Last night, I had an incredible dream. So no, it’s not the kind of dream where you fall from a building and / or you fall endlessly over and over again. This is commonplace. The dream I’m talking about is special. Really. But to tell you about it, I need to put you in context…
It’s Thursday, and I have to make a sales page for a client before the end of the week
So I have 3 days left to do it.
Trouble? I can’t write.
I am blocked.
Normally, I manage to finish my sales pages as best I can, but there … inspiration no longer comes.
Everything I write seems rubbish to me, and I have the pressure not to return my work on time.
In short: it is Thursday, I have 3 days left to finish the page, and that evening, I go to bed anxious.
I’m in a bad mood, and I wonder how I will manage to get out of it …
In fact, in my head, I even tell myself that I will call my client tomorrow to cancel the mission. If I am not able to finish on time, I might as well give up.
This is really what I was planning to do … until I had this incredible dream …
How I met the 4 best copywriters of all time
That evening, I dreamed that copywriters came to visit me. I do not know if it is a scheme of my brain to help me get out with this sales page, but in any case, it worked well (you will see it later in the rest of the article ).
And beware, not just any copywriters! I’m talking to you about the 4 best copywriters of all time, that is to say:
- Copywriter # 1: Gary Halbert;
- Copywriter # 2: David Ogilvy;
- Copywriter # 3: Eugene Schwartz;
- And copywriter N ° 4: John Caples.
These guys are registered in the Pantheon of copywriting.
Everyone who is interested in copywriting, directly or indirectly, knows them, and the four of them have generated billions of euros in sales.
No, it’s not a typo: billions.
Anyway: you can imagine that seeing these 4 legends appear to me in a dream, it was quite incredible.
Most of the time, I admit that I dream of cool little things. Kind of pirate battles where I am the captain, or even that I am Batman and that I travel Gotham City from roof to roof.
It’s cool, but nothing transcendent. So when I saw these 4 legends of copywriting!
W O W.
I was speechless.
These 4 people whose work I devoured and who taught me everything about copywriting were there, in front of me.
It’s like having Michael Jordan for a basketball player, or Zidane for a footballer.
So naturally, I was happy, and I started a conversation with them:
“Hey guys, how are you?” It’s great to see you say so, I didn’t expect it. Nice to meet you “.
(You will notice that I quickly adapted to having 4 copywriting monsters supposed to have died in front of me. It must be the “dream” effect).
But strangely enough, when I asked my question, none of them answered me.
Well. It was weird, but I didn’t let that put me off:
“Uh, do you want something to drink?” A coffee ? A tea ? A chardonnay? I put a new bottle in the fridge, you will tell me new ones. “(Yes, because we were in my living room. Eh oh, that’s MY dream huh).
There it started to get downright creepy.
I had 4 dead guys in front of me – remember in case – who didn’t pick up ONE word for me.
Who looked at me with big eyes like that, but who did not open their mouths:
At that time, I was pretty much like this:
Then after 5 minutes of silence, it relieved me. And I dropped:
“Well, great guys. Have 4 copywriting geniuses in my living room so they don’t say a word, thank you! “.
This is where good old David (Ogilvy) got up suddenly and yelled:
“Copywriting is a direct discussion between the prospect and the copywriter!” “
Honestly, he made me jerk this cunt.
It’s true what: since a while ago, the guys have not picked up a word, and suddenly, there are some who get up to shout.
No, but seriously, it’s big no matter what.
So I said to him:
“Eh oh, David, let’s calm down!” It’s because “sir” is a legend that he can afford to yell at people. Go, calm down, sit back down, I’ll bring you a glass of white. We will then talk about copywriting ”.
But hardly had I finished speaking my sentence when it was now the famous Eugene Schwartz who stood up.
In his turn, he began to shout:
“The copywriter’s job is to make the prospect want to buy the product sold enough to exceed his skepticism, his procrastination, and the price – so that he takes action.”
It started to get heavy at the end.
I was going to shout at Eugene for also shouting, when suddenly … I understood:
These copywriting legends could ONLY speak if we were talking about copywriting.
So before Gary gets up to give his definition of copywriting, I interrupted him by asking the rest of the group:
“So you mean copywriting, huh? “.
