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Advertising Copy: The 101 Guide for Your Better ROI

Maybe you’ve heard the term “advertising copy” before, whether on a marketing blog like this one, or in your own research of the trade.

Advertising copy, What makes it so important? And more importantly, why is it so important that we get it right?

All of the constant berating of online shopping, digital carts, coupons, deals and choices across social media leave businesses like yours in a tough spot when it comes to cutting through the noise and advertising your products and services to your audience.

There’s a lot, (even more that we don’t see on the outside) that goes into advertisements and advertisement copy across social media.

But the truth of the matter is that the most important part of the process is the three-five seconds when a consumer actually gets a glimpse of the ad. The moment when the fate of a sale lies in the balance.






logo-2 What is Advertising Copy?

Advertising copy is the written content that exists on an ad. Whether accompanied by an image or existing within a video or image, the advertising copy is a crucial part of any successful advertising campaign and shouldn’t be taken lightly. The goal of advertising copy is to capture and convert a lead with a glance. So, in other words, it needs to be….incredible.




With only a very, very short window to persuade a buyer, advertising copy must be nothing short of the most amazing, relevant, and eye-catching set of carefully worded phrases that you’ve ever written.

And this means you need to know exactly what makes good advertising copy so great.

This means you need a thorough understanding and breakdown of not only HOW to write good advertising copy, but what makes good advertising so good. And why the results are so much better when you take buyers' perspectives into account.

Well, what are we waiting for? Let’s dig into the guide you’ll ever need to perfect the art of creating successful advertising copy. 🥇

Let’s Break it Down: Advertising Copy Anatomy

Ads are little things that make big things happen. Little samples of words that tell a story. The trick is utilizing the space you have, (it can be as little as 55 characters and as much as 150 characters) to tell a good story in a very short time.

In order to be able to successfully tell your story, you need to understand the anatomy of a social paid ad: the crucial elements that make up the perfect combination of epic, to the point, and eye-catching.

There are five basic elements in an ad. These include:

  1. The Headline
  2. A Trackable Link
  3. Images/Video
  4. Targeting
  5. Call to Action

So obviously here, you’ll notice that two of the five in this list are “copy related” so those will be our main focus in this article. But for the sake of keeping you well informed, we’ll give each point a quick summary.

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#1 The Headline

This is your opportunity to grab someone’s attention. A quick sentence that says “LOOK AT ME! I’m Worth Your Time!”

Headlines are compromised of the most crucial 5-6 words of your entire ad. There’s a lot of weight on the shoulders of your headlines, so this shouldn’t be taken lightly.

#2 The Trackable Link

This, in essence, is the way you can track your conversions. If you’re using Facebook Pixel, it’ll help track your progress, but there are also other tools available, and this section is the place for the link.

#3 Images/Video

Another crucial part of the puzzle, the images, and video you include in your ad will speak volumes about your products or services, so make it high-quality, relevant, and eye-catching, if nothing else.

#4 Targeting

There is no easy solution, nor a blanket approach that works for everyone when it comes to targeting. In fact, targeting is as varied as the companies that use it.

You’ll have to do a significant amount of research to target effectively. Creating buyer personas and using them at this stage as an advantage tactic is highly effective.

#5 Call to Action

More often than not, businesses forget to place a call to action, (also known as a CTA) which can be a particularly sad mistake.

Telling the customer where and what they should be doing next is a crucial step in the process and one that shouldn’t be ignored. Whatever you do, make this a priority. Right up there with a headline.

Advertising Copy Narrative: Best Practices for Driving Success

Ad copy character count best methods? It’s helpful, but is it going to really drive sales home when it comes to your customers?

Probably not. But what will? Narrative.

Your narrative is the key to lasting success when it comes to social advertising copy.

The first thing that will catch your customer's attention is the images and videos you implement, however, the headline comes shortly afterward. And in a lot of ways, your headline is when they make a decision about whether to keep reading or keep scrolling.

Make your headline count!!

#1 Writing a Compelling Headline


When it comes to the best-paid ad headlines I’ve ever seen, every single headline has been problem-solving in some manner, to-the-point, and directly addressed the audience. I.e used “you” as a way to call customers out from their scrolling and “demand” clicks.

Research has proven that there are quite a few “best practices” that bring forth incredible results. These “trends” include:

  1. Questions
  2. How-Tos
  3. Speaking to the Audience Directly
  4. Standard Ads, with no Specific Angle
  5. Numbers-Based

You don’t want to use catchy headlines just for the cute factor. Instead, you want to use research-based information to make an informed decision about what works best.

In this instance, we see that “problem-solving” through questions and how-tos are both popular and effective headline narratives.

