Who is the most skilled "internet marketing" copywriter?

35 replies
I know there are quite a few "copywriters" in our internet marketing niche, but who, in your opinion, is the best?

best = gets highest response

The problem with many copywriters in our niche is that many are wannabe copywriters that are very good at pretending to be skilled, but when it comes down to it, simply don't get results.

So... my question to you guys is, who is the single most skilled copywriter in the IM niche?

Please list names, and tell me why you think they're the "best".

Thanks!

Brad
P.S. The reason I'm asking this is because I'm considering hiring
#copywriter #internet marketing #skilled
  • Profile picture of the author David Raybould
    Hi Brad,

    Good to see you here on the CW forum...

    Best IM writer? I'd like to say it's me, but
    I can't honestly say that yet...

    My money's on Vin Montello.

    Killer conversions, and he'll sweat blood
    to achieve them for you.

    Hope that's useful dude.

    -David Raybould
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    • Profile picture of the author MikeHumphreys
      Hey Brad,

      Best varies from project to project. No one hits a home run everytime. No one. Any one who tells you that they hit a home run everytime is lying.

      There's a lot of factors that come into play. For example:

      * How well does your copywriter understand the product?

      * How much time do they have to do the research, write and polish the copy before handing it over to the client to use? Are they working on your project only... or is your project one of several open on their desk at the same time? Obviously, the fewer projects they work on a time, the more they will charge for their help. They have positioned themselves as writing high-quality sales copy rather than a high-volume copywriter.

      * How excited is the copywriter about your product? The more excited they are, the easier it is for them to write at the same level of enthusiasm that you (the client) already have for your product.

      * What is the product price point or offer? A great offer can overcome weak copy. Great copy rarely overcomes a lousy offer. For example, a client of mine took his product from $147 to $497 after getting some bad advice and saw his conversion rate drop from a 4% average to ZERO. It stayed that way for weeks until he returned the price back to $147. Then the response rate went back up to around 4%.

      * What kind of traffic is hitting your sales letter? Untargeted or junk traffic can crush your response rate. Case in point, Jason James recently shared with me that the copy I wrote for him converted between 5-10% on the front end, depending on the affiliate. There was one affiliate though who sent thousands of untargeted prospects and pulled a ZERO percent conversion rate. That person hammered the overall conversion rate.

      * Is your copywriter working with you to do split-testing/multi-variate testing on the sales letter? Are they consulting you through your launch and afterwards to keep the response rate high. If so, it gives you the chance to increase your response rate further without rewriting the sales letter again.

      Based on those criteria, who would I recommend you talk to for IM copywriting?

      In no particular order: Vin Montello. Bruce Wedding. Michel Fortin. Ray L. Edwards. Mike Humphreys.

      Hope that helps,

      Mike
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  • Profile picture of the author lenlatimer
    Some of the best writers don't hire out like Marlon Sanders or Yannik Silver.
    I'd say John Carlton or Michael Fortin.
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  • Profile picture of the author procopywriter
    Mike had some great points. And there have been some great copywriters mentioned.

    I'm a big fan of Shaune Clarke. He's one of my mentors. He's not well known. But he gets terrific results because he knows how to connect with the reader and just be real.

    He goes against the grain... I do too. And the results speak for themselves.
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    • Profile picture of the author David Maschke
      There are so many... Marlon Sanders, Terry Dean, Paul Myers, Ray Edwards, Frank Kern, Yo Han Mok, just to name a few.

      Each has found their own unique style, so it may be like comparing apples to oranges on who is the best. As for conversions, we wouldn't know those stats.
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  • Profile picture of the author Scott Murdaugh
    My guess is a guy no one has ever heard of who runs tons of mini sites across many different niches and never hires himself out.

    Beyond that, Vince Montello is probably the only copywriter who makes my jaw drop every time I see his work.
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  • Profile picture of the author sm97os
    Maria Veloso claims that she is one of the best. Her book is pretty good.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ken Strong
    Originally Posted by Brad Callen View Post

    P.S. The reason I'm asking this is because I'm considering hiring
    That should add some qualifiers into the question, then...

    You're asking who's "best"... does that mean that price is no object? If it is, that's going to make a difference...

    And presumably you want someone who's actually available to you... the very best may be booked out many months in advance, or may no longer be taking new clients on at all.

    That's almost a completely different question than simply asking who's best.
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    • Profile picture of the author Brad Callen
      Originally Posted by KenStrong View Post

      That should add some qualifiers into the question, then...

