Copywriting Swipe Files: Create Yours in 5 Simple Steps

Are you looking for proven ideas to sell your products and services? Learn how to create your first copywriting swipe files today.

If you want to tell a compelling story, you need to have a source of inspiration. Sometimes, the most challenging part of writing is getting started. A swipe file can help you do that. So regardless of whether you are looking for help with content marketing, email marketing, social media marketing, or even a new short story, you need to have a set of swipe files that can help you generate ideas. 

Many people forget is that the most successful copywriters actually get inspiration from other areas. For example, you may come across sales letters, Facebook ads, or landing pages that give you ideas for new headline formulas, email subject lines, and other important parts of your marketing strategy.

Do you take a screenshot when you see something that can serve as one of your top templates? Instead of trying to keep up with these images, use swipe files instead! Learn how to get the most out of a copywriting swipe file!

Materials Needed

Copywriting swipe files

If you want to overcome copywriting mistakes, are looking for new story ideas, or sales hooks, take advantage of swipe files. Fortunately, you don’t need a lot of materials to do this either.

If you want to create swipe files, the materials you need include:

  • You need to have access to the internet so you can take a look at new materials.
  • You need to have a computer or a phone you can use to store those materials.
  • You should have a folder system you can use to keep everything organized.

Most importantly, remember that plagiarism is unethical. Therefore, you should store these as examples, not identical copies. Now, what do you need to keep in mind if you want to get the most out of your swipe file?

Step 1: What Type of Copy Do You Need?

First, you need to think about what type of copy you need. For example, if you are looking for new ideas that can help you write about sports, you don’t want to save many articles from politics. This is not going to help you.

A few files you might need include:

  • An email newsletter you can send out to your employees.
  • Social media updates you can post to your customers and clients.
  • New ideas for videos or podcasts you can share with your audience.

To find good ideas for your swipe files, try to target resources in a similar industry. You should also target organizations that have similar goals to your own. This will help you find files that are relevant to your needs.

Step 2: Identify Copy That Immediately Grabs Your Attention

Today, people have shorter attention spans than they ever have in the past. Therefore, as you look at different options for your swipe files, keep a few critical points in mind. They include:

  • Is there a tagline that grabs your attention?
  • Is there a call to action that clearly explains what you want to do next?
  • Is the content easy to read?
  • Is the content short enough that you don’t end up picking up your phone to look for something else to do?

You need to find a copy that your audience will love. If you keep these questions in mind, you’ll have an easier time narrowing down options for your swipe files. 

Step 3: Organize Your Swipe File

Copywriting swipe files
You should have a way to keep your files organized then, divide the content into folders you can access later

As you start to identify copy that you enjoy, you’ll need a reliable tool to store it. For example, you may come across Facebook ads that you really like. Then, you may come across Instagram pages that you really enjoy as well. Finally, you might even run into some magazine articles or newspaper clippings that you want to save for later.

All of this content is different, and it will serve different purposes. Therefore, you should have a way to keep it organized. You may want to use Google Drive or Dropbox. A personal Zettelkasten can work too. Find a tool that will work well for your specific needs. Then, divide the content into folders you can access later. 

Step 4: Tag the Content Accordingly

As you start to put the files into folders, you should tag the content accordingly. That way, you’ll have an easier time pulling it up for later. If you want to make it easy to pull up the swipe file, use tags that indicate the type of copy, the industry, and when you found it. This way, you don’t have to worry about opening multiple folders to find the content later. Instead, you can use the search feature to pull up that specific file when you are ready to work with it.

Step 5: Create Original Copy

Finally, the last step is to use that content to create new, original content for your purposes. Maybe you want to write a new story. Perhaps you are looking to enhance your social media marketing campaign. Regardless, you need to use that content as a source of inspiration. Again, you don’t want to plagiarize that content. You want your content to be original. Whether you are writing a new podcast, creating an email marketing chain, or publishing a new blog post, you can use your swipe files to help you. 

Keep in mind that you can also save your existing work for use in your swipe file. For example, you might have an idea for another piece as you publish the existing one. Just place it in your swipe file. Then, come back to it later. You could use it for another piece.

Final Word on Copywriting Swipe Files

These are just a few of the top steps you should keep in mind if you want to get the most out of your copywriting examples. Creating high-converting content can be challenging, and having a swipe file can dramatically improve your copywriting skills, much like reading a good copywriting book. Whether you want to create a direct mail marketing campaign, new pop-ups, or even print ads, you can use copywriting swipe files to help you. You can even create high-quality sales copy for your sales pages.

There are plenty of swipe file examples out there. I particularly like Marketing Examples. That said, you should have plenty of swipe folder options to keep your content organized. Then, revisit your content regularly, overcome writer’s block, and improve your SEO campaign with attractive content.

FAQs About Copywriting Swipe Files

Can I copy something I see in my swipe file?

You should never copy something directly. Plagiarism is only going to get you in trouble. Furthermore, your website could get dinged in SEO rankings. Instead, you need to use those examples to create original content. Think about a way you can put a new spin on something you come across. What do you think your audience would enjoy? This is one of the best ways to get the most out of your swipe file.

Can I share my swipe file with other people?

Yes! If you have other people on your marketing team, you might want to share your bank with them. The more people who pitch in, the more options you have to work with.