There is a really essential part of the website copywriting process, or of any kind of copywriting process, that people often miss or don’t even know exists. And that is brand messaging.
I have gotten a lot of questions lately, with people wondering, “How can I be unique enough so that I can grab my dream clients attention?” “How can I really convey the experience of working with me?” Some people have said, “How can I attract ideal clients that actually connect with my work, instead of price shopping?” “How do I come across as professional enough in my writing? Without being too stiff and generic?” Essentially, everyone wants to know how to write in a way that’s going to connect with their dream clients.
Now, the truth is, writing your copy doesn’t start with pulling up a Google doc and just writing. If this is where you have started in the past, that would explain the disconnect between you and your ideal clients. Actually writing is the third part of my process, the Dream Client Attraction System, that I use to write my copy, my clients’ copy and teach my students to use as well.
I’m going to hone in on step number two, brand messaging, today. This is usually the missing puzzle piece for website copy to ensure that you are unique and stand out.
Essentially, brand messaging refers to your value proposition. Which simply means, why should your ideal clients choose you? This is important to consider because your brand messaging helps set you apart from your competitors. It’s what’s going to make your ideal clients choose to work with you, rather than choosing to keep shopping around. Having a strong brand message will also set the tone for everything that you create, so it’s important to get your brand messaging right.
First of all, there’s your mission statement- the core of why your brand exists. This is all about the internal perception of your brand. Your mission statement should completely shape your team’s culture, even if you don’t have a team right now. It should encompass your why… Why you are doing what you’re doing and why you’re helping who you are helping? So this statement should be used in your hiring materials. But ultimately, it should be used as your guiding principles as to why your brand exists.
Your messaging should also include your core values. These are the heart and the soul of your brand. While you may not have thought of these as copywriting principles, they absolutely are. Once you figure out what your core values are, you can then incorporate them into your copywriting in really cool and creative ways to communicate exactly what your core values are. These are timeless principles that, again, should be used internally to guide your business as you grow, and as you make decisions and as you build a team. And everyone within your business should know and uphold your core values.
Another important aspect of your brand messaging is the transformation- the transformation that you help your clients achieve. This is a one sentence phrase that will clearly tell your clients how they can get from where they are struggling right now, to achieving their desires and getting to where they ultimately want to be. This sentence should be concise, but include the identity of who you help and how you help them. The transformation is also something you can use to very simply explain what you do and how you help people. Your elevator pitch. Your answer to the inevitable question, “So, what do you do?”. Because the transformation explains exactly how you help people.
There is also your brand voice. This is an essential part of your brand messaging because it will distinguish you from everyone else. The way you speak and act is super unique and so your brand voice will capture how you do things differently. For example, how many words would you usually use in an average sentence? Are they long winded? Or short, sharp and to the point? How do you punctuate your sentences? Do you use commas or hyphens? Exclamation points? And how frequently do you use them? These are the aspects of brand voice that I clarify with my clients, because I want to make sure that when it actually comes time to writing the words for their website, that I know how they write and how they sound. And it’s really important to understand these details for yourself as well.
If you are aware of the specific way you talk and write, when it comes time to writing your website copy you will be able to include your authentic voice. This way there’s also absolutely no chance for you to accidentally get a little too much inspiration from someone else’s website and end up sounding just like them on your website. So by ensuring your brand voice is authentic, you will distinguish yourself from your competitors. And you want to stand out as different!
Once you sit behind your keyboard and start writing though, don’t fret if you find it difficult to write with your authentic voice. Some people find it hard to be themselves when they write their website copy and default to generic words. My solution for this is to note how you write and talk in situations that you find it easier to be your authentic self. You could read through some of your Instagram captions. Often people do have quite authentic Instagram captions so by reading through them you can steer yourself in the right direction. You could also record yourself speaking talking with a friend or family member and take note of how you talk. What sort of language do you use? Do you use slang words? Are there certain buzzwords or phrases that you regularly use? Or, you could simply ask people who know you well to describe how you write or talk. I’ve definitely noticed words or phrases that my friends always use! Any one of these options will help you to pinpoint your brand voice and also help you to use the most authentic terminologies in your website copy.
Are there certain visuals that you refer to all of the time in your day to day life? One of my clients included a glass of red wine, indoor plants and Marie Kondo-ing website design in her visuals. These visuals were very unique to her (especially Marie Kondo-ing website designs!) and we were able to consistently use these throughout her website copy to make her stand out.
What are some visuals in your life that people might remember you by? It could be your office dog. It could be a particular type of coffee you always share on your Instagram stories. I’m sure some ideas have already popped up in your mind, so quickly jot them down to come back to later.
Another really important part of your brand messaging is your tone. To determine your tone, consider how you speak. Are you sassy? Are you casual? Do you get straight to the point? Or do you gently bring up topics?
Personally, I’m pretty direct and don’t really beat around the bush. So that would that would be be one of the ways that I would describe my tone. But you may take more time to gently get to the point. Or maybe you’re really encouraging, or maybe you give tough love.
What kind of tone do you have?
For your brand messaging, you should also create a words and phrases bank. This is something that my clients are usually very shocked that they hadn’t thought about themselves! Your words and phrases bank is simply a list of all the words and phrases you always use. These could be words you use to say hello, or words that you use to sign off from an email. Also consider how you would address you clients. Would you say, “Hey babe,” or “Hey lovely”? What other words and phrases do you use every single day?
