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Karon Thackston

Karon Thackston is owner of Marketing Words, Inc. a full-service copywriting company specializing in search engine copywriting. She is also publisher of the long-standing free ezine, Business Essentials. Karon is author and publisher of the popular Step-by-Step Copywriting Course, an e-course designed to teach sound and highly-effective copywriting techniques - including search engine copywriting techniques. With over 20 years of copywriting experience, Karon has contributed to the search engine and sales success of companies large and small including Gortons Seafood, Third Sphere Hosting and more.

It's What You Say AND How You Say It, Part 2 of 2

by Karon Thackston - In Part 1 of this series, I introduced you to Announce It!, an online candy-bar-wrapper manufacturer that was seeking professional help with their search engine copywriting. The primary problems were that the copy did not convey a sense of excitement or answer all the questions customers might have.

It's What You Say AND How You Say It, Part 1 of 2

The old cliché is wrong. All our lives we've heard, "It's not what you say, but how you say it." That may occasionally be true, but for the most part it's what you say AND how you say it.

What’s the Best Use of Keyphrases?

There has been a debate about the use of keywords for years. Many SEO copywriters will tell you that using keyphrases in their entirety is the best practice for getting high rankings. Others insist it really doesn't matter — that as long as all the individual words within the phrase are used, your copy will do its job....

Keyword Use That Goes Beyond the Search Engines

It seems to be a single-sided debate. When you mention keyword use, all thoughts normally go to the search engines. Copywriting, however, is more about your human visitors than it is the engines. If you want truly effective SEO copy, you'll take time to learn that keyword use goes beyond the search engines....

Copywriting Makeover: Value vs. Vision - Part 2 of 2

In Part 1 of this series, we discovered that explaining the value your products offer is only one part of the copywriting process. Creating a visual image is another. While Wholesalers USA knew their target customers better than most companies do, they needed help with two areas: optimizing their copy for the search engines and incorporating visual imagery....

Copywriting Makeover: Value vs. Vision - Part 1 of 2

There's no doubt. Wholesalers USA knows their customers. They've spent the time digging through log files to analyze site stats. They've spoken with customers on the phone and emailed with them. They've used client feedback to develop new products that have taken off like a rocket. Wholesalers USA understands the importance of giving the customer what s/he wants. What they needed some help with was translating that message into natural-sounding SEO copy that would deliver qualified traffic....

Copywriting With Google's Dynamic Keyword Insertion Tool

In case you're unfamiliar with dynamic keyword insertion (DKI), it's a feature of Google's AdWords program. It is often used for large campaigns in order to automatically insert the keyword into the headline of an ad. Truly, it's a lifesaver for many pay-per-click (PPC) ad managers who have to stay on top of thousands of ads every day....

My SEO's Good. Now Should I Work On Conversions?

It happens more frequently than you might think. People spend a lot of time and money getting their sites ranked highly in the search engines, but give little or no attention to converting their visitors into paying customers. What's their logic? From what copywriting prospects tell me, "I wanted to get my rankings in place before working on my conversions....

Online Shoppers Ask for More Detailed Copywriting

Allurent, Inc. gave the following details from their Online Customer Experience Survey. A total of 82% of consumers who participated said having a frustrating online shopping experience would make them less likely to revisit a retailer's site. That's expected. The survey continued by saying if the experience improved, visitors would be open to buying more from the offending sites....

3 Simple Rules for Creating an Effective USP

Most business owners and managers don’t understand how to create a truly unique selling proposition (USP). There are specific criteria to consider in order to get your message across clearly and succinctly....

Copywriting Makeover: Facts vs. Fantasy (Part 2 of 2)

In Part 1 of this article series we discovered the challenge faced by the copy of Julie’s Jewels Moissanite page. The original copy (PDF) was too factual for visitors to relate to effectively. I outlined the problems and the proposed solutions. Let’s continue as I show you the rewrite and the results....

Copywriting Makeover: Facts vs. Fantasy (Part 1 of 2)

One of the hardest things to learn as a copywriter is which focus or approach to take with copy. There are general guidelines to follow, but experience will tell you that there are almost as many exceptions as there are rules....

Opening Sentences That Close the Sale

Your job, as the copywriter, is to entice them into each segment so they will consume as much of your copy as possible. Take your cue from Reader's Digest. They crank out issue after issue exceptional opening lines for their articles that engage then hook readers. What happens next? The reader is pulled into the story full force....

