You might not see white label ebooks every day on the latest content marketing sites, but that doesn’t mean they are irrelevant. In fact, ebooks are still a powerful marketing tool that any business, regardless of industry, should be utilizing in their marketing strategy. If your company is not using an ebook, you are missing out on the opportunity to educate and retain potential customers and position yourself as an authority.
Hubspot Uses Ebooks – and Savvy about it Too
Take Hubspot, for example. They publish ebooks throughout the year and put them on their site. “State of Marketing 2023,” is a popular one that they release annually, telling you what’s new, what’s trending, and what they see in the future. Yes, these are all free, but that doesn’t mean Hubspot is not gaining something from using them.
To download the ebook, you must give Hubspot your email.
Once they have your email, you are part of their marketing funnel. You will get email marketing campaigns, some of which you might click on or even act on. All for a free download.
What is a White Label Ebook?
Hubspot creates its ebooks in-house, but that doesn’t mean you have to. Hubspot is a major corporation with the means to hire in-house writers to tackle the research and writing of their ebooks.
You are more likely to benefit from a white label ebook for your business than trying to hire an in-house writer.
Ebooks as “white label,” are ebooks written by a third party, such as a writing agency you have hired, but published under your company’s name or even your name. You are the author. You didn’t research or write it, but you get all of the credit.
By no means is this misleading.
You are a busy business owner and need to outsource things like content creation – including ebooks – to help your content marketing strategy and build your business. With these white label services, you get the expertise of a writer in your niche that can research, create, and edit – with some companies, like here at Express Writers, you can even get the book designed so it is ready to publish the moment you get it.
You are a busy business owner and need to outsource things like content creation – including ebooks – to help your content marketing strategy and build your business. With these white label services, you get the expertise of a writer in your niche that can research, create, and edit – with some companies, like here at Express Writers, you can even get the book designed so it is ready to publish the moment you get it.
A Quick Note on White Label Ebooks and AI
AI is here, and it is writing content for a lot of businesses. However, we’d like to share a little caution when it comes to using AI to create an ebook – whether it is 4 pages or 40 pages.
AI is NOT creative. It is not original. Yes, sure, your ebook might pass on Copyscape as “original” copy, but the reality is that your copy was generated by stringing together phrases and keywords already on the web – meaning content written by someone else already out there. So, your ebook is not white label if you opt for AI as your means to creating it.
The only way to protect your brand and ensure you have a genuine, white label ebook is to hire a writer and have them create that ebook from scratch using their words, their research, and of course, your branding.
The Benefits of Purchasing White Label Ebooks on a Platform Like EW
At Express Writers, we understand the importance of a worthwhile ebook. In return, you want to flex your knowledge and gain something from your ebook. If you’re on the fence about outsourcing, let us discuss with you a few reasons customers purchase ebooks from our team rather than turning to a content mill or even AI.
You Build Credibility and Authority with Your Audience
Yes, long-form blog posts, such as our Authority blogs, help build your authority (an important part of E-E-A-T), but ebooks can do it even faster and better. After all, no one wants to read a 10,000-word blog, but they will read a 10,000-word ebook.
Ebooks are the epitome of long-form content that help establish your brand’s credibility and authority in a single piece of content. You can share case study information, in-house statistics, and even more in-depth information about the products or services your company offers. It doesn’t matter if your target audience is a consumer or another business – ebooks build credibility all the same.
Inexpensive Compared to the Return on Your Investment
The return on your investment with an ebook is well worth it. Not only can you use ebooks as a gateway to capture emails and expand your potential customer pool, but it only costs a few hundred dollars for you to unlock leads that are actually interested in you. A single ebook locked behind providing an email address could give you hundreds of potential customers all for a few hundred you spent writing that one ebook.
Purchasing leads will never generate results like that.
White label ebooks are digital; therefore, you don’t have to find a publisher or even worry about going through the demands of a digital publisher. Instead, you have a download-ready ebook you can put on your website, link in social media, create a landing page for, etc. Distribution is only limited by what you are willing to do to market the ebook.
Likewise, your readers can access and download the content on any device – computer, phone, tablet, and more.
Use Your Ebook as a Guide to Educate Even Further
You can use an ebook as a “guide” to help your readers better understand your products or services. It works in any niche. For example, you sell custom resin pen blanks (quite the niche, right?). Well, in your ebook you can discuss not only how to create the pen blanks, but how to use them properly and turn them into pens using everything from the right lathe to the best polishing compounds. You are educating customers on your product’s production process and then educating them further by showing them how to get the most out of their purchase.
How to Get the Most out of Your White Label Ebooks
An ebook can sell products or services, capture email addresses, and build your authority, but it has to be done right.
At Express Writers, we only hire the best writers in their industry to help us ensure our clients get the best content. Writers that work on ebooks for our clients are subject matter experts. That means that they have five or more years of professional writing experience in your specific niche, and, often, have an advanced degree within that niche.
