Here’s the first part of our discussion about writing killer copy that makes money
In this lesson and four that follow you will learn How To Boost Your Sales Conversions And Make Your Sales Letters And Web Copy More Profitable. The number of books and ebooks written that promise to make your sales soar number into the thousands. But do you need to read all that crap to produce good copy? No. You only need to identify five copywriting principles and how to use them as a foundation for good copy. In this lesson we will speak about the first of those elements: a unique “hook”. No I don’t mean captain hook or a hook you hang your bike on in the garage or a hook you use to catch fish with. I’m talking about a hook that grabs people’s attention and make them curious, angry, afraid, or greedy so they keep reading your copy.
Help! I have a tax problem and I want you to be the beneficiary instead of the IRS…
Let me ask you something, would you read the very next sentence after that? Most likely yes.
The reason is because that opening leaves you wondering 1) what problem did this fool get himself into that the IRS is after him and 2) how can you ‘get something for nothing’ at this person’s expense.
Curiosity is a powerful hook.
For men who want the energy to be a super man in bed (and their lovers who long for the man of ‘steel’)…
That’s a hook I wrote for a health product for men. Tasteless? Maybe a little. Effective? Definitely. If you’re a guy not using Viagra (which this isn’t) I’m certain you’re at least curious about that product. This hooks builds curiosity and also plays against a man’s inborn fears of not being good enough in the sack.
Any monkey ad writer right out of high school can be taught how to format a sales letter in Microsoft Word. But only you know what really keeps your prospects up at night — whether you realize it or not. Here’s how to use your unique knowledge and experience to create sales copy that leaves your competitors dangling from trees.
How is this a hook?
Think of a hook as a theme to your message.
The ‘monkey’ hook is used throughout my copywriting sample page. I speak of monkey and things associated with monkeys throughout that page. Not just at the introduction.
I even call a few people monkeys. :-)
Why? Because ad agents are not trained to write good copy. They are only trained in two things.
- Closing techniques so they can shake money out of you
- How to edit pre-designed generic corporate templates in Quark Express, so they can claim they ‘wrote an ad for you’ and then keep your money.
That is the extent of their copywriting knowledge. I’m not kidding. This is not an exaggeration.
I’ve interviewed many ad agents and the results are the same. They do know how to create ‘pretty’ ads using Quark. They do not know how to write copy that sells. And they do not know how to write hooks.
When you write content make sure you use a hook. But be careful.
One of two reactions occur when people read your hook.
The first is cynicism. They see through your hook and say to themselves, ‘this bloke is just trying to sell me something’ and then they stop reading your message.
How do you prevent that from happening? You must be real. Authentic. Honest. Sincere.
If you’re not honest people can detect that and instead of drawing closer to you, they pull away. Once that happens it will be difficult if not impossible to win their attention again.
The second response that could occur is this. They say to themselves, ‘wow, how can I get one of these new fangled doohickies?!?’
That is definitely the response you want.
The only way to get that response is to make sure you’re congruent throughout your message.
Don’t just start off with an IRS hook and never again mention the IRS or your tax problems. Sprinkle your sales message with references to the IRS or your tax situation so people get the idea the topic runs throughout your message. This prevents cynicism.
When you only use the hook at your intro savvy readers will recognize the hook for what is it and instantly turn off to you. They are not drawn in to your sales message.
That’s the last thing you want.
To see the use of a hook in action print out my copywriting sales letter and read and highlight all references to monkey and the things monkeys do or don’t do.
You’ll gain a huge advantage over your competitors who do not know how to create congruent sales messages.
If you need help writing a powerful sales letter just ask. I’m glad to help if I can. You can reach me here: contact Andre
Have a great day.
PS: Future lessons will explain how to write killer copy using B.I.C.T. and creating irresistible offers. These make up the five critical foundation principles for writing copy that sells.
PPS: If you know any business owners or marketers who would enjoy this lesson, just send them an email with this link: Andre Bell…or bookmark us below with your favorite social networking site (ie Facebook, MySpace, Digg, etc.)
If you would like to find if Andre is currently available for consulting please Contact Us here.