Will Longer Keyphrases Hinder the Effectiveness of Your Copy?

Longer search phrases are the natural progression of the Internet population boom. As more and more information is placed online, it becomes increasingly difficult to find exactly what you're looking for. The best advice I can give is to break up some of the mentions of longer keyphrases....

The Purpose and Practice of Writing Successful SEO Articles

There is such a barrage of worthless articles floating around the Net these days. Keyword-stuffed, useless ramble that was obviously written with the sole intent of attempting to rank highly. Striving for top rankings is not a bad thing, but the purpose of writing SEO articles is threefold: provide information, rank highly when used on your site and increase link popularity....

The 2 Most Common Mistakes When Writing With Keywords

SEO copywriting has begun to get a poor reputation all due to carelessness. How so? Because too many people claim to know what they are doing. In reality, they simply shove keywords into copy without any concern for how the copy flows....

Top 10 Through SEO Copywriting

First of all, I'm not a big fan of checking rankings on a regular basis. This experiment began when I noticed the home page of one of my sites was ranking highly for a keyphrase that didnt seem to appear anywhere in the text....

Making It Easy for Customers To Choose You

When customers come to your site, they are looking for a clear reason to buy from you instead of all the other sites. Do you give them a reason? Do you give them several reasons?...

One Product, Three Customers, Three Different Ways To Write

Before assuming that all members of your target audience are alike, take some time to do a little research. Conduct an informal survey, ask questions and talk with customers one on one....

The Best Place to Put SEO Copy on Your Web Page

It seems like a funny question to me, but it gets asked a lot. "Where should the SEO copy go on my Web page?" That question gets asked so much because there are several pieces of out-of-date information, rumors and myths with regard to text placement, when writing SEO copy....

Copywriting Makeover: The Value of Being Crystal Clear: Part 2 of 2

In Part 1 of this series, you were introduced to Provider Watch, a company whose site copy was a bit confusing. While they had a wonderful understanding of their target audience and they had absolutely made an emotional connection, the copy lacked a push toward action on the visitor's part....

Your FAQ Page - A Sales Tool? You Bet!

By using some imagination and salesmanship, you can turn your FAQ page into a highly productive tool that not only gives visitors the information they need, but also encourages more sales!...

Copywriting Makeover: The Value of Being Crystal Clear: Part 1 of 2

Sometimes, despite our best efforts, the message we most want our customers to hear gets lost in a sea of superlatives. The marketer within us takes over and - before we know it - the core focus of the Web page, brochure or flyer becomes blurred....

Copywriting Makeover: Subtle Changes Make A Noticeable Difference Part 2 of 2

The headline needed to evoke feelings of trust for the skeptical and a sense of stability for the hesitant. It also needed to provide an obvious benefit - one that would catch the reader's attention....

Copywriting Makeover: Subtle Changes Make A Noticeable Difference Part 1

Changing a few words in your copy can lead to double-digit increases in conversions. If that sounds like a bunch of hype from an online infomercial, stick around and I'll show you how it's done....

Lower Cost & Increase Conversion of Your Adwords Leads

When you qualify your AdWords leads, you can reduce the click-through rate (CTR) of browsers and help direct only those most interested in your offer to your site. How is it done? By inserting text that will purposely eliminate arbitrary visitors....

What SEO Copywriting Is... and Isn't

SEO copywriting is not the process of writing exclusively for the search engines. It is the process of writing copy to appeal to your visitors, while including elements to help the search engines and your visitors understand what the page is all about....

Are Keywords Destroying the Flow of Your SEO Copy?

Is the flow of your current copy destroyed by keywords? Are you scaring off both the engines and your visitors? One quick check can help you decide....

How To Write Persuasive Subject Lines

Three seconds and 40 characters. That's all you usually have to work with when trying to get and hold the attention of someone reading email. Needless to say, it's vital to make the most of your introduction via the email subject line....

SEO Copywriting Makeover: Finding the Right Trigger

There is at least one trigger for every product or service on the market today. Finding it is the hard part. Once you determine what will set your customers in motion, you've won half the battle....

Your Site Map: Spider Food or Just A Light Snack?

Descriptive site maps work well in attracting and satisfying spiders because they include naturally occurring keywords. They also place keywords in the vicinity of a link that points to the associated page....

