Category Archives: copy writing

Headline and image results from Craigslist product

In this previous post I tried testing out 4 headlines, and 3 images for this Craigslist Hiring Course …..the goal was to see which headline and image would convert the highest.

Well, the results are in…..and there were some pretty clear winners!

For the image tests, here’s the winner:

It was the very first image I Photoshopped for this deal:

Most people (including me) thought this image would do the best. It’s by far the most descriptive of the group, and the least distracting.  The images with the Sumo kind of took away attention from the text.


Now for fun, take a quick guess which headline test would win….before you peek at the results:

  • HEADLINE 1: Hiring Sucks. Let Craigslist do it for you….here’s the scripts to use.
  • HEADLINE 2: Hire Someone by tomorrow. Use these Craigslist scripts…
  • HEADLINE 3: Craigslist hiring scripts. This is the new way to hire. No sifting through countless crappy candidates.
  • HEADLINE 4: Hire someone by tomorrow. Use these Craigslist scripts…
  • (notice I’m an idiot, and the 4th headline is a duplicate).  Smooth.

 

THE  WINNER BY A LONG-SHOT:
1st PLACE HEADLINE (#2):

Hire Someone by tomorrow. Use these Craigslist scripts…

2nd PLACE HEADLINE (#3): 
Craigslist hiring scripts. This is the new way to hire. No sifting through countless crappy candidates.

LAST PLACE HEADLINE (#1):
Hiring Sucks. Let Craigslist do it for you….here’s the scripts to use.
I originally thought Headline #1 would’ve won.  Turns out the “Hire someone by tomorrow” proposition for people was the best (Usually every Craigslist success story I’ve had happens within 17 hours of posting…..so this isn’t some “made up” headline).

 

 

 As for the Craigslist Hiring Course itself….I’m proud to se people have been pretty happy with it (aka getting results)!

I just happened to use Craigslist 2 days ago to post a job the old boring way. Lots of qualified/unqualified resumes to review and sort to go/no go folders…
Anyway, the course was great! Head spinning with ways to use GoogleDocs/Forms. Integration of GoogleForm, video, AIDA – simple to do and full of value for me!!!
–AppSumo Customer


Very interesting lesson. I think I have learnd 2/3 things (Typing with HTML, Using a video, using Google form).

And most of all, very attractive lesson. Usualy I get bord. But this was exciting….
I had the sensation to really learn something…

Please, continue revolutionize.
–Alex

 

Sincerely,
-Neville

Kopywriting Kourse Kase Studies

Every since I made that first Kopywriting Kourse….I’ve wanted to make a course with the acronym KKK.

I have no idea why, other than I thought it would be funny (and I’m not white so I might get away with it)  ;-)

I realllly wanted to do some sort of membership thing which would allow me to call it the Kopywriting Kourse Klub.  And it would have a signup pages that says JOIN THE KKK!!!

It was actually a subtle nod to this Simpsons sketch:

HA!  That makes me crack up every time!

Anyhow, here’s the story of how I ended up doing a product called the KKKs.  Yes…. ‘KKK’ with a lower-case ‘s’ at the end (I had a feeling sending 700,000 people an email saying “10 REASONS YOU SHOULD JOIN THE KKK !!” wouldn’t fly so well.

First I decided to do a “Kopywriting Kourse Part 2″ ….which would go more in depth about Kopywriting.  The original course does extraordinarily well to this day because within two hours it changes the way people write forever.

But while trying to put together a “Part 2″ ……it didn’t feel right. Most of the material was just re-hashed from the first one.

So then I got the idea to drill down to about 15 more specific subjects…such as:

  • Kopywriting for eCommerce sites.
  • Kopywriting for landing pages.
  • Kopywriting for brick n mortar businesses.
  • Kopywriting for real estate agents.
  • Kopywriting for blogs.
  • Kopywriting for iPhone apps.
  • Kopywriting for daily deal sites.
  • ….this list went on and on……

Well a lot of these were good (I really wanted to do a copywriting for iPhone apps or something hot like that)…..but they were TOO SPECIFIC.

In a perfect world I’d make every single one of those sub-categories of products, but that’s A LOT of work.

The next thing I did was put out a page for FREE COPYWRITING (you can no longer enter so don’t try) ….in order to get some real case studies.

