CW Forum regulars who've gone AWOL...

30 replies
There's some folks whose posts I miss reading (as well as just having fun)...

Collette - Wherefore art thou? Why hast thee forsaken us for the love of dogs? I'll get a note from my wife allowing me to marry you if you'll come back...

Raybould - Van Halen tix go on sale 1.10.12, surely we can hope for you to at least poke of your head in here for THAT...

Paul Hancox - I love Paul's stuff and he's such a cool guy. I won't even joke around. WHERE ARE YOU, PAUL?!

Who else is missing in action, gang?

Maybe we can try and turn over a momentary leaf of positivity for a change and get some of that cool mojo back that made this place a cool hang once upon a time...

It's been a real downer in this section for a while now.

That sucks. And it doesn't have to suck.

Happy New Year,

Brian
#awol #forum #regulars #whove
  • Profile picture of the author The Copy Warriors
    I haven't seen alex cohen in weeks.
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    • Profile picture of the author BrianMcLeod
      Originally Posted by Andy Button View Post

      I haven't seen alex cohen in weeks.
      I noticed a somewhat cryptic message on a recent post about it being Alex's last in the CW section.

      I guess he wasn't kidding. Bummer.

      Alex (and Joe Ditzel) helped me out big time when I was in a jam a few months back and needed help converting a GoToWebinar recording.

      Brian
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      • Profile picture of the author Mark Andrews
        Banned
        Nothing like it used to be here a couple or more years ago. A shame.

        It's basically turned into a critique forum what with so many newbies all spouting out the same, dare I say it, rubbish every day.

        Collette she was fantastic, I used to love reading her posts. Every single one was an eye opener. She was in a class of her own.

        Paul Hancox too, his posts were brilliant.

        Even Vin Montello has been absent for ages now, again a great shame.


        Mark Andrews
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        • Profile picture of the author DianaHeuser
          Originally Posted by Mark Andrews View Post

          It's basically turned into a critique forum what with so many newbies all spouting out the same, dare I say it, rubbish every day.Mark Andrews
          Mark,

          I thought one of the functions of the Warrior Forum was to help newbies? We all have to start somewhere, even if it is rubbish in the beginning.

          Learning happens by making mistakes and having people who know more than us show us the error of our ways. Great copywriters are not threatened by others.

          Some of you are really decent about it (like you Mark) but overall it just seems to be a 'contest of egos' (be sure to look up the synonym for that) as to who can pulverise the stupid newbie with as much blood loss as possible.

          A newbie today is your potential customer tomorrow. It all depends on whether you treated them with respect or malice.

          Mark, you are NOT included in this rant. You are one of the decent one's in this sub-forum.

          A seriously pissed off Di
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          • Originally Posted by DianaHeuser View Post

            overall it just seems to be a 'contest of egos' (be sure to look up the synonym for that) as to who can pulverise the stupid newbie with as much blood loss as possible.

            A seriously pissed off Di
            Actually, blistering critiques have been part of the copywriting process for decades. For example, in Gary Bencivenga's interview with Carlton Makepeace he details the heavy gauntlet they put writers through.

            The whole idea is that it is better to get riddled with abuse now than to put your sub-par copy, product, squeeze page, or WSO out there and it dies a slow, quiet death.
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  • Profile picture of the author RHert
    I've missed a few of these people too. Hopefully we'll see them again soon, and if it isn't like it was a few years ago why don't we do something about it?
    It only takes a handful of people to make changes.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tinkerbell
    Vin's been around lately ... I saw him pop into a thread a few weeks ago.
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  • Profile picture of the author arfasaira
    I spoke to Paul a few weeks back - he is doing great and busy with his own projects at the moment. Always worrying when people just drop off the forum for no apparent reason...
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  • Profile picture of the author Bruce Wedding
    I spoke to Collette by phone a few weeks ago. She's pretty much in lurk mode here and she's very busy.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ken Strong
    Originally Posted by BrianMcLeod View Post

    Raybould - Van Halen tix go on sale 1.10.12, surely we can hope for you to at least poke of your head in here for THAT...
    Depends on who the singer is this time...
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    • Profile picture of the author BrianMcLeod
      Originally Posted by Ken Strong View Post

      Depends on who the singer is this time...
      It's David Lee Roth...

