Tag Archives: Selling

5-Must Have Books for Triggering Explosive Business Growth

If there’s one thing stopping you from triggering explosive growth in your business it’s knowledge…

 

Knowing how to generate prospects and close leads.

 

Remember, no matter what type of business you’re in, you’re always in the business of marketing.

 

So here are 5 must reads that will (when coupled with action) smash you beyond your current level of business and leave your competition coughing over your dust bubbles.

 

Why 5?

 

Because it’s better to learn from 5 great books and apply that knowledge; rather than whiz through 20 good ones with just surface level insight.

 

These have been the most influential marketing books for me and for many others. I hope you can find value in them too.

 

1- Getting Everything You Can Out of All You’ve Got – Jay Abraham

 

A no no-nonsense book that slices through all the fluff and gives you timeless marketing lessons that apply to any business. you could put into action one day and profit from the next.

 

2- Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion – Robert B. Cialdini

 

This pack-a-punch book is an excellent tool for understanding human nature and psychology and how to apply that knowledge to your marketing, with vivid stories that illustrate the power of a little psychology in your marketing. Definitely a lethal weapon to holster in your marketing arsenal.

 

3- Kick-Ass Copywriting Secrets of a Marketing Rebel – John Carlton

 

The book is only available directly from John’s site, it’s more pricey than your average marketing/copywriting book, but it’s worth every single penny. Crammed with secret treasures from a battle-tested marketing veteran, this book reads like a hypnotic page turning thriller. John’s infectious writing style leaps out the pages and into your brain whilst drilling you with actionable pearls of copywriting and marketing wisdom that are guaranteed to help you fatten your wallets.

 

4- The E myth– Michael Gerber

 

The E myth is an essential reading for anyone with an audience based business. The main message being how to work on your business and not in it. How to actually grow a business, not just waste away time doing technical work. Which can prove challenging for many of us business owners who are in love with the services and products we offer.

5- Engagement from Scratch!: How Super-Community Builders Create a Loyal Audience and How You Can Do the Same – Danny Inny

 

The ultimate guide on growing your audience based business and it’s free on the firepole marketing website!

 

Danny Inn, and other well known individuals who have built thriving audience based business use their insights to describe how they would build an audience based business again, literally from scratch. Implementing the advice in this book will enhance your business, simple as.


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7 Must Have Ingredients For A Powerful Sales Letter

 

There’s a ton of sales letters out there.

Some of them are great, while others just suck ass.

A sales page can make a huge difference in the amount of revenue that your product brings. A good sales page means higher conversions, increased traffic and ultimately more sales and cash.

But how do you go about creating a solid sales letter that milks cash?

1. Dangerously Hypnotic Headlines

A headline can make or break your sales page.

Most writers often slap one together at the last second.

This is a big mistake.

Think about it.

Before your prospect arrives at your body copy, the only way to attract his attention is to draw  him in with your headline…And according to master copywriter John Carlton, “Savvy copywriters often spend 90% of their time crafting just the headline”.

Your headline is the foundation of your sales page. If it fails, so does everything else.

It has two main objectives:

1. Stop your intended audience dead cold and steal their attention

2. Grab them by the hand and lead them in to your ad

And for your headline to do the two things above, it has to either;  provide a benefit so valuable and mouth-watering that your prospect can’t help but read it, or pique his curiosity until he can’t help but descend down into your copy.

Take for example the following headlines below:

  •  How To Jack Up Your Testosterone Level Over 250% At Exactly The Right Time In Your Workout… Every Time You Work Out (John Carlton)
  • How To Burn Off Body Fat, Hour-By-Hour (Gary Halbert)
  • Do You Make These Mistakes In English? (Gary Halbert)

They all either pique the reader’s curiosity or provide an enticing benefit that is guaranteed to powerfully suck readers into reading on.

When coming up with your next headline, think about the biggest benefit or most unique  feature of whatever you’re selling is, then work that into your headline.

2. Gripping Opening Paragraphs

Want to know the purpose of your headline? To get the the first sentence read.

The purpose of the first sentence? To get the second sentence read.

And the purpose of the second sentence? You guessed it…to get the third sentence read. And so on etc.

Once you’ve got a pack-a-punch headline, your next hurdle is to lure your reader deeper into your copy with captivating sentences and paragraphs.

Because if your reader doesn’t make it past your opening sentences and paragraphs, he damn sure ain’t making it down to your buy it now button.

So how do you keep your reader glued to your copy and have him smoothly slide from paragraph to paragraph like Tarzan swings effortlessly from tree to tree?

Easy.

