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When writing copy for your audience, it’s essential to incorporate the language they would use. Otherwise, your words aren’t going to grab the attention of the kinds of people you want to connect with. The best way to know how your audience speaks is by conducting audience research. This does the heavy lifting for you: your messaging or words about your offers, services, or products become clearer and more strategic. The guesswork is taken out of the copy for you, which gives you the confidence to sell with success and know what your audience needs from you.
Our guest on the podcast today is Nadine Nethery. She is the founder of CAN DO! Content is a strategic website and email copywriter for female founders who want to intentionally attract, delight, and retain their dream customers. Her strategic take on audience research and copy turns every brand touchpoint into genuine connections that drive sales, celebrate loyalty, and surround you with keen brand advocates who happily do the word-spreading for you.
Over the years, Nadine has given global e-commerce success stories, game-changing startups, and industry-disrupting service providers the words to shine and the strategies to build a sustainable business long-term.
Nadine’s story is a long-winding one, like most copywriters and female business owners in the online space. She started with a corporate career in sales, communications, and marketing, all convenient skills to have as a copywriter. She is also a mother to three tiny humans that keep her on her toes when she isn’t in her copy cave. So Nadine’s whole search for more purpose came about while she was working in the corporate world, which felt uninspiring to her at times.
She did enjoy parts of the work she did, but overall hated being a number in the system and not seeing the impact she had daily within the business she was working in. So it all came down to an aha moment that made her take stock of how she wanted to move forward in the world. That’s where her soul-searching journey began. She knew that her world would always be intertwined with marketing in some way, and from there, she took a course where she came across copywriting as a profession.
While working full-time with Australia’s largest retailer and raising her kids, she began exploring the world of copywriting. She was able to take on a few clients, and organically they all ended up being female business owners, which brought her so much joy. What makes her career now as a copywriting professional so rewarding is being able to give them the words to shine and hearing their stories and passions going into their businesses. Nadine now feels like she is impacting their businesses with website and email copy by helping them piece together all the moving parts of their customer journey – which is where most business owners get stuck.
There are two crucial things you need for your messaging to be successful, and that comes down to 80% research and 20% creativity. So even as Nadine started as a copywriter, everyone seemed to think that it all boiled down to using creativity and a flair for words, but it is so much more.
Instead, it is about taking a step back and looking at your business from a strategic lens, the environment that you’re operating in, your industry, your niche, and most importantly, your customers. This deeper look allows you to get into their brains and unpack those deep thoughts, desires, pain points, and everything else that may be swirling around in their heads when selling your offer. So that 80% of research is all about getting into those brains and, from there, piecing the puzzle together and packaging it into words that speak to the core of your ideal client or customer.
Using your audience’s words to describe their state of mind, their current situation, and the transformation they are looking for is super important. You can also take a closer look after each launch you have, if you have digital products, for example, to see the new data that came in, the new environment you’re operating in, and so on because of the times we have been in like the pandemic, recessions, or any other glorious moment that’s been happening recently.
So as your environment changes, your messaging must also reflect those changes. Keep tweaking your messaging based on new research and insights you collect is always a good idea.
As we are on the topic of tweaking your messaging based on new insights you collect, it’s crucial to speak to the content you are strategically sharing with your audience for pre-launch and during the launch period. So with the research, you conduct, you want to make sure you are asking the right questions for ideas around your copy and messaging on your sales page, even for the pre-launch phase content, because you want to prime them to be ready to buy from you after landing on your website during the launch.
This is an empathy-led way of marketing to your audience to respect them as they go on a gradual priming journey rather than pushing those hard sales to them. When launching, you want to put much of your focus into the pre-launch phase of researching and warming your audience up.
If you skip out on this, you miss out on having a successful launch where you push strategic content for up to 90 days before you start pushing your offer. This helps you overcome any potential objections that come up for your audience because you have researched all those things, like how long it takes to complete your program, the financial investment, and the benefits that come from joining your program.
You have essentially helped your audience overcome their objections before opening the doors to your program. Now, you have to launch your offer and let your audience hear about it.
If you want a better connection with your audience, there are ways you can collect your own audience research to make this happen. First, you must ask the right questions, not only by sending out a survey with dropdowns and checkboxes but by asking open-ended questions that allow your audience to elaborate on their answers and use their language. This will enable you to use that information and wording in your copy in a way that grabs their attention.
In addition, some of these answers can inspire you to create inspirational taglines, statements, and subheadings on your website from those surveys.
The statements and feedback you receive from your customers and clients are best expressed by those who have participated in your service or program that you are trying to sell firsthand. So ask the right questions at the right time, like an onboarding survey, and check in to see the immediate transformation after working with you. These testimonials allow you to capture any objections or false beliefs they may have right after joining and how that has changed based on the result of the transformation. Depending on your product, you can also ask 30 to 60 more days out from giving them the deliverables.
This is where you get tangible results and outcomes that you can then include in your copy to make it more relatable, with things like doubling the number of leads since launching their website and signing on five more clients. Something like this is much more relatable than just using fluffy words like empowering and up-leveling that aren’t really applicable to daily life—so asking these questions at the right time and structuring them in a way that helps you tap into those insights and use that for content later on as you tweak your messaging.
Of course, this tweaking should be done every time something shifts in your business, so be sure to ask your audience before making those changes, as they can help you shape how you create and sell the product or offer for it to land with the right audience.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like peeking over a copywriter’s shoulders to see how they create copy? Well, Nadine has created a freebie that simply takes the mystery of copywriting for others, especially those who can’t afford to hire a copywriter just yet in their business to do some or all of their copywriting needs.
As she mentioned, 20% of copywriting is your creativity and flair for words, while 80% is doing the groundwork of getting to know your audience through the research you conduct.
Nadine has taken a one-on-one client project where she worked with a virtual CFO wanting to shift niches. This client needed a new website to reflect that new direction and speaks to that new demographic, so what the freebie does is it shows you an eye view of what data Nadine collected, how they gathered it, and how they turned those insights and intel into actual copy for her website. It shows you how to be a copywriter as you do the research and use that data to take a strategic look and listen to your audience.
We’ve covered creating content around a launch, but generally speaking, there are a few things to consider for content purposes. When you tap into conducting audience research, especially as an introvert, this will give you tons of inspiration regarding your content pillars.
For example, you could get inspiration for blog posts that live on your website and drive that targeted traffic to your offers and digital products. The same goes for your social media content, so rather than producing that content on an as-needed basis, you could pick one of your content pillars to bust audience objections, overcome false beliefs, or share transformations your offer or digital product produces. It takes the guesswork out of marketing your business because you have that strategic take and bucket list you can tap into whenever you’re stuck for content ideas. This also gives you confidence as an introvert to stand behind your messaging in the posts that you put out there because it comes straight from the source.
Nadine has given some quality tips and insights on creating copy around the messaging you get from audience research. If you want to connect with Nadine, use the resources below to connect with her on social media, get more copywriting tips for conducting audience research, and get a peek over her shoulder tutorial on how she creates her magic as a copywriter based on audience research.
[1:30] How Nadine’s background in marketing, sales, and communications created the perfect opportunity to become a copywriter
[5:17] The two things you must have to create successful messaging
[7:55] Using your audience research to develop strategic content for launching
[10:36] Ways of collecting your own audience research for better connection
[16:05] Getting a peek over the shoulders of a website and email copywriter
[18:13] Creating email and social media copy from the audience research you’ve conducted
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