Are any of you put off when a sales letter doesn't have proper grammatical structure?

43 replies
I've read through a lot of sales letters and one - of the many - things that automatically discounts the ad copy in my opinion is improper spelling and grammar. If somebody makes 10,000 dollars a day with this 'easy' system then couldn't they have checked for spelling and grammar mistakes or better yet hired somebody with a small percentage of their 10k a day to actually read over their ad copy?

I'm just wondering if anybody else feels the same way I do. I'm no Shakespeare but I have my outsourced team review EVERY piece of ad copy before it goes out.
#grammatical #letter #proper #put #sales #structure
  • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
    Banned
    [DELETED]
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1952686].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author KenJ
      I am writing this carefully.

      I can forgive simple errors. We all make them. What I find harder to take is bad spelling and gratuitous foul language.

      kenj
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1952702].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author whateverpedia
      Originally Posted by Alexa Smith View Post

      Actually, even in the realm of clear-cut "mistakes" there are some things that don't annoy me at all, just because I'm so used to them. Almost everyone will write "None of them have worked out well" rather than the correct "None of them has worked out well". You just have to accept (or learn to ignore) these things in other people's sales letters, I think.
      Should of/could of/would of instead of should have/could have/would have is another one I see a lot.

      Two common spoken gaffes are ek cetera instead of et cetera, and asterix instead of asterisk.

      It depends on the person as to whether I get annoyed with these errors. If they're trying to portray thenselves as clever, then they do irk. If it's just your averge guy or gal, then c'est la vie.
      Signature
      Why do garden gnomes smell so bad?
      So that blind people can hate them as well.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953459].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Rod Cortez
        Minor mistakes that do not affect the flow of the sales letter do not bother me. Mistakes that do, do bother me. Having written that, I agree with Robert Puddy. In terms of testing many of our sales letters I could not believe some of the split-test conversions we were getting where some of the grammar and spelling errors actually increased conversions. We now test this in ALL our sales letter.

        I'm not talking about 10 or 20 visitors per day, I'm talking about thousands. Some people put misspellings in their sales letters on purpose. I know we do.

        RoD
        Signature
        "Your personal philosophy is the greatest determining factor in how your life works out."
        - Jim Rohn
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953923].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author freudianslip27
    It doesn't annoy me unless it is really blatant. Many salesletters are written as if you were talking to a person, and that can include some sketchy grammar. I don't mind minor grammar mistakes. Inconsistencies and misrepresentation? That stuff I hate!

    Matt
    Signature

    WarriorForum Rules!

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1952696].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Robert Puddy
    Originally Posted by LiamMcIvorMartin View Post

    I've read through a lot of sales letters and one - of the many - things that automatically discounts the ad copy in my opinion is improper spelling and grammar. If somebody makes 10,000 dollars a day with this 'easy' system then couldn't they have checked for spelling and grammar mistakes or better yet hired somebody with a small percentage of their 10k a day to actually read over their ad copy?

    I'm just wondering if anybody else feels the same way I do. I'm no Shakespeare but I have my outsourced team review EVERY piece of ad copy before it goes out.
    I once had a proof reader go through a sales letter that was converting at 15%, in the vain hope that i could improve on that

    After they had been through it and corrected every grammar and small spelling mistake, it converted at 3%

    I very quickly put the bad grammar back in the sales letter
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1952777].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author LiamMcIvorMartin
      Originally Posted by Robert Puddy View Post

      I once had a proof reader go through a sales letter that was converting at 15%, in the vain hope that i could improve on that

      After they had been through it and corrected every grammar and small spelling mistake, it converted at 3%

      I very quickly put the bad grammar back in the sales letter
      That is incredibly interesting, any way would could look at the sample?

      I usually spend DAYS on my ad copy, researching, writing, revising all the content. I then send that copy to friends and ask them to rip it apart (although now I think I might also post my stuff on this forum as well!). Only after all that do I send it to my team to have it reviewed for sentence structures, grammar and spelling.
      Signature

      In Times Of Change, Learners Inherit The Earth

      Liam McIvor Martin

      Outsourced Facebook Marketing

      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1952864].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author grayambition
      Originally Posted by Robert Puddy View Post

      I once had a proof reader go through a sales letter that was converting at 15%, in the vain hope that i could improve on that

      After they had been through it and corrected every grammar and small spelling mistake, it converted at 3%

      I very quickly put the bad grammar back in the sales letter
      I'd also be very interested in seeing the "before and after" on this copy.

