Hiding in the corners beneath the bold headlines, under the compelling benefit statements, and around the action-packed verbs are bountiful opportunities to inject your brand with personality. A recent trend is "nooks & crannies copy" as I'm calling it, because it often pops up in unexpected places. Here are three examples: 1. Yahoo Chat
While it may be difficult to see in this picture, Yahoo has brilliantly introduced humor into their chat feature. Between the conversation above and the text box below is the status report indicating if the other person is typing a message. However, instead of a plain and boring "Apple123 is typing a message....", yahoo has sprinkled clever anecdotes such as:
- Apple123 really should learn to type with more than two fingers...
- STAND BY FOR A MESSAGE FROM APPLE123
- Apple123 is about to drop knowledge...
- Apple123 is hammering out a wicked comeback...
- Bate your breath, Apple123 is typing...
among a plethora of others.
While not directly selling anything, introducing conversational wit in this unexpected place allows Yahoo! to showcase their brand's personality. It gives the user the impression that Yahoo! is a fun, easy to work with company that doesn't take itself to seriously.
2. Verizon Wireless
Located directly before a purchasing decision, this otherwise overlooked loading page has been transformed into a mini flash ad that reinforces the product's effectiveness right before the sale. The ad shows an animated film strip loaded with a series of technological leaps. The last one, "From Dial Up...To High Speed Internet" subtly suggests "You wouldn't live in a cave, would you? Then why on earth would you have dial up?" An effective suggestion, I would imagine.
3. You Need a Budget (YNAB)
Jesse Mecham, the developer of YNAB, tells the story of how he and is wife needed a personal budgeting system. They developed a simple excel spreadsheet that over the years has developed into a sophisticated yet user-friendly budgeting tool. While the site has been dramatically improved on the design side, Jesse still maintains the heartfelt honesty in his conversational copy, as evidenced by the "Download Update" screen for his product. He is an accountant, and occasionally a grammatical error will pop up in his copy, but it doesn't seem to matter when it comes to the bottom line. His conversational style is obviously effective due to the growth and endorsements of YNAB.
Three Tips to Make Your Copy Conversational - by Mila Sidman
The Right Way to Write Sales Copy - by Anthony Vicenza