First met this Copy King at a Morton’s steakhouse in Bethesda, Maryland, just past the town of Chevy Chase (seriously, it exists!). He and I were staying at the Hyatt Regency for a Yanik Silver Mastermind back in 2007.
It was there that I first noticed the common traits that almost all great copywriters/salesmen shared (like Joel Marion, this guy, Porter Stansberry, Bedros Keuilian, & my real-life salesman buddy, Tommy).
These gifts come naturally to great copywriters…
- They like to eat & drink
- They like to laugh & have a great time
- They are loyal friends
- They are extremely generous
- They LOVE to tell stories… and they are great at telling them.
These all come to them naturally.
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Unfortunately, I’m not a natural in all of those…(just a, part of b, and c). I have to work quite hard at the rest.
Fortunately, the King of Copy gave us the FORMULA we need (to print out) to become amazing salesmen and women. It’s below.
Print these out and review them every time you try to sell something, and thank a King of Copy, Perry Belcher, for sharing them. Perry Belcher is one of the best salesmen that I know – whether in print, in person, or in video.
Perry first came up with this list after stumbling across David Frey’s 12-step foolproof sales letter formula. Perry claims this formula has made him many millions of dollars over the years, but he still was able to add a few upgrades.
Here are Perry’s 21 copy secrets and 8 questions for you…
- Call out to your audience… Be specific! It seems unnecessary to put “Attention: _(insert your audience here)_” at the top of a sales letter, but you see it – and even hear it on the radio – all the time…particularly from top direct marketers
- Grab their attention with your Big Promise Headline telling them, specifically, what you are going to teach them
- Backup the big promise with a quick explanation (sub-headline)
- Identify the problem by telling a story (see my final thoughts about Perry below) and make sure they know that it is NOT their fault that they struggle right now
- Provide your solution – and prove it is the best option
- Show pain (with empathy & affinity)
- Explain ease-of-use
- Show speed of results
- Future cast – Explain to them how their life will be better because of your solution
- Prove that you are the expert (credibility)
- Detail the benefits in bullet points – And here’s an additional bonus tip from Bedros to make this better…
…”Whenever you are creating bullet points, use the phrase “so that” to make the bullet even better.”
For example: The simple benefit “You’ll lose fat with this workout” can be improved by turning it to, “You’ll lose fat with this workout so that you turn heads at the beach & get all the attention you want from the opposite sex“.
(That’s not a great bullet, by the way, but it’s just a sample of how to use that formula to improve your bullet copy.)
- Show proof/testimonials … you can also use an outside authority…such as statistics from research, or quoting an authority (i.e. “According to the Wall Street Journal“)
- Make your offer in detail
- Build up your value – Fragment your offer and then add it all up to increase value
- Add bonuses – increase the value even more
- Reveal your price (this is where the pop up buy button shows up in a VSL) …NOTE: If you are going to split test, start with Price, then test headline, and then test your offer
- Inject scarcity – Find a way to deliver this…via increased price, limited time, etc.
- Give guarantee to remove/reverse all risk
- Call to action – Be specific and tell them what to do to take action now
- Give warning that if they don’t buy, here’s what will happen (i.e. will remain in pain)
- Close with a reminder – a PS recap of everything … Perry said one of his best PS’s went like this:
“PS – As my grandmother said, ‘The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again when it doesn’t work. So if you keep doing what you’re doing now, you’ll be in the same place next year.” And then it went into a summary of the problem, his solution, the offer, and his guarantee.
Listen, this is nothing groundbreaking. And it’s no replacement for a big idea/hook, but it’s a great formula to help you get started. Heck, it will save you a ton of time as you write future sales letters.
Get good at salescopy and you will be King of Your World,
“I have never worked a day in my life without selling. If I believe in something, I sell it, and I sell it hard.” – Estée Lauder