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Compelling Text

Website text is an area where any site can excel. Question: why isn’t every site using compelling text? Of course, there is more to good text than simply listing the features of your product and we will review several of those now.

The first step to writing great text for a page is to understand what the page is about… At first that sounds simple but we are not asking what the owner thinks the page should be about; we are asking what words the visitor is using when conducting a search.

This is no small matter and you will notice we took the issue up before even talking about the text on the page. The trick here, as with the domain name itself, is to find the keywords the potential visitor is using when searching for a tourism based service in your category and area.

An example would be a search for “Hotel Rooms in (town)”, or “(town) Hotels”, or “Cheap Lodging in (town)” or… or… or. We want to see the total number of searches and the amount of competition in each key phrase before putting the first word down.

With this information, we have the title of our page and a tight focus for our text. Next comes the actual text itself.

It is normal for the business owner to become so focused of the features of the product that they can not tell you what the benefit of using the product is. The tourism industry is no better than any other segment at this.

If you read the page and it is a list of features and not benefits — the webpage has failed already. Your text MUST place the product benefit front and center. The visitor has a problem and here is how you will solve it. The topic is so critical to tourism marketing we have a separate article on the subject.

We often assume that once the website visitor will decides that he is sold on our service, he will then take the necessary action to procure the product. DANGER: this is not true. He will not call, he will not drive by, no he will not do anything. Not only will you need to tell him what to do next, you must make it easy for him to do.

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Telling him what to do next is called a Call to Action and it must be right on the page. You must have a Book Now button that takes him directly to the reservations page. Simply putting the phone number at the bottom of the page is not adequate. Add the number a couple of times throughout the page, right below the words Call Now. Ask for the order more than once.

While this Tourism Marketing Tip is not about video, we would be remiss if we didn’t mention that video should also be a part of this mix.

There is another part to text, there has to be enough of it. This is exactly five-hundred words. We made the 500th word “five-hundred” and put it in red for a reason: Experts say you need at least five-hundred words of text on every page. The search engines use text when deciding what your site is about and how they want to rank it. They cannot see your beautiful photographs or watch your videos.

We have found the average Internet web-page has seven-hundred and twenty words. Why not test this? Search in a competitive, local category, then copy & paste the Home page text into your word processor. Do an actual word count and you will see for yourself.

The whole five-hundred word thing makes sense, more text gives you more opportunities to seed your key phrase into the text without keyword stuffing. The text reads normally to the human visitor, yet the important keywords are there several times. For example, the word tourism appears in this article five times. It is not keyword stuffing but it is helpful to the website’s overall SEO.

Exercise some caution with the placement of all this text. Look with care and you will notice how most websites put this verbiage at the bottom of their pages. That’s because the average person will not scroll all the way to the bottom and we don’t want to bore them with lots of text. There are exceptions of course, like this article, but the average page, like our Home page, will bury the text.

Should you need help in this area, feel free to drop us a note.

Video Transcript

You know, when it comes to marketing it
just seems like so much of this stuff
really is not under your control. I mean
how do you do backlinks on a website
anyway? Well there are some things that
are terribly important and they are
under your control. One of them is
compelling text and that's what we want
to talk about right now. This is Section
1, Lecture 7. This time we're just outside
the fortress Torre Talao and Torre means
tower. This fortress was built by the
King of Napoli about 400 years ago to
protect the little town of Scalia, Italy
from Pirates. Now compelling text:
Compelling Text is something that I deal
with on almost a daily basis and I see
so much text that, with just a few
changes, could make a great deal of
difference to the business owner. Let me
ask you something; the does your text say
something like "Fine Italian dining for
the discerning customer"? If it does you
don't really have compelling text. You
see the average person visiting a
website, for example, is only going to be
there for a few seconds before they
decide to click away or read on. So the
first few lines of text needs to be
terribly strong. I have a customer named
Terry Clancy and I was telling Terry
this as we were close to finishing his
website. And I asked Terry "write
something battery acid strong" for me:
Compelling Text. Terry came back a day
or two later with text that said "If you
do business with me, give me one day and
I'll change your business". He teaches
ethics to insurance sales reps and it
was such a strong statement: Give me one
day and I'll change your business, that
it really made his website
work. It lowered his bounce rate and made
for better customers. So compelling text
needs to be all about how you are going
to change your customer. Don't forget
it's the product benefit and not the
features of the product that are going
to lead you to compelling text. If you
can master just this one concept, you're
on your way to higher conversions. One of
my favorite marketing quotes is by Zig
Ziglar, he said no one ever went into a
hardware store looking for a quarter
inch drill bit. What they really need is
a quarter inch hole. Now, if you need to
learn more about the Product Benefit
don't forget to watch lecture 1.2. You
know, compelling text is a difference
between your brochures getting read and
going into the trash can. So don't be
afraid to use strong language; simple
declarative sentences. As a matter of
fact, you need to state your benefit in a
very straight forward fashion and
remember a lot of words like best or
favorite are actually subjective. And
don't forget: you want to tell everyone
who you are, what you do, and the benefit
of using you. I can't over stress
that benefit part quite enough. Now you
also need to weave your keywords into
all of your marketing even though we
talked about keywords on the website.
It's important that you use those same
keywords everywhere because, don't forget,
that's what people are looking for.
Whether they're online or off, they're
still looking for those particular items.
Guys that's going to do it for this
segment. You have made it all the way to
the end of section 1. I'll see you soon,

Twitter? Direct Message us at @WeggieSmurf

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