Copywriting Exercises: How to Transform Long, Boring Sentences Into Short, Powerful Copy

Safalta Expert Published by: Shivam Ray Updated Thu, 11 Apr 2024 05:11 PM IST

Highlights

If you only take one copywriting practice from this list, it should be this one.The only way to improve this ability is to type or write. Please understand that watching courses and reading copywriting books are helpful. But the biggest impact isn't about the techniques and best practices.It's about applying the knowledge gained from these sources to help your or your client's business grow.

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The best content creators are great copywriters.Through written or spoken words, they sway the decisions of their followers.The key to winning as a content creator is to hone your persuasive copywriting skills. But how can you practice this skill? Like any other skill.The more you do it.The better you get. In this article, I will share some of the best copywriting practices that I used at the beginning of my journey. Some professional skills are difficult to define because they involve things most people do every day. Not all of us are product managers or accountants, even though we all handle projects and personal money.

Source: Safalta

Copywriting is the same—since most Americans spent years learning how to write in school, many don't realize that copywriting, especially for business, is an entirely different skill in itself. As a copywriter, I can tell you firsthand that people underestimate the amount of work that goes into developing this skill. The good news is that any writer can learn to write copy that sells with a little instruction and a good bit of practice. Let's break down the key elements of great copy and the steps you should take to create it.

Table of Content

  1. Why are copywriting practices important?

  2. What are the best copywriting practices

       3. How to practice copywriting
 

Why are copywriting practices important : 

What do pro basketball and football players do. Your favorite singer. And what do the loudest speakers have in common? Practice, practice, practice...and lots of practice. Sure, natural talent will help someone get ahead, but for long-term success, practice is still king. So if you want to achieve significant success in copywriting, you will have to put your heart and a lot of time and effort into honing your craft. Additionally, copywriting exercises will equip you with industry-neutral skills.

  • express your thoughts well

  • Persuasion skills to influence people's behavior and decisions

  • improving your mental discipline

  • enhancing your problem-solving skills

These are some of the benefits of learning copywriting. So again, practice, practice, and practice!
 

What are the best copywriting practices : 

Here are my 13 best copywriting exercises you can try to enhance your skills:
 

Handwriting Copy : 

Handwriting copy is the most controversial copywriting practice.Some experts say that this practice of copywriting is not helpful and wastes time.Some experienced copywriters consider this method their holy grail.Opinions are divided on this, but I suggest you try it first and see if you find it useful. Because, in my case, it is. Here's how you do it: Choose copy that performs (e.g. sales page, an ad, an email campaign)

"But how do I know if a copy is working?"

It depends on the piece of copy. If it's a sales page, you'll never go wrong with a sales page for the most popular companies in your favorite industry. If you're looking to copy a digital ad, the Facebook Ads Library is a gold mine for me. Handwrite some ads first, but I recommend that you check the publication date of the ad and how long it has been active.The longer the ad duration, the more likely this ad is to perform well.
 

Elevate your skills Advanced Certification in Digital Marketing Online Programme: Clicks here to enroll now
 

Spend 30 minutes a day copywriting : 

If you only take one copywriting practice from this list, it should be this one. The only way to improve this ability is to type or write. Please understand that watching courses and reading copywriting books are helpful.But the biggest impact isn't about the techniques and best practices.It's about applying the knowledge gained from these sources to help your or your client's business grow.Granted, you will write very poor copy on your first attempt. And honestly probably your first 50 to 100 pieces will be garbage.But you have to move forward and learn from those mistakes.You know what they say, "Fail fast, learn fast.If you want to learn a skill practice it.  LeBron James and Cristiano Ronaldo didn't become the GOAT in their respective sports by watching YouTube videos or reading books all day. To become a better copywriter, you should practice copywriting daily.
 

Create your swipe file : 

Swipe files are a copywriter's mini-library. (Although I wouldn't consider it small, especially if you're adding to this collection regularly) But what are swipe files? Swipe File is a collection of ads, campaigns, headlines, etc. that you found interesting. And hopefully, because they are effective.OK, but why do I need the swipe file? Creating a swipe file will help you draw out creative ideas, especially when the creative juices are as dry as the Sahara desert. Swipe has a huge collection of copy pieces from various marketers and advertisers around the world. But I would highly suggest you make one for yourself. Not only will this be a better fit for you and your industry, but it will also force you to get into the habit of finding great copy. How do you build your own? Take screenshots of good copywriting: Once you've narrowed down the storage, it's time to take some screenshots of those amazing copies you've stumbled upon. You have two options. you can either:Dedicate a specific time of day when you intentionally look for catchy headlines and catchy ads.

Or

Let it happen naturally. (That's what I like to do) I carry on with my normal day and always look for great copywriting. Compelling headlines, humorous ads, and inspiring posters. Have to be ready all the time.Because trust me they are everywhere and they form the basis of your copywriting research.If it's a digital ad I can take a screenshot.Organize your files into folders: I'll spend about 10 minutes every week sorting these ads into different folders for easier navigation. I would group all Facebook ads into one folder. It's the same with posters, sales letters, and newspaper headlines.