      With that large a difference in the conversion rate, I'd be willing to bet that your proofreader took some editorial liberties that affected the flavor of your text.

      A good proofreader knows the difference between the "annoying" bad grammar that Alexa talked about and colloquialisms and intentional bad grammar that are your own personal style. An unimaginative and rigid proofreader who refuses to allow split infinitives, and will never end a sentence with a preposition or start one with a conjunction is a proofreader up with which I would not put and can easily suck the life out of your copy.

      It's hard for me to understand how simply correcting a few grammatical errors could have such a huge effect on conversions unless you allowed the proofreader to delete your personality along with the errors.

      If I see, for example, "you ain't seen nuthin' yet," it's clear that's an intentional colloquialism and I wouldn't touch it. On the other hand, correcting those ubiquitous their|there|they're, to|too|two, or affect|effect errors should only have the effect of making your text more readable.
      Signature

      Jan Weingarten
      Substitute "damn" every time you're inclined to write "very"; your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be. ~Mark Twain

      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953229].message }}
      • Originally Posted by grayambition View Post

        I'd also be very interested in seeing the "before and after" on this copy.

        With that large a difference in the conversion rate, I'd be willing to bet that your proofreader took some editorial liberties that affected the flavor of your text.

        A good proofreader knows the difference between the "annoying" bad grammar that Alexa talked about and colloquialisms and intentional bad grammar that are your own personal style. An unimaginative and rigid proofreader who refuses to allow split infinitives, and will never end a sentence with a preposition or start one with a conjunction is a proofreader up with which I would not put and can easily suck the life out of your copy.

        It's hard for me to understand how simply correcting a few grammatical errors could have such a huge effect on conversions unless you allowed the proofreader to delete your personality along with the errors.

        If I see, for example, "you ain't seen nuthin' yet," it's clear that's an intentional colloquialism and I wouldn't touch it. On the other hand, correcting those ubiquitous their|there|they're, to|too|two, or affect|effect errors should only have the effect of making your text more readable.
        I could not agree more. I think that a lot of "proofreaders or copy editors" concentrate too much on the proper use of the language without giving much room for the jargon that CAN make a sale. I think as writers and proofreaders we have to know the fine line that divides a SALES copy from an article and the misuse or misspelling of words. For example, I often get Ads that require proofing and will have words or slang like: Yeah, Nah, Gonna, Wanna, and so on. I have to put the sentence in context and analyze it. If my client is hoping to be friendly and come across as an amicable and "down to earth" businessman, then by gosh almighty, leave the copy AS IS.

        However, as you mentioned above, not knowing the difference between to-two-too, or there-their-they're, or even confusing the meaning of effect and affect really bugs me. If unsure, use a dictionary or a thesaurus.:rolleyes:
        Signature
        Content Article Writer
        Rich Content Articles
        SEO Article Writing
        Article Writer For Hire
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953869].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Jeremy Kelsall
      Originally Posted by Robert Puddy View Post

      I once had a proof reader go through a sales letter that was converting at 15%, in the vain hope that i could improve on that

      After they had been through it and corrected every grammar and small spelling mistake, it converted at 3%

      I very quickly put the bad grammar back in the sales letter
      Something very similar happened to me

      We had a membership site that we owned and were promoting it. My own copy was converting at almost 11%. My grammar, spelling, and use of punctuation is horrible, I'll admit that, but it was converting.

      Someone here from the forum, a copy guy emailed us with all of the errors etc and gave us a bid to go through and check everything, put punctuation in the right place, correct spelling, etc...

      When he was done, and we put the revised copy in place of my old copy, the conversions fell to under 5%. So, now I stick to whatever my 9th grade education can produce, and leave perfection to other people

      OP - I do know what you're talking about, I personally don't pay very close attention to spelling, grammar, punctuation, etc...but, yesterday I read a sales letter from a BIG LAUNCH and there was a misspelling in just about every single block of text, which I found very annoying.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953260].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Raydal
      Originally Posted by Robert Puddy View Post

      I once had a proof reader go through a sales letter that was converting at 15%, in the vain hope that i could improve on that

      After they had been through it and corrected every grammar and small spelling mistake, it converted at 3%

      I very quickly put the bad grammar back in the sales letter
      Amen! Amen! Amen!

      What people fail to realize is that "mistakes" engages the reader
      on an EMOTIONAL level. When you read a piece and everything
      is "perfect" then it seems less than human because we are not
      perfect.

