If you only read business/marketing books, you’ll be boring company at the pub.
And you’ll miss some fantastic opportunities to beat your competition.
I reckon a good 25% of my copywriting chops didn’t come from marketing books at all. It came from reading and writing fiction, and discovering how bestselling authors keep you gripped through 400 pages.
Anyway, I don’t have any fiction published. But I’m sending you my new copywriting book on September 7th. It’s called “Gold Standard Copywriting: How to write breakthrough financial promotions at breakneck speed,” and its deadline is set in stone.
While editing this book, I stumbled upon a paragraph which reminded me of a powerful copywriting trick – one that hardly anyone talks about. It went like so:
Once you’ve struck gold in your test, you should have all the basic elements of a successful campaign. You can launch in record time. After all, you know your idea works. You already have a structured message, taking your reader from attention through to action. And most of your sales message has already passed through compliance.
What’s wrong with this?
One of the simplest, yet more advanced copywriting tricks I heard came from the late novelist Jack Bickham.
Same as with physics, Bickham taught his workshop students that good writing follows the laws of cause and effect. You describe the cause…then you explain the effect.
It really is a ridiculously simple switcheroo.
Though it’s easy to stray.
In my paragraph above, the effect sentence – “You can launch in record time” – is placed near the beginning. It should be the paragraph’s very last sentence, like so:
Once you’ve struck gold in your test, you should have all the basic elements of a successful campaign. You know your idea works. You already have a structured message, taking your reader from attention through to action. And most of your sales message has already passed through compliance. You can launch in record time.
Do you see how this gives the whole paragraph more punch? How it sums up everything that was explained?
It goes to show, you shouldn’t only look within your own field for new ways to improve. Be open to new ideas everywhere.
That includes my new book – first draft to be released on this blog September 7th.
Even if you don’t work in the financial industry, I think you’ll find it useful – because I’ve crammed it with ideas to help you write successful copy fast. And honestly, some of these techniques I don’t think you’ll find elsewhere.