Pro Tip: In addition to creating a swipe file for catchy headlines, try creating one for bad ads as well. If you're aware of the mistakes other copywriters make, it's easy to avoid them.
 

Also Read: The Ultimate Guide to Mobile-first Indexing and Website Optimization

Flush-out Method : 

I found this exercise effective in harnessing every drop of your creativity. Here's how I do it: Choose the ad you want to write (it can be a counterfeit product or an existing product) write a headline about it Repeat step 2 (50 times). Now I know what you're thinking.
50 headlines for the same ad?
Yes, it sounds crazy, but if you think about it, this practice is smart. Because most of the time, the first 10 headlines you write will be a variation of the first headline.
Same idea, different words.
Needless to mention, the first few headlines may suck. So you might want to get those bad headlines out of your system so you're left with the good stuff.
This copywriting exercise will inspire you to explore unconventional ideas diverse viewpoints and writing styles.
Pro Tip: Don't just change the words and sentence arrangement. I suggest you try attacking from different angles. Let loose and enjoy it.
 

Look around (no, seriously...): 

This is by far the simplest method for incorporating copywriting into your daily life. All you have to do is carry on with your normal day and appreciate the copy. You should always bring your copywriter's magnifying glass with you and simply look for the copy as you go about your day. You're in luck because copies are everywhere.

  • billboard advertising

  • coffee shop posters

  • Instagram or Facebook Ads

Just to name a few. When I see a copy that catches my attention, I immediately dive into reading and analyzing that copy. The key thing here is to ask yourself these questions:

  • Why did it catch my attention? (What was the hook?)

  • Who is this ad appealing to? (target audience)

  • Is the customer's problem addressed? (customer needs/wants)
     

Reduce Ads:

You've probably heard that people have a shorter attention span than goldfish.
But I think it is not so.
People tend to pay less attention to long-form content.
Gone are the days when people liked to be teased for long periods without getting the value you promised.
However, if you do it thoroughly you can still overcome it.
But generally speaking, the easiest way to alienate even your most loyal followers is to ramble on and never get across the point.
So let me cut to the chase and give you an example.
Compare this.
“A lot of copywriters who are new to the game have difficulty expressing their ideas in as few words as possible. It's your job to use this to your advantage and beat the rookie copywriters who write copy that convinces people in a few words.”

To practice writing a summary, choose an advertisement.Your swipe files may come in handy. After that, review the text to see if you can convey the same ideas with fewer, clearer words.Notice how I highlighted the word simple.Sometimes, you'll find other words that will shorten the sentence at the expense of complicating your message.
See this example.
Compared to "his son gives him strength".
"His son cheers him on."
Technically the second sentence is shorter, but it is also more complex than the first one.
The purpose of this exercise is to get into the habit of writing copies with zero fluff.
But one should never compromise with simplicity.
 

Choose a title, then rewrite it: 

Headlines are the most important part of an effective copy.
Because if your headlines aren't noticeable, forget about the rest of your copy as it will never see the light of day again...
There's no point showing how your product can change a customer's life if they're not even reading your copy. So it's no big deal that you need to be excellent at writing attention-grabbing headlines.
And this exercise will help you work on that skill. let's get to work.

  • Go to your swipe file (or magazines, newspapers, billboards, FB ads library)

  • Choose a title that catches your attention.

  • Write it down on a piece of paper (or note it down digitally)

  • Rewrite the title 5 different times in your own words.
     

Rewrite an Ad: 

This is an improved version of the previous practice.
After rewriting the headline, try writing the body of the ad in your own words.
Give it your spice. One misconception people have about copywriting is that it doesn't allow for creativity.
Sure, it's very different from creative writing, but copywriters can and will only get better when they allow that creativity to flow naturally.
If you are a beginner, I would strongly suggest that you rewrite ads for Facebook or Instagram. They are generally short, making them easy for beginners to read, analyze, and rewrite.
One caveat is whether the Facebook ad is promoting a digital product. I found that their copy is usually longer than the physical products. So if this is your area, I would consider it.
Remember to tell your customers about the benefits of your product. Its features no.
Instead of saying, "This chair has an ergonomic design."
Focus on how your product's features will ease your customer's pain.
“The ergonomic design of our chair will keep your back in optimal position. Say goodbye to that terrible back pain after a long work session.
 

Subscribe to Newsletters: 
 

Email has the highest ROI among all digital marketing channels.That's why writing compelling emails is a must-have in your copywriting toolkit. But how can you practice writing good emails? You can never become a good email copywriter without reading a single email. I'm sure you can see where this is going. Yes, you will have to expose yourself to a lot of emails. Increased exposure equals greater material for analysis.The more exposure you have, the more insight you'll gain. It will enable you to develop your talents more quickly.  So here's how you incorporate this exercise into your daily routine. Create a dummy email account (trust me, you don't want to mix these emails with your personal and work emails, plus this will protect your online privacy) Sign up for every relevant email newsletter in your favorite industry. Read emails from different companies as they arrive in your inbox.The following points should be kept in mind: Are subject lines compelling?

  • How long are the subject lines? (number of words and characters)

  • How long is the main lesson?