Use short sentences, short paragraphs and ask questions, just like what I’m doing to you right now .

Short sentences and paragraphs are easy to read. Follow them up with a couple of questions, and you have a smooth conversational flow that compels people to keep reading.

3. Subheads That Demand Attention

Subheadings are like mini-headlines. Not only do they entice your reader further down the page; but they also break up your copy and make it look less intimidating.

Most people scan when they read; your copy is no different.

Subheads will allow scanners to quickly identify what part of your copy resonates with them and instead of having to dive into an ocean of words and information.

Again, use the same principles behind creating killer headlines to create killer subheads.

4. Use Attention Arresting Words That Slap Your Prospects In the Face

Good copy goes light on goes light on adjectives. And heavy on action verbs.”John Carlton.

The purpose of copy is to boil your readers emotional cauldron till they are driven to take action.  And one way to instantly inject a hefty emotional wallop into your writing, is to use power-words that force readers to feel.

Your words have to penetrate your readers defenses and open the floodgates of emotion.

The best the way to do that is to paint vivid pictures in your prospects mind via hard-hitting action verbs.

Take a look at the sentence below.

“He was a horrible, cruel man who’s ginger colored hair blew in the wind as he told his sad, sobbing wife that their marriage was over.

Compare that too…

“The cold-hearted bastard plunged a knife right into her heart.”

Action verbs add attention arresting strength and vigor to your copy that adjectives lack.

To crank up the power of your words, find a sales letter that blew your mind and study the action verbs. Ask yourself what other words could be used. Play with the sentence structure. Get used to picking the right word.

 5. Bullet Points That Stomp On Greed Glands

You’ve captured your readers attention. He’s interested in your copy. The next step?

Stomp on your his greed glands. Show him how he’ll benefit from your product. How?

Fire benefit driven bullet points that transform his spark of interest into a monstrous flame of scorching desire.

Start off by creating a fact file about your product. These are the simple features of your product.

Let’s say your selling an exercise program designed to help people lose weight.  Your features would look like this:

  • Five 60 minute DVDs that show you how to correctly perform calisthenic exercises and the mistakes to avoid.
  • A 100 page e-book on nutrition
  • A workbook for you to track your progress

That’s a basic list of features. Stopping here is a big no no. Your customers burning questions need to be answered.

What you need to do now, is transform those features into benefits. What will those features do for your customer?

  • The 60 minute DVDs are included because they help you perform exercises correctly and prevent injury from improper form. They have been proven as best way to learn the exercises, and they allow you to exercise in the comfort of your own home, without having to worry about pesky opening times.
  • There’s a plethora of false information about dieting that encourages long term health problems. We’ve included this nutritional eBook to help you hit the ground running and dodge dangerous diet fads, and direct you to the health-boosting power-foods.
  • Losing weight can be a rocky road at times. That’s why you need something to motivate you. We’ve included a tailor made workbook to help you track your progress, identify where your weaknesses are and most importantly keep you in a positive mind frame.

See what’s going on here?

The benefits of the product are being pumped straight into the readers brain. Instantly increasing his desire for what you are selling.

6. No Risk On Your Prospects Side

People have been take for a ride too often.

They’ve paid for stuff that and it never arrived before.  Why are you any different? How can they trust you?

Sure, you promise that your product will shatter their expectations and that their satisfaction is guaranteed. But guess what, so does everybody else.

The only way to squash the doubts squirming inside your readers brain, is to back your product up with an iron clad guarantee; where you shoulder all the risk.

Offer a 100% money back guarantee and back your claims with cold hard cash. Put your money where your mouth is.

7. A Solid Call to Action

There’s a reason behind why most sales letters have the following phrases at the end; buy now, order before it’s too late, hurry.

It’s because your copy is designed to move your reader to act. Nothing else.

And if you let your readers attention waver even just a little… you’ve lost.

You have to catch him in full lust mode and lead him by the hand to a better place.

You don’t need anything fancy here. Just something that invites the specific action you want.

 

There you are 7 must have ingredients for a killer sales letter. What do you think is the most important part of  a sales letter and why?

Let me know in the comments below!

 

 

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5 Kick-Ass Steps To Swiftly Supercharge Your Writing

You might have heard what the legendary copywriter David Ogilvy said about having superb writing…

“When I write an advertisement, I don’t want you to tell me that you find it ‘creative.’ I want you to find it so interesting that you buy the product.”  – David Ogilvy”

Now, even though Ogilvy is talking about ads, the same applies to blog posts.

Why?

Because regardless of whether you’re writing a sales page, a blog post, or an email. Your aim is to get the reader to take action. That action might be to buy your product, share your post, or even just reply to you.

