Exercise Your Empathy Muscle for Better Copy and Higher Conversions


I’ve noticed that a lot of people who aren’t as comfortable with the written word, put out copy that sounds wooden, inhuman, and often vague or just plain irrelevant. It’s not like they want to sound like a robot from a 1950s sci-fi movie, they just don’t understand how to bridge the gap between the message to express and reader’s experience.


The key to this is perhaps surprising.




If someone comes to your website, you need to speak their language, you need to be able to relate to them in an authentic way if you want any chance of capturing their attention.


So how do you get there?


Write like you’re talking to a real person. Play a little empathy game and make up an imaginary person. The marketing term is called Ideal Customer Persona or ICP, but we could just as well call it your Imaginary Cherished Pal, because the point here is to create a relationship, a friendship that you will nurture through good communication.


So think about it, give it some real thought. Who is coming to your site? Why did they come there? What were they looking for before they came to you? More importantly, WHY were they looking in the first place. What deeper needs and desires are they trying to fulfill?


And from there, let’s get creative, let’s have fun. What music do they listen to? Are they sarcastic? Sensitive? Introverted? What’s their social life like? What kinds of books to they read? Etc, etc, etc….  And give them a name. Alice or Jacob or whatever.


The more you flesh this out into a detailed imaginary picture of who you’re writing to, the more real and authentic your writing is going to become. And the more real and authentic it becomes, the more effective it becomes at getting your message across because you will naturally begin communicating to them on the human-to-human level instead of a nebulous-internet-glob-to-anonymous-website-traffic level.

It sounds strange, but this little exercise WILL translate to higher conversions. The inauthentic fakeness in your writing is unconsciously picked up by your reader and they will instinctively shy away from it. Write like a human trying to interact and communicate with another human and your prospect will feel you, relate to you, build a relationship with you, and maybe even become a customer. 


Jeff Kimes