And more importantly, numbers-based headlines are actually one of the most effective methods, which definitely makes them something to consider when you’re working on ad copy and headlines.

However, not all numbers are created perfectly equal, which means slapping just a number on the front of your headline won’t get you anywhere.

One effective way to use numbers in your headline is to illustrate ways you’ve helped your clients in the past. Something like “A Million Copies Sold” or “We managed a 3,000,0000 ad budget in 2020”. These headlines work because they’re illustrating a problem solved, as well as the services you provide for your clients. All in one headline!

#2 Using Emotional Words to Your Advantage

This is HUGE. If you’re not sure what an emotional word is, it’s particular words that bring forth emotions within their audience. Words that surprise, delight and capture.

By utilizing emotional words in your headline, you’ll be able to call forth particular feelings from your audience and encourage them to purchase your products and services without ever making a demand.

To help you out on your paid social advertising copy journey, we’ve put together a shortlist of tools you can utilize to write better headlines and find out what counts as “emotional” when it comes to your headlines.

  1. CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer
  2. WPCurve’s 400+ Words to Trigger Emotional Responses in Advertisement
  3. Emotional Trigger Words to Use in Advertising Copy for better Click-Through Rates

#3 Using Negativity to Your Advantage

I know, I know. This seems like the exact opposite of what you might think works, however, our own research and the research of other prominent social media or digital marketing experts have indicated that using negative words in your headlines and even in the body of your ad copy can have better results on the news feed than using positive words.

Users are constantly being bombarded with a plethora of messages and social media ads, both good and bad. The trick to great advertising is to present a message through your headline that the user will stop to read.

Writing copy that cuts through the noise is anything but simple. Your best approach is going to be writing a headline that follows all the best practices and wait for results.

After you’ve been running ads across multiple social media platforms and can better analyze what’s working and what isn’t, you’ll be able to find out what you should adjust for a better ad campaign and better results.

P.S this is especially effective for Facebook Instant Experience Ads!

Bonus Advertising Copy Headline Trick: Embrace 3-Word Phrases


Don’t be afraid, we promise this hack is just as easy as the last few have been.

When it comes to social media, everyone’s attention spans are a lot shorter than they would be in a face-to-face, physical environment.

When it comes to Facebook ads especially, potential customers can feel invaded upon, not just because of all the “Facebook is spying on me” pixel rumors, but also because your Facebook ad copy, no matter how eloquently worded is showing up in a place where customers expect updates from their family and friends to be.

As this is the case, your narrative has to be on point because you’re not working up from zero, you’re working up from negative ten.

Working with advertising copy on a regular basis has shown us that an effective method for raising our conversion rate, eliminating pain points, and getting customers to visit that landing page is to embrace powerful 3-word phrases.

Some examples of powerful 3-word phrases that can become magical in the face of your target audience include:

  1. “Will make you”
  2. “Feels just like’
  3. “This is why”
  4. “Can we guess”

These phrases are so powerful because it gives the reader a feeling that the ad will have a direct and impactful effect on them.

This can create the possibility of a higher ROI, as well as increase the engagement on your ads, as well as on your page.

Yes, you can’t ever predict with 100% certainty how your audience will react to your headlines, but you can strive for perfection. And that is priceless when it comes to your ROI.

#1 The Text Body

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You want your ads to be compelling, right? The copy itself, the body of the text is another crucial element to ad success.

Getting the body of the text right is both an art and a science. If you want a better ROI and more engagement, your text must be customer-focused.

#2 Ad Types

There are a plethora of advertising copy types, which we’ll look into to get a good idea of what type of ad works best and how you can leverage it for a better ROI and an understanding of your customers.

  • Cause Marketing Copy Tricks

This type of advertising copy is compelling and eye-catching because it hits an emotional point for the potential buyers.

Did you know that 94% of customers are more likely to switch to brands that support a good cause?

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you’re advertising for a non-profit, ads should ALWAYS focus on the cause and NOT your brand. The same is true for images.

  • Event Marketing Copy Tricks

Events: they get people fired up and excited about what lies in store. But how can you make the most of this excitement, or build it higher?

Make sure to include essential information within your advertising copy for ads like these, so that customers don’t have to guess about what to expect.

Include value that customers can glean from the event.

Is it free? Will there be any awesome takeaways? Key speakers? What about accommodations, or food?

These are all things customers will see and get pumped about, which drives engagement. (And ticket sales!)

  • New Product Marketing Tricks

This one is always a lot of fun because you get to draw attention to something new and exciting that customers can take advantage of.

When it comes to advertising copy on this front, sticking to the “problem solving” or customer-centric language methods for grabbing the attention of your target audience is a great tactic.

Don’t forget that you can always adjust in the future as you find things and words that trigger better responses, as well. Nothing is set in stone!

