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The Rules of Copywriting

by
David H Aldridge

 

00001.jpgRequired legal notice

Whilst the information contained within this course is based on proven and sound business practice, neither the author or publisher assumes any responsibility for errors, omissions or contrary interpretation of the subject matter herein.

Neither the author nor the publisher can guarantee any success to the reader of this course, as this is solely dependent on the efforts of the reader.

Whilst the contents of this course are legal in the UK, it is the responsibility of the reader or purchaser to ascertain the legalities of the contents within, in there own countries jurisdiction.

“The Rules of Copywriting” by David H Aldridge © Copyright 2006 PLEASE NOTE. That this course is copyright. Users are given the right to give this course away for free as a promotional tool. It must not be sold. It must not be altered or changed in any way or added to.

Contents
Introduction. ................................................................................... 3

Module 1 . ..............................................................................................4
Positives & Negatives. .........................................................................4
The psychology of selling. ..................................................................6
The most powerful words to use. .......................................................8
Module 2. ..............................................................................................11 The secret of good headlines. ............................................................11 Know the product ... Know the customer. .........................................11The attention grabbing opening line. .................................................13

Module 3 . ............................................................................................... 15
The attention grabbing headline. ........................................................ 15
The sub headline. ................................................................................. 16

Module 4 . ..............................................................................................21
The rule of ‘AIDA’ . ...............................................................................21
The first sentence. ...............................................................................22

Module 5 . ...............................................................................................25
Grammar and all that stuff. ..................................................................25
The writing style explained. ................................................................26
The ending and post script. ................................................................28

Module 6 . ...............................................................................................32
How long should your sales letter be. .................................................32
Sales letter essentials in brief. ............................................................34
Typical sales letter layout. ...................................................................35
Typical sales letter order form. ............................................................36
The psychology of colours. ..................................................................37

Part 2.

Module 7 . ...............................................................................................40
What are classified ads? ......................................................................40
Writing a successful ad. ......................................................................41

Module 8 . ...............................................................................................47
Testing, have you got a successful ad? .............................................47
How to increase your ad profits. .........................................................48
And finally. ............................................................................................49
Details of marketing course. ................................................................50

Introduction.

 

Hello and welcome, first I would like to thank you for purchasing this manual.

 

Within these pages you will learn the art of good copywriting, a vital part of selling regardless of the type of product you are promoting.

 

Before we start, I think it a good idea to explain a few things to you.

First, what is actually meant when we say ‘copy’? Well copy refers to any written material, as apposed to photographs or other elements of layout in a large number of contexts including magazines, advertising, and book publishing.

More generally, the term copy refers to the text in books, magazines, and newspapers. In books it means the text as written by the author, in our case copy means the text that makes up the body of our sales letter or classified advert.

Another point is that the secrets of good copywriting that you will master in this manual, will set you in good stead for any of your writing needs; writing business letters to other marketers for example.

Now I have presumed that you’re in the information marketing business, or thinking of starting in the business, if so, you will find that the contents of this manual, whether marketing online, offline or both, will give you the edge you need to succeed.

I cannot emphasise enough the importance of good copywriting in the marketing business, so study the contents well, have this manual with you when writing your copy and refer to it often.

I wish you every success.

 

Very best wishes.

 

00002.jpgDavid H Aldridge.

 

Module 1. Positives & Negatives. OK, to start the course off we’re going to look at positive and negative words, statements and headlines.

Now you may think it obvious, that in order to encourage a potential customer to buy your product, you would explain all the benefits that your product can offer them in a positive way.

(REMEMBER, PEOPLE BUY BENEFITS)

 

However, you could insert a negative without actually realising it, for example: “This plan could change your life forever !”

What does the word ‘ could’ mean to you? It means may, possibly, perhaps, not therefore a very positive statement or headline is it? No it isn't, would the next headline be better do you think?

“This plan will change your life forever !”

Well yes it is better, you are stating in a positive way, that your product will have a life changing affect on the reader once they have purchased your product.

“This plan will change your life forever , I guarantee it !”

This is even better, you are offering two big benefits, a life changing plan (whatever the product may be), plus a guarantee. There’s also a benefit to you, by offering a guarantee in your headline the reader will think they’ve nothing to lose by reading the rest of your copy.

Now the headlines above are merely to demonstrate positives and negatives, I have used the word ‘plan’ instead of a product name or description that would give an indication to the reader as to what was being offered to them.

For example.

 

“This Acne Cream will change your life forever !” guaranteed or your money back

So you have told the reader exactly what’s being offered to them, but what about the words ‘will change your life forever’? Well knowing someone that suffers from acne, I would think that phrase would be very meaningful to them.

So the secret of writing positive headlines and copy, is not only knowing your product but also getting to know who your likely customers are, you need to understand their dreams, their desires, their wants and expectations.

You then use the most appropriate words in your headline and indeed your copy, to fire up their dreams, desires, their wants and expectations, and in some cases to satisfy their needs, as in the case of acne sufferers etc.

“This Golf course will change your life forever !” guaranteed or your money back

I don’t think that even the most fanatical golfer would consider that playing a better game would ‘change their life forever‘ and besides, the headline doesn't even mention improving their game, so it’s a negative, to write a positive headline you need to understand the dreams and desires of golfers.

“Play Golf like a pro in 8 days or your money back !”

Now that’s better, all golfers want to play golf like a pro, don’t they? Of course they do, so you’ve got their attention, and your money back guarantee will encourage them to read your copy, well they've nothing to lose have they.

Well I hope that has given you some idea as to writing positive copy, as apposed to negative.

 

The next part of this module is probably one of the most important parts for you to understand.

 

The psychology of selling.

 

Don’t worry ... I’m not going to do the science bit here, but what you are going to learn now will make understanding the rest of this course far easier.

 

Basically you have three brains, or three parts to your brain, they are called: The Cerebral Cortex - The Limbic System - and The Brainstem Functions.

Each of these brains or parts of your brain, have different ways of doing things, and more importantly to you, the copywriter, have different ways that they process information and move toward a decision or action.

Let’s go through them one at a time, stay with me, as you will see this is very important.

 

The Cerebral Cortex (The Thinker Brain).

