For the past three nights, I haven’t been able to fall asleep.
(Sleeping is one of my best talents, so this is highly unusual.)
And as I’m laying there, I end up doing the exact opposite of what you’re supposed to be doing when you can’t fall asleep:
I start scrolling through Instagram.
(I know, I know… I’m only human!)
But last night, as I was scrolling, I started to pay attention to which captions I clicked to read.
And I realized something…
There is one very crucial skill that I see many new fashion brands lacking.
And that’s the ability to write compelling sales copy.
If you’re not familiar with the term “copy” it refers to any text you write to represent your brand.
In other words, your emails to your list, subject lines, blog titles, any “call to action,” Instagram captions, blog posts, the “About” page of your website, the product descriptions on your shop pages, your social media bios, etc.
To be honest, if you asked me why some fashion brands are successful and others aren’t, I would boil it down to two main marketing components:
#1 Great product photography
#2 Great sales copy
And it’s #2 that I want to talk about today, because I think this skill is detrimentally overlooked by startup fashion brands.
To be able to sell *anything* online, you need to be a strong writer.
Before you throw your hands up in the air and tell me, “It’s just something you’ve never been good at!” hear me out:
I’m not talking about the type of writing you learned in high school English class.
The writing skills that are required for the internet are far more attainable than learning how to construct a 42-page essay analyzing Jane Eyre.
(Bleh, aren’t you glad those days are over?)
To write compelling sales copy, it simply requires you to write how you talk.
Back in high school, Mrs. Sullivan would have called this “the vernacular.”
That’s where I want you to start.
I want you to write in a way that’s conversational.
And as with anything you practice over and over, you’re going to get incrementally better at it.
Even if you think you “can’t write.”
But here’s what I would not recommend:
Hiring someone to write your copy for you.
(Unless you have endless amounts of money that you can pay this person for as long as your brand exists… and who really has that?)
Copywriting is a “teach a woman to fish” type of situation.
You really and truly do not want to rely on someone else to be the voice of your brand when you’re just starting out.
Sure, if you reach $1M in revenue, then go ahead and hire a marketing team — but in the beginning, your brand is relying on you to hone your chops at writing.
There are courses out there to teach you how to improve (CopyHour is run by my friend Derek and Marie Forleo has a program called The Copy Cure.)
There is also plenty of free content if you google, “How to become a better copywriter.”
But the bottom line is this:
You need to be able to effectively communicate what your brand has to offer.
That requires you to be clear, genuine, persuasive and most of all, compelling.
Because if you aren’t, then you’re going to train your followers (i.e. potential customers!) that your words aren’t worth reading.
And if your words aren’t worth reading, then how will they know that your products are worth wearing?