Dan Kennedy's forward to Seth's book

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I hope this isn't inappropriate to post here and Seth, if you'd rather it not be here I'm happy to delete...

I've started reading The 24 Hour Marketing Miracle by Seth and this part of the forward really stood out for me.


"Successful copywriters respect their audiences. They learn about them not as a collection of demographics and statistics and survey or poll results, but as people, as emotive humans, and as individuals. People do not respond well to uncaring words.

Successful copywriters respect the craft of selling. It's always shocking to me to hear someone voice a desire to be a copywriter but also voice a distaste for selling. It is not coincidental that many of the all-time greatest copywriters and advertising men and women were first door-to-door or at least nose-to-nose salespeople, and came away with profound respect for it. They have a positive attitude about selling.

Successful copywriters respect integrity and authenticity. The great copywriters and great campaigns are not about "putting one over on" a group of prospects. Money can be made that way, but equity can't be created, and jail cells may await. Those of us who do this with great success respect honest passion. We look for reasons to be genuinely enthused about the product or proposition we write about, including the appropriateness of the audience chosen for it."


Quite honestly, before hanging out in this section of the forum I had a poor attitude about salesmen. It had been recommended that going into real estate or insurance or car sales would be a good idea for me, but I always had a bad taste in my mouth. The idea of selling something I didn't believe in to someone that quite probably couldn't afford it, or at least wasn't as good for them as I felt I'd be required to lead them to believe made me feel ill.

The idea of selling always seemed kind of low and sleazy to me. I didn't think it could be something I'd be proud of and figured finding sleep each night would be an effort.

One thing I've found while reading this forum and studying copywriting is that while that may be true for many types of sales, it doesn't need to be. You can actually do this and be proud of what you are doing.

You can feel great about helping a customer find valuable solutions to their problems. You can feel great about helping a business succeed. And most importantly, you can feel proud that you are doing something that while, maybe not world changing, allows you to make a living and sleep well at the same time.

I'd like to thank each of you here for opening my eyes to this new opportunity. Personally, I've had trouble sleeping at night and feeling good about the work I do and I look forward to the day I can leave it behind.

It's not that what I do isn't helpful and valuable to the customer. It's that we often do things that are not customer focused and take advantage of their circumstances.

In fact, I recently stepped down from my management job because I didn't feel good about these aspects of the job. I did this so I could have more time to focus on something that would let me feel good about what I do again.

Thanks for showing me the possibilities.

Tracy
#book #dan #forward #kennedy #seth
  • Profile picture of the author jimbo13
    Originally Posted by TracyBelshee View Post

    It had been recommended that going into real estate or insurance or car sales would be a good idea for me, but I always had a bad taste in my mouth. The idea of selling something I didn't believe in to someone that quite probably couldn't afford it, or at least wasn't as good for them as I felt I'd be required to lead them to believe made me feel ill.

    The idea of selling always seemed kind of low and sleazy to me. I didn't think it could be something I'd be proud of and figured finding sleep each night would be an effort.
    Did you not differentiate between selling a Bentley or Ferrari to someone who clearly does want it and can afford it versus selling an old wreck to an old lady with dementia knowing damn well the car will conk out after 100 miles and be scrapped?

    You find what you want to sell according to your level of conscience.

    If you do that you will never have any wobbles as it were.

    Dan
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    • Profile picture of the author TracyBelshee
      I had, like I believe most non sales people have, a pretty stereotypical view of salespeople.

      Did I think they were all bad? Not at all, but I sure thought most of them were simply trying to increase their commission. Not necessarily a bad thing, but I always had the impression their commission was more important than what was good for me.

      Many areas of sales seem to have these kinds of people and I'd be willing to bet most non sales people have a similar suspicion of those trying to sell them something.

      It's hard to overcome stereotypes.

      But the reading I've done while studying has pretty consistently spoken about finding the right audience for your product. Finding the specific people who really want and need what you have to offer and showing them exactly why it's the best product or service for them.

