"So You Want to Get Clients and Make Big Bucks as a Copywriter?" [How To]

57 replies
Breaking this out into its own thread because I don't think people are seeing it...

Make a list of 20 companies you'd like to promote the products or services of. Things you truly believe in. You can take two days to get this list together.

Call the main number. Say to the receptionist, "Hi, I'm not sure who I should speak with. Maybe you can help me." (short pause; they may say "Sure.") "I'm looking for the person who makes decisions about advertising and writing projects. But I don't know who that would be there..." (trail off)

Wait. Say nothing.

The gatekeeper will either send you through or, rarely, ask, "What's this about?" in which case you can answer, "I write advertising letters for companies that bring them sales." And then stop and say nothing again. Your call should be put through.

Sometimes they will put you through so fast with this method that you won't know who you're being sent to. And sometimes it'll connect to voicemail.

If a live human answers, you don't know if you got the right person or not. So after they answer, say, "Hi, (their name); I'm not sure we should be speaking." This is truthful and makes them lean into the call. Whatdya mean, we shouldn't be speaking?! "Reception transferred me to you. I'm looking for the person who's responsible for making decisions about advertising and writing projects. But I'm not sure if that's you..." (trail off)

They will tell you Yes or No. If no, get transferred to the correct person.

If you get voicemail:

"Hi, (their name); this is (your name). I'm not sure we should be speaking. (Reception or the person who referred you) transferred me to you--I'm looking for the person who is responsible for deciding about advertising and writing projects. But I'm not sure if that's you. Can you please give me a call back and let me know if it IS you, or if there's someone else I should be speaking with? It's 00:00 here in (your location; time zone differences matter), and I'll be in my office until 00:00. My number is ###-###-####. Thanks!"

If you ARE connected to the correct live person, or they call you back and ask, "So what's this about?":

"I appreciate that. Well, I'm a copywriter and I write sales letters for companies that bring them a big bump in revenue. But I don't know if you have any projects on the go or upcoming like that..." (trail off)

Now have a conversation. They will or they won't have projects now or upcoming. They will or they won't be open to outsourcing the writing. None of that is under your control. If they don't have a project or won't outsource, that is NOT rejection. That is Not A Fit. What you can control is YOU, calling up and finding out.

Out of the 20, all you're looking for is one Yes. Price yourself accordingly. Get them to give you the numbers, and make sure you're solving a minimum $60,000 problem so you can charge $3000 without an issue. If you don't know how to do that, watch this:

http://www.warriorforum.com/offline-...uch-again.html

New to the game? Watch this:

http://www.warriorforum.com/offline-...s-what-do.html

If you go through this first list of 20 and nobody has any such projects, make another list. It should only take you 2 or 3 days to make those calls and have the 20 conversations. You may have to call people back whom you have gotten the names of but couldn't connect with. Just ask reception to connect you to them, and sound like you deserve it. Never, ever ask "How are you today?" because all that does is trumpet Here Comes A Salesperson. Over 2 weeks you should easily be able to talk to the right people at 40 companies.

That'll be $97 for the WSO I just gave you. Get to work.
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    • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
      Originally Posted by Mark Pescetti View Post

      Great stuff Jason!

      Mark
      Thank you, fellows; I appreciate the acknowledgements on this one.

      For those who are going to use this: follow the script. I didn't get into the psychological reasons behind why all of this works, because it took me long enough just to type out what I did. Don't try to "shorten" things and remove steps, because it will not work if you don't say the words and follow the order given.

      And Relax. One business pro talking to another. Don't get "deer in the headlights" syndrome.
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      • Profile picture of the author DavePalermo
        To say Jason is a genius is an understatement.
        Thank you for that post.
        I have actually been using e-mail along the lines of dropping names as well as cold calling companies to make sales.

        Again, thanks!
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        • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
          To validate Jason's approach,
          I was using a slight variation to it before I came across his,
          and it has landed us Puma, 10 #1 retail brands and a whole lot smaller clients...
          all repeat too.

          Best,
          Ewen
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      • Profile picture of the author Sebulba
        Great Script -- the psychology is brilliant and clear to anyone who has ever made or received sales calls.

        Seb

        Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

        Thank you, fellows; I appreciate the acknowledgements on this one.

        For those who are going to use this: follow the script. I didn't get into the psychological reasons behind why all of this works, because it took me long enough just to type out what I did. Don't try to "shorten" things and remove steps, because it will not work if you don't say the words and follow the order given.

        And Relax. One business pro talking to another. Don't get "deer in the headlights" syndrome.
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        • Great ideas and script.

          I used the same in my 9 years in recruitment to get new clients.

          Selling a service like sales copy can be done this way for sure but it has some major drawbacks compared to other marketing methods of attraction.

