Six Tips for Writing Technical Product Copy


“If you could taste words, most corporate websites, brochures, and sales materials would remind you of stale, soggy rice cakes: nearly calorie free, devoid of nutrition, and completely unsatisfying.” — Jason Fried

Engineers and technically oriented people normally do not like being sold to, yet they expect a rational case to be made for a technical product or service. If you’re writing about such a product, you need to present a Unique Value Proposition (UVP) that states in a clear and compelling way how the technical product or service will improve the engineer’s job like no other product can.

Given these conditions, what do you need to know when given a technical writing assignment so you can do the best job possible for your client? Here are some simple guidelines to follow that will get you headed in the right direction.

1) Define the topic — Is your copy about offering a solution? Or perhaps defining a system, a product, or a product line? Do you need to differentiate a specific model of that product? Is there a specific industry use or application of that product? What sort of support services will you offer for that product? What kind of accessories are available?

The list of questions goes on, but I think you get the idea. Engineers and technical people have little time (and less tolerance) for extraneous words, so make sure you have the topic clearly defined in your mind before you proceed too far.

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John Torre

I reside in North Brunswick, NJ, with my wife, Lynn, and daughters Kasey, Jaclyn, and Shelly. We also have a 110 pound, lovable Rottie named Leo that keeps us on our toes! When we're not hard at work we enjoy spending weekends at our bungalow down the Jersey shore, or take extended trips to Walt Disney World as members of the Disney Vacation Club. For kicks, I draw on my dominant "right-brain" and play guitar in classic rock and blues bands, act for local plays and independent productions, and enjoy writing creative fiction. I'm a published author in short fiction and stage plays and a graduate of a local community college's Commercial Writer's Certificate Program. After graduating from the program I was selected as an instructor and taught "Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror" writing for 8 years. I enjoy many fine relationships I made with my students to this day.

One Comment

  • I have always been in doubt whether it was worth mentioning every benefit or feature a product has to make an effective sales pitch. I feel very comfortable now that I know you don’t need all of it. Which absolutely makes sense. Some could even be so obvious, you do not have to mention them. It makes your sales letter more targeted and interesting to read in as little time as it could be. Great advise.

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