An Introduction to Direct Response Copywriting

If you’ve ever written a letter, email or ad and wondered what you need to do to make your copy drive a desired action from the reader, then this blog post is for you.

Welcome to direct response copywriting, perhaps one of the most important skills in the copywriter’s toolkit.

It’s all about generating a clear and concise call to action.

This could be anything from getting the reader to request more information, buy a product, sign up for a newsletter or donate to a charitable event.

Whatever it may be, make sure they know exactly why they need to take this desired action and how to take the next step.

What is Direct Response Copywriting

Direct response copywriting is focused on getting people to take some sort of action – through your response letter, email or ad. This means that the goal is to get people to act, be it by requesting more information, buying a product, signing up for a newsletter or donating to a charitable event-whatever they need to do. The trick is not to say anything vague – make sure they know why they need to take this desired action and don’t hesitate to tell them how in no uncertain terms!

How does Direct Response Copywriting work

The goal with any direct response copywriting effort is to get people to take some sort of action, so you need to persuade them that the action you are wanting them to take is the right thing to do. This means using persuasive techniques such as showing them how your product can benefit them, giving them a reason to act now, or making it easy for them to take the desired action.

You should also make them feel that it’s the only logical choice and that taking this action will solve their problem. The best way to do this is by using words like “you”, so they know exactly what you want them to do.

One thing to think about when formulating direct response copy is understanding what stage of the buyer’s journey your audience is on.

Are they still looking to better understand how your solutions can solve their problems? Or are they looking with high intent of purchasing or engaging someone’s services?

Depending on the answer to that question, the action you seek them to take might change and the things you need to say to encourage that action may be different.

For example, someone who is earlier in the buying journey and still learning about the solutions out there might be more inclined to download a free resource or sign up for a mailing list.

These people are looking for reassurance that you are a trusted source of the knowledge they seek. They want to be confident that you are an authority in your field. They might even want to know the range of different options that are out there for them.

Someone who is looking with high purchase intent will be more inclined to buy the product they are after or engage the services they seek.

These people know the outcome they are seeking and they are looking to spend their money on the product or services that they trust will deliver the best result.

Regardless, your job when writing direct response copy is to ensure that the reader is confident you can solve their problem and take the desired action with you as soon as possible.

Why Direct Response Copywriting works

In marketing, copywriting is all about persuasion and direct response copywriting takes this to the extreme.

For years direct response copywriting has been one of the go-to skills in a copywriter’s toolkit because – when applied effectively and in the right places – it elicits action from the reader.

Direct response copywriting works because it can:

  1. Creates a sense of urgency around the desired action
  2. Makes a soundproof, logical case as for why the desired action should be taken
  3. Demonstrates the benefits of your product or service in a way that the reader can’t help but take the desired action

Direct response copywriting – when conceived and applied correctly – works because it’s focused on getting people to take some sort of action. When someone reads your letter, email or ad, they know exactly what they need to do in order to get the results they want. This makes it easy for them to take the desired action.

How do you write a call to action in your ad, email or letter

An effective call to action is all about having crystal clear clarity on the action you want your audience to take and then telling them how to take it.

You can also use phrases like “click here to learn more” or “call us today to schedule a consultation”. The goal is to make it as easy as possible for them to take the desired action, so they can get the results they want.

The quicker and easier the action is to perform, the better. Ideally, they should be able to take the action without having to leave the page.

Remember, the key to a great call to action is to ensure the action that you want the audience to take will solve their problem.

If the problem your reader is trying to solve is that they want a better understanding of a certain topic, then a call-to-action to download a free e-book or to sign up for a regular email with relevant content will be a more-effective call to action than asking them to purchase a product that will not actually help them in their pursuit of more knowledge.

Likewise, if you are writing direct response copy for a beauty product that will help your audience instantly solve a problem – such as acne, for example – then a call to action to buy your product today might be more effective.

What are some common mistakes that people make when writing the content of their letters, emails and ads?

When writing the content of letters, emails and ads, there are a few common mistakes that people often make. One of the most common mistakes is not making it clear what they want the reader to do. Another mistake is not understanding what stage of the buyer’s journey their audience is on.

If someone is still in the early stages of the buying journey, they might not be ready to buy the product yet. In this case, a call to action that asks them to purchase the product might not be very effective.

Another common mistake is using too many technical terms or jargon that the average person might not understand. This can turn people off and make them less likely to take any desired action.

It’s also important to be clear and concise when writing your content so that people can understand what you’re trying to say without having to read it multiple times.

Don’t overcomplicate it. Give them what they need to know, tell them what to do next and make sure they can easily do it.

How Direct Response Copywriting can help your business

Direct response copywriting is all about generating a call to action.

Whether you’re trying to get people to sign up for your newsletter, buy your product or donate money, the goal of direct response copywriting is always the same: getting them to take the desired action!

If your marketing efforts are suffering from:

  1. Low open rates
  2. High bounce rates
  3. Low click-through-rates
  4. Low conversions

Then direct response copywriting might be something you need to consider.

Stop letting those precious leads slip through the net and chat to Content Hype about how Direct Response Copywriting can get your sales back on track today.