 

The Thinker Brain is most developed in humans, and is the part called the Cerebral Cortex in other words the ‘grey matter‘.

It’s this part of the brain where our conscious activity goes on. Our conscious thought processes, logic functions, and all of our upper level thinking takes place here.

The Thinker Brain acts as the ‘ input processor‘, it processes whatever is placed there. And it can only work on one problem at a time (you should keep that in mind).

Now it’s with this part of the brain that we can think logically, and be able to solve problems, so you may think this part of the brain is a great benefit, and of course it is.

The problem is when it comes to motivations, it’s the weakest part of our brain, it tends to tire quickly, it is prone to ’drifting off’ (daydreaming), and sometimes just goes blank.

This part of the brain is the first to receive or be aware of a problem, but it won't act on the problem, it will only ‘think about it’, now you want your reader to act, to make a decisive decision to buy your product.

So you don’t aim your copy at this part of the brain. Let’s have a look at the second brain part.

 

The Limbic System (Mammalian Brain).

 

The Mammalian Brain is found in mammals and other animals, and is located in the limbic system, look on it as your ‘middle brain‘.

The Mammalian Brain is where all your unconscious or subconscious activity happens, so how do we communicate with the Mammalian Brain? Well the best way to get through is on a ‘touchy-feely’ level.

It’s this part of the brain that gives us a sense of belonging, it gives us the ’herd’ or ‘group’ mentality, I suppose you could say it makes us what is perceived as civilised.

So is this the part of the brain that we need, as copywriters, to communicate with? Well no, you see this part of the brain wants to make decisions but can’t, at least not on it’s own.

That only leaves the third part, so let’s see why.

 

The Brainstem Functions (Reptilian Brain).

The Reptilian Brain is found in all animals and therefore of course in humans, it is located in the Brainstem and controls all of the automatic brainstem functions.

It’s the Reptilian Brain where all preconscious activity happens, where all preconscious experience has been programmed into us from generation to generation from when humans first walked on this planet.

The Reptilian Brain is always working and is the strongest part of our brain, it is concerned with one thing and one thing only ... OUR SURVIVAL.

 

The Reptilian Brain is selfish in it’s attempt to keep us safe, it’s purely ’Self Interest’ and ‘Survival Motivated’, it’s not concerned with anything else.

 

To this end it will, when trying to automatically decide whether something is good or not, ask the question ... ‘Is This Safe?’ Is this beneficial to me.

So the Reptilian Brain is capable of making a decision, it is actually the supreme decision maker, the ultimate authority for taking action, it can decide immediately whether to take action now, or send the information to the other brain parts for justification using logic and group functions.
Perhaps the most important attribute of the Reptilian Brain for copywriters, is the fact that it is the centre for... emotional and instinctual responses.

So your job as a copywriter is to appeal to the emotions of the reader, to develop your skills to communicate with this part of the brain.

 

Your copy will communicate with people's emotions first, and then give them the reasons why to help them justify (and defend) their decisions with logic).

That's why you will be shown how to compose attention grabbing headlines,
headlines with powerful benefits with attractive guarantees that will answer the question is it safe?

In other words your copy, by using the above and some carefully chosen powerful words (more in a moment), should remove all objections by offering great benefits and your guarantees will make it totally safe .

OK let’s now look at some tried and tested words you can use in your headlines and copy.

 

The most powerful words to use.

 

Below are powerful attention grabbing words that you can use in your headlines and sprinkled throughout your copy.

Are You Still...
"Are You Still" in your headline will not only grab your readers attention, but
also get your potential customer to say yes to the question, in other words
agree with you, (in this example your targeted customers are those that
haven't bought a new computer for a number of years
).
For example:

“Are You Still Using That Old Slow Computer?”

Breaking News...
A "Breaking News" headline grabs the readers attention because breaking news is new, it has the air of importance about it, the reader will want to know more.
For example: (targeted to those suffering from acne).

"Breaking News! Scientist Finds Cure For Acne !”

Discover...
"Discover" in your headline grabs your readers attention because everyone
likes to discover something new that could benefit them.
For example: (for fitness and those that want to lose weight).

“Discover The Secrets Of Permanent Weight loss !”

Exposed...
"Exposed" in your headline grabs your readers attention because they will
want to know what’s been hidden from them, they will want to know what’s it
all about, people are naturally inquisitive.
For example: (for customers interested in property developing).

“Tricks of a Property Developer Exposed !”

FREE...
“Free” the word FREE is one of the most powerful words of all, try to use it wherever you can, i.e. Free Bonus, Free Trial, etc.
For example: (suitable for any repeat product)

“This Acne Cream Will Change Your Life Forever !” Guaranteed ... FREE Trial Offer.

How To...
"How To" in your headline will get the readers attention because there’s
something that they could learn and benefit them somehow.
For example: (for targeted customers interested in fishing).

“How To Master Fly Fishing In 8 Days or less !” Or Your Money Back

 

I’m sure you understand now, how you can use powerful words and phrases in your headlines and copy, so I’m just going to list the rest on the next page.

 

For the latest FREE version of this course go to www.makeinamonth.com/update.htm

Awesome
Do You...
Exclusive...
Fact...
How I...
I Dare You...
Imagine...
Introducing
Inside Secrets...
Last Chance...
Magic...
Make Money...
New...
Never Seen Before... Now You Can...
Proven...
Reasons To...
Results...
Save...
Save Money...
Secrets Of....
Sex...
Stop...
Take Advantage... Testimonial...
They Laughed... Time Sensitive... Treat Yourself... Truth About...
Uncensored...
Unlock...
Warning...
Ways To...
Which Of...

OK, in this module you have found out about the psychology of selling, only using positives in your headlines and copy, you have also a list of the most powerful attention grabbing words and phrases that you can use.

This is an important module in as much that it gives or explains the basics for producing great copy, and for you to become a great copywriter.

The information given thus far will I hope, give you a greater insight or understanding of the copywriting rules you need to follow and that will be explained in detail throughout the rest of this course.

So let’s move on now to the next module, and find out exactly what makes a good headline.

 

For the latest FREE version of this course go to www.makeinamonth.com/update.htm

 

Module 2.
The secret of good headlines.