Copywriting Makeover: Search Engine-Friendly Can Also Mean Visitor-Friendly

Due to space constraints, page layout requirements or other issues, some site owners hesitate to include SEO copy thinking it will detract from the visitor's experience....

Copywriting Makeover: Know Where Your Customers Are In The Buying Process, Part 1 of 2

Something most people neglect is giving due attention to the buying process as a whole and where your target audience is within that process. Understanding this can oftentimes, make or break the success of your copy....

Press Releases Can Increase Search Engine Positioning

With just a little more effort than you would normally give, your press releases can pull "double duty." Through a push-pull effect, your releases can be pushed toward media outlets for additional exposure, and they can also pull visitors back to your site through the use of search engines. The result? Even after the initial media explosion over your releases takes place, they'll be working to drive traffic to your site and increase your search engine positioning....

Copywriting Makeover: It's Not About YOU, It's About THEM

Take some time now to look back over your copy. Is it company focused? If so, learning to write specifically for your customers can turn your sales around almost immediately....

SEO Writing Strategies for Graphic-Oriented Sites

What do you do if you're a graphic designer, if you sell jewelry, or if you have another site that needs more pictures than copy? Don't despair. There are some strategies that can help you reach a happy medium satisfying both your visitors and the engines....

Theyre Searching So Why Arent They Buying?

There seems to be a common myth regarding site visitors and the buying process these days. I've heard this statement more than a few times over the last several months: 'My visitors find me when they use search engines. They type in the exact keyphrases I'm listed under. So when they get to my site why aren't they buying?' The simple answer is that they aren't ready to buy yet....

Rules, Regs, and Recommendations for Search Engine Copywriting

Copywriting is a primary factor when it comes to achieving good search engine placement. However, many times all that is done is to include keywords in the tags of a page and to include a few keyword mentions. While not extremely difficult, writing for the engines is a little more complicated than that....

An SEO Copywriting Makeover Turning "Not" Into "Hot" Part 2 of 2

In part one of this article series, I outlined a recent project I undertook for a Web site that sells gas logs. The site had a lot of potential, but in its current state the sales orientation of the home page and the keyword saturation were causing less-than-stellar results for the client. My job was to rewrite the index page (from scratch) in order to boost SE rankings and response....

An SEO Copywriting Makeover Turning "Not" Into "Hot" Part 1 of 2

I recently took on a project for a Web site that sells gas logs that I thought would make an interesting case study. As many people ask me what goes through my mind when I write search engine optimized copy, I took this opportunity to make notes as I wrote. I'll now share that information with you so you can make the necessary changes to your own copy....

Case In Point: What You Need To Know About Link Popularity

Debra O'Neil-Mastaler of Alliance Link is here to give us the ins and outs of link popularity and how to ensure your linking strategies accomplish your goals....

A Secret For Discovering What Your Customers Want

Doesn't it drive you crazy that people visit your Web site and then just leave? What are they looking for? What is missing from your site that they need? Here's a free way to find out....

What Are Keywords And What The Heck Do You Do With Them?

As a Web copywriter, I've learned that the words I wrote had a direct bearing on my client's search engine success. That meant I had to write a message that made an emotional connection with the target audience, promoted the product or service AND included the necessary keywords that would help get them good rankings. Whew!...

Nip and Tuck - Three Quick Tricks for Writing SEO Copy

You can have copy that makes sense, provides solutions for your site visitors, and ranks high with the search engines. It's not impossible... it just takes a bit of training and practice. Before long, you'll be tucking keywords in all the right places!...

How To Write Little Tiny AdWords Ads That Bring Giant-Sized Profits

There are two primary factors to succeeding at Google AdWords. The first is getting the right keywords. The second is writing little tiny ads. Neither is all that easy, but they can both be done....



About the Author

Karon Thackston is owner of Marketing Words, Inc. a full-service copywriting company specializing in search engine copywriting. She is also publisher of the long-standing free ezine, Business Essentials. Karon is author and publisher of the popular Step-by-Step Copywriting Course, an e-course designed to teach sound and highly-effective copywriting techniques - including search engine copywriting techniques. With over 20 years of copywriting experience, Karon has contributed to the search engine and sales success of companies large and small including Gortons Seafood, Third Sphere Hosting and more.

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