Within a week we got 100+ qualified people who entered (some crap ones snuck in there too).
Quickly we realized that people had ALL KINDS OF BUSINESSES WHICH NEEDED HELP.

!! :: LIGHT BULB DINNGG :: !!

The “Kopywriting Kourse Kase Studies” was born.

So the whole premise was to watch as we take businesses and make them convert higher (aka get more sales$s) with only minutes of work (well….sometimes with about 1 hour of work).

  • Some of the businesses needed better copy to explain their product. We would re-write pages.
  • Some of the businesses were nearly flawless, and could only be improved with a video. We would make them a quick-n-dirty video.
  • Some of the businesses were totally shit to begin with, and needed to be re-thought or abandoned (no amount of great copywriting can help a shitty business for the longrun).
  • Some of the businesses needed to stop getting people to their website, and getting people from places like Craigslist with easy ads.  We made those ads (which ALWAYS work btw).

I also noticed the side-effect of this course was people would learn how to consult for other businesses very quickly!

After watching several kase studies you quickly notice patterns.

Every kase study (except one) in the kourse so far has increased conversion rates even with the very half-assed-and-quick improvements we made.

For the one that DIDN’T improve conversion rates (it was an email promotion I thought would TOTALLY KILL IT ….but ended up doing 25% worse), we explain why that happened.

It was one of those things I could’ve easily just “conveniently not included” but I wanted people to see a failure…because sometimes tests fail in the real world (WHO WOULD’VE THUNK IT)!

I almost wanted to change the name from “Kopywriting Kourse Kase Studies” to ” Learn how to con$ult for businesses by improving small things”  ….but didn’t want to people to think ANYONE could do it with such ease.

My intention was also to FIRST have everyone watch the original KopywritingKourse before watching this.

Anyhow, that’s how products we make come along.

I’ll shortly be putting out some products not STARING me but PRODUCED by me….we’ll see how it goes :-)
-Nev

Mixergy Kopywriting Interview

YEA!  On Mixergy!

We talk primarily about Kopywriting and how to get better immediately after watching the video.

BY THE WAY….I’ve worked hard over the years to keep this blog entertaining and edu-ma-cational…..
If you’ve got ANY value out of this blog ever….would you mind leaving a comment on this video??

Even a quick “This was awesome!” is great appreciated :-)

To leave a comment:
Step 1.) Go to the Mixergy interview with Neville

Step 2.) Scroll down under the transcript, there will be a comments section.

Step 3.) Write whatever you want, and click POST.  It’ll confirm how you want to post…and you’re DONE!

Step 4.) You get a big virtual-hug from me :-)
Thank you, and I hope you learn something!

KopyKourse Results

If you’re not a fan of exorbitant bragging, you may want to stop reading NOW:

Remember I mentioned this KopyWritingKourse I did on AppSumo that was meant to teach people to write better?

Wellllll turns out it was the best-selling deal on AppSumo ever.  (woot woot)!

In the last two months I already planned the Kourse out…..but about 70% of it was created about 8 days before it was released.

I’m proud it did so well because it took up alllll my time for that 8 days.  Twice I stayed up 2 days in a row working on the Kourse (plus I still had a full load of other work going on at the exact same time).

I had one objective for this KopyKourse:

Make absolutely damn sure people LOVE IT and LEARN FROM IT!

I didn’t really care about the pricing or how many copies were sold (well….I did, but it was a secondary thought).

A combination of listening to Earl Nightingale over the years and realizing this, I’ve been obsessed with the idea of making TOP quality stuff first….and worrying about selling a bunch later.  So I’m VERY pleased to see all this feedback :-)

These are just from Twitter alone:
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And here’s the bad reviews….although it’s all just copywriting people criticizing the headlines for the advertising.  Fortunately there has not been ONE ever remotely-bad review of the Kourse Kontent yet :-)

And just to end on a sweet note, here’s some more good reviews from Twitter!

Here’s some other random compliments I got from emails:

————————————————————–

Hey Neville,
Just wanted to say – amazeballs kourse!!!
I’ve always loved the AppSumo emails, and now I know why :)
Keep up the great work!
Kim - @kgardnr

————————————————————–

Hello Neville,
DUDE this wacky kopy stuff works. I watched the videos yesterday morning
and I used what I learned in my ad copy. I normally get one or two leads per
day from my ads, yesterday from 1-5 pm I got 3 leads and closed one deal
already plus my CTR gone up 18%.
PS. Feel free to use my full name and testimonial in public.
Fadi Andraus

————————————————————–

Or this comment by a longtime reader who took the course!