You have a true expert writing your content, and if you opt for design, you can get a fully branded ebook ready to distribute however you like once the project is done.
Ready to Take Advantage of a White Label Ebook Platform?
At Express Writers, we have a team of SME writers ready to tackle your next white label ebook. Our ebooks start at $112 per page, but we can also provide you with a custom cart for larger ebook orders.
Whether you are a small business just getting started or have been dabbling in SEO for a while, one term you might have come across is “content strategy.” Still, the content calendar is the more important and often unspoken strategy you need to know.
What is a content calendar, and what makes it the key to unlocking your best strategy results? Is it just adding blog titles to a calendar on Google and remembering to post them on time?
Well, yes, but also no.
A content calendar is a key that unlocks that door to limitless possibilities for your content. From boosting social media interaction to improving your blog’s readability and call-to-action performance, you need to know how to build a content calendar that takes you to the top.
Top of your industry, niche, and most importantly, the SERPs.
Yes, a content calendar can help you get there – if you are creating the right type of content calendar.
How to Create a Content Calendar No No’s – Hint, You Don’t Add Titles to Google Calendar
While titles and a strategic plan for posting your content are part of the secret sauce that goes into a content calendar, it is far from the final ingredient.
A content calendar builds out a title, but also sprinkles in focus keywords, information to include, links to use, and photo ideas, and then picks strategic dates to post. Most importantly, a content calendar is not limited to blogs. More companies are using content calendars for social media too – after all, aren’t social media posts essential pieces of content?
A content calendar can also help you plan out your website content. You don’t have to write it all at once, and you can strategically release web page content while you release blogs or corresponding social media posts to help bring it all together.
According to one survey, 64% of successful companies have a content strategy with a content calendar. That’s a big piece of the pie that you’re missing out on if you are not also utilizing similar tools in your strategy.
What are the Benefits of a Content Calendar?
Content calendars make planning your content and writing content more manageable. You can improve team collaboration, boost productivity, and organize yourself for a more competitive edge.
Calendars Help You Visualize the Strategy as a Whole
It does not matter how big your content creation team is, whether it is just you or you have a few members helping, it is easy to get lost in the creation process if you don’t know what a priority is and have an accurate bird’s eye view of your content coming up.
With a content calendar, you can plan out your blog posts, social media posts, and even YouTube community posts, all ahead of time – whether monthly or weekly, depending on the demands of your niche.
For example, you run a YouTube channel with a blog. You typically post a single video per week, then a corresponding blog post with it to summarize for the audience. Producing a single YouTube video with a blog, then promoting both, requires a few steps. You not only need to write a script for your video, but line up editing (or secure time in your calendar to edit), create a thumbnail, prepare the description, write up the blog post, capture still images for your blog from the video recording, and publish social media posts to promote your latest video and blog release. Those are a lot of steps to get done, and nothing you want to rush. By knowing what content is coming up for the next week, you can work on outsourcing what you need while staying ahead of the calendar.
You Become More Predictable for Your Readers and Consistent in Quality
When organized, your content no longer appears scrambled or haphazardly put together. You are posting regularly, on schedule, which also gives your readers, followers, or viewers more predictability. If they know that you release a new podcast every Friday or a new blog upload on Mondays, they will wait for an alert to catch it.
Saves You Time and Energy
When your content creation is moving along like a well-oiled machine, you save time and energy that you can spend elsewhere on your business. Think about it – if you are working a week ahead, having next week’s blog already in production and a team working on next month’s social media posts, you can focus your time on growth, look for new opportunities, and not worry about finding time to squeeze in your content creation.
Even if you are trying to do the creation yourself, you now have a plan laid out. You know when the final product is due, and what steps you need to complete to finish it, and you can plan ahead.
Keyword Research – You should always center your ideas around keyword opportunities. Today, the SERPs are incredibly competitive, so you need to look for high-volume keywords, but low-competition and still worthwhile to use in your content to grab the attention of potential searchers. Doing keyword research around your niche will help you generate ideas for your content calendar.
Research What’s Trending – Following trends in your niche is critical. It doesn’t matter if you are a local dog groomer or big SaaS corporation, you need to know what is trending in your industry and follow along. Tools such as BuzzSumo can help you see what is trending in your niche.
Come Up with Content Titles/Topics/Ideas – After creating a list of keyword opportunities for your business, now comes the time to generate your ideas. Whether it is creating a web page to fulfill a keyword opportunity, adding some blogs, or even creating videos that will rank in search results for a particular keyword.
Consider Special Dates – Every company will have special occasions to post content as well, such as new product launches, company milestones, seasonality, and more. These should be added into your evergreen content.
Add All of Your Content Components – Now that you have keywords and topic ideas, you need to create a list of assets that you need to finish each “content” item. For example, with a blog post, you will need the blog’s content and corresponding images. You might also want social media posts to help promote your latest blog. So, you will need to add into your calendar the blog title, images to include, and how many social media posts and which platforms they are for. Then, schedule everything out so that all assets are ready to go from you or wherever you outsource in time for your publishing date.
