Sometimes marketing campaigns can charm my socks off. The right strategy—like Hipmunk’s “agony” ratings to describe red-eye flights, or CD Baby’s low-key tone—will lure consumers into lifelong brand loyalty. That’s the power of solid copywriting.
These five sites top my list of copywriting inspiration. Every one of them gets copywriting right, either because they make mundane tasks more interesting, because they’re sure to bring a smile to your face, or because they’re gloriously simple. All of them nail the real key to successful marketing: tailoring content to fit the right audience.
So here it is—inspiration from a few ingenious professionals who got it right.
Take a mindful stroll through Mozilla’s homepage. They keep their material short, sweet, and professional. The headline—”We are Mozilla”—captures your attention. The use of first-person plural identifies Mozilla as a team. And that attention-grabber leads directly into three key ways Mozilla differentiates themselves from the competition.
Steal their style: Clean up your homepage for a focused, un-cluttered effect. Mozilla realizes they only have to use a few words to make their point. You can probably do the same.
Hipmunk offers everything that the other top travel comparison sites do, but with a twist. It’s quickly becoming my favorite, if only because of its spunky copywriting (and a very perky chipmunk mascot). Hipmunk allows you to sort flights by “agony” (flight length and number of layovers), among other factors. “Spite” comes with the subheading “Is your boss making you angry? Make ’em suffer!” and lists the most luxurious options available.
Steal their style: Be real. Hipmunk’s clever tags reflect the way people actually feel about flights, and they speak directly to their audience. Don’t be afraid to shoot for a more casual, honest tone in your website’s copy—and deal with customers’ real concerns.
You’ll either love or hate their pun-filled writing style, but Modcloth’s product descriptions cater to a certain audience—and it works. With titles like “Taking the Scenic Route Top” and “Into the Flamenco Skirt,” this trendy clothier tells a story through each title and product description.
Steal their style: Tell a story. Modcloth succeeds by telling customers what their lives could be like if they were wearing [fill-in-the-blank] garment. Work with your online copywriter to nail the right storytelling tone for your product or service.
CD Baby’s website is clear, concise, and easy to navigate. But the place their copywriting really stands out is in their email campaigns. Here’s an excerpt:
Greetings From CD Baby’s Digital Gnomes!
We’re the clan of e-Gnomes that prepare the MP3s you purchased. All of us, the e-Gnome parents and the e-Gnome children and even some of the older ‘Analog’ Gnomes, came out to watch as your digital download was prepared. Bit rates were carefully calibrated, wave-lengths measured, and electrons spit-shined with the hems of our smocks. It was so exciting that poor Pixel Gnome had to reboot!
Steal their style: Don’t be afraid to go a bit quirky. If CD Baby’s entire website was talking about gnomes, it might get annoying. But as a confirmation email, it’s a clever, fun way to make a memorable impression.
Steffani J is a freelance writer available on WriterAccess, a marketplace where clients and expert writers connect for assignments.