————————————————————–

I’m going through your Kopywriting Kourse right now.
I’m an Austin-based copywriter too. I’m fascinated by your story
in general, and I’m not ashamed to admit that even after years
of copywriting, I’m learning some stuff from you.
Rich M.

————————————————————–

Neville, you rocked on this course!!
Im on section 2 after watching section 1 twice!
You should take it down before my competitors get a
hold of it…Im watching the ticker anxiously.
Isaac Hill

————————————————————–

*This is a chat forwarded to me by Noah Kagan*

[9/20/11 4:56:03 PM] isaac: Just wanted to say thanks for the deal from Neville. Closed a client by changing my Kopy.

[9/20/11 4:57:01 PM] noah kagan: :)
[9/20/11 4:57:02 PM] noah kagan: now way
[9/20/11 4:57:04 PM] noah kagan: whats the story

[9/20/11 4:58:36 PM] isaac: I place ads all the time on classifieds. They are normally titled: Do you need a Logo Design? blah blah….then I changed the title to “Your Logo Sucks – Here Is Why!”
[9/20/11 4:58:48 PM] isaac: Massive click throughs.
[9/20/11 5:00:09 PM] isaac: Then I changed the boring copy about how great we are and replaced it with how a business normally waste hundreds/thousands on crappy design firms…then said: See how our clients get er’ done

KOPY KOURSE IS OUT!

The KopywritingKourse is finally out on AppSumo!

WOOT WOOT WOOT!

It’s not for sale anywhere else just yet….so literally TODAY ONLY is when you can get this.

I’ll add a Buy Now button to the Kourse after the AppSumo deal finishes on Thursday at midnight (9-15-2011 at midnight Central Time)….but it’ll be way more expensive.

I actually hate the fact that it’s selling for under $100.

Considering the effect it has on someone’s selling ability.

Hopefully it provides as much information to people as the Behind The Scenes of a Muse course I did (people freakin LOVED that course)….

ANYWHOOZLE…..
Check it out…
Send me feedback (nevmed@gmail.com)….
If you don’t like it there’s a 100% money-back guarantee (didn’t think you learned anything?  You can refund anytime before you die).

For now checkout this video….

It was was originally supposed to be a “short” intro to the KopyKourse with Noah Kagan (founder of AppSumo, #30 at Facebook and a bunch of other stuff….) but it turned into a long chat.  It was actually pretty fun, and we might do it more often if people like it :-)

P.S. Click here to get the Kourse.

The deal literally goes away at midnight on Thursday (Central Time), so snag it now!

How things get exaggerated in media

This headline just made me laugh so hard….(and don’t you DARE question why I even clicked on this link)!

This article in CNN claims something dramatic:

The popstar Justin Bieber Crashes His Ferrari!  OH NO!

But read the article and it shows how retardedly-exaggerated the headline is:

It reminds me of when I used to stock day-trade in college.  I’d wake up early every morning to watch the stock market open on CNBC…..and EVERYDAY it would flip-flop between either:

‘OOOMMMGGGG THE STOCK MARKET IS CRASSSSHIIINGGG!!!!”

-or-

“AMERICA IS SO GREAT WE HAVE THE BEST ECONOMY EVERRR STOCKS GOING UP UP UP!!!”

“Think before you believe”

Meeting the copywriting greats

I was all excited for this marketing event thingy at the lake….and the conclusion:

TOTALLY DAMN WORTH IT!

As you may (or may not) know, I’ve become a semi-famous copywriter in the last 4 months….and this event brings together some of the top marketers (many of whom started by writing sales copy) from around the world.

Naturally I learned a lot stuff in the seminar parts of the conference, but the real value is NOT JUST GETTING TO MEET the greats in an industry….

….but getting to hang out with them in lots of different personal settings.

THAT is where the real value sets in.