” Yes ! “, they replied in choir.
” Very well. So here’s what we’re going to do: I’m going to ask you one by one what is your best advice on copywriting, and you’re going to answer me. But you will do it in a courteous and civilized manner, without getting up or shouting. It’s understood ? Can you do that? “
Perfect: I had managed to discipline the ugly jojos.
From the outside, the situation had to be frankly comical: 4 legends of copywriting having generated millions and millions who listen obediently to a young copywriter.
The 4 gugussians therefore sat down calmly, and one by one, they gave me their best advice on copywriting.
Honestly? It was a real gold mine. I learned a lot.
And in this article, I’m going to tell you WORD FOR WORD what they told me.
I advise you to note well. Because there, it is of the same ilk as Zidane who learns to put a goal (or a stroke of the ball, at choice).
Gary Halbert’s advice: A hungry crowd
Gary was the first to speak:
“For me, my buddies, it’s not complicated. Everyone talks about tactics, techniques, tips when it comes to increasing sales.
But the most important thing? It’s having a hungry crowd in front of you!
Because yes: you may have the best pizza truck, the best dough, the best ingredients … if you have no one to buy your pizzas, well, you’re fucked up.
What you need is a hungry crowd. In other words, sell to prospects who have a REAL need, urgent, and painful.
Selling a slimming cream to a woman who still has some curves but who has already found the line, that’s it.
Selling a proven diet to a woman who absolutely wants to lose weight and feels bad about herself is great.
You see the trick. “
David Ogilvy’s advice: The title is the most important element
Once Gary sat back down, it was David’s turn to speak:
“Thanks Gary. It is true that he is not wrong: if you sell to prospects who do not have painful problems, sales never arrive.
For my part, I would like to talk about the most important element to work once we have found these prospects: I of course want to talk about the title.
Everyone is talking about catchy and hypnotic headlines today on the Internet. And I must admit that I am very happy that we have learned my lesson.
Because it should not be forgotten that it was I who first discovered that on average, 5 times more people read the title than the rest of the sales page.
Never forget: when you wrote your headline, you used 80 cents of your dollar.
Work on your title, and your sales page will be successful. “
Eugene Schwartz’s advice: Knowing your market is the basis!
“Well then, you all know my advice: it’s to know your market.
The market, the market, the market. Damn: I say it again? The market. It’s the baaase guys. “
(Yes, Eugene was a bit full of himself. But hey, he was also one of the best, so …)
Gary then spoke:
“Damn Eugene, you keep repeating the same thing. Damn what, develop a little for the kid, be nice … “
(The kid was me).
“Ok Gary, ok. Well, it’s not complicated.
At the time, I told people you should watch the movies and read the most popular magazines. The ones everyone was watching, the ones everyone was reading.
Because to sell to people, you have to understand them. You have to be in touch with the people.
Know what they like … how they think …
But today with the Internet, it’s great. The possibilities are multiplied. We can ask questions to our readers by email in an instant … talk to them … do surveys … q
Wow, yeah: if I had lived in your time little Théo, I think I would have made even more cash, hahaha. “
John Caples’ advice: Play on emotion
This is where the last of the copywriters – John Caples – spoke:
“Totally agree with dear Eugene. Besides, we had discussed it the last time, and knowing its market and the base since it then allows us to know the emotions of our prospects.
Eugene talks about mass desire in his book. Me of hidden desires.
To give a concrete example, we only have to take back my famous sales page that everyone knows, well. “
Sighs in the room.
Mocking laughter in a few corners.
Apparently, the other copywriters were fed up with John constantly repeating the same story.
It must be said that John Caples is the guy who wrote the best known ad in the history of copywriting – and who was also the most plagiarized.
This ad is, “They Laughed When I Sat Down At The Piano – But When I Started to Play! ”
Or literally: “They laughed when I sat on the piano – but when I started playing! “.
Its purpose was to sell piano lessons by correspondence, and it was a great success.
Anyway. Once the laughter was over, John continued:
” HM hm. So I was saying – before my dear comrades cut me off – that the most important thing on a sales page is to tackle the wishes of the readers.
