Crafting effective advertising copy is a crucial skill for any marketing campaign. The right ad copy can draw your audience in, compelling them to act, whether that’s making a purchase, signing up for a newsletter, or simply learning more about your brand. However, getting it right requires more than just a knack for words. Using a New Zealand audience as our example, this guide will walk you through crafting compelling, action-oriented ad copy that resonates with your audience.
1. Understand your Audience
Every successful advertising campaign begins with a deep understanding of its target audience. In New Zealand, this involves understanding Kiwis as a people—their values, attitudes, behaviours, and the things they hold dear. But it’s not just about targeting New Zealanders; you must segment your audience into specific groups based on age, location, interests, and consumer behaviour.
Let’s take a practical example. Suppose you’re launching an advertising campaign for a new brand of sunscreen. In New Zealand, sun safety awareness is high due to the country’s high UV levels and skin cancer rates. Therefore, your target audience could be outdoor enthusiasts, beachgoers, and health-conscious individuals.
Understanding these key audience traits will guide your ad copy’s language, tone, and messaging. It will ensure that your ad resonates with the people you’re trying to reach, increasing its likelihood of success.
2. Show How You’ll Solve Their Problem
The foundation of compelling ad copy is understanding your audience’s challenges and how your product or service will solve them. In the realm of advertising, this is often referred to as the ‘value proposition’. It’s about making your offer so compelling that potential customers cannot ignore it.
New Zealanders, like people everywhere, appreciate simplicity and practicality. They are likely to respond well to ad copy that is clear, straightforward, and speaks directly to their needs.
For instance, consider that you’re promoting a professional gardening service. Your target audience might be homeowners who need more time or energy to maintain their gardens. A potential headline for your ad could be: “Say Goodbye to Weekend Weeding—Enjoy a Beautiful Garden without the Hard Yakka!” This headline clearly communicates the problem (weekend weeding) and the solution (a professional gardening service).
3. Incorporate Emotional Triggers
Emotions are powerful drivers of human behaviour, including consumer behaviour. Incorporating emotional triggers into your ad copy can therefore be highly effective. This involves language and imagery eliciting specific emotional responses, such as joy, fear, surprise, or a sense of belonging.
For New Zealand audiences, certain cultural concepts carry strong emotional weight. These include ‘whanau’ (the Maori word for extended family), ‘manaakitanga’ (hospitality), and ‘kaitiakitanga’ (guardianship or protection). Incorporating these concepts into your ad copy can create a deep emotional connection with your audience.
For example, if you’re promoting an eco-friendly product, the concept of ‘kaitiakitanga’ is highly relevant. An ad could read: “Honour the Kiwi Spirit of ‘Kaitiakitanga’ with Our 100% Recyclable Products.” This ad copy showcases the product’s eco-friendly nature and appeals to the Kiwis’ sense of guardianship towards the environment.
4. Highlight the Benefits, Not Just the Features
Another crucial part of writing the body of your ad is to focus on benefits, not features. A common mistake in advertising is focusing too much on a product’s features rather than its benefits. Instead of talking about how amazing your brand is, get visitors to take action by telling them how your brand or product will improve their lives.
Consider a Kiwi business selling organic skincare products. The target audience might be individuals who are conscious of their skin health and the environment and are looking for natural, cruelty-free skincare options.
Here’s an example of how the ad copy might read:
- Problem: You’re tired of using skincare products full of harsh chemicals that are cruel to animals and damaging to the environment.
- Promise: Our organic, cruelty-free skincare line is made from 100% natural ingredients, lovingly crafted to nourish your skin and the environment.
- Ad copy: “Struggling to find skincare that’s as kind to the earth as it is to your skin? At Kiwi Organics, we believe in beauty without cruelty. Our organic, cruelty-free skincare line is made with 100% natural ingredients sourced sustainably right here in Aotearoa. Nourish your skin with the natural goodness of our products, and join us in our commitment to a healthier planet. Make the switch today, and feel the difference of truly natural skincare.”
This ad copy speaks directly to the identified problem, promises a solution, and uses emotional triggers such as concern for animal welfare and the environment. It also highlights the benefits of using natural and sustainable skincare product, which is better for the skin and the environment.
5. Address a Specific Problem
Another effective strategy for crafting compelling ad copy is to identify a problem that your potential customers are experiencing and then offer a solution. This problem-solution approach can be very persuasive because it shows that you understand your customer’s unique needs and have a way to meet them. This makes them feel seen, important and validated.
For instance, an ad for a local gym in Auckland might identify a common problem of busy city life: lack of time for fitness. The ad could then promise a solution: flexible gym hours and various quick, high-intensity classes. The ad copy might look something like this: “Too busy for fitness? We’ve got you covered. With our flexible hours and 30-minute high-intensity classes, you’ll be smashing your fitness goals in no time!” By addressing a specific problem and offering a clear solution, this ad copy is likely to capture the attention of busy Aucklanders looking for a flexible fitness solution.
6. Add a Touch of Local Flavour
Language is a powerful tool for connecting with your audience. When writing ad copy for a New Zealand audience, using New Zealand English can make your message more relatable and engaging. This might involve using Kiwi slang, Maori words, or references to local events or cultural nuances.
When you’re writing for a New Zealand audience, don’t forget to add a touch of Kiwi. For instance, if you’re advertising a sale at a shoe store, your ad copy could read: “Sweet As! Score a Bargain at Our Massive Shoe Sale and Put Some New ‘Jandals’ on Your ‘Plates of Meat’!” This ad copy is infused with local language that will resonate with New Zealanders, making it more effective than a generic ad.
7. Craft a Compelling Call to Action (CTA)
The CTA is arguably the most crucial part of your ad copy. The final nudge encourages your audience to take action, whether it’s to visit your website, make a purchase, or sign up for a newsletter. A good CTA should be clear, concise, and compelling.
For example, if you’re running an online clothing store, your CTA might be: “Discover your new favourite outfit—shop now!”
By following these steps and tailoring your approach to your New Zealand audience, you can craft ad copy that attracts attention and fosters a genuine connection with your audience. Remember, successful ad copy is about more than just making a sale; it’s about creating a meaningful dialogue with your audience.
Pulling It All Together
Crafting effective ad copy requires a nuanced understanding of your audience, a focus on problem-solving, an appeal to emotions, an emphasis on benefits over features, a touch of local flavour and a great call to action. By incorporating these elements, you can create compelling ad copy that resonates with New Zealand audiences and drives them to action.
As a practical example, let’s say you’re advertising a locally-made artisanal cheese brand in New Zealand. To wrap up, here’s an example of how an ad might read after following all the steps:
“Love a good ‘tucker’? Tired of the same old supermarket ‘grub’? Discover the taste of real Kiwi ‘kai’ with our handcrafted artisanal cheeses. Made right here in Aotearoa, our cheese honours the Kiwi tradition of ‘manaakitanga’, making any meal a feast to share with ‘whanau’. Plus, we’re all about ‘kaitiakitanga’. Our cheese is made from the milk of grass-fed cows, and we use eco-friendly packaging. So, you can enjoy delicious cheese and care for our beautiful ‘whenua’ at the same time. Taste the difference and add some Kiwi ‘flavour’ to your next meal. ‘Choice, bro!'”
Whether selling locally-made cheese, offering services or promoting an event, compelling ad copy can be the difference between a campaign that flops and one that flies. So, apply these insights to your next ad campaign and watch as your engagement and conversion rates soar. Kia ora, and good luck with your ad copywriting!
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