Copywriting Training by the Numbers

copywriting training by the numbers

Photo by Joshua Earle

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Are you a discouraged copywriter?

Do you have the desire to learn the art, but have no idea how you should practice? By learning the important parts of a sales letter and then practicing the skills relentlessly, you can learn how to write decent copy in about a year.

In this lesson, I’m going to give you a blueprint that will take you step by step through the process of writing a standard sales letter.

As I reveal each part to you, I’m going to give you practice drills that will improve your copywriting skills. I’m also going to give you resources that will help you learn how to write copy.

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Why Most Copywriting Training Sucks

I could very easily give you loads of links to sites that have great copywriting courses, but without regimented practice you’re not going to get very good at it.

Plain and simple.

The problem with most courses is that they do a great job of telling you what you need to know, they just don’t give you practice sessions.

 

If you are going to learn any skill, you will need practice – lots and lots of practice. Take learning how to fly a plane, for example.

If you boarded an airplane and the pilot read 25 books or even 125 books on how to fly a plane, would you feel confident with his or her abilities?

Now, think about how would you feel if the pilot had 125 flight hours logged?

Obviously, you would take the experience over the knowledge, wouldn’t you?

On the other hand, having knowledge AND experience is the best route to mastery.

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How to Kill Your Dreams

If you don’t know how to practice writing copy, you’ll stagnate and eventually give up; your dreams of becoming a copywriter will be dead. If you buy a course and merely listen to it, you won’t become a copywriter.

You’ll just become a listener that has no idea how to write the first line. This course will take you through each part of a sales letter so that you’ll know all of the different parts.

After each section, you’ll get instructions on how to practice writing copy. You’ll also be given specific instructions on what to write with an explanation of why you are practicing in this manner.

At all costs, make sure you do the practice sessions.

Why Learning THIS Will Make you a lot of Money

The reason you’re going to learn how to write sales letters is because it lays the foundation to almost every type entrepreneurial writing online or off.

If you look at magazine ads and direct mail pieces by copywriters like Joe Karbo, Dan Kennedy, John Carlton and Gary Halbert, you’ll notice they’re very similar to blog posts, online sales pages, ads, and most other forms of writing.

Other than the method of delivery and automatic processing, the elements of copy are the same on the Internet as they were in magazines years ago.

In advertising copy you have headlines, deck copy, enticing lead lines, subheads, calls to action, etc. So, if you learn the elements of copywriting, you should be able to write for different venues on the web.

How Your Education is Going to be Delivered

First, you’re going to be given a lesson on what you are to learn. You will learn key concepts and ideas that are vital to creating converting sales letters.

Once you understand the concept and have seen some examples of concepts and ideas, you will be given a review. The review will take you through the lesson again to make sure you remember and understand the lesson.

After you have read the lesson and review, you will get an assignment so you can practice.

Remember that practice – lots of it – will make you a good copywriter.

So, here is a breakdown of your first lesson:

Intro to Copywriting Research ─
Finding Out What Your Prospects Really Want

• How knowing what your prospects think will make you the “Master of Your Domain”
• How to go deeper to make a mint
• Sources of information that will make you look like a mind reader
(Trade shows, sales people, associations)
• Take a tour and convert more

Yes, as you can tell from the above sections, there are a lot of things to consider before you actually start writing. However, in this lesson I’m going to tell you tell you what type of attitude you need to have before you begin.

Before We Get Started – Here’s a Couple of Rules

Rule #1 – Don’t try to be a perfectionist. There’s not a single copywriter out there that has hit a homerun every time. If you do all of the groundwork, chances are you’ll do OK with your sales letter and have some success with it.

Copywriting is a combination of art and science. So, no matter how hard you try, you won’t write a “perfect” sales letter.

The only way to find out if your sales letter is any good is to run a campaign that targets the crowd you’re trying to sell to. If you make a lot of sales from your letter, then you’ve done a great job.

Rule#2 – Get it down. Once you have completed your research and homework on your target market, start writing ruthlessly. Don’t worry, you are definitely going to write crap. Everyone does at some point and if they tell you they never do, they’re full of it. You’ll have plenty of time to make revisions to your copy, so just think a little and write. That’s all there is to it.

Rule #3 – Start collecting ads written by other copywriters and place them into files. These are called “swipes” by the industry, and the files you place them in are called “swipe” files.

The main reason you’ll be using these files is to get ideas and to study them.

They are very easy to find, just type in the term “famous sales letters” into Google and click on the “Images” link. You’ll be treated to images with links to sales letters.

You can easily download them into a file in your computer. At the end of this lesson, I’ll give you some links to where you can get some files of your own.

Another place to find swipe files is on magazine racks. When you go to the store, take a look at the magazines. In the back of most of them, you’ll see ads. Opportunity magazines have loads of copy you can easily buy and swipe.

Here’s a couple places you can find swipe files on the Internet:

Swiped – I think you have to join to use these resources.
52 Headline Hacks – Written by the King of Blog Posts – Jon Morrow
Famous Sales Letters – This is a link to a Google Images page where you can get swipes.
The Lazy Copywriter’s Swipe File – This is an eBook
Clickbank Marketplace – This is an awesome place to swipe sales pages from seasoned copywriters. There are pages of online ads and video sales pages to get ideas and copy from.

Conclusion to the Introduction

As you can see, there’s a lot to learning the craft of writing copy. In my next post, We’ll start learning how to do research so that you’ll understand your audience and prospects.

As it turns out, the more you know about your target audience, the more successful your sales letter will be.

If you have any comments or questions, please use the comment box just below this post.

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