Come Up with a Schedule that Works – You need a realistic publishing schedule that you can stick with consistently. Many companies assume they can publish several times per week only to realize that it is hard to keep up as business picks up with it.
Need Help Creating a Content Calendar?
At Express Writers, we know that a content calendar is one of your more powerful strategy tools. That is why we have our editorial calendar service. With this strategy service, one of our in-house content strategists will research your niche, see what is trending, search for keyword opportunities, and help create a full calendar that outlines everything from blogs to web pages or even social media posts.
At Express Writers, we embrace content calendars and use them for our blog, social media, and more. Having a plan has kept our team on point, everyone knows what part they play each month in delivering our content, and it frees up our team to focus on other tasks at hand – like delivering exceptional content to our clients!
The digital marketing funnel is a visualization of the stages your prospects go through before they eventually become your customers. While many businesses focus most of their energy on the beginning and end of the funnel, the middle needs just as much attention.
Middle-of-the-funnel content marketing is critical to increasing conversion rates and giving your potential customers an informative, seamless journey through your marketing funnel.
In this article, we will share some crucial advice on how to improve your MOFU marketing along with successful examples of this type of content.
What Is Middle of the Funnel Content Marketing
The marketing funnel is a tool businesses use to gain insights into the buyer’s journey. It is typically divided into three parts: top of the funnel (TOFU), middle of the funnel (MOFU), and bottom of the funnel (BOFU).
While many prospects follow the traditional route of going through each marketing stage in order, customers today can come into the funnel at any stage and in any order. You could even encounter an impulsive buyer who heads to the bottom of the funnel without spending much, if any time, at the top or in the middle.
Top of the Funnel
The top of the funnel is where you first introduce potential customers to your brand. The goal of TOFU content is to attract new people to your website. It typically includes blogs, paid ads, podcasts, and social media. Users interact with your content because it solves a problem for them. If they don’t like what they find or your products and services won’t solve their problem, they may leave the funnel at this point.
Middle of the Funnel
Prospects still interested in your brand move on the middle of the funnel. In this stage, users are considering whether your business will fully meet their needs. MOFU content typically includes checklists, surveys, and educational resources. At this stage, you are trying to convince prospects that your products and services will solve their problem. More prospects will leave the funnel at this stage.
Bottom of the Funnel
At the bottom of the marketing funnel, also called the decision stage, prospects are deciding if they want to become your customer or not. BOFU content makes the final push to show off your value with customer reviews, comparison charts, and product demonstrations.
The value of the top and bottom of the funnel is clear. The top of the funnel attracts people to your brand, and the bottom of the funnel closes the deal. However, without strong MOFU marketing, there isn’t a clear path forward and many prospects will fall off.
Why Does Middle of the Funnel Content Matter?
The middle of the funnel is where your business needs to nurture your leads. At this stage, prospects are looking for more in-depth information about your business and products.
MOFU Marketing Can Increase Sales
To anyone new to sales and marketing strategies, it might seem like customers can move directly from showing interest in your business to buying your products. While this does happen occasionally, it is not something you can count on every time.
What these inexperienced marketers often overlook is the educational component of the middle of the funnel. Without a solid strategy for the middle of your marketing funnel, your leads could lose interest in your products and move on to your competition.
In 2020, Google realized that even as a global powerhouse, it still needed to pay attention to the marketing middle. It found when it focused its efforts on the middle of the funnel, it earned 16 times more product sales than before.
Global consumer data leader, Nielson, found similar results in an analysis of packaged goods campaigns for consumers. It found that marketing strategies that covered the entire funnel had 45% better returns than those that only focused on one stage of the funnel.
While your business may not be as ubiquitous as Google or Nielson, these marketing results prove that the middle of the funnel can have a significant impact on how many prospects come out of the funnel as paying customers. Your customers want to be seamlessly guided through the marketing funnel and learn more about you and your products before they commit. This is why middle of the funnel content is so important.
MOFU Marketing Nurtures and Qualifies Leads
When your sales team keeps asking for more leads, they likely really want better leads. One of the key roles of the middle of the funnel is to filter through your leads so only the best and most qualified leads make it through to the bottom.
If you were to ask your sales manager if they wanted 100 fresh leads or 10 nurtured, highly qualified leads, they’re probably going to take the 10 every time.
Lead nurturing and lead qualification help you discover which leads are truly interested in your products and services. You can then focus your MOFU content on the specific needs of those qualified leads.
7 Proven Middle of the Funnel Marketing Practices
Now that you understand why the middle of the funnel is so important, here are 7 proven strategies you can use to improve your middle of the funnel content marketing.
1. Offer Content with Real Solutions
By the time a prospect reaches the middle of the funnel, they understand what their problem is, and they are looking for a solution. Your marketing materials at this stage need to focus on how your products and services solve problems, and not just any problems, your prospect’s problems.
