How to write better bullets
When optimizing email or website copy of my favorite clients, I often see patterns or common mistakes people make over and over again.
One is wasting precious real estate in their bullet points.
To save time and give your readers a better experience, here’s my guide to writing better bullets.
The most common mistake in writing bullets? Repetition
Sometimes I see copy that looks like this:
Do you long for more turn-on in your marriage?
Do you wish your partner would give you more attention?
Do you want to make out like teenagers again?
Do you want to experience deeper, longer orgasms?
Do you want to feel more pleasure in your daily life?
That's not ideal. It makes our eyes glaze over.
Every single bullet starts with ‘Do you…?’
This is a waste of precious real estate on the page.
The first few words of each sentence (and bullet point) is what people pay most attention to.
Studies have shown that we skim texts before reading deeper, and our attention span is the sharpest at the beginning of the bullet.
If you’d see this on a heat-map, it would look like an F-shape. (I know because my man worked for an eye-tracking start-up.)
Plus, there are too many questions.
Make powerful statements that express empathy instead.
Finally, too much ‘want’ and ‘wish’. Let’s add some variation.
How to fix these writing mishaps
First, show them that you get them.
Instead of bombarding your audience with a bunch of questions, show that you understand them by describing their feelings and problems in great detail.
If you’re not sure, stop writing right now and interview at least 3-5 people (customers, friends, or dream clients you want to help) about their problems and desires. Then use their exact words in your copy.
Next, start your bullets with powerful verbs.
Choose a different one for each bullet, and begin with verbs throughout. Don’t add adverbs or adjectives in some and start with verbs in others. Be consistent.
If you’re lost for words, check out online dictionaries like Wordhippo for countless synonyms.
Finally, be specific.
Instead of making loose statements about more turn-on and pleasure, see if you can translate this into an image they can visualize.
Rather than writing “fall in love with your spouse again”, you could say, “start sexting again like when you first started dating”.
Here’s how all this translates onto the page
You want your ideal client to read your words and think, “OMG, she’s in my head!”
This is how it could look like when applied to your copy:
You’re not in love with your husband anymore, but you still stay.
If this describes you, you…
lie awake at night depressed because you feel like you have a roommate, not a lover
confess to your best friend over coffee that you’re contemplating an affair
cry on the bathroom floor at 2 am because you’re trying to hide your true feelings
stare enviously and for too long at newly-in-love couples in the streets
google for divorce lawyers at the office using an incognito window, just in case
See what I did there?
Each bullet starts with a bang (a.k.a. a powerful verb).
It paints a scene clients can visualize (and recognize themselves in). The more original detail you can add to your writing, the more interesting it becomes.
And there’s no repetition, so no boredom that makes our eyes glaze over.
Go and apply these tips to your copy.
Then write and tell me which one resonated most for you! I’d love to hear from you.