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Copywriting 101: Writing Compelling Content That Sells

Monday, October 23, 2023

Writing Compelling Content That Sells

I can ask a few handful of questions to any copywriter and I will know whether they’re good or not. Now writing a compelling copy isn’t easy. You have to be a serious student of the game if you want to become a good copywriter.

Now, if at first you’re a beginner or even if you think you're intermediate. Meaning you’ve been writing copy for about 3-5 years, chances are you still lack your fundamentals. Here are some of my recommendations.

Copywriting 101

You want to start off by rewriting winners by hand on a legal pad or a notebook of some sort. You can find winners online from guys such as Gary Halbert, myself and many others. Now the question becomes, how much should I re-write? And why?

The truth is, you brain hasn’t manufactured the abilities of a great writer yet. It isn’t the norm yet. So a good exercise I used to do was write out winners by hand 100 times. Then I would try to beat it another 100 times. Then I would try to beat the headlines on a 3 x 5 card another 100 times.

Now many copywriters have never done that, outside of well, me. So that is, if you want to become a serious student of the game.

If you want to write compelling copy or content, I always recommend looking at winners. Model success. Use stories. Use celebrities. And use dramatic demonstrations like houdini and my good friends Penn & Teller.

See if a scientist invented a new medicine that made women look good, rather than having Mayo Clinic come out with a report and advertising it, I’d have Kim Kardashian. And I’m willing to bet every penny that I’d beat it with Kim Kardashian every single time.

So use those things.

Now let’s say you don’t want to go that route, fine. Here’s another:

you must use the basics. And by basics, I mean the very essence of good writing – grammar, punctuation, and structure. It might seem elementary, but these fundamentals act as the building blocks of all compelling copy.

And yet, understanding the rules of language is just the starting point.

Your next step? Deep, intensive research.

Dive into your product, dissect the market, and most importantly, understand the psyche of your customer. What keeps them up at night? What are their dreams? Their fears? The more intimately you know them, the better you can speak their language.

As you begin to write, remember: your headline is your first impression. It should be so captivating, so intriguing, that your reader is compelled to delve into the next line. And then the next. Until they've consumed every word you've penned.

Economic Vision

On your journey, gather tools and resources. One invaluable tool? A swipe file—a collection of great ads and copy that resonated with readers. Learn from them, but remember: draw inspiration, don't imitate.

When you sit down to craft your message, aim for clarity. Use your words to paint a vivid picture, but don't lose your reader in a maze of jargon. Remember: you're here to persuade, not to impress.

And as you describe your product or service, don't just list out its features. Transform them. Make them resonate by turning them into tangible benefits. Answer the age-old question your reader is silently asking: "What's in it for me?"

One of the most powerful tools in your arsenal is the art of storytelling. We're hardwired to love stories—they captivate us, they make us feel, and they stick with us. Use anecdotes and real-world examples to make your points come alive.

Now all the persuasion and engagement in the world means nothing if you don't clearly tell your reader what to do next. Craft a compelling call to action. Make it irresistible.

And of course, no masterpiece is created in a single draft. Refinement is key. Edit, revise, and polish until every word, every sentence, serves a purpose.

Remember, too, that in the world of direct response, results are measurable. Test your copy. Optimize it. Let the data guide you.

No copy is perfect, it’s the data that’ll tell you whether it’s good or not.

Never Give Up

I’ve had my own failures in my career too. Yes I’m great, but data will tell you more than anyone else.

Although if you want, you can always grab a few courses from my Whole Enchilada inside of my Diamond Membership. I have a course on Influential communication and copywriting, which was previously sold for $2,997, but if you’re part of our Diamond Membership, you can unlock your access for free.

And I will say this. My copywriters become lazy thinking they’re too good. If you want to get good, write your own stuff. Write your own sales letters, build your own audience, create your own ads. Put your money on your words, and see if they convert. You tend to be more serious when money is on the line. So use it wisely, and take it seriously.

And no, you will not always have winners, but when you do, you’ll make more than you care to imagine. It’s almost like having your hands that create gold out of thin air. That is what good copy is all about. So if you’re a serious student, go dive right in, you’ve got a lot of work and learning to be done. Don’t expect to become great within a year, even if you think you’re special. You’re not. Even if you have a few winners under your belt. Increase your percentage of winners in different categories or markets.

It’s great if you become a great copywriter in a niched specific market, but if you can do it with different marketers it’s even better.

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