My thoughts on writing ad copy

11 replies
Time has definitely proven that words have a huge, sometimes life changing effect on people. But I do have a bone or two to pick with some ad copy philosophy. First let me point out a regurgitated message that some marketers still to this day fail to see and that is people don't fall for the same sales message that they did 30 or 20 or even 10 years ago. Now of course some still do but why is that? Simple they don't want to think or educate themselves, so what about the vast majority of ones that actually do their own research; they realize we do have this thing called the internet. Granted there is a lot of B.S. online but does that mean everything is hype, of course not. So the main question is who is your audience and how is a certain product sold to different demographics. Let's say you have a health product for instance that is genuinely helpful for people and you decide to make grandiose claims about the product, now how is that going to impact your buyer? First thing to keep in mind is that individuals who are health conscience are generally thinking and aware, so would saying things like "reverse the effects of aging" or "this cures cancer" or "miracle product" going to convince these type of people, well if you sell these products you tell me. On the other hand you have those who want a quick fix and will absolutely go for these types of statements. If the old methods still worked for the masses then we would not see the rise in information but the problem then becomes that there is too much info, information overload and it can seem daunting to decipher what's legit and what's hype. How do we deal with this? Again its simple, we have a conversation, now I know you're going to ask "how do you have a conversation with someone through written words"

Greatest example of all time, get ready for it and don't be shocked THE BIBLE. Think about it, whether you're religious or not if you have any knowledge of the bible or somewhat believe in the bible you would know that it's what some people feel is God's way of communicating with us, how so. You wake up one day or getting ready for bed and you say a prayer, you ask for guidance, understanding, or any question that you desire an answer to, does God appear to you and give you the answer, well some people would claim this but most would acknowledge that he doesn't, so how does he communicate then? You don't necessarily have to believe what's in there that's hardly the point, the bible doesn't have a checklist of subjects that are cataloged and organized where you can just say ok there is the answer but what it does do is relate specific examples that you can relate to and gets you to think and meditate on your own because we do have a brain of our own, now religion a lot of times gets in the way of us thinking on our own but that's another subject for another time but the main point is people don't want to be sold isn't this obvious, they want a variety of information from various sources so they can weigh the pro's and con's. Example: let's say I'm promoting a really beneficial vitamin; this is how you would have a conversation in your content. "Will taking this vitamin get you back to perfect health? , will not taking this vitamin get you back to perfect health? I agree with you, NO neither will get you back to perfect health, but at times you ask yourself do I need a little supplication for what I miss out on in my daily diet? You personally might need some supplication or you might be someone that has a diet and routine that works for you but it might not work for other individuals, everyone's different you know that already it's just common sense. The most important thing is that if you do decide to add this to your daily supplement, the only guarantee I can give you is it won't make your nutrition worse but it does have a great chance of adding more balance and nutrition that you feel you may be lacking so just make sure you don't substitute your healthy diet you follow already with only this vitamin because you need both in order to have maximum effect, I think most people reading this would agree that's pretty reasonable. So do your own research on the benefits and check our references on this product and if you decide its worth a shot, do it the right way and you will see the difference sooner than later" Before I point out the effects of the content here I must first address something I didn't do in this ad copy, I didn't ask for the sale and I didn't have a call to action, this is the most absurd thing you can do in sales because people buy when they are ready to buy not when you want them to buy, if you're like me nobody can convince me of anything I have to convince myself first so I need the information and not someone's opinion we will make our own opinion. So let's look at a few key points in this content, first don't insult someone's intelligence, second don't tell them that what they are doing is wrong, and third give them credit for what they are already doing, your job is to make their situation better and not necessarily always change it. Now in some cases decision makers will need to make a complete change but they will never do it overnight they will almost always look for little tweaks first before a complete overhaul because resistance to change is human nature, consult don't sell.

Probably the most polarizing change in sales methods is definitely in the car industry, yeah no kidding right. What has this industry done specifically? Well I'll tell ya, they have taken the power away from the salesman and given it directly to the buyer, how so? Information duh, anyone of us can look up the dealers cost for a vehicle online or using Car fax to see if a car is salvaged any number of facts are at our disposal now and this drives the sales staff insane. So what should a sales person do about it, the answer should be obvious but it isn't always to some and that is to be at least as informed as the buyer if not more informed I mean you work there you shouldn't have any problem getting all the facts about your product but people can be lazy and just want a quick sale I get it but you won't have long term success, believe me I know I sold cars before.