          Approaching cold throws your positioning into a tail spin from the get-Go.

          You become the one who needs them, and that is never a good thing.

          You become the vendor and not the trusted adviser.

          They feel they can beat you down on price and squeeze your conditions cuase you approached them after all. they feel they have the power.

          It's always better when they come to you...in so many ways.
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          For 12 ways to sell more stuff to more people today...go to...www.peterbrennan.net
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          • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
            Originally Posted by Quality Copywriter View Post

            Great ideas and script.

            I used the same in my 9 years in recruitment to get new clients.

            Selling a service like sales copy can be done this way for sure but it has some major drawbacks compared to other marketing methods of attraction.

            Approaching cold throws your positioning into a tail spin from the get-Go.

            You become the one who needs them, and that is never a good thing.

            You become the vendor and not the trusted adviser.

            They feel they can beat you down on price and squeeze your conditions cuase you approached them after all. they feel they have the power.

            It's always better when they come to you...in so many ways.
            Well I disagree about it screwing up your positioning. All you're doing is having a conversation. And you're having it now.

            You don't know what my training is like, so you wouldn't know that I actually train my students to quickly get rid of people who are not a fit. WE do the rejecting.

            Also, if you looked at the Monetizing the Problem video, you'll see I give a way the method to stop price squeezing.

            Finally, "people coming to you" are not always the best thing. When you call someone to have a conversation, you might find you're the ONLY candidate because you just created the opportunity. I have had three full time high-level jobs created for me just by calling. No other candidates. They didn't want to consider anyone else.

            If they come to you, they're probably talking to other vendors. So I just don't believe it's true that them coming to you is always best.

            I think you have some misconceptions about prospecting.
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          • Profile picture of the author Mark Pescetti
            Originally Posted by Quality Copywriter View Post

            Approaching cold throws your positioning into a tail spin from the get-Go.

            You become the one who needs them, and that is never a good thing.

            You become the vendor and not the trusted adviser.

            They feel they can beat you down on price and squeeze your conditions cuase you approached them after all. they feel they have the power.

            It's always better when they come to you...in so many ways.
            Having a good attraction-based model is a given.

            But approaching people/companies - because you KNOW you can help them achieve more profitability doesn't position you poorly when money enters the conversation.

            Here's the deal:

            You take your worth where ever you go.

            If you have scarcity issues around money...

            If you feel uncomfortable asking for what you're worth...

            You'll have a problem whether people approach you... or vice versa.

            But make no mistake about...

            Approaching companies you think you can help play a bigger game isn't bad positioning.

            That being said...

            If you're desperate for money; for clients and you don't stand by your guns (i.e get what you're worth,) then don't approach people.

            You should be approaching companies you've been watching.

            Look at their advertising.

            Tell them you can do better.

            Give them a taste for how you can do it.

            Throw out a number you'd like to help them achieve. (Either in conversions or marketshare.)

            Then tell them how much it'll be to invest in your services to make it happen.

            I've gotten clients by shooting off an email to them, including a football team.

            It's not bad positioning - if you believe what you're saying is true.

            Ask Mr. Draper. (Here he is pitching to Dow.)

            Mark
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  • Profile picture of the author max5ty
    Jason, I've read your posts.

    You're a genius when it comes to telemarketing.

    You remind me of Leslie.

    She made a little over a million dollars in 6 months with a unique idea she had in telemarketing.

    It's so easy anyone can do it.

    Thanks for your post.
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  • In the B2B world I mostly operate in I recommend clients do both outbound and inbound. They complement each other tremendously well. I get the point about positioning, but I can't imagine waiting around when there are plenty of great prospects I can do business with by simply initiating the contact.

    In fact, good businesses want to be contacted. They don't want to be harassed by people that can't help them, but they want to know what quality vendors are available to help them get projects done and make more profit. Yes, they research on the web, but you should support your web presence with the telephone. It will be easier, faster and more profitable to nurture leads with personal contact.

    Price negotiation is always a fact of life, but if they try to beat down your rates at their leisure with no regard for quality, they are not a good prospect in the first place. Time to bail.

    A quality inbound content marketing effort married to professional lead gen prospecting will deliver fantastic results for years to come.
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    - Jack Trout
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  • Great script from Jason.

    Now in case anyone is terrified of using the dog and bone (UK language for phone).

    I guess it can be good fun (I imagine any fear vanishes after 25 calls) but might be a bit of a slog (I'm saying this having never done it). So at least give it a shot.

    And you can always use this technique (if you are selling "copywriting" sell it by using copywriting).

    By sending the good people (your target audience) a sales letter, postcard or flyer.


    For big league clients put a package together and send it by FedEx.

    In the history of the known universe they have never not been opened.


