5 Ad Copy Tips for Marketers and Brands

Online advertising is one of the most powerful tools available at our fingertips, but there’s one problem: the success of your ads all hinges on your ability to get people to click it.

Of course, there are other factors that go into the sale, such has having a great landing page and an offer that resonates with customers, but if you aren’t getting a good CTR (click through rate), it’s because of what you have written in the ad.

So, what can you do to improve it? Here are 5 tips to help you improve the effectiveness of your ad copy.

1.   Make Sure You’re Doing the Basics

Before you worry about perfecting your ad copy, make sure you’re doing the basics. For example, if you’re doing Pay Per Call ads, make sure you’ve actually got your keywords in there and that you’ve got all your targeting parameters right. We can work on the copy all day long, but if you’ve got something wrong in your ad settings, you’re not going to move the needle.

Computer and pen with Coffee

2.   Make Sure You Show Customers How You Solve the Problem

Avoid clickbait-style headlines and keep things simple by showing your customers how you’ll actually help them solve their problem in a straightforward, believable manner. For example, say you sell a laser hair removal device for women, your current ad may read like this:

“Learn How Katie’s New Laser Hair Removal Device Made Her Hair Disappear Forever!”

But what will actually work better is:

“Easiest At-Home Laser Hair Removal Device that Lasts for 6 Months+”

You can definitely add some hype and excitement in the ad copy itself if that’s on-brand for you and your industry, but avoid it in headlines, especially for PPC. This leads us onto our next point…

3.   Choose an Appropriate Tone

Before you put together your ad copy, you need to think about the tone of the message you are putting out there. You want your tone to convey that you care about your customers, but that you are still an authority in your sector. Consider the norm for your industry. For example, an ad for a laser eye surgeon may read:

“Top Laser Eye Surgeon in New York City – Get 20/20 vision after 1 hour surgery with full aftercare support and easy repayment plan. Book your free consultation today.”

That ad covers everything you might want to know and assures people of their professionalism. However, if the same ad read:

“Best Laser Eye Surgeon in New York City – Don’t Risk Your Vision With Another Surgeon! Lowest Price in the City! Call XXX-XXX-XXXX to Get Your Vision Fixed ASAP!!!”

… you’d probably stay away from it at all costs because it sounds like someone shouting from a market stall – it’s not appropriate for an eye surgeon.

People working at a table going through ad tips for marketers

4.   Utilize Emotional Triggers

Everyone’s buying decisions ultimately come down to how something makes them feel. Yes, you can compare features all day long for software or tech, but we often make illogical choices simply because the not-as-good-on-paper option made us feel good. That’s why you need to use emotional triggers in your ads.

Try not to use fear language as this is generally less effective than positive emotive language, though scarcity is fine. There’s a great list of emotional trigger words here you can use to inspire your copy.

5.   Use Color and Graphics Effectively

Take the use of color and images in your ads seriously. Different colors and tones evoke a whole range of emotions, and you can utilize this psychology to match the feeling you wish to evoke in your potential customers when they view your ad.

You might want to avoid shades of red because they are used to represent errors or warnings in technology, and so your ads could be misinterpreted. If you use red as part of your brand colors, consider using red only for your call-to-action, as it will draw the eye.

For images, sometimes simpler is better. The key to getting any ad right is in the testing, but this is nowhere truer than with your images. The prettiest image isn’t always what converts best, so take a look at the other ads in your industry and test a range of different pictures over time. Your images should enhance your copy, not replace it, so intrigue and catch the eye so your headline and the copy can do the rest of the work.

When done right, ads can offer an amazing ROI (return on investment), and you can even optimize them to the extent that for every dollar you put in, two come back. The key to this is constant testing and, more importantly, sticking with your ads for long enough that you can draw accurate conclusions. All too many businesses are fearful of their ad spend, so give your ads at least a week (ideally two) before you make a change.