How to Make Book “Sales Copy” Feel Like a Simple Conversation

From the Nonfiction Author Association:

You’ve put a ton of time into writing your nonfiction book and now you’re ready to sell a lot of copies, make a positive impact, and gain a loyal legion of fans.

. . . .

With all the social media platforms and digital marketing channels open to you these days, there’s no reason why this vision can’t come to fruition.

However, to achieve this goal you’re going to need an ongoing promotional campaign, the basis of which is strong “sales copy” for your book.

Now, I just put the term sales copy in quotes for a reason.

Over the last 12 years I’ve crafted marketing copy for over a hundred authors who’ve written books they intended to sell to people all over the world. However, many of them felt squeamish when they heard me use the terms “sales copy” or “persuasive sales copy” when talking about their marketing content.

The reason is terms like “persuasive sales copy” sound like a ploy you use when you want to trick or manipulate people into buying your books. And nobody wants to do that. The good news is that you don’t have to.

When written properly, persuasive sales copy can have the same feel as a friendly conversation you’d have in a coffee shop with a potential reader of your book. No hype. No fluff. No razzle-dazzle and no manipulation. Just straightforward honesty and authenticity.

. . . .

Today you live in a global economy that is tightly connected by social media platforms and video conferencing tools that enable you to speak with people around the world as if they were sitting right next to you.

This connectivity empowers you to sell your book to anyone, anywhere, any time. So, if you have a book that can energize, stimulate, enlighten, educate, or entertain, you need to let people know you have something valuable to share with them.

. . . .

In today’s online market it is easy to shy away from writing sales copy and simply substitute it with a large volume of blurbs, posts, articles, and videos that are intended to create “awareness” for your book.

Creating this content is definitely a sound strategy. However, at some point you also need to craft compelling sales copy that motivates readers to buy your book NOW …instead of later, or never.

. . . .

As I mentioned earlier, compelling book marketing copy can be written in the same tone as a casual chat between two friends in a coffee shop. When you understand this, then “persuasive sales copy” should no longer be a phrase that makes you apprehensive.

There is no doubt that marketing copy filled with hype, fluff, and unrealistic promises will turn people away. However, marketing copy with a casual, friendly tone can be highly effective if you lead people through a simple motivating sequence that 1) shows you have a precise understanding of what readers want, desire, or need; and 2) communicates the clear-cut benefits they’ll derive from reading your book.

It really is possible to do this by writing sales copy in a style that mirrors the tone and feel of a casual conversation you’d have with a good friend.

. . . .

To stand out in a crowded market, your book marketing copy needs to have a distinct voice in which it is written. The key here is to avoid writing your marketing copy in a “salesy” voice, and instead write it in a straightforward authentic voice that is true to your book.

For example, if you’ve written a self-development book that has a nurturing tone, write your marketing copy in a nurturing tone. If you’ve written a business book that has an authoritative edge to it, give your marketing copy an authoritative edge. If your book has a witty attitude to it, write your marketing copy with a witty attitude.

Chances are the voice and tone of your book is a direct reflection of you. So if you write your marketing copy through the same authentic voice as your book, it’s going to be much easier for you to give it a conversational tone that resonates with your readers.

. . . .

  • Avoid using worn-out clichés that don’t really mean anything like “second to none,” “cut above the rest,” or “to a whole new level.”
  • Stay away from basic general statements and popular buzz phrases.
  • Make sure your benefit statements are detailed, specific, and to the point.
  • Craft your copy as if you’re going to read it to a potential buyer while the two of you are drinking coffee together.

Link to the rest at the Nonfiction Author Association