      New studio album on the way and a tour this year.

      They've been rehearsing for the tour in the Roxy in LA.

      Wolfgang Van Halen on bass again (forevermore?)

      B <- Completely derailing his own thread, yet again...
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  • Profile picture of the author BrianMcLeod
    Is it true?

    Has a marching army of know-nothing knuckleheads invaded our tree fort?

    Lord knows I understand how you feel.

    Sometimes the posts here make you want to reach through the computer and strangle somebody.

    They confuse copywriting and content writing.

    They post their own info-junkie buying criterion in a thread seeking expert advice.

    They argue with people they'd pay THOUSANDS to for the same thing if they had a clue.

    On a personal level, my degree of involvement lately has devolved to grunts of "how's that working for you?", "test it..." and "you're a bright guy, I'm sure you can figure it out..."

    WTF. That's pretty effin' pointless, innit?

    This is OUR hang. This is where the SMART PEOPLE are supposed to live.

    If you listen close, you can still hear echoes of Vin yelling:

    "How 'bout we talk less about what we THINK and more about what we KNOW?"

    Even the dumb-asses were smart enough then to see the wisdom in that...

    And this isn't about egos, either.

    Show me a copywriter without an ego and I'll show you a starving copywriter.

    We all LOVE TO WIN. It's what we do.

    So - if we'd like to wrench sanity back out of the gaping maw of STOOPID...

    Here's what I'd suggest.

    1) Ignore the trolls. You know who they are and so do they. They LIVE for attention. Deny them that pleasure. It's your most VICIOUS weapon. BLUDGEON them with silence.

    2) Stop taking everything so damned personal. People act like idiots on the internet. Is this news to you? Seriously?

    3) CALL BULL**** when you see it. You can do that without being a a-hole about it - even if the other side flips out and self-immolates. Someone will probably call bull**** on me somewhere in this post. It's USEFUL.

    4) KNOW what you're talking about before you decide to opine. There's a wealth of experience and expertise that's getting lost in the noise.

    5) If you ask for a critique here, EXPECT CRITICISM. Certain mods find it less than useful when the purpose of your thread appears to be insincere (read LOTS into that...)

    <off soapbox>

    Sorry if I appear too Kumbaya and not enough Put That Coffee Down.

    Brian
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    • Profile picture of the author Bill Jeffels
      Brian. All I can say is thank-you for bringing this up.


      Take care,


      Bill


      PS I still have that Van Halen 2007 reunion "Toronto" Tour t shirt for ya.



      .
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    • Profile picture of the author Jennie Heckel
      Brian,

      Awesome!

      This is OUR hang. This is where the SMART PEOPLE are supposed to live.

      If you listen close, you can still hear echoes of Vin yelling:

      "How 'bout we talk less about what we THINK and more about what we KNOW?"

      Even the dumb-asses were smart enough then to see the wisdom in that...

      And this isn't about egos, either.

      Show me a copywriter without an ego and I'll show you a starving copywriter.

      We all LOVE TO WIN. It's what we do.

      So - if we'd like to wrench sanity back out of the gaping maw of STOOPID...

      ******** TOTALLY AGREE*********

      Let's see what we can do to create some NEW and Informative Theads!
      One that create live and active discussions so we ALL learn a thing or to!
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  • Profile picture of the author DianaHeuser
    Joe and Brian,

    I have no problem with the critique aspect from experts like yourselves. You guys are good, which is why people come here for your opinion.

    The problem I have is the atitude that the 'oldies' in the copywriting forum are God's gift to mankind and all newbies are toilet paper.

    Ever ventured into the "offline" or 'website' section of the forum? Take a look at how the 'experts' there treat the newbies who are just as irritating to them as to you.

    The difference is that those experts are generally classy in their response. There's a lot to be learnt from them!

