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Analyzing The Great Adverts- How Did You Do It

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John D Johnston

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Sep 7, 2018
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Hey, guys got a question I hope can get answered.

I've been analyzing some ads on swipe.co but not quite sure if I am doing it correctly or maybe even over analyzing. I am a fan of Gene Schwartz just now. I listen to his words and read his stuff and try and take-apart his adverts.

What do I do?

Ok, I look at the number of benefits (does's as he puts it) he uses and what he repeats again (maybe in a different way). I also look at the amount of authority/trust he sprinkles in his copy to reassure the reader that this is more than worth the risk etc, the words he uses to instill fear to the reader and the number of times he adds instant gratification in the copy or wants to get the reader to imagine, use a past experience or remember seeing something in the past to agitate a problem. There are more things I look at but I could get too detailed.

If you have ever analyzed anyone's copy what do or did you look for to understand it better, this would help me and my own learning improve?

Thanks
 

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Lex DeVille

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Hey, guys got a question I hope can get answered.

I've been analyzing some ads on swipe.co but not quite sure if I am doing it correctly or maybe even over analyzing. I am a fan of Gene Schwartz just now. I listen to his words and read his stuff and try and take-apart his adverts.

What do I do?

Ok, I look at the number of benefits (does's as he puts it) he uses and what he repeats again (maybe in a different way). I also look at the amount of authority/trust he sprinkles in his copy to reassure the reader that this is more than worth the risk etc, the words he uses to instill fear to the reader and the number of times he adds instant gratification in the copy or wants to get the reader to imagine, use a past experience or remember seeing something in the past to agitate a problem. There are more things I look at but I could get too detailed.

If you have ever analyzed anyone's copy what do or did you look for to understand it better, this would help me and my own learning improve?

Thanks
Is your goal to write like Gene Schwartz or to write good copy?

All the things you mentioned looking for are tactics and techniques. But copywriting isn't cake. You don't follow a recipe, add the ingredients, bake at 350, out pops sales.

Good copy doesn't start with tactics.

It starts with understanding the reader. That's why niche bloggers crush sales copywriters every day even when they don't know jack about copy or selling.

If you want to write like Gene Schwartz, study Gene Schwartz. If you want to write copy that sells, study the market you're writing for and learn to write for them.

Then write actual copy, put it in the market and see what happens. Make adjustments based on the feedback you get from the market.
 

Lex DeVille

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To be sure we're on the same page, here's specifically what you need to know before tactics, techniques, or the structure of copy will be of any use:

- Who is your target audience?
- What problem are they having?
- What makes it a problem for them?
- How bad is the problem?
- How do they talk about it in their own words?
- How do they think about it in their mind?
- How old are they?
- What are their worldviews?
- What kind of slang does that market segment use?
- What words or phrases would they hate?
- What are their core values in life?
- Who else in their life does this problem affect?
- What are their political views?
- What are their religious views?
- Are they more emotional, analytical, or action-driven?
- Are they big picture people or detail-oriented?
- What do they do in their spare time?
- How big is their family?
- How do they like to imagine themselves?
- What do they identify with in life?
- How do they want to be seen by others?
- Who is this person?

Who is this person? Who will they become once they own your product?

Copywriting is about people.

Tactics and techniques are about copywriters selling products to their target audience, (whom they know very well) people who want to learn to write copy.
 
OP
OP
John D Johnston

John D Johnston

New Contributor
Sep 7, 2018
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Excellent response to that and thanks for being so detailed.

I wanna write good copy that sells. My niche of interest is health & wellness and I spend a lot of time to find out more about that market for example. I'm in Fb groups they open up in, read youtube comments, read websites/blogs they would use, magazines they buy etc. I have subscribed to emails, newsletters that they would receive to get a flavor of the language they see and enjoy reading just so I can try and deeper in there. The reason I started listening to Schwartz was to get some advice which is helpful but no the most productive as listening don't make bread.

So your advice would be to create a blog similar to how others are doing well and focus more on my market that any guru? and test my waters?
 

Lex DeVille

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So your advice would be to create a blog similar to how others are doing well and focus more on my market that any guru? and test my waters?
No, I didn't say that at all. I said bloggers sell better than a lot of copywriters because they understand their audience.

They literally are the audience, so anything they write for their industry comes from a place of understanding and empathy.

Don't become a blogger. Put your focus on understanding the audience as though you were them.

When you get it right you won't need copywriting tactics to sell.
 

Fotis

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I got started in Fitness and then learned copywriting (funny story, I have @Lex DeVille copywriting thread to thanks for helping me earn my first $$$ in copywriting)

If you wanna learn how to write copy that sells, you not only have to write but also have to find a way to communicate with your audience. Personally, I have an email list and email them almost daily. Even though emails aren't sales letters, I get instant feedback on what works with my audience. I have reached a point where even if I write a 2-4 pages sales letter, I will still sell thanks to the emails, the bond I have with the list and of course, offering something I know they want.