    Steve


    P.S. And as Mark started it, here's one of my favourite Mad Men clips -

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    • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
      Originally Posted by Steve The Copywriter View Post

      Great script from Jason.

      Now in case anyone is terrified of using the dog and bone (UK language for phone).

      I guess it can be good fun (I imagine any fear vanishes after 25 calls) but might be a bit of a slog (I'm saying this having never done it). So at least give it a shot.

      And you can always use this technique (if you are selling "copywriting" sell it by using copywriting).

      By sending the good people (your target audience) a sales letter, postcard or flyer.


      For big league clients put a package together and send it by FedEx.

      In the history of the known universe they have never not been opened.


      Steve


      P.S. And as Mark started it, here's one of my favourite Mad Men clips -

      Mad Men - Best Ad Pitch - The Carousel - YouTube
      Steve, I have made it so easy for anyone to call and have a conversation. There's zero risk and nothing to be embarassed about. As another sales pro pointed out, my method is as easy as "calling up the movie theater and asking for showtimes".

      Should you have inbound and outbound prospecting methods? Of course. My OP is for people who don't have time to wait and wonder, but had no idea what to say on the phone to get results.
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  • Profile picture of the author max5ty
    Jason, you're in sales so you can probably relate to this...

    This use to happen in the car business when I was a sales manager.

    A sales person comes in and tells you they've tried everything with a customer, and couldn't get anywhere? Bob and Mary are late to pick their kid up from the baby sitter. Little Johnny is getting off the bus in 10 minutes. Etc.

    You tell them to go back out and say this...and you give them something to say...

    you can tell from their look they're kind of doubting you, and think you have no clue what you're talking about.

    The good sales people that listen to your advice usually discover you do know what you're doing.

    Reminded me of your post.

    Those who become successful, are willing to listen to other successful people.

    Your advice is worth listening to.

    Thanks.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
    For anyone actually using this method, I just added an instructive post about price shopping in this Offline thread:

    http://www.warriorforum.com/offline-...ml#post8745142

    And Dan McCoy's post right underneath that one is also excellent.

    You'll see connections back to what I talked about in the OP here, and also some challenges to ideas you may not even know you have, but are unconsciously tripping you up.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
    So I doubt anyone is actually using this method. All I see are brainless posts about "signing up for freelance sites." Duh. If you do that, and that's all you do, you'll always be a commodity--and command commodity pricing.

    I have a CHALLENGE.

    I don't have time or the inclination to get a list together.

    So you get me a list of 20 legitimate companies you want ME to call about copywriting work. I will call them, and let you know the results. All I need is a company name and a phone #.

    Stick to mainstream companies, please. I'm not interested in writing for Adam & Eve or some whackjob.

    If there is a project but it's for a company I personally am not interested in writing for, it may be an opportunity for someone here.

    I am doing this to demonstrate how it works and that it works. Of course, a possible result is that all 20 will have in-house copywriters or contractors they're totally happy with, and they're not interested in new outside writers at this time. That's not the point. The point is that you can GET these conversations, they are painless, and if you get enough of them you will get work.

    If this isn't putting my money where my mouth is, I don't know what is.

    Or will you learn nothing and say, "Oh well that's Jason, of course he can do it, but I never could"?
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    • Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

      So I doubt anyone is actually using this method. All I see are brainless posts about "signing up for freelance sites." Duh. If you do that, and that's all you do, you'll always be a commodity--and command commodity pricing.
      I can understand freelance sites if you are starting out, and I began to fill out profiles on a couple sites years ago but never got into it, but from what I've heard about elance, odesk and similar sites is that it is very time consuming to work the system.

      I'd rather spend that time calling a well-targeted list of high-probability prospects. Since I know I will get orders from a certain percentage, I believe an outbound prospecting approach is LESS risk than trying to work the freelance site system. And I'm sure it is way more profitable. Less risk, better prospects, more money.

      To keep with the theme, here is Don being a boss:

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      Marketing is not a battle of products. It is a battle of perceptions.
      - Jack Trout
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      • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
        Originally Posted by KingOfContentMarketing View Post

        I can understand freelance sites if you are starting out, and I began to fill out profiles on a couple sites years ago but never got into it, but from what I've heard about elance, odesk and similar sites is that it is very time consuming to work the system.

        I'd rather spend that time calling a well-targeted list of high-probability prospects. Since I know I will get orders from a certain percentage, I believe an outbound prospecting approach is LESS risk than trying to work the freelance site system. And I'm sure it is way more profitable. Less risk, better prospects, more money.
        CORRECT. You STAND OUT. You often don't have any competition at all. You can set the price. SO much better than freelance sites.

