145 episodes

This podcast reveals the insider secrets of advertising copy that makes money.
Insights into the highly profitable world of direct response marketing.
Hosted by the World's Greatest Copywriting Coach, David Garfinkel.

Copywriters Podcast David Garfinkel

    • Business

This podcast reveals the insider secrets of advertising copy that makes money.
Insights into the highly profitable world of direct response marketing.
Hosted by the World's Greatest Copywriting Coach, David Garfinkel.

    Powerful Takeaways From Scientific Advertising

    Powerful Takeaways From Scientific Advertising

    When I first started learning how to write copy, everybody told me “read Scientific Advertising.” It’s a book written at the beginning of the 20th century, over 100 years ago, by Claude Hopkins, who many consider the father of direct-response copywriting.

    I did read the book. I read it again. In fact, I read it 15 times.

    For today’s show, I reviewed it. This is part of our Old Masters series.

    I pulled out five powerful takeaways and we’re going to talk about them and how they apply to copywriting today. In the show notes on copywriterspodcast.com, you’ll find a link to get the book on Amazon.

    All I can say is, it’s well worth it. One of the most valuable books I’ve ever read.

    Here are the key takeaways. Much more detail on the podcast itself:

    1. The only purpose of advertising is to make sales

    “Advertising is multiplied salesmanship.” Ask this question about your sales copy: “Would it help me sell them if I met them in person?”

    2. The right headline can increase sales by 5 to 10 times.

    You can use your headline to target a particular type of prospect. The trick is to call out the type of qualified prospect that there are the most of.

    3. Psychology is the gas in the engine — and the GPS — of all advertising.

    We can’t actually read people’s minds. But we can keep track of all their different behaviors. And the more specific things we know about what people respond to, and how they behave, the better our copy will perform.

    4. The more specific you are, the more people will believe you.

    It’s always a bad idea to lie about specifics. But it’s always a good idea to include as many meaningful specifics as you can.

    “Platitudes and generalities roll off the human understanding like water from a duck… [but] the weight of an argument can often be multiplied by making it specific.”

    5. How to guarantee your advertising WON’T make a profit.

    You can lose a lot of money by trying to change people’s habits. “It is a very shrewd thing to watch the development of a particular trend, the creation of new desires. Then at the right time offer to satisfy those desires.”

    Link to Scientific Advertising on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/0844231010


    Maxwell Sackheim’s Magic List - 2

    Maxwell Sackheim’s Magic List - 2

    Today we return to our new series called “Old Masters,” and we’re going to look at another list from Maxwell Sackheim’s book, “My First 65 Years In Advertising.”

    Sackheim started in direct mail in 1906. In 1927 he was a co-founder of a highly successful direct-mail business, The Book-of-the-Month Club.

    He wrote a very famous ad with the headline, “Do You Make These Mistakes In English?”, which ran for 40 years and was always profitable.

    The list we’re going over today is called “Seven Deadly Direct Mail Mistakes.” But don’t worry if you don’t do direct mail yourself. It’s based on hard-won wisdom and it applies just as well today with Facebook ads and funnels as it does to actual direct mail.

    (Seven deadly Direct Mail mistakes)

    1. Failing to Give The Reader a Good Reason to Open Your Envelope

    This applies to ALL forms of direct marketing. Almost all forms involve more than one step — whether the first step is opening the envelope, responding to a print ad, or clicking on a Facebook ad. Be sure that you’re giving your prospect a strong reason to take the FIRST step.

    Cheat Sheet Question #1: Did I give me prospect a good enough reason to take the the first step?

    2. Failing to Give The Reader a Good Reason for Reading Your Mailing

    Every step of the way through your funnel, make sure you give your prospect a good reason to read it and move on to the next step.

    Cheat sheet question #2: Did I give my prospect a good enough reason to read this copy and move on to the next step?

    3. Making Trivial Tests

    Important tests are of major elements that can really affect response. Headline, lead, offer, pricing, for example. Test the things that are most likely to make a real difference in response.

    Cheat sheet question #3: Make sure you’re testing elements of your copy that are likely to make an important difference.

    4. Making Sales, Not Customers

    It costs a lot to acquire a customer. Why WASTE that money when you can turn it into profit by making additional offers to each customer?

    Cheat sheet question #4: What am I doing to increase the lifetime of each customer, and extend the lifetime value?

