8 Copywriting Mistakes (and How to Avoid Them)

8 Copywriting Mistakes (and How to Avoid Them)

Many marketers still make these copywriting mistakes. Do not be one of them!

Even though people have understood how to make a good copy, they still commit several copywriting mistakes. You may have looked at all copywriting examples, but do you still feel like struggling unnecessarily to finish your own? This will make your effort and money wasted. To avoid this tragedy happens to you, here are common copywriting mistakes you must remember.

Common copywriting mistakes

1. Copying

This is the biggest sin in the creative industry. When you look at the history of copywriting, a lot of marketers just copy and paste people’s content and nothing happened. Yet, if you do it now when search engines and consumers are getting smarter, you will never get a place. Instead of duplicating other people’s work, “attack” your competitors by revealing your identity.

The example of this copywriting strategy is Coca Cola vs. Pepsi. When Coca Cola uses the slogan “Open Happiness”, Pepsi replies, “Happiness is a choice”. Or, when Pepsi disguises as Coca Cola to wish people scary Halloween, Coca Cola answers that “Everybody wants to be a hero” meaning that Pepsi wants to be Coca Cola.

2. Using hyperbolic and unnecessary words

In copywriting, you have to make every word count. Thus, cross out the words like “very” or “really” and use the exact word instead. Write “massive” to express “very big” things and write “gorgeous” rather than “very beautiful”. These words will shorten the length of your copy and remember that “less is more”.

You also need to avoid using vague words such as “innovative” or “market-leading.” There is no standardized measurement of saying those words. Instead, include your real accomplishments to create a more appealing copy. For example, Qatar Airways claims as World’s Best Business Class on their home page. Yet, they back up the argument by providing a link to their Awards and Achievements page.

3. Applying too many adjectives

Copywriting in Twitter gets more clicks when you use fewer adjectives and more verbs also adverbs. Yet, integrating adjectives in restaurant menus can improve the sales up to 27 percent. In this case, you can conclude that not all adjectives work for your brand.

Do not overwrite adjectives to stay away from this copywriting mistake. Make your copy sound more credible and think only about adjectives that can evoke senses. Here is the example from Green & Black’s, “Crunchy toffee and smooth dark chocolate. Treacly and savory flavors”. The adjectives just speak the truth, but it is still appealing since you can imagine how the chocolate will taste.

4. Copy with no tone

Human Factors International explains that emotion is one of the three requirements for developing online interactions. The key to keep your readers engaged is to arouse their emotions about your brand from the tone you deliver. When you have no tone, you cannot stimulate feelings associated with the customer experience.

Some tones only work well for certain industries.

  • Innovative tone can be applied to software companies or app builders. You have to be concise and conversational. Do not forget to let customers speak by offering reviews or testimonials.
  • The elegant tone is suitable for spas, salons, or high-end items for women. Apply adjectives like “iconic” or “timeless classic”. 
  • The energetic tone matches with exercise programs, brands for teen, or fun-focused apps. You will encounter words like “build”, “power”, and “strong”.

5. No editing or testing

Copy testing is a crucial component in your advertisement’s success. It enables you to anticipate the audience’s response before you promote it online.

For instance, a copy testing app named Qualtrics builds easy-to-understand analyses and graphs about your ad. It gives you information on whether your copy is clear, relevant, and appealing based on several factors like context, creativity, and targeting. If you see the graphs low, you can edit it then try testing the copy again.

Yet, many businesses avoid testing and editing their copy because it may cost and take so much time. You still have to do it because you can gain more from this. DAC Group can increase 10 percent of traffic and CTR and 12 percent in conversions.

6. Including too much information

What is a web copy for you? You can have a long definition, but it must be brief and sharp because there are differences between web copy vs. web content. Web content is allowed to have in-depth content with more than 1,000 words. Yet, people nowadays will only skip your copy if it contains too many words.

How can you fix this copywriting mistake? Before you write the copy, think about the goal. What kind of response do you want to achieve from your audience? If you want them to fill a form, do not include information about how to purchase your product. Keep your readers focused and direct them to finish the action.

7. Making assumptions about market

Sometimes, marketers do this copywriting mistake because they focus on themselves.

Neil French said you need to decide who you are talking to because the market is the only thing that matters to your brand. Therefore, find a way to interest them by gathering facts about their demographics, problems, and behavior.

Eliminate the word “I” in your copy. Instead, change it into the audience-focused using the word “you”. HubSpot is an appropriate example of this solution. In the headline, they immediately address to readers. “Kickstart Your Sales Process.” And, they make it consistent with the sub-headers and body copy.

8. Being too formal and boring

Because your audience is human, write your copy like the way you talk to them face to face. Nobody likes talking with a robot or corporation that is too formal and boring.

Take a look at this wrong example: “Our market-leading services will alleviate the stress of product management.” Do not make your readers open a dictionary to find words in your copy. You had better transform that boring copy into something like: “Our services will take the pain out of your product management.” Does it sound more humane? Those are 8 copywriting mistakes you must keep away from. Remember those and you will be safe!