The Savvy Copywriter’s Advantage: Creative Storytelling

The Savvy Copywriter’s Advantage: Creative Storytelling

Reader Comments (37)

  1. This really hits on using conversation and passion in your voice to connect with an audience instead of trying to establish yourself as too high of an authority figure. Good stuff.

  2. How about convincing each client to hold a contest asking their existing customers to submit the best story of them using the client’s product?

    Your client could have hundreds (maybe thousands) of testimonials wrapped up in nice story packages – and all from a simple contest offering up something of value for free.

  3. James,

    Great reminder to weave storytelling into all copywriting. When writing for the same products and services over and over, I find it takes work to continue spinning out creative copy on the same subject matter. In these cases particularly, I turn to my old journalism storytelling skills – finding the unique angle and story in every project. It certainly helps avoid all copy sounding exactly the same.


  4. Some stories become the brand of the organization. Despite it’s current size, people still think of Southwest Airlines as the little guy trying to bring cost effective travel to the masses. Or Sam Walton creating Wal-Mart. Or Steve Jobs with Apple. Most good copywriting stories have an individual who embodies the desired characteristics of the brand identity (such as Janice’s Jared/Subway example). This is a people business after all. 🙂


  5. I love stories in copy, and I don’t do nearly enough of it. Conversation I’ve got covered, but I don’t have enough real stories.

    Something I need to put more focus on–thanks for the reminder!

  6. @ Sonia – My pleasure to remind you of the little things – you do the same for me many times over.

    @ Mark – That’s an interesting point – how stories can help you develop your brand. Kudos for that thought.

    @ Janice – As a matter of fact, I was talking to someone about that story the other day. Stories are memorable, even in marketing. Or is that especially in marketing?

    @ Casey – Ha, agreed! Using storytelling sure helps take out the monotony of more straightforward writing. Cheers!

    @ Bucktown – That’s a great idea. I’d be curious to see what people come up with for the Pen Men!

    @ Todd – Sometimes the best authorities are the best storytellers. Take Brian, for example. His posts right here on Copyblogger are some of the best samplings of using story in copywriting that I’ve ever seen.

  7. I suspect that a lot of people think storytelling is something you’ve got to have a talent for (like singing). But that’s not true. We all use storytelling all the time, in our everyday conversation – and that’s what good copywriting so often is about: a conversation. The key is to listen to yourself talking to someone and identify every time you’re engaging in storytelling.

  8. One of my favorite sayings is an old Zulu proverb: “There’s no such thing as truth, only stories.”

    When it comes to blogging, often our own stories are the best material we have and we don’t even know it because to us they’re just (sometimes unpleasant) memories. We can’t see ourselves as others see us, can’t see the story in ourselves that others would find appealing.

  9. Stories are excellent no matter if it’s for blog posts or salesletters.

    People love stories and it sucks them into the writing. Many good writers use stories that are related to the topic they want to write about and then have a punchline at the end to drive end it.

    For example, you can talk about a person having lots of success with his blog on and earning great income from it.

    Then he gets banned for a reason that he can’t find out about. He lost everything overnight. No more income with bills to pay etc…

    Then end the story with the advantage of hosting your own blog etc…and offer your services.

    Works like crazy once you have a story to get their attention first.

  10. @ Michael – The day we stopped blogging about information and started telling our stories was the day our blog took off.

    And I think you’re very right. A *ton* of people say, “Why do people want to know about me? What’s special about me?”

    Everything. Every experience you ever lived is special and can teach, mentor or entertain.

    @ Ahg3 – You have some interesting stuff on your blog. I was disappointed to see erratic posting (makes me think the blog isn’t in this for the long haul)… what’s up with that?

  11. Jack Zipes stresses the pont that traditional storytellers empower people with the tale they tell, letting them know that “Yes, they can”.
    A ‘copyteller’ empowers the product, loading it with something it does not have on its own.
    What a change of perspective…

  12. Gary Halbert called it “My Story Marketing”. Of course sometimes you are telling someone else’s story, but the concept is still the same.

    Great post, and still the best way to connect with a reader whatever the format.

  13. Great stories are truly viral — they are easy to remember and fun to share with others. A great story can turn consumers into your word-of-mouth marketing team.

  14. “A copywriter is the selling type… she uses her talents to promote a person, place, thing, or idea.”

    Are all copywriters female?

  15. True this, copyblogger. If one thinks laterally about storytelling then all points of contact with the public add to a company’s story – including visual images, publicity and copywriting. Think semiotics – the sign and the signifier.

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