      Mistakes make your letter appear as though it was written by a
      human being and not spit out by a machine.

      I love when prospects email me and point out mistakes in my copy
      because this means that they read the letter very carefully!

      I remember Rich Shefren reporting how one video that most people
      votes as "bad" was higher converting than the smooth professional
      video.

      If everything about your letter is perfect then it is easier to pass
      over because nothing stands out. You need bumps in the road to
      keep people's attention.

      Ugly letters still sell--mistakes included.

      -Ray Edwards
      Signature
      The most powerful and concentrated copywriting training online today bar none! Autoresponder Writing Email SECRETS
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953327].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author EvcRo
    I'm not a good english speaker/writer so that's why probably i don't care at all about grammar if i understand what the message wants to tell.

    From IM area point of view i think it's ok. But for other niches, grammar is very important imo.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1952780].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Power and Wealth
    Doesn't annoy me at all, I think it's hilarious. The worse it is, the better!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1952836].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    I don't under stand waht that probl'm is? Hows come no body ain't done been explane these miss takes and airers to them waht makes um so they can fix um? I no you ain't talking a bout me cuz eye never make inny miss steaks cuz I'm are a good righter. Butt I feel sorry for them waht duz be cuz they probubbly don't not no they am knot good at spelling and grammer.


    PS - It doesn't bother me. Life is too short to sweat over other people's mistakes.
    Signature

    Just when you think you've got it all figured out, someone changes the rules.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953266].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author stealthmayhem
      Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post

      I don't under stand waht that probl'm is? Hows come no body ain't done been explane these miss takes and airers to them waht makes um so they can fix um? I no you ain't talking a bout me cuz eye never make inny miss steaks cuz I'm are a good righter. Butt I feel sorry for them waht duz be cuz they probubbly don't not no they am knot good at spelling and grammer.


      PS - It doesn't bother me. Life is too short to sweat over other people's mistakes.
      That was just about unreadable. It took me over a minute to figure out what it was you were trying to convey.
      Signature

      Light a Fire under Your Downline!!!!

      $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953954].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Laura B
        Originally Posted by Robert Puddy View Post

        I once had a proof reader go through a sales letter that was converting at 15%, in the vain hope that i could improve on that

        After they had been through it and corrected every grammar and small spelling mistake, it converted at 3%

        I very quickly put the bad grammar back in the sales letter
        Originally Posted by Jeremy Kelsall View Post

        Something very similar happened to me

        We had a membership site that we owned and were promoting it. My own copy was converting at almost 11%. My grammar, spelling, and use of punctuation is horrible, I'll admit that, but it was converting.

        Someone here from the forum, a copy guy emailed us with all of the errors etc and gave us a bid to go through and check everything, put punctuation in the right place, correct spelling, etc...

        When he was done, and we put the revised copy in place of my old copy, the conversions fell to under 5%.
        This is very depressing.

        But then, I am a spelling/grammar/punctuation snob. I don't object in the least to the "creative" grammar being discussed that shows personality, but other than that, I think it's sad that errors sell better than correct copy.
        Signature
        Free ebook: Affiliate Marketing: Just the FAQs
        Affiliate marketing for brand spankin' newbies
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1954006].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
        Originally Posted by stealthmayhem View Post

        That was just about unreadable. It took me over a minute to figure out what it was you were trying to convey.
        Thanks! Glad I could entertain you. I wonder though . . . while you were figuring out what I was trying to convey, did you figure out that first portion of the post was intentionally structured as it was in order to provide a modicum of amusement?

        As long as I'm back in this thread, Paul Myers has an amusing ebook about grammar cops that those interested in this topic might want to read. I can't recall the name of it off the top of my head, nor off the side of my head for that matter, but maybe someone else can help out with that. It's got something to do with a little animal, it's just not coming to me.
        Signature

        Just when you think you've got it all figured out, someone changes the rules.

        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1954024].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author grayambition
          Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post


          As long as I'm back in this thread, Paul Myers has an amusing ebook about grammar cops that those interested in this topic might want to read. I can't recall the name of it off the top of my head, nor off the side of my head for that matter, but maybe someone else can help out with that. It's got something to do with a little animal, it's just not coming to me.
          The Wombat Report: What wombats can teach you about copywriting

          It's totally cool and entertaining... and right on (grammar can, indeed, "get in the way." Wombat pic included (they sure are ugly little critters).
          Signature

          Jan Weingarten
          Substitute "damn" every time you're inclined to write "very"; your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be. ~Mark Twain

          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1954063].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author mr2monster
    The only things that bother me really are when people confuse:

    your/you're
    their/there/they're
    affect/effect
    seems/seams
    etc.

