The $64,000 self-promotion letter

Most people who get into the freelance copywriting business do so because they love to write compelling copy. They seldom do it because they want to spend time finding clients.

However, to survive as a freelancer, you DO have to find clients. It’s just part of the profession.

The Freelance Copywriter's $64,000 Direct Mail Self-Promotion PackageRecently, I ran across a unique resource called “The Freelance Copywriter’s $64,000 Direct Mail Self-Promotion Package.” It’s written by Pete Savage, a copywriter in Canada.

Now I’ve been around a while and have seen all sorts of e-books and reports that promise to give you the “secret” for success in this business. Most, frankly, are full of tripe and nonsense from people who don’t actually earn a living as a copywriter.

Pete’s book is different. For one thing, Pete really does earn a living writing copy. For another, it’s very specific and practical. It’s not just “how-to,” it’s “here’s exactly how-to.” Read more

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Freelance success begins with mindset

Henry Ford is quoted as saying, “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – either way you’re right.”

It’s one of those quotes that make you think before you understand what it means. But when you finally get it, it’s one of those “Ah ha!” moments.

What Ford was talking about was “mindset.” It’s the idea that the way you think affects the way you act and, therefore, what you are able to accomplish. This is directly related to being a freelance copywriter or designer.

If you think you can’t make much money as a freelancer, you won’t. If you think no one will believe in your skills, they won’t. If you think you can’t leave your job because you’re just not good enough to make it on your own, then you’ll never even try.

Perception is reality. Read more

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Be bossy in your copy!

If you want to improve your copywriting, read this article now.

I’m going to give you one of the most powerful secrets for making your words work harder in any promotion. And it’s about as simple as copywriting tips get. Ready?

Tell people what to do.

That’s it.

I told you it was simple. But it works. You see, for the most part, people do what you tell them to do. You can’t make people do what they don’t want to do, but if the request is reasonable they’ll comply.

Do a little experiment. At the grocery store, walk up to someone and tell them to hand you something off the shelf. “Excuse me, sir. Hand me that box of Cheerios.” You can soften it if you like. “Excuse me, sir. Will you hand me that box of Cheerios?”

Every now and then, you’ll get a cantacerous old fart who will tell you to “buzz off,” but most of the time the person will do what you tell them to do. People respond to commands. Read more

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How to add oomph to your offer

Offers are the heart of direct marketing. So if you want a powerful way to improve response to any direct advertisement, look at your offer.

That’s the gist of a recent article I wrote for Target Marketing called Energize Your Offer.

I determined a long time ago that there are 3 essential elements of any direct response ad. You must:

1. Make an offer.
2. Provide sufficient information for acceptance of the offer.
3. Provide a means of easy response to act on the offer.

If you leave out any one of those elements, you not only will end up with a failure, you will be doing something other than direct response.

You can read the entire article over at Target Marketing. I provide a simple definition of “offer,” take a look at the guts of an offer, reveal the world’s best offer, and discuss how to test into offers the right way.

This is really all part of my simple “big picture” approach to effective copywriting. While little tweaks can sometimes boost response for giant promotions, and occasionally a small headline edit can make a difference, generally little changes produce little results. To get big improvements, you should concentrate on the big picture. In direct marketing that means the list, the offer, the format, and then the overall copy approach.

If you want to know more about offers, have a look at my list of 99 proven offers. You can also read a detailed explanation of the 3 elements of direct response.

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