        I occasionally bid on targeted projects on elance. It's the only freelance site I actually use. I am always the highest bidder. I'm only interested in smoking out those prospects who value QUALITY and SKILL, not the lowest price. And I win it, or I don't. I don't give a **** whether I win or not--if I bid on whatever, 12 or 20 of these things, I'm going to win one. And that's all I want.

        Funnily enough, nobody has ever declined my proposal even if it was way out of their budget.

        I am going to share something now. Something I've never shared in these words before, and may never again. Only because I feel like it. Here's the secret: I very rarely bid for the actual project the prospect has written down. I try to TRANSFORM the project. Yes: transform it into something else, something bigger, something more expensive. Something only I have the ability to implement. Something those other contractors without my skillset and experience are not even going to have a sad, sorry, pathetic chance in hell of doing.

        And once in awhile, I get one. Again, one every so often is all I need. I'll give you an example: my first transformation. An accountant wanted a letter to send around to other accountants for generating referrals. I knew this just wasn't going to be effective. So I wrote a proposal for an entire Referral System--one in which *I* would do a couple weeks of calling on her behalf (an hour a day). Do you think another writer would be able do that? Would want to do that? Would even THINK to do that?! No way! I also coached her via skype, got her script together, and served it all up on a silver platter. I used every single character elance allowed you to employ to explain this idea in the proposal. Was she surprised & impressed? Did she see me as unique? Did she appreciate the time it took me to write that proposal?

        Transformation: dinky $100 (perhaps) project to $3,000 project where I was the only possible provider. Cancel Project A for everyone else, Invite Jason alone for Project B. Sorry everybody! But you get it, or you don't. Dems the breaks.

        Don't fight with other people. Transform opportunities. Do what no one else is doing. Take advantage of your strengths to do so. Instead of fighting for $200 or whatever, go for the gold. It's a lot easier to make somebody happy for $3,000 instead of ten $300 customers.

        Odds are you will do nothing different after reading this, though.

        Now somebody get me that list of 20 companies. I can't get my head around what I'd like to write about for myself, so I'm asking YOU to do it.
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        • Profile picture of the author Joan Altz
          Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

          I am going to share something now. Something I've never shared in these words before, and may never again. Only because I feel like it. Here's the secret: I very rarely bid for the actual project the prospect has written down. I try to TRANSFORM the project. Yes: transform it into something else, something bigger, something more expensive. Something only I have the ability to implement. Something those other contractors without my skillset and experience are not even going to have a sad, sorry, pathetic chance in hell of doing.
          This happened to me twice this year. One guy hunted me down and wanted me to sell his domains for him at $50 a pop. I turned him down. He offered $100. I turned him down again.

          Then he said: "I don't think you understand the magnitude of this deal. These domains are high end [they were] and you'll sell these easily..yadda, yadda..."

          So I said to myself, 'Screw it. I'm going to toss a proposal at this guy and see what happens.'

          The proposal I made was that I would take one of his domains - a great one, worth about 350K! - and turn it into a sales training site/membership site [the gist of it, but a lot more] - and I would do it for $7,500 up front, plus 50% commission on sales up to $20,000, and then 10% commission on sales for continued maintenance after reaching the 20K.

          Got it!

          So that was one of two times this year that I did my own little transform thingy. The second one started as a $1200 project and ended up an $11,500 agreement.
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  • Profile picture of the author davehayes
    Wow Jason, thats a powerful post, I can relate to it, but not to the degree you have done, but it certainly works.
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  • Profile picture of the author cjhoude
    Hey Jason, this is great advice. I would add for the benefit of new writers that if this all seems like a lot of scary work and calls to make that it's okay. I am personally terrified of making phone calls myself but it only takes one great client to have repeat work for years.

    The thing is, it is really hard for a company to find a good copywriter. It really is. I have been on that end of things and it can be a nightmare. They do not want to have to go out and find more copywriters any more than you want to go out and call a bunch of business owners yourself. They would much rather keep giving the work to you as long as you can produce effective copy and you are easy to work with.

    In my experience, any client who can afford a decent copywriter has a lot more work to farm out and they are looking for somebody reliable.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
    HOLD IT -- Are You Saying That

    NOBODY can get a list of 20 interesting companies together? NOBODY wants me to do this calling work for you? NOBODY even SAW the huge tip I shared yesterday?!

    Well that's weird.

    I guess everyone has shut down for Christmas.

    Big Mistake. This is the largest buying season of the year.
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  • Profile picture of the author Content Commando
    haha awesome. I've never tried the trail off method.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
    Get out there and start DOING this...I've made more copywriting money in the past two weeks than I have in the past 6 months.

    Yes, during the Christmas week.

    To be totally fair, I haven't spent much energy on getting copywriting work in the past 6 months, but still...the work is out there. That's your takeaway. Go get it.
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    • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
      When deciding between prospecting or positioning, always ask yourself, "WWFRD (What would Frank Rumbauskas do)?"

