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Thursday, March 12th, 2009

Websites That Write Your Salesletter For You?

Websites That Write Your Salesletter For You?

ph03414i 150x150 Websites That Write Your Salesletter For You?When you sell anything on the internet… whether you do it using e-mail marketing, forum marketing, blog posting… if you sell e-books, physical products, e-classes, even a newsletter… the best way to sell anything is using direct response sales copy.

But not all of us can be world-class copywriters like Michel Fortin. I consider myself a pretty sloppy copywriter, and althought I can whip up a headline, quick story, bullet point list of benefits, testmonials, feature list, guarantee and a call-to-action… I will never be a great copywriter.  Gary Halbert can’t hold my attention for longer than a few minutes, I’ve never read Scientific Advertising, so how do I scrape by writing average sales copy?

The answer is: practice and resources. I’ve written enough sales letters that I know what my audience wants and how I can present it to them to maximize sales.  I rarely spend more than a couple of hours writing even 5 or 10 page sales letters, and some have converted as high as 19 percent for me.

Even if you don’t have the skill or the practice, you can still hit the following sites to produce an average sales letter, enough for a copywriter to rewrite it or critique it.

Site #1: Digg.com
As far as I’m concerned, Digg is THE best place to find niche headlines from popular, specific and benefit-oriented, but funny news items.  Go to Digg.com, type in your niche keyword and click Search.  Then refine the search to search by the title only (so your keyword is in the title), show all stories (not just front page stories), and sort by most diggs (so the news items “the people” like float right to the top).  Using the Digg technique, I helped a copywriter come up with this headline: “Man Wins Divorce Without a Lawyer In Sight!”  Makes you want to find out more, right?

Site #2: HardToFindAds.com
Michael Senoff’s Hard to Find Ads is like an instant swipe file.  He shows you random ads, most of them decades old, written by the most famous and best converting copywriters that ever lived.  You can take clever headlines, ideas and bullet points from these ads and rewrite them as your own.

For example, the first ad I found reads like this: “Top Medical Doctor Speaks Out!  An Open Letter to Anyone Who Wants to Lose Up to 20 Pounds in Two Weeks the Easy Way.”  If you were writing copy for growing organic tomatoes, you might say: “Top Organic Gardener Speaks Out!  An Open Letter to Anyone Who Wants to Grow 15 Pounds of Tomatoes in 8 Weeks the Easy Way.”  Obviously you’d change the numbers to whatever you can prove, but that headline is better than anything I could come up with from scratch.

Site #3: Amazon.com
Amazon.com isn’t just for buying books. You can use Amazon to find out several things: what KINDS of books in your niche are hot sellers right now.  You can also choose the top selling books and most of the time take a peek at the table of contents.  Bingo, instant list of bullet points you can hit on with the sales letter.  Amazon also gives you a list of keywords related to that book, to give you even more ideas for bonus reports, videos, and emotional hot buttons.  If all that wasn’t enough, you can read through reviews of the book and make a note of the terminology people in that niche tend to use.

Site #4: Archive.org
Look at one of your competitors’ sites in your niche.  Then look their site up on the Internet Wayback Machine to see how their page has changed over time.  The other day I was watching the TV show “Mad Men” about advertisers in the 1960′s.  In one episode, the men in the ad agency are talking about a magazine ad by Volkswagen.  The ad was ugly, and the car was ugly, and the guys were baffled because Volkswagen kept placing the same ad… so it must be pulling in money!

This is the internet equivalent of that.  If you know a site pulls in lots of sales, and it was written by a copywriter who tests the headline, phrasing, bullet points, call-to-action, offer, and so on… you can open up the web page as it looks now, and the web page as it looked 6 months or a year ago, and see what changes have been made.  If a copywriter kept tweaking the headline over time but kept switching back to one in particular, you know it’s a money-maker and you can look at what makes it such a great headline.

Site #5: Google Answers, Google Alerts, and (Your Niche) Forums
These sites “should” be a no-brainer for any copywriter, but so few people pay attention to them and as a result write very “flat” copy.  When you’re selling something, you’re selling a solution, which means you’ve fixing a problem.  People are in pain whether that pain means not having enough money, growing tiny tomatoes or not being able to play the piano.  Look at what questions people are asking in question-and-answer sites like Google Answers and in the forums in your niche by searching for your niche keyword plus the word “forum.”

Site #6: Google Insights, Google AdWords, Yahoo! Search Marketing, Quantcast

Can you tell I’m a fan of Google?  The fact is, simply searching for your keyword in a search engine and seeing what ads appear on the right side is the perfect way to see what headlines pull the best.  That’s the most logical place to go and works wonders compared to pulling out a headline or a hook from thin air.

With those six free resources at your disposal, you have finally run out of excuses.  You can write halfway decent copy for your next promo e-mail, blog post, or sales letter just by seeing what great copy is out there, and “copying” it!

About the Author


Category: Copywriting
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  • http://sportscopywriter.com/ Chad

    Great resources Robert! But when has 19% ever been considered “sloppy” or “average”? ;)

  • http://sportscopywriter.com Chad

    Great resources Robert! But when has 19% ever been considered “sloppy” or “average”? ;)

  • http://3hourad.com/ Jason Fladlien

    Robert – I love the fact that you’re using other people’s resources to help shortcut the process for achieving your own goals. We all should use that approach in our business. Now need to invent the “wagon wheel” again.

    You post was SOLID.

    -Jason Fladlien

  • http://3hourad.com Jason Fladlien

    Robert – I love the fact that you’re using other people’s resources to help shortcut the process for achieving your own goals. We all should use that approach in our business. Now need to invent the “wagon wheel” again.

    You post was SOLID.

    -Jason Fladlien

  • http://www.myminisitegraphic.com/ semmy @ minisite Design Servic

    I just brought his 5 minute copywriting and fast food copywriting. It’s very good information. Especially for me, because I’m not a copywriter. I’m just a designer and minisite designer

    thanks Robert!

    Semmy

  • http://www.myminisitegraphic.com semmy @ minisite Design Service

    I just brought his 5 minute copywriting and fast food copywriting. It’s very good information. Especially for me, because I’m not a copywriter. I’m just a designer and minisite designer

    thanks Robert!

    Semmy

  • http://josephratliff.com/ Joseph Ratliff

    Robert – Great article man!

    The internet is so powerful when used for what it’s truly capable of…massive leverage.

    Someone has written a successful ad, someone has a successful Google Adwords ad set out there…someone has thought of the product you’re thinking of (most likely), etc..etc…

    Good stuff.

  • http://josephratliff.com Joseph Ratliff

    Robert – Great article man!

    The internet is so powerful when used for what it’s truly capable of…massive leverage.

    Someone has written a successful ad, someone has a successful Google Adwords ad set out there…someone has thought of the product you’re thinking of (most likely), etc..etc…

    Good stuff.

  • http://www.copytraining.com/ Joe Swopes

    Good stuff Rob, I like how you think…

    I really liked the use of digg, that’s one I’ve never even thought of

    good stuff

  • http://www.copytraining.com Joe Swopes

    Good stuff Rob, I like how you think…

    I really liked the use of digg, that’s one I’ve never even thought of

    good stuff

  • http://www.MyMagicOffer.com/ OscarD

    Great idea re: Digg. Nice way to keep your finger on the Internet headline pulse.

    Your links sort of comprise a living swipe file.

  • http://www.MyMagicOffer.com OscarD

    Great idea re: Digg. Nice way to keep your finger on the Internet headline pulse.

    Your links sort of comprise a living swipe file.

  • Pingback: Free Swipe Files, Free Writing Courses and More | Top SEO Writing Services

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