FOR EXAMPLE:
I was all excited to meet Joe Sugarman again at this conference, because since I heard of him I’ve:

  • Read everything by him
  • Studied his work
  • Copied the style of some of his work
  • Used the principles he teaches to make money for myself and others
  • Watched every YouTube video about him
  • Downloaded interviews etc….

His work has actually added a major element to the way I work….and it’s exciting to meet a personal hero of yours.

HOWEVER it’s getting to sit next to him on a 45 min bus ride to a restaurant, or go boating with him, hanging out at the pool, or simply sitting next to him at meals and getting to ask stuff you don’t hear about in his work.  This is where the networking happens…..because it’s not just “networking”…it’s actually becoming friends with someone.

Allllrriiigghhttyyy…..so here’s some of the highlights of the conference (well….the whole thing was a blast):

Here’s Joe Sugarman up on stage giving a talk:

Me with the great Joe Sugarman (and my Kopy shirt):

The first day of the conference, all 80+ people got on a big boat and went cruising around Lake Travis…complete with full indoor seating area, lunch buffet, three full-time jet skii’s and a wake boarding boat (not a bad day at a “boring conference” right?!):

Hanging out on a boat while Joe Polish goes tubing:

Hahah….Joe had a “tubing war” with a “hefty” Brit…..and judging by this picture I’d say he’s about to win!

We got treated to Joe speaking several times through the conference:

….and of course I got my obligatory picture:

I love all these pictures….but it’s more gratifying to hang out on a personal level with some with some other industry greats (some not so publicly-well-known) like Michael Fishman:

While hanging out at a restaurant by the lake I got a random shot of John Carlton and Joe Sugarman talking…..and with a little cropping and making the picture black & white it looks like they’re total badasses (or they’re asking “Why the fuck are you taking a picture of us?“)

Later on everyone got to hear John Carlton speak.  He had a lot of cool ways to come up with a definition of your bid-nazz as well as other advice:

…and of course, the obligatory picture with one of the greats (who was good friends with Gary Halbert….another idol of mine):

The final speaker for the whole conference was Bill Phillips.  I honestly don’t know toooo much about Bill other than he’s a HUGGGEEE figure in the fitness industry.  I’ve heard this a lot in the past….and could tell everyone was genuinely excited to meet him.

Apparently he just had major surgery on both his knees, and up till last week was confined to a wheel chair.  He can now walk a bit….but only with these massive full-leg braces.  They kept calling him The Bionic Man :-)

….and what did you expect….a PICTURE with him of course :-)

I also made sure I brought my copy of “Advertising Secrets of the Written Word” by Joe Sugarman to get it signed….here it is!

—————————————————————————————
—————————————————————————————

Fantastic learning experience, great getting to mingle with higher-ups, lots of fun…and completely worth it :-)

I’ve scanned and posted my notes from the conference below. I dunno how much REAL value you’ll get out of them since most of it comes from BEING THERE….but here ya go, enjoy!

Free (almost) Copywriting for you

I’m doing an experiment where I will be offering (almost) free copywriting.  This is GREAT for anyone about to send out an email or promotion to your list of customers!

Yes, there is a “buy now” button at the end of this post….but it’s there to prevent every weirdo with a website from taking me up on this.

SO HERE’S WHAT I’M GONNA DO:

If you have a testable page or email you’re sending out soon…..send me:

  1. The text you’ve already wrote (if you already have it).  This can be your monthly newsletter, a “welcome” email,  a specific product promotion (like I did here) etc…
  2. A little info about the offer and some benefits it has for your customers.  You can also call me and tell me instead of emailing everything about it.

…and I will re-write the email or page copy for you!

It will be written in my own style…so it will naturally be very different from what you traditionally send out.
——————————————————–

WHY WOULD YOU DO THIS?

Because when I sent out my first email like this, I was used to getting 2 orders per promotion I sent out….then I changed the style…..and got 120 orders in a day!  Read about it here.

I’ve also helped AppSumo make a lot more money through their emails using this style.

I’ve also helped on a lot of different projects which have made the promotions much more successful.

So if you want to try this “experiment” with me….sign up for this.
——————————————————–

HERE’S THE CATCH:

You have to promise me you’ll give me the data for the copy I write for you.

For example, Andrew Warner of Mixergy used copywriting stuff I taught him and sent me this screenshot with experiment data:

See…THIS kind of stuff helps me AND you.  If I write an email for you….I don’t really know if what I’m doing is correct or not.  Maybe the writing just plain sucks.

