Do you ever wish you could find a spark to ignite your writing?
Like a copywriting example that shows how to be more persuasive?
Or one that demonstrates how to make your copy sparkle with personality?
Let me tell you a little secret about how I learned to write
But I’ve learned even more by studying website copy. I dissected the copy and learned why some copy smells fishy, and why some copy enthralls. I learned why some copy bores me and makes me click away, and why other copy pulls me in and seduces me to buy.
Today I share 21 great copywriting examples from my swipe file. Whenever you get stuck with writing, return here to find that spark to start writing your own copy.
Shall we begin?
7 copywriting examples that show how to be persuasive
Click here to join the 16-Part Snackable Writing Course for busy people (it’s free!)
Good copy starts with understanding how your product or service helps your customers, as Basecamp shows:
Basecamp helps you wrangle people with different roles, responsibilities, and objectives toward a common goal: Finishing a project together.
2. I Will Teach You To Be Rich
What problem are your readers struggling with? And how does that make them feel?
Like no other Ramit Sethi of I Will Teach You To Be Rich knows how to get into the mind of his target audience by empathizing with their feelings.
On his sales page for the online course “How to Talk to Anybody,” Ramit Sethi empathizes with his readers’ feelings of social awkwardness:
I was socially awkward. I would say the wrong thing at the wrong time. Everyone around me would stare at me silently. And later, I would beat myself up about saying the wrong thing. This went on for years.
When readers feel you understand their problems, they become keen to learn more about your solution.
FireBox copywriters have a knack for finding problems you didn’t even know you had, and then offering you the perfect solution:
Keeping warm is no mean feat when the merciless chills of winter start creeping in. You can clutch onto a smelly hot water bottle that’ll be cold in less than an hour; shuffle round in a pair of slippers, layer on a multitude of hats and scarves or just give up and crawl back into bed.
Now a distinctly more toasty solution has popped up – the Toast Heated Pillow. Snuggle and squeeze this super-sized (and very smiley) slice and he’ll keep you nice and cosy for up to 4 hours.
4. Innocent Drinks
Good copywriters sell products, but great copywriters turn simple products into an enchanting experience.
Note how Innocent Drinks associates a simple drink with a holiday feel. They smartly mix facts and emotion—a persuasive recipe:
There are times when you fancy a bit of extra sparkle with your refreshment. So allow us to introduce innocent bubbles tropical – a delicious, lightly sparkling blend of pure pineapple, orange and grape juice, spring water and absolutely nothing else. It’s a bit like a posh holiday in a can, only without the pesky sand. And with one portion of fruit and only 90 calories per serving, it’s the bubbly way to get one of your 5-a-day.
We often think of selling as presenting the rational arguments to buy, but you sell on emotion first, then help people justify their purchase with rational arguments.
Being seductive requires more than offering solutions to problems. You also have to bat away reader objections.
For instance, to sell a course on creating a business plan, AppSumo doesn’t pussyfoot around the objection that business plans are a waste of time:
I know what you’re thinking: business plans are a waste of time. They become outdated the second they’re finished.
And for the most part, you’d be right. Old school biz plans can suck up months of time better spent creating awesome businesses.
But as the ancient Hawaiians say, “You can’t hit what you don’t aim for”.
To sell, you need to explain why people would care about your offer, and then take away their hesitations to buy. In an honest way.
Apple‘s copywriters are marketing poets.
Rhythm, rhyme, and repetition make their copy smooth and persuasive. I’ve learned more from studying their copy than from any copywriting handbook.
Ingenuity makes it thin.
Aluminum makes it strong.
Not just a thinner display.
A better display.
Weak copy is full of marketing blurb. In contrast, persuasive copy is infectiously passionate. Fiftythree designs and manufactures styluses for iPad. Using short sentences and simple words, they convey their passion:
WE MAKE STUFF.
Beautiful, practical, meaningful stuff.
We make what we love.
We ❤ what we do.
But over the years, we noticed that somehow, along the way, software designed to help us be creative actually made us less creative. We believe the best ideas often emerge from the simplest tools: pencil and paper.
4 examples of voice in copywriting
Good copy doesn’t try to impress but aims to communicate with clarity and power.