So, what is a good headline? Well a good headline must excite your reader, it must connect with them in some way, it must be relevant to them, it must fire up their ambitions, awaken their dreams their desires and make them read on.

Your headline must make the reader think that it’s written specifically with them in mind, in other words your headline is not about your product; it’s about your customer.

The object of your headline is to help generate sales by connecting with the reader in such a way that the thought of ignoring it is totally eliminated.

 

Now I touched on this subject in the first module, but now we are going to look at it in detail, and that is:

 

Know your product ... Know your customer.

I hope you know your product inside out, you certainly should, so now it’s time to put yourself in the shoes of your targeted market, the people that you think are most likely to be interested in your product.

Let’s say as an example, that you have a course on keeping fit, in particular a course that has an exercise regime that mainly concentrates on the chest and stomach areas of the male body.

The exercise plan is scientifically formulated; the workout takes twenty minutes per day, and positive results should be seen within six weeks or less, so that’s your product for this exercise.

Now you need to get to know your customer, so think now, what sort of person do you think would be interested in your product?

 

Well ... go on then ... think about it.

Just bear in mind one thing, you have about 3 to 5 seconds to grab your readers attention with your headline, 3 to 5 seconds to persuade them to read your copy, 3 to 5 seconds to fire up their interest and realize the benefits that your product can offer them.
So who are your potential customers? Well you can rule out the Arnold Schwarzenegger’s of this world, they probably already have exercise regimes that they religiously follow, and you can probably rule out most (but not all) teenagers.

If you do some research, you will find that its harder for men to keep what they perceive as the ideal body shape from around age 27 onwards (mainly due to lifestyles), and as you get older it gets harder.

So in this example, your main target market are men in their late twenties, to late forties, Why? Well partly VANITY, now of course men under 27, and in particular teenagers, are known for their vanity. Aren't we all?

The problem is, their concerns are about their clothes etc, they will stand in front of a mirror for ages adjusting their dress, making sure every hair on their head is in the right place, trying to hide spots and pimples before going out.

They will however be less concerned about their body shape, most will at that age still have a good body shape, so whilst the under twenty fives shouldn't be written off as potential customers, they are not your target market.

Equally, those over 50 have either given up the fight to retain a good body shape, or simply don’t give a damn as to what people think of them anymore.

Now of course that doesn't include all men over 50, a lot will still have concerns about their body shape and indeed their health, so of course are potential customers, but for the reasons given above, are not your target market.

No, your target market (your largest likely market) are men aged 27 to say around 45, who are ... to say the least ... a bit out of shape.

 

Men who are still at the age whereupon they would like to maintain, or regain their youthful toned body shape.

 

So now you have identified your target market, you need to write your headline aimed specifically at them.

A headline normally contains 3 parts, the first line, called the ‘overline’. The middle line or lines are called the ‘main headline’. And the last line called the ‘main subhead’.

The attention grabbing opening line.

OK, on this page I have listed a few opening lines ( overline) to a header, now I haven’t spent a great deal of time on them, I have just given you some ideas.

Why? Well it’s your turn to do some work, get yourself a sheet of paper and a pen, and see how many opening lines you can come up with, they don’t have to be in the form of questions, you could write a compelling statement.

Just keep in mind what major benefits your product can offer your targeted market, keep in mind their desires and dreams not forgetting the ‘vanity factor’.

Ok, how about this one? Can you do better? Men ... Are you happy with your body ?
Or
Men ... Are you looking a bit out of shape ?
Or
Men ... Have you the body of Her dreams ?

 

Or a statement like: “ Men ... You Can Have The Body Of Your Dreams !”
Or
“ Men ..Get A Great Body And Be The Envy Of Your Friends !”

 

Away you go then, put your thinking cap on, see what you can come up with, come back when you’re done, I’ll still be here ... on the next page.

TIP .
To get some great ideas for headlines go to
www.clickbank.com and click on ‘Buy Products’, on the page that comes up will be a search box, enter the subject of your product and you will find hundreds of similar products to yours.

Now obviously you can’t copy someone else's headline word for word, but you can get some brilliant ideas.

 

Welcome back, how many lines did you come up with then?

Now once you have come up with a list of opening lines for your header, go through them and pick the one you consider the most appropriate, the one you think is most likely to grab the readers attention.

You can involve your family and friends in this, explain the product to them and ask which opening line of your header would most attract them, which would inspire them to find out more and read on.

Now the opening line that you have come up with, or indeed the headline itself, is not written in stone, by that I mean that your present best attempt to come up with a compelling line or headline may not be the one you end up using.

You may be watching TV or reading the newspaper when a blockbuster headline pops into your mind.

 

This often happens to me, should this happen to you then write it down immediately, some of the most brilliant headlines are born this way.

 

Ok, before moving on to the next module where you will learn about writing the headline and sub headline, I think it a good idea to have a little recap.

1) You must know your product, you must be passionate about it, you must believe in it, you need to know every possible benefit that your product offers, and above all, it must do what you claim it does.

2) You must know your customer, you must establish your target market, you must find out all you can about your potential customer, you must try to imagine their problems, worries, dreams and their goals in life.

3) Your headline must be about the customer not your product, it should state the most powerful benefit using the most powerful words most suited to your target market.

Remember one very important fact when composing your sales letter:

 

People do not buy products, they buy the BENEFITS that the product can give them.
Module 3. The attention grabbing headline.

Ok, now you have, or should have, an opening line for your headline, the most compelling and powerful line from your list, so now its time to come up with the body of the headline.

Now for this exercise I have chosen one of the examples that I gave you in the last module.

 

Men ... Are you truly happy with your body shape?

It’s the one on the top of my list, now if you’ve been paying attention you may have noticed some slight changes, I have added the words truly and shape to the line (go back to page 13 and see the original).

This is the way things happen when trying to come up with powerful attention grabbing headlines, as I mentioned earlier, you could be doing something entirely different, like reading the newspaper or watching TV when an idea suddenly pops into your head.

So OK, we have our opening line so what are we going to say in the body of our headline?

Well you first have to remember the object of your headline, the object is to grab the readers attention and interest them enough to want to read the rest of your copy.