    Other than that, unless it's just impossible to understand, it doesn't much bother me.

    Most of the time, I've found that sales pages written like we speak (i.e. incorrect grammar) convert better anyway. If we spoke like we are supposed to write, we'd all sound like uppity snobs. haha.

    When you're trying to relate, though, writing like you speak seems to work better.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953380].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Kelly Verge
    And sentence fragments. They can help draw the reader through your copy.

    The closer your writing gets to the dialog in your reader's head, the more effective it will be. Regardless of grammar.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953425].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Like others have noted, I can handle "creative grammar and spelling" as long as they contribute to the flow of what I'm reading. Sentence fragments. Split infinitives. Even the occasionally dangling participle, if it's attractive...

      The things that put me off are the ones that break up that flow, distract me, or suck the life out of the message. And, yes, I believe too many careless errors can suck the life from a letter the same way that textbook grammar can.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953470].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author John Durham
    I'm encouraged by the existence of such sales letters personally.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953497].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author timelessreader
      What's the deal with losing vs. loosing?

      I used to never see this mistake and now it's as if in the last 5 years everyone forgot how to spell "losing". It's definitely weird and always makes me pause. I've seen it in a lot of sales copy as well.

      there/their/they're and your/you're have always been around but this one needs to be curbed before it gets out of hand. They're completely different words and pronounced differently.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953756].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
        Originally Posted by timelessreader View Post

        What's the deal with losing vs. loosing?

        I used to never see this mistake and now it's as if in the last 5 years everyone forgot how to spell "losing".
        I think people are "loosing" their minds.
        Signature

        Just when you think you've got it all figured out, someone changes the rules.

        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953788].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author grayambition
          Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post

          I think people are "loosing" their minds.
          Actually Dennis, most of them want to loose weight, it seems. According to 43things.com, "4,726 people want to loose weight." The thread includes such gems as:

          "Ok so I have 6 stone to loose!!!"

          "i have to loose weight and i m gonna take it seriously from now on"

          "LOOSING WEIGHT IS REALLY EASY I HAVE FOUND SOME PRODUCTS THAT HAVE HELP ME LOOSE WEIGHT & KEEP IT OFF."

          "how to loose 20 pounds for 3 weeks"

          ...and too many more to list, all from different people.

          Hey, this is almost as much fun as the blog spam thread.

          Come to think of it, I have quite a bit of loose weight myself. :rolleyes:
          Signature

          Jan Weingarten
          Substitute "damn" every time you're inclined to write "very"; your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be. ~Mark Twain

          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953859].message }}
          • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
            Originally Posted by grayambition View Post


            "Ok so I have 6 stone to loose!!!"
            Um...you sure that one was about kidney stones instead of weight?
            Signature

            Just when you think you've got it all figured out, someone changes the rules.

            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953894].message }}
            • Profile picture of the author grayambition
              Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post

              Um...you sure that one was about kidney stones instead of weight?
              Hmmm, that may be so... but if that's the case, upon what or whom do they intend to loose the stones after they lose them?
              Signature

              Jan Weingarten
              Substitute "damn" every time you're inclined to write "very"; your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be. ~Mark Twain

              {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953908].message }}
              • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
                Originally Posted by grayambition View Post

                Hmmm, that may be so... but if that's the case, upon what or whom do they intend to loose the stones after they lose them?
                Don't ask!

                There are things in life you're just better off not knowing.
                Signature

                Just when you think you've got it all figured out, someone changes the rules.

                {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953924].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author heavyjay
        That one, and payed vs. paid are the two that really bother me.

        Originally Posted by timelessreader View Post

        What's the deal with losing vs. loosing?

        I used to never see this mistake and now it's as if in the last 5 years everyone forgot how to spell "losing". It's definitely weird and always makes me pause. I've seen it in a lot of sales copy as well.

        there/their/they're and your/you're have always been around but this one needs to be curbed before it gets out of hand. They're completely different words and pronounced differently.
        Signature
        My New Blog - isn't much on it and your critique is more than welcome!
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1954099].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author midasAu
          I notice mistakes but they are less important to me these days. My command of the written word was never perfect and the constant use of modern technology such as text messaging and IM definitely doesn't help.