Your potential customers don’t want to waste time filtering through content that describes those problems, they are ready for solutions.
2. Focus on Customer Validation
For this type of MOFU content, listen to your potential customers. What are they saying about your products? Do they need more information about a particular feature or why your services are priced a certain way? Whatever information they’re looking for that will help them decide on your brand, that is the type of content you need to offer.
3. Use Lead Scoring
Lead scoring is a common sales and marketing technique that assigns a numerical score to each lead. With that score, you can prioritize the leads most likely to turn into paying customers.
The scores come from a prospect’s behaviors and profile and are typically based on previous customers and leads who did not become customers.
Your company can compare your current leads to your previous leads to see what they have in common. If they match more closely with a successful customer, they will likely get a higher score than a lead that matches more with a lost lead.
While there is no exact formula for lead scoring, many companies use some of the following considerations:
Page views on your company’s website
Potential false information
Lead scoring helps you create more specialized middle of the funnel content.
4. Stay in Contact with Email Marketing
Many leads spend a lot of time in the middle of the funnel, especially if you are a B2B brand. To keep your company name and products at the forefront of their mind, invest in quality email marketing.
While overdoing it can quickly get you flagged as spam or cause someone to unsubscribe, carefully planned messages can encourage your leads to continue their customer journey and ensure they don’t forget you.
These MOFU marketing emails should include helpful information such as product updates, your latest blog posts, links to ebooks, and other high-value, educational content.
5. Educate Your Leads
Make it easy for your leads to get to know your brand and your products with a wealth of educational materials. This will make it easy for them to learn as much as possible and feel more confident in their decision to become a customer.
Content like product demonstration videos and in-depth how-to guides are what your leads need in the middle of the funnel.
Make sure these educational resources are well organized and easy to find on your website. If finding this information is frustrating for your leads, it could be enough for them to dismiss you for one of your competitors.
6. Simplify Communication
One of the worst mistakes a company can make in the middle of the funnel is making it difficult for leads to contact them. If the only contact information available leads directly to sales, this adds unnecessary friction to something that should have a simple solution.
When a lead has a question or concern, you should have a general helpline available along with other popular options like chatbots and FAQ sections available 24 hours a day.
7. Improve Your CTA Mapping
Most pages on your website should have some type of call to action or CTA. CTAs are a crucial tool in letting your leads know what they should do next. If they read through a product page, but there is no link to learn more or proceed to purchase, they have hit a dead end.
If you find many of your leads are dropping out in the middle of the funnel, your CTAs might be missing or leading them in circles back to the content they’ve already seen.
Map out your CTAs to make sure they follow a logical progression that clearly moves your leads through the marketing funnel.
Types of Middle of the Funnel Content (with Examples)
With a good understanding of why middle of the Funnel content is important and how you can use it, here are some middle of the funnel content examples.
Blogs: Blogs are an important part of content marketing for all stages of the marketing funnel. For MOFU content, blogs should offer deeper insights into your products and services to show leads how they work in the real world.
Airtable does a great job of this in its blog. In the Stories section, you can read blogs about how companies use Airtable to solve problems. This strategy uses customer validation to convince other companies that their products can work for them too.
Case Studies: Case studies are another example of customer validation. Not only do they tell a story about how a business used or is still using your products, but they typically include clear results with data to back them up.
In this example, ClearVoice shares how its blogging strategy helped Waikiki Resort recover from having to close for eight months in 2020.
FAQ Databases: Giving leads an easy option to quickly find answers to common questions is crucial for middle of the funnel marketing. One of the simplest ways to do that is with a Frequently Asked Questions database.
At Express Writers, our FAQ section includes categories for every stage of the funnel. Mid-funnel leads would likely be interested in the EW Basics and Our Process sections, which offer an overview of how our content process works.
Educational Resources: Often, offering something for free can encourage leads to stick around. Once they’ve realized the benefits of the free product, they may be convinced to invest fully and become a paying customer.
HubSpot offers an extensive library of free marketing resources, including workbooks, templates, ebooks, and guides. Many of these resources are gated, meaning a lead must give their contact information before they can download the product. This works in favor of HubSpot so they can stay in contact with their new lead.
In addition to these popular types of middle of the funnel content, you can also consider:
Social media content
Product demonstration videos
Ace Every Stage of Your Content Marketing Funnel with Express Writers
By giving the middle of the marketing funnel the attention it deserves, you should start seeing significant results, especially if your business has neglected it in the past. Now that you’re ready to commit more time and resources to the middle of the funnel, you need the right content to improve your conversion rates.
At Express Writers, we are experts in creating content for every stage of the marketing funnel. We understand why each stage is important and how to deliver the right content for each stage.
If your marketing team has struggled with middle of the funnel content before, employing some outside help might be necessary.
If you choose Express Writers, we will match the best writers to your business needs to ensure you get the best content possible. Whether you want one blog or are ready to commit to a long-term partnership, we have content options for every budget.
Explore our Content Shop today to get the MOFU content your business needs.