      LOL

      Alex
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      • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
        Originally Posted by Alex Cohen View Post

        When deciding between prospecting or positioning, always ask yourself, "WWFRD (What would Frank Rumbauskas do)?"

        LOL

        Alex
        Huh?

        The fact is, Alex, most people do neither.

        You need to do both.

        Incidentally, I heard of Frank before I really amped up the sales training I got for myself. We at the company I worked at abandoned prospecting in belief that his methods would get us sales. Never got any. We went back to prospecting.

        Positioning by itself is not enough. And prospecting the way I do it IS a way of positioning.

        Most people are sitting on their asses right now, waiting for the action to start again in mid-January. I'm trying to show them that the action never stopped.
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        • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
          Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

          Huh?

          The fact is, Alex, most people do neither.

          You need to do both.

          Incidentally, I heard of Frank before I really amped up the sales training I got for myself. We at the company I worked at abandoned prospecting in belief that his methods would get us sales. Never got any. We went back to prospecting.

          Positioning by itself is not enough. And prospecting the way I do it IS a way of positioning.

          Most people are sitting on their asses right now, waiting for the action to start again in mid-January. I'm trying to show them that the action never stopped.
          Jason, I understand you're a "true believer" and feel the need to evangelize your method.

          No problem... it takes all kinds to make the world go 'round.

          So you're trying to motivate those who fall into the category of "people sitting on their asses" by getting them to cold call???

          Good luck.

          Alex
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          • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
            Originally Posted by Alex Cohen View Post

            Jason, I understand you're a "true believer" and feel the need to evangelize your method.

            No problem... it takes all kinds to make the world go 'round.

            So you're trying to motivate those who fall into the category of "people sitting on their asses" by getting them to cold call???

            Good luck.

            Alex
            Yeah, and I've been doing it for two years to rave reviews, too! Because it works.

            And I'm not "evangalizing" -- I'm sharing things that work, for free.

            The method I gave in the OP is simple and painless.

            If someone is sitting around waiting for something to happen...they need to know that it isn't. They need to go out and make it happen! People aren't going to approach them--their potential prospects don't even know they exist. All the positioning in the world won't help you if no one is looking.

            Obviously a few people agree with me.

            Come on up to the Offline subforum sometime.
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            • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
              Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post


              If someone is sitting around waiting for something to happen...they need to know that it isn't. They need to go out and make it happen! People aren't going to approach them--their potential prospects don't even know they exist. All the positioning in the world won't help you if no one is looking.
              Is that what you think someone who has positioned himself correctly and doesn't prospect is doing... sitting around waiting for something to happen?

              Alex
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              • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
                Originally Posted by Alex Cohen View Post

                Is that what you think someone who has positioned himself correctly and doesn't prospect is doing... sitting around waiting for something to happen?

                Alex
                You can have the best branding in the world, but if nobody knows about it, what good is it?

                If you have another method for bringing in high level clients, why don't you start a thread about it?

                I even offered to MAKE the calls myself (!) and nobody took me up on it. The main contributors have clients and are working, so they don't need the help. But what does that say about the rest of the readers here?! Fact: they are doing NOTHING. But hoping. And when their money runs out, they'll go back to a job.

                I really don't care if someone is offended. I am giving proven methods away for free here and perhaps someone will actually use them. Maybe one person. That's good enough for me.

                You, Alex, may not like calling. Probably because nobody ever showed you how to do it properly. But don't act like it doesn't work. Claude Whitacre said my method is as easy as calling up a movie theater and asking what the showtimes are. Can't get much less stressful than that.
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                • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
                  Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

                  You can have the best branding in the world, but if nobody knows about it, what good is it?

                  If you have another method for bringing in high level clients, why don't you start a thread about it?

                  I even offered to MAKE the calls myself (!) and nobody took me up on it. The main contributors have clients and are working, so they don't need the help. But what does that say about the rest of the readers here?! Fact: they are doing NOTHING. But hoping. And when their money runs out, they'll go back to a job.

                  I really don't care if someone is offended. I am giving proven methods away for free here and perhaps someone will actually use them. Maybe one person. That's good enough for me.

                  You, Alex, may not like calling. Probably because nobody ever showed you how to do it properly. But don't act like it doesn't work. Claude Whitacre said my method is as easy as calling up a movie theater and asking what the showtimes are. Can't get much less stressful than that.
                  Here's the bottom line Jason...

                  Guys selling positioning systems and coaching, trash cold calling.

                  Guys selling prospecting systems and coaching, trash positioning.

                  I get it.

                  It's called using a straw man. And is an effective persuasion technique.

                  Truth is, both methods work when implemented correctly.

                  Alex
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                  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
                    Originally Posted by Alex Cohen View Post

                    Here's the bottom line Jason...