    5. Believing that People Won’t Read Long Letters

    “People read long books, take long trips, watch long movies and plays, and read long letters — provided they justify the time. They must be interesting. They must promise a profit, in entertainment, in money, in enlightenment.”

    Cheat sheet question #5: Am I providing all the information my prospect needs—and doing it in a compelling way?

    6. Letting the List Go to the Last
    “The reasons many mailings fail is that they are directed to too many wrong people.” Same is true for ads and other types of copy that are targeted wrong.

    Cheat sheet question 6: Am I targeting the right people?

    7. Forgetting that Your Letters Are You

    “Every letter you send is your personality on paper. Whether you mail one or one million, each letter tells who YOU are.”

    Cheat sheet question #7: Am I writing to my customers like I would talk to a friend?


    Maxwell Sackheim’s Magic List - 1

    Maxwell Sackheim’s Magic List - 1

    Today we’re starting a new series called “Old Masters,” where we find wisdom from some of the Founding Fathers of copywriting and see how we can apply them today. On this show, we’re going to look at a list from Maxwell Sackheim’s book, “My First 65 Years In Advertising.”

    Sackheim started in direct mail in 1906. In 1927 he was a co-founder of a highly successful direct-mail business, The Book-of-the-Month Club.

    He wrote a very famous ad with the headline, “Do You Make These Mistakes In English?”, which ran for 40 years and was always profitable.

    Today the list we’ll go over is called “Seven Deadly Advertising Mistakes.” There’s nothing obsolete about anything on this list. And I’ve added a lot of information for each item on the list so you can put the information to work right away.

    1. Failing to Give The Reader a Reason to Read Your Ad

    You need to make a promise that your reader will find worth reading the rest of your ad.

    Cheat Sheet Question #1: Did I give my reader a good enough reason to read the ad?

    2. Using Headlines That “Whisper Sweet Nothings”

    You need to get readers excited about something that’s important to them, in a direct and powerful way.

    Cheat Sheet Question #2: Does your headline reach out and grab the reader?

    3. Using Pictures that Do Not Talk

    Any picture you use needs to tell a story, by itself, that furthers the purpose of the ad itself.

    Cheat Sheet Question #3: Is the picture so good that it could partially or fully make the ad work by itself?

    4. Giving In To The Curse of Cleverness

    If you try to show how entertaining you are more than how much you know and care about a problem the prospect has, and how you can solve it… you’re making a deadly mistake.

    Cheat Sheet Question #4: Am I making my prospect laugh… or am I locking in my prospect’s serious attention?

    5. Going Around Robin Hood’s Barn

    A lot of advertising makes readers jump through mental hoops to understand what it’s trying to sell you. Make yours a smooth glide in a straight line.

    Cheat Sheet Question #5: How easy is it to follow my pitch all the way through?

    6. Leavin’ ‘em Dangling

    Always give your reader something to do. Otherwise, risk losing them forever.

    Cheat Sheet Question #6: Did I give my prospect something specific to do?

    7. Using “Yackety-Yack” Copy

    Don’t waste your reader’s time. Make everything you say interesting, useful, intriguing, or curiosity-provoking.

    Cheat Sheet Question #7: Am I providing interesting value every step of the way?


    Billionaire Business Secrets

    Billionaire Business Secrets

    Sara’s dad was a lawyer. After she finished college, she wanted to go law school, but her Legal SAT scores weren’t good enough. So she tried stand-up comedy, but that didn’t catch fire.

    So, she became a billionaire instead. The youngest woman billionaire ever, according to Forbes magazine in 2009.

    A few weeks ago, I saw that Sara Blakely, founder of Spanx, had a class on entrepreneurship up on MasterClass.com. I was curious and so I watched a few sessions.

    Not only was it the best program on business I’ve seen on MasterClass, but it’s also the best program for copywriters and entrepreneurs I’ve ever seen by a “big name” in business. Sara Blakely is a gifted teacher as well as a standout entrepreneur.

    I picked three lessons from the treasure trove of suggestions and ideas that make up the class. The reason I picked each one is that it would help copywriters as well business owners, and two of the three are things we haven’t talked about nearly enough on this podcast.

    But everything she had to say was unique, valuable and interesting.

    So here’s something really ironic about Sara Blakely. She said right on her Masterclass that for the first 16 years of her business, she didn’t do any advertising. None. Zero. Zip. Nada.

    So why are we devoting an entire show to her?

