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The copy for Tansy's site
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paolo



Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Posts: 3931
Location: Provence, France

PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 1:33 pm    Post subject: The copy for Tansy's site Reply with quote

I have finally found time to write some copy for Tansy's site. I'll post what I have done as a first draft for comment and review.

Tansy can now add essential information I have left out for each house.

I've separated out the information on the local area for each house, because there would be too much information on a page if this followed on from the house description. Tansy is working on this area info.

On the homepage I have optimised for the phrases 'normandy beach rentals' and 'Normandy rentals' as the keyword research suggests these are popularly used phrases on search engines.

The idea on the homepage is that there is a heading, then two short bits of text describing each home, to run alongside pics of each, and a link to the more detailed page on each home.

In red are the phrases I have optimised for. Note that a search engine spider doesn't recognise punctuation marks or even paragraph breaks, so a phrase can span across them. This is a useful trick to break up the repetitiveness of a phrase.

Quote:
Homepage copy:

Two Normandy beach rentals with panoramic sea views

Both beach houses sleep 10/11, one is on the west coast, the other on the east coast of Normandy - both rental homes are right on the beach.

The Observer newspaper calls this house at St Germain sur Ay one of the world’s top 15 beach rentals.

Normandy
is famed for its broad beaches and at the bottom of the garden is a sensational white sand beach (one of the most beautiful in France, according to the Sunday Telegraph). The beach stretches as far as the eye can see, and there are views across the water to the island of Jersey.

5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, can sleep 11. Click here for more on this beach rental.


Normandy's
Utah Beach - our converted fisherman’s house in the dunes of this historic beach is in the middle of a natural park and next to a bird sanctuary, so the setting is totally unspoilt, and on a golden stretch of sand that is never crowded.

There are 5 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms, sleeping 10 in great comfort. Click here for more on this outstanding Normandy rental home.

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paolo



Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Posts: 3931
Location: Provence, France

PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 1:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

On the pages for each house, I have not yet optimised for particular phrases. Largely this is because I have not come up with a way of doing it without making the text uncomfortably clunking to read. Any ideas?

Copy for Tansy's St Germain house:

Quote:
Normandy Beach Rental House
- rated one of the world’s best

Selected by the UK’s The Observer as one of the top 15 beach rentals in the world, this Normandy rental house has sensational, uninterrupted sea views.

And the beach at the bottom of the garden was nominated by The Sunday Telegraph as one of the most beautiful in all of France.

Here at St Germain Sur Ay, the white sand stretches as far as the eye can see, with views across to the island of Jersey and the legendary Isles of Ecrehou from the panoramic windows.

We have maximised the stunning views over 3 floors with a raised elevation overlooking the sea. The feature that really strikes you when you stay here is the incredible clarity of the light – it must be something to do with all that sea and clean air.

The sunny living/dining room is perfect for relaxation, or contemplating the glorious sunsets over the sea, or enjoying the log fire in the winter.

From the dining table, everyone can enjoy the sea view, even when you have your back to it!

The kitchen is modern and very well equipped with eye-level oven, huge fridge-freezer, and everything from dishwasher to olive oil.

Bedrooms……….[no info]?

All the linen is supplied and the beds made up for your arrival. Furniture, bedding, towels, beach towels, etc. are all of good quality with a nautical theme throughout.

In the garden there are sun loungers, deck chairs and a huge Portuguese BBQ, plus a patio area with table and chairs for 10,

For children we have 2 cots, 2 highchairs, toilet trainers, baby baths, bottle sterilizers, changing mats, bucket and spade - just ask!

Entertainment: TV has BBC and ITV, there is a video player and video library, DVD player, and a CD player/radio.

Dogs are positively welcomed. The garden is child- and dog-friendly.

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paolo



Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Posts: 3931
Location: Provence, France

PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 1:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Copy for Tansy's Utah Beach home:

Quote:
Utah Beach Rental Home

This newly renovated, former fisherman’s house is tucked up in the dunes of Utah Beach and has spectacular views over the sea to Grand Camp Maisy, Point du Hoc and the Isles of Marcouf.