    In this forum, just about every thread de-generates into "Mine's bigger than yours!'. No wonder people don't want to hang around here.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Durham
      Originally Posted by DianaHeuser View Post

      Joe and Brian,

      I have no problem with the critique aspect from experts like yourselves. You guys are good, which why people come here for your opinion.

      The problem I have is the attitude that the 'oldies' in the copywriting forum are God's gift to mankind and all newbies are toilet paper.

      Ever ventured into the "offline" or 'website' section of the forum? Take a look at how the 'experts' there treat the newbies who are just as irritating to them as to you.

      The difference is that those experts are generally classy in their response. There's a lot to be learnt from them!

      In this forum, just about every thread de-generates into "Mine's bigger than yours!'. No wonder people don't want to hang around here.
      The stakes are higher here Di, because offline experts are selling $27.00 wso's, and have other business interests outside of WSO's....but CW's are selling $1600.00 services, and most of them depend entirely on the forum, while the rest of the advertising world outside of WF doesnt even know who the hell they are.

      They are more territorial.


      Some forget that bashing isnt good business.

      If I were to judge some by their posts here... I wouldnt hire hire them for ten cents. Its all negative and doesnt sell me on anything except that they are aholes who are only here to prospect for "suckers".

      The truth is that the world is a big place... and having some successful wso's doesnt make you an advertising expert, it just means you know the WF market ... Edit: but not necessarily even that- WSO's can be hit and miss even for the "WF CW EXPERTS" No one hits 100% or can guarantee a conversion percentage. When they can "call their shots", then I will call them an expert.

      For instance, I can call my shots on cold calling within a few percentage points, and I can project my results based on a given repeated action.... That makes me an expert, its not a "grab bag" result.

      All the heavy criticism is why this area sucks and nobody wants to hang out here....

      Lastly, why would I buy copy writing services from people who have forgotten how to sell "themselves".

      Its about uplifting energy... these crummy "everyone else is an idiot" posts, even in the wso copy around here would not fly very far past this forum...

      Benefits are the key, and there is no benefit in dealing with people who dont know how to uplift your spirit.

      I would not buy from a person who thinks everyone else is an idiot... You want true copy writing knowledge, go to Doctor Mani.... He actually makes visitors and newbies feel cared for, and they buy that like hot cakes, and I buy "him" because of it. He teaches, uplifts, and encourages instead of criticizing.

      To quote Paul Myers "There is one tone that NOBODY likes to hear, and thats the tone of being talked down to...".

      Maybe when they experts remember that then this area will be worthwhile, but no one wants to come get abused.

      Their loss. I personally wont buy their services because they dont even know how to sell ME on Them, how are they going to sell my customers?

      I want to feel good when I come to a wso page, not like everyone but the copy writer is a moron.

      Thanks but no thanks.

      Ps. Good copy is important, and I know that for a fact because sometimes mine is better than at other times, and the difference is clear.... however "pre-selling" and what you do before you send a person to your page is TEN TIMES more important.

      Pay attention to that and you can hardly go wrong.

      Ps. If this post is critical I apologize... This is one time I dont mind anyone saying the pot is calling the kettle black.

      You sell more copy writing services when your prospects feel good. Im not selling them so I hope this hits some experts in the heart and makes them quit driving their market away.

      I do understand ego, and I sometimes have to be reminded to keep mine in check....so knowing how that helps me, this is my reminder to others.
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    • Profile picture of the author Jennie Heckel
      Diana,

      Wow! You gave me my smile for the day! Now I know why I have not bothered to even read this forum for over a year! But I got a friend request from this Forum today and figured, "What the heck... see if anything has changed..." Guess it really hasn't not much! I totally agree with you!

      Now if I can complain I should make an effort to change things -- right? Otherwise dont complain... OK, so I made a new resolution. I will make a new thread each week (no matter my copywriting load...) to give back.

      REASON why is after all this time, I do feel I can contribute. This last year I learned an incredible amount about all the ins and outs of copy that converts well, that I really should share. I make my living writing copy like so many here. Let's see if we can give some CPR to this forum.

