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Copywriting is trending right NOW ... Here's my playbook

bon vivant

Contributor
Aug 31, 2018
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Basically, I subscribe to the belief that if you want to be a successful entrepreneur you've got to learn how to sell. So that's what I did (and continue to study).

tl:dr: I've spent the last year and a bit learning copywriting. And, I've written a special report that more or less gives away my playbook. You guys can have it free... hopefully it will save you some time.

Why now? Because copywriting is on an upward trend - you're about to see a bunch of copywriting courses flood the market (You saw it here first). Hopefully, this will stop some of you buying a bunch of crap.

My best tip with copy?

Remember this: copywriting is just salesmanship in-print. A well-principled Sales piece will nearly always beat a bit of clever wordplay.

Okay, Here's my back-story

How I discovered copywriting...

I found copywriting in a charity shop (thrift store).

At the time, I'd just dropped out of College and I was struggling to get a job - I literally got rejected from my local supermarket.

I was a fresh-faced dropout with no relevant experience.

As you can imagine, HR LOVED throwing my CV's in the bin. No phone calls, No Interviews, NADA.

So naturally, I set out for some solutions and I found one in the form of copywriting.

Now, I didn't initially realise what I'd discovered....

I was just focused on getting a job (yeah, wasn't very entrepreneurial back then).

Anyway, I got to work writing "sales letters" in the form of CV's. I literally wrote dozens of them...

After all, a CV is only an advertisement for yourself and I reckoned practising the art of ad writing would help.

It did.

Suddenly the phone started ringing and I was getting interviews. And I unfortunately got a job. But here's the thing...

I knew I was onto something...

I was the same guy, I had same experience and NOTHING else had changed. Except copywriting.

Now, I'd dropped out a science degree but it doesn't take a genius to work out that if all other variables stay the same and one thing changes- its that thing that cause the change.

Needless to say, I was hooked and I've been studying copywriting (and sales) since.

Now, it's worth noting that I'm NOT the best copywriter that ever lived. Truth is, I've got no idea how I stack compared to the big guys because I don't do freelance and I don't write for others.

But,

I know I'm good enough to get sales.

So, I'd like to pass on that knowledge to you.

What you now have in your hands is my playbook - hopefully you'll find some use in it.

If you've got any questions about copywriting then I'll do my best to answer them.

Btw, I don't go on here much cause I find it sucks my time. Therefore, I make no guarantees about a speedy response.

That's all folks.
 

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bon vivant

Contributor
Aug 31, 2018
6
20
13
Hope you are not a bro marketer trying to build his list.
I see your point...

And yeah, I have to admit I do sound like one (Where do you think I've been studying this stuff?) but alas I'm not.

I don't have a list and I don't have any plans to build one anytime soon.

Frankly, I'm not interested in joining that online offer treadmill. My goals are bigger than making 2 million a year selling online courses in the "get rich quick" niche.

Personally, I'm aiming to build a much bigger company and the last thing I want is to be THAT online marketing guy.

Hopefully, that helps. Either way I don't care.

Yous see, I've had some value from this site so I thought I'd give back. That's all.
 

Icecreamchild

Contributor
Nov 13, 2019
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I see your point...

And yeah, I have to admit I do sound like one (Where do you think I've been studying this stuff?) but alas I'm not.

I don't have a list and I don't have any plans to build one anytime soon.

Frankly, I'm not interested in joining that online offer treadmill. My goals are bigger than making 2 million a year selling online courses in the "get rich quick" niche.

Personally, I'm aiming to build a much bigger company and the last thing I want is to be THAT online marketing guy.

Hopefully, that helps. Either way I don't care.

Yous see, I've had some value from this site so I thought I'd give back. That's all.
Sorry if I offended you.
 

Defection

Contributor
Oct 29, 2019
19
41
17
I have a genuine question to ask about copywriting, as I'm not entirely sure whether I'm the only one that feels this way.

With being interested in Entrepreneurship, I find myself being fed a LOT of copywriting these days, and I can spot what is going on the second I see it. It very much gives me an instant negative viewpoint on what I'm reading. As soon as I see sentence after sentence on separate lines, I feel like my mind goes into 'potential bullsh*t' mode.

I noticed particularly the extent with this recently when I saw some copywriting in an otherwise friendly help group, but at the end of it there wasn't an attempted sale and it left me confused. I ended up genuinely asking the guy why I felt like he was trying to sell me something, yet he didn't.

