I had the chance to finally listen to a fantastic interview with Perry Marshall (google adwords expert) and John Carlton (a very successful copywriter) on successful copywriting techniques. For those of you that know me, you know I love internet advertising for many reasons. I love the instant feedback, the power of tweaks (sometimes changing two words can improve conversions dramatically), and the nearly instant sales generating ability. I believe that my few years in doing it, mainly as an affiliate, has taught me more about marketing and advertising than my 4 years at the excellent Fisher School of Business at THE Ohio State University ever did. Anyway, a few takeaways from the teleseminar:
1.)To take any venture from zero to success fast you need to focus “100 times more time,” on smart marketing than on product development. That is, a smart marketing campaign on a mediocre product will sell better than a poor marketing campaign on a fantastic product. (my thoughts below)
2.) Don’t sell something. Most marketers make the mistake of thinking they must sell. Wrong, no one wants to be sold. Find what people are looking for, then show it to them.
3.)Direct response/internet advertising is your best bang for your buck (internet, mail, magazine)
4.)Ask for ACTION. Tell the customers want you want them to do, and how they can do it now!
5.)Record a successful sales pitch. If you can, find a successful salesman already selling the product/your product. Record a few of his sales meetings (with permission of course) and note both what he says and ESPECIALLY questions being asked by customers. These questions are the key to a good copywritten ad. Take the questions asked, and answer them in bold in your campaign. Use the powerful human storytelling in your pitch for great returns.
6.)Appeal to the passionates. Write an ad that turly appeals to the passionate potential customers in that space for great returns.
7.)Personalization – A personalized campaign (Dear John Smith) will outperform a generic campaign by upwards of 30%
8.)Eliminate doubt – Take away all the reasons someone wouldn’t want it, so all they are left with is “I want this.” Then show them how to go out and get it.
He also talked about doing an advertising campaign to gauge interest before spending big bucks on a major campaign or EVEN before building the product. I think this truly could be a model for internet business creation going forward. With $1000 or even $500 someone could create a simple, yet effective landing page with a brief product description and an email sign up and drive traffic through google adwords or adbrite. If you get a certain number of sign ups, you’ll not only know there is interest in your product but you’ll also have a list of your first customers. If it doesn’t work you’re only out $500-$1000 and some time, instead of all your time and potentially lots of money.
Ad copy is a fascinating study of people. It’s really amazing to see what pulls our strings of interest, and what doesn’t. And even more amazing that most of the same sales principles of the last 100 years, still remain in tact today. Ultimately it remains one of the more powerful techniques if mastered.
Sign up for perry marshall’s email list if interested, he has lots of stuff like this.