But for your reader to take action, they have to read your post, and for them to finish reading your post…

They have to have enough interest and desire to continue to reading your post.

Let’s do a little role play…

Let’s say you run a blog for medium sized eCommerce businesses.

Imagine you’ve discovered a new sales strategy for eCommerce sites that could explode your blog readers income by an amazing 70% within the next 3 months, have customers salivating for their product, and get them free endorsements.

You craft a post on your blog revealing this business booming strategy and how to implement it…

After racking your brain and writing your heart out for what feels like forever. You relish in satisfaction as you hit the publish button.

Your buzzing with excitement when you think of all the supportive emails, shares, comments, likes, and links you’ll get that will send in droves of traffic to your site and propel your subscriber count soaring through the roof.

But somethings up…

Two agonizingly slow days have passed.

You’ve got over 500 views, but no likes, shares and links whatsoever.

Followed by two spammy comments from “Johnny Buttcrack” touting his ” secret trading system” that made him a “bucket load” of money online by working only 2.5 hours a year.

( Yeah, right.)

Basically…

Your post is as interesting as a picture of a lost buffalo eating grass in a field.

"Hey... I heard that"
Hey… I heard that”

You know what the problem is dontchya?

Your writing.

The content you wrote might have been a life changing treasure but it failed when it came to one crucial thing.

Keeping your reader interested and engaged whilst making your posts (or any type of content) feel like a slippery fun slide vs a brain numbing block of text.

You now have two options when it comes to keeping your reader engaged; hire a professional writer to help you craft powerful content that gets results, or use the actionable steps below to supercharge your writing.

So let’s dive into 5 actionable steps you can take to create, straight for the jugular writing that jumps out of the screen and grabs your readers by the collar, dragging them into your posts.

1. Use the Active Voice

You ever wondered how some sentences have a punchy, fast-paced feeling that keeps you hooked?

Well, one ingredient to creating that pace in your writing is the powerful active voice.

Writing in the active voice is writing sentences in which the subject of the sentence “acts”.     (The subject is doing something)

Which is completely opposite to writing in the passive voice.                                                       (The subject has something done to it)

The passive voice adds horrible bloat to your sentences and lacks the vigor and strength of active sentences.

Below are some examples of lucky passive sentences that will be given sexy linguistic makeover:

Before (Passive)

  • The bat was swung by John
  • The fire was extinguished by Dave
  • The documents were searched by Fred

After (Active)

  • John swung the bat
  • Dave extinguished the fire
  • Fred searched the documents

See the difference here?

After their linguistic makeover (ooh la la) these passive sentences became shorter, stronger, and clearer. Making them more entertaining and easy to read.

For more information on the active and Passive voice check out “The Elements of Style” by Strunk and White.

2-Use “Slap-You-in-the-Mouth” verbs

Writing is a form of communication, and, in order for our writing to communicate effectively, it must be  easy to understand, writing is easier to understand (and more memorable) when it is simple, strong and swift.

Your choice of verbs have a huge impact on how strong and enjoyable your writing is. The right verbs give your post a muscular, grab-you-by-the-throat effect that sucks your reader in like a raging tornado.

And according to legendary copywriter John Carlton

Good copy goes light on adjectives, and heavy on action verbs

The strongest verbs have just one or two syllables, with stress on the second syllable to drive the rhythm of the sentence forward.

For Example: lash,reject,unleash,stomp,destroy,hail,smash.

Check out  this example below too see first-hand how the right verbs beef up your sentences.

(Before)

The toddlers had taken control of the mansion.

He quickly became very angry

 

(After)

The toddlers seized the mansion.

He exploded with anger.

Fascinating how three words can be condensed into one isn’t?

Consistently using powerful verbs throughout your posts will make them more enjoyable, accurate and inject more “ummphh!” into them.

Onward,

3-Make Your Writing Easy for Monkeys to Process.

Write to the Chimpanzee Brain.Simply. Directly.- Eugene Schwartz

That means making your writing itself and its presentation easy to understand and view.

In his book the art of plain talk, Dr.Rudolph Flesch analyzes what makes writing easy or difficult to read. He advocates that 70-80 percent of your writing should be made up of one or two syllable words which will make it easier to  mentally digest.

Now, speaking of mental digestion…

Longer sentences mean longer thoughts. Longer thoughts mean more mental effort is needed to process the information.

Take a look at the structure of the page and paragraphs on this article on the benefits if breathing by Leo Babauta from Zen habits.

The zen habits page is crisp, clear and beautifully simple.

