customers to persuade readers. Well-crafted testimonials:
Showing how a product made a customer feel vividly conveys the benefits and value. Testimonials capture:
“I couldn’t be happier with my decision to buy this product! It has completely transformed my work and my life for the better.”
Customers should call out exactly what benefits they gained and problems that were solved. This shows readers how they too could benefit.
“This software saved me at least 10 hours a week by automatically completing repetitive tasks. The time I got back allowed me to focus on higher value work and spend more time with my family.”
Details like how long the customer used the product, how much money it saved, and specific examples make the testimonial more credible and compelling.
“I’ve been a loyal customer for 5 years now. The customer service I’ve received has been fantastic, resolving every issue right away. I honestly can’t imagine running my business without this product!”
When a testimonial comes from someone matching your ideal customer persona, it becomes even more relevant and convincing to potential buyers.
“As the owner of two small retail stores, scheduling employees and tracking inventory was a constant headache. Since implementing StoreMagic’s software two months ago, I now have complete visibility and control over all store operations from my phone.”
Email copywriting focuses on crafting compelling subject lines and email content that makes users take desired actions, like opening and clicking links. Key elements include:
A great subject line is the most important factor in getting an email opened. It should:
Most users skim emails instead of reading thoroughly. Copy should:
Addressing the reader by name in the opening and closing makes the email feel more personalized and trustworthy. Use the recipient’s full name when possible.
The email content should provide value to the reader and be useful and applicable to their current situation. Reviewing your email newsletter or promotional templates regularly ensures they stay timely and relevant.
Blog copy aims to attract readers to your blog posts and build an audience over time through useful, engaging and shareable content. Key elements include:
Blog post headlines act as the ” advertising” for your content. They should:
“5 Easy Ways to Increase Your Conversion Rate”
“What Netflix’s Rise and HBO’s Fall Say About The Future Of Streaming”
“10 Remarkably Simple Productivity Hacks That Will Change Your Life”
The lede paragraph immediately following the headline should hook readers into wanting to read more. It can:
The bulk of the post should impart useful knowledge, tips and strategies that readers will find valuable and want to share with others. Make use of:
Avoid overly formal or “professor-like” language. Instead, write as you would speak to a friend or colleague to create a more engaging and relatable tone.
At the end, prompt readers to take an action like sharing the post, signing up for your email list, visiting your website, etc.
White paper copy aims to establish authority and thought leadership within an industry. It covers topics in depth with outlined goals like providing solutions, educating readers and promoting products or services. It requires thorough research and a formal tone.
Case study copy tells compelling stories of how your product or service helped solve a client’s problem and created tangible impact. It demonstrates your expertise and ability to deliver results for a certain target audience. Case studies use a narrative structure anchored by a story of success and transformation.
All written content on a website can impact its search engine optimization, or SEO. From page titles and meta descriptions to the actual page content, menus and calls-to-action, web copy should be crafted with SEO in mind. Proper optimization of web copy involves researching relevant keywords and themes that search engines prioritize, then incorporating those terms naturally into the copy in a conversational and engaging tone for website visitors. At its core, effective web copy is SEO copy because the goal is not only to appeal to human readers but also search engine algorithms. To help you master SEO copywriting, I have created a free SEO copywriting checklist that covers the essential tips and strategies outlined in this article. You can use as a handy reference when optimizing your own website content for search engines and converting readers.
Sales copy focuses on closing sales by framing offerings in a way that aligns perfectly with what the reader really wants to achieve. Key elements include:
The main benefits readers truly care about are often emotional, not just logical or functional. Sales copy should:
Paint a vivid picture of how readers’ lives will be completely transformed if they use your product or service. Describe their “ultimate fantasy” fulfilled in specific, concrete terms.
“Imagine walking into the boardroom, confidently presenting your ideas… The CEO nodding in approval as your insights solve a critical problem… Your name listed among the company’s top performers at the annual meeting, as a grateful colleague congratulates you on your well-deserved promotion.”
Sales copy should uncover and directly address the frustrations, anxieties, struggles and pain points that potential customers actually experience – not just the surface problems they mention.
Testimonials, case studies, industry credentials, endorsement logos, guarantees and more provide social proof and establish credibility that reassures skeptical readers.
“As seen on XYZ Show | Endorsed by Experts | 100% Money-Back Guarantee”
And there you have the top 10 copywriting styles – enough to keep you writing headlines all night and sleeping through the mornings. Whether you’re prospecting new clients or just trying to get through your to-do list, these copywriting tips are sure to make an impact.
Whether you’re writing ad copy that screams “buy me now!”, crafting an irresistible sales page, or coming up with a killer blog post title, don’t just tell – show your readers how they’ll benefit from reading your words. But keep it short and sweet – nobody wants to read a long-winded word salad – and don’t be afraid to have fun with it. After all, words were meant for wooing, right?
So go forth, and never stop sharpening your pencil, polishing your phrasing, and perfecting your prose. With enough practice of the copywriting arts and sciences, you too could one day walk the path of the legendary wordsmiths and spin straw into gold…or at least turn it into an email checkbox people actually want to tick.
You get the idea – wish you the best of luck on your copywriting journey! Let me know if you have any other questions.