Catalog Copy Is Still About Benefits – No Matter How Short and Sweet

by Sarah on September 19, 2010

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When you’re busy trying to communicate how great your product is in the smallest space possible, it’s easy to get stuck on features and lose sight of benefits.

The worst mistake a catalog marketer can make.

Despite their size, catalog copy entries still require the same elements of any good sales letter to do the most work: An eye-stopping headline, clearly stated benefits and a persuasive argument. But you have to do this in just a few sentences – so it takes some skill to do it right.

And bottomline a catalog still has to be written for the prospect, not from the company. In other words, to write the best copy for a catalog you have to hone in on what a customer might want a product for, what will capture their interest – not necessarily what got your R&D department all excited.

For example, you could have a great summary of how your whey protein is filtered, its protein content vs. calorie count, etc. But if you don’t start off with a headline that tells your prospect, “XX Whey Protein Turns Your Breakfast Into a Powerful Start For the Morning” and follow up with a line about how it can transform an ordinary bowl of oatmeal or a smoothie into a meal that allows them to take the day by storm, you’ve lost an opportunity to tell your prospect what this can do for them.

And you also can bolster your catalog’s performance with some other additions:

  • Provide an opening letter from the company president or noted expert that immediately builds your catalog’s credibility and starts a person-to-person relationship with your prospects.
  • Use testimonials and case studies throughout to create interest and show your customers how people just like them are enjoying the benefits of your products.
  • Provide other useful information. As an avid gardener, I use good seed catalogs as a great reference source. Integrate snippets, quotes, articles and more to make your catalog quality reading material that might not get shelved so quickly.
  • Connect it to the web. A large percentage of internet shoppers start with a hard copy catalog. Find ways to facilitate this connection by making sure your online landing pages coordinate with your catalog and offer additional resources and information online. Hint: Many supplement companies have created web sites to provide more in depth information about research that supports the use of their products than the FDA allows in immediate sales copy.

Contact me at¬†sarah@healthymarketingideas.com to discuss how your catalog copy can tap right into your prospect’s interests – succinctly.

And get a copy of my free report, “17 Healthy Copywriting¬†Tactics for a Tough Economy”

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