Dawn Smith

maisol media, LLC - Copywriter
Atlanta, GA

    Role Playing Your Way to Effective Copy

    August 19, 2009

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    Miss-Statements
    Nancy Lublin’s latest column in Fast Company has advice for leaders of non-profits and for-profits obsessing over their overhead. She states, “You can’t assess an organization on one statistic. Instead, focus on effectiveness. That’s a harder story to tell and a trickier thing to measure.”
     

    By Dawn Smith, CEO and Copywriter at maisol media


    Role Playing Your Way to Effective Copy

    Woman Playing a RoleFergie’s song, “Labels or Love,” echoed off the walls in my home office. Suddenly, I was in Manhattan with a bag of designer clothes in one hand and an apple martini in the other.

    I am not a fashionista. If my client’s target market relates to this image, I will write in a voice so convincing they will want to have a martini with my client. The next day, I will abandon this character for my shift as an investment banker.

    Is my remix of the Stanislavsky approach a device to engage readers? Yes.

    Am I being disingenuous in using this acting approach to write clients’ stories? No.

    When a business owner considers the elements of mission statement, values, business processes and strategic goals for its brand, his or her company transforms into a living and evolving entity. With this evolution, a company develops its own character and voice.

    Here are three tips to move away from standard marketing chatter and find a voice that will speak to your market’s needs.  

    • Know Your Market’s Needs – Consumers and business owners open emails, search online and watch TV to find products and services to meet their needs. Thankfully, discovering those needs does not require expensive surveys or market research reports. Maslow’s Hierarchy reveals all consumers and business owners seek self-actualization, self-esteem, love and community, security, and basic physiological needs. Speak to consumers and business owners’ needs as if you are in a one-on-one conversation. Brand fanatics will follow.


    • Find Your VoicePixInk’s Ayesha Mathews brilliantly challenged Savor the Success members to consider aesthetic elements such as music or cars that represent their brands. When you consider the voice of your company, step beyond messaging documents or keyword lists. Build a character around the voice of your company. How does he or she look? What is his or her speaking style? What is his or her motivation to speak to your target audience? Acting as an authentic character that represents the values, mission statement and strategic goals of your company makes it easier to generate engaging copy that is consistent with your brand every time you put a pen to paper.


    • Set the Mood – What if you do not have a background in acting and role-playing sounds a little naughty? Step into the soul of your company by setting the mood. Create a soundtrack with music that represents your company or its latest product, service or project and play it as you write your copy. Observe your target market and conduct an imaginary conversation with them as you sit behind your laptop or scribble on your notepad. If you do it well, they will feel as if you are conversing with them as they read your copy in their personal spaces and offices around the world.


    Your potential clients are scanning the Internet and airwaves right now. Every one of them has a need. They are overlooking aggressive marketers for engaging personalities who speak to their needs. Which role will your company play?

    By Dawn Smith, CEO and Copywriter at maisol media

    Read Dawn's other blog entries >

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