Copywriting The Right Way Vs The Scary Way

I was perusing Terry Dean’s online business blog today and happened across a hilarious post called “Do You Have HyperCopyitis? ”  It’s not only funny, but it really drives home a point that is so prevalent in copywriting all over the net.

In a very witty way, Terry points out how such an overwhelming number of sales letters are so hyped up that it’s pathetic.  For example, the typical Paypal or Clickbank statements showing thousands of dollars a minute being cranked out because of their super secret system.  Yeah right… I always suspect, whether right or wrong, that those kinds of images are Photoshopped.

Other typical things like the yellow highlighter in every other paragraph, the eighty kazillion exclamation points scattered throughout the copy, and the endless run-on sentences which exhaust your breath, much like the one you’re reading now. 😛

The main point, I believe, that Terry is making in his post is that many copywriters, or those of us who write our own copy, fail to connect with our target audience.

These hyped up sales letters have all the “cool” emotional trigger words, the neat little graphics, the fancy buy button with the cool check box (Yes Jack! Count me in!!!) next to it.  You can hype your product to sound like the biggest thing since sliced bread, but are you really relating to your prospect, or just shouting at him… Buy! Buy! Buy it nowwww!!!

Suppose instead of talking at your visitors, we connected with them instead?  Hmmm.  Imagine  empathizing with your visitors instead.  Gently and indirectly persuading them that your product is just the perfect fit to solve the problem they have.  Not because you jammed your offer down their throat, but because they drew their own conclusions based on how you connected with them.   Because you kept them hanging on to your every word, as one paragraph leads to the next, guiding them down a pathway straight to the buy button.

Terry Dean has interviewed Shaune Clarke, a copywriter who emotionally connects with his audience without gimmicks, exaggeration, or swipe files, as Terry puts it.

What’s even more amazing to me is that Terry Dean has done a 70 minute interview with Shaune Clarke revealing some of his most valued secrets.  This is an amazing interview which is in mp3 format AND transcribed into a .pdf (Adobe Acrobat) file as well, so that you can refer to either format!

How much you ask?  Only $10… You know I jumped on this one!  Terry Dean is known as one of the good guys & when you buy from Terry, you’ll always get amazing value.  This is easily the best $10 I’ve ever spent and you can bet I’ll be modifying my own web copy to test the results.

Edit Update Terry Dean informed me (in this post’s comments) that the Interview with Shaune Clarke is now at $15.  As I elaborated in my follow-up comment,  this is $15 well spent many times over.  Even if you have to skip that pizza & coke with your buddies, or pawn that guitar, get this valuable information now.  The price may go up again soon.

Don’t let the affiliate link at the end of the post fool you.  I was really inspired by & believe in this product.  In fact, if you don’t wish to use my affiliate link, then simply go out to and buy it direct.

If you want to find out more about this, just click on my semi-blatant affiliate link now.

11 thoughts on “Copywriting The Right Way Vs The Scary Way”

  1. To be an effective writer even on sales , you should be emotionally connected to the audience, Terry is really great she knows what her audience feeling and that is the target.

  2. I loved this post. It sums up everything I have ever thought about when faced with the dreaded ‘sales letter’. Any site I come across that is basically just line upon line of bright text in different fonts displaying an overly exuberant helping of punctuation exclamations results is a scream from yours truly. Does anyone actually like them? Do they actually work? Personally if I am being handed the hard sell I switch off straight away.

    Just give me the benefits and let me make up my own mind.

    It is definitely worth reiterating that there is only one golden rule when writing any type of sales copy – know and understand your reader. It’s so simple.

  3. Thanks for the comment Sally. Especially when you’re marketing to other marketers, it amazes me that the “hard sell” technique is even considered.

    I think since cheezey sales letters are everywhere, inexperienced people are more likely to model after them with the desire to learn the “lingo” rather than really try to relate to the audience.

    To make an analogy, the big mistake beginner web designers make is that they tend to load their website up with every “cool” thing they can think of. Tons of Flash scripts, the javascript snow falling, animated gifs everywhere, etc. because they want to get all that experience under their belt in one shot… LOL.

    This same thing seems to happen when learning copywriting. People add it all, the good, the bad & the ugly, thinking that these first attempts will look like something written by a seasoned copywriter.

    How do I know all this? I’ve been there, done that. 😛


  4. Thank you for your links!

    By the way, that is a great title on this post which grabbed my attention in my link sites.

    Just a note that the price has increased to the really expensive level of $15 for the interview now. It’s worth way more than this, but I will continue to keep it low (although it could go up slightly more).

    To Rachel: By the way, I’m a guy.

    Terry Deans last blog post..Do You Have HyperCopyitis?

  5. LOL! I often suspected those PayPal statements of having been Photoshopped too! About a year ago I found a website by some bitter guy who made it his mission to call out these scheming marketers. It was really amusing, apparently he knew a few of them personally, I’ll have to see if I can find the url, I’ll post it if I can find it.

  6. Thanks for the comment & for stopping by Terry! I’ll pass along the update on the price. At $15 it’s an unbelievable value. Anyone who understands the multiplicity value of just a single percentage point increase on a conversion rate would find this undeniable.

    I believe that applying the information contained in this interview could easily accomplish this at the very minimum. Since the launch of XinglaPro in June, it’s been converting at an impressive 6.7%. I’m going to see if I can crank that even higher with what I’ve learned so far.

    Thanks again Terry for offering such a great product for practically free!


  7. I am always leery of anything that’s too “hyped up”…the phrase “if it seems to good to be true it probably is” always pops into my mind. I just can’t take anybody with all the “secrets” seriously…most of the secrets aren’t secrets at all if you do your research – and actually work, that’s part of it too 🙂

    Chelles last blog post – Keyword Luv

  8. Hey Jack,

    I listened to the audio several times over too! Very useful stuff.

    Did you know he does copywriting coaching too?

    As a FYI, he is doing a free tele-conference coming up this Wednesday on September 10, 2008 8pm EST. He’s going to help three copywriters craft their own USP (unique selling proposition).

    Check it out here:

    – Colin

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