Write a Powerful, 83-Word Email About an Air Purifier …
In today's article I’m going to brief you on an online copywriting assignment.
You’re going to be promoting a high-tech air purifier.
We’re doing this because we want you to have immediate, hands-on experience with writing for the web.
Here’s How It Works …
First, keep reading.
I’m going to brief you on the job, just like a real client would.
Then I’m going to give you some tips on how to write the copy.
Think about it. This will be a professional copywriting project you can put in your portfolio!
And it’s a great opportunity to get a sense of what it feels like to be given a brief to write copy for a real client.
Are you in? I hope so.
Let’s get started …
Here’s Your Brief …
Your job is to write promotional copy for the SpringDawn Air Purifier.
This copy is going to appear in an email.
There’ll be a headline of 8 words or less that appears at the top of the body of the email itself.
Then a photo of the SpringDawn Air Purifier in a living room, then up to 75 words of text, followed by a button for readers to click if they want to learn more.
You probably get emails like this yourself … selling clothes, vacations, books, household items, and so on.
To be clear …
Headline of up to 8 words
[photo of SpringDawn Air Purifier]
Up to 75 words of body text
[The More Info button]
Don’t worry about the photo or the More Info button. And don’t worry about the email subject line.
Your task is just to write the headline and 75 words of compelling text.
And … in answer to a question we got last time … if you use just 6 words in the headline, no, you can’t use 2 extra words in the body copy.
And … the answer to another question I get asked … yes, two words connected by a hyphen still count as two words!
Up to 8 words for the headline.
Up to 75 words for the body text.
Basic Product Info
Your client will always give you some briefing information like this, whatever you’re going to be writing.
The product name is: SpringDawn Air Purifier. (I made the name up, but it’s based on a real product!)
Target Audience: People who want the air in their homes cleaned and refreshed, efficiently and with ease.
Product: This is a knee-high, rectangle-shaped air purifier with a sleek design and high-tech function.
- Pre-filter, true HEPA filter, and activated carbon filter
- 3 fan speeds depending on room size and air quality, with cutting edge smart sensor or manual toggle
- Can clean rooms up to 900 sq. ft.
- Smart replace-filter indicator
- Centrifugal fan design and semi-spiral air ducts increase intake volume
- Quiet sleep mode
- Lightweight, long power cord, and easy to maneuver
- LED display with intuitive interface
- 1-12 hour timer
What’s unique: Airborne irritants, toxins, and odors are no match for the multi-layered filter. The assorted fan speeds make it useful in any room, regardless of size. Automated features can take care of most the work for you, or manually adjust settings to your preference.
Price: This is a $200 purchase.
(Pro tip: Don’t mention the price in your copy. The price will be revealed on the website, after readers have clicked through from your email copy.)
How to Research and Prepare
Copy and print out the briefing information above.
Then go to Amazon and look at the features and descriptions of other air purifiers …
Take notes. Get a feel for the products and the buyers.
In other words, do your homework!
This is how it goes with real clients. They give you a briefing, then you do your own research too, digging deeper and immersing yourself in the product or service.
Pro Tips for Making Your Copy Better
Once you’ve done all that research, you might think it’s time to start writing.
Not so fast!
That’s just Step One.
Step Two is to immerse yourself in the lives of your buyers.
Close your eyes and imagine yourself in the home of someone who might be interested in buying a SpringDawn Air Purifier.
Will this be their first purchase of this kind or product? What’s motivating them? Why now?
Are they motivated mostly by the idea of enjoying fresh air in their home? Eliminating odors from cooking or smoking? Are they concerned about allergens or dust causing respiratory issues? Do they have pets or small children? Maybe they don’t have much time for cleaning? What does their environment look like?
Not sure how to answer those questions?
Here’s another pro tip for you …
Go back to those Amazon listings. Now, instead of reading the product descriptions, read the buyer reviews!
THAT’S where you get to know how it feels to be in your prospects’ shoes.
Totally immerse yourself in those reviews and opinions. Get a feel for the language buyers use when talking about these products.
Do that and THEN you’ll be ready to start writing.
Remember … nobody truly NEEDS a SpringDawn Air Purifier. We’ve all managed to survive without a $200 air purifier in our living rooms! But a lot of people might WANT one.
Why? Why do we want them? How will our lives change if we have one?