To be honest, if you don't find some eyeballs that will check your message, you will never know if your copy is good or shite. So I suggest to also focus your energy on somehow building a list or an audience. Even if you were the new Gary Bencivenga, all your copywriting skill would be useless without a way to reach your market.
 
OP
OP
John D Johnston

John D Johnston

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Sep 7, 2018
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Thanks for chipping in. I will check out Lex's stuff on here, good shout my man.
 

ChrisV

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Honestly, just rewrite great ads by hand.

Copy them word for word.

This is classic advice, why? Because it works!

When you rewrite copy it’s like studying it so deeply. When I did it i picked up on writing copy so quickly that people were like ‘holy shit dude, you’re naturally gifted’

I don’t think I am.

Rewriting copy by hand forces you to study every word and let it sink into your unconscious.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WqOwm4waL5E
 

ChrisV

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To be honest, if you don't find some eyeballs that will check your message, you will never know if your copy is good or sh*te.
Yea, but after you send it out, how do you even know if it was good? Do you have stat counters in links?
 

Lex DeVille

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Honestly, just rewrite great ads by hand.

Copy them word for word.

This is classic advice, why? Because it works!

When you rewrite copy it’s like studying it so deeply. When I did it i picked up on writing copy so quickly that people were like ‘holy sh*t dude, you’re naturally gifted’

I don’t think I am.

Rewriting copy by hand forces you to study every word and let it sink into your unconscious.
Great advice!

..if his goal were to never make a dime writing copy.

Click here for 30 pages of people who followed that advice and didn't make money copywriting.

Biggest action-fake of the forum.
 

ChrisV

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Great advice!

..if his goal were to never make a dime writing copy.

Click here for 30 pages of people who followed that advice and didn't make money copywriting.

Biggest action-fake of the forum.
Wow your reply was so edgy and cool!

Except you’re totally wrong. There are like 30 studies on this.

ScienceDaily: Better learning through handwriting

Writing by hand strengthens the learning process. When typing on a keyboard, this process may be impaired. Neurophysiologists have examined research which goes a long way in confirming the significance of these differences. When writing by hand, our brain receives feedback from our motor actions, together with the sensation of touching a pencil and paper. These kinds of feedback is significantly different from those we receive when touching and typing on a keyboard.​

Neural correlates of creative writing: an fMRI study. - PubMed - NCBI

Episodic memory retrieval, free-associative and spontaneous cognition, and semantic integration were observed in a right lateralized activation pattern in bilateral hippocampi, bilateral temporal poles (BA 38), and bilateral posterior cingulate cortex in a "creative writing" minus "copying" comparison. A correlation analysis of "creative writing" minus "copying" with the creativity index revealed activation in the left inferior frontal gyrus (BA 45) and the left temporal pole (BA 38). Thus, verbal creativity during "creative writing" is associated with verbal and semantic memory as well as semantic integration.​

And don’t take this as an invitation to an argument. I’m definitely not having a debate with people who cite threads at the fastlane forum as evidence.
 

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Lex DeVille

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Wow your reply was so edgy and cool!

Except you’re totally wrong. There are like 30 studies on this.

ScienceDaily: Better learning through handwriting

Writing by hand strengthens the learning process. When typing on a keyboard, this process may be impaired. Neurophysiologists have examined research which goes a long way in confirming the significance of these differences. When writing by hand, our brain receives feedback from our motor actions, together with the sensation of touching a pencil and paper. These kinds of feedback is significantly different from those we receive when touching and typing on a keyboard.​

Neural correlates of creative writing: an fMRI study. - PubMed - NCBI

Episodic memory retrieval, free-associative and spontaneous cognition, and semantic integration were observed in a right lateralized activation pattern in bilateral hippocampi, bilateral temporal poles (BA 38), and bilateral posterior cingulate cortex in a "creative writing" minus "copying" comparison. A correlation analysis of "creative writing" minus "copying" with the creativity index revealed activation in the left inferior frontal gyrus (BA 45) and the left temporal pole (BA 38). Thus, verbal creativity during "creative writing" is associated with verbal and semantic memory as well as semantic integration.​

And don’t take this as an invitation to an argument. I’m definitely not having a debate with people who cite threads at the fastlane forum as evidence.
Keep studying..

Meanwhile I'll be making real money in the real world with field-tested copywriting.

That's what real copywriters do.

So where in those articles (or from your personal experience) did anyone make money?

Ah, that's right..
 

ChrisV

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Keep studying..
No, I really don’t care about being a copywriter.

I honestly don’t consider it a lucrative profession.

But sales in general is extremely useful to learn for actual entrepreneurship.

Certainly not a good end goal though, in my opinion.
 

ChrisV

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So anyway OP... I’ll reiterate. Just rewrite great ads by hand.

Copy them word for word.

This is classic advice, why? Because it works.

When you rewrite copy it’s like studying it so deeply.