                    Guys selling positioning systems and coaching, trash cold calling.

                    Guys selling prospecting systems and coaching, trash positioning.

                    I get it.

                    It's called using a straw man. And is an effective persuasion technique.

                    Truth is, both methods work when implemented correctly.

                    Alex
                    Alex, I never trashed positioning.

                    I said by itself it doesn't work. The greatest branding in the middle of nowhere that nobody ever sees is useless. Just like if you make calls and you don't know how to do it effectively, that's useless, too.

                    In post #26 in this very thread I said you need to do both.

                    I use positioning, and I drive people to it. One of the ways I do that is by calling. It's fast and effective because I do it right. Part of your positioning can be how you call.

                    Thanks for a lively discussion.
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                    • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
                      Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

                      Alex, I never trashed positioning.

                      I said by itself it doesn't work. The greatest branding in the middle of nowhere that nobody ever sees is useless. Just like if you make calls and you don't know how to do it effectively, that's useless, too.
                      Of course. A good positioning strategy must be coupled with targeted lead generation. That's common knowledge.

                      In post #26 in this very thread I said you need to do both.
                      I read it.

                      And I don't agree.

                      As examples, at the present time I have a promotion running that is not requiring me to prospect at all. And I'm getting more work than I can handle.

                      And in the six years I've been "in the game", I haven't needed to make one phone call to get work.

                      Alex
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  • Profile picture of the author seekdefo
    Nice work Jason. Easier for people from us and uk to do it
    Signature

    Brevity is the soul of wit

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  • Profile picture of the author Daniel Scott
    Bravo Jason.

    I don't put the time into freelancing I used to, with several other companies taking up my time...

    But I do know what you've described works and works brilliantly, because I have VERY successful freelancing friends doing exactly that.

    And here's what I love about it...

    It's simple.

    Pick up the phone and make the calls. You can say, yeah, I've made 50 calls - that's a measurable action. And one that WILL eventually translate into work.

    Loving it.

    -Daniel
    Signature

    Always looking for badass direct-response copywriters. PM me if we don't know each other and you're looking for work.

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  • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
    I've publically offered Warrior's to listen as I make calls.

    Lots said it was a brilliant idea.

    A few said they would take me up
    on it.

    Not one followed through.

    They just had to listen, not talk to anyone!

    As the saying goes, 90% of winning is just showing up.

    And the crazy thing is they were going to be listening in
    to the exact script that landed Puma, 10 #1 brands plus scores of smaller customers.

    You can lead them to water, but you surely can't make them drink.

    Best,
    Ewen
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    • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
      Originally Posted by ewenmack View Post

      I've publically offered Warrior's to listen as I make calls.

      Lots said it was a brilliant idea.

      A few said they would take me up
      on it.

      Not one followed through.

      They just had to listen, not talk to anyone!

      As the saying goes, 90% of winning is just showing up.

      And the crazy thing is they were going to be listening in
      to the exact script that landed Puma, 10 #1 brands plus scores of smaller customers.

      You can lead them to water, but you surely can't make them drink.

      Best,
      Ewen
      I've done this for my main skype group. People who had already invested in my products! At least 60 people in there at any given time...I think 3 or 4 showed up.
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      • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
        Oh, the humanity... the unwashed masses who won't listen in on a sales call!

        What can be done? What ever will we do???

        LOL

        Alex
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        • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
          Originally Posted by Alex Cohen View Post

          Oh, the humanity... the unwashed masses who won't listen in on a sales call!

          What can be done? What ever will we do???

          LOL

          Alex
          Alex, you've taken my case out of context,
          if you were referring to me.

          On the Offline section there was a discussion
          about making phone calls and how some were struggling with it.

          See, people were already discussing it,
          not about another way of getting clients.

          I asked if people would like to listen in,
          one at a time, as I made the calls.

          That's when I got people contacting me.

          Best,
          Ewen
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          • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
            Originally Posted by ewenmack View Post

            Alex, you've taken my case out of context,
            if you were referring to me.
            I wasn't.

            Alex
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  • If you are targeting the C-suite, it often helps to email first with a choice of dates and times to talk. Despite your research, at times the person you first contact is not the decision maker. Add a PS that if they are not the right person to please refer the email to the right contact.

    Don't blow anyone off or dismiss anyone as "only a gatekeeper." When you get hired, you may be interviewing them as part of your research. And the receptionist you miff today will be the junior buyer in your niche in 3 months.
    Signature
    Marketing is not a battle of products. It is a battle of perceptions.
    - Jack Trout
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    • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
      Originally Posted by KingOfContentMarketing View Post

      If you are targeting the C-suite, it often helps to email first with a choice of dates and times to talk. Despite your research, at times the person you first contact is not the decision maker. Add a PS that if they are not the right person to please refer the email to the right contact.
      The best way I've seen to get around that Joe, is to email 5 or 6 who may be the decision maker, and let each one know the others have been contacted.
      Never CC them all.

