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According to Hubspot, copywriting is “one of the most critical elements of all forms of marketing and advertising. It is made up of the words, either written or spoken, that marketers use to try to get people to do something after reading it or hearing it. ”
Good copywriting, especially in long form (think longer sales pages and emails), is a delicate ballet that combines both art and science.
The first part of the process – research – is data driven (you know, algorithms, keywords, conversions, etc. – all marketing stuff). Some copywriters also go further with the scientific approach with formulas and scripts.
On the other hand, the art is the dance – the flow of descriptive words so creatively written to get the reader to take a particular action.
But like so many other areas, copywriting is also subject to massive change. Everyone is talking about it: machine learning and artificial intelligence emerge and streamline processes. Given these recent advances, many authors ask, "Are my days numbered?"
Related: 27 Best Text Writing Formulas: How to Tell a Captivating Story Online
Let's look at a creative example
Imagine yourself in a Tesla-like spaceship, whizzing through the cityscape Coruscant between towering skyscrapers. Lasers sweep past you. In the distance, galaxies millions of light years away are indistinct.
Anakin Skywalker sits in the pilot's seat, his hands clutching the steering wheel, determined to avoid the flying monkeys of the evil Doofus droid army locking onto your spaceship.
Your mission is to take back the almighty lightsaber called WMP and ultimately restore freedom to the galaxy.
You just fall for what feels like an eternity. After hitting the floor, try to dust yourself off but quickly find that your hands and feet are cuffed.
You look around and …
Can evil robots write effective texts?
In a world of automation where the push of a button triggers a series of actions performed by machines that do most of the work for you, it's inevitable: droids keep getting smarter and eventually produce creative work.
Will they be effective? Only time can tell.
But no worry.
Although the Doofus Droid Army can reproduce formulaic sales text based on parameters, preset limits, and raw data, there is one key element it cannot replicate: being human.
Related: Texting can be a very lucrative sideline
Weapons of mass persuasion
You see, in addition to art and science, master copywriters know when to use psychology to pull emotional levers to connect with their audience. I like to call this Trifecta “WMP”, also known as Weapons of Mass Persuasion. Let's analyze each psychological trigger using our creative example.
Use mystery and curiosity. George Lowenstein, a psychology and economics professor, found that triggering a high level of curiosity is violating proper expectations, tickling the information gap, and knowing when to stop. In the creative scene, the author (I) creates mystery and curiosity by placing the reader (you) in the middle of a chaotic space chase. This scene goes against some of your typical expectations for an article of this type. Curiosity then creates an information gap; You want to read on to determine the relationship with the goal of the article. Eventually, it leaves you hanging … just enough to keep you captivated, but not for too long for your curiosity to wear off.
Create a common enemy. Using the word "evil" to describe the Doofus Droid Army creates two collective identities: good and bad. In psychology, this is known as social identity theory – “Us versus them” mentality that stems from our evolutionary need to belong to a group. Research says collectives thrive in the presence of a common enemy. This creates a strong connection between the reader and the characters and, more importantly, the mission of the collective.
To tell a story. We have been prepared to hear stories since we were children. We long for unforgettable, tense stories like Toy story. They help us create experiences as if they were real and generate behavioral responses. Here's a pro tip: use a second person perspective, which implies that the reader is the protagonist in the story and that the events are happening to him or her. There can be a unique and powerful perspective. The creative scene creates a fascinating parallel world through tension and action in which you are the hero on your journey to defeat the robot tyrants.
If you employ these psychological triggers and write with your creativity, skills, and compelling personality, there is no AI or machine learning in this galaxy to replicate your work. Because well … only you can be yourself, and a computer cannot tap into the interactions and life experiences that you convey in your writing.
May the Force be with you, Jedi Master.
Related: The 10 Commandments of Great Copywriting