I need to know this stuff….so I’ll be asking for your data if you take me up on this offer.  This also further helps YOU figure out what “tone” to address your customers in.

If you want me to write something for you, but don’t want to send me the data….the price will be higher.  Contact me separately for that.
——————————————————–

SOME QUICK NOTABLES:

  • I prefer doing emails instead of webpages as those are easiest and quickest to measure.
  • I’ll be writing a max of 2-3 pages for you.  Don’t send me long-ass webpages to reformat unless you want to pay more.
  • You MUST send me the results data after sending.  Preferably split-tested stuff.  The ideal experiment would be something like: Someone sending out an email promotion they already wrote, then have me re-write it, then split-test the two against each other.
  • I can refuse any request.  If your request is just plain spammy or bad I cannot do this for you.  Or if I just think I can’t write a good piece for you….a prompt and courteous refund will be sent back to your PayPal account (and PayPal refunds fees, so you won’t lose a cent).
  • It will take me up to 3 days to do your copy (I’ll write them in “first come, first serve” order).
  • I’m taking a maximum of 10 people for this. Each piece takes hours…so this isn’t a profitable thing for me (remember…I’m going after your DATA here, not your money).

——————————————————–

SO IF YOU WANT PARTICIPATE:

Buy the offer through PayPal ($35) and it’ll immediately re-direct you with a page for more instructions of what to send me:

SOLD OUT

Email or call if you have any issues!  I’ll be taking down the Buy Now button soon as the 10-person quota hits.
Neville Medhora
n e v m e d @ g m a i l . c o m
7 1 3 . 3 0 1 . 1 5 4 6

Short Copy Vs. Long Copy

I was just interviewed by Andrew Warner of Mixergy for a video course on how to improve website or email copy….

…and one of my favorite things to say when he asked the question:

“What’s better: Short copy or long copy?”

I answered with the old adage:

Hahahaa!

You should be able to see the full course on AppSumo.com this Friday (5-6-2011).

I believe it will be 100% free for one day.

This will be really useful if you write, as it explains exactly how I made AppSumo a ton of money through emails.

How I made AppSumo a lot of money through emails

Two quick background stories then I’ll show how some clever writing made AppSumo an ass-ton of money:

———QUICK BACKGROUND STORY 1———

This guy, Noah Kagan is one of my close friends.  He was something like employee number 30 at Facebook and employee number 3 at Mint.com, then started a bunch of other companies.

His new thaang is AppSumo.com which is like “Daily Deals for Geeks”.  It’s like Groupon but for nerds like me.

Well recently Noah moved back to Austin, and he gets bored running his $(he-won’t-let-me-release-his-revenue-but-it’s-really-good) company from home, so he scooters on over to my place to work.

We sit around, work, geek out….and for some reason on Fridays we have a weekly tradition of drinking while we work.  It’s nerd heaven.

Whatever.

On to the next piece of this puzzle:

—————–

——————————

——————————————-

————————————————————

———QUICK BACKGROUND STORY 2———

Roughly 9 or 12 months ago I started taking a deep interest in copy writing.

Copy writing is the “art” of writing…..copy (aka WORDS).

Basically copy writing is used to “sell stuff better”.

Naturally this interests me since I:

1.) Write a lot (hence this blog).

2.) Own an online rave company that persuades people to buy stuff.

It was weird because I was staying up sometimes till 6am reading about this stuff and taking notes.  It somehow just….gelled with me.  I started reading everything I could about copy writing…and essentially bought every book I could about it.

I took notes.

I re-read things.

I re-read my own notes.

All the concepts all the gurus talked about were the EXACT OPPOSITE of what I was doing in my own business…so this angered and intrigued me.

I quickly remembered a sort-of-relatable quote about why so many people fail at losing weight:

“Reading about sit-ups, is not DOING sit-ups”

So with this guilt trip in my head, I decided to implement some of this copy writing junk…even though it was 100% the opposite thing I’d been doing with HouseOfRave.com.

To my utter-shock-surprise the first time I implemented all the copy writing rules I learned….the email blast I sent out pretty much sold out my inventory in two hours.

