month or so, I took a wife-and-doctor-mandated
If you're like me, anytime you take a vacation
or any large amount of time off, your mind tends
And while I took some time off, I was able to reflect
about my online career that has spanned close to
12 years now.
I remember back in 2001, when the gym I was working
at suddenly closed down, I found myself without a
Almost by sheer coincidence, I had picked up a book
that same day... it was called "Multiple Streams of
After reading it, I figured "what the hell, what do
I have to lose"
That day in 2001, my internet marketing career
I quickly realized I didn't know much about
marketing, selling, or any of that.
I think when you learn ANY new skill, there are
several stages you go through.
when first starting out, it can be overwhelming
to the point where you're thinking "what the
f*ck am I doing?
Then, the more you read, study, and learn...
things start to naturally fall into place.
Things become familiar, you start practicing
what you're learning.
It's no longer just theory, but you get
feedback and results based on what you're
doing... so you know if you have to change
course and tweak things.
Lord knows when I started copywriting back
in 2001 or so, I had NO CLUE what i was doing.
Hence, the 1,000 exclamation points I'd use
in my copy... and so much red it looked like
someone bled on the screen...
Then there was the excessive bolding and
highlighting, a million adjectives (this product
is the most super, amazing, powerful life-changing
light bulb EVER!)
Anyways, I went from this "what the hell am
I doing" stage... to soon being able to put things
into practice and getting valuable feedback.
I would quickly learn or not if what I just wrote
would lead to a sale. If not, I'd try something
different... a new headline, subhead, etc.
And soon, the more I implemented my copy skills
into my business... that's when things really took
off for me.
I managed to go from that new, scary, unknown
stage... to one of more comfort and familiarity.
$5 a week turned to $50, and then $500 and then
$5,000 and then $10,000 a week.
I went from starting out not knowing a damn
thing, but I kept learning, practicing, implementing,
getting feedback, and changing course if needed.
And now, these days, almost 12 years later, it all
seems so simple.
Copywriting and selling in general just seems
easy to me.
Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not saying I know it
all, have done it all, or that i'm the world's greatest
or most successful writer.
FAR from it.
It's just that I've gotten to the point where I've
been able to take a step back, look at the big
picture of copy and sales, and now try to shortcut
that learning curve for my coaching students.
In other words, once you reach a certain stage in
ANY skill... things start to seem more "simple" to you.
They make more sense, you just "get it".
Even though it took me close to 12 years to
get to this stage, I now realize how many copywriters
(me included) make the art of selling much harder
than it needs to be.
Selling something to someone isn't hard, unless you
MAKE it hard.
I mean, all you have to do is to find out what people
want... and give THAT to them.
Instead of assuming it in your copy, ask if you can.
Yes, selling is THAT easy. You simply find out what
people want and help them get it!
Of course when you sell in person, you can ask someone.
But when you're selling in print, you can't really ask,
so you have to put yourself into your prospects shoes,
their mindset, and anticipate their needs.
This is the way you separate yourself from the
amateur copywriters who sell on hype.
Amateur copywriters write stuff that sounds
good to THEM... while pros write stuff that sounds
good to the prospect.
And it all boils down to making sure that what you're
offering is what people really want.
You do it by taking the trouble to find out what
This is why i used to survey my buyers all the time,
to find out what motivated them to buy.
Then, I simply took those answers and weaved
them into my copy.
Almost without fail, the conversion rate would
increase. Some letters went from 1% all the way
to 2% and higher, just by asking what people wanted.
Amateurs write copy by simply guessing what the
So if you want to really excel at copy, go out into
the marketplace and find out what people in that
niche want the most.
Then provide it.
Selling is easy when you do that, because you're
really just giving people what they want to buy.
It doesn't take hype, or aggressive sales pitches,
"selling the sizzle" or having the tenacity of a bulldog,
talking someone into saying "yes" or being a smooth
talker, or manipulation of any sorts.
Nope, selling is MUCH easier than that.
I think that's the biggest "ah ha" moment I've had
in the last few years.
I really figured out that I was making sales and copy
difficult, when it didn't have to be.
The most important part of selling and copywriting is
finding out what your market wants... and giving
it to them.
More specifically, what does that ONE person want...
the one person reading your sales letter... what does
THAT person want?
What's the biggest problem facing that one person
right now ?" Everything you say or write must focus
You must find their current motivation.
After all, you can't really motivate another person.
I learned that while working as a personal trainer.
People are internally motivated, self-motivated.
Either they want something or not.
So you can't motivate someone into buying.. they're
If they're not already internally motivated... they
probably won't buy... no matter how much you try
to sell them.
Most copywriters THINK that they're writing to try
to motivate their prospects. But you can't.
You can't motivate someone INTO buying what you
You simply have to channel their existing motivation
TO your product or service.
You're trying to stand in front of someone who is
already motivated, presenting your case as to why
your product or service is the best choice.
This person who is reading your letter is already
motivated. The want/need already exists;
Your job as a copywriter is to discover what it is
and appeal to it.
Don't try to create the demand or need, just
stand in front of that prospect's current motivation
and show them why YOUR product/service is the best
or most unique/ different, etc...
Your job is to show them that your product or
service will help them get what they want.
What is this person's biggest problem? Problems
usually mean someone is motivated to solve them.
So use that to your advantage.
Find out what the reader's motivation is and then
show that person how he or she can get it through
your product or service.
Only then will they buy.
So remember that the next time you're writing your
Or, if you're like me when you're trying to create
new products, find out what the biggest needs are...
and then create a product around solving that need.
When you do that, the copy almost writes itself.
Survey your current list and ask them for problems...
they'll tell you what's needed for you to make a sale.
You then present them solutions for their problems,
a way of getting what they want.
Do that and your products will sell better and your
copy will convert more.
When you're able to survey your market, or at least
put yourself into their shoes and create a customer
avatar, you're more likely to find out what features/
benefits of your product or service are most important.
And yes, objections will come up, so don't hide from
them. Instead, tackle them head-on in the copy.
You'll seem much more credible, honest, trustworthy,
So bottom line, selling is easy when you find out
what the person wants to buy and then you give them that.
It's as simple as that.
Of course, it took me almost 12 years to learn how
simple it is:-)
Hopefully this will shortcut your own learning curve by
a few years.