Who do you think you’re talking to?!

Honest Communications, a garden and home PR agency, social media management, content creation and communications agency

We love to write, that’s part of the reason that we do this job (as well as working with great people and brands!). But how do we make sure that people love to read our copy as much as we love to write it? Well, the answer is within the question… people! We write for people! It seems obvious, but it can be so easy when writing a press release or a social media post to focus on the product or the message and to forget that you’re actually trying to communicate with human beings.

We have a rigorous internal approvals process here at Honest, and we always try to give honest (naturally), constructive feedback on all written pieces of work. When reading any piece of work we always have these questions in our minds:

·       Who are we aiming this at?

·       Would we / our client actually speak like this in real life?

·       Does this really make sense to the reader?

·       Have we used too much jargon for the reader?

·       Have we over-complicated the subject for the reader?

·       Will the reader care about what we have written?

·       Will this be interesting, useful, entertaining or educational to the reader?

·       If someone who knew nothing about the topic read this, would they understand?

By going through this internal checklist, we can make sure that we’re never creating content for the sake of it, and that we stay true to our mission of writing for our intended audience.

Part of the beauty of working in an agency is that we have a variety of clients that each has a different tone of voice and audience, so we have to switch up the way that we write for each of them accordingly. What remains the same, though, is the need to direct our copy to a human being. Once we know who we’re talking to, we can create content that is relevant to them, that answers questions that they have, and that resonates with them – it’s only through this that we can really engage with them. Seems simple, but it can be the first thing that copywriters forget when tasked with a new product release or industry insights overview.

As part of one of our recent team knowledge shares, we watched the ‘Declaring War on Bland: Copywriting as Fresh Literature’ TEDTalk by Jean Tang and she had some great insights into how to make your copy resonate with your audience, and she has her own checklist:

1.     Define your objective

2.     Explore your audience

3.     Challenge and review what you have written

4.     Percolate over your copy, have you met your object, have you written for your audience

5.     Humanise your work and make it relatable

6.     Edit

This approach is really effective in making sure that copy conveys the right message to the right people in the right way!

If you’re interested in finding out how to write effective copy – or if you would like us to do it for you – a great place to start is by taking our Brand Voice Workshop to find out who you’re speaking to, and how you should sound! Get in touch today to find out more.