C = Cameron Patterson
L = Logan Smith
C â€“ So, I’m here with Logan, we’re talking about copywriting; the business of Copywriting. Why do people need copywriting?
L â€“ Well, there’s different types of copywriting. What I’m passionate about and what I am doing is SEO copywriting, for websites. A lot of people get that confused, they think it’s paid advertising. But, what I do is website copy. So, it’s kind of like a ‘foundation’ on your website that makes Google like you. The idea is, everybody makes this big website and just leave it from there. They don’t really apply the tools that they need to that website to make Google like you. I think the really important word: “you need to make GoogleÂ like you!”.Â That’s what SEO copywriting does. What I do, is I write copy for all types of businesses from any industry, and I give you words that are relative to your business and relative to your industry but also words that are strung together in a very precise way to make Google like you.
C â€“ For the benefit of our viewers out there, your Australian accent has an interesting lilt to it. Can you tell us where that came from?
L â€“ [Laughs] I’m Canadian, I was born in Canada. I moved here when I was 18, so I have over 10 years of being an Australian. So, I often forget [laughs] that I am Canadian.
C â€“ Can you tell us about your recent life, as in your recent venture that you have… you had a magazine.
L â€“ Yes.
C â€“ I’m so impressed. That you’ve… not everyone has a glossy magazine. That looks fantastic, because I’ve seen a few of them. A magazine is a cyclical industry isn’t it? Sometimes things go in and out of Vogue, but for a while there you had a magazine. Well, tell us about the magazine. It has a fantastic name, that I love. And, I hope you are going to continue using that name, because it’s a great name.
L â€“ I copy write now, so I offer all of my services through ProvokeÂ which was the name of the magazine. It’s very much mine. I’m very proud of it.
C â€“ Have you got it protected? Trademarked and all that sort of stuff?
L â€“ Yes. Yes, I own it [laughs].
C â€“ Very good! It’s a fantastic name!
L â€“ Thank you! I operate all of my businesses under Provoke. With the idea being, that I provide “thought-provoking content”. But, I started a magazine a few years ago. It was Queensland-based, and it was a lifestyle magazine. I had it in newsagents across Queensland. I was very passionate about it; it was very exciting. And then, it just sort of reached a point that print was… well print was dying. Sadly, though I love it, it is sort of a struggle. It just reached that point where I was fighting just to get enough advertising to pay for the print run, just because print is not where it used to be.
C â€“ That’s amazingly courageous. I’m in awe of you doing all it took to make a magazine. That’s a serious thing. It was a good looking magazine. They are now collectors items, which I think you were referring to that they are now collectors items [laughs].
L â€“ Yes. [laughs] They are collected in my home now [laughs].
C â€“ I want to talk about another thing, which is you were talking about how a consumer might assess a business on the presentation of things that aren’t its product. If you know what I mean? So, a consumer will assess a business based on other things. The things around the edges. Like the way an apostrophe is in the right place.
L â€“ Definitely. I think a lot of people don’t know, when you read a sentence if there is something wrong with the way that sentence is strung together â€“ even if you can’t recognise what’s wrong in it â€“ you’ll still probably pause at the end of that sentence. You’ll have this feeling like it just didn’t read right. You might not be able to say “there should have been an apostrophe there”. I can. I can tell you exactly where the apostrophe should have been, or where the comma, or the anything should have been that’s missing from the sentence.. But you will still have paused, and that’s the problem. You will have stoped what you’re doing.
C â€“ Well you should have.
L â€“ [Laughs] But, even if it’s for a moment. People are swayed by moments. I’m going to open up a website page and if it takes too long, I’m going to move on. If you image takes too long to load, I’m going to move on. If your sentence doesn’t read right and I’ve paused, I’m going to move on. That’s it…
L â€“ I think we mentioned the other day, walking up to a bank that has their sign out the front and it’s a little bit askew. Well OK, I’m probably going to go the bank just next door to it. Because if my perception… I may notÂ thinkÂ that, I may not think “oh, the sign is askew, I don’t want to go in there”. But, my perception immediately is, if you don’t care about the way that you have presented your business, well if I’m walking into a bank will you care about my money. You don’tÂ thinkÂ that, not logically. I’m not standing on the street going “you’re not going to care about my money”. But, I’m going to look to the right and see something that does have a correctly laid sign and go “oh, well they look well presented”, and probably be more inclined to go there. And that’s the thing! If your website is written badly, what’s to stop me from going to the person who does care about the way their sentence is structured and does care about the way they have presented their business, because they have made me like them.
L â€“ Google wants to like you. Google doesn’t want to hate you, Google doesn’t want to put you on the 20th page and Google wants you to do the right things. So, if you Google ‘Google’s Content Guidelines‘, there is a whole link system of everything you should be doing in your content.
C â€“ So, there’s some science behind this? Or, there’s some structure behind this? And where you fit in, is you talk to the distracted business owner who just says “I need a thing. Can you go and do a thing for me?” With about that much instruction. Then you go and look at his business, and with your knowledge of those Google guidelines you put something together.
L â€“ Definitely. Sometimes people have content, they’ll have a couple paragraphs here and there on their website. Even if they just say “look I have that, it has my message in it. I just need it to work and I need Google to like it.” I can run with that. I can go, “OK, do you have time for a 10 minute phone conversation?” If they don’, I’m still OK with that. It’s your time. A lot of people hire me because they don’t want to do all of that stuff. They don’t want to copy write. They don’t have the time to sit down and think about eight pages of website or 15 pages of website. So, I can take what you have â€“ or even if there is nothing, if you’ve launched something new â€“ and I can plug in Google’s Content Guidelines.Â Google, all of a sudden, will take notice. It’s just such a lost asset, that people need to know! You have a website, which means you have already done the hard work. You just need to make it work for you.
L â€“ Think about the words that you write. As a business, everything that you write or everything that you can write has value to you. Whether it’s print or online. Some people even have little print magazines that they hand out. Like Zaraffa’s, they have a little magazine. Put it online. Or, reengage it. Take an article from it and put it online. Call it a blog; call it anything. But, everything that you do as a business â€“ whether you think it or not â€“ usually involves words, and they have value. They have more value than you know. I think that’s a huge thing that businesses should know.