You can see the exact email I sent out that did this (warning: it’s password protected, so follow the instructions to get the el passwordo).

Fan-freakin-tastic for me eh?

Now let’s move on……

—————–

——————————

——————————————-

————————————————————

———LET’S TIE THOSE TWO STORIES TOGETHER———

So one day Noah’s geeking out at my place, and I get an email from AppSumo for some deal they were running.

It was a Grasshopper.com $100 credit or something like that…and I wanted it.

However I was blatantly disappointed by the email saying simply:

“$100 Credit for GrassHopper.com, the phone system for entrepreneurs!”

AppSumo was still selling a TON of the deals with this format…but after all my intensive copy writing studying, this type of short email seemed like an egregious injustice to AppSumo AND the email reader.

Naturally I yelled at Noah saying, “Dude….I bet a lot of people don’t realize the true value of Grasshopper….why don’t you EXPLAIN what it can DO FOR THE USER, then offer them the $100 off?”

Noah agreed.

I further started showing him the structure of good sales copy, and “How I could TOOOTTALLY do better.”

He put me up to it.

I actually WANTED to do some of the emails in exchange for collecting the performance data.  Where else could I test out several emails a week to 50,000 people?

Anywhozit….I started preparing the emails 2 days before each deal came out, and….

HERE’S WHAT HAPPENED:

The first deal was something of a crappy deal.  Now I don’t mean it was a BAD deal….but it was going to SELL CRAPPY because it was extremely niche based.  It was a deal for a service that sends you 4 sets of matched fonts per month.

Now NO ONE BUT HARDCORE DESIGN NERDS would buy this….in fact, they all know you can get thousands of fonts online for free.  This was a carefully curated collection of fonts, and only hardcore graphics designers would buy something like that….to make it an even harder sell, it was a lifetime membership costing something like $125.

With the old AppSumo email style, this deal had no chance of stellar sales.

But then Enter Copy-Writing-Minded-Neville:

I quickly realized a VERY specific deal would exclude tens of thousands of people in this case…so I tried applying copy writing techniques to neutralize that.  Basically, being open and honest about it.

It started out like this:

If the names “Lucida Sans Unicode” or “Courier New” don’t mean anything to you, go ahead and close this message.

You see my friend, today we’re reaching out only to the community of people known as font whores.

You know who you are!

If your knees go weak when I whisper, “GARAMOND.”
…you might be one of em.

Right off the bat this doesn’t necessarily sound like a typical marketing message.  In fact, it’s mildly offensive and quite sexually suggestive.

But you know what….PEOPLE READ IT.

People emailed us back saying the email had NOTHING to do with their line of work, but they still enjoyed reading the email.

We also got people saying they HATED the email and that it was misogynistic and (insert more whiny-bitch-complainer examples)…..you get the point.

SO THEN WHAT HAPPENED??

To Noah’s surprise, this particular deal TOOK OFF!  It was like one of those movies where the ugly girl puts on some makeup, let’s her hair down and wears a gown and is suddenly hot.

So what did this mean?

It means I just made AppSumo a bunch of MONAAAY!!:

Hooray right?  I just made SOMEONE ELSE a bunch of money!

So that was pretty damn cool.  We turned the ugly girl into the “belle of the ball” with the power of of the pen.

Naturally the Chief Sumo wanted me to do the next email, then the next, then the next etc….

Some funny things happened in the next few email send-outs:

  • Every email did EXCEEDINGLY well compared to past emails. Only difference: Good copy.
  • The emails did piss off a small subsection of people, and the unsubscribe rates went up 1% on certain emails.  1% is actually BELOW industry standards…so we’re all good.
  • We got people saying they LOVED reading the emails and how cool they were.
  • We got some people saying they LOATHED the emails (these for the most part were whiny-bitch-complainers who never bought anything anyway).
  • One of the emails (that I spent a lot of time on) got the HIGHEST CONVERSION RATE EVER for any AppSumo email…..or ANY email I’ve ever heard of in my life.  A normal “good-converting” email is usually at 1% conversion (meaning 1% of the people it goes to actually BUY something directly from that email).  This particular email had over 10% conversion. If you understand what I’m talking about, that’s INCREDIBLE.

So that’s how I made AppSumo a ton of moolah….and learned something in the process.

I should teach a class on this stuff…..