When you hear the phrase “artificial intelligence” (AI), you might imagine sentient machines determined to take over the world. In reality, AI has become a useful tool many of us use every day – think Siri or Alexa. AI in content marketing has also become widespread.
This technology has benefits and drawbacks, both of which can be significant. A late 2020 survey from
Gartner shows that 41% of respondents reported increased revenue after incorporating AI tools into their marketing campaigns. Another 38% added more personalization to their content with AI, which led to better customer satisfaction.
While AI can produce some impressive content, if used too extensively, the lack of humanity in the pieces you write is likely to be extremely noticeable.
If you’ve been thinking about using AI in your content, this is the article for you. We will explore the history of AI in content marketing, how content writers can use it today, and why humans will never be replaced by AI.
A Quick History of AI
Artificial intelligence used to be something relegated to science fiction. Fans of the genre could watch a human-like robot explore the final frontier in Star Trek (Data) or kill off its human overlords in 2001: A Space Odyssey (Hal). But, in the real world, AI is used as a versatile tool across many industries.
Over the last century, the theories around AI, or artificial intelligence, have evolved wildly. In fact, the term “artificial intelligence” was first coined by John McCarthy in 1956. Additionally, scientist and mathematician, Alan Turing, created what we know today as the Turing Test in the 1950s.
This series of questions is used to determine if a computer is capable of human-like thinking. These days, many researchers disregard the Turing Test today because it is too simple and has too many limitations. Then, in the 1960s, the United States Department of Defense started investing in artificial intelligence research.
Since then, AI has expanded to nearly every industry around the world and continues to evolve rapidly. When used correctly, artificial intelligence is an impressive and versatile tool. It is capable of making our lives easier, regardless of how it gets shown off in movies or television.
In recent years, we have seen incredible feats of AI from IBM’s Watson besting Jeopardy champions to Google’s AI reading lips better than professionals. AI has also become adept at predicting the future with MIT’s AI predicating actions two seconds before they happen.
With innovations like these, finding ways to use this advanced technology in content marketing is a no-brainer. There’s even been a big breakthrough in the use of AI in marketing with the evolution of “big data.” Now that computers can store massive amounts of information, machine learning and AI capabilities have skyrocketed.
These advancements are great for AI in content marketing because they can allow for more in-depth research and assistance while creating content.
Types of Artificial Intelligence
Artificial intelligence is used in much of the technology we interact with every day. AI is generally split into three categories based on capabilities:
Narrow AI: Also known as Weak AI, Narrow AI is typically limited to one task with predefined functions, for example, Alexa, Siri, or Google Translate.
General AI: Also known as Strong AI, General AI can learn and perform many tasks that humans are capable of, such as driving a car, creating a digital painting, or writing a novel.
Super AI: Super AI has surpassed human capabilities and can make rational decisions. Human beings have yet to create super AI.
How AI is Used in Content Marketing
When used well, AI can be a powerful tool for content marketing and even offer a competitive advantage. As the amount of data we produce continues to grow, AI is a necessary tool to stay on top of informational changes. Moreover, AI has the potential to revolutionize content writing, providing automated assistance and enhancing productivity in creating compelling and engaging content.
Here are some of the most useful ways to use AI in content marketing.
Reading content that feels like it was created for you can make anyone feel special. In fact, one study by McKinsey shows that 71% of consumers expect personalization in their interactions with businesses, and 66% of them feel frustrated when they don’t get it.
Using AI when you automate some forms of content can help you keep things personalized at a larger scale. Doing this ensures that you avoid being overwhelmed with frustrated customers that leave you for a business with more of a personalized touch.
Personalized content is most evident in email marketing. Click through a small handful of promotional emails in your inbox. How many of them include your name in the header? Or reference an item you looked at on a company’s website but did not buy?
Source: Email from BuzzSumo
Streaming services like Netflix use AI to personalize your home page with recommended content based on what you have previously watched and liked.
Personalized content can help increase customer engagement and revenue with minimal human interaction needed.
Some large-scale news agencies like Washington Post, Fox, and Yahoo have started using AI to generate articles for the latest news updates. AI can instantly learn the information it needs and produce an article covering the topic.
This software won’t necessarily replace journalists or writers, but companies use the tools to share stories more quickly as they happen. They are then able to free up employees for other tasks and avoid the loss of hours and the expense needed to have a human write the content with a very short turnaround time.
Computers can take in and understand vast quantities of information in small fragments of time. This data -devouring behavior is helpful in learning new insights about your customers. What might take your marketing team weeks of analyzing, an AI-powered system can get through in minutes.
With these powerful insights, you can create more useful and personalized content that your leads and customers want to see.
Improved User Experiences
One innovative AI-powered tool that has become ubiquitous across the internet is chatbots. These systems use Natural Language Processing (NLP) to mimic human conversation. Today, they are commonly used as a customer support channel.
