Small Business Marketing: 11 Steps To Writing Good Ads and Copy

Jimmy Vee

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Putting words on paper that cause people to take a desired action is the most profitable skill a small business owner or sales professional can learn. I often get asked if there are any secrets to banging out effective copy.

The biggest secret I can tell you is to use a formula.

Trying to write killer sales letters and ads from scratch is like trying to thread a needle with a garden hose. It’s damn near impossible.

Here are some steps you can use to write effective copy.

1: Answer these questions first and use the answers when writing your letter/ad.

WHO are you writing to?
WAYS you’ll prove what you say to be true?
REASONS they won’t take action?
OFFER (what is the call to action including your guarantee)?

2: Get a stack of 3x5 cards and list every single feature of your product – one to a card (you should use lots of cards)

3: For each feature write out as many benefits as you can think of for that feature – one per card.

4: Choose a copy formula: Here are two great ones.

A. I. D. A. Attention, Interest, Desire, Action Problem, Agitate, Solution

5: Choose a headline. The best way to do this is to create a headline swipe file. Every time you see a really good headline you should write it on a 3x5 card. Then you can pull out your headline cards and just insert your material in place of what’s there. The best places to find good headlines are on solicitations you get in the mail, newspapers and magazines. Look for ads that run week after week – those ads are working.

6: Using your copy formula, Feature/Benefit cards and your target questions write your letter/ad.

TIP: Just write – everything and anything that comes to mind. Let your emotions flow. Be real and don’t round your copy or try to sound like someone you aren’t. Don’t try to write professional or stuffy. Don’t stop writing till you get every thing down on paper.

7: Let the letter sit for 24 hours.

8: Edit the copy

9: Read the letter to someone out loud. Clean up any spots you stumble over and make sure the person you read it to can understand the message you are trying to convey.

10: Edit the letter again

11: Mail yourself a mock up or paste it in the newspaper or magazine you are going to run it in.

Jimmy Vee and Travis Miller are the authors of “The Ten Tall Tales Of Traditional Advertising That Cost You Tons" and their newest release, “The Small Business Owner’s Guide To The Galaxy: Jim & Travis’s Super-Stellar, Out Of This World, Step-By-Step Guide To Generating Leads, Attracting Customers and Making Sales. " Get FREE small business marketing tips, shortcuts and secrets - RIGHT NOW - at The Small Business Marketing Resource Site!


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