It turned out he's a copywriter by trade and finds it extremely challenging to not write in a salesman-style these days. He was genuinely trying to provide help to others, but it didn't look that way!

This is not a dig at you by any means OP, I've already seen your post regarding your good intentions. I am just genuinely interested as to how many people feel the same way as I do, and whether people will begin to become more immune to copywriting as it becomes increasingly common in the 'real world'.

If this is not relevant, please feel free to delete, as I don't have any negative intentions whatsoever. :praise:
 

S.Y.

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I have a genuine question to ask about copywriting, as I'm not entirely sure whether I'm the only one that feels this way.

With being interested in Entrepreneurship, I find myself being fed a LOT of copywriting these days, and I can spot what is going on the second I see it. It very much gives me an instant negative viewpoint on what I'm reading. As soon as I see sentence after sentence on separate lines, I feel like my mind goes into 'potential bullsh*t' mode.

I noticed particularly the extent with this recently when I saw some copywriting in an otherwise friendly help group, but at the end of it there wasn't an attempted sale and it left me confused. I ended up genuinely asking the guy why I felt like he was trying to sell me something, yet he didn't.

It turned out he's a copywriter by trade and finds it extremely challenging to not write in a salesman-style these days. He was genuinely trying to provide help to others, but it didn't look that way!

This is not a dig at you by any means OP, I've already seen your post regarding your good intentions. I am just genuinely interested as to how many people feel the same way as I do, and whether people will begin to become more immune to copywriting as it becomes increasingly common in the 'real world'.

If this is not relevant, please feel free to delete, as I don't have any negative intentions whatsoever. :praise:
Wonder what is @Lex DeVille answer to this.
 
OP
OP
B

bon vivant

Contributor
Aug 31, 2018
6
20
13
I have a genuine question to ask about copywriting, as I'm not entirely sure whether I'm the only one that feels this way.

With being interested in Entrepreneurship, I find myself being fed a LOT of copywriting these days, and I can spot what is going on the second I see it. It very much gives me an instant negative viewpoint on what I'm reading. As soon as I see sentence after sentence on separate lines, I feel like my mind goes into 'potential bullsh*t' mode.

I noticed particularly the extent with this recently when I saw some copywriting in an otherwise friendly help group, but at the end of it there wasn't an attempted sale and it left me confused. I ended up genuinely asking the guy why I felt like he was trying to sell me something, yet he didn't.

It turned out he's a copywriter by trade and finds it extremely challenging to not write in a salesman-style these days. He was genuinely trying to provide help to others, but it didn't look that way!

This is not a dig at you by any means OP, I've already seen your post regarding your good intentions. I am just genuinely interested as to how many people feel the same way as I do, and whether people will begin to become more immune to copywriting as it becomes increasingly common in the 'real world'.

If this is not relevant, please feel free to delete, as I don't have any negative intentions whatsoever. :praise:
Good point... I'll give you the answer I read in Clyde Bedell's book how to write advertisements that sell.

In it, he talks about how the market is always on the move. What works now, when tried a couple of years later might flop.

So, as you've pointed out people are beginning to wake up to blatant sales pitches. That doesn't mean selling is going to STOP working. It just means the style will change.

So, the sales principles won't change necessarily it's just clever marketers are going to have to come up with new ways of expressing them.

So take urgency for instance - Instead of saying "HURRY!! We've only got 3 left" (which is often rubbish and off putting to people who are now spotting it).

You might instead say "I'm keeping this discount available until the 1st or until we've sold out"

They both use the PRINCIPLE of urgency which has been used in sales for long time - it's just a different way of expressing it.

My general rule of thumb is honesty.
Have real deadlines and real sales that end on the dates you set.

People may not initially believe them but when they come back and see you were telling the truth it builds trust. And, they'll believe you next time. You might lose out on a quick sale but long-term that's how I play the game.

My advice: Get creative in how you can honestly use sales principles.

Hopefully that helps.

Summary: yes, people are waking up and that just means the style of persuasion will change.
Personally, I believe honesty never goes out of fashion.
 

Greg R

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From a business owner's perspective, copywriting is either a skill to learn or something you can pay a freelancer *very cheaply* to do.

I don't want people reading this to think copywriting = sales. Copywriting is not sales, it is copywriting.

Sales = sales. And sometimes sales does not even equals sales when a customer does not pay you. So dollars in the bank is the only thing that really equals sales.