For example, in my piano commercial, I stage the story of Jack.
Jack sits on the piano, and everyone thinks he can’t play and he’s going to miss. We talk about him, we even laugh.
But when he starts playing, then everyone is silent, and his friends are all in awe of his melody.
On my sales page, I purposely set out the desires that the reader will want to feel himself when he plays the piano. Of the kind :
- The incredulous smile of his friends who do not believe their eyes (and their ears);
- Applause ;
- Les: “Wow, but I didn’t know you were so good at it!” Did you learn where to play like that ?? “;
If I had just said, “You are going to play the piano really well, you will learn beautiful songs and you will be proud of yourself”, yes, I would have sold a few copies.
But it would have been nothing compared to the sales that there were when I decided to type the hidden desires of my readers in my sales page. “
After this advice, something crazy happened
I had just received the most important advice from 4 copywriting legends.
For a copywriter like me, it was crazy. I was swimming in a dream (and it is the case to say so).
So when they’re all done talking, I tell them:
“Frankly, thank you very much guys. These copywriting lessons have been so instructive for me … I can’t thank you enough.
On the other hand, there is something that annoys me (yes, I say “turlupine” in 2019, so what?): you all gave me different advice.
And I’m not complaining! It’s great, and I have diversity at least! But is there anything in the area of copywriting that the four of you agree on? “
They looked at each other for a moment, then smiled.
Gary then took the floor and said to me: “Indeed, there is something that we all agree on. It’s a book. “
” A book ? Wow, great. I’ve always wanted to know what your favorite copywriting books were, but if you all agree on THE book you need to read to increase sales, then this is crazy. What is this book? “
” his name is The Structure Of The Star “says Gary.
Seeing that I was a little taken aback by this title which is more “Star Wars” than copywriting, he went on:
” The Structure Of The Star, this is a book that shows you how to write a sales page that sells for sure, in 5 steps. It guides you step by step, and at the end of your reading, you know exactly how to write your sales page. And you make tons of sales.
We all read it and applied it here. And most of our top selling pages (and we’re talking about millions) all follow this 5 step structure.
David, it’s true for you right? “
” That’s right “replied David.
“Eugene, John, is that for you too, right? “
“ affirmative “they replied in choir.
” Even my famous piano sales page which is written in the form of a story follows these 5 steps in the end ”added John.
I was amazed.
A book that contained everything you needed to know to write a great sales page, and which was also recommended by the biggest.
I couldn’t take it anymore, and I absolutely wanted to own it.
“Fuck but it’s crazy! Gary, please, tell me where I can find this book. “
“Unfortunately small, it no longer exists” said Gary.
“It was in circulation in our time, but already it was very rare. Over the years, it gradually disappeared… ”
Seeing that I was upset and that I was starting to mope, he went on:
“But you know what little one? All of us here have read it so much that we remember it by heart.
And as I like you, I’ll tell you orally. You will only have to take notes, and like that, you too will know these famous 5 steps that make a sales page sell. “
Neither one nor two: when Gary told me that, I ran to get my Mac, and two minutes later, I was sitting across from him, an open Word document, ready to write down anything he said to me.
“ Ready ? “ said Gary.
“ Ready “ I replied.
And that’s how I got access to this famous book in the continuation of my dream.
And you know what ? Even though it was only a dream, when I woke up, my memory was crammed with everything Gary had told me.
So I did the same thing: neither one nor two, I went to get my computer, and I transcribed everything that I had retained in an online document.
Today, this precious document is available on my blog, and I offer it for free to my readers, as Gary so kindly offered it to me in my dream.
By the way, what has become of my client?
Do you remember the sales page I told you about at the start?
The one that I had to return within 3 days but that I couldn’t finish? Well in the end, it went really well.
With the 5-step structure, I have no trouble writing it, and I finished it on time.
Even better: this sales page was a hit.
Thanks to the 5-step structure, I was able to increase my client Laurent from 2,500 to 4,000 € in sales per month – just by changing his sales page, and applying the 5 steps.
I put you the link of this incredible book, just here.
Take advantage while there is still time, before the legendary ghosts of copywriting come to take it away 😉
– Théo, Le Copywriter