The Pippin A-Z of Copywriting: You

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in Copywriting

There’s a very quick test you can carry out to find out whether your marketing copy is likely to appeal to your readers.

Count the number of times you say ‘you’ (or its variations) and how many times you say ‘we’ or ‘I’ (or their variations). You should be saying ‘you’ far more often than you say ‘we’.


Because people aren’t interested in you. They’re interested in what you can do for them.

Think about it another way.

Imagine you’re at a party talking to two people you haven’t met before. The first person talks at you, telling you all about how amazing they are and what exciting things they get up to. You can hardly get a word in edgeways and they’re not really interested in anything you have to say. The second person talks to you and is interested in what you have to say. Yes, they tell you about themselves, but only in a way that relevant to you and the conversation you’re having.

Which person are you going to warm to, want to stay in touch with and comment to other people on how nice they seemed?

That’s the difference between using ‘we’ and using ‘you’ in your marketing. When you use ‘we’ you’re the person at the party who only talks about themselves and comes across as an insufferable bore. When you use ‘you’ you’re the person at the party who’s interested in the person they’re talking to and comes across as much more engaging.

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