Monday, February 14, 2011

You're Talking - Are They Listening?

G'day friend,

Sorry for the delay. I broke my daily post vow. Let's see if I can get back on track. It's a fresh new week - I hope the weekend has seen you to good health.

Happy V-Day, by the way. (Just in case you forgot)

By the way, if you didn't take advantage of the fact today is V-Day, especially if you own a restaurant, a florist shop, or anything or that sort... You should give yourself several hundred lashes. Right now. A big, fat, burst of profit to be made. And to make that profit, all you had to do was send a postcard. I mean, that's not so hard, right? Yeah, of course not.

Anyway, enough preaching from the pulpit. If you don't mind, I'd like to jump right into this.

My topic today is something near and dear to my heart- conversation.

You know, I swear... When I read the copy some people write, I feel like they're speaking to me from a podium. And not speaking to me in an inviting, "faux-conversation" sort of way. Really, I just feel like I'm being told something.

That's a no-no. See, whenever you're writing, you're trying to imitate face-to-face selling. Makes sense, right? I mean, copywriting is "salesmanship-in-print" or "multiplied selling."

If you sold anything face-to-face or on the phone, I'm sure you know what's the one thing you MUST do... Can you guess? Don't worry - take a swing at it.

Build rapport? Precisely, amigo.

And how do you build rapport? Conversation!

Look, I've covered "research" in some depth. I have a few posts dedicated to just that subject, so I recommend you look through a few of the back-issues.

But truthfully, even if you know your prospect SO WELL he thinks you're sleeping under his bed... It means NOTHING if he feels like it's a one-way conversation.

The goal is this: you should make each sentence "feel" like it's being spoken. Be casual. Write as if you actually ARE speaking to someone. Read your writing out loud- read it casually, with all the question marks and exclamation points...

Would you REALLY talk to someone like that? If not, then you drop it. Because the MINUTE your prospect picks up on the fact this is all artificial - that you're "talking at him," he's going to toss your letter... delete your email... or click away from the page (no matter if you have 30 downsell mesages).

OK, would you like an example? You rascal.

Well, you should have one right now. Take a gander at my writing. Pretty simple. You should be trying to gauge each sentence. The sentence itself must be organic. Once you do that, the words flow into sentences, the sentences into paragraphs, the paragraphs in more paragraphs... And they do it all seamlessly.

The best advice I can give you is "writes likes you talks," warts and all. I mean, you can clean it up after you're done. That's the beauty of typing/writing letters.

Anyway, hope this helps you. Do some practice, and you'll get the hang of it.

Over and Out,


PS. By the way, another great way to get better at "clear" sentence flow is to handwrite the successful ads of other copywriters. Try and capture their ebb and flow.

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