Don’t want your copy to sound like you’re shoving products down people’s throat?
not convinced yet? – oh dear!
You’re a tough nut to crack. Why not come and see us at our showroom in Chelsea or Bath and try one for size?
Good writing is simple, but not simplistic.
The website of the UK’s government keeps content to the point, helping readers get answers to their questions quickly:
You don’t pay duty or tax on goods you bring in from the European Union (EU) as long as you:
- transport them yourself
- will use them yourself or give them away as a gift
- have paid duty and tax in the country where you bought them
In order to use MailChimp, you must:
- be at least eighteen (18) years old and able to enter into contracts;
- complete the registration process;
- agree to the Terms; and
- provide true, complete, and up to date contact information.
Dropbox sound helpful, friendly, and full of empathy, using the words their customers would use, too:
Even if your computer has a meltdown or your phone goes for a swim, your stuff is always safe in Dropbox and can be restored in a snap. Dropbox is like a time machine that lets you undo mistakes and even undelete files you accidentally trash.
Evernote‘s copy is also simple, engaging, and focused on the benefits of their products to you as a reader:
Everything in Evernote instantly syncs across any computer or phone you use. Start working on one device and continue on another without ever missing a beat.
When you target a wide group of consumers, it’s often best to keep your words simple and writing in plain English.
However, when you have a narrowly defined audience, you can engage users with personality-infused writing.
13. Man Crates
Man Crates ships “bragworthy gifts for men.” What I love about their site is that they speak strongly to a clearly defined audience:
You just spent Thanksgiving at your vegan in-laws’ house. You did things you told yourself you never would, things you’ll probably never forget. Maybe for a moment, you were almost fooled by the yeast gravy and tofu turkey. But you survived.
Come back to us. Dial in the Slaughterhouse Crate for an immediate and full recovery of your carnivorous manhood.
The copywriters at Purple write like humans with a dash of humor. Here’s how they explain what a comfortable mattress means for you:
The only mattress that intelligently adapts to the human body for mind-blowing, personalized comfort. Translation: Wake up every morning with your happy face on.
The Purple Smart Comfort Grid™ effortlessly isolates motion, so you don’t feel your partner, posterity, or pets when they wiggle about.
15. Brew Dog
Your voice sets you apart from the competition, and pulls your fans closer to you.
Scottish micro brewery Brew Dog don’t have shareholders, but equity punk investors; and their beers are called Five AM Red Ale, Dead Pony Pale Ale, and This. Is. Lager. Here’s how they describe their first beer Punk IPA:
THE BEER THAT BEGAN A REVOLUTION.
Our scene-stealing flagship is an India Pale Ale that has become a byword for craft beer rebellion; synonymous with the insurgency against mass-produced, lowest common denominator beer. Punk IPA charges the barricades to fly its colours from the ramparts – full-on, full-flavour; at full-throttle.
Copywriting examples that start from the Why
Good copy is written from the heart, staying true to a company’s real values.
Unfortunately, too often, copy is full of gobbledygook as missions are made up and values feel fake.
The companies below are different.
16. Waterfield Bags
Tired of reading corporate mission statements full of gobbledygook? Or what about lists of inflated company values nobody believes in?
Here’s how Waterfield Bags describe their company culture, using concrete details for credibility:
You won’t find corporate intrigue, shareholder revolt, or venture capital drama at our modest headquarters. Instead you will find pot-luck lunches, group outings, and the occasional employee celebration.
Gary Waterfield started the company in 1998 with these principles which still guide us today:
- Make products you can be proud of
- Treat people with respect
- Exercise kindness—we’re all human
Aside from leading the design process, Gary often jumps in to answer customer e-mails, sharpen the leather splitter, or fix the copy machine.
17. MSF / Doctors without Borders
Value statements can be hopelessly robotic and empty, but MSF uses a concrete example to explain the concept of neutrality:
In a conflict situation, we don’t take sides, but go where people’s medical needs are greatest. In the ward of one MSF field hospital, you might find wounded civilians alongside injured soldiers from opposing sides. Hostilities and weapons have to be left at the gate.