  • Does the first sentence of the email relate to and support the subject line? (The first sentence is called the lead)

  • Does it have a CTA?
     

Turn off your ad blocker: 

You've probably been told that the first thing you should do before using the Internet is to turn on your ad blocker.
And yes, it will stop ads appearing on your screen while browsing the web.
However, as someone who wants to improve their copywriting.
Want to limit your exposure to these ads?
It's like wanting tan lines at the beach, but you'd rather stay in your hotel room than go to the beach.
One way to learn to copy "passively" is to read a lot of ads. To improve your copywriting and persuasion skills, you have to consume a ton of it.
But like you, I don't want to share my personal information by clicking on malicious ads. So here is a solution that I found helpful in keeping ads from popping up as well as keeping personal information safe.
 

Start writing on X (formerly Twitter): 

Well, this is by far my favorite way to practice copywriting. A tweet designed to showcase and reward virtually the best copywriters.Let's not talk about the character limit of X Blue, but for non-subscribers, it is 280 characters.

The challenge is trying:

  • hook the reader

  • identify a problem

  • solve that problem

  • call to action
     

Using AI Copywriting Tools Properly: 

The truth is, AI copywriting software is probably a better writer than either of us. So does this mean you don't need to practice? no way.AI is good at following instructions, but it cannot generate emotions like you do because of its domain and personal expertise.Use these tools to give you a foundation and then start making changes. Tailor it to specific products, services, and target audiences to get your creative juices flowing while following different outlines.As an alternative.You work in reverse and use a tool like ChatGPT to correct yourself.
 

How to practice copywriting: 

Now as I mentioned earlier, to get good at this you have to practice writing copy. But to become an expert? It's quality over quantity. Deliberate practice is far more beneficial to your progress than immersion in copywriting.Spending hours practicing copywriting won't cut it. You have to be conscious of how you do your practice.One thing I want to add here is the importance of feedback.Yes, you can focus 100% on practicing your copywriting skills. But especially if you are a newbie, you have no clue whether you are writing a good or bad copy. This is where your network comes in handy. Get a copywriter you know to look over your copies.This copywriter does not necessarily have to be the best in the world. He needs to be better than you.This is more than enough for you to gain some valuable insights. Additionally, you can join copywriting discord communities. This is what I would do if I didn't have copywriters in my current network.

These copywriting exercises hardly require any “special” equipment to get started.
All you need is your phone, an internet connection to browse the web, a few pieces of paper, and a pen to take pictures.
They are simple, so it is:
Easy to integrate into your life.
Low friction so you can do these regularly.
Having stated that I'll go over three free apps I utilize to advance these techniques.

Grammar: Its introduction is necessary, grammar is a staple in the writing process of every writer. This app checks your spelling, grammar, and punctuation, so you can rest assured that your final copy won't look like the first draft.

Hemingway App:  The Hemingway App is my favorite for assessing the conciseness and clarity of my message. Which are important for every copywriter. The writing is ranked according to the grade level needed to read your material. I would always aim for 5th grade or below. But, of course, this will always depend on your target audience. If your target readers are more academically inclined than an average person, you can get away with the grade 8 or 9 level.
CoSchedule Headline Analyst: This free writing tool helps me analyze the efficiency of my headlines. Remember, you only have one-second chance to make a good first impression.

 

Can copywriting be learned

Study copywriting examples: The best way to learn copywriting is to analyze successful advertisements and marketing campaigns. When you look at ads and copies, you learn why they are successful, how they are written, how they use emotions, and many more things.

What is copywriting and how to do it

The goal of copywriting, as a method of content creation, is to persuade the reader to do something. To generate conversions and sales, the copywriter must write the "copy" (content), thinking about its persuasive character, and using triggers to arouse interest in the reader.

Where is copywriting used

Copywriters help create scripts, taglines, white papers, website and social media posts, and other marketing communications for billboards, brochures, catalogs, jingle songs, magazine, and newspaper advertisements, sales letters, and other direct mail, television or radio commercials.

Can you make 10k a month copywriting

It's not only possible but likely if you follow some specific steps to grow your copywriting business to five figures per month. [4:00] If you track your time very closely for a week or two, you'll find areas where you're not accounting for your time and missing out on billable hours

Why is copywriting illegal

Here's what you need to know: Copyright Infringement: Copywriting is generally protected by copyright laws. Using someone else's work without consent is a violation of these laws. Legal action, including lawsuits and heavy financial fines, may result from this.

What is copywriting on YouTu

When it comes to the importance of copywriting, YouTube probably isn't the first platform that comes to mind. However, there are two essential areas of a YouTube video where copywriting comes in handy – the title and description, and the video script.

Which degree is good for copywriting

To start a career as a copywriter, you need a bachelor's degree in marketing, communications, or English. Within these programs of study, you will learn and develop skills in research, writing, editing, and audience awareness, which are essential for success as a copywriter.
 

Where to start copywriting

Work with an agency: If you want to learn how to copywrite, working with an agency is a great place to start. You connect with a marketing agency (sending an LOI is a great way to do this), and they send clients your way. The big positive is that you don't have to constantly be looking for new customers.
 

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