      That's something I can feel good about.

      Originally Posted by jimbo13 View Post

      Did you not differentiate between selling a Bentley or Ferrari to someone who clearly does want it and can afford it versus selling an old wreck to an old lady with dementia knowing damn well the car will conk out after 100 miles and be scrapped?

      You find what you want to sell according to your level of conscience.

      If you do that you will never have any wobbles as it were.

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


        But the reading I've done while studying has pretty consistently spoken about finding the right audience for your product. Finding the specific people who really want and need what you have to offer and showing them exactly why it's the best product or service for them.

        That's something I can feel good about.
        Tracy,

        Direct response selling is not as "pure and wholesome" as you think.

        When you first start, it's easy to draw a line in the sand between persuasion and manipulation. But you'll be surprised how quickly that line starts to blur.

        Feeling good is just that... a feeling. Whether you feel good helping people solve problems or feel good receiving PayPal transfers (or both), reality has a way of making the feeling fade.

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

          Tracy,

          Direct response selling is not as "pure and wholesome" as you think.

          When you first start, it's easy to draw a line in the sand between persuasion and manipulation. But you'll be surprised how quickly that line starts to blur.

          Feeling good is just that... a feeling. Whether you feel good helping people solve problems or feel good receiving PayPal transfers (or both), reality has a way of making the feeling fade.

          Alex
          Thanks Alex, I have no doubt you are correct.

          But it's a lot better, and has a much better potential than I had initially thought.

          What interests me, aside from the creativity involved, is the fact you can pick and choose the work you do (assuming you freelance). Not so easy in a normal job.

          It's not that I'm particularly a goody two shoes on this, it's just that I can set my own line to be crossed.

          I've done some interesting things working from home in past years. For example, at one time I pretended to be a cam girl, texting dudes on the computer trying to get them in the cam shows. Hilarious I had a LOT of fun with that, but I always knew they were going to get what they wanted in the end. A hot young lady on cam doing things he wished his wife would do. I was just the advertisement that got them there.

          But I drew the line at the type of jobs where the guy thought he was building a relationship with a girl with intent to meet her one day.

          I know there are things out there that are less than ethical (I see some of it in this forum) and it's not something I'd be inclined to try and duplicate. But it's not anywhere near as bad as I'd thought it would be.
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  • Profile picture of the author The Copy Nazi
    Banned
    Wanna know what copywriting is all about? Wanna know how to kill it at this game?

    Copywriting isn't all about selling. Although that's the ultimate outcome. It's not "salesmanship in print". It's not "persuading someone to buy something - using words". It's not manipulating people's minds using voodoo techniques/hypnosis/NLP or any of that crap.

    It's not "asking for the order". It's not ABC - "always be closing". Or AIDA - which personally makes me want to puke.

    Wanna know what writing copy is all about? Wanna know how to kill it at this game?
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    • Profile picture of the author TracyBelshee
      Originally Posted by The Copy Nazi View Post

      Wanna know what copywriting is all about? Wanna know how to kill it at this game?

      Copywriting isn't all about selling. Although that's the ultimate outcome. It's not "salesmanship in print". It's not "persuading someone to buy something - using words". It's not manipulating people's minds using voodoo techniques/hypnosis/NLP or any of that crap.

      It's not "asking for the order". It's not ABC - "always be closing". Or AIDA - which personally makes me want to puke.

      Wanna know what writing copy is all about? Wanna know how to kill it at this game?
      I read this on my phone at work today and thought this was all you were going to say. Had me laughing for a bit.

      Thanks for your comments. It makes sense to me and I'll definitely keep this style (all the posts in this series) in mind as I go along.
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  • Profile picture of the author The Copy Nazi
    Banned
    It's about INSPIRING PEOPLE. Giving them hope. Letting them dream. Letting them aspire.