  • There is plenty of white space.
  • There isn’t any visual noise.
  • The paragraphs are short and sweet.
  • The sentences are simple and concise.

Compare them to this horrific excuse for page.

  • The sentences stretch too far across the screen putting excess stress on the eyes.
  • The color is inconsistent and wild looking
  • The background looks like it was edited by a 4 year old who just learned how to use Photoshop.

It’s just. BLUERGH.

Using short sentences and action verbs creates, hard-hitting, butters-smooth copy that readers can’t resist. Combine that with short paragraphs (3-4 sentences max) and you’re giving readers a tasty looking, engaging post that feels warm and welcoming, when compared to an intimidating chunk of text that makes them hurriedly click on the big red X button.

 4- Dump Corporate Language in the Bin

Everyone who is reading your writing wants something out of it. They don’t care about how intelligent or well-educated you are.  They want to talk to someone who understands them. Someone who they can relate to and feel a human connection with.

And according to a survey by the National Center for Educational Statisics “40 to 44 million adults have literacy competency skills at the lowest level.” They can understand only the simplest written instructions.

So, over-complicated corporate speak kills the relatability of your writing and makes it harder for readers to bond with you through your words.

Corporate speak can be spotted by its:

  1. “Fluff” words with no solid meaning
  2. Unnecessary adjectives
  3. Sleep inducing bloated sentences
  4. Large chunks of text that are hard on the eye.
  5. Over-complicated words

Remember all these things murder your readers attention.

They are to be terminated on site.

Take peek at the paragraphs below.

NO. 1

Would you like to make an extra $10,000 a month importing almost any product of your choice?  (Well I’ve been doing so for almost a decade now and have taught my wife Amy how to aswell) Then keep reading. By the time you finish this special report you’ll be well on your way to creating your own importing empire!

Now read this.

NO. 2

If you have an extremely strong desire to obtain an extra of $10,000 a month through importing a vast array of products of your own choice, pay careful attention to this special report providing privileged unprecedented information that is unavailable elsewhere to you.

You see the difference?

Regardless of your readers educational background, simple words and shorter sentences make reading smoother for everybody.

Dr.Flsesh also advocates using definite words. This means using nouns, pronouns, verbs and names to make your writing as specific as possible.  The more specific you are, the less processing your reader has to do to understand your message.

For example, instead of:

Want to acquire an aesthetically appealing physique?

Say:

Do you want to pack on up to 10-30 pounds of rock hard rippling muscle within a year?

Got it? Good.

Next up…

5-Inject Emotion by Arousing Your Readers Senses

Which of these sentences is more exciting and interesting to you?

1: You get a delicious smooth Heaven’s chocolate bar that you’ll never forget.

2: You’ll lose yourself once the luscious ,mouth-watering taste of Heaven’s smooth abd rich chocolate seductively melts in your mouth. Caressing your taste buds and lifting your body and soul into “heavenly” indulgence.

Answers obvious isn’t it? The second paragraph is bursting with powerful sensory adjectives. These adjectives create bright, clear, impactful images and feelings.

They allow your reader to picture and feel what you say in their minds which creates something amazing.

It creates an experience.

When reading the first example above. You just saw words across a screen that you processed, it kinda sounded like a marketing claim too, however…

The second sentence arouses feelings and emotion.  The words purposefully push visual and kinaesthetic buttons in your brain. Making you picture chocolate slowly melting in your mouth, making you feel the rich, sweet texture gliding along your tongue. It grabs you by the hand and takes you on a sensory journey.

Which makes your writing more “tangible” and more of an emotional experience.

Emotional experiences are created by using the following senses:

  • Visual ( sight)
  • Auditory (sound)
  • Kinaesthetic (feeling or touch)
  • Olfactory ( smell)
  • Gustatory (taste)

These senses are the “ingredients” of any experience.

In fact, that’s what memory is.

A collection of sensory experiences in your brain.

Think about your first kiss. Maybe you remember the feeling ( Kinaesthetic), or maybe you remember how the person looks (visual), or maybe you remember the smell of their clothes (Olfactory).

Either way, there is a main sensory ingredient that hooks that experience into your brain and makes it a memory.

The secret to skyrocketing the power of your writing lies in activating the sensory elements in your readers brain through your words. Turning up the intensity of these sensory elements is what causes a powerful internal experience that stirs your readers emotional cauldron to the point where they are bubbling with emotion and happily take the action you desire them to take.

Now, go out there and work your magic!

What point did you find the most fascinating and what would you add? Let me know in the comments section below.

All image rights are held by https://www.flickr.com/photos/photosofsrilanka/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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