Not everyone can be good at everything, there is such a thing as talent, now I know very little about generating traffic or writing code so on and so forth but I do know modern human psychology and not from any formal education but from experience with people. I know how I want to be treated when making a buying decision and actually it's what most people want as well.
#copy #thoughts #writing
  • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
    Originally Posted by Nick Neely View Post

    Time has definitely proven that words have a huge, sometimes life changing effect on people. But I do have a bone or two to pick with some ad copy philosophy. First let me point out a regurgitated message that some marketers still to this day fail to see and that is people don't fall for the same sales message that they did 30 or 20 or even 10 years ago. Now of course some still do but why is that? Simple they don't want to think or educate themselves, so what about the vast majority of ones that actually do their own research; they realize we do have this thing called the internet. Granted there is a lot of B.S. online but does that mean everything is hype, of course not. So the main question is who is your audience and how is a certain product sold to different demographics. Let's say you have a health product for instance that is genuinely helpful for people and you decide to make grandiose claims about the product, now how is that going to impact your buyer? First thing to keep in mind is that individuals who are health conscience are generally thinking and aware, so would saying things like "reverse the effects of aging" or "this cures cancer" or "miracle product" going to convince these type of people, well if you sell these products you tell me. On the other hand you have those who want a quick fix and will absolutely go for these types of statements. If the old methods still worked for the masses then we would not see the rise in information but the problem then becomes that there is too much info, information overload and it can seem daunting to decipher what's legit and what's hype. How do we deal with this? Again its simple, we have a conversation, now I know you're going to ask "how do you have a conversation with someone through written words"

    Greatest example of all time, get ready for it and don't be shocked THE BIBLE. Think about it, whether you're religious or not if you have any knowledge of the bible or somewhat believe in the bible you would know that it's what some people feel is God's way of communicating with us, how so. You wake up one day or getting ready for bed and you say a prayer, you ask for guidance, understanding, or any question that you desire an answer to, does God appear to you and give you the answer, well some people would claim this but most would acknowledge that he doesn't, so how does he communicate then? You don't necessarily have to believe what's in there that's hardly the point, the bible doesn't have a checklist of subjects that are cataloged and organized where you can just say ok there is the answer but what it does do is relate specific examples that you can relate to and gets you to think and meditate on your own because we do have a brain of our own, now religion a lot of times gets in the way of us thinking on our own but that's another subject for another time but the main point is people don't want to be sold isn't this obvious, they want a variety of information from various sources so they can weigh the pro's and con's. Example: let's say I'm promoting a really beneficial vitamin; this is how you would have a conversation in your content. "Will taking this vitamin get you back to perfect health? , will not taking this vitamin get you back to perfect health? I agree with you, NO neither will get you back to perfect health, but at times you ask yourself do I need a little supplication for what I miss out on in my daily diet? You personally might need some supplication or you might be someone that has a diet and routine that works for you but it might not work for other individuals, everyone's different you know that already it's just common sense. The most important thing is that if you do decide to add this to your daily supplement, the only guarantee I can give you is it won't make your nutrition worse but it does have a great chance of adding more balance and nutrition that you feel you may be lacking so just make sure you don't substitute your healthy diet you follow already with only this vitamin because you need both in order to have maximum effect, I think most people reading this would agree that's pretty reasonable. So do your own research on the benefits and check our references on this product and if you decide its worth a shot, do it the right way and you will see the difference sooner than later" Before I point out the effects of the content here I must first address something I didn't do in this ad copy, I didn't ask for the sale and I didn't have a call to action, this is the most absurd thing you can do in sales because people buy when they are ready to buy not when you want them to buy, if you're like me nobody can convince me of anything I have to convince myself first so I need the information and not someone's opinion we will make our own opinion. So let's look at a few key points in this content, first don't insult someone's intelligence, second don't tell them that what they are doing is wrong, and third give them credit for what they are already doing, your job is to make their situation better and not necessarily always change it. Now in some cases decision makers will need to make a complete change but they will never do it overnight they will almost always look for little tweaks first before a complete overhaul because resistance to change is human nature, consult don't sell.

    Probably the most polarizing change in sales methods is definitely in the car industry, yeah no kidding right. What has this industry done specifically? Well I'll tell ya, they have taken the power away from the salesman and given it directly to the buyer, how so? Information duh, anyone of us can look up the dealers cost for a vehicle online or using Car fax to see if a car is salvaged any number of facts are at our disposal now and this drives the sales staff insane. So what should a sales person do about it, the answer should be obvious but it isn't always to some and that is to be at least as informed as the buyer if not more informed I mean you work there you shouldn't have any problem getting all the facts about your product but people can be lazy and just want a quick sale I get it but you won't have long term success, believe me I know I sold cars before.

    Not everyone can be good at everything, there is such a thing as talent, now I know very little about generating traffic or writing code so on and so forth but I do know modern human psychology and not from any formal education but from experience with people. I know how I want to be treated when making a buying decision and actually it's what most people want as well.
    Most copywriters don't try to make anyone "fall" for anything, especially the good ones. Just MY opinion, but maybe bone up on your psychology AND your copywriting skills.