Next we need remind ourselves of the major benefits that our product can give to the prospective customer.

 

And thirdly we need look at our customer profile, the wants, desires and dreams of our targeted market.

Ok, I’m going to put my thinking cap on now and see what I can come up with, I want you to do the same, write down as many headlines as you can to follow on from your opening line.

You may find that you need to add to or change in some way your opening line that’s fine. Ok lets get to work ... when you’re done, I’ll see you on the next page.
Hello again, so what did you come up with?

Well below you can see my first attempt, what do you think?

 

Men ... Are you truly happy with your body shape?
“Well now YOU can get that manly chest .. That flat six pack stomach in six weeks or less .. GUARANTEED !”

 

Now as I have already said, your headline is not written in stone, it will evolve over time as new ideas and words pop into your head.

 

So when you start to make a list of possible headlines just keep in mind the basic requirements you have learned so far and let it progress from there.

 

OK, so that’s the opening line and the main body of the headline done, now we need to consider the sub header.

Now you may think that for your product you don’t need a sub header, well that will have to be your decision, just bear in mind that the more benefits you pack into your headline, the more likely your prospective customer will want to know more.

The sub headline.

 

So here we are, about to work on the last part of the headline for our product.

Now the sub header should lead the reader onto the first sentence of the first paragraph of your copy, just remember to include more benefits and use the most powerful words.

I’ve just had a thought, you may be asking, why do I have to compose the headline in three parts? Well actually you don’t, you could just make a list of complete headlines.

The fact is, that for beginners, I think it better if you have three lists, one for each part of your headline, you will then end up with far more choices giving more ideas than you would if you made just one list of complete headlines. You can then ‘pick ’n mix’ as it were, couple this with the fact that new ideas are going to ‘pop into your mind’ (normally when you least expect them).

I think that the methods of composing headlines explained thus far, gives the beginner the best chance of coming up with very good, if not brilliant, headlines.

So come on then, time to get the thinking cap on again, try and come up with as many sub headers as you can, the more the merrier.

 

Just remember the criteria for your sub header (given on the last page).

 

Now whilst you’re compiling your list, I’ll be thinking up some sub headers myself, so as soon as you’re done, I’ll see you on the next page.

 

No peeking at my attempt until you have completed your list.

 

“Wealth is the product of man’s capacity to think.”
Ayn Rand

 

00001.jpgFor the latest FREE version of this course go to www.makeinamonth.com/update.htm

 

OK, welcome back, how did you get on? Have you got a nice long list of sub headers?

 

Right then, you can now see my sub header below.

 

Men ... Are you truly happy with your body shape?
“Well now YOU can get that manly chest .. That flat six pack stomach in six weeks or less .. OR YOUR MONEY BACK !”
This easy 20 minute a day scientifically formulated plan will give you the body of your dreams .. GUARANTEED.

So from my list I have come up with the complete headline above, notice that I have again made some changes, I have inserted ‘or your money back’ in place of ‘guaranteed’ in the body header.

Now also from my list I have come up with another headline below that’s up for consideration, but does it ask too many questions?

 

Men ... Are you truly happy with your body shape?

Would you like an awesome chest? A flat six-pack stomach? Would you like to achieve this dramatic change in six weeks or your money back?

Well you can ... this easy 20 minute a day scientifically formulated plan will give you the body of your dreams .. GUARANTEED.

The problem with asking too many questions, is that you run the risk of getting a negative answer, but there are some good ideas in that headline that could be adapted, so I will keep it on my list.
Now by studying my lists of opening lines, main body headers and sub headers, and also my list of most powerful words, I have come up with another headline that’s a strong contender.

The power words that I selected are:

 

Awesome - Introducing - Incredible - Incredibly - Powerful - Incinerate Stubborn

 

And the headline.

 

Men ... Incinerate Stubborn Stomach Fat

Get yourself back in shape with a fuller chest ... A flat six pack stomach AND do it all in six weeks or less Guaranteed Or your money back.

Introducing the most powerful scientifically formulated programme ever ... For just 20 minutes a day you really can have the body of your dreams.

I think I’m getting somewhere now, do you see how by using your lists of possible opening lines, headers and sub headers combined with your list of powerful words you can develop your headline into a great headline?

There is just one thing that worries me about the headline above, and that’s the statement ‘For just 20 minutes a day’ , it sounds like hard work, it could therefore be a negative.

How can I change that statement into a positive, or even a benefit?

 

Come on then, how do you think it can be done?

Ok, I’ve had more time to think about it than you have, so here’s my solution, first I would remove the ‘20 minutes a day’ from my headline, but I must give full details of my product in my sales letter.

That means it’s got to be included somewhere, so I think lower down in the copy would be a good place to include it, but how do I turn it into a benefit? Well you could make a statement that the potential customer can’t dispute, a statement that the prospect deep down knows to be the truth, such as:

You and I both know that there are no magic bullets, no magic potions that will give you the body of your dreams while you sleep, no, to get the body of your dreams would normally take hours and hours of arduous exercises in the gym.

Well I’ve good news for you, this new scientifically formulated programme means that you can get the body of your dreams by just following a simple easy to do exercise that takes just 20 minutes a day, that’s right, just 20 minutes a day.

So the first paragraph makes a statement that the potential customer knows, deep down, to be the truth, this will help build trust, I’ve also turned a negative into a positive and even a benefit.

Again it’s a question of trying to get into the mind of your prospect, eliminate any doubts they may have by eliminating any negatives.

Everyone looks for the magic bullets, the magic potion that can change their life in some way without them having to do anything to achieve it, everyone knows deep down that magic bullets and potions don’t exist, this doesn't stop them from looking however.

What you must do, in the way you draft your sales letter, is convince them that your product will enable them to achieve all that they want to achieve, and that your product is the next best thing to the impossible.

Ok, you have now learnt what I consider to be the best method for coming up with ideas on writing attention grabbing headlines, especially for those just starting out in the copywriting business.

Now what we are doing in the first part of this course, is to go through the process of compiling a sales letter that promotes some sort of product, it doesn't matter what product.

