Empathetic Copywriting

Would you like a “formula” for powerful copywriting? Copywriting that sells your products and services?

I'd like to give you the “magic formula”  for writing web site and ad copy that sells.

Magic Copywriting Formula

I'd like to… but I have some disappointing news: there isn’t one.

“But Ray,” I hear you say, “Haven’t you yourself taught several different copywriting ‘formulas’?”



They are not “magic” and they don’t work universally.

What a formula can do is give you a basic structure on which to hang your “argument” (your logic for why someone should buy your stuff).

What the formula cannot do is: somehow magically compel people to buy something they don’t really want or need.

More importantly, what a copywriting formula can’t do is teach you the fears and aspirations of your readers, so that your persuasion power comes from the point of intersection between your audience’s needs/desires and your product’s features/benefits.

Only you, as an empathetic copywriter, can do that.


Ray Edwards is a world-renowned copywriter and communications strategist, writing for some of the most powerful voices in leadership and business including New York Times bestselling authors Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen (Chicken Soup for the Soul) and Tony Robbins. Ray is a sought-after speaker and author, hosts a popular weekly podcast, and blogs at RayEdwards.com.

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  • Good point Ray. This reminds me of what Eugene Schwartz wrote in his book Breakthrough Advertising (pg. xiii), “…no formula works twice. Each and every formula is simply the written solution to a particular problem that occurred in the past. Change even one part of that problem, and you need an entirely different formula. That’s why memorizing theories won’t make you a scientist, or studying charts won’t make you a market wizard, or rewriting somebody else’s headlines won’t make you a copywriter.”

  • Thanks for writing this, Ray. It’s a good reminder for those who think copywriting is a methodical act that uses ‘plug-and-play’ formulas to magically send sales soaring. Formulas can create some good bones for a piece, but when it comes to crafting a message that truly resonates with the target audience – that is dependent upon the copywriter’s talent, understanding of the product and market, and yes, their ability to empathize with their readers. 

  • Copywriting is the act of writing copy (text) for the purpose of advertising or marketing a product, business, person, opinion or idea. I think writing impressively can sell anything in the world.

  • Alan

    As I see it, taking the time to build a “3-D model” of your perfect prospect, understanding his core desires as they relate to your product or service, and imaging yourself in his shoes form the foundation for creating empathy in copy. You’re right, first there must be a need or desire for the benefits a product or service embodies or your message will surely fall on deaf ears. Crafting copy that resonates with your perfect prospect using the right medium to deliver it will give you the best chance for success.

    • You are precisely correct. Building a great “3-D model” also makes the copy much easier to write.

  • Ray when I heard you talk about writing copy from your ideal customer’s perspective I immediately became a more effective writer. You have a wonderful ability to make complex ideas simple. Thank you!