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The first thing you MUST do before writing a single word of copy is RESEARCH both the product and the audience.

You research the product to understand it’s appeal and hopefully its uniqueness.

You research the audience to understand their need for the product, what the value of the product is for them, and how to get their attention for it.

Those who write copy for their own products already should know the product well enough but hired guns (i.e., outside coypwriters) need to do this research.

But the thing in common with both these types of copywriters is the researching of the audience (some refer to this as the “market”).

So, in this post, I’m going to cover an aspect of audience research, namely, how to connect with your audience. But first, I’d like you to watch a very interesting video on the subject.

At the time of this post, it had received 3,133,711 views. Watch and then we’ll discuss.

Hopefully, you’ve actually watched the video rather than just drop down to this sentence because what I’m about to talk about probably isn’t going to make sense if you skip the video. Don’t worry. No one is looking. You can sneak back up there and watch the whole thing. Go ahead. I won’t tell anyone.

So the first thing you should do when considering your audience/market is: what do you want for them?

In the video, what did Brian want for his audience, Ed the blind man and his wife? Brian says:

“I didn’t want Ed to feel tricked; I wanted him to feel magic, I wanted him to be magical, and his wife, this woman who spends her life looking out for him, I wanted her to see him in that light, and for them to share in that experience together.”

Notice the word FEEL. He wanted Ed to FEEL magic. And in the same way, you need to know how you want your audience to FEEL. Why? Because you move people through emotion, not logic. And the sense of “FEELING” is an emotion.

With copy you’re trying to sell something. The way you do that best is to:

  1. Serve your audience by adding value to their lives. The product should do that. And,
  2. Connect with them at an emotional level so they GET the message.

And the way you connect with them is to first decide how you want them to FEEL when they buy the product and experience how it adds value to their lives.

Then you decide how they FEEL now, without the product.

And finally, you want to connect the two in their minds and PROVE to them how the product will accomplish that transition.

How do you decide how they FEEL now? Well, as Brian says in the video…

“if you want to get to know someone’s emotional perspective, one of the simplest ways to do it, ask. Ask questions. Too often we’re afraid to ask people questions because we feel like it will be rude, or somehow they won’t want to answer, but we underestimate people’s willingness to answer our questions.”

Notice that he didn’t say get a focus group (or any group) together and ask them. That’s because you’re most likely to get the WRONG answers…answers that are what they think you want to hear or what they think makes them look good in front of the others.

No. Ask them one at a time, like in a survey or in a response to an email.