      Again, Diana I sure loved the way you hit the nail on the head with this post.
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    • Profile picture of the author MikeHumphreys
      Originally Posted by DianaHeuser View Post

      Joe and Brian,

      I have no problem with the critique aspect from experts like yourselves. You guys are good, which is why people come here for your opinion.

      The problem I have is the atitude that the 'oldies' in the copywriting forum are God's gift to mankind and all newbies are toilet paper.

      Ever ventured into the "offline" or 'website' section of the forum? Take a look at how the 'experts' there treat the newbies who are just as irritating to them as to you.

      The difference is that those experts are generally classy in their response. There's a lot to be learnt from them!

      In this forum, just about every thread de-generates into "Mine's bigger than yours!'. No wonder people don't want to hang around here.
      Diana,

      It's the nature of being a professional copywriter.

      Every project we do, we're judged by the results we deliver. Deliver hits and you're in demand. Deliver too many duds and you're sitting in the dark with no clients and even less money in your pocket.

      The advice we give clients has to be dead-on right because many times, they're banking a lot of money on the advice being right.

      So copywriting is not a "fake until you make it" profession. There's too much riding on the copywriter's skills and expertise.

      Knowing it's not a "fake until you make it", experienced copywriters can spot someone pretending to be an expert a mile away... and they don't want to be associated with it in anyway. So they're quick to call someone's bluff when they see it.

      The other thing is, most of the successful copywriters I've ever met honed their skills early on through trial by fire. Either they had a mentor holding their feet to the fire or they were a small business owner doing "Gun To The Head" marketing (Gary Halbert's term, not mine) every week.

      I was one of the latter and had plenty of times where I sat down to write an ad that HAD to convert well or else I might have trouble covering all of the bills that month.

      In either case, it's a pressure cooker situation which makes you tough-skinned, calm under fire, and highly resistant to dealing with marketing half-truths or outright lies. Because marketing half-truths or outright lies could cause a business using that info to lose a ton of money... perhaps hurt the business badly enough that it never recovers.

      As far as newer copywriters go... they haven't proven themselves to the established copywriters that they have legit chops. Once they do, then they're welcomed with open arms to the profession. Sorry to say it but it's true. And it's true in any other industry too... that's why NFL rookies get hazed by the veteran players every year in mini-camp.

      As far as copywriters egos... that's partly copywriters fault... and partly clients. You see, clients don't want to hire a copywriter who "thinks, well gosh... maybe just maybe... I can write something for you that will make you some money."

      No way.

      They want a confident (yes, even cocky sometimes) copywriter who KNOWS there's a real good chance they can write something that converts. And if it doesn't convert, then the same confident copywriter has to be prepared to explain what went wrong and come up with a plan on how to fix it FAST.

      So if clients want copywriters who can deliver as close to a sure winner as possible, then the trade-off can be dealing with that copywriter's ego.

      Hope that helps,

      Mike
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      • Profile picture of the author Jennie Heckel
        Originally Posted by MikeHumphreys View Post

        As far as copywriters egos... that's partly copywriters fault... and partly clients. You see, clients don't want to hire a copywriter who "thinks, well gosh... maybe just maybe... I can write something for you that will make you some money."

        No way.

        They want a confident (yes, even cocky sometimes) copywriter who KNOWS there's a real good chance they can write something that converts. And if it doesn't convert, then the same confident copywriter has to be prepared to explain what went wrong and come up with a plan on how to fix it FAST.

        So if clients want copywriters who can deliver as close to a sure winner as possible, then the trade-off can be dealing with that copywriter's ego.

        Hope that helps,

        Mike
        Just gotta say....

        I LOVED THIS!

        Sure made me smile this morning.... can I use this? I have a client right now that needs to SEE this!

        I loved the "cocky" part....

        (no bad pun intended...)

        But it's totally true... clients NEED a copywriter that is confident and sometimes very full of themselves..."

        Because most clients are really in serious need of your "get 'er done!" attitude.

        Jennie
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  • Profile picture of the author BrianMcLeod
    Awesome.

    Thanks, John for dignifying our dirty little CW section with some omniscient scolding compliments of that totally not Unicorn Dream world of offline marketing.