A path leads from the back gate onto the wide expanses of Utah Beach.

This stretch of coastline gives you the best of Normandy’s natural beauty. The house is in the Cotentin and Bessin Marshlands Natural Park, while the Beauguillot Nature Reserve/Bird Sanctuary of 1,200 acres is just 500 metres from your doorstep.

There is something for everyone here - bird watchers, beach lovers, gourmets, wine lovers, walkers, bike riders, horse riders, wind surfers, sand yachters, sailors, divers, WW2 buffs, or just general explorers…the problem here is that there is too much to do!

About the house

Newly renovated to sleep 10 in 5 bedrooms, this is a perfect holiday home for either 2 families sharing or 1 big family, including grandparents, the family dog and loads of kids.

The house is designed to maximize the panoramic sea views from the living space on the 1st floor. Up here there is a large open-plan living room, kitchen and dining area, leading onto a glass veranda. Here there is a large dining table for 10, plus another seating area leading out to the huge sun terrace with a patio table for 10, a Portuguese BBQ and sun beds.

In the living room is a TV (satellite Freeview programmes include BBC, ITV, Sky News, etc.), DVD player , CD player, big wood burner for the winter (logs included), a well-stocked book case, even jigsaws in case of emergency!

Bedrooms: on the first floor there are 2 bedrooms, (1 double & 1 twin) and a bathroom.

On the lower floor are 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and the laundry room. There is a large double with an en suite shower room, and 2 twin rooms with a 'Jack & Jill' shower room. Both bedrooms at the front of the house have French windows opening out into the garden.

We have tried to create a very comfortable home-from-home property with all the linen, bedding and decorations reflecting a nautical theme.

All the beds are made up for your arrival, with towels in the bathrooms. Beach towels, sun bed covers and even a bucket and spade for the kids are provided.

The garden is walled in so its completely secure for children and dogs. There is ample parking for up to 6 cars plus a large garage.

The kitchen is well equipped with dishwasher, microwave, gas hob & oven, kettle, toaster, coffee maker and a large family-sized fridge/freezer. A well-stocked larder awaits you with tea, coffee, sugar, condiments, herbs, spices, pasta, stock cubes, vinegars, oils, even tinned goods - all we ask if that if you use anything please replace for the next folk.

In the laundry room there is a washing machine, tumble drier, iron and ironing board.

We positively welcome dogs – Utah Beach is doggie paradise – the only worry a dog owner may have is that the dog will sulk when it is time to go home! Our vet speaks excellent English and is very up to speed with the ‘passport for pets’ scheme, which seems to change quite often paperwork-wise!

From the 1st July the boulangerie in Ste Marie du Mont has a mobile shop - the van stops outside, and toots it's horn for you to pop out to buy your bread in the mornings.

The nearest town is Ste Mere Eglise, about 8 miles away. This is where the 101st Airborne parachuted in on 6th June 1944. Today it has all the shops, cafes and restaurants you could wish for.

The house is in the heart of a significant conservation area so it is an amazingly peaceful and unspoilt setting.

Find out more about the local area, and things to see and do, by clicking here.

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Last edited by paolo on Thu Mar 31, 2005 5:35 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Alan Knighting



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 4170
Location: Monflanquin, Lot-et-Garonne, France

PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 4:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paolo,

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Not true if all words were like that. I would fancy it with no pictures at all. Are you a wordsmith or what?

Alan
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vrooje



Joined: 09 Dec 2004
Posts: 3263
Location: Burgundy, France

PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 6:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, I completely agree with Alan, and I feel like such a nitpicker, but oh well, here we go...

For the St. Germain House text:
    There are two phrases which struck me as a bit odd: "everything from dishwasher to olive oil" and "all the linen is supplied and the beds made up for your arrival."

    I feel like it ought to be "everything from a dishwasher to ..." or perhaps "everything from a dishwasher to a bottle of olive oil" or even perhaps a phrase switching the dishwasher and olive oil.

