Like Results? Here’s an Efficient Method to Write Effective Copy For Your Small Business


Whether you’re a Mom & Pop shop, or just a Mom or Pop, you know marketing is crucial to a stable business, but hiring quality marketing experts and designers isn’t cheap.

You’re aware competition is growing, and grabbing the attention of your customer on social media and ranking on the first page of search engines is a constant task that is time-intensive. When you’re creating your own marketing content and graphics, I have a helpful outline written below that you can use to save yourself some precious minutes, while framing your narrative into a format your customer can resonate with quickly.

But first, really read and understand this run-on sentence below:

The anatomy of a strong marketing graphic will engage the viewer to read the headline, which is the purpose to read the pain point, the pain point is the purpose to read the solution, the purpose of the solution is to get the viewer to read the validation, and the purpose of the validation is to motivate the viewer to perform the call to action.

Each section of this copywriting anatomy builds upon the previous section, and transitions into the next, revealing new information to reach the core purpose of getting a reader to take action.

You can do this using the AIDA model.

AIDA is a historical model and acronym used in marketing and advertising that structures a visual into a simple storytelling rhythm. It’s decoded as:

Attract. Introduce. Desire. Action.

These four intentions take a viewer through your story, engaging them if they are the correct audience and then tells them what to do after they’re done reading.

The 2 A’s are the most important parts. These are the emotional parts that need to trigger the reader. The first A attracts, and the second A communicates an action. The I and the D, is needed to balance the emotional parts with facts. Let me explain each of the four sections further.

A: Attract your customer’s attention by revealing your big idea and showing you understand their pain.

You have only one chance to make a strong first impression. The top of the marketing visual has to hook the reader’s emotions to learn more. If you don’t do this, most likely the reader will ignore your message. The following 3 items need to be thought about when attracting your customer’s attention.

The Headline

The headline of any graphic is SUPER IMPORTANT. It sets the tone of the information and will be the theme driven throughout the infographic.

Your headline should:

  • Be bold and fluff-free
  • Address your reader directly, and relate to them
  • Speak less about yourself and your company, and more about them

Your headline should NOT:

  • Be boring
  • Bait or impress your reader into reading further about false, unattainable results
  • Speak down to the reader, as unintelligent or ignorant.

The Sub-headline

Following your bold, fluff-free headline, should be a detailed sub-headline to elaborate the topic before the viewer proceeds. Similar to non-fiction books, the headline grabs your attention, and the sub-headline clarifies what the book is about.

To provide examples below is 3 completely opposite end of the spectrum non-fiction books that even without seeing the cover art, you know exactly what these books will be about.

  • The Art of Asking: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Let People Help (by Amanda Palmer)
  • Great Again: How to Fix Our Crippled America (by Donald J. Trump)
  • Headscarves and Hymens: Why the Middle East Needs a Sexual Revolution (by Mona Eltahawy)

You see this right? Looking at the bold, fluff-free headline (book title) and then the detailed sub-headline of each book, there’s zero mystery of what the book will be covering.

Define a Pain Point

Communicate the problem you're solving into a context your reader will resonate with. How can you cater to your reader's emotions using data or a fact? How can you trigger them to take a moment and read? How can you frame this fact into a universal context?

For Example: Let’s pretend your business has a solution that will help 10 million people with a problem. 10 million people is a number you can’t imagine in your head unless you link a visual reference.

You can do this by using a location: 10 million people in America have Problem A, that’s like everyone in Michigan having problem A. This allows the reader to imagine a state the size of Michigan having its entire population suffering this problem.

You can also do this by linking the figure to another serious problem: 90 million people in America have Problem A, that’s double the 45 million people who live in poverty.

Or you can use a mixture of shock and levels of humor if appropriate with your reader: Globally, 300 million people have body odor due to poor hygiene, that’s like if every person on Twitter stopped showering.

I: Introducing your solution with quality features & benefits, will communicate your solution directly to your reader.

Be transparent and show the reader an overview of your solution. How does it work, and why should the reader give a damn?

  • Why will your solution work for your reader?
  • What are the features of your solution?
  • What are the benefits to your reader via your solution?
  • How can you clearly communicate how your solution works?

Remember: Features Tell, Benefits Sell.

Features explain the technical aspects, size, weight, color, and functions. Benefits build upon the features, explaining how a single feature will make the reader's life better.

For example, I assume you own a mobile phone. A feature of your phone is that it has a 4-inch responsive touch-screen. The benefit of that feature is, you can zoom in and out to adjust the text size of content to cater to your personal vision need.

Benefits sell the value of what the features actually mean to the customer.

Benefits are specific, tangible and real. Benefits make the reader's life better. Benefits have many levels, from surface to deep. I suggest picking 1 key benefit, and 2 secondary. That's it. Don't include benefits that are vague or abstract.

Key Benefits include more: Time, money, sales, savings, profits and referrals. Basically whatever speaks to the direct problem you're solving for your customer.

Secondary Benefits include: Easy to implement, great customer service, timely communication, reductions and savings in unexpected areas, performance, reliability, scalability, and flexibility.

D: Desire the product or service via validation, prove to your new customer other’s have taken your specific suggested action.

Validating your solution must prove your product or service has worked for others. You can use data results, customer testimonials and case studies to show this. The more detailed the better.

For example, “Solution A is great!” Doesn’t tell the reader much more than that some other person thinks your solution is great. But, “Solution A cost me half of my old service, and increased my widget sales by 14% in 60-days.” This type of testimonial tells a new customer what type of results your business has generated.

A: Action! Tell your customer specifically what the next step is, and encourage them to do so.

The reader understands the topic, problem, solution and benefit you provide. So now what? You’ve done all this hard work holding their attention, you don’t want them to drift away into the online abyss, right?

It’s time to tell the reader exactly what to do, and then give them a reward for doing so. What do you want your reader to do? Buy your service? Upgrade? Learn more? Subscribe? Contact You? This is dependent on your business.

What not to do: “Click here to find out more.” Yes, this does tell the reader what to do, but it smells a little like SPAM. Ask yourself, would you click on that link?

Instead use this structure: Question – Call to Action – Reward – Scarcity

For Example: Ready to learn more? Visit our website and subscribe to our monthly newsletter and we’ll take 15% off your purchase if you download by April 1st.

See how this structure flows together?

  • Question: Ready to learn more?
  • Call to Action: Visit our website and subscribe to our monthly newsletter
  • Reward: We’ll take 15% off your purchase
  • Scarcity: If you download by April 1st.

This call to action, tells the reader exactly where to go, what to do, and why they should consider doing this. At this point you’ve introduced the reader to your big idea, shown you understand their pain point, illustrated your solution and backed up your business with results. If all of these are resonating with your reader, why would they not want to learn more and save 15%?

Chris Brock