10 Tips on how to write a text ad

10 Tips on how to write a text ad

Here are a few pointers on how to write a a text ad that will have you feeling less frustrated.

We all know that the trend of marketing today is focused on content marketing, having a social media strategy and of course making sure that you have a responsive website that is mobile friendly .

While we need to learn these important skills, the reality is that we also need to know how to write a text ad as free online advertising sites are alive and well. Maybe more important than that, this form of marketing is very effective – if it is done right!

For many marketers , learning how to write a text ad is a challenge, it can be frustrating and many people give up and I can’t blame them!


frustrated humor

When you think about writing ads either for the big search engines ( Yahoo, Bing and Google) and the various free advertising sites such a Craigslist, Adlandpro, Kijiji, it is helpful to read and understand the guidlines as they will all be a bit different.
When it comes to knowing how to write a text ad then the acronym

is still one of the core concepts to writing an ad that will create sales is important. Instead of going into detail about AIDA, I did write a post about AIDA Formula that you should go read as I go into a lot more detail on how to make this simple writing technique work for you.


advertising cloud

Other Tips on how to write a text ad

1. If you are using a landing page then of course people are expecting certain content – Be sure that your ad delivers! Keep your promise

2. I was talking to my daughter a while back about advertising ( I’m looking to get another computer) and I was asking her which free online advertising venue was the best. She said something curious ” mom, the best free online ad place is Craigslist in these parts, for some reason the others don’t work as well” – who knew?
This got me thinking about audiences! You need to know who your audience is – so it may sound obvious, but write to your target audience.  To me that  means breaking the keywords into similar groups ( themes) and then writing  ads to those specific groups. Try highlighting something different for each group you post to.

3. When you write a good text ad, formatting is very important!
It may sound obvious, but you would be surprised by how many people forget this important factor.
Here is a good check list to help you with formatting

– Use proper spelling ( no abreviations please)
– Check your grammar! If you need help with this here is a tool that i was recently told about a tool that will be useful called AutoCrit.
(While this particular tool is good for any content or fiction writer, I also tried it on a few ads and as long as there are 200 characters in the ad, you will get interesting results)
Camel-Cap your words. What is camel capping you ask – quite simply it means capitalizing the first letter of each major word in a string of words. Obviously you want to avoid excessive capitalization or all Caps
– Use the right punctuation, typically that means using the period, but never forget that using such punctuations as question marks or exclamation marks can be very useful in your ad copy.

4. Be sure to include pricing and promotions.
Understand that people go online to search for all kinds of things for different reasons including making a decision about something they might be wanting to buy or getting more informations about a product or service. Give people what they need to make a good decision!

5. Instead of thinking of calls to action, when you write a text add think about how you are going to empower a potential customer to take action. It’s a different mind set, but one that I feel will have you thinking differently.
So how can you empower a person to take an action? Use specific kinds of words such as “call me/ contact me”; “sign up” “try it for free”. If you are looking for other powerful ways to empower a person to take action, then I suggest that you read 50 Powerful Call To Action Phrases by Jessica Swanson

6. Target those Keywords! Remember that you are writing a text ad for a person! Be as specific as you possibly can when you write that text ad. Here is an example that might be of use. I want to find a place that sells samosas ( I happen to love samosas) How am I going to search for this? Would I type in something like ” East indian food in Maple Ridge” or would I type in ” Samosas in Maple Ridge” I know for myself I am going to type in words that have the best chance to get me to those samosa. The lesson here is to think of what a person is looking for and keep relevant

7. When you write a text ad, it is not necessary to use superlatives. I know that you want people to know that you have the “best” product in history or that you are number one (#1). Unless you an back those statements with facts and figures, don’t do it!
You want people to trust you, so keep your text ad real.

8. This may sound obvious, but please be sure to identify what the text ad is about. Translate identify the product or the company name. Adding to this I would also say, be sure that you be sure the display URL goes to the right place. For some odd reason people think they can trick others to click on a URL that will take them to someplace where they really do not want to go and then expect to make a sale. I don”t get it personally, it sure will not help you get that sale and worse, people are not going to trust you are they. Lesson learned – its just not worth deceiving people. Keep it clean and honest!

9. You are not writing on Facebook or any other social network, keep the gimmicky use of numbers, letters, symbols etc out of the text ad. Not only is it annoying to people, but in some cases this is a good way to have your text ad denied. It’s just not worth it!

10. An important consideration when you write a text ad is knowing how to track that ad.
There are many reasons for tracking your text ad and its not just paid text ads that you need to think about, but also for the free text ads or ( dare I say your content marketing?) There are many places that you can learn about ad tracking ( I typed in “learn how to track your ads and trust me you will be shown all kinds of information about ad tracking)
While many people will think Google in learning how to track ads, I am also going to suggest a different company. It’s called ClixTac which is based on the freeium business model. I think for the new marketer it is well worth the effort to check out their free service and of course if you like it you can always upgrade.
On their free service this is what you will get:

Basically, while your account is free, each tracker will expire 7 days after it is created and will need to be replaced. All trackers are limited to 100 clicks each and banners will have a limit of 500 impressions each. Upgrading to either a premium or professional account will remove those limitations and enable more features. Plus, any trackers that have already expired or reached a limitation will become live again.


The fact is Text ads are the simplest version of the online advertising one can do, but understanding how to write a text ad seriously needs thought to create an advertising that will create sales.

How our you creating your text ads, how how are they working for you and what tips would you offer others that would be helpful to others
As always – if you found this blog post useful, then please share it with your other marketing friends and help them get ahead!


Bonus thoughts

Here are just a few more things to think about

a)   many ad sites will allow you to use an image – be sure that the image you use will match your ad message.

b) When using an image make sure it reflects your brand and it has to incite emotion ( put thought into those images!)

c) when writing your text ads, even if you are presenting different aspects of your product to different readers, its important to keep to the same “tone” as that is how you will be recognized and recognition is part of branding “you” especially if you are an affiliate marketer

d) Sometimes using tools can at the very least give you good ideas on what to write when creating  a text ad and here are a couple that might be of use to you.

Text Ad Template for Google Adwords

Banner Text Advertising Wizard



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