    Yes that same thing some of us here called a "Web Development Company" back in 1997.

    I digress.

    Appreciate you depositing such a nice shiny turd on a thread I was hoping might be an opportunity to bring a little positive energy into the joint.

    Instead, you blow into town to pick a fight. Irony?

    No. Wholly predictable.

    What would Dr. Mani do?

    Not that.

    Thanks.

    Brian
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    • Profile picture of the author Ross Bowring
      This is self-indulgent, but stick with me...

      Four years ago I was watching the results of the Iowa caucuses in a "family room" in the biggest children's hospital in Philadelphia. Parents who hadn't slept in days we're curled up on recliners beside me. At any moment, any blip of downtime away from the bedside could be rattled by an ear-piercing alarm. This meant either a heart had stopped beating, or a breathing apparatus wasn't working. Every time it went off your heart dropped. Could it be your baby? And could you live with the consequences?

      This was going down about 6 months after I’d just discovered direct-response copywriting and Michel Fortin’s discussion board. I was doing the right things… reading all the books and then applying it in writing. I was dissecting letters from the greats and writing them out longhand. I figured small incremental improvements would add up to a career and I was right.

      Copywriting became my mental sanctuary. A place to go when I couldn’t fester anymore on unanswered questions.

      It’s why, for twenty-eight long days… and then another two surgical stays after that… if you’d rode the elevator to the sixth floor, then taken a quick left then a right… for roughly one hour of each 16-hour day, you’d have found me sat at a public computer, on a copywriting forum, lurking and learning.

      A forum like this can mean the world to someone.

      One of the reasons I work with Vin Montello is because the interaction between us makes the finished product that much better. Iron sharpening iron. This forum can be iron for everyone. I need to do my part and find time to walk the walk. Skipping my sentence-long posts for more substance. Call it my New Year’s resolution and this the first effort.

      Thanks for indulging me… and you should know that a couple nights ago, I got to watch the Iowa caucuses as a live-wire four-year old, who loves princesses and talking dogs and ballet and iCarly and her even littler brother, curled up sleeping in the bedroom down the hall.

      --- Ross
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  • Profile picture of the author John Durham
    You are welcome Brian.

    For the record your creative use of language in the last two posts was like trying to decipher the Davinci code, I dont see how leaving people scratching their heads helps, by the time I figure out what you are trying to say in this thread Im worn out...

    I think if I was looking for an answer I would try to find a post I didnt have to decode. it shows you take more than only yourself seriously. People want to be helped, not impressed by poetic use of words like the "t" word....which paints a pretty disgusting picture BTW....

    People have to be able to understand you...

    The sad part is that I wasnt even referring to you... but come to think of it....I just gave up completely on your answer to Dianna...it was just too hard to read. And yes, the offline world is less vague, and I remember "web development company", in fact my team sold over 19,000 websites to small business owners all over America in 1999....Didnt just fall off the turnip truck yesterday.

    No offense.

    Ps. I know Dr Mani has a cooler style of answering than I do, thats okay. Wasnt picking a fight.
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  • Profile picture of the author John Durham
    Originally Posted by Ken_Caudill View Post

    Yes. Yes. Yes.

    I want me one of them writers who don't use no big words to write me a copy.

    Email me with your price and monosyllabic reply.

    How about **** you?

    Succinct, ain't it?
    Touche' Ken

    Peace.
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  • Profile picture of the author Scott Murdaugh
    John,

    Why is your entire post about copywriters selling themselves in this forum? (I get that I have a sig link).

    I don't post here for clients. I've made some incredible contacts, I owe this place more than I could place a dollar amount on...

    ...But the serious guys who do post here are doing it for the discussion, the community, the shared knowledge, not to drum up biz.

    If you're a copywriter, and you're primarily prospecting for clients in this forum, you need to go back to marketing-101. This is a great place, but it's not necessarily the best place to hunt down PWM's looking for copywriters.

    IMHBAO, people who post-whore here for money, and not the value of the community, is exactly what's wrong with this entire site - The marketing circle jerk gets old fast. The players in real markets with real money don't have time to filter through the B.S. self promoting posts to find the good ones.