    To me that's really about whether you want to leave the potential client with the impression that "naturally they have the big items, but they've taken care of the little details," or of "naturally they have little things taken care of, but they also have modern amenities." Both have their advantages. (And yes, I really do overanalyze things this way.)

    You might be able to work in a keyword or two discussing whether dogs are welcomed on the beaches of Normandy.



For the Utah Beach Home:
    Is it "wide expanses of Utah Beach" or "wide expanse of Utah Beach"? I honestly don't think I've ever used the plural form of expanse, but that doesn't mean it isn't valid, of course!

    The "there is something for everyone here" list provides a nice place to optimize for a very specific set of google searches -- and in that sense is it better to use the phrase "bird watchers" or "bird watching"? What you've chosen does, I think, do a better job of placing the reader at the scene, though, so it might not be worth it to think of changing it. Either way, it might be a good place to throw in a location keyword, in case someone ever types in "utah beach horse riding" or even "france horse riding" or something.

    Oh, a very small thing, but I would expand WW2 -- though you were probably planning to do that anyway.

    Describing the living space on the first floor, you use "up here" and then "here" -- I think the second "here" could be omitted without losing fluidity.

    Mrs. Nitpick here also noticed the space between "DVD player" and the comma right after it.

    "The garden is walled in so its completely secure" -- the "its" should be "it's".

    I think the whole list of kitchen amenities would read better if it started with "The kitchen is well equipped with a dishwasher" rather than that phrase without the "a" before dishwasher.

    The phrase "all we ask if that if you" should be "all we ask is that if you" and should perhaps be preceded by two hyphens to make a full dash, though I'm not sure if that's just an American punctuation rule.

    Is it really called a "tumble drier"? Americans would spell that "dryer" instead, so I'm just pointing it out in case. Smile

    In the paragraph about the mobile boulangerie, the phrase "and toots it's horn" should be "and toots its horn".


The main page copy is great, I think. I didn't know that you could break up key phrases with paragraphs! That's a fantastic bit of information, that is.

All in all, I feel funny pointing out all these minute details when I think the copy is wonderful! Nice job, copy master! Smile

Cheers!
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paolo



Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Posts: 3931
Location: Provence, France

PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Brooke,

You are right in all you say - this was a rush job and is full of small errors.

I have found it unexpectedly hard to write this copy because of the time involved. As there are two similar houses I had to upload into my brain all the information for both houses, and separate them out. I never found time to do this, and produce some copy, before now.

Thanks for your feedback, I'll amend the copy accordingly and repost.
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paolo



Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Posts: 3931
Location: Provence, France

PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 7:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Brooke,

On a couple of points you made:

- That's a very good point on the way the activities are spelled out - bird watchers vs. birdwatching, etc.

- I actually spelled WW2 as I supposed most people would type it into a search engine. Don't you think that would be more common than "world war 2"?

- "You might be able to work in a keyword or two discussing whether dogs are welcomed on the beaches of Normandy." How would you do that?
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vrooje



Joined: 09 Dec 2004
Posts: 3263
Location: Burgundy, France

PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 9:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah, good point on the WW2 idea... but in that case would it be WWII? That's the way we're taught it in US schools, but who knows? I do think you're right, though, most people will try the acronym first.

What about a phrase like, "And of course, dogs are welcome to play on the sand outside our beach rental! Normandy beaches in general are very dog-friendly." ...of course that's just off the top of my head, but I'm sure you could fit it in somehow.

Cheers!
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paolo



Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Posts: 3931
Location: Provence, France

PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 10:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
What about a phrase like, "And of course, dogs are welcome to play on the sand outside our beach rental! Normandy beaches in general are very dog-friendly."

Duh, I get it...I thought you meant optimise for a phrase aimed at dog-owners![/quote]
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paolo



Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Posts: 3931
Location: Provence, France

PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2005 11:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

St Germain rewrite:

Quote:
Normandy Beach Rental House
- rated one of the world’s best

Selected by the UK’s The Observer as one of the top 15 beach rentals in the world, this Normandy rental house has sensational, uninterrupted sea views.

And the beach at the bottom of the garden was nominated by The Sunday Telegraph as one of the most beautiful in all of France.

