April 20th, 2018

The Long and Short of Copywriting

by Katelynn Watkins

There are all kinds of messaging available to you and your brand: social media posts, advertising calls to action, blog posts, landing page copy, email newsletters.

The one thing that all of these have in common is that they need strong, well-crafted content to push your intentions and get you the results for which you’re hoping. But how you choose to word your message, and the word count for each platform, is a different matter entirely.

Short-form content is exactly what it sounds like: brief, yet poignant phrases meant to deliver an argument or information without overdoing it on detail or exposition. Here at Sage Island, our marketing team frequently utilizes this format for social media posts for our clients. Character limits aside, most platforms are not suited for paragraphs of thorough explanations and in-depth stories. Instead, we use language that provides the average Facebook, Instagram or Twitter follower with enough to understand the point of the post, but not so much that he or she isn’t curious enough to click the link or otherwise seek more information. It’s a balancing act, but one that pays off in the end.

However, there are other instances that might call for short-form content, namely advertising copy. When you want to sell something, the best approach is typically going to be the concise one. With this in mind, direct calls to action and punchy phrases are key to the overall sales strategy. Marketing teams need to be able to condense product or service details to accommodate the literal and figurative space constraints in order to make these the most effective messages as possible and promote sales.

Long-form copywriting is what most people think of, though, when the topic of content marketing arises. This category can include everything from landing page content to blog posts, and even applies to press releases and content articles for non-digital mediums. What those platforms are will dictate the precise word count and overall tone of the message. For example, some brands use blog posts as a means of promoting services and spreading news to their clients in a more personable manner, rather than the professional voice they might apply to product and service pages contained in other parts of the company website.

The same idea can be applied to the differences in copywriting for a press release and an article that will be included in an email newsletter. Both might carry the same general idea, but an experienced copywriter will know that the content will have to be formatted and written in different ways to fit the platform. A press release meant for the general public of news editors will be more formal than an email that’s being sent to a select audience of the company’s clients. But, as is the case with a blog post or website content, the allowance for writing space also clears the way for more exposition than does a quick announcement on Facebook, or link preview on Twitter. This is a great way for companies and brands to show clients how dedicated they are to keeping them in the loop and including them in plans for future campaigns and offers.

Long- and short-form content writing are essential pieces to any great marketing strategy, so it’s important to have a team on your side that can balance both styles and utilize them to the brand’s advantage. If you’re ready to address one or both of these areas to make your campaigns more effective, contact Sage Island and see what we can do for you.

It's more than a message in a bottle.

Subscribe to our newsletter to get all the latest from the island sent right to your inbox