The true definition of generic is a characteristic of or relating to a class or group of things; not specific. In other words, generic copy is copy that could be written for any audience, not specifically yours.
Why does that matter so much? It’s impossible to truly connect with your audience without speaking to them specifically. Without connection, the chances of a website visitor reaching out to you are slim.
While you’ll want to take some time getting to know your audience by creating a persona, you’ll also want to learn how to speak their language.
5 Ways to Speak Your Audience’s Language in Your Web Copy
To speak your audience’s language is to speak in a way that allows them to connect with you on a deeper level. Not only will they be able to understand you, but they’ll feel like they’ve found someone who truly “gets” them. And that’s powerful.
1. Use “You”
If there’s one thing you can do right now to improve your copy, it’s this: Open your website and replace “me” or “we” statements with “you” statements. It’s a simple way to ensure you’re speaking directly to the reader. Plus, it takes the focus off of you and places it where it belongs: on your customer.
2. Tell Their Story
Storytelling is powerful. Science tells us that stories cause the entire brain to react, captivating us and pushing us to keep reading. By writing your audience’s story, you add another layer of inspiration and power to your copy.
There are many ways to do this. For example, you can state how you solve their challenges and alleviate their fears in your copy. You can also write customer success stories and feature customer testimonials.
3. Show Empathy
Speaking of challenges and fears, a little bit of empathy for your audience goes a long way.
When a visitor lands on your website, they may be struggling with a problem they can’t work through alone. Consider an attorney, for example. An attorney will have website visitors that may be facing some of life’s toughest challenges. That attorney’s copy should meet them where they are—at rock bottom—and offer a helping hand back up.
Put yourself in your audience’s shoes. Try to see things from their perspective. Ask yourself this question:
If you were them, what would you need to hear from someone like you?
4. Solve Their Problem
Many web searches result from individuals simply trying to solve a problem. They might be looking for how to do something or what step to take next. It’s your job to solve that problem, delivering a solution that will offer them some relief.
Let’s use our attorney example again. A potential client might perform a Google search for how to start the divorce process.
That same client might then land on our attorney’s website via a blog post about the divorce process and the first steps to get started. To make the post actionable, that potential client should find a call to action on that blog post that inspires them to reach out to our attorney.
Problem solved; connection made.
Solving your audience’s problems highlights the fact that you understand them on a level that goes beyond the basics.
5. Use Their Words
We’ve saved potentially the most important piece for last. We want this to stick with you.
Use your audience’s words in your copy.
Edit out any industry jargon that your audience may not understand. Replace that with their words. Don’t be afraid of a little slang here and there—if that’s what your customers use. You’re sure to win when you trade smart speak for familiarity.
To do this effectively, you’ll need to use your listening skills. Take the time to listen to how your audience speaks on social media or via email. Listen to how your customers speak to you when they call. Write down their words and then weave them into the copy you create.
Who Is Your Website Copy Speaking To?
If you can’t say you’re speaking directly to your audience in your website copy, it’s time for a change. If you feel stuck on how to do this, don’t go it alone. We can help! To learn more about creating copy that connects, send us a message.