Translating Customer Interviews Into Effective Copy

How to turn customer interview transcripts into effective copywriting

I’m back again this month with more RC² (Research, Copy & Conversion) tips.

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Today’s tips are focused on translating customer interview insights into high-converting copy.

Let’s dive in!


For the last couple of months, I’ve been working on a rebrand project for a car detailing shop.

Because this is a new-ish brand with dozens (vs hundreds) of customers, I recommended a mix of customer interviews, review mining, and a competitive analysis (these are all research methodologies that can be great if you don’t have a ton of data points).

During the interview process, I used my customer interview template as the foundation for building my interview questions, but I also added a couple of questions that were specific to this particular project. For example:

  • How would you describe your car BEFORE coming in?
  • How would you describe your car AFTER leaving?

Asking specific questions like this can help you capture valuable insights and Voice of Customer data that can be used later in your copy (more on that in a sec).

While crafting your questions, it’s also important to avoid asking the WRONG questions (or phrasing them in leading ways).

If you’d like to learn more about this, I recommend checking out this month’s article from the Nielsen Norman Group (a UX research and consulting firm), which highlights the 6 most common mistakes in drafting interview questions.


One of the big pros of using interviews over other research methodologies is the intimacy of the conversation.

Because you’re speaking with someone 1-on-1, they tend to share things they wouldn’t in a public forum (like a testimonial).

For example, when I asked the question “How would you describe your car AFTER leaving [name of biz]?” one interviewee said:

I’m not embarrassed to pick up my friends and take them somewhere. It just feels really clean and comfortable.”

This response gave us insight into what may motivate potential customers, which can be used to shape things like architecture, copy, and more.

For example, using this one insight, here are a few copy ideas we could use:

  • So fresh and clean, you’ll volunteer to drive
  • No more embarrassing stains or smells
  • A sense of pride in every ride

These 3 copy ideas could be used on a single page, sprinkled throughout the site, used as ads, in email copy, and more.

Regardless, you can see how one simple question (and one simple response) can yield plenty of usable ideas.


Now that we have some copy ideas, let’s use a conversion tactic to improve the effectiveness of the words.

In this example, I’m using urgency, which is a way to motivate a prospect to take action now (vs waiting until later or never taking action at all).

Here’s how it works in this example:

So fresh and clean, you’ll volunteer to drive

No more embarrassing stains or smells! Show off a fresh, clean, and stain-free car to family and friends with our spring cleaning special, now available through the end of March.

[[ Get 15% off through 3/31! ]]

As you can see, I’m using a specific timeframe (in this case, the month of March) to create a sense of urgency.

I’m also using relevancy to align my offer with something timely and seasonal.

I’m doing this by connecting my promotion (15% off) to a specific moment in time (March) when people are more likely to be thinking about something like spring cleaning.

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