SSS copywriting framework - ShyamGovind.com

SSS framework: How to write a compelling story in a copy (with example)

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A well-crafted story can make us move. Using a story in a copy is one of the most powerful techniques in copywriting. Today, we are going to see the SSS framework, which ensures your story in the copies is impeccable. Let’s read further to know more.

SSS framework is found to be extremely effective in email copies or social media posts, but it can also be used in ad copies and landing pages as well. In the last few blogs, we have already discussed AIDA, PPPP, PAS and BAB copywriting frameworks. In one of the later blogs, I will talk about how to decide which copywriting framework to use and when.

SSS framework stands for Star-Story-Solution. Here is a brief explanation of the SSS copywriting formula:

  1. Star: Introduce the main character who is the “star” of the story. The star should be extremely relatable to the target audience.
  2. Story: Walk the reader through the frustrations that the star goes through. Talk about the emotions the star experiences. Make the audience empathize.
  3. Solution: Talk about how the star solved the problem once and for all. The solution is what you are trying to sell through the copy. Prompt the reader to act and take the solution.

This is, in many ways, similar to the BAB copywriting framework. The core difference is the storytelling method used in SSS.

Let us now look at it in more detail:

S – Star in SSS formula

The copy begins with the introduction of the star. The star must be extremely relatable to the target audience. The goal is to make the audience see themselves in the star. The star need not be always you. It could also be a customer or just another person you know.

The star should be going through the same problem that the audience experiences. A problem that your offering will solve incredibly well.

In the example I picked below, the star is a student at this Basketball training academy. The copy introduces him in the first few lines and gives a sneak peak of what is about to come in the story – “We’re proud to see how far he has come.”

Source: Brendanaw

S – Story

The story is the core of the copy. Here you talk about how the “the star” encountered various problem and the emotions he went through. Note that these should be the problems your product/service can solve. Make the reader relate to the star even more.

In our example, the story is about how the student was just a normal guy with no special skills. This will relate to a large segment of the target audience. It further talks about how he knew nothing about Basketball when he joined.

Source: Brendanaw

S – Solution

Finally, the story must conclude with the success that “the star” experienced with your product/service offering.

In the example below, you can see that the copy talks about how Rico’s attitude and the training made him a success story in just one year!

Source: Brendanaw

Finally the copy must end with a clear CTA on what the reader should do if he/she is convinced.

That’s it. This is the SSS framework to write a compelling story in your copy.

Conclusion

The SSS framework is extremely handy when you wish to tell any story to your audience. It can also be used very effectively during a nurturing sequence.

As you may have noticed, for the SSS framework to work, you must understand the customer pain point extremely well. Unless the problem and the emotions the customer goes through are on point, the story will not sell.

If you are experimenting with it for the first time, you could ask your audience to respond to you with their stories. This will give you a validation on how relatable the story was and how to make it better.

There are some good articles on the SSS framework. Here are a few that I loved.

First is the GMass article on using SSS formula in email copywriting. It is a pretty good article. Worth a read.

Another good article is from a copywriter named Tori. She mentions the SSS framework as part of other copywriting frameworks but has explained it well.

Apart from SSS, we have covered a few other frameworks like AIDA, PPPP, PAS, BAB, and FAB. They are worth reading.

Further reading on SG.com

You can check all our copywriting-related blogs here. You will benefit immensely by having some copywriting checklists in place. For eg. the 1-2-3-4 copywriting formula and the Forehead slap method to write more effective copies.

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Until next time,

Shyam


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