Sean Vosler
5 min readFeb 14, 2023

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Ah, copywriting: an art that calls to all the dreamy, wild-eyed idealists who, at their inner core, want only one thing: to capture imaginations and persuade souls. To those deep sons of bitches, there is no greater tool than the power of narrative: a combination of bone-deep understanding of grammar, structure, and punctuation, combined with the soul-numbing discomfort of high-level conflict. For without conflict, there can be no story; and without story, there can be no compelling copywriting.

What Conflict Can Do for Your Copy

Copywriting is perhaps the dearest closest cousin of narrative story-telling, and just as the great authors of literature use conflict to elevate the drama of their stories, so must the copywriter do the same. Conflict comes in many shapes and sizes, each of which can be adapted to fit into a copywriting strategy.

At its most essential, conflict is comprised of three parts: goal, motivation, and conflict itself. Any problem in life can be seen as a conflict, such as someone wanting something they can’t get, or two people wanting something only one can get. It’s this tension and drama that the savvy copywriter will use to give their work the extra edge of resonance and persuasiveness.

Types of Conflict

Let’s take a look at some of the more successful forms of conflict that can be applied to copywriting.

Problem-Solution Conflict

This type of conflict is all about taking advantage of the moment. It offers an audience an immediate solution to a problem that is relevant to them, creating an aura of urgency. In problem-solution conflict, the copywriter is telling a story of resolution, with the added bonus of a product or service as a part of that storyline.

Before-After Conflict

Here, the copywriter will create a vivid image of the before and after states that the product or service provides. This type of conflict hammers home the transformation message by helping the audience to visualize and imagine the difference that the product or service can make in their life.

Protagonist-Antagonist Conflict

Protagonist-Antagonist conflict gives the audience a goal to root for. This type of conflict pits the protagonist or audience against an antagonist, such as a problem, competitor, or obstacle. It encourages the audience to take up arms against adversity, relying on the product or service as a ‘savior’ to their problems.

Self-Internal Conflict

An often-overlooked branch of conflict is self-internal. This type of conflict focuses on the protagonist’s inner battle, usually some mixture of doubt, fear, and lack of self-confidence. A self-internal conflict story creates an emotional connection between the protagonist and the audience by showcasing the emotional journey of the protagonist.

Using conflict to enhance your copywriting is a step-by-step process. First, identify the conflict and tailor your story to match. Should the conflict be used to create a sense of urgency, challenge, or emotional connection? Then, use the conflict to drive your customer’s story forward.

AI tools like Jasper.ai can assist you in generating conflict-based narratives for your copy. when it comes to creating narratives featuring conflict.

Crafting Powerful Messages

At the end of the day, it’s all about crafting powerful messages that will compel your audience to take action. Conflict is a powerful tool that can help you do just that. By understanding the various types of conflicts available, tailoring your story to match, and leveraging the interpretive power of narrative with Jasper.ai, you can create persuasive copy that engages and enthralls your audience.

What better way to put copywriting to the ultimate test than embracing a narrative dripping with the intention of conflict? With conflict, you can create an emotionally resonant, emotionally powerful message that will convince, captivate, and persuade your audience.

Conflict in Your Copy Step by Step

Step 1: Identify Your Conflict

Start by deciding which type of conflict best suits your copywriting goals and objectives. Identify the goal and motivation for your protagonist, as well as their antagonist. Ask yourself, is the protagonist striving to gain something they don’t have yet? Is there a person, obstacle or problem standing in the way of the protagonist achieving their goal?

Step 2: Tailor Your Story

Once the conflict is identified, the next step is to tailor your story to fit that narrative. Think about how your protagonist (your customer) interacts with the problem your product or service solves, what challenges they face, and how they overcome them in the end (with your solution).

Step 3: Leverage the Narrative

Now that you have a clear understanding of the conflict, it’s time to use that narrative to craft your copy. Utilize language, imagery, and emotional elements to make your story emotionally resonant. This can be in the form of an email that empathetically shares your understanding of where they are in their journey, and how you can help them overcome current and future challenges.

Step 4: Make It Speakable

Remember, a good story is “told” not “read”. Use language, tone, and style to take stories in your copy to the next level. Consider what emotions you want to evoke and how you want the audience to react to your copy.

Step 5: Utilize Tools to Help You Craft Your Message

Jasper.ai offers an intuitive AI-driven generator for creating compelling, high-quality narratives for your copy. Leverage the GPT-based engine to quickly build powerful narratives featuring your chosen conflict.

Step 6: Be Seamless

Before sending your copy off, make sure it fits seamlessly into the rest of your message. Your copy needs to portray a unified vision that works with existing ads, website copy, and other content efforts as part of your marketing campaign.

Step 7: Don’t Forget to Test and Measure

Finally, test and measure your message in order to gauge impact and response. You can do this by tracking website conversions, click-through rates, and other performance indicators. Consider split testing different types of conflicts or different points of view styles. The goal is to find what best connects with your target audience. This will help you to refine your conflict-driven copywriting strategies going forward.

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