There are tons or resources out there, so why recreate the wheel? Can you please provide real data on how your copy has had a significant impact on you or your client's business?
 

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palneoon

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I have a genuine question to ask about copywriting, as I'm not entirely sure whether I'm the only one that feels this way.
I am a pro copywriter. I'm going to answer your question since it's about one of my pet peeves.

And it's instructive for budding persuaders out there.

Let me go in order here, because there is a lot to unpack.

With being interested in Entrepreneurship, I find myself being fed a LOT of copywriting these days,
The assumption being that entrepreneurship circles are "full of copywriting".

[Now, as an aside, "copywriting" used that way doesn't make any sense.
What you mean is "sales messages". Stuff trying to sell you something.]

But they aren't.

Full of copywriters, maybe, who write "on separate lines" (that is, write clearly).

The consumer world is choke-full of sales messages, much more than business circles.

and I can spot what is going on the second I see it. It very much gives me an instant negative viewpoint on what I'm reading. As soon as I see sentence after sentence on separate lines, I feel like my mind goes into 'potential bullsh*t' mode.
Your mind should always be on potential bullshit mode.

So let's call that progress.

But here's the thing. What you're feeling is real.

Your interpretation isn't.

Answer me this:

Do you feel the same reaction when you see a tv commercial?

Do you feel the same reaction when you see the label of your favorite beer?

Those are sales messages too, and you are aware of it.

You buy things all the time, right?

You decided to sign up for this forum, right? Maybe based on the pitch in the book?

So what is going on?

I noticed particularly the extent with this recently when I saw some copywriting in an otherwise friendly help group, but at the end of it there wasn't an attempted sale and it left me confused. I ended up genuinely asking the guy why I felt like he was trying to sell me something, yet he didn't.

It turned out he's a copywriter by trade and finds it extremely challenging to not write in a salesman-style these days. He was genuinely trying to provide help to others, but it didn't look that way!
You are experiencing cognitive dissonance.

It's pretty typical. You got interested in this wonderful world of business.

You became aware of direct response copywriting.
So your frame of reference in regards to what you see written on the internet has changed.

Now, every time you see something that looks like that...

The "being sold = bad" program in your mind that makes you react negatively to it, even when it's not selling anything.

And you realize its weird, at some level.
That's why you are asking in the first place. You pre-judged someone's post because of line breaks.

This will resolve itself in a while as your mind resolves the conundrum.

You'll become used to it, and stop having the same reaction.
You are already creating a new frame of reference ("some people just write like that").

Now, to tackle your question.

This is not a dig at you by any means OP, I've already seen your post regarding your good intentions. I am just genuinely interested as to how many people feel the same way as I do, and whether people will begin to become more immune to copywriting as it becomes increasingly common in the 'real world'.
A marketing message needs to be tailored to the market's psychology.

Read that line again.

A marketing message needs to be tailored to the market's psychology.

That's literally the copywriter's job.

So if the psychology changes, the marketing changes.

That is to answer your general question.

(By the way, the people who think they're "immune" to marketing... are the easiest to sell to. Because once they reach the hook point, they have very little friction as they think they are soo smart. In other words, once they bite, they aren't scared.)

But specifically, nothing is becoming "increasingly common" in "the real world".
If anything, direct-response style is becoming increasingly rare.

You just started being aware of it now. What you're experiencing is a state of mind in regard to a specific pattern your mind has just become aware of.
The rest of the world is not going through the same.

Incidentally, this is why someone's opinion on some copy means nothing unless they are part of the target market.

I see it this kind of skepticism all the time on this forum.
"I wouldn't believe a word of that".
So what? You are not the target market.

I don't believe one word of Tai Lopez's bullshit.
He still pulls in nine figures a year in sales.

EDIT: Refined some point for clarity.
 
Last edited:
OP
OP
B

bon vivant

Contributor
Aug 31, 2018
6
20
13
From a business owner's perspective, copywriting is either a skill to learn or something you can pay a freelancer *very cheaply* to do.

I don't want people reading this to think copywriting = sales. Copywriting is not sales, it is copywriting.

Sales = sales. And sometimes sales does not even equals sales when a customer does not pay you. So dollars in the bank is the only thing that really equals sales.

There are tons or resources out there, so why recreate the wheel? Can you please provide real data on how your copy has had a significant impact on you or your client's business?
With all due respect, I'd disagree. I stand by my definition of copywriting is salesmanship in-print.

