Should you be selling the product, or the story?

Sheaffer pen cap

Imagine walking into someone’s home, looking around and seeing a family photo on the wall.

Not a posed family portrait. More of a goofy shot. Not terribly well composed. Maybe even a little bit out of focus.

Seeing you study the picture, your host comes over and says, “Oh my goodness, let me tell you the story behind that photo!”

It isn’t the photo that has the true power… it’s the story behind the photo.

It’s the story that carries the true emotional punch.

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The future belongs to short-form copywriters.

traditional newspaper with picture of smartphone

It’s tricky making predictions.

But I’m pretty sure there’s going to be a lot more short-form copywriting in the future.

I believe this to be true for two reasons… one is physical, and the other is more connected to our changing lifestyles.

Let’s start with the physical reason.

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The true secret to great copywriting is…

Raw energy when writing copy

If you’re a student of copywriting, you’ve likely come across various experts promising to share their secrets to success.

A lot of these promises come in the form of methods, templates, roadmaps, strategies… and so on.

In other words, “Follow this proven process and you’ll be a super-successful copywriter. Six figures and beyond!”

Get the book, course or coaching program, and you’ll have access to their amazing, super-powerful, 10-step method.

I’m not saying these “follow-the-process” methods don’t ever work…

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3 Benefits of writing better subheads.

woman at desk writing with a laptop computer

Hopefully, you pay a lot of attention to writing your headlines.

I do.

I typically go through several drafts until I’m reasonably happy with a headline.

Headlines are important, because a good one captures attention and inspires people to start reading the body text. Bad headlines don’t.

Truth be told, I’m a bit of a headline nerd. I created an entire course on how to write them.

But… there’s more.

What about those subheads?

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Tell a simple story that engages your readers emotionally.

woman wearing mask in store

It doesn’t have to be a big, dramatic story.

It can be something simple.

Like how my wife cried when she walked to the local corner store to buy chips, but realized she didn’t have a mask with her. So she couldn’t go in.

Her tears weren’t about the chips.

We know that.

Her tears were about the relentless grind of living through a pandemic, where something as simple as buying chips is sometimes out of reach.

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When you’re lost in the forest, and a digital marketing expert offers to help…

If you have a business, or you advise or write for business, the web can be an amazing, but thoroughly confusing place.

Whether you want to learn more about email marketing, sales funnels, social media or chatbot marketing, there are a thousand experts ready and waiting to help you.

The trouble is, which experts should you follow? Which one teaches or offers the approach that will work best for your audience?

And, of course, you have to figure out which are the true experts, and which are the weekend gurus who likely know less than you do.

Here is my take on this, in three steps.

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