    If you can do that... yeah - they'll buy your stuff - if it's any good. And they'll buy more of your stuff. They'll become fans. Fans that will follow you for life.
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    • Profile picture of the author perryny
      Originally Posted by The Copy Nazi View Post

      Fans that will follow you for life.
      I'm a fan, Mal. Great to see you!
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    • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
      Originally Posted by The Copy Nazi View Post

      It's about INSPIRING PEOPLE. Giving them hope. Letting them dream. Letting them aspire.

      If you can do that... yeah - they'll buy your stuff - if it's any good. And they'll buy more of your stuff. They'll become fans. Fans that will follow you for life.
      For sure... hope is a powerful feeling.

      Stoke desire + ignite hope + irresistible offer = a successful promotion.

      Alex
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      • Profile picture of the author The Copy Nazi
        Banned
        Originally Posted by Alex Cohen View Post

        For sure... hope is a powerful feeling.

        Stoke desire + ignite hope + irresistible offer = a successful promotion.

        Alex
        I'm not talking about HOPE, dude. Read it again. I'm talking about INSPIRING people. Completely different animal.

        Inspiration: "the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something"

        Hope: "a feeling of expectation and desire for a particular thing to happen".
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        • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
          Originally Posted by The Copy Nazi View Post

          I'm not talking about HOPE, dude. Read it again. I'm talking about INSPIRING people. Completely different animal.

          Inspiration: "the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something"

          Hope: "a feeling of expectation and desire for a particular thing to happen".
          You said,

          It's about INSPIRING PEOPLE. Giving them hope. Letting them dream. Letting them aspire.
          So you're saying hope, dreaming, and aspiring are the results of being inspired. Thanks for the clarification.

          Alex
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  • Profile picture of the author The Copy Nazi
    Banned
    But you watch them pile on. "You're wrong Lambe - copy is all about selling...using words...blah blah blah... I know because I've sold 10 Billion dollars worth of product using my "killer words" blah blah."

    My advice to you? Forget about "selling". Concentrate on inspiring people.
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  • Profile picture of the author The Copy Nazi
    Banned
    BTW I couldn't care less how you take this observation of mine (meaning "you" who's reading this). But some dude will read this...and totally get it. And it will either launch his/her career...or change his/her career - for the better.

    Again - don't come out of the gate hell-bent on "selling". Stimulate your reader/viewer to do something or feel something. If you succeed... they'll hand you their wallet and say "help yourself". Yeah - kinda like that four-letter word LOVE. Remember that? Very powerful emotion. And you're a goner when it happens.

    Inspire them. Make them love you. Forget all about "selling" them. Nobody wants to be sold.
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    • Profile picture of the author shawnlebrun
      Originally Posted by The Copy Nazi View Post

      BTW I couldn't care less how you take this observation of mine (meaning "you" who's reading this). But some dude will read this...and totally get it. And it will either launch his/her career...or change his/her career - for the better.

      Again - don't come out of the gate hell-bent on "selling". Stimulate your reader/viewer to do something or feel something. If you succeed... they'll hand you their wallet and say "help yourself". Yeah - kinda like that four-letter word LOVE. Remember that? Very powerful emotion. And you're a goner when it happens.

      Inspire them. Make them love you. Forget all about "selling" them. Nobody wants to be sold.
      Agreed.

      But you can't do it in a way that makes it seem like you're TRYING too hard to artificially pump them up (the reader)

      Try TOO hard and they'll see right through that.

      This is why I like using stories to paint the before and after picture FOR them... without making it seem like you're trying to sell.

      Simply allow your "before and after" story to do the selling for you... so the reader can see themselves in the staring role of that mental movie..

      Amateur writers will use every adjective in the book to make it APPEAR their copy is inspiring and creating hope... but it backfires.

      "This is so amazing, this is so incredible, this is absolutely stunning and you'll be the happiest person in the world... this will solve all of your problems"

      Rubbish.

