What Nike Can Teach You About Bullet Points

Answer me this…

Why do copywriters create boring bullet points?

You know what I mean. Many product and service pages (maybe even on your site) highlight statements, like:

  • Imported
  • Washable and stain resistant
  • Comes in green, blue or black

YAWN. Are you still awake?

Me neither.

Here’s the problem:

In a perfect world, bullet points pop off the page and are quick-scan gold. Writing them right can boost conversion rates.

The problem is, most writers write lazy, feature-filled bullet points.

Sometimes, they’ll even make the features sound super-technical to “impress the reader.”

But, that’s going about things the wrong way.

After all, your reader doesn’t care about your “washable” blouse.

She does want an easy-to-care-for blouse that’s wrinkle-free and great for travel.

Features don’t sell. Benefits do.

It’s time to kick feature-oriented bullet points to the curb and write smart benefit-focused bullet points, instead.

Here’s how…

Just do it like Nike

I love to give copywriting credit where credit is due — and Nike has mastered bulleted benefit statements. Their sales copy is fun to read.

Why?

Hardcore runners KNOW their shoe specs. These ultra-athletes care about the latest advances designed to help them run faster, better and with less stress.

So, it would be easy for Nike to geek out in their sales copy and write things like:

  • Contoured Lunarlon insole
  • Laser-cut outsole

Those features sound pretty cool – right?

But, Nike doesn’t take the easy way out. They don’t write lazy bullet points. Instead, they take it one step further and promote the benefit — not the feature.

In this example, they write slightly more copy so they can weave in the features and what’s in it for the customer. When you’re running 30+ miles a week, these are BIG benefits.

Here’s another example of how Nike uses benefit-filled bullet points and subheadlines. Even if you quick-scan the page and barely glance at the content, the benefit statements still pop — even the tiny bullet points under “more details”:

great example of bullet points

 

Nice, eh? Nike is doing it right.

Of course, I have one suggestion…

You can often skillfully weave a keyphrase or synonym into a benefit-rich bullet point. Sometimes, you can even find a long-tail search term you can slide into the bullet point copy.

It wouldn’t work all the time. But, if it made sense for the occasional subheadline or bullet point — cool.

Check your keyphrase research and play with the possibilities!

Here’s one more copywriting tip…

How to build a bullet point sandwich

What’s a bullet point sandwich? I’m glad you asked…

Based on research, folks have found there’s an optimal bullet point order:

  • Most important thing
  • Another good thing, but not the most important
  • Necessary thing(s) to mention (in the middle)
  • Second most important thing.

See how it works? In a bullet point sandwich, your less flashy (but still important) benefits are the filling.

Your BIG benefits – the ones folks will notice first — are the slices of bread (mmmm….carbs) holding everything together.

Tasty, eh?

What do you think?

Does writing bullet points and subheadlines bore you — or do you have fun fleshing out the benefits? What sites offer your favorite copywriting examples? Let me know in the comments!

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.