      You're asking who's "best"... does that mean that price is no object? If it is, that's going to make a difference...

      And presumably you want someone who's actually available to you... the very best may be booked out many months in advance, or may no longer be taking new clients on at all.

      That's almost a completely different question than simply asking who's best.
      1. price is not an object

      2. someone who may, in the longterm, be available only for us. we have plenty of internet marketing products to keep an excellent copywriter busy.

      Brad
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      • Profile picture of the author MikeHumphreys
        Originally Posted by Brad Callen View Post

        2. someone who may, in the longterm, be available only for us. we have plenty of internet marketing products to keep an excellent copywriter busy.

        Brad
        Brad, just a clarification because I'm sure that I'm not the only one with the question.

        Are you talking writing copy for your company and no one else in the IM niche... or no one else in ANY niche?

        The latter option would make it a lot harder for you to get a highly skilled copywriter to agree to because they would have to "fire" all of their other loyal clients, including ones that are in non-IM niches.

        Thanks,

        Mike
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        • Profile picture of the author Brad Callen
          Originally Posted by MikeHumphreys View Post

          Brad, just a clarification because I'm sure that I'm not the only one with the question.

          Are you talking writing copy for your company and no one else in the IM niche... or no one else in ANY niche?

          The latter option would make it a lot harder for you to get a highly skilled copywriter to agree to because they would have to "fire" all of their other loyal clients, including ones that are in non-IM niches.

          Thanks,

          Mike
          Hi Mike, good question. I would assume it would all come down to the price/year they'd be receiving from us, compared to a guesstimate on the earnings they would be getting from repeat clients... and not knowing for a fact that those repeat clients would need copy written.

          I know that one could argue that it's not entirely about the money, and partially about being able to write copy for a wide variety of niches, but this is specifically why I'd asked about copywriters in the 'internet marketing' niche. I'm looking for someone extremely passionate about our niche. We have a wide variety of products that are very unique to our niche, so the variety is definitely there.

          I don't want to have to "schedule in" a time for our copy to be written. I want to be able to call on our copywriter on a moments notice. He would be working towards a common overall goal and purpose, rather than being completely scattered between clients and jobs.

          Hope that clears things up.

          Brad
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  • Profile picture of the author Mr. Subtle
    Originally Posted by Brad Callen View Post

    I know there are quite a few "copywriters" in our internet marketing niche, but who, in your opinion, is the best?

    The problem with many copywriters in our niche is that many are wannabe copywriters that are very good at pretending to be skilled, but when it comes down to it, simply don't get results.

    So... my question to you guys is, who is the single most skilled copywriter in the IM niche?
    Who is the BEST Internet copywriter in the whole wide world?

    The answer is Jim Sheridan.

    WHO the HECK is he you say? Yeah, his name doesn't roll off the lips like the typical answers given here.

    Why is Jim Sheridan the best Internet copywriter? He has the RESULTS to back up his copy. And as everyone here knows... that is all that matters.

    Ever read his letter "WANTED: Novice Crew to 'Rob' Banks Legally... With An Inside Job!"? That sales letter generated (over) $20,000,000.00 in sales (in less than a year) for Agora. I still get MAJOR WOOD every time I read it and I'm an old phart.

    Name any other Internet copywriter who has beaten these numbers, on a single product, WITHOUT (or with) all the prelaunch HOOPLA you see these days. Heck, his sales letter doesn't even have a single TESTIMONIAL in it! (My guess is that Ken Strong, right now, is writing "Can you imagine what the numbers would have been if he had used testimonials!")

    If you can name any other copywriter who has beaten these numbers on a single product, then you have the new "BEST" Internet copywriter. Until then, all hail Jim "THE KING" Sheridan!
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    • Profile picture of the author Raydal
      Originally Posted by Mr. Subtle View Post

      Who is the BEST Internet copywriter in the whole wide world?

      The answer is Jim Sheridan.
      ...
      If you can name any other copywriter who has beaten these numbers on a single product, then you have the new "BEST" Internet copywriter. Until then, all hail Jim "THE KING" Sheridan!
      Is it Jim or James Sheridan?

      The Gary Halbert Letter

      I guess they are one and the same?

      -Ray Edwards
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    • Profile picture of the author Ron Herman
      Originally Posted by Mr. Subtle View Post

      Who is the BEST Internet copywriter in the whole wide world?

      The answer is Jim Sheridan.