      This forces the head person to either tell someone to take care of it who is on the list,
      or the decision maker will tell the others he/she will take care of it.

      Now you've flushed out the right person.

      It uses the power hierachy to your favor.

      Best,
      Ewen
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      • Originally Posted by ewenmack View Post

        The best way I've seen to get around that Joe, is to email 5 or 6 who may be the decision maker, and let each one know the others have been contacted.
        Never CC them all.

        This forces the head person to either tell someone to take care of it who is on the list,
        or the decision maker will tell the others he/she will take care of it.

        Now you've flushed out the right person.

        It uses the power hierachy to your favor.

        Best,
        Ewen
        This way also helps the effort on several fronts because many times each of these separate people influence your sales effort is some way, if not directly than as advisors, rock movers, or influencers.
        Signature
        Marketing is not a battle of products. It is a battle of perceptions.
        - Jack Trout
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        • Profile picture of the author splitTest
          damn - Lot of pure gold in this thread.

          Sorry to get off topic, but how do you guys "thank" a post? (As in "the following users say thank you...")

          I'm not seeing any "thank you" button...
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          • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
            Originally Posted by splitTest View Post

            damn - Lot of pure gold in this thread.

            Sorry to get off topic, but how do you guys "thank" a post? (As in "the following users say thank you...")

            I'm not seeing any "thank you" button...
            You'll find the last button at bottom right
            is what you are after.

            Best,
            Ewen
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  • Originally Posted by splitTest View Post

    damn - Lot of pure gold in this thread.

    Sorry to get off topic, but how do you guys "thank" a post? (As in "the following users say thank you...")

    I'm not seeing any "thank you" button...
    Hey, Mr. Split, I think you have to a have certain number of posts (10? 25?) before the thank you button appears.
    Signature
    Marketing is not a battle of products. It is a battle of perceptions.
    - Jack Trout
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    • Profile picture of the author splitTest
      Originally Posted by KingOfContentMarketing View Post

      Hey, Mr. Split, I think you have to a have certain number of posts (10? 25?) before the thank you button appears.
      Got it. Thanks!
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  • Profile picture of the author splitTest
    Btw, Jason, in case you didn't know it, your site is down.

    jasonkanigan.com, right? Doesn't load.
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  • Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post


    Make a list of 20 companies you'd like to promote the products or services of. Things you truly believe in. You can take two days to get this list together.
    Maybe this is a dumb question, but how would you suggest choosing the companies?

    What I'm doing right now, is going through some local magazines and finding ads that I know I could improve.

    What other qualifiers would you suggest to pick those companies? The business size? Whether it's a chain or local?

    I'm assuming it'd be easier to find work if I pick a niche I've already worked in.
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    • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
      Originally Posted by Benjamin Farthing View Post

      Maybe this is a dumb question, but how would you suggest choosing the companies?

      What I'm doing right now, is going through some local magazines and finding ads that I know I could improve.

      What other qualifiers would you suggest to pick those companies? The business size? Whether it's a chain or local?

      I'm assuming it'd be easier to find work if I pick a niche I've already worked in.
      Target how you prefer. This is the great thing about prospecting: you get to choose who YOU want to work with! What size, type, industry, ownership, whatever!

      I do recommend picking one industry and sticking with it for awhile. You'll develop some knowledge of their terminology, and realize you're having the same few conversations over and over again. Gives you a big leg up after a few short weeks. Compare to jumping from field to field...you're never there long enough to learn anything.

      There are only certain things I'll write for. Just finished an email sequence for an investment product. My bid was 3X the average and I was way on the high side. But I wanted the project and it showed. Business, history, some IT--software, usually--food and wine, literature. And unorthodox resumes. Maybe if someone asked me to write about space exploration, or an airplane, I might do it. But that's pretty much about it. I just don't care to write about other things; they don't excite me.

      Weight loss, pickup artist, adult industry, beauty; stuff like that I'm simply not going to write about. Can't get interested in it.

      Knowing your preferences like this helps you out when you're putting together your list. 20 isn't so many; you can google that number in an hour or less. And scrape even more in less time.

      In fact, the more you can narrow it down to--to a field people aren't already saturating--the better it'll be for you. I go into markets where there aren't 200 other writers breathing down your neck. Where the person receiving my call hasn't gotten another call today or maybe even this month from a writer. Can you see how once you start getting some expertise in this field, it becomes so much easier to be instantly credible, stand out and get them saying, "Yeah, I can see you doing that for us"?
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  • Profile picture of the author rockawesome
    Jason,

    I spent the afternoon calling local companies with your script. While none immediately said, "You're hired!", every one asked me to send over samples of past work and said they had upcoming work they'd contact me about.

