Do you forget the most important thing?

One of my favorite bloggers is copyblogger.  In one of his recent posts, he wrote something that all of us who sell things, whether it be services or products, should think about.

“You need to tell your reader exactly what to do, how to do it, and that you want her to do it right now.

Make it specific

The late copywriting master Gary Halbert liked to include seemingly insane levels of detail in his calls to action.

His copy would end with something like, “Call (specific 800 number). You’ll talk with a woman named Robin in a blue sweater who will ask you, Would you like the large size or the jumbo?. Tell her you want the jumbo. She’ll ask you for your mailing address where you can receive packages, and you’ll give it to her.” He goes on and on like that for quite some time.

For the beginning copywriter, it feels like a strange, awkward technique that’s going to “look weird.” But for the reader, in the context of taking action that might cost some money, time or inconvenience, this level of detail creates a solid, comfortable understanding of what to do next and what to expect.

If you want your reader to take action, use highly specific language with clear, concrete details. Don’t leave any question about what you want to see happen. And don’t be afraid to be a little “too obvious.”

He said a lot more in that post, too.  You should read it if you write copy for your website, articles, or anything else.  You’ll find it at

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