#3 Tips for Success


We’ve been through the ad types, we know what words tend to elicit better responses and we know that advertising copy is both a science and an art.

However, we still haven’t gone over a lot of the basic rules that ultimately will lead to success in terms of advertising copy, so we’re going to dig into that next.

  1. Being relevant
  2. Benefits-Focused
  3. GRAMMAR and Format

These are by far some of the most important things that need your attention from the beginning when it comes to advertising copy.

Relevancy and Your Advertising Copy

Relevance is more than being in the right place at the right time and in front of the right audience.

Sure, it has lots to do with those things, but the most important factors when it comes to relevancy is:

  1. Being aware of the current location of your customers within the buying cycle and writing effective ad copy accordingly,
  2. Knowing WHERE your customers are coming from, (how did they find your ad?)
  3. Know who you’re talking to! (Are your customer's health nuts? Fitness gurus? Gamers? Your language will be completely different in any of these scenarios!)

Staying relevant on each individual social network is also wildly important. Customers on Pinterest are going to look different than those on Twitter or Instagram, and your ad copy should reflect that.

Advertising Copy Should be Benefits-Focused

Did you know that advertising premium products with the price tag already visible are actually a great tactic for a better ROI when it comes to ppc ad copy for social media advertising?

I know, it sounds nuts, but the truth is that by giving your audience a glimpse at what to expect, they won’t be shocked when they click on the ad and then drive your ad cost up with no return.

Pre-qualifying your customers by letting them know what they’ll be paying and encouraging them by adding tactics like “buy now and get free delivery by X date” can increase ROI through a benefits focus.

Your audience wants to know exactly how your services and products can benefit them, so let them know.

Communicate Your Humanity Through Your Advertising Copy

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There’s a stark difference between friendly in-person communication and online service. Let’s face it: it just won’t be the same.

However, you can make your online communication less cold and more human by communicating warmth and care through your advertising copy.

By showing your customers that you’re a real and kind human being on the other side, you’re giving them something to relate and connect with, which means they’ll be more likely to consider your products and services.

A big part of this comes from the way you format your advertising copy and execute the writing. Is your grammar sub-par? Could the formatting use some improvement? Getting serious about your online advertising copy and making it a point to be creative, grammatically correct, and well-worded can go a long, long way.

Frequently Asked Questions

We know you probably have a million questions, (and if we don’t answer them all here, you can always reach out to us and we can help!) So today, we’re going to do our best to explore at least a few of the biggest questions around social advertising copy and get you some answers.

Where Can I Get Creativity for Successful Advertising Copy?

These days especially, there’s an emphasis on being especially “creative” in terms of your advertising copy and marketing campaigns.

However, sometimes being afraid about whether you’re being creative or not can actually kill any creativity you might be cultivating.

When it comes to brainstorming ideas, taking walks, going places, keeping a notepad on you at all times, (creativity always strikes when you least expect it!), and sitting down with your team for brainstorm can be an eye-opening experience.

We purposely allow and even encourage all members of our team to get involved in our brainstorm meetings because sometimes the people you least expect have the biggest and brightest ideas.

Can Good Social Advertising Copy Help My Business?

Absolutely! If your goal is to drive sales, get engagement, followers and otherwise draw attention to your brand, the answer 99.9% of the time is a definite yes.

Curious about how to get started when it comes to social paid advertising? Click the link and let’s get learning. 😎

Can Social Advertising Make Me More Money Than a Marketing Campaign?

The answer? Possibly. But in our opinion, these things go hand-in-hand and shouldn’t be done as a single answer to more sales. In the long run, you’ll have much better results by implementing a marketing campaign and a paid advertising campaign together than one or the other by itself.

Is Having a Call-to-Action on my Ads Actually Important?

YES! Call to Action are ultimately vital to the success of your ads. While you may get some positive results even without them, you won’t get nearly the same kind of results without them.

Need More Social Advertising Copy Help?

We’ve managed massive multi-million dollar advertising campaigns for our clients in the last year. And as a result, we’ve fine-tuned the key ingredients of an ideal ad campaign for clients in a variety of different industries.

Do you need a social media advertising copy expert to point you in the right direction or manage your social media marketing and advertising campaigns? Maybe you’d rather just oversee the process and have no part in it.

However you want it, we can manage it. Our social media advertising copy and strategy experts are constantly finding bigger and better methods that lead to better ROIs, more engagement, and greater end results.

So what are you waiting for? Let’s take your social media advertising to the next level. Get in touch TODAY!

Keith Kakadia

I am a native of New Orleans, LA with a passion for social media marketing, entrepreneurship, and making new connections. I enjoy the opportunity to work with amazing individuals and brands everyday.

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