Pack of Savage Wolves Thrashes Infamous Online Marketer

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Today is Day 1 of my month focusing on Headlines.

If you missed yesterday’s blog, I discussed how David Garfinkel suggests zooming in on 1 copywriting fundamental each day for a month to hone your skills.

I’ve selected Headlines for the month of October 2018.

Ben Settle & Ken McCarthy

Today’s lesson comes from a podcast interview Ben Settle did with infamous Internet Marketing pioneer, Ken McCarthy. Here’s a link to the interview.

http://bensettle.com/blog/podcast/bsa79-1/

Ken is the founding father of online marketing as we know it. He gets a bad wrap from lots of people. He’s a bit infamous in the industry today because he claims he got us all started. A lot of people don’t like that. But it’s the truth. And he’s a genius!

So about half way through the interview, Ben asks Ken for some nuts and bolts and begins with Headlines. He asks Ken to discuss his psychology behind great headlines.

Here’s what Ken says:

“The more I think about it, the more I’m in sync with the kinds of things Gary Halbert said about Headlines and about copy in general.

“He said… ‘write your copy as if somebody put a gun to your head and said… if this doesn’t work, I’m gonna pull the trigger.’

“You may say… well that’s silly and you’re being dramatic. But he’s right!

“Even before technique, there’s got to be a crystal clear sense of seriousness in your mind about what you’re undertaking. It’s really a serious undertaking.

“The image I like to use when I’m writing copy is, I like to imagine that my prospect is running away from a pack of wild dogs. Around his neck is a necklace of raw pork chops. These dogs haven’t eaten in 10 days.

“My headline has to be good enough that when he runs but it, he’s gonna stop and go… ‘Wow! I wonder what that’s about?!’

“This may seem overly dramatic, but the place where I think you have to start is understanding how incredibly distracted… and probably overloaded… your prospect is.

“I mean, they’re flipping pages in a newspaper or they’re flipping pages in a magazine, or they’re flipping pages on the internet, and there’s no reason for them to stop and read anything you have to say. There’s just no reason at all.

“And so the headline is the reason why they should stop and commence reading.”

He goes on to talk about the old formula (which is also the name of a great opera by Verdi) A.I.D.A.

Attention
Interest
Desire
Action

He talks about each point in turn. I highly recommend you have a listen and take notes.

It’s fantastic. Ken is the real deal!

So that’s the lesson for today. Try getting that image of the wild dogs out of your mind. And spend a few minutes working on headlines that stop that poor guy dead in his tracks.

May your copy ever be melodic and harmonious!

Doug

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