The composition of the sales letter, or the way the sales letter is constructed is the same, so for this you will need to understand:

 

THE RULE OF ‘AIDA’
Module 4.
The rule of ‘AIDA’.

So who’s Aida ? I hear you say, well Aida’s not my other half, it’s a fully tried and tested formula, a formula that you must use in order to write successful sales letters that sell products.

Lets now look at the ‘AIDA’ formula in detail.

A ttention. Your sales letter must at the very beginning grab the attention of the reader, this is achieved with a powerful headline full of benefits that the reader is looking for, so you need to know your customer.

Interest. Your headline should lead on to the first sentence in your first

paragraph, this should arouse the readers interest by reinforcing the benefits in the headline and offering more benefits to come, in order to encourage the reader to read the rest of your copy.

You could end your first paragraph with ’Allow me to explain’ for example.

 

Desire. Once your reader has been encouraged to read the rest of your

copy, it’s here that you must get your reader to desire your product.
You do this by stating the readers problems, worries or desires etc,
you then promise or explain that your product will solve their
problems, answer their worries, fulfil their desires.

AND STATE MORE BENEFITS.
A
ction. At the end of your sales letter you must call the reader to action, by

getting them to order your product, it’s no good asking them to order, they need to know exactly what they need do in order to benefit from your product. In other words you end your copy in

such a way that it’s taken for granted that the reader is going to order your product, you merely give clear instructions on how they should do this.

Well that’s the rule of ‘AIDA’, I suggest you learn it by heart, follow the ‘AIDA’ rule and you’re well on your way to composing successful sales letters.

 

The first sentence.

Now as I’ve already stated, we’re going to go through the process of writing a sales letter step by step, well we’ve worked on the headline, so now it’s time to work on the first sentence and the first paragraph.

So it’s time for you to get a sheet of A4 paper (same size as this page), or of course you could work on your computer.

At the top of the page write out in big letters your complete headline, if you are going to do this exercise on your computer, you could put your headline in a box and colour the box ... say in yellow? You could have the text of your headline in blue? Or perhaps red?

More on the layout of your sales letter later.

Ok then, we are now ready to compose our first paragraph starting with the first sentence, so on goes our thinking caps again, remember to consult ’AIDA’ and your list of powerful words.

The object of your first paragraph is to reinforce your headline, give more benefits, and to make your reader inquisitive enough to want to find out more, in other words, read the rest of your copy.

So away you go then, I’m going to write my opening paragraph on the next page, but try not to peek, try to come up with your own ideas.

 

On saying that, there’s nothing wrong with getting ideas by going to www.clickbank.com
AND REMEMBER

PEOPLE BUY BENEFITS

So welcome back, have you got your opening paragraph?

 

Have a look at my one below and see what you think.

 

Men ... Incinerate Stubborn Stomach Fat

Get yourself back in shape with a fuller chest ... A flat six pack stomach AND do it all in six weeks or less Guaranteed Or your money back.

Introducing the most powerful scientifically formulated programme ever ... now you really can have the body of your dreams.

Dear customer

When you look in the mirror, do you really see the body that you truly desire? Well very soon you will be very proud of your body. If the thought of spending hours and hours of gruelling exercises puts you off, I’ve got good news for you ... Allow me to explain....

Well there it is, but does it meet all the required criteria?

 

(1) Does it lead on from the headline?

 

(2) Does it offer more benefits?

 

(3) Does it excite the reader?

 

(4) Does it make the reader inquisitive enough to want to find out more?

 

Well it’s a start, I shall no doubt try to improve it as more ideas come to mind.

In fact, I have already composed another opening paragraph on the next page that I think could be a strong contender, you should do the same, write down all the ideas that spring to mind, it will make it much easier. So here it is, I think it a lot more powerful than the first, but I will still work on it.

Men ... Incinerate Stubborn Stomach Fat

Get yourself back in shape with a fuller chest ... A flat six pack stomach AND do it all in six weeks or less Guaranteed Or your money back.

Introducing the most powerful scientifically formulated programme ever ... now you really can have the body of your dreams.

Dear customer

This new scientifically formulated Fat Loss & Fitness program will give you the body you desire in no time at all, you won’t spend hours and hours of gruelling exercises, you won’t spend months seeing no results, this new program eliminates all that ... Allow me to explain....

Ok, hopefully you now have some opening paragraphs that you can practice with and maybe improve upon, also you have learned the ’tricks of the trade’ as it were in order to compose powerful headlines and opening paragraphs.

We now need to move on to the body copy itself, now we can’t do an exercise as we did with the headline and opening paragraph, we can’t write the copy word for word.

To be able to do that we would need the actual product, we would need to read it in order to give all the benefits and fully describe the product to the reader.

What I can do though, is explain all the rules you need follow in order to write great copy, I’m going to start with the layout and writing style that you need to adopt , so lets make a start.

Module 5. Grammar and all that stuff.

Now whilst you must obviously be able to string a sentence together, and make your writing clearly understood, grammatically correct writing is not required in copywriting.

In truth, grammatically correct writing is not recommended, what you must achieve in the copy of your sales letter is the feeling (from the point of view of the reader), that you are talking to them on a one to one personal basis.

You should imagine when composing your copy, that you are sitting in their living room explaining your product directly to them.

 

So, bearing the above in mind, let me ask you a question ... do you talk in a grammatically correct way?

 

Unless you’re 0.01% of the population, I’ll assume your answer is NO.

 

The problem with grammatically correct documents (I’m sure you’ve come across them), is that generally they are ... BORING.

 

Now I hope that I don’t have to tell you that your copy must never be boring.

 

Do you remember in module 1 we discussed the parts of the human brain?

Do you remember ‘The Cerebral Cortex’ ( The Thinker Brain)? It’s the part of the brain that tires very quickly, it’s the part that tends to ‘drift off’ to go walkabout in daydream land.

The last thing you need is to lose your reader, if you lose your reader ... you lose a sale ... you need to interest your reader... you need to inspire them ... you need to keep them focused.

To that end you need to write the way you would speak to them, and not only that, your copy should be written in a style that visibly looks as though you are talking to the reader on a one to one basis.

Let’s now see how this can be achieved.

 

The writing style explained.

 

OK, in the first part of this module you learned the importance of keeping your reader (prospective customer), interested and focused.