Here at St Germain Sur Ay, the white sand stretches as far as the eye can see, with views across to the island of Jersey and the legendary Isles of Ecrehou from the panoramic windows.

We have maximised the stunning views over 3 floors with a raised elevation overlooking the sea. The feature that really strikes you when you stay here is the incredible clarity of the light – it must be something to do with all that sea and clean air.

The sunny living/dining room is perfect for relaxation, or contemplating the glorious sunsets over the sea, or enjoying the log fire in the winter.

From the dining table, everyone can enjoy the sea view, even when you have your back to it!

The kitchen is modern and very well equipped with eye-level oven, huge fridge-freezer, and everything from dishwasher to olive oil.

Bedrooms……….[no info]?

All the linen is supplied and the beds made up for your arrival. Furniture, bedding, towels, beach towels, etc. are all of good quality with a nautical theme throughout.

In the garden there are sun loungers, deck chairs and a huge Portuguese BBQ, plus a patio area with table and chairs for 10,

For children we have 2 cots, 2 highchairs, toilet trainers, baby baths, bottle sterilizers, changing mats, bucket and spade - just ask!

Entertainment: TV has BBC and ITV, there is a video player and video library, DVD player, and a CD player/radio.

Dogs are positively welcomed. The garden is child- and dog-friendly, and of course, dogs are welcome to play on the sand outside our beach rental. Normandy beaches are wonderful places to walk a dog.

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paolo



Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Posts: 3931
Location: Provence, France

PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2005 12:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rewrite for the Utah Beach home:

Quote:
Utah Beach Rental Home

This newly renovated, former fisherman’s house is tucked up in the dunes of Utah Beach and has spectacular views over the sea to Grand Camp Maisy, Point du Hoc and the Isles of Marcouf.

A path leads from the back gate onto the wide expanse of Utah Beach.

This stretch of coastline gives you the best of Normandy’s natural beauty. The house is in the Cotentin and Bessin Marshlands Natural Park, while the Beauguillot Nature Reserve/Bird Sanctuary of 1,200 acres is just 500 metres from your doorstep.

There is something for everyone in this very special corner of Normandy: birdwatching, walking, some of the best food in France, horse riding, bike riding, wind surfing, sand yachting, sailing, diving, the beaches (not just Utah Beach), D-Day and WW2 interest…the problem here is that there is too much to do!

About the house

Newly renovated to sleep 10 in 5 bedrooms, this is a perfect holiday home for either 2 families sharing or 1 big family, including grandparents, the family dog and loads of kids.

The house is designed to maximize the panoramic sea views from the living space on the 1st floor. Up here there is a large open-plan living room, kitchen and dining area, leading onto a glass veranda. There is a large dining table for 10, plus another seating area leading out to the huge sun terrace with a patio table for 10, a Portuguese BBQ and sun beds.

In the living room is a TV (satellite Freeview programmes include BBC, ITV, Sky News, etc.), DVD player, CD player, big wood burner for the winter (logs included), a well-stocked book case, even jigsaws in case of emergency!

Bedrooms: on the first floor there are 2 bedrooms, (1 double & 1 twin) and a bathroom.

On the lower floor are 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and the laundry room. There is a large double with an en suite shower room, and 2 twin rooms with a 'Jack & Jill' shower room. Both bedrooms at the front of the house have French windows opening out into the garden.

We have tried to create a very comfortable home-from-home property with all the linen, bedding and decorations reflecting a nautical theme.

All the beds are made up for your arrival, with towels in the bathrooms. Beach towels, sun bed covers and even a bucket and spade for the kids are provided.

The garden is walled in so it’s completely secure for children and dogs. There is ample parking for up to 6 cars plus a large garage.

The kitchen is well equipped with a dishwasher, microwave, gas hob & oven, kettle, toaster, coffee maker and a large family-sized fridge/freezer. A well-stocked larder awaits you with tea, coffee, sugar, condiments, herbs, spices, pasta, stock cubes, vinegars, oils, even tinned goods - all we ask is that if you use anything please replace for the next folk.