    GordonJ

    PS. You don't get the psychology of readability either. Very difficult post to read, let alone understand.
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    • Originally Posted by GordonJ View Post

      Most copywriters don't try to make anyone "fall" for anything, especially the good ones. Just MY opinion, but maybe bone up on your psychology AND your copywriting skills.

      GordonJ

      PS. You don't get the psychology of readability either. Very difficult post to read, let alone understand.
      Perhaps the deal is figurin' an encouragement to rise up into clouds fulla nebulous dreams -- an' renderin' 'em suddenly clarified as a Y/N offer favors whatchya figure the dreamerpeeps actually wanna.

      Also,gonna pass the crowna Difficult Understandibility on, principally cos it was messin' with ma hayer.
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  • Profile picture of the author SARubin
    I don't want to pick this entire post apart because it would take too long. And besides, as your title states, this is "your thoughts" on writing ad copy. And I suppose everyone's entitled to their own thoughts.

    That said... It was a bit difficult to comprehend what you're trying to say.

    For starters, it's hard to even read a HUGE block of text (especially on the web). So perhaps next time a little formatting would help?


    Also, I'm not entirely sure what point you're even trying to make here. Are you saying that ad copy should not try to sell? And should not emphasize benefits to the reader?


    And where you said
    Originally Posted by Nick Neely View Post

    Before I point out the effects of the content here I must first address something I didn't do in this ad copy, I didn't ask for the sale and I didn't have a call to action."
    Are you saying there should NOT be a call to action in sales copy?

    If so... That doesn't make any sense. How will people know what to do next? And if you truly believe your product, or service can help your audience, and you don't explain how they should proceed to do business with you (call to action), then you're doing them a great disservice by NOT letting them improve their lives through the benefit of your offer. (That's pretty selfish of you)


    Like I said, I'm not going to dissect what you wrote here, but I do have one final question...

    What exactly do you mean by " modern human psychology" as it pertains to sales copy?

    And I don't mean just the facility of modern research technology. Because those are just methods and tools... not psychology.


    Perhaps you could clarify what you're trying to say with this post?

    Or was it just a rant? (which is OK too)
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    • Profile picture of the author Nick Neely
      Yes of course a little ranting. Im wondering why no one asks the obvious questions like when is the last time you purchased something right away after reading a sales letter? And if you have to ask someone to buy doesn't that indicate you haven't sold them yet, they should be asking to buy if you've done your job or am I wrong. Im not claiming to be an expert by the way
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      • Profile picture of the author DABK
        Obvious?

        Why does it have right away after reading a sales letter? Why can't it be because you read the sales letter?

        Are you saying sales letters do not work?

        As to having to ask them to buy, no, it does not indicate you have not sold them yet. It indicates you want to make sure they act fast and they know what to do to buy from you.

        'Click here to buy' is a request to buy and you telling them what to do next to buy.

        Without calls to actions and reasons to act now, you could be selling someone on the idea of buying whatever you're selling and some other outfit that sells the same/similar thing gets the sale. There are many distractions in the world.

        Originally Posted by Nick Neely View Post

        Yes of course a little ranting. Im wondering why no one asks the obvious questions like when is the last time you purchased something right away after reading a sales letter? And if you have to ask someone to buy doesn't that indicate you haven't sold them yet, they should be asking to buy if you've done your job or am I wrong. Im not claiming to be an expert by the way
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  • Profile picture of the author angiecolee
    TL;DR.

    You really gotta learn to structure your thoughts in a way that's easy to scan and read.
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  • Profile picture of the author Marcus Wiesner
    Awesome! I have definitely been taking this into account with my current ad copy.

    I have been really really focusong on this because the fact is, I already know how to sell and when I cam over to try to put that into writing, I got a lot of round-about formulas and stuff but when it all comes down to it, you are 100% right. My newest version of my sales letter has a lead very similar to what you are talking about here.

    And I think, a good example. Although of course, I am always improving. In fact, I am posting it for critique on the board.

    Thanks for the awesome post.
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  • Profile picture of the author RichardThessen
    This is a wonderful piece. I enjoyed every bit of it and yes, I do believe not everyone can be good at everything
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  • Profile picture of the author simon leach
    C'mon dude. You have an almost 700 word paragraph, in a post about writing copy...did that not strike you that it would bring your credibility in to question? That wouldn't even fly in a college thesis.
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    • Profile picture of the author Nick Neely
      Really you critiqued me with "c mon" dude. Must have just got back from the gym with your "bros". Learn how to speak like a grown up then I'll listen
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      • Profile picture of the author DABK
        It was 'c'mon" not 'c mon.'

        And, the point made is spot on.

        You not listening is your problem, as in, it is you who pays for you not taking in good advice.

        Have a good day.

        PS I don't care whether you listen to me, just being a good Samaritan.

        Originally Posted by Nick Neely View Post

        Really you critiqued me with "c mon" dude. Must have just got back from the gym with your "bros". Learn how to speak like a grown up then I'll listen
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