 

The more of your copy they read, the greater the chance they will buy.

Now one way of achieving this objective is to write short paragraphs, there’s nothing worse in my mind than coming across a paragraph that’s about a quarter of a page long.

The first thing that enters my mind is: ‘ O God have I got to plough through that lot’, I’m sure you have come across the same situation, I’m also sure your reader will think the same.

Remember your job as a copywriter, amongst other things, is to remove any or all objections your reader may have, so to help accomplish this you write short paragraphs.

So how short? Well look at the way this course has been laid out, you will see that most of my paragraphs are three lines of text long, four lines of text is the absolute maximum, but try to stick to three or less.

Remember, your copy should be laid out in such a way as to appear that you are talking to the reader, to this end it is perfectly acceptable to have one or two line paragraphs.

Another thing that I would like to bring to your attention, is the use of commas and semicolons (;), now when you talk to someone you wouldn't speak in a long non-stop stream of words.

You would take breaks, either to give the listener a chance to take in what you have just said, or indeed to come up for air, either way, in order to write as you would speak, every time you take a break you stick in a comma.

You would normally emphasise a longer break with a semicolon (;), but let me show you something.

1) This product offers great benefits, wouldn't you agree? Or
2) This product offers great benefits; wouldn't you agree? Or
3) This product offers great benefits ... wouldn't you agree?

Now it’s not a question as to which of the three statements on the last page is the most grammatically correct, no, its about which one best gets the message across, its about which one is the more powerful.

So if you want a long break to emphasise a point, or give the reader time to take in a statement, then you could use option 3, again its a question of making your text look more like the spoken word.

Another thing you should be aware of, is that research has found that only about 40% of what most people read is actually remembered, so don’t be afraid to repeat all major benefits two or three times throughout your copy.

Just explain them in a different way, approach them from a different angle if you will, this will log those benefits into the mind of the reader.

After reading something, a story in a book for example, you wouldn’t remember every word, but your reading would have allowed you to build up a picture, a general impression as to what was going on.

It’s the way the brain works ( very broadly speaking), so part of your job as a copywriter is to ensure that by the time your reader gets to the end of your copy, they have a picture in their mind full of good things about your product.

Full of the benefits your product will give them, this positive picture in their mind will build a desire for the product, they will want to try it for themselves, couple this with your call to action (see rule of AIDA), and you’ve got a sale.

So let’s now look at how to end your sales letter, how to call your reader to action, and how to get them to buy your product.

 

REMEMBER
YOU MUST REMOVE ALL NATURAL OBJECTIONS TO READING YOUR COPY.
YOU MUST REMOVE ALL NATURAL OBJECTIONS TO BUYING YOUR PRODUCT.

 

For the latest FREE version of this course go to www.makeinamonth.com/update.htm

The ending and post script.
Now I have already made it clear, that you must remove all or any objections that your prospective customer may have when it comes to ordering your product.

You have to remember that your prospective customer, will not be able to see or touch your product until after they have parted with their money.

 

When they go shopping in the high street or shopping mall, they can see the product they are interested in; they can compare it with other similar products.

So there is a natural objection to ordering your product, one way of overcoming this objection is of course by fully explaining your product in your copy, giving every single detail about it plus of course the ... benefits.

Another way is to restate your ‘cast iron money back guarantee’.

And yet another way is to make an offer to your prospective customer that they can’t refuse, for example in the form of a free bonus. (Note the use of the magic word ‘free).

Order within 7 days and you will receive ... completely FREE ... a complementary course that will teach you how to (whatever) that is yours to keep, even if you return (main product) under my full cast iron money back guarantee...So order now, you can’t lose.

Now the above is one way to remove all risk, and therefore removing the natural objection to ordering your product; note that it also tells the reader to order within 7 days.

It’s important that you get the reader to order as soon as possible, preferably whilst they still have your sales letter in their hands, if the reader puts your sales letter down, with the intention of ordering later, you can safely assume that nine times out of ten, you have lost a sale.

So lets look at another example to get the reader to order now.

 

BENEFITS SELL PRODUCTS.

My course on ( product name) is normally offered for £127, but for a limited period ... and if you order now ... I will send you (product name) for the special price of just £67.

Yes that’s right, you can get this valuable course for virtually half price, but to take advantage of this special deal ... You must order now.

So pick up the phone and call our order hotline on 1234 567 8910 to reserve your copy of (product name).

Remember, as well as this special deal, you will still have my personal full cast iron money back guarantee...So be quick and order now, this deal can’t last for long.

So the above is another way to remove objections to buying your product, it also of course gets the reader to order now whilst they have your sales letter in their hands ... Well they will need it for the phone number ... won’t they?

Note. If your product is good, and it could truly benefit your target market, then you have a duty to try and persuade them to at least try it.

OK then, using our example product ( the lose fat & gain muscle one), see if you can come up with some ideas on how to remove the ‘buying objection’ and to get the prospective customer to ‘buy now’.

Now your offer must be realistic, it’s no good saying:

 

Order now ... and I will send you a cheque for £1000.

 

Sure you would get lots of orders; you would also end up bankrupt.

 

So make your offer of a special deal or free bonus obtainable, make it realistic.

 

Off you go then, see what you can come up with, see if you can come up with an idea that no one else has thought of.

 

When you’re done we will look at postscripts in your sales letter.

 

The Postscript.

Now the postscript ( P.S.) at the end of your sales letter is a very important part of it, if your copy has done its job, you would have painted a picture in the mind of your prospective customer full of great benefits your product will offer. You would have build up in the mind of your prospective customer a strong desire for the product, the P.S. is the ‘icing on the cake’ as it were, it should reinforce this positive picture in the mind of your reader.

The P.S. should remove any remaining doubts your prospective customer may have; so how do we go about doing this?

 

By the way before we start the postscript is written as P.S. and not as sometimes shown PS.* (*My spell checker is now having a go at me).

OK, I think the best way to reinforce this positive picture in the mind of your reader, is to restate the major benefits in your headline, so I’m going to write my P.S. now using my headline from our example product.

As an exercise I want you to do the same, you have your headline (I hope), so lets get started.