Rewriting copy by hand forces you to study every word and let it sink into your unconscious.
 

Fotis

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There's one reason to copy ads by hand...

...to make Gary Halbert smile in his grave

On a more serious note, I'm with Lex. Handwriting ads is overrated.

First of all, many people (me included) zombiely copy the ads. That's not how you're supposed to do it. You actually have to spend extra time, studying the ad and then copy it. I think Halbert in his initial newsletter never mentioned this detail and only corrected himself later.

Then, let's not forget that it's not the copywriting that did the job - it was an incredible offer to a receptive audience. COpywriting is like 20% of the battle.

You said it yourself @ChrisV :

"When I did it i picked up on writing copy so quickly that people were like ‘holy sh*t dude, you’re naturally gifted’"

Did people buy whatever you were selling in your writing? Halbert himself has said that whenever people said "wow, great ad!" he knew that it needed rewriting. The response he was looking for was "Holy shit, where can I buy this????"

To whoever is reading, may I suggest the Agora model? Agora is a billion dollar direct response company, that's selling information products into competitive fields like health, fat loss, finance etc.

They regularly take complete newbies and turn them into mega buck producing copywriters.

How?

It's simple. Every day they want you to

— Read and analyze a proven ad.

— Journal your thoughts and learning.

— Write one page of copy.

Simple as that. For me, handwriting is another excuse to procrastinate and not do the freaking work (write actual copy) There are much better systems for writing good copy than handwriting ads that I sincerely think people still mention it as a tribute to Halbert.

Yea, but after you send it out, how do you even know if it was good? Do you have stat counters in links?
I'm a believer in what Ben Settle says "forget open rates, ctr's, likes, comments, etc and focus on sales". I don't get sales every day (my list isn't that big) but every now and then an email will get me a lot of leads/sales and this tells me that I have somehow touched something in my list. Does this cover your question? Not sure if you were asking something else
 

ChrisV

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I'm a believer in what Ben Settle says "forget open rates, ctr's, likes, comments, etc and focus on sales". I don't get sales every day (my list isn't that big) but every now and then an email will get me a lot of leads/sales and this tells me that I have somehow touched something in my list. Does this cover your question? Not sure if you were asking something else
Yea, I agree.. sales at the end of the day are all that matter... but depending on the situation it can be harder to get immediate feedback. then clicks.

Re: copying by hand... I feel like I benefitted enormously from it.

And as I was writing I would just have all these aha moments. I would see exactly why they strung certain words together. I think part of it is that you’re intensely studying the copy, but I also think there’s something to be said about the writing of it. This is have I learned a lot of graphic design. When I saw a design I liked, I would try to copy it exactly. It showed me nuanced ways the creator had to use to do it.

But hey, to each his own.

But the ads that I studied weren’t good ones, they were ones like the Wall Street Journal ones, etc... ones that were proven to drum up sales. So yes, I agree, ‘good ads’ don’t matter so much. What matters I’d if they sell.
 

Fotis

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"Yea, I agree.. sales at the end of the day are all that matter... but depending on the situation it can be harder to get immediate feedback. then clicks."

It depends on what system you have in place. Online? Offline? Fb ads to autoresponder to webinar? Many details. Personally I keep it simple and, from what I understand, complex stuff (like funnels) come into place in the high 6, 7- figures or more.

"Re: copying by hand... I feel like I benefitted enormously from it."

If you did, great. I also benefitted from it, but it was only writing wise. It wasn't until I started creating good offers that the writing became effective. And, I can always argue, that even if I was a crappy writer, with a solid offer to the right list I would still sell enough.
 

ChrisV

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Ohhhh.. I get what you’re saying. Yea, that type of stuff only helps with the writing aspect lol.

Although it may help in helping you intuitively identifying good offers from bad. Possibly. Who knows.
 
OP
OP
John D Johnston

John D Johnston

New Contributor
Sep 7, 2018
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To whoever is reading, may I suggest the Agora model? Agora is a billion dollar direct response company, that's selling information products into competitive fields like health, fat loss, finance etc.
Thanks for carying this thread guys. I subscribe to most of those to check out there sales pages but not studied yet. Think I will pay more attention than the "older ads" as what's working today probably better than yesteryear?

I'm a believer in what Ben Settle says "forget open rates, ctr's, likes, comments, etc and focus on sales".
I love ben...he is only guy that i read probably 85% of emails, the other just escape me because he is so relentless in his email tactics and cant keep up. I've thought about joining his email players list" but I've no list's so...

It depends on what system you have in place. Online? Offline? Fb ads to autoresponder to webinar? Many details. Personally I keep it simple
How simple do you keep it?

I would just have all these aha moments. I would see exactly why they strung certain words together. I think part of it is that you’re intensely studying the copy,
I have done this probably 2 or 3 times and i totally get the thinking behind it. It's something i think i can benefit from but like fotis says actually studying adverts and jotting down thoughts and doing my own could be more productive.
 

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