In the laundry room there is a washing machine, tumble-drier, iron and ironing board.

We positively welcome dogs – Utah Beach is doggie paradise – the only worry a dog owner may have is that the dog will sulk when it is time to go home! Our vet speaks excellent English and is very up to speed with the ‘passport for pets’ scheme, which seems to change quite often paperwork-wise!

From the 1st July the boulangerie in Ste Marie du Mont has a mobile shop - the van stops outside, and toots its horn for you to pop out to buy your bread in the mornings.

The nearest town is Ste Mere Eglise, about 8 miles away. This is where the 101st Airborne parachuted in on 6th June 1944. Today it has all the shops, cafes and restaurants you could wish for.

The house is in the heart of a significant conservation area so it is an amazingly peaceful and unspoilt setting.

Find out more about the local area, and things to see and do, by clicking here.

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tansy



Joined: 20 Sep 2004
Posts: 2106
Location: La Manche, Normandy, France

PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2005 7:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paolo

The rewrite for Utah is superb...thank you, it's friendly, inviting and to the point.

Only thing I would ask is that this is somehow added

Our beach fronted houses are both set in Cotentin and Bessin Marshlands Regional Natural Park which covers 145,000 hectares with Utah Beach being 500 yards from a 12,000 acre bird sanctuary.

I can see what you are saying with the 2 houses - it could start to become repetitive. I will do my upmost to carry on working on the local links & places on interest today....I'm running behind with the laundry with all the rain - changeover tomorrow!

St Germain has a ground floor twin bedroom with a bathroom next door to it along with a seperate loo (with the lid down! Wink ) This room especially suits Granny and Granddad or someone with restricted movement.

Upstairs at the front of the house we have a double room plus a twin, these 2 rooms have the best bedroom views available anywhere! a 3rd twin room and a family bathroom, also on this floor at the rear of the property over looking the garden is a 2nd very large double room with ensuite shower room.

I've re written this description so many times now!! What I'm trying to say is that we have a huge double room at the rear of the property with an ensuite - so there is a choice - sea view and share the family bathroom - or ensuite and look at the garden!
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A-two



Joined: 25 Oct 2004
Posts: 2110
Location: USA

PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2005 3:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

paolo wrote:
Rewrite for the Utah Beach home:

In the laundry room there is a washing machine, tumble-drier, iron and ironing board.


Stunning piece of copy here Paolo, which I'll be studying in great depth. On the American v. English question, I'm dancing around it constantly and generally add both words side by side if it doesn't trip up the sentence. Otherwise, I might use a "/" between the two words to keep the sense. For example:-

"Local calls are free, but for long distance/toll calls, we can provide a mobile cellphone with pre-paid phone card."

In the above laundry example, it's even trickier, because in the USA, they might say washer dryer with no comma in between and still assume two separate machines, albeit stacked on top of each other. In Europe one thinks of a washer drier as one small front loading machine that runs both functions. I'm not sure if those are available in the US, certainly not without a special order.

So in this case, I would be inclined to say:-

"In the laundry room there are separate washing and drying machines, iron and ironing board. [/quote]

This is minor issue compared to the pitfall of a First Floor, which in the USA is the Ground Floor, and in the UK is the floor above ground level, i.e. a Second Floor......just something to be aware of, if you are speaking to both sides of the pond.....Smile

Regards,

Joanna

(ex-pat Brit living in America)
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paolo



Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Posts: 3931
Location: Provence, France

PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2005 11:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good points Joanna, and I will make changes accordingly.

Thanks for the feedback. Very Happy
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vrooje



Joined: 09 Dec 2004
Posts: 3263
Location: Burgundy, France

PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2005 4:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I get around the first floor/second floor issue by calling it the main level and upper level of the house... but I don't know if that would work in all situations.

Joanna's quite right about the laundry -- Combo washer-dryer units (i.e., one machine that does both) are sold in the US, but they're not really advertised and most people don't know they even exist! Likewise with the idea of a condenser dryer. Most Americans just don't know what that is.

I think that being from the UK but living in the US qualifies Joanna as an expert in cross-continental language differences! Smile
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