 

By the way, your P.S. should be short sharp and to the point, one paragraph three to five lines long should be the norm.

 

I have my headline below, I shall compose my P.S. on the next page, see you there when you have done yours.

 

Men ... Incinerate Stubborn Stomach Fat

Get yourself back in shape with a fuller chest ... A flat six pack stomach AND do it all in six weeks or less Guaranteed Or your money back.

Introducing the most powerful scientifically formulated programme ever ... now you really can have the body of your dreams.

P.S. Don’t forget, you can literally incinerate that stubborn stomach fat. You can get that flat six pack stomach and fuller chest...I guarantee it or your money back...You risk nothing except getting a great body, the body of your dreams.

You can see above my first attempt at compiling a postscript to my sales letter. How did you get on?

Now the one thing that I would recommend you DON’T do is go on to add a P.P.S. or P.P.P.S. that you sometimes see in sales letters, I think this diminishes the point of the P.S.

The object, as I have already mentioned, is to reinforce the positive mental picture in the mind of your reader, you shouldn't overdo it, there’s no need or at least there shouldn't be a need to go on and on.

Another way of composing a powerful P.S. is to state a strong benefit that‘s not been mentioned before in your sales letter, this will excite and surprise the reader, it is a powerful way of removing any remaining doubts.

There is however a risk here, if you hold back a major benefit you stand to lose your reader before they get to your P.S.

It depends on the product, if you can find say three really strong powerful benefits, you could put one in your headline, one early on in your copy and save the last for your P.S.

The rest of your copy would be sprinkled throughout with all the other benefits of course.

There is some research that suggests that most, or at least a lot of people read the headline then go straight to the postscript, I personally think it more likely that after reading the headline they go to the end of the sales letter looking for the product price.

Whatever the truth may be, I hope you now understand the importance of a strong powerful ending to your sales letter, and particularly the P.S.

 

Talking of endings, how long should your sales letter be? Well you can find out (amongst other things), in the next module.

 

Module 6. How long should your sales letter be?

There is amongst copywriters, a great debate as to how long a sales letter should be, some say that it should be short and to the point, others say that it should be long and written in a story format.

The reasoning behind the advocates of long sales letters is this, that providing the sales letter is interesting, the more a prospective customer reads, the more likely they are to buy the product.

In truth your sales letter should be as long as it need be. That’s a Mickey Mouse answer, I hear you say ... well let me explain.

Throughout this course ( so far) I have given the ingredients required to write powerful sales letters, I have explained that the reader cannot see your product until after they have paid for it.

You must therefore explain every detail, every feature of the product in your copy. You must also explain in detail every single benefit that the product can offer the reader.

You can also allow some space in your copy in order to sow a seed in the mind of the reader, to give them a glimpse of what life could be like after they have benefited from your product, for example:

What sort of holiday would you really like to have ... Lying on a golden sandy beach under palm trees? ... Well with the extra cash that this plan will give you, your dreams will soon be a reality.

Or:

What car would you really like to drive if you had the money? ...Well simply follow the step by step instructions given in this new manual, and you will soon be driving the car of your dreams.

Or using our example product:

Picture yourself on the beach this summer, with a full manly chest, a flat six pack stomach, getting admiring glances from the ladies and envious looks from the lads....

But please don’t overdo it, just sow a seed, let the readers imagination do the rest.

OK, now another tactic ( if that’s the right word) is to use bullet points, these are often used especially for online sales letters, basically they simply list the benefits that the product offers, for example:

Get a full manly chest in no time at all. A flat six pack stomach guaranteed.
The body of your dreams sooner than you think.

Etc, etc.

Now you can of course explain all the bullet points above in the normal way, in other words by not using bullet points, just include the information in your normal copy, its a matter of choice really.

The one thing you must never give room to in your sales letter is the ‘sob story’ No doubt you have received sales letters where the writer has given his or her life story, you know the sort of thing.

Where they were born in the gutter, as a kid had to share a bed with seven brothers and sisters, had to wear orange boxes for shoes, etc -etc -etc.

Please don’t go down that road, even if true it could cause scepticism, it could make the reader suspicious, they may lose trust in you, and that is the last thing you want ... isn't it.

So why do writers include ‘sob stories‘? Well the main reason is to akin themselves with the reader, now there’s nothing wrong with that, building an empathy with the reader is good, but is there a better way?

Well, I have already given you a way of doing this, allow me to repeat it here.

You need to put yourself in the shoes of the reader, you need to understand why they would want your product, and you need to understand their dreams, their desires, their wants and expectations.

You then explain that you understand, explain how your product will satisfy their dreams, their desires, their wants and expectations.

That’s how you akin yourself with the reader, that’s how you build trust. So there you have it, your sales letter should be long enough to include all the necessary things as mentioned in this course, and should be explained in full, and that’s how long your sales letter should be.

A good artist, who paints the best pictures, is the one who knows when to lay the brush down, when to stop painting.

 

Sales letter essentials in brief.

Now I realise there is quite a lot for you to take in, to help the recall process and to install the basics into your mind, I am going to list the essentials in brief below. I will also ask questions, try to answer these, they will help the learning process.

1) you need to study your product, learn it off by heart, then make a full list of all the features, then list every single benefit the product offers.
Q. Why do you need to explain the product to the reader? Revise p28 & 32

2) Study the potential customer, why would they want your product? Make a list of all their possible problems, concerns and worries etc.
Q. Why should you concern yourself with the readers problems? Revise p14
21 & 33

3) Using your lists of product features, product benefits, customer profile and list of powerful words, start compiling your headline.
Q. What method do I recommend for compiling headlines? Revise p16 & 17

4) Using the lists as mentioned in 3 above, start to write your copy. Q. What part of the brain should your copy target and why? Revise p7 & 8 Q. What impression should your copy leave in the mind of the reader?

Revise p27
Q. When you write your sales letter you should write in a _________ way.
What is the missing word?
Revise p 4

5) Write your postscript.

 

Q. What is the purpose of your P.S.? Revise p 30

Well there you are, if you do the little test above I’m sure you will find that some important points will become fixed in your mind. You should also make notes, that’s another way of locking in information.