While chatbots are not a complete substitute for human help, they are a great way to fill in the gaps and offer customers some self-service options since chatbots never sleep or take a day off. Chatbots can help customers solve simple solutions by linking to FAQ databases.
You can also use the information you collect from your chatbots to drive content marketing decisions. For example, if customers frequently use your chatbots to ask the same question, this could be an excellent topic to cover in a blog or to add to an educational database.
Perhaps one of the best uses of AI in content marketing is the ability to save vast amounts of time with content generation tools. Instead of taking hours to choose blog topics, find relevant keywords, create a content strategy, and schedule social media posts, AI can do all of that in a small fraction of time.
With the time saved by not having to do these tasks, content marketers can focus more of their energy on the creative side of things, a place AI hasn’t fully entered.
How Does AI Generate Content?
When artificial intelligence generates new content, it examines already existing content to put together something new. Advanced algorithms like Natural Language Generation (NLG), NLP, machine learning, and deep learning collect data and look for patterns. Then, they generate something new, yet similar enough to what already exists.
Here are three content examples:
AI text generation is straightforward and works with the following steps:
Input your desired topic along with any other required information.
The AI will gather and analyze relevant information from its database and the internet to create a subset of data.
The AI processes the subset using NLP.
The AI uses NLG to create unique content with the most useful and reliable information.
One of the key benefits of AI-generated text is that it learns and improves every time it generates content. In addition, the more data it has to draw from, the better the content will be.
Deepfake videos are a relatively new area in AI technology. This advanced technology can replace a person’s face or generate a new face for someone in a video.
While this technology is popularly used for comedic purposes in many YouTube videos, it can be used for marketing purposes, too.
You could use the technology to add more personalization to your content. For example, if a customer wanted to see what a model’s makeup would look like on their skin tone, deepfake technology can adjust the video to match the viewer.
In recent years, AI-generated image technology has exploded. Many people enjoy playing with these tools to see some of the wild images AI technology creates. While some images look more like a Salvador Dali painting, others are incredibly realistic and have the potential to be a new source of images for online content.
Take this image for example. It has an image input of “a bowl of soup as a planet in the universe as digital art.” Looks pretty good.
Some of the most popular AI image generators include:
Why AI Can’t Replace Human-Created Content
With so many advancements and admittedly impressive results, it might seem like AI is quickly on its way to replacing human content creation. Thankfully for many of us in the marketing industry, this is not true.
Here are 6 reasons why humans will never be completely replaced by AI for content creation:
1. AI Does Not Have Emotional Intelligence
While some AI technology can interpret and even mimic human emotions, that does not mean AI has emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is the ability to control, express, and be aware of your and others’ emotions. It also involves handling interpersonal relationships and being empathetic.
As social animals, humans require emotional interactions to be happy and healthy. We communicate our emotions not only through body language and our words but through the release of hormones. This is something AI cannot replicate. That means content written by a person can better connect with your audience, and that’s the heart of creative marketing.
2. AI is Limited to Its Data Inputs
AI is fully based on the information it receives. While that information is vast, it is also limited. Computers have basic memory and storage limitations. Once that limit is reached, it requires new hardware to get more data and cannot adapt to this situation.
While humans tend to forget things, our brains never reach full capacity. We are capable of adapting, gathering new information at will, and improvising to new situations. These are behaviors that AI is not currently capable of.
3. AI Lacks Soft Skills
Soft skills are things like teamwork, creative thinking, interpersonal skills, and critical thinking. They are highly valued in the workplace. While AI attempts to mimic these skills with NLP technology, most humans can tell the difference when interacting with AI-powered technology.
4. AI is Powered by Humans
Artificial intelligence exists solely because of human intelligence. Humans create the code that powers AI, and they are in control of the hardware AI “lives” on. As AI technology continues to advance, those advancements are made by humans.
There is no evidence that AI will ever overtake human intelligence or capabilities since it is fully designed and operated by humans.
5. AI Has Limited Creativity
While AI technology can generate content. That content is based on everything that has come before it. It can only generate creative ideas based on things that already exist. This forces AI to stay within certain parameters – the antithesis of true creativity.
Humans, on the other hand, excel at generating creative, one-of-a-kind ideas. While we can gain inspiration from others, we like to try new things and solve problems, sometimes with little to no outside help.
6. AI Complements Human Capabilities, Instead of Replacing Them
While some human roles are undeniably being replaced by AI technology, that technology is creating new human opportunities at the same time. This is true in the marketing industry as well as other industries.
According to the World Economic Forum, 85 million human jobs will be replaced by machines or AI by 2025. In that same time, this shift will create 97 million new roles for humans.
With data like this, it is clear we can use AI technology to complement human creativity and create better, more informative, and more engaging content for everyone.
Get Great Content from Human Writers at Express Writers
While there is no denying the power, versatility, and benefits of Artificial Intelligence for content marketing, we still need the human touch.
At Express Writers, we are entirely staffed by humans who create great content. Our writers will never rely on AI to generate their content. Instead, we teach them tools to help them craft 100% unique content.
