Write even FASTER Copy… Slash Your Writing Time By 60%… and DOUBLE — and dare I say — TRIPLE Your Income!
World-class copywriter Clayton Makepeace launched a health revolution — and he did it in a weekend!
That’s how long it took him to write the blockbuster promotion called “Give Me 90 Days”. It was for a newsletter called Health & Healing.
Back in 1991, that promotion mailed MILLIONS of pieces each month for over 2 years. I know — at the time, I was the marketing manager responsible for finding the mailing lists for that fantabulous promo!
My mentor Clayton Makepeace wrote that package in less than 48 hours, sitting poolside and tanning his cute cheeks. So why was it taking ME 6 to 8 weeks to write a half-way decent health promo?
Back in 2005, I gave myself a huge challenge: Cut my writing time in half without sacrificing quality and profitability of my work.
How’d I do?
Not only did I achieve my goal, I BEAT IT in spades!
Back then, I was writing about six direct mail packages a year. These were mostly 24-page magalogs/tabloids. I also completed a few other smaller projects — inserts, renewal
programs, etc …
My success rate was around 66% — in other words, 4 out of 6 packages became controls.
In 2006, I put into practice my speedwriting program and I wrote 14 magalogs/tabloids… provided copy for a new website launch… wrote several inserts, calendars, other small projects and was the copy chief for half a dozen junior copywriters on other projects.
Phenomenal, right? But that’s not all…
I wrote 6 of the tabloid packages in less than 3 weeks — one package launch took me just 10 days! (Watch out Clayton, I’m moving in on your record!)
Plus …I more than DOUBLED my copywriting income — and my success rate shot up to 86%!
In other words, I’m getting 20% more royalty income from 6 additional packages!
And the writing streak just kept improving:
• In 2009, I wrote 9 packages in less than 12 days — and 8 of them became controls!
• In July, 2010, I finished a project sooooh fast — it made my client’s head spin. He subtly accused me of rushing to finish the job. But when he read the copy — he loved it — and made very little changes to it! (By the way — I have to admit I was a little ticked off by the accusation. So if I ever decide to write for that client again, do you think I’ll change my writing approach? Heck no! I’m sticking to my winning formula. However — I may just let his copy “sit” for several weeks before sending it to him. That will probably make him feel better!) Sorry, I digressed…
• In 2013 — my husband and I celebrated our 30th anniversary. We spent the year traveling around the world — visiting 7 different countries! Did my writing business suffer? Absolutely NOT! With my now finely-tuned system — I still wrote 8 packages — and had an 88% success rate!
• In 2014 — ONE international client booked up all 12 of my entire copywriting slots for the year! I worked on all sorts of projects — including launching a new line of products and revamping the copy on his website! What an adventure!
• In 2015 — I THOUGHT I was going to take it easy after a whirlwind 2014. My plan was just to work on fun projects and launches. Well, I had so much FUN — I ended up writing 14 packages! And 12 were controls! That’s an 85% solid success rate!
• In 2016 — I slacked off. I only wrote 8 packages the entire year. Why? Well, my husband and I decided to travel throughout Europe. We experienced an authentic Italian wedding that lasted ALL day and night — with 7 courses of delicious foods. Mama Mia! We ended up visiting 11 cities throughout Italy. And my retired Firefighter husband even saved a police officer from drowning in Venice! Now, that was an amazing story!
Then we visited 3 cities in France — including Paris, of course. We spent an entire day in the Louvre Museum — with our own personal tour guide! Wow, wow, wow!
After that it was a week in Barcelona, Spain and then a quick stop in Amsterdam before heading back home. Heck, after all that traveling — I needed a VACATION! So, I took MORE time off just to relax at home! But you know what…
… 7 of those 8 packages became controls! An 87% success rate! Now, it was starting to irritate me that I just couldn’t break past 80%. So I made a bold decision…
• In 2017 — I made the conscious decision to ONLY write launch packages. Why? NO competition! When you write a launch — there’s no previous control to beat. If your package works — you’re the instant control! I’m starting my 7th launch package of the year — and I’ve got 5 more lined up. Plus — I’m breaking into writing space ads. Just completed my first one last month. Could this be the year of a 100% success rate…ooh I SURE hope so. Stay tuned!
Now, I’m not telling you all this stuff just to brag (well, maybe just a little). I really want you to know the secret to my success isn’t rocket science. I juz ain’t that smahrt.
You too can put a few of these little tricks to work — and you’ll see your copywriting income increase too!
Like I said, I’m no rocket scientist — but I do know a thing or 2 about writing copy. So in the next few issues — I’m going to give you what I call my…
7 keys to writing faster and making lots of moolah!
Ok, right now, you’re going to discover a few of my proven tips to help YOU see a BUMP in your copywriting income. Let’s get started…
Key #1: Convince yourself: Know what the heck you’re talking about. In other words, do your research. Spend time getting into the mind of your prospect.
My clients usually send me a copywriter research kit. In addition — you’ve got to do as much research as you can to really KNOW the product. You’ve got to convince yourself this is the best product ever and everyone needs to have it. And, if at all possible, use the product!
I always request samples and take/use whatever I’m working on (with the exception of the male potency stuff. Doesn’t work for me and my husband swears he’ll never need it.)
I want to see and feel a difference the product makes on ME. In other words, I’m convincing myself before I try to sell anybody else! Many times, I’m so certain the product works, I write my own testimonial for the package!
If you’re working on a product and don’t believe its value — do yourself a favor and turn down the job. The odds of failure are great — and why do you want to sell a crappy product anyway?
Key #2: Less is MORE: Work with a few clients — and really get to know their business! I’m in my 18th year as a freelance copywriter. And I’ve found the years I worked with just 2 or 3 clients produced more revenue than when I worked for 6 or more companies!
Of the 14 packages I wrote in 2015, 10 were from 2 clients. They were a variety of nutritional products — but all were targeted to the same demographics. So I knew immediately who I was writing to.
Last year I worked for 3 clients — and it’s only because one was an old client who’s back in direct mail. We worked together for over 7 years — so I knew what he was all about.
I didn’t have to “learn” my market every time — just had to get into the benefits of the product. And because I was familiar with the companies, I knew their risk tolerance. That helped avoid a lot of edits from the legal department!
Let me also say this: I do believe it’s important not to “put all your eggs in one basket”. In other words, I try to add at least 1 new client every year to pump new blood into my business. But I make sure that new client fits my niche. That way I don’t have to re-learn an industry.
(Of course, one exception to this rule was the opportunity to work on an Oprah project — how could I turn THAT down?!? If you don’t know what I’m talking about,
However — please know this: Limiting yourself to one client — without a sweet exclusivity arrangement — means if your only client is having a bad year — so are you. So be careful!
Ok, CopyStar — we’re going to stop here. Don’t want to overload you. In the next issue — I’ll show you how to get over that “Deer in the headlight” feeling when you’re staring at a blank page! And you’ll get even MORE Copywriting Keys to success! Until then…
Million-Dollar Copywriter & Consultant