Answer those questions and you’ll be well on your way to writing some great copy.
Three More Important Tips
I’ve been a professional copywriter for over 40 years now.
But still, after all those years, my first draft is NEVER my best draft.
Try writing several drafts of both the headline and body text until it’s the best you can do.
Almost every purchase we make is driven more by our hearts than our brains. We buy stuff to satisfy our emotions. We buy stuff to make ourselves feel good or to fulfill something in our lives.
So … don’t focus just on the features … give thought to the emotional triggers too.
You’re not trying to close the sale with this copy. There’s no buy button.
Your task is to make the reader want to click through to a sales page on the company website.
The purpose of the email copy is to make people interested enough to want to learn more.
Make them click that More Info button!
Time to get writing … and good luck!
Do you have any questions? Let us know in the comments.
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How do I submit my rmail? Do I have to attach a document? Or do I include this as an email to this submission url?
Guest (Patricia Slocum) –
Is this a Space Ad?
In the brief for this writing challenge, the wording, "What’s unique: The multi-layered filter is no match for any airborne irritants, toxins, or odors" does not inspire product confidence. "No match for" means easily defeated. Perhaps the "no match for" phrase should be changed to "easily removes." It would make the product a much better buy...
Cut off forCalifornia would be 8:59pm on October 22, 2020. Is this correct?
Desperately In Need of AWAI –
I'm wondering if the recipients of this email are existing subscribers to the SpringDawn Air Purifier company's email communications? Thanks!
Crystal M –
Wild!There is a pop-up ad on here for an air purifier. :)
Nora King –
Great one uncle Nick. Great one AWAI.
Quite very encouraging. Quite fine a challenge for up and coming writers.
...with so much benefits.
Got no question...Just want to commend you for your good work.
I really do wish this is going to continue... More frequently and with bigger mouth-watering prizes.
Is aunty Rebecca Matter (I call her Rebecca Divine - God send) reading this? Please AWAI should throw out this kind of challenge more frequently.
Thanks once again.
I'm shooting in my entry in a moment.
I wish myself goodluck!
Guest (Kennedy) –
Good morning! I’m going to answer questions in blocks. Here is the first block of answers…
Patricia… click on the submission link above and you’ll see where to enter your text. : )
CBP… no, it’s an email.
pk9073… You’re right. let me see if I can get this fixed! Thanks for the heads up.
Desperately in need… sounds about right. ; )
Crystal… Imagine this is the first time they have heard about the company and its products.
Nick Usborne –
Is the deadline really Friday night? That leaves at most three full days for the project. Seems shorter than normal. Please confirm.
- Tom Fuszard
Guest (Tom) –
Wow, the deadline is tomorrow! Only two days for this project? I would thinks we would have at least a week? Is this standard for email deadlines?
I really wanted to try it, but two days is too short a time frame for me. Does anybody else feel as I do?
Didn't see this until today - 22nd. But, I will to do it! And, you are right Nick - it's great practice and someone has to win. :)
I assume each specification under Features must be included in the copy...right?
The deadline is tighter than usual. But it definitely falls within the range of “normal” in the real world, when you’re working with actual clients. Deadlines focus the mind. : )
Hcc28… there is no obligation to include all the specs and features. Probably not a good idea.
Nick Usborne –
Yes, I agree, Deadlines do focus the mind! I was working like a mad woman last night, but I will have something to submit today! These projects are awesome! Great incentive to practice! :)
Do punctuation marks count as words?
Guest (Amir ) –
Are we going to get a confirmation email from our submission? I didn't see it so I asked. Thanks.
Bummer! One unit on Amazon has the perfect ad copy (must have been written by an AWAI grad!). Was ready to use certain words until I saw that... Had to go back to the drawing board.
Great exercise, BTW.
Guest (Tom Fuszard) –
Will you be posting the winning entries? I'd like to see what I could have improved on, as I'm totally new at this, and really want to learn. Thank you!!
Guest (gracie) –
Wish I had seen this before 8 p.m. PDT, October 23rd. I'm used to writing (and designing) on tight deadlines, but this is super tight. And yet . . . I am a lifelong devotee of air purifiers!
We're looking forward to seeing what everyone comes up with! Stay tuned and we'll let you know when we have a winner.
It will take a while as we have hundreds of submissions to review. : )
Nick Usborne –