18. MAG International
The content of UK-based charity MAG International makes us imagine what it’s like to live in a land contaminated by cluster bombs, land mines, and mortars. A mix of facts and emotion makes their content persuasive:
Imagine if, somewhere outside your front door, there is a powerful explosive weapon waiting patiently for you, or a member of your family, to disturb it.
Because it’s buried, or perhaps hidden from view, avoiding it is a constant game of chance. There could be one of them, there could be 100. You don’t know how many there are and neither does anyone else.
Every day millions of people live with the threat of landmines or other unexploded weapons on their doorstep.
And, each day, nine people are killed or suffer horrific injuries because of landmines or abandoned weapons left behind after war.
Patagonia shows their values to set themselves apart and connect with their audience:
Patagonia grew out of a small company that made tools for climbers. Alpinism remains at the heart of a worldwide business that still makes clothes for climbing—as well as for skiing, snowboarding, surfing, fly fishing, mountain biking and trail running. These are silent sports. None require an engine; rarely do they deliver the cheers of a crowd. In each, reward comes in the form of hard-won grace and moments of connection with nature.
20. Naked Wines
Naked Wines funds talented wine makers to create wine. Through their crowd-funding, they create connections between the wine drinkers and makers, as shown in this testimonial:
Drinking good wine is enough pleasure in itself, but having a sense of relationship with the winemakers, that is beyond the purely commercial, adds something else to the experience.
The best copy is often written by your customers.
Click here to join the 16-Part Snackable Writing Course for busy people (it’s free!)
Storytelling in sales copy
Legendary copywriter Joseph Sugarman suggested stories can be invaluable because they create an emotional bond keeping your potential buyers reading on.
And when we’re reading a story, our barriers to sales messages go down and the messages slip under the radar.
But how do you include stories in your copywriting? Below follow 4 ace examples.
21. J Peterman
The copywriters at fashion retailer J Peterman are masters at turning simple product descriptions into fascinating stories, making their dresses, and caftans, and coats even more desirable:
Cool breezes off Okawa River. Cherry blossoms glittering.
Naoko and I practice hanami: picnicking under a sakura tree (ancient Japanese custom once reserved for Imperial Court).
She picks up a pink petal, murmuring “Shibui.”
She smiles. “Think beautiful in its simplicity.”
“Like this.” I gesture to her classic, fully buttoned collarless coat.
“No, Peterman.” She stands, unbuttoning. “This celebrates me, the unexpected.”
She opens her soft wool coat to reveal a vibrant leopard print lining.
22. Hiut Denim
Hiut Denim uses a story to explain why they’re making jeans. This Welsh jeans manufacturer writes honest copy full of passion:
Our town is going to make jeans again
Cardigan is a small town of 4,000 good people. 400 of them used to make jeans. They made 35,000 pairs a week. For three decades.
Then one day the factory closed. It left town. But all that skill and knowhow remained. Without any way of showing the world what they could do.
That’s why we have started The Hiut Denim Company. To bring manufacturing back home. To use all that skill on our doorstep. And to breathe new life into our town.
As one of the Grand Masters said to me when I was interviewing: “This is what I know how to do. This is what I do best.” I just sat there thinking I have to make this work.
So yes, our town is going to make jeans again.
23. Tuft & Needle
Mattress manufacturer Tuft & Needle have a good story to tell about why they started their business, too:
JT had just gotten married and he and his wife set out to buy their first piece of furniture together–a new mattress. The search began at local mattress showrooms; vast fields of mattresses neatly laid out under the buzz of fluorescent lights. Pushy salesmen pushed them to buy a fully loaded, feature-rich memory foam mattress. For $3,300 it should have been the pinnacle of comfort, but it wasn’t. To make matters worse, the return policy rendered it impossible to return. It was like car shopping. Actually it was worse than car shopping.
The truth about writing seductive web copy
Writing good copy doesn’t start with knowing the right words and improving your use of punctuation.
Good copy starts with understanding your customers and knowing why they choose you rather than millions of others.
Find the audience who loves you. Offer a service that delights them.
And then write your copy. Simply explain why your customers fall in love with your service, your product, and you.
Want to improve your writing skills further?
- Discover the Power of the Subtle Nod and other persuasive tricks
- Learn how to cure sentence bloat and avoid irritating your readers
- Receive 16 simple tips to write more seductive content and win more business