Direct response copywriting is the antithesis of the ad copywriting you see on TV. Those TV copywriters are focused on a long-term game.
They want you to remember their product if or when you see it on supermarket shelves.
In contrast, direct-response copywriting focuses on the immediate moment. This is copy that’s about inspiring the buyer to take action as soon as they’re finished reading. It can be an important tool to improve conversion rates on landing pages, blogs, and other types of content.
With direct response copywriting, you’re trying to get them to complete an action like:
Making a purchase
Signing up for your newsletter
Downloading a freebie
Following you on social media
To do this, you must craft copy that tugs at your reader’s emotions and, most importantly, addresses their worries, fears, pain points, or immediate needs.
The Art of Deeply Understanding Your Reader
Renowned copywriter David Ogilvy is perhaps the best-known direct response copywriter. In fact, he is frequently called the father of modern advertising.
Ogilvy headed up incredibly successful and memorable campaigns for some of the top brands in the 1950s and ‘60s, including American Express, Rolls Royce, Hathaway, Shell, Dove, and others.
Ogilvy understood that the most effective direct response copy isn’t just directed at your target audience – it speaks to them on a personal level.
The combination of this deep understanding and direct, personal approach is the engine that runs this form of copywriting.
X Direct Response Copywriting Takeaways from Real-World Examples
How do you write great direct response copy? There are a few key principles you must follow:
Write a powerful, compelling headline
Use long-form copy
Add an irresistible CTA
Stay customer focused
Follow K.I.S.S. principles
Cultivate a sense of urgency
To understand these principles better, we will look at a handful of real-world examples
1. A Great Headline Snags Your Readers
The first and most important principle of direct response copywriting is to craft a powerful, compelling headline. Your headline should snag your reader’s attention and entice them to keep reading.
A recent study by Microsoft showed that the average human attention span has dropped to just 8 seconds. With such limited time, crafting the perfect headline is even more important.
The right headline sparks their interest and encourages them to continue reading, helping you overcome that 8-second barrier.
Here is a classic example from none other than David Ogilvy:
“At 60 miles an hour, the loudest noise in this new Rolls-Royce comes from the electric clock.”
Ogilvy described this headline as the best he ever wrote. This headline was so effective, other world-class companies like Shell specifically requested Ogilvy for their campaigns and wouldn’t settle until he agreed. They refused to even consider another copywriter.
It starts out with a solid headline – Everyone can. Photoshop. This plays on the prevalence of Photoshop in today’s world. The brand name has practically turned into a verb.
Along with the headline, there is some compelling introductory copy and an eye-catching animation.
Keep scrolling down the page, and you’ll see real-world examples of how professionals use Photoshop today to make their visuals more powerful.
Near the middle of the page, Adobe offers a captivating CTA in the form of a quiz.
The page continues with a how-to section with links to learn more, highlights of the latest new features and improvements, and then a selection of frequently asked questions.
There’s a lot of copy of this page, but it’s all useful, informative, and persuasive. It helps you make that purchase decision.
Most importantly, it keeps you scrolling, learning about each feature, and then entices you to click “Buy now.”
If the only copy on this page was the first paragraph, it becomes a lot less convincing. There isn’t enough information to help you decide if you want to buy the product.
Beyond this visual example, there is data to back up the case for long-form copy. Conversion Rate Experts ran a case study for Crazy Egg that compared a short vs. long landing page.
In the case study, they compared the original “control” landing page to a new page nearly 20 times longer.
They ran an A/B split test to gauge which page had a higher conversion rate. The results: the long-form content outperformed the short page by 30%.
These results make sense. With more information, customers feel more confident with their purchase and feel like they’re making a better, smarter decision.
Another consideration is the price of what you’re selling. If you have a landing page promoting a free case study, a short page is likely all you need.
However, the more expensive a product is, the longer your page should be. In the above example, Crazy Egg’s heat mapping service costs as much as $249 per month.
The key to producing long-form direct response copy is keeping your copy engaging. Long, boring content will quickly lose your readers’ interest no matter how good what you’re selling is.
3. An Irresistible CTA Clinches the Response You Want
Without a call to action (CTA), all the copy you created to inform, persuade, and convince your readers will be useless.
Think of this call as your battle cry. It inspires your readers to act now and do exactly what you want them to do.
Here is a good example of a motivating CTA for the streaming service Hulu.
Hulu has an eye-catching homepage that showcases dimmed images of some of their most popular shows. The bold green text overlay tells customers they can bundle Hulu with other streaming services to save money.
The word “get” inspires direct and immediate action, which is the hallmark of a good CTA. Notice how Hulu highlights the high-value offer with the large green, mouse-activated button. Those who want to sign up for only Hulu have to look for the less noticeable, white “Sign up for Hulu only” link.
So why is this CTA effective? It implies visitors are getting a good deal by choosing a bundle. Instead of a simple sign-up button, Hulu uses the “Get the Disney Bundle” message and emphasizes value to encourage visitors to sign up for the bundle.