      WHO the HECK is he you say? Yeah, his name doesn't roll off the lips like the typical answers given here.

      Why is Jim Sheridan the best Internet copywriter? He has the RESULTS to back up his copy. And as everyone here knows... that is all that matters.

      Ever read his letter "WANTED: Novice Crew to 'Rob' Banks Legally... With An Inside Job!"? That sales letter generated (over) $20,000,000.00 in sales (in less than a year) for Agora. I still get MAJOR WOOD every time I read it and I'm an old phart.

      Name any other Internet copywriter who has beaten these numbers, on a single product, WITHOUT (or with) all the prelaunch HOOPLA you see these days. Heck, his sales letter doesn't even have a single TESTIMONIAL in it! (My guess is that Ken Strong, right now, is writing "Can you imagine what the numbers would have been if he had used testimonials!")

      If you can name any other copywriter who has beaten these numbers on a single product, then you have the new "BEST" Internet copywriter. Until then, all hail Jim "THE KING" Sheridan!
      I have that "Rob Banks" sales letter in my swipe file but I still don't think its the best I have. It is damn good though. Some of Carlton's work in the golf niche is quite persuasive. In fact, I have seen some pretty good stuff by John Hostler.

      But, you never know who might write a killer letter. I think "best" would have to be based on a repeat performance track record rather than a one-trick-pony sales letter that happened to pull a bundle.

      Even mediocre batters in the big leagues hit a homer now and again. The title of BEST shouldn't be hinged to the performance of a single piece of copy no matter how much money it brought in.

      Another thing to bear in mind is that very few copywriters have the luxury of the client running their copy unadulterated. Copy is "stepped on" far too often by laymen who think they know better than the copywriter even after they pay top dollar to hire a pro, go figure...

      I happen to believe that I am one of the better copywriters in the world (though I could be just a tad prejudiced), but I am rarely available for hire.
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    • Profile picture of the author Asher
      Originally Posted by Mr. Subtle View Post

      Ever read his letter "WANTED: Novice Crew to 'Rob' Banks Legally... With An Inside Job!"? That sales letter generated (over) $20,000,000.00 in sales (in less than a year) for Agora. I still get MAJOR WOOD every time I read it and I'm an old phart.


      I literally laughed out when I read that. Heh

      Asher
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  • Profile picture of the author Bruce Wedding
    Hi Brad,

    Basically, you want a staff copywriter. It might be possible to find him here in the WF but I'd widen the search if I were you. If you're ready to pay $150k or more a year, you'll be able to pull a good copywriter from a DM company. Why not subscribe to DM News for free and check their classified?

    I'll tell anyone here publicly that you and Matt were the best clients I ever had. It was a privilege to work for you.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Dhuli
      Hi Brad,

      Like Ken said, the IM copywriter who gets the highest response
      will be very well known also.

      That means he'd be booked out many months in advance and you
      might have to shell out a significant sum of money to get him to
      write ONLY for you.

      I guess a better option for you would be to go with a lesser known,
      up and coming IM copywriter whose copy is getting high conversions
      consistently.

      People like that would be delighted to work with you full time and
      though you've said that price is not an object, the expense to
      your company would also be relatively less.


      Thanks,
      Dean.
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    • Profile picture of the author Brad Callen
      Originally Posted by Bruce Wedding View Post

      Hi Brad,

      Basically, you want a staff copywriter. It might be possible to find him here in the WF but I'd widen the search if I were you. If you're ready to pay $150k or more a year, you'll be able to pull a good copywriter from a DM company. Why not subscribe to DM News for free and check their classified?

      I'll tell anyone here publicly that you and Matt were the best clients I ever had. It was a privilege to work for you.
      And Bruce, thanks for the kind words :-)

      So, you think looking in the classified for DM writers in DM news would be a better route than looking here? I'm clueless when it comes to DM News, but I'd assume people posting in classified ads would have no idea what the "internet marketing" niche is, let alone writing copy for the internet. I could be completely wrong though, but that was my initial thought.
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      • Profile picture of the author TimSchaefer
        Originally Posted by Brad Callen View Post

        And Bruce, thanks for the kind words :-)

        So, you think looking in the classified for DM writers in DM news would be a better route than looking here? I'm clueless when it comes to DM News, but I'd assume people posting in classified ads would have no idea what the "internet marketing" niche is, let alone writing copy for the internet. I could be completely wrong though, but that was my initial thought.
        All the DM people I've ever met would be clueless to IM. But there are certainly writers hailing from the offline world who have turned at least some of their attention toward it. Look at people like David Deutsch or John Carlton, for instance.