Look, I'm talking about direct-response copywriting. It's where you write something that has a direct impact on your sales.

Let me give you some examples:

You can send a proposal out that gets a meeting that you then close. (the words on that proposal are copy).
You can write an advertisement that brings in hundreds of leads for your business (you can't expect to close all of them but you might close a few, ergo you've made sales).
You can write a sales script and use it to close people on the phone (more sales).
You can create a online sales page and make sales by running traffic to it.
You can create an email sequence that generates sales.
You can write a sales letter and do a mail drop that generates revenue for your business.
You can optimise your e-commerce store with copy and thus increase your conversion rate. Result? you've made more sale.
The list goes on...

Quite frankly, if you've been paying a "copywriter" and haven't seen a boost in conversion rate or sales then all you've paid for is creative writing.

I'm talking about the real type of copy...

Why do you think some freelancers can command such high rates for words on a page?

It's because the business owner that pays for them should expect to see an ROI.

FACT: 7 and 8 figure + Businesses have been built off copywriting. Look at Agora and people like Dan Kennedy, Joe Sugarman, Bill Bonner etc.

In fact, if you sign up for certain email lists you'll find that they often employ copywriters to sell their stuff.

I'll use Dr. Axe.com as an example. It's currently an Inc. 500/5,000 fastest growing company. I know for a fact that they're using copywriters to fuel their growth because I've got an email account signed up to his list.

I routinely get emails which have links to sales pages (written by copywriters), and you can be sure they have a direct impact on sales otherwise they wouldn't be using them.

What's more, I've hand-written a couple of them to see how they tick. They do sell.

Finally, I don't typically take clients but I wrote an email for a friend who was doing some marketing for a fancy restaurant in London.

They sent THAT email to the restaurants email list and it generated 6 enquires from corporate clients who were looking to book an event for 12 or more people (that's a potential of 72 customers off one email).

Now, I don't know if they closed them but my point is that effective copy can and SHOULD have a direct impact on sales. Otherwise what's the point?

So yeah GOOD copywriting is sales because it sells. Simple as that.
 
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Lex DeVille

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Wonder what is @Lex DeVille answer to this.
My answer is you can't become immune to good copywriting because good copy doesn't look like copy and doesn't feel like you're being sold to. It addresses whatever problem you have and offers a solution and gives you a chance to get that solution. When it's done right you end up saying the exact right words to the exact right people at the exact right time. It's not a forced sale. It's barely even persuasion.
 

foodiepersecond

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My answer is you can't become immune to good copywriting because good copy doesn't look like copy and doesn't feel like you're being sold to. It addresses whatever problem you have and offers a solution and gives you a chance to get that solution. When it's done right you end up saying the exact right words to the exact right people at the exact right time. It's not a forced sale. It's barely even persuasion.
I actually took advantage of Lex's Halloween special and what a steal that was. About half way into the program and I've learned many pearls of wisdom. If its still up I suggest you jump on that.
 

Defection

Contributor
Oct 29, 2019
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41
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Good point... I'll give you the answer I read in Clyde Bedell's book how to write advertisements that sell.

In it, he talks about how the market is always on the move. What works now, when tried a couple of years later might flop.

So, as you've pointed out people are beginning to wake up to blatant sales pitches. That doesn't mean selling is going to STOP working. It just means the style will change.

So, the sales principles won't change necessarily it's just clever marketers are going to have to come up with new ways of expressing them.

So take urgency for instance - Instead of saying "HURRY!! We've only got 3 left" (which is often rubbish and off putting to people who are now spotting it).

You might instead say "I'm keeping this discount available until the 1st or until we've sold out"

They both use the PRINCIPLE of urgency which has been used in sales for long time - it's just a different way of expressing it.

My general rule of thumb is honesty.
Have real deadlines and real sales that end on the dates you set.

People may not initially believe them but when they come back and see you were telling the truth it builds trust. And, they'll believe you next time. You might lose out on a quick sale but long-term that's how I play the game.

My advice: Get creative in how you can honestly use sales principles.

Hopefully that helps.

Summary: yes, people are waking up and that just means the style of persuasion will change.
Personally, I believe honesty never goes out of fashion.
I may not have made myself completely clear in my previous post. It's more the 'one-sentence paragraphs' than it is the sales pitches that really grab my attention.

I spent a long time looking at various courses from online 'gurus' before I thankfully stumbled upon Unscripted, and ALL of their sales pitches seemed to read in pretty much exactly the same way. Every. Damn. Time!