          When I first used IM to communicate with outsourced contractors I was very conscious of every mistake but soon realized that even a message full of mistakes still achieved exactly what we intended, which was to successfully work together. I quickly relaxed and now find myself much more tolerant of mistakes in all forms of the written word.

          I found this an interesting study conducted by Cambridge University :

          Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.

          Or rather...

          According to a researcher (sic) at Cambridge University, it doesn't matter in what order the letters in a word are, the only important thing is that the first and last letter be at the right place. The rest can be a total mess and you can still read it without problem. This is because the human mind does not read every letter by itself but the word as a whole.

          I am not for one minute suggesting that grammar and spelling are not important but for me it depends on what I am wanting to achieve. If it is just to portray a simple message (eg quick forum post) I think there is room for a few errors but when it comes to a formal letter or sales letter, personally I feel compelled to make every effort to be correct.

          In summary, no incorrect grammar and spelling do not generally worry me.
          Signature

          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1954278].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Sarah Russell
    It's definitely something I notice - I mean, it's hard not to after spending a few hours a day writing and editing web articles...

    But put off? Not necessarily. I try to keep in mind that a) some readers will relate more to that style of writing and b) not everyone in IM speaks English as a first language. If the information is good, I don't really care how you sell it.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953722].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Loren Woirhaye
    This is exactly the sort of barbarians at the gate issue
    pertaining to which we writers should band together
    and raise our collective voices:

    "This is exactly the sort of thing up with which we shall not put!"
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953882].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author stealthmayhem
    I could not agree more. I am not a complete grammar Nazi, but how is someone going to come across as intelligent and act as an expert on a subject if the proper spelling and sentence structure is not in place. As a side note, when did lose(no longer possessing, or misplacing) become loose(not tight fitting)?
    Signature

    Light a Fire under Your Downline!!!!

    $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1953946].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    Yes, The Wombat Report, thanks folks, especially for linking to it.
    Signature

    Just when you think you've got it all figured out, someone changes the rules.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1954070].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author mikemcmillan
    Language is such a fluid thing. It bobs and weaves through the fluxing changes of society and culture. Rules change as time goes by. The split infinite thingie came from the fact that in Latin the infinitive was built in with the verb form itself so infinitives could not be split. Get on with it. In the Middle Ages it made sense; Today it is passe. And good writers begin sentences with conjunctions all the time, just as I did (not to imply I'm a good writer though).

    When I do live writing seminars I begin by handing out a page which was written by Bennie "Duke" Sanchez. It is titled Duke Daddy's Night Out. I explain that when I was teaching I gave the assignment to students to write a story about some far off place they would like to visit. Bennie's story begins...
    riverrun, past Eve and Adam's, from swerve of shore to bend of bay, brings us by a commodius vicus of recirculation back to Howth Castle and Environs. Sir Tristram, violer d'amores, fr'over the short sea, had passencore rearrived from North Armorica on this side the scraggy isthmus of Europe Minor to wielderfight his penisolate war: nor had topsawyer's rocks by the stream Oconee exaggerated themselse to Laurens County's gorgios while they went doublin their mumper all the time: nor avoice from afire bellowsed mishe mishe to tauftauf thuartpeatrick: not yet, though venissoon after, had a kidscad buttended a bland old isaac: not yet, though all's fair in vanessy, were sosie sesthers wroth with twone nathandjoe. Rot a peck of pa's malt had Jhem or Shen brewed by arclight and rory end to the regginbrow was to be seen ringsome on the aquaface . . .
    I then ask the people (who are all educators) to write a comment and grade Bennie's paper. I get comments such as: What drug were you on when you wrote this? Have your parents contact me. It is obvious you have learned nothing about composition during the entire semester. See me after class!

    So after everyone has decided that this is one of the worst examples of writing they have ever seen, I pull out a copy of Finnegans Wake and ask one of the teachers to begin reading to the rest of the attendees. They begin,

    riverrun, past Eve and Adam's, from swerve of shore to bend of bay, brings us by a commodius vicus of recirculation back to Howth Castle...

    Good god almighty! This piece of trash wasn't written by Bennie "Duke" Sanchez, it was written by James Joyce--one of the most influential literary geniuses of the 20th century.

    So, while every teacher in attendance has imaginatively confined "Bennie" to the dummy corner of the room, head down--not allowed to interact with the rest of the students--it turns out that Bennie (Joyce) had transcended the contemporary rules of grammar, usage, syntax, spelling, and punctuation in favor of his own brand of creative writing.