Hulu’s copywriters made the CTA actionable, concrete, and persuasive – three things you must have to push your reader into the direct response you want your copy to produce.
4. Staying Customer-Focused Keeps Your Copy Relevant
Direct-response copywriting needs to stay relevant for the audience/reader to deliver the results you want. It’s about your customers, not about you.
This form of copywriting exclusively uses the second-person voice to address the reader. It’s focused on “you.”
Here is an example from HubSpot’s homepage that highlights how their CRM platform can help “you.”
In this copy, HubSpot is talking about what it offers the reader/prospect. It is not strictly about how great HubSpot is.
Many well-meaning businesses make this mistake. They make their direct response copy about them when it should be all about their customers.
To make your copy focused squarely on your customers, you must understand their wants, needs, and preferences.
Here are a few concrete steps to help you get to know your target audience:
Gather data on your current customers and look for similarities
Keep your content clear and straightforward. It can be tempting to move towards witty writing. However, not everyone has the same sense of humor. What is funny and clever to you might come across as trivial or even confusing to your readers. Clarity should always win out over comedy.
Skip the jargon. Every industry and business has its own “shop talk” and jargon. While you might use these words with your business partners, avoid using these words in your copy. You risk alienating your potential customers if you use this unfamiliar or complicated language. Stick with plain language that clearly conveys your message.
Avoid over-explaining. No one wants to read through pages of unnecessary information to get to the point. Most will give up before it comes to that. Keep your explanations of your products and services concise and well-rounded. Tell customers how it solves their pain points and what other people think of it.
Present trustworthy content. Your customers want guidance. Present content that’s well-researched, cites reputable sources, and presents facts and statistics to show you can be trusted.
Use Readability Checkers
A good readability checker gives you a quick glance at how easy your copy is to read.
Most checkers base their scores on the Flesch-Kinkaid Reading Ease formula. This formula determines the readability of a piece of text by looking at the ratio of words to syllables to sentences.
There are two basic scores you that come from the formula: a readability score and a grade level (i.e., the minimum grade level knowledge a person needs to understand the text).
The readability score is scaled from 0-100 (hardest to easiest). The higher the readability score, the lower the grade level that can understand it.
Here are some readability checkers you can use to test how easy your copy is to read:
For an example of incredibly simple and readable direct response copy, let’s look at the Band-Aid brand home page:
When we plug this copy into the Hemingway App, it earns a “Grade 6” score for readability. It’s so simple, nearly anyone will understand it:
Also noteworthy: 0 sentences are “hard to read” or “very hard to read.”
We can also test the readability of the entire page by plugging it into WebFX’s Readability Test:
The page will be “easily understood by 11 to 12-year-olds.” The demographic for this website would be adults, so anyone in Band-Aid’s target audience should have no problems reading its website.
6. Cultivating a Sense of Urgency Makes Direct Customer Action Inevitable
The final piece of the direct response copywriting puzzle is urgency.
For a great example of cultivating urgency in your copy, we will look at the product page for the Apple Watch Ultra. The page starts with a bold headline of “Adventure awaits.”
If you are interested in an Apple Watch, you might read this headline and wonder, “How can this watch improve my adventures?” As you scroll down the page, you learn about some of its adventure-ready features:
As you continue to scroll, the features keep adding up. This is what builds anticipation. You might start thinking, “What can’t this watch do?”
As the benefits pile up, you may feel more excited about the watch. It’s an irresistible build-up that will inevitably convince at least some potential customers to add the Apple Watch to their cart.
What’s another way to create urgency? Use the scarcity principle. The scarcity principle taps into a basic instinct – the fear of missing out. When you use this principle in your direct response copywriting, you encourage customers to purchase an item or sign up for a service before it’s gone.
You’ve likely noticed this phenomenon in your online shopping. Urgency is usually triggered by key phrases, including:
Hurry – While supplies last!
Only 3 left in stock
Limited quantities available
Amazon does an excellent job of adding urgency and scarcity to many of its products:
In this example, Amazon has a countdown for delivery and a description that says only two are left in stock. If you are considering this product, this emphasis on urgency and scarcity might encourage you to quickly click “Add to Cart” or “Buy Now.”
Make Direct Response Marketing Work for You in Your Copy
Direct response copywriting is a tried-and-true method to compel readers to act, whether it’s on your sales page, landing page, blog, email, or any other piece of content.
The compelling examples we included above can help you make your copywriting even more effective.
To learn even more about direct response copywriting and its powerful effects, read this blog from CoSchedule that explores how junk mail uses direct response techniques and how you can use those principles in your marketing.
Looking for a Direct Response Copywriter?
If you need a direct response copywriter who can inspire the customer actions you need, you’ve come to the right place.
Here at Express Writers, our talented team of expert writers can craft compelling direct response copy that gets results. See what we can do for you and check out the possibilities for web pages, email marketing, and expert blogs.