      You can inspire people and create hope almost subliminally... by just painting a mental movie for them, of what the product and service can do.

      Hell, we as people simply want to move away from pain and towards happiness/pleasure... for the most part.

      So like Mal said... if you can show your reader that you can make their lives better, bring hope, inspire, etc.. they will follow.

      But try TOO hard... and make it TOO obvious by writing fluff and filler that makes it seem like you're manipulating the reader... and it will backfire.
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      • Profile picture of the author JohnRussell
        Originally Posted by shawnlebrun View Post

        But try TOO hard... and make it TOO obvious by writing fluff and filler that makes it seem like you're manipulating the reader... and it will backfire.
        Very true.

        The parallel in face-to-face sales is saying:

        "This is the greatest whizbang invention ever - and it's going to be great for you. Trust me."
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  • Profile picture of the author JohnRussell
    Would you consider good 'fear' promos also inspirational?

    I suppose they inspire people to take action.

    One promo inspires a guy to lose weight so he can look good, feel good etc. Another inspires a guy to lose weight so he can live long enough to make sure his family is looked after.

    I just took your use of the word 'inspiration' to have a positive spin. Is that how you meant it?

    Either way, I think successful salespeople do the same.
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  • This might help.

    A full definition of the word 'Inspire"

    Inspire

    verb

    1 the landscape inspired him to write: stimulate, motivate, encourage, influence, rouse, move, stir, energize, galvanize, incite; animate, fire, excite, spark, inspirit, incentivize, affect.

    2 the film inspired a musical: give rise to, lead to, bring about, cause, prompt, spawn, engender; literary beget.

    3 Charles inspired awe in her: arouse, awaken, prompt, induce, ignite, trigger, kindle, produce, bring out; literary enkindle.


    Steve
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  • Here's a piece of a formula I recently used for a "we don't want to be a hard sell" client.

    It worked like a dream.

    We're in business because (we can and we will solve the problem you have - we had it too)

    But before you even think about buying it (let us prove to you why it works)

    (Then prove it beyond a shadow of a doubt)


    Steve
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    • Profile picture of the author Rhino99
      Tracy, you should check out 'The Secret of Selling Anything' by Harry Browne. Based on his own door to door sales experience, it explains how introverts can be the best salesmen because they listen to the customer to find out their motivation (or pain) before presenting them with the answer. Essentially, he says you cant trick anyone into buying anything unless they feel it in their gut that what you're saying is true. This book and a few other things I've been hearing (including a dude starting a new branding agency based on selling love rather than fear) have certainly changed my perspective. It's ethical sales all the way for me from now on. But then I'm still a (relatively) young buck, and money can do strange things to people.

      I remember writing a sales page for an eBook claiming it was all you needed to become a practicing hypnotherapist. I felt a bit uncomfortable about that one. Hope the client took my advice and slapped a huge disclaimer on the bottom.
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  • Profile picture of the author sethczerepak
    Damn, looks like I missed one hell of a party.

    This subject, in my opinion, is the most crucial subject in selling -- maybe the most crucial subject in the whole realm of entrepreneurship.

    Of all the sales people and marketers I’ve worked with, I believe the biggest difference between those who succeed and those who fail has to do with the way they view selling. People who “don’t like it,” don’t do well at all. At best, they reach a certain level ($30 to $50k a year mark, if they’re fortunate), but they can’t break past that.

    Of course, they’ll burn up their time and money on sales training and copywriting products, not realizing that the real obstacle is their attitude. Most of them, ironically, become consumers and victims of marketing. Here’s something to think about…

    1% of the people in this world make 99% of the money. Ask 100 people how they feel about selling, and I bet 99 of them will say they hate it. Yet, most of those 99 LOVE to buy things and are probably living pay check to pay check because of it.

    Meanwhile, 1 out of the 100 will love selling.

    This is no coincidence -- who do you think the other 99% are buying FROM anyway?
    Hell, forget all that Law of Attraction Business. As far as I’m concerned THIS ^ is what separates the 99% from the 1%. Which side would YOU rather be on?

