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How to address that classic content challenge familiar to every travel brand...
Writing fresh, interesting copy about the same old places.
Writing requires discipline, focus, talent, sacrifice and a thick skin, so I have no idea how I’ve managed to survive this long without my editor noticing my fundamental lack of these skills.
What I do have though is an awesome arsenal of tools and web applications that help paper over any cracks in my expertise.
From idea generation, to writing without distraction, to creating jargon-free copy, these 17 tools should also help you improve your own craft and hopefully stop you from banging your head against the keyboard for too long.
Last month in my round-up of how seven ecommerce brands use highly persuasive copywriting I covered one of my all time favourite examples.
Moosejaw is a US-based retailer and ecommerce store specialising in outdoor recreation apparel and equipment.
What separates Moosejaw from its competitors is its consistently hilarious and quirky tone of voice that runs through all of its website copy, advertising and customer service channels.
I talked to Moosejaw’s CEO Eoin Comerford and customer service director Chad Caudhill about the importance of brand tone of voice, how it effects the company culture, its perception in the wider ecommerce world and the benefits of being an engaging, off-the-wall brand with bucket load of acerbic charm.
The Natural History Museum relaunched its online shop this summer in a blaze of incredible copywriting.
We featured it on the blog because it was so much fun it had to be shared. And now, here's the follow up post with some more highlights from its summer email campaign.
Fans of the word, great lizards and ecommerce, you're in for a blimmin' treat.
The Natural History Museum in Kensington, London, has a new online store.
Hopefully it'll prove inspiring for your own product copy.
Buy me, buy me, buy me!!!
Not what you want to hear. Sure it’s implied, but as soon as even the most straightforward of online purchases becomes that much more brazen, that’s when us consumers start to rethink our behavior.
So what makes for great ecommerce copywriting? What’s the difference between a quality product listing and a boring list of specs? Does it even matter?
Surely product copy is all about manipulation or at best, gentle coercion?
As content marketing becomes more and more vital to every industry, the ability to create quality copy, even for ecommerce has become a crucial skill. It’s a key way to market your brand and a fantastic way to separate yourself from similar competitors selling the same product.
Your excellent copy and the different ways you can use it can also make your brand more trustworthy and foster a deeper sense of loyalty.
Here are five fantastic examples of copy from around the ecommerce world that will hopefully inspire you. For more advice, check out Graham Charlton’s post on what makes great ecommerce product page copy.
Ever wanted to use bold or italics in a tweet? Or a strikethrough, in a Facebook update? Or to use a special character of some kind? Well here’s your chance…
It’s Friday, so I thought I’d cobble together a throwaway post based around the different text styles you can use on Twitter. Click on an image to go to the appropriate text rendering tool.
Apologies if this leads to a spate of nonsensical, illegible tweets.
Unicode… so much to answer for.
In developing a brand voice, many organisations make use of tonal values. This helps you work the different aspects of your brand’s promise into your writing.
You might want to be seen as experts in your domain, for example, but you also want your users to know you take customer service seriously.
So having a tonal value like ‘authoritative’ alongside another value such as ‘helpful’ can help you capture and project these different nuances in your comms.
Values enable you to flex your voice for different channels, audiences and message types. You might be a fashion-forward clothes retailer, for instance, so a tonal value like ‘inspirational’ might be an obvious choice in lots of contexts; on the other hand, when you’re explaining your returns policy, you probably want to dial up a different tonal value: ‘helpful’ perhaps, or ‘straightforward’.
Over the past week, I have received a couple of pieces of email marketing that just didn’t read very well and it got me thinking about copywriting, and how vital it is to be done correctly.
Now please don’t take this the wrong way. There was nothing exactly wrong with this particular email's copy per-se, nothing that I could put my finger on exactly.
But they just didn’t read very well and to be honest, that made me doubt the credibility of the business, let alone the marketing campaign.
I do realize that I may be quite unique in these instances, as many people who are not interested in the industry, or indeed writing, may not notice.
To be honest, I blame my hatred of terrible spelling and grammar on Facebook and other social media platforms, where I am forced to look at it every day. It’s a shame.
However, I thought I would share my thoughts on the blog just in case anyone else agrees. And by ‘my’ thoughts, I mean some great tips taken from our Email Marketing Best Practice Guide, which has just been released today.
Emails, from one to the next you either love them or hate them. Bad ones are deleted and I even enter the bin and 'delete forever' if I think a particular example is karmically altering my inbox.
In the past I've written about some things I like to see in emails. I've been on the look-out again and here you'll find six companies (B2B and B2C) that sent me emails deserving of mention for their creative strategies.
Design and copywriting are hard to teach, I'm certainly not somebody that sees natural order in things. See what you think of these examples and feel free to tell me if you would have deleted them in an instant.
Here is a checklist you can hold against your agency’s ‘about us’ section. Don't worry, it is equal parts 'do' and 'don't'.
Make sure you weed out examples of the latter and add in some of the former and your copy should improve. This list is solely about the content of your copywriting, the words you choose, not the formatting or style.
If you wonder why I’m qualified to create such a checklist, I can only cite my personal and professional interests in writing. I haven’t worked for many clients or won any awards but I have doggedly scrolled through many agency websites.
I must say that my favourite, in the end, was e3, which forgoes an 'about us' section altogether, opting instead for a little piece of copy on the homepage.
However, there are lots of great 'about us' pages out there, and even some of the 'don'ts' I have gathered work well in context. That means having a great copywriter on your team is essential.