    (And that's not a personal shot at you btw, my only qualm is the insinuation that all discussion here is based on copywriters, who know no other way to make money, than posting here).

    To answer the AWOL question...

    1-2 years ago this forum was gold. I'm not going to list names, because I know I'd leave too many great ones out.

    Most of my biz talk today happens on Skype, Facebook contacts, phone convo's and other "scary" places like real life.

    The conversations here aren't interesting to me for the most part anymore. A lot of the same old questions that have already been covered to death - a lot of e-penis measuring (I charge $2k, look at my $97 copy WSO) - a lot of "can I have something for nothing and place zero value on your time and expertise" - a lot of ignorant, ill-informed "advice" and no real stimulating conversation.

    That being said, I've been busy. I try to avoid the computer when working at all costs to maintain sanity. But this place means a lot to me.

    I'll make it a goal to contribute more often around here when I can. The talent, incredible people and treasure-trove of knowledge here should never be taken for granted.

    I'm all about taking some initiative and re-igniting the spark that makes the CW forum an awesome community.

    People who are fascinated by copywriting are a small niche. This forum has never been "big". But it, at least in the past, has always been one of the most valuable forums on the 'net for our small breed.

    I get the feeling we'll see it pick up again soon. New blood, old talent returning. It'll be a good 2012.

    I'll do what I can to help out.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mark Pescetti
    My initial response to Brian McLeod is I think it's admirable to want a more positive tone in the discussions here.

    For the most part, I agree.

    There are too many penis comparisons happening on the CW forum.

    "My response is BIGGER than yours!"

    I don't come here to get clients.

    I'm busy. (And out of the dozen or so people who have contacted me from the CW forum since I've joined, none of them were my ideal clients by any means... so I'm not "trolling" for any particular objective...)

    I come here to purge, test out ideas, get inspired, get stimulated and take that energy back to my work.

    This week especially, I suffered from immense creative constipation and I have a Friday deadline.

    After making a post here, I got that million dollar idea that tied the project I'm working on together... then rode the wave of inspiration for almost 6 hours!

    Project's done.

    I got the day off today to play some tennis before starting a new project tomorrow.

    So I'm grateful for this forum.

    That being said...

    ...Life's not all sunshine and roses, so I don't believe that always challenging myself to find the most positive tone in my responses is absolutely necessary.

    I do however strive to make my posts count and be who I am when I'm compelled to write anything in response to what I see here.

    I also believe that people who ask for critique should be WAY more conscientious when they post their copy.

    It's so incredibly obvious that the vast majority of people who post here are MOSTLY too cheap to pay someone who can really HELP them.

    I'm not so sure it actually accomplishes anything for us to provide critiques without knowing all the information we'd normally require from clients... which makes the whole point of posting copy here largely a waste of time for EVERYONE!

    Oh, and what's the only constant in the universe?

    Change.

    People move on.

    People always idealize certain eras in their lives...

    ...I guess it's the same with the CW forum.

    I'd love it if the '93 Chicago Bulls were still around, but I get it, nothing lasts forever.

    And you either embrace change or resist it.

    The point being...

    ...Maybe it's you (all of you) who've changed?

    Maybe you need something else out of this forum you're not getting anymore?

    And if so, be the change!

    Create direction!

    And while this thread may not have accomplished what you wanted Brian, it did reveal some interesting awareness' about how people look at the CW forum.

    Mark
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  • Profile picture of the author John Durham
    I rescind my generalizations. I was incorrect. There are a couple of bad apples, but I shouldn't have generalized. My apologies to the good apples, and there are many. Thanks Scott.
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    • Profile picture of the author Doceye
      Ross ...

      Simply stunning writing. And most assuredly because you cared deeply about the subject.

      Glad your little princess is here with you four years later. And healthy.

      The reflection, sir, was priceless.

      Doc
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    • Profile picture of the author Doceye
      Takes a big man (or woman) to retract a strong statement upon reflection.

      You are to be commended, John.

      To make this forum rock again, people, this is the direction we head.

      Doc
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