OK, on the next page I have laid out a typical sales letter using our example product, and the paragraphs we have worked on so far.

 

Typical sales letter layout.
Men ... Incinerate Stubborn Stomach Fat

Get yourself back in shape with a fuller chest ... A flat six pack stomach AND do it all in six weeks or less Guaranteed Or your money back.

Introducing the most powerful scientifically formulated programme ever ... now you really can have the body of your dreams.

 

Dear customer

This new scientifically formulated Fat Loss & Fitness programme will give you the body you desire in no time at all, you won’t spend hours and hours of gruelling exercises, you won’t spend months seeing no results, this new programme eliminates all that ... Allow me to explain....

You and I both know that there are no magic bullets, no magic potions that will give you the body of your dreams while you sleep, no, to get a great body would normally take hours and hours of arduous exercises in the gym, well I’ve got some good news for you ...

This new scientifically formulated programme means that you can get the body you want by just following a simple easy to do exercise that takes just 20 minutes a day, that’s right, just 20 minutes a day.

The rest of your copy goes here, explaining the product in full and giving all the benefits taking as many pages as required.
You can split your copy with enticing sub headers to encourage the potential customer to read on. Note how I have made the end of each paragraph lead on to the next.

Order within 7 days and you will receive ... completely FREE ... a complementary course “Stay Young Longer” that will teach you how to keep that young looking skin tone.

This free course is yours to keep, even if you return “The six week muscle builder plan” under my full 30 day cast iron money back guarantee. So order now, you can’t lose.

So pick up the phone and call our order hotline now on 1234 567 8910 to reserve your copy of “The six week muscle builder plan“. Very best wishes. (Your name)

P.S. Don’t forget, you can literally incinerate that stubborn stomach fat. You can get that flat six pack stomach and fuller chest...I guarantee it or your money back...You risk nothing except getting a great body, the body of your dreams.

Typical sales letter order form.

I have given below a typical order form, now there are two ways of doing this; you can include an order form on a separate sheet of paper with your sales letter, or place it on the bottom half of the last page of the sales letter.

I prefer the latter method where space permits, it comes down to the momentum aspect, if on the top part of the page you list your special offers, your free bonus reports etc.

And right underneath is your order form, I think you stand a better chance of the customer filling in the form or calling your order hotline than if they had to look for the form on a separate sheet of paper.

Having to look for a separate form breaks momentum; it breaks the customer’s concentration, you should aim to avoid that.

 

Your copy explaining your special offers etc goes here.

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Apply for theThe six week muscle builder plan’ NOW.

Ok (your name) yes I do want a fuller chest and six pack stomach, so please send me the “The six week muscle builder plan” I am ordering within 7 days so include my free bonus “Stay Young Longer” which I can keep even if I should return the “The six week muscle builder plan” under your 30 day guarantee. On this basis please find enclosed my payment of £67.00.

First Name......................................... Surname ...........................................

Address ............................................. ........................................................... ...................... Post Code ..................

Please find enclosed my cheque.

Save time, order now, pick up the phone and call our hotline order number on:

0123 456 78910

 

Have your credit / Debit card ready.

I wish to pay by credit / debit card Please charge my credit / debit card with the sum of ____

Visa Mastercard Debit card
Card number
Name on card ............................................... Expires on................. Valid from .................. Solo / Switch issue number .......................... Signature .................... Date ........................

So there you have all that’s necessary for an order form, how you actually lay it out is up to you, as you can see you could use coloured shading or text for some parts, so lets look at colours next.

The psychology of colours.

 

Now believe it or not colours, according to the experts, can have a profound affect on us, either on a negative or positive basis.

 

So for the reason I have just given, I have listed below the most popular colours and the affect they are meant to have on us.

Colours are mostly used in the presentation of online sales letters, this can add impact and or interest to the sales letter, as well as having a positive affect on the reader, providing the right colours are used of course.

You can also, by using the colour chart below, choose which colour would be most suited for your headline text etc.

Yellow.
Is considered a warm cheery colour, it is also the most visible colour and is considered one of the most attention getting, however, it can be fatiguing especially on computer monitors.
So to get attention, use yellow but sparingly.

Purple.
Is a colour that signifies royalty and wealth, and is said to represent wisdom and the exotic.
You could use purple in your sales letter promoting quality high price products.

Brown.
Is a natural earthy colour, it gives a sense of strength and reliability, it can give a feeling of comfort, security and warmth, it can also be seen as sophisticated.
Do you think this would be a good colour for our example fitness product?

Orange.
Is an energetic colour, it induces feelings of excitement, enthusiasm and warmth, its also a very strong attention grabber.
A good colour to use throughout your sales letter for any product.

Pink.
Is associated with love and romance, it has a calming affect. Could be good for cosmetics, ladies fitness plans etc.

Green.
Is the colour of nature, it has a calming effect and gives a sense of tranquillity, it is also a symbol of health and fertility.
Good for products on herbal remedies, Healthy eating etc.

Blue.
Is a productive colour, and a popular colour for men but is not an appetizing colour as far as food is concerned.
Could be used for manly products, but not for herbal remedies, Healthy eating etc.

Red.
Evokes strong emotions of love, comfort and warmth, it can create feelings of urgency, power and excitement.
A good colour for headlines and sub headers throughout your copy.

Black.
There’s not much one can say about black, except that it should always be the colour of your copy on a white or off-white background.

So there you have it, now as I have already said, colours can add interest to your sales letter, and there’s nothing bad about adding interest is there, so use colours but don’t overdo it, try and aim for a nice balanced layout.

Well that brings us to the end of the sales letter part of this course, next we will look at the subject of classified adverts.

 

But before we go, a little exercise for you, imagine that you want to put your headline for our example fitness product inside a coloured box.

 

Question 1.

 

What colour would you use for the box (background colour)?

 

Question 2.

 

What colour would you use for the headline text colour?

Now have a think about this, it’s an interesting little exercise, study the colour chart, think about the product and who it’s aimed at, and see what colours you think are best suited.

I have given my chosen colours on the next page, NO PEEKING, until you have chosen yours.

 

The colours that I think would go well for our example product are: Background colour BROWN. Text colour YELLOW. Did you agree?