    Thanks for your great post!
    Signature

    Need a great content strategy, but don't have the time to analyze traffic and create great content yourself? Visit www.rockawesome.net to see professional content marketing plans that cost less than an intern.

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    • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
      Originally Posted by rockawesome View Post

      Jason,

      I spent the afternoon calling local companies with your script. While none immediately said, "You're hired!", every one asked me to send over samples of past work and said they had upcoming work they'd contact me about.

      Thanks for your great post!
      Good for you for taking action. And thanks for returning with the feedback.

      Now. About the sending of samples. Who did you talk to? What role did they have? You want to ask more questions before agreeing to do that (if you do at all; I don't).

      Questions like:

      What are you looking for in the samples?

      How do you go about deciding who will write what for you?

      What kind of a budget do you set aside for different types of projects?

      What's the most common thing you get freelance writers to write?

      Preface questions like these with, "Sure. Before I do that, could I ask you a few questions to find out if we're on the same page?" They aren't going to say No.

      If they give you wishy-washy answers, consider whether you want to send samples over.

      Say their answer to "What are you looking for" is "Oh, we just want to see if you can write." Maybe they're looking for something they can rip off at zero cost.

      You want a definite process in answer to the question about how they hire.

      You want to know they will pay what you desire. If they can't afford you, don't take it any further. Could be a good referral to a friend.

      Once they have given you some answers, you may reply with, "I appreciate you sharing those answers with me. Well, this is how I work." And explain your process. They'll either like it, or they won't. Wouldn't you rather know now?

      FYI lots of people like it when you have a process. They like knowing you do this regularly and have a gameplan.

      So good, you have gotten on the radar of some companies. Great first step. Now ensure that you don't just spin your wheels--sending out samples or proposals--by asking a few simple, probing questions.

      Big Takeway: It was easy and painless, wasn't it.

      You've learned and applied a bit of the prospecting step. Now it's time to do the same with the selling step.

      P.S. Now that you have their email address...imagine what would happen if you got them on a drip marketing campaign, and send them an expert copywriter video with ONE tip in it every 3 or 4 weeks. NOW who do you think they're going to go with?

      Keep it up: call another 20 tomorrow. The payoff is big and it only takes one.
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      • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
        Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

        P.S. Now that you have their email address...imagine what would happen if you got them on a drip marketing campaign, and send them an expert copywriter video with ONE tip in it every 3 or 4 weeks. NOW who do you think they're going to go with?
        That's not a drip... it's a drought!

        Pretty tough to maintain top-of-mind awareness if they only hear from you once every 3 or 4 weeks, that's for sure

        Send two or three the first week. Then one or two a week thereafter.

        Alex

        .
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        • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
          Originally Posted by Alex Cohen View Post

          That's not a drip... it's a drought!

          Pretty tough to maintain top-of-mind awareness if they only hear from you once every 3 or 4 weeks, that's for sure

          Send two or three the first week. Then one or two a week thereafter.

          Alex

          .
          However you like.

          Yours truly got a custom-made senior management role created for me that way. It was plenty for them because no one else was doing it.

          Excuse me for sharing another effective idea.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ronak Shah
    Jason,

    This thread is worth much much more than a few million dollars.

    Thanks for the awesome advice.

    Ronak.
    Signature
    I AM YOUR Direct Response Ninja Kick-Ass Sales Copywriter.

    Now, Here's The REAL DEAL:
    Either I make YOU at least 10 times of what I charge YOU OR
    I'll Write YOUR Sales Copy AGAIN Till YOU Make MUCH MORE Than THAT. Guaranteed*.
    *Terms & Conditions Apply. Email me at ronak[at]ronakshah[dot]name right now.
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  • Profile picture of the author davedev
    Thanks for sharing this tip Jason.

    I stumbled upon this today no more than 2 days into my new copywriting lifestyle. (Still at the altar of Halbert at the moment, copying sales letters by hand).

    I can't wait to put this process into action and deliver a success story to both yourself and this forum.
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    • Profile picture of the author enger
      I don't know if this is worth sharing or not, but let me also reveal another great way to attract clients.

      1. Write and sell a book / ebook.

      2. Sell it online (eg. Through Clickbank) or offline (a friend of mine sold his through display ads).

      3. Offer a free 20 minute consultation as a bonus with the manual.

      4. During the consultation, your lead will seek your advice on how they can improve their ads. At the end, ask them if they'd like you to write the ad for them instead. Around 50% will say yes.

      I've used this strategy before with great success. But I didn't invent it... I got the idea from a couple of friends of mine in Australia who have used this strategy with great results.
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