    Here’s why:

    What she DID do, to get the business up and running -- and what she continues to do on a daily basis -- are so valuable that they really transcend copywriting and spending money on ads. They are at the core essence of what we do as copywriters and business owners, which is to GET and KEEP customers.

    It’s also nice to get advice from someone who is actually running a huge business, rather than making their living running around sharing their theories about how the world might work and making their living doing seminars. In contrast, Sara’s making her living serving customers and innovating new products for her business.

    We cover three tips. You’ve probably heard them before, but Sara has a unique take on them… and, she’s made them work to literally build a business from scratch. Which gives them extra weight.

    Her first tip: Protect Your Mindset.

    Sara shared a very personal story about how she protected her idea from the criticism of others until she was ready to share it… and how she knew she was ready.

    We talk about how to protect your mindset so your ideas don’t die abornin’.

    Second Tip from Sara: Create Big Ideas

    Sara admits she takes idea-creation very seriously, and she devotes time every day to doing it.

    We’ll share her method and talk about what everyone has in common when you need to create big ideas, as well as what’s unique to each person.

    Third Tip from Sara: Connect… Really Connect

    Probably the most underrated asset in business is the act of deeply connecting with your customers. Sara turned her ability to do that into a net worth of more than one billion dollars in less than 10 years.

    We explore how copywriters - as well as business owners - can leverage this underrated asset themselves.


    An Info-Products Pro Tells All, With Richard Miller

    An Info-Products Pro Tells All, With Richard Miller

    Our guest today really gets around. Richard Miller is founder of Mission Control Studios in Phoenix. Have you ever heard of David DeAngelo and a product called Double Your Dating? David’s real name is Eben Pagan, and Richard helped him with every seminar and info-product. In the copywriting space, Richard’s worked with me and helped John Carlton with all the video in version 2.0 of the Simple Writing System.

    Richard has a vast array of experience in the world of seminars, video, and info-products. He even has a project he’s working on that got 1 million views the first day it was on YouTube… and this project gives new meaning to the term “killer content!”

    Here are the questions he answered:

    1. What is the most important thing people need to know when it comes to creating video content/infoproducts?

    2. Why should you listen to your producer, especially if you know more about your content than they do?

    3. What did you learn from Dean Graziosi about creating best-selling info products?

    4. You have an unusual info-product you’re working on with Sammy the Bull. Tell us about it.

    5. If someone wants to work with you, what can you do for them and what’s a good next step?

    Richard’s email: richard@tetpros.comDownload.

    Getting Paid a Percentage

    Getting Paid a Percentage

    In the opening of the movie “Echo In the Canyon,” the late Tom Petty is showing Bob Dylan’s son, Jakob, a Rickenbacker 12-string electric guitar. He plays about six chords, stops, and says, “You can’t afford the rest.” And laughs.

    What’s underneath the joke is: They’re making a movie, and if he went much further, under music industry rules, the movie-makers would have to pay a large royalty for whatever song Petty was playing if it went on long enough.

    It’s definitely a joke because there are many full songs throughout the movie, which I thought was excellent, by the way.

    But it brings to mind an important question: What’s the story about royalties, or percentage-of-sales payments, for copywriters? We hear about them all the time but for most people, they’re a huge mystery.

    I have some experience with percentage deals myself, and I have a lot of clients who do as well. So I thought we could take a deep dive into this topic today.

    • What they are and how they work — or how they’re supposed to work (big picture)

    • The publishing industry (includes film, TV, music, as well as books and newsletter publishers)

    • Everyone else

    • The type of client you want to do a percentage deal with

    • The type of client you really DON’T want to do a percentage deal with

    • The best type of client to do a percentage deal with

    Some questions:

    1. If it looks like a good deal, what’s a fair percentage to charge?

    2. Does taking a percentage change your fee?

    3. How do you know when you’re ready to do this?


Customer Reviews

Grzegorz "Greg" Janiszewski ,

Listen to this or try to be good copywriter

This is just insane what you guys are doing here! I am subscribed to an online copywriting course in my country (paid course) and... I consider quitting! Since I listen to you I get such a massive anmount of knowledge, that this is even better than paid courses. And your podcast is FOR FREE!
If I had to pick just one favourite thing about Copywriters Podcast it would be David and his unique ability to put complex ideas in such easy way, that I not only understand it - it becomes natural thing to me just in one second! Click and BAM - my brain starts to get lots of great ideas!


Top Podcasts In Business

Listeners Also Subscribed To