        During the time I spent in direct mail, I kept up with what's going on online, so I'm proof they're out there.

        This type of writer will also be used to staying in close contact with "the boss" and working more as a team toward the big picture goal than your average freelancer juggling clients and having to pay attention to where the next few projects are coming from. It's just the nature of the relationship.

        After hearing Bruce praise you over lunch (twice, actually) just as he did here, I know I sure wouldn't hesitate to take the job if given the chance.
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  • Profile picture of the author colmodwyer
    If you can name any other copywriter who has beaten these numbers on a single product, then you have the new "BEST" Internet copywriter. Until then, all hail Jim "THE KING" Sheridan!
    Ol' Jimmy Boy has access to a 4 million strong list though. So you can't really compare him to folks selling $47 e-books with a list of 100K if you're looking at just money made.

    Brad, you've opened a can of worms. BUT, there's a solution...

    A very, very expensive solution.

    Hire all these copywriters whose names keep coming up and split test their copy against each other... It'll take you quite a few product launches to get statistically significant results... But that's how you'll find your man (or woman).

    Now of course the usual suspects are established writers, so you're not taking into account copywriter's on their way up, so the "best" you find probably might not be the "best" for too long.

    Colm
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    • Profile picture of the author Mr. Subtle
      Originally Posted by colmodwyer View Post

      Ol' Jimmy Boy has access to a 4 million strong list though. So you can't really compare him to folks selling $47 e-books with a list of 100K if you're looking at just money made.
      "Ol' Jimmy Boy" didn't have a list.

      The product was the FOREX trader's and his. Instead of going the ClickBank route he made (similar) arrangements with Agora. Anyone here who has an info product that deals with how to make money in business, real estate, investing, trading, etc. can do the same thing with Agora. So your point is moot.
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  • Profile picture of the author David Raybould
    Colm you're right...

    This is a can of worms.

    I was just thinking about the only way
    to get accurate and fair numbers would
    be to split test everyone against each
    other, but you beat me to the post.

    Brad, I think Dean Dhuli raised a good
    point - a lot of these top shelf guys
    are going to be booked for months
    out.

    If you find someone who claims to be
    in that higher echelon, and they aren't
    booked solid for a while, you have to
    ask yourself why...

    Dean's suggesting to hire an up and
    comer could be great though.

    If you do your due diligence, ask for figures
    and things, you could probably find an
    up and comer who can deliver everything
    you need.

    And someone like that probably wouldn't
    be so reluctant to leave their established
    clients etc.

    Hope that's useful

    -David Raybould
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  • Profile picture of the author warezguy45
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    • Profile picture of the author Bruce Wedding
      Originally Posted by warezguy45 View Post

      I would put my money with Frank Kern as he know a lot and does a good job
      And he makes as much or more than Brad as a marketer so what's the point of mentioning him? He ain't a candidate.

      The concept of split testing is good and one that more marketers should use. But there's no such thing as a winner that will win every time just because he won once.

      Ideally you'd hire 3 good copywriters for every letter and establish a control with a significant response.

      You're dealing with humans so the same guy isn't going to win every time. We're not all Becivenga..
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  • Profile picture of the author henrychai
    how about John Carlton? even eben pagan recommend him
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  • Profile picture of the author tf8252
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    • Profile picture of the author MikeHumphreys
      John Carlton doesn't match Brad's desired criteria. John charges $30K plus royalties per sales letter. He's booked for months in advance. John is a brilliant copywriter -- one of the best ever... I don't believe he's written much for the internet marketing niche.

      Brad wants someone that is an experience IM niche copywriter and produce results consistently.

      Brad... I suggest you talk to Mike Filasaime or Russell Brunson. Both of them went the route a few years ago of hiring a in-house/in-staff copywriter. I don't believe either one of them hired a well-known copywriter... if memory serves me correctly, both of them went with "budding talents" instead.

      As Bruce mentioned, Brad it's been a pleasure working with you. My dealings with you have always been professionally pleasant and positive. I think I speak for every copywriter you've worked with to date, that if you ever need help, just drop any of us a line and we will do our best to help you.