    It turns out we put the wrong person in the dummy room ! There is a huge difference between knowledge and learning. Bennie may not have expressed the fact that he had the correct "knowledge" but that by no means is an indicator that he has not learned. He transcended what was taught!

    Teachers confuse knowledge and learning in every classroom in America--every day of the year. They cannot test learning accurately so they make wild leaps of illogic--they make inferences about student learning based upon student performance as indicated by easy to test knowledge and facts. Such inferences are not at all good measures of genuine learning.

    I'm not suggesting we abandon all of the rules of good writing. Not at all. I happen to be very hesitant about buying products from sales pages which are poorly written. However, what it really comes down to is how well your copy is converting. It's about split testing. If writing in a more informal, colloquial form converts--then go with it. This is a business and business is about making money.

    I've heard Jeremy K. mention several times that he has a 9th grade education. So you don't have a piece of paper that says you're a genius! Big freakin' deal. For the most part, success in public schools is a matter of sit down, shut up, and do as you're told. Really! The "best" students do those things well and are rewarded accordingly.

    If you've got a great smile, good handwriting, and can sit still for an hour at a time--you'll probably do quite well in a factory-modeled public school setting. But those qualities (sit down, shut up, and do as you're told) are not at all the qualities that make for a great entrepreneur--indeed, they are exactly the opposite of what is needed.

    Again, if you can write copy that converts and produce product that delivers--you can make it in this business whatever your level of eduction. End of lecture. Go sit in the dummy corner of the class. You'll probably be in better company than you would find in the front row anyway!
    --Mike



    Signature

    I'll help you create a reputation-building evergreen product in any niche and launch it successfully!
    Check it out here.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1954531].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    Wow, Mike - great post! You had me hooked with the first two sentences.

    Kind of makes my "Life is too short to sweat over other people's mistakes." comment look a little lame though. I might have to copy your post and edit mine and paste your comment in place of mine so it looks like you copied me.
    Signature

    Just when you think you've got it all figured out, someone changes the rules.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1954584].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author mikemcmillan
      Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post

      Wow, Mike - great post! You had me hooked with the first two sentences.

      Kind of makes my "Life is too short to sweat over other people's mistakes." comment look a little lame though. I might have to copy your post and edit mine and paste your comment in place of mine so it looks like you copied me.
      Lame? Hardly. Uh, as you may remember Dennis, I asked your permission to post one of your WF posts on my blog not long ago. I don't mind stealing from the best.

      Hey, get that dog of your's a haircut--he's starting to look like me .
      Signature

      I'll help you create a reputation-building evergreen product in any niche and launch it successfully!
      Check it out here.

      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1954622].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
        Originally Posted by mikemcmillan View Post

        Lame? Hardly. Uh, as you may remember Dennis, I asked your permission to post one of your WF posts on my blog not long ago. I don't mind stealing from the best.

        Hey, get that dog of your's a haircut--he's starting to look like me .
        Oh...don't mention a haircut for that poor pooch. My wife is a hair stylist, and she also cuts our dog's hair. The last time she got a hair cut the pup went to lick her hand just as she was trimming the hair around her mouth. Her tongue got cut, and that led to an imbalance internally, resulting in diarrhea and vomiting and about $500 in vet bills. She's just now feeling good again after being sick for about 5-6 days.

        Speaking of looking like you, I have some pics of me from years ago that would match up pretty good for hair length.
        Signature

        Just when you think you've got it all figured out, someone changes the rules.

        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1954643].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Jon G
    Yeah I agree to an extent, but sometimes improper grammar comes from a standpoint of "talking" to the prospective visitor.

    The most important thing in writing sales copy is connecting with your visitor and if that requires bending grammar and spelling to melt to that brand of visitor then bend away my friend. However, if used in the wrong scenario it just looks plain lazy and careless so I would have to say it totally depends on the situation.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1954651].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Robert Puddy
    while i dont advocate huge spelling mistakes all over the adcopy, it doesnt matter that much either if you use their instead of there, most people read past mistakes like that

    Its just that the grammar and spelling cops are the most vocal thats all.

    Language isnt static, its fluid, changes with the times.

    Look at the difference between english and american spelling

    tire instead of tyre,
    color instead of colour

    Robert

    PS: for those that asked I dont have the proof read copy of that sales letter i deleted it
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1955282].message }}

Trending Topics