Since 2001, my career choice has been direct response copywriting.
One of the reasons I committed to this career fully, as in NEVER going to work for someone else again… was this letter by AWAI.
In the beginning, it was a direct mail piece though… a variation of this online sales piece.
Both of those are good copywriting pieces to print, read and absorb if you’re interested by the way.
Anyhow… it’s been almost 12 years since I started… and I wanted to share some things that I do which kept the saw sharp, kept clients knocking at the door, and obviously… made my client’s various businesses much better.
Now, I’m writing copy under agreement with Agora Financial, which if you’re at all interested in this business… represents one of the titans in the direct marketing industry.
Here’s a short list, in no particular order… and nothing in great depth as each of these tips is a topic all by itself:
- Network… all the time, even when you’re busy… because you WON’T be busy if you stop.
- Read copy from successful, and unsuccessful promotions by various companies.
- To do #2, get yourself on a bunch of direct mail lists by publishers like Agora, Boardroom, and others. Simply ask them, and they will send you the best of the best.
- Get AWAI’s “Six Figure” Copywriting program, and absorb ALL of it. Also be sure to get the “Hall of Fame” book, which contains 50 of the classic pieces of direct response magic responsible for millions of dollars in sales.
- Go to http://www.marketingbullets.com and subscribe. Gary Bencivenga is a copywriting legend, and everything he says is gold… period, end of story.
- Find any Gary Bencivenga direct mail pieces (do a Google search), read them, write them yourself to “feel” what master-level copywriting writes like… and do it over again once a year.
- Get up at 530am every day.
- Get plenty of sleep.
- Take care of your health, mentally and physically.
- Get a social life, this is a solitary profession when you’re working… but doesn’t have to be outside of that.
- Eat right.
- Eat right.
- Eat right.
- Oh yeah… did I mention eat right?
- Do your business admin stuff… like taxes etc… or have someone do it for you.
- Make friends with other copywriters, they aren’t your competition… this industry needs more good copywriters, they are in severe shortage. Plenty of crappy ones though.
- Always Be Marketing.
- Read copywriting books, stick with the classics like Scientific Advertising, The Copywriter’s Handbook.
- Read marketing books.
- Did I mention reading? Do it all the time.
Well, there you are, 20 of some of my best pieces of advice for budding copywriters. Hope they help you along with your career.
Oh, one more, when someone does you a favor, or helps you along in your career… pay it forward.