      Take care,

      Mike
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      • Profile picture of the author Magic Johnson
        Ray L. Edwards Copywriting Coaching and Mentoring Program

        Try this guy, I find his advice very helpful on a another forum.
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        • Profile picture of the author Ron Herman
          Another excellent copywriter who is also on this forum (user ID MontelloMarketing) is Vin Montello. He has done some work for Chris McNeeny (Affiliate Project X, Day Job Killer) though he may be a bit steep for you.
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  • Profile picture of the author colmodwyer
    "Ol' Jimmy Boy" didn't have a list.

    The product was the FOREX trader's and his. Instead of going the ClickBank route he made (similar) arrangements with Agora. Anyone here who has an info product that deals with how to make money in business, real estate, investing, trading, etc. can do the same thing with Agora. So your point is moot.
    How is my point moot? That says nothing about his ability as a copywriter.

    Besides, I'm sure there are single products that have made more than $20million in online sales - so by your measuring stick the best copywriters would be working with Amazon and the like pitching I-phones, Kindles and so on.

    Colm
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    • Profile picture of the author Brad Callen
      Originally Posted by Mr. Subtle

      "Ol' Jimmy Boy" didn't have a list.

      The product was the FOREX trader's and his. Instead of going the ClickBank route he made (similar) arrangements with Agora. Anyone here who has an info product that deals with how to make money in business, real estate, investing, trading, etc. can do the same thing with Agora. So your point is moot.
      Originally Posted by colmodwyer View Post

      How is my point moot? That says nothing about his ability as a copywriter.

      Besides, I'm sure there are single products that have made more than $20million in online sales - so by your measuring stick the best copywriters would be working with Amazon and the like pitching I-phones, Kindles and so on.

      Colm
      Hey guys, I'm actually interested in conversions, not $$... as $$ depends on quality and number of visitors and that's out of the copywriter's hand.

      Brad
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      • Profile picture of the author Mr. Subtle
        Originally Posted by Brad Callen View Post

        Hey guys, I'm actually interested in conversions, not $$... as $$ depends on quality and number of visitors and that's out of the copywriter's hand.
        Huh? Your conversion rate will depend on the quality and number of visitors too.

        Are the affiliates sending warm traffic from their list(s) or are the affiliates sending cold traffic from their PPC efforts? This too is out of the copywriter's hand.
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        • Profile picture of the author Brad Callen
          Originally Posted by Mr. Subtle View Post

          Huh? Your conversion rate will depend on the quality and number of visitors too.

          Are the affiliates sending warm traffic from their list(s) or are the affiliates sending cold traffic from their PPC efforts? This too is out of the copywriter's hand.
          Good point. Sometimes I type before I think :-) I guess any way we look at it, it's tough to measure "best". I think conversion rate based on:

          jv mailings + ppc traffic

          ... would be the most measurable. Everything else has way too many variables and unknowns. (not that those 2 don't, but they have far less than other traffic)

          Brad
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  • Profile picture of the author Bald Brit
    Best? IMHO, it's probably a three way tie between Bob Bly, Dan Kennedy, and John Carlton.
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    • Profile picture of the author Brad Callen
      Originally Posted by Bald Brit View Post

      Best? IMHO, it's probably a three way tie between Bob Bly, Dan Kennedy, and John Carlton.
      hmm... Dan writes very little for the internet marketing niche... and hardly knows hows to turn on a computer.

      I'm looking for guys that are 95% online copywriters for the "internet marketing" niche.

      Brad
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  • Profile picture of the author Bigsofty
    Brad, a suggestion:

    Find the closest match to your product on Clickbank that's the highest seller but not direct competition, then see if they'll be nice enough to tell you who wrote the copy.



    I say the closest match as there are different segments of the IM niche. Are you selling to newbies who want the dream, or old-timers who want better resources? To someone who wants to take their main site into the big league, or someone who wants to make the process of banging out dozens of mini sites easier?

    That's 4 different prospects. Someone who's done great at selling the dream to newbies may fall flat on their face when it comes to squeezing cash out of old timers and vice versa.

    Bottom line though, like all sales, you're only as good as your next deal. You may even find some of the more successful are becoming lazy, enjoying the aroma of their big leather chair a little too much. Some hungry young gun squirming on a plastic patio seat in their parent's basement might give you better results - because they have to.

    Perhaps someone who wasn't so hot last week just picked up a tip this afternoon, and is now a better writer?

    My point is, there is no #1.

    You're chasing a dream, as much or more so than your prospects. That's good; it's the only way to catch 'em - but don't spend too much time on excellent V excellent+ (because worrying about your copy is your copywriter's job).


    B.

    (www.copywriter-ac.com)


    PS. So when IS KE2 coming out?
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