Instantly Improve Your Copywriting… Before You Start Writing

Instantly Improve Your CopywritingFormulas are great, aren’t they? A plus B equals C. When it comes to be a copywriting, you don’t need to a copywriting genius – you just need a good formula! They are simple to use, even if you have never studied copywriting. It’s not an exaggeration to say that you can

Instantly improve your copywriting.

In my last post, I explained how to write killer headlines in 2 minutes without thinking using a simple formula.

In this post, I’m gonna give you another formula you can use to instantly improve your copy… before you even start writing. In fact, it is absolutely crucial that you do this exercise before you start writing any piece of copy, whether you’re writing a landing page, sales page or an opt-in form. If you don’t apply this formula, your copy will be weak and ineffective.

Now – let’s get stuck into it.

Here’s the formula, with an in-depth explanation below:

Step 1: Make a comprehensive list of facts about the product.

Step 2: Turn as many of those facts into benefits.

Step 3: Create a compelling offer.

I borrowed this from Gary Halbert, so if you want to read more, check out his post titled “Why I Am The Best Copywriter Alive (I’m Even Better Than The Ones Who Are Dead)!“.

Here’s what Gary H says:

When It Comes To Writing Copy, Far Too Much
Attention Is Paid To The Actual Writing And
Far Too Little Is Paid To Ferreting Out Facts
About That Which The Copywriter Is Trying To Sell!

Think about this for a second. Last time you sat down to write copy, what did you do – did you jump straight to the writing, or did you spend most of your time getting information about what you were trying to sell?

If you’re anything like most people, you sat down at your desk and began writing your copy, without spending much time at all thinking about what you were trying to sell.

The result? Weak, ineffective copy.

The solution?

The facts, benefits, offer formula.

Here’s how –

Step 1: Make a comprehensive list of facts about the product.

Some people call these things features, but features suggests “good” things. Right now, we’re brainstorming and we want good AND bad things about the product. Say you’re selling a book about weight loss. How many pages does it have? Who is the author? Where did the author grow up? What’s the author’s favorite food? Where was the book written? How many chapters? What are the chapter titles? How much time did it take to write? What is the cover picture? How do people get it? Is it digital or physical? Is it available at Amazon.com?

You might think this is a trivial step and that you can skip it…

Don’t.

When you take the time to research properly, you copy will seemingly “write itself”. Imagine sitting down at your computer, and instead of staring at a blank screen, you began writing immediately because you already knew what you wanted to say. Wouldn’t that be cool?

If you take the time to do your research, your fact list with be LONG.

And once you have your list of facts, it’s time to move onto…

Step 2: Turn as many of those facts into benefits.

Here’s the fun part – take your long list of facts and see if you can turn them into benefits.

The author is a doctor? That means your weight loss book is written by a medical authority who knows his stuff, and therefore anyone who reads the book is more likely to get results.

You can download the book at Amazon.com? That means people can get access right away. They don’t have to pay for shipping and they can have the book right away, instead of waiting days and weeks for it to arrive by post. This means that they can start getting results immediately, instead of next week when their motivation will have flagged.

Repeat for as many facts as possible.

Here are some examples for a recent diet program I launched, with the facts in bold:

  • It’s simple: doesn’t complicate things, you don’t need to think, you just get to act and get the results you want. not like the books at Amazon. Get a book and you’ll have WAY TOO MUCH info. sure, it’s good stuff, but do you really need to know that stuff to get the results you want? No.
  • Online only: download it immediately. you don’t have to wait. you get access the instant after you’ve paid.
  • Daily updates: each day, I explain exactly what you’re probably feeling so there is no guess work involved. I walk you through the program, holding your hand and helping you to understand the emotions that you’re doing through. This dramatically increases your chances of success. With someone by your side, you’re twice as likely to persist through the initial hunger and detox symptoms. With my help, you’ll make it through to the amazing energy, drastic weight loss and all round vitality on the other side.
  • Suitable for many diets: Are you a vegan? Vegetarian? Lactose intolerant? Paleo? Good news. This program is suitable for all of them. You’ll only consume fruits and vegetables NO processed foods. How cool is that!?
  • No exercise: You heard me. On this program, NO exercise is required. Sure, you can exercise if you want, but it is NOT necessary. The magic of juicing is so powerful that you don’t even need to exercise to lose weight. However, with the ginormous boost of energy, you’ll probably be itching to put your running shoes on and get moving. If you do, great. But if not, that’s totally fine too. Like I said, exercise is OPTIONAL.

Ok, now that we have a long list of benefits, let’s move on to…

Step 3: Create a compelling offer.

Your offer is your business proposition, and like Gary Halbert says in the post I mentioned, it is “by far the most important element in the entire sales message”.

Did you catch that?

Let me repeat it again in case you missed it –

Your offer is by far, the most important element in the entire sales message.

It’s not your writing. It’s not your software (I’m looking at you, OptimizePress). It’s not your fancy graphics (remember – Pretty pages don’t sell)

It is your offer.

Time for another nugget of gold from Mr Halbert –

“In many cases, a strong offer will succeed in spite of weak copy written by marketing morons!”

That means if you have a strong offer, it almost doesn’t matter whether you can write good copy or not.

So… don’t worry about learning copy, learn about creating compelling offers.

Here’s a standard offer –

  • If you give me $X, I’ll give you X product or service in return.

And here’s the offer in action –

  • If you give me $37, I’ll give you my special diet program. 
  • If you give me $10,000, I’ll give you my sports car for a week.
  • If you give me $197, I’ll give you this effective video course.

But… there’s a problem. None of the above offers are very compelling. It’s all very straightforward ($X dollars for X product or service), but it’s not getting anyone excited. Let’s take the first one and “jazz” it up a bit, shall we?

  • Give me $37, and I’ll show you how you can lose up to 14 pounds in the next two weeks, without drugs or exercise.

Better, but let’s keep going…

  • Give me $37, and I’ll show you how you can lose up to 14 pounds in the next two weeks, without drugs or exercise. Plus, you’ll also get my free video course.

We’re getting there… let’s rinse and repeat…

  • Give me $37 and I’ll show you how you can lose up to 14 pounds in the next two weeks, without drugs or exercise, and keep it off for months and years into the future. You’ll also get my $97 video course for FREE that shows you exactly what foods are devastating to a fat-burning metabolism, plus my 10-part email worth worth $47 for FREE that will keep your motivation stoked and burning high. On top of all this, success is more than guaranteed with my 110% money-back guarantee. Order now…

Get the picture?

The offer above isn’t perfect, but it sure as hell is better than the first offer.

Let’s put the pieces together –

List the facts, convert them to benefits, then create a compelling offer.

It’s simple, easy and effective.

Remember the formula –

FBO – Facts, Benefits, Offer.

Take one of your landing pages. It could be a sales page or an opt-in form. Look at the copy. Think about how it could be improved. But before you write a single word, do the facts, benefits, offer exercise above. It should take you at least an hour, maybe longer. Then use the info you come up with to improve the copy. After doing this exercise, you’ll see opportunities everywhere to improve your copy.

Don’t just read about this. Do it. Today, if possible.

Laterz!

Drop Dead Johnny

P.S. Wanna improve your copy again? Along with the facts, benefits and offer, take a moment to profile your target customer. Who is he or she? How old? Likes? Dislikes? Passions? Dreams? Go into extreme detail. Then, simply match the benefits with your target customer. Easy.

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Neil Roach

Another nice formula. Good tips for writing copy, thanks.

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