As a direct marketer, you should understand what makes direct response copywriting great. And to do so, you must study the best copywriting available. But where do you start? As a direct response copywriter trained by the AWAI, I have found two sources that offer three great direct response copywriting examples for direct marketers to study.
The first source is Swipe-Worthy, an online collection of copywriting examples. You will find copies of the most profitable marketing campaigns ever created. As well as insights on marketing, conversion, and consumer psychology. It’s a reliable source of marketing information.
The second source is the AWAI Hall of Fame: Great Selling Ideas from 50 Super-Successful Direct Mail Letters and Direct Response Ads (non-affiliate link). Edited by John Forde and published by American Writers and Artists Inc., this compilation gives you the best direct mail letters and advertisements that generated a lot of money. You’ll find work from Gene Schwartz, Martin Conroy, and a host of other successful direct response copywriters.
If you’re looking to expand your knowledge on direct response copywriting, or inspiration for a future project, I suggest you get your hands on the AWAI Hall of Fame.
How Chinese medicine helps burn disease out your body by Gene Schwartz
Gene Schwartz wrote this letter to promote Stephen Chung M.D. and his health philosophy. Dr. Chung believed that you can heal yourself using just your body.
Schwartz first published this ad in 1979 and was a control for two decades. According to Schwartz…
“Burn Disease Out of Your Body Laying Flat on Your Back, Using Nothing More Than the Palm of Your Hand” are not my words. They’re the author’s words. I wrote seven paragraphs of this letter. But I had the ability to let this man speak for himself. And he still speaks to millions of Americans. We are mailing more in January than we mailed for the first eight years of the mailing. And it goes against very, very strong, strong, strong wonderful copy.” – Gene Schwartz on “Burn Disease Out of Your Body Laying Flat on Your Back, Using Nothing More Than the Palm of Your Hand”
The letter is a splendid example of how to write benefit-oriented copy. The headline presents the benefits right away. And it lets the reader know they don’t have to do much to obtain those benefits.
The body of the letter then delivers on the promise of the headline. It takes you through the why’s and how’s a series of massages that can help you combat a series of body ailments. But instead of telling you, the letter makes sure to show you how these Chinese techniques can better your quality of life.
The CTA is quite simple – to order the book The Complete System of Self-Healing. But it includes an irresistible premium: A free report on how to lose weight by rubbing your belly! Who doesn’t want to lose weight that way? I do!
You can write a letter like the one above by focusing on the big picture. Present a huge promise in the headline and show how the reader can make it happen in the body. Then make use of testimonials, credentials, and explanations to help the reader become comfortable with your exotic concept.
The Admiral Byrd Expedition Letter by Hank Burnett
This legendary letter, written by Hank Burnett, promotes a 26-day expedition through the world’s polar regions. The letter’s offer is a spot on the expedition for $10,000. They had 60 spots available, and that letter sold all of them – bringing in $600,000 with minimum investment.
The lead paragraphs in the letter achieve two goals. The first goal is identifying the market (wealthy people who love adventures). The second goal is telling a delightful story.
From there, each paragraph adds an element of prestige to the event. The letter makes you feel like you’d be an American hero for taking part in the event.
And the CTA carries a sense of urgency while using an element of reverse psychology. It asks you to take your time in making the decision but reminds you that there are few spots available. So, if you want in, you must reserve your spot ASAP.
Read this letter to learn a lesson in exclusivity. And to discover how copywriters like Hank Burnett can turn a product or service into a larger-than-life event.
The Granada Letter by Thompson Cigars
This letter, published by Thompson Cigars, promoted the Granada brand of cigars. And this is a letter you definitely need to check out.
Not only does the letter present a very exclusive offer with an enticing discount (pack of 100 for less than ($17). It also brings an element of entertainment – telling you an engaging story that feels like you’re talking to the author at a bar while enjoying your drink of choice.
You should read this letter to learn how to bring a personal tone to your marketing. It can help you write copy that is friendly and joyful, but confident and persuasive at the same time.
If you sell products that carry a sense of intimacy with them (like cigars), this letter is a must-read for you.
Starting today, you should study direct response copywriting to discover what works and what doesn’t. Read Burn Disease Out of Your Body Laying Flat on Your Back, Using Nothing More Than the Palm of Your Hand to learn how to present HUGE promise. Read Admiral Byrd to understand how to make your offer seem larger-than-life. And read The Granada to find out how to make your marketing more entertaining – without overshadowing the offer.
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