    Again, it’s all about your ATTITUDE towards sales.

    Frankly, I believe anyone who claims to hate or dislike selling doesn’t understand what selling really is. It’s not about strong arming and persuasion. It’s about giving life to their hopes and their dreams. Hell, the word “inspiration” actually means to “breathe life into.” If you can do that, you can sell…and if once you start seeing sales as “CPR” for people’s hopes and dreams, your whole life will change.

    But that’s not all…

    You’ll also have the privilege of becoming an agent of positive change to EVERYONE who you “sell” to. Everyone has dreams and hopes. The problem is that without inspiration, hopes and dreams die a slow and painful death. Whether because of failures, disappointments, dishonest business deals or just the hard knocks of life, most people have reserved themselves to putting their hopes on life support.

    Hope is great. But alone, it’s about as frail as a naked scrotum in a room full of steel-toed boots. Couple hard knocks that hope crawls away into a corner to lick its wounds, eventually, it becomes denial. Bottom line, hope alone isn’t much…it has to be turned into faith.

    That’s what inspiration does.

    It turns hope into action, and without action, hope is dead.

    Heck, that's even biblical, Hebrews 11: 1…James Chapter 2. Dan Kennedy also has an entire chapter dedicated to this in his “No BS Wealth Attraction” book (which EVERYONE needs to read BTW).

    But as a sales person, you step in the customer’s life when their hopes are rotting away on a hospital bed, sucking on a feeding tube and nursing bed sores the size of cantaloupes. Meanwhile, the customer has become distracted with their work a day life, and occasionally comes in during “visitor hours,” to mourn over their frail hopes…wondering if they should just pull the plug and put themselves and their hopes out of their misery.

    YOU get to be the one who walks into the room in flowing white robes and offers the cure.
    I’ll take it.

    Sure, the general consensus is that sales people are slimy douchebags who would steal the pennies off of a dead man’s eyes. But in my opinion, if YOU have the power to revive that hope, you’re a douchebag if you DON’T promote your product with all the passion, gusto and intensity you can muster.

    While some prospects will call you “pushy,” those who DO buy from you will be grateful.

    Hell, I can’t tell you how many people have thanked ME after writing a check for several thousand dollars. Some sales people have a hard time understanding that. But let’s be honest…who should really be thanking who? The customer who got to see their hopes resurrected? Or the person who laid their hands on the customers dreams and brought them back from the brink of death?

    Bottom line, if you secretly suspect that you’re getting a better deal than your customer, you’re either selling the wrong product OR your attitude about selling is based on faulty assumptions.

    Fix it.

    Your customers will thank you.

    So will your bank account.
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    • Profile picture of the author TracyBelshee
      I've downloaded Harry Browne's book and will look for Dan Kennedy's as well. Thanks for the recommendations, I definitely want reading material that promotes this mindset.

      When I think of a style I'd like to work with, it runs a bit sarcastic, a bit in your face humorous but always completely honest as to what the results will be.

      I keep reading humor, etc. isn't good for this type of business, so I'll keep that in mind. But I don't want to be to businessy serious all the time either. Just honest.

      Thanks again everyone.
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      • Profile picture of the author sethczerepak
        Originally Posted by TracyBelshee View Post

        I've downloaded Harry Browne's book and will look for Dan Kennedy's as well. Thanks for the recommendations, I definitely want reading material that promotes this mindset.

        When I think of a style I'd like to work with, it runs a bit sarcastic, a bit in your face humorous but always completely honest as to what the results will be.

        I keep reading humor, etc. isn't good for this type of business, so I'll keep that in mind. But I don't want to be to businessy serious all the time either. Just honest.

        Thanks again everyone.
        Humor is effective when you use it right

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  • Profile picture of the author TracyBelshee
    Thanks Seth, the tools in that video are going to come in handy
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