Again, you could ask your friends and family if there are certain words or phrases that you use all the time. When it comes to my clients, I will look through their Instagram posts and watch their stories to thoroughly research and make a list of the words and phrases that are unique to them. You could also do this for yourself! As soon as you start paying attention to how your write and talk you will pick up on the words and phrases that you always use.
Then you can make a list of all of the unique words and phrases that you notice to actually include when you write your website copy. That way it will actually sound like you. And when your website copy sounds like you, it won’t be generic or cliche and won’t sound like any other expert out there. When you soudn like you, you will standout!
On the other hand, there is another side to your brand messaging that isn’t so much about you but is actually all about your dream client. This is the customer voice.
In my copywriting process, the customer voice is developed in the first step, during the research phase. When you research your ideal clients, this research should be very in-depth. Then you can use the data you collect in your brand messaging. Specifically, you will document the words that your ideal clients are using to describe their pain points, their desires, the transformation they want, big questions they and any common feelings between your ideal clients. Be prepared for an ‘aha’ moment once you complete this, you will understand your clients so much more.
Once you have an in-depth understanding of your ideal clients, you will be able to write your copy for them. You’ll have your readers thinking, “How did she get in my head?”. Because you put the time in to do a heck of a lot of research and actually get to know your ideal clients! This will also ensure that when they visit your website that they won’t just be skimming through and then heading to a competitor. They will instead notice that your copy really connects with them and will want to make an enquiry or take the next step with you.
The power of all of this information on your ideal clients is that it translates far beyond just your website copy. It also translates and bleeds freely into any sort of messaging in your marketing, whether that is email sequences, Instagram posts or any other content you create. This information is absolute gold.
A similar part of brand messaging is to also create a dream client brief. In this brief, you actually break down exactly who your dream client is. You should include what beliefs they have right now, such as any myths or mistakes they believe about the thing you teach and help them with. You could also include their current feelings and the problems they’re facing, as well as getting super detailed with who they are and even going as far as to give them a name.
Now this isn’t your usual dream client brief where you pull these answers out of thin air. Your brief should be based on the real data you have collected from some of your dream clients during the research phase of the copywriting process. And by using that data, you will be able to create an accurate and thorough dream client brief to then guide your copywriting.
You also want to include your brand story, and you may have an awesome story ready to use. But if you’re unsure what a brand story is, it is a compelling and relatable story of how your brand came about and how you came to do exactly what you do right now.
When writing the copy for your about page, you will be pulling pieces from your brand story. Doing this isn’t just to toot your own horn, but rather to communicate your journey to becoming an expert. Subtly positioning yourself as an expert through telling your brand story will have a powerful effect on your readers seeing you as the expert that you are.
Telling your brand story will all answer your readers questions about who you are. When people come across your website they will obviously want to learn about your offers, but first they will want to learn about you. They want answers to questions like, “Can I trust her?”, “Is she reliable?” and “Is she actually an expert?”. This is where your brand story will really help to establish your credibility.
Another really important part of your brand messaging is documenting your offers. You may think this is fairly straightforward, but you’d be amazed at how many people aren’t super clear on how to explain their offers. So before you actually write about your offers in your website copy, you want to make sure that you’re really clear on your offers. Then you will better be able to explain exactly what your offers are and what they include in your website copy.
You also want to include your processes and methods in your brand messaging. You want to let people know how exactly what steps are involved in working with you. If you haven’t got a set process yet, I highly recommend you outline one because it’s something that is unique to you and will further set you apart from your competitors.
Let’s break down what your process could look like. You could be a website designer, but you wouldn’t just straight up design your clients website, right? You would have a process that has to be followed before you get to the actual designing. First, your client might have to fill out an enquiry form before you then jump on a discovery call with them. After that you might send them a proposal, as well as their contract and invoice. Once your client has paid, you could then get them to fill out a questionnaire. Then it might be time to jump on another call to get things started before sending a number of drafts and edits back and forth with your client, before the final design is approved. Now I’m not saying this is exactly how you would have to do things if you are a website designer, but this is an example of what your process could be.
It is so important for you to have a process in place for your offers so that you don’t have to make it up every time you work with a new client. You want a repeatable system that you can use for every single client so that you can save yourself some valuable time. And you should give your process a name. An enticing name that is exciting to talk about. I helped one of my website designer clients come up with ‘the profitable website method’, which is so great because it speaks to her clients’ desires of having a profitable website. And mine is ‘the dream client attraction system’, which again speaks to my clients’ desires of attracting their dream clients with their website copy. So as you can see, it’s super important to come up with and document your process and give it a great name.
You will also need to have a process in place for before you work with your client. How will you prospective clients inquire and actually book in with you? Do they just fill out an inquiry form? Or do you also jump on a discovery call with them? Or do they need to secure their spot or read through a welcome packet? Booking a client is another process in itself that you should also get clear on and can even give ti a name as well. Your processes though, are what will set you apart and make you different.
There you have it, the 12 elements I highly recommend you include in your brand messaging. Once you’ve completed your brand messaging, you will have laid the foundations to help you write your website copy way more efficiently. Because you won’t be starting from scratch, you will already have really solid messaging to use. Your brand messaging will also act as a powerful tool that you can use to filter your writing through to keep your copy consistent. And this tool isn’t just for you, it will also be super beneficial for your current or future team to use as well to really understand how you and your brand talks and writes. And ultimately, your brand messaging will make it very clear as to why your dream clients should choose you as at the number on expert.
Thanks for reading this post! I hope you found it valuable. As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts. Comment down below and let me know what you found most helpful or surprising about creating your brand messaging to write personality-packed copy!
© 2022 CONNECTION COPY CO.