Now that you are a pro at structuring your leaflet copy, we thought we would share with you our best copy tips that we’ve picked up from the marketing experts. Apply these principles and your audience will soon be waiting at the letterbox for your next leaflet.
TIP ONE: Keep your sentences to 16 words or less
Not everyone loves to read Charles Dickens. Even if they do, they don’t want to spend lots of time deciphering your leaflet. Children from year five upwards should be able to read your leaflet comfortably.
Spending time in front of screens makes us tired. Walking through the door from work to see your leaflet shouldn’t provide another challenge. Life is difficult enough.
TIP TWO: Write how people speak
We’re not suggesting you write “cuppa tea” instead of “cup of tea”. What we mean is that your style of writing shouldn’t be academic or pretentious. The message needs to be kept simple without superfluous words like “superfluous.”
TIP THREE: Your leaflet should be informative, educational, entertaining or all three.
Adverts are not the most exciting things to read when all you have to show are product features and commands.
By commands, we mean verbs telling people what to do: buy, get this offer, sign up today. Save these for your call to action at the end.
Instead, consider writing a leaflet that gives information such as opening hours, prices and services offered. You could also write a news story about one of your customers or something interesting that has been happening in your business. If you want to educate local people on a campaign, draft an article with facts, figures, quotes and illustrations.
TIP FOUR: In headlines, write numbers as 1, 2, 3 instead of words.
Pictures jump out at people 60,000 quicker than words on a page. A number is a shorthand or an icon representing the word, so use whatever tools necessary to illustrate your point quickest.
For example, in statistics, show the exact figure eg £2017.58 instead of rounding it down to £2000.
TIP FIVE: Good copy focuses, not only on what your product does but on what it does for your customer.
It’s no good listing every fact about your product. The main body of your copy needs to explain the benefits of the features (What’s in it for me?).
Remember the famous quote from Theodore Levitt:
People don’t want to buy a quarter-inch drill, they want a quarter-inch hole.
This means your product or service helps them achieve their primary objective. People don’t want to join a slimming club particularly, but they do want to feel their best on holiday.
It’s your job to help your customers understand how much better their lives would be with your product or service.
TIP SIX: Print out your copy and read it aloud to catch those typos and wordy sentences.
We are living in an age of paperless technology, but that’s not to say paper doesn’t have its place.
When you’re used to looking at a screen that flashes little lights into your eyes, it can be tiring to read. Give your eyes a rest and change the medium you are reading on. Print out your paper, get out your red or green pen and underline those typos.
Some pros swear by reading their copy backward so their brain doesn’t fill in the right information.
Reading out loud means slows your brain down and your mouth will stumble over anything that doesn’t make grammatical sense. You will also become aware of sentences that are going on too long, or where there are too many shorter staccato ones.
TIP SEVEN: Always get someone else to read your leaflet before you send it to print. They often spot typos and inaccuracies you have missed.
Don’t trust your own judgement. If there is someone in the office who is a stickler for spelling and grammar, don’t be afraid they may find mistakes. Let them help you before it’s too late and you have 10,000 leaflets with errors or the wrong information on them.
And then you’re done…
But are you? Once you’ve trialled your campaign, you could experiment with the copy to see if you get more customers.
Keep improving your leaflet copy and see what works.