This article brings you the marketing wisdom of John Caples, one of the true early masters of copy writing. I was recently rereading Caples’ ‘Tested Advertising Methods.’ One chapter in the book jumped out as so practical and so applicable to your on-line marketing efforts that I had to bring you the highlights here.
The chapter was titled ‘Twenty Ways to Increase Selling Power of Copy.’ The quote above covers just one of his twenty ways. The material was written decades ago, yet the information is truly timeless. You want to improve the sales copy of your website? Then listen up. These twenty points will help you do just that.
- Present tense, second person
- Use subheads
- Put captions under illustrations
- Use a simple style of writing
- Choose simple words
- Give free information
- Selling copy versus style copy
- Arouse curiosity
- Make your copy specific
- Use long copy
- Write more copy than is necessary to fill the space
- Overstatement copy versus understatement
- Avoid helping your competitors
- Use mail order methods in direct mail advertising
- Avoid trick slogans
- Get help from others
- Do not say that a salesperson will call
- Study the selling copy in mail order catalogs
- Make every advertisement a complete sales talk
- Urge the reader to act
Now, Caples says a lot more on each of these bullet points in his book and you really should read ‘Tested Advertising Methods’ if you haven’t already. If you have read it, read it again. His advice was valid fifty years ago and will still be valid fifty years from now.