Now every time I see something that looks like those, my bullsh*t-o-meter starts blazing.

It's more the structure of how they're trying to sell things that stands out, even MORE so than what they're selling, or how much they're trying to convince me to buy if that makes sense?
 

Defection

Contributor
Oct 29, 2019
19
41
17
The assumption being that entrepreneurship circles are "full of copywriting".

[Now, as an aside, "copywriting" used that way doesn't make any sense.
What you mean is "sales messages". Stuff trying to sell you something.]

But they aren't.

Full of copywriters, maybe, who write "on separate lines" (that is, write clearly).

The consumer world is choke-full of sales messages, much more than business circles.
You're right, I tried to clear that up a little in my previous post, as I don't think I explained myself particularly well.

There's writing clearly, and then there's just writing unnaturally, in my opinion.

Your mind should always be on potential bullshit mode.

So let's call that progress.

But here's the thing. What you're feeling is real.

Your interpretation isn't.

Answer me this:

Do you feel the same reaction when you see a tv commercial?

Do you feel the same reaction when you see the label of your favorite beer?

Those are sales messages too, and you are aware of it.

You buy things all the time, right?

You decided to sign up for this forum, right? Maybe based on the pitch in the book?

So what is going on?
As an example, this REALLY looks and sounds like one of those sale pitches. I feel like my mind is jumping from line to line, rather than reading it cleanly. (I don't mean that badly, either, just being honest.)

I think that you're assuming I'm anti-sales entirely, which isn't the case, just trying to understand the one-liners.

To me, personally, it feels like someone is trying to convince me of something, which I guess wouldn't be entirely wrong? (These are genuine questions, I'm interested in the theory behind it all.)

I truthfully haven't watched a TV commercial in a number of years, and I live in the UK where, in all honesty, I've mostly found them quite different from what I have seen of the US ones many years ago.

A friend recommended the forum as he suggested, as a friend with nothing to gain, that it seems like it could really help me to surround myself by like-minded people.

But, I completely understand what you're getting at.

You are experiencing cognitive dissonance.

It's pretty typical. You got interested in this wonderful world of business.

You became aware of direct response copywriting.
So your frame of reference in regards to what you see written on the internet has changed.

Now, every time you see something that looks like that...

The "being sold = bad" program in your mind that makes you react negatively to it, even when it's not selling anything.

And you realize its weird, at some level.
That's why you are asking in the first place. You pre-judged someone's post because of line breaks.

This will resolve itself in a while as your mind resolves the conundrum.

You'll become used to it, and stop having the same reaction.
You are already creating a new frame of reference ("some people just write like that").
That's fair, perhaps it's like you say - I spent too much time looking at bullsh*t guru scams and it made me have that impression. I still find it unnatural to read, though. If you ever tried to present me an entire book that was written like that, I couldn't sit and read my way through it as it doesn't flow well, for me. I guess it wouldn't be a book though, as it's a 'build-up' process, to typically having something at the end. Normally for $997, as MJ knows.

Now, to tackle your question.

A marketing message needs to be tailored to the market's psychology.

Read that line again.

A marketing message needs to be tailored to the market's psychology.

That's literally the copywriter's job.

So if the psychology changes, the marketing changes.

That is to answer your general question.

(By the way, the people who think they're "immune" to marketing... are the easiest to sell to. Because once they reach the hook point, they have very little friction as they think they are soo smart. In other words, once they bite, they aren't scared.)

But specifically, nothing is becoming "increasingly common" in "the real world".
If anything, direct-response style is becoming increasingly rare.

You just started being aware of it now. What you're experiencing is a state of mind in regard to a specific pattern your mind has just become aware of.
The rest of the world is not going through the same.

Incidentally, this is why someone's opinion on some copy means nothing unless they are part of the target market.

I see it this kind of skepticism all the time on this forum.
"I wouldn't believe a word of that".
So what? You are not the target market.
Thankfully I never did a buy, mainly because I found their copywriting so unbearable that it didn't seem believable. Maybe it could be something to do with being English, and how we're not used to having marketing pushed quite so harshly? I'm sure you'll know more than me on that one.

I don't believe one word of Tai Lopez's bullshit.
He still pulls in nine figures a year in sales.

EDIT: Refined some point for clarity.
Wait, Tai Lopez isn't legit?

:eyes:
 

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