Writing copy can be an absolute beast, especially when it’s not your specialty. Although writing a few blurbs may seem easy, copywriting comes with unique challenges. The work needs to be punchy and direct, effective at communicating your brand and services, establishing trust, and converting to sales in a limited space.
Here’s what you need to ask yourself to write your copy for selling WordPress maintenance services:
Who is my audience?
This may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised. It’s similar to the business you’re already running: you can aim for every target, investing your energy in every single lead, or you can narrow your focus, aiming for who you want to work with (and who is best suited for your services).
Most WordPress developers already have niches they focus on in terms of technical offerings, like eCommerce, custom plugin development, front-end development and design, or theme building. Many also have specific client niches, where they focus on a specific industry (food and restaurants; medical tech; journalism, etc.) and hone their expertise in the needs of the clients who work in that specific space.
You need to do the same evaluation when it comes to your WordPress maintenance services. Who in your client base is going to be a good fit for your services?
It’s likely you’ll find that you already have a divide in your head regarding which clients will be interested in ongoing services. What makes them different from the others? Who are they? How do they speak when communicating with you? Who are you usually speaking with–is it the owner of a company? A one person shop? A C-level officer? An internal developer?
All of these things will make an impact on the approach and tone of your copy. While you should treat everyone kindly (of course!), a CEO of a mid to large sized company is going to have a different mindset than someone running a one person shop. They have different concerns, different time demands, disparate resources available to them, and varying abilities to delegate.
For example, you know you work primarily with small shops, the person you’re working with runs everything themselves. That means they’re likely short on both time and patience, which means you want your copy to get straight to the point–no fancy verbiage, no overly complicated steps to get the information they need.
You’re also likely to develop a more informal relationship with them, since you’re working with them one on one and they’re probably not running a highly corporate operation solo. That means you want your copy to feel personal–like it’s a conversation between you and them–which means that while it should still remain professional, it will also have a touch of informality to it, a casualness. You might find your communications looking more like, “Hi!” instead of, “Greetings,” or “Dear So-and-So,” which should be reflected in your copy as well.
How do I want to make my clients feel?
This may seem like a woo-woo, silly question, but bear with us here.
I know that after reading Eat24’s Twitter, for example, I feel amused and a little hungry. Their sense of humor (and generosity with the coupon codes) makes me want to interact with them. After looking at Zenni Optical’s site, I feel at ease. Their straightforwardness and the welcoming tone they take with their copy makes me feel like they have a product that is accessible to me–both in terms of finding what I like, as well as being able to afford it.
If this question seems a little out of touch for you, I recommend poking around to a few brands you visit on a regular basis. How do they make you feel? If you can, pinpoint what it is that makes you feel that way. Jot down a few adjectives that describe their tone, and try to pinpoint what you read that gave you that impression.
While you’ll have to get more specific depending on your specific client base, it’s reasonable to say that most developers want their clients to feel comfortable about handing their site over, confident in the developer’s technical competency, and informed about what to expect.
How do these feelings translate to copy?
Let’s break it down.
To make someone feel comfortable, the copy needs to be self-assured, open, and welcoming. It also needs to demonstrate that you’re open to answering questions, as well as prepared to address common questions quickly and upfront (a FAQ comes in handy here!).
To make someone feel confident in your competency, you need to not only demonstrate your basic capabilities with small things (like communicating in a timely and efficient manner, addressing questions and concerns quickly), but also make sure your copy uses correct (but accessible!) terminology and links to resources backing up your work (like a portfolio or customer testimonials).
To make someone feel informed, your copy needs to be clear and concise, as well as address all of the obvious questions, which leads us to our next section.
What do your clients need to know?
You’ve already structured your pricing, so you can use that as a baseline for the details of what you’re going to provide.
Here are things your customers will be looking for at first glance:
How much does it cost?
While some folks don’t post any of their service pricing online, we encourage you to be transparent about the basic plans, at the very least. Give people a price point to start with, so they know whether or not you’re a good fit for their budget. It immediately rules people who can’t afford you out, making your vetting process start before they even get in touch.
For folks who are seeking more extensive services and have a larger budget, you can set up your pricing page to sell the benefits of a customized premium maintenance plan and encourage them to reach out to you for a consultation. From there, you can do the sales work and vet them over the phone.
How does it work?
This kind of question is best answered with a one or two sentence (max!) explanation with a link to a blog post, another page that specifically details process, or an FAQ with more information. Keep it short and straightforward on the homepage–remember, you have more places to put extra information. You don’t have to detail it all out right up front, which can convolute and complicate your copy.
Who is offering this (and are they reliable and trustworthy)?
You probably already have this set up, but: you need an about page that shares your background and experience. It will outline your experience and help develop credibility. Don’t forget to add a personal touch; people want to know who they’re working with.
What do I need to do to make this happen?
You need to tell your clients where to go and what they need to be prepared. For Staging Pilot, we created an email course to help people get prepared for signing up. You can do something similar, and create a how-to for compiling what kind of information you need from your clients to get set up.
Where can I ask questions?
Make that contact page easy to find!
How do I get started?
Make the starting point for signing up for your services super straightforward, with a call to action.
Your copy needs to answer these questions in a short, sweet, and appealing way. They need to answer the right questions while connecting with your audience.
Try out a few different styles and poll people you know (especially people who aren’t as technically savvy as you) for honest feedback. What makes them feel at home? Are there parts that leave them confused? Put that Facebook friend list to work and find out what you need to tweak.
You’ve got this. Now start writing.