Content Marketing http://feed.informer.com/digests/WGN4I7XP9X/feeder Content Marketing Respective post owners and feed distributors Tue, 07 Feb 2017 11:31:52 +0000 Feed Informer http://feed.informer.com/ These 5 Writers Won the First Copyblogger Essay Contest … http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/52033745/0/copyblogger~These-Writers-Won-the-First-Copyblogger-Essay-Contest/ Copyblogger urn:uuid:7141e7a8-ceec-674f-a535-b73fd64e6c72 Thu, 12 Dec 2013 13:00:00 +0000 <p>250 words is not a lot of words. It barely fits on a single sheet of paper. So when you answer the question “Why is online authority essential?” you must be lean and creative. Who among you did it best? Picking the winners Jerod and I worked our way through all 272 entries. If every<p><a class="more-link" href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/52033745/0/copyblogger~These-Writers-Won-the-First-Copyblogger-Essay-Contest/" rel="nofollow">[ Continue Reading... ]</a></p><p></p> </p><p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/52033745/0/copyblogger~These-Writers-Won-the-First-Copyblogger-Essay-Contest/">These 5 Writers Won the First Copyblogger Essay Contest &#8230;</a> appeared first on <a href="http://www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/">Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it&#x2019;s too Late</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-intensive-super-early-bird/">A Content Marketing Experience Designed to Take Your Business to the Next Level</a></li></ul> <div class="jpack-share-top"><div class="share-before share-filled share-small" id="share-before-37202"><div class="twitter" id="twitter-before-37202" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/essay-contest-winners/" data-text="These 5 Writers Won the First Copyblogger Essay Contest &#8230;" data-title="Tweet"></div><div class="googlePlus" id="googleplus-before-37202" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/essay-contest-winners/" data-text="These 5 Writers Won the First Copyblogger Essay Contest &#8230;" data-title="+1"></div><div class="facebook" id="facebook-before-37202" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/essay-contest-winners/" data-text="These 5 Writers Won the First Copyblogger Essay Contest &#8230;" data-title="Like"></div><div class="linkedin" id="linkedin-before-37202" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/essay-contest-winners/" data-text="These 5 Writers Won the First Copyblogger Essay Contest &#8230;" data-title="Share"></div><div class="pinterest" id="pinterest-before-37202" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/essay-contest-winners/" data-text="These 5 Writers Won the First Copyblogger Essay Contest &#8230;" data-title="Pin"></div></div> </div><p><img title="The Copyblogger Essay Contest Winners" alt="Image of The Copyblogger Essay Contest Winners Poster" src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/essay-contest/CB-Winners.jpg" width="650" /></p> <p>250 words is <em>not</em> a lot of words.</p> <p>It barely fits on a single sheet of paper.</p> <p>So when you answer the question “<a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/cdn-origin/images/essay-contest/copyblogger-essay-contest-poster.jpg" target="_blank">Why is online authority essential?</a>” you must be lean <em>and</em> creative.</p> <p><span id="more-37202"></span>Who among you did it best?</p> <h3>Picking the winners</h3> <p>Jerod and I worked our way through all 272 entries. If every submission was 250 words, that’s 68,000 words in fewer than four days &#8230; the equivalent of reading Mark Twain’s <em>The Adventures of Tom Sawyer</em>.</p> <p>But that hard work paid off because we discovered some outstanding answers for why online authority is essential.</p> <p>The winning essays did it by answering the question with a crisp, meaningful story introduced by a compelling headline.</p> <p>You’ll get to read each of the winners here on Copyblogger. We’ll publish the grand prizewinning essay on Friday December 20th, followed by the four remaining essays each Friday after that.</p> <p>And speaking of winners, drumroll please &#8230;</p> <h3>Second Prize &#8230;</h3> <p><strong>Nick Evans</strong>, <strong>Joe Pawlikowski</strong>, and <strong>Mark Wayland</strong>!</p> <p>Each of these fine gentlemen will get a one-year membership to Authority and have their essays published on Copyblogger.</p> <h3>First Prize &#8230;</h3> <p><strong>Abbey Dieteman</strong>!</p> <p>Abbey wins a lifetime membership to <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.copyblogger.com/join-authority/" target="_blank">Authority</a> and will have her essay published on Copyblogger.</p> <h3>And the Grand Prize goes to &#8230;</h3> <p><strong><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://plus.google.com/u/0/+AnthonySills/posts" target="_blank">Anthony Sills</a></strong>!</p> <p>Anthony wins a ticket to our <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.copyblogger.com/authority-intensive/" target="_blank">Authority Intensive conference</a>, a lifetime membership to Authority, and will have his essay published on Copyblogger. Congratulations Anthony!</p> <p><em>*Thank you to everyone who entered, for your time, your talent, and your hard-fought answers. This contest was a success because of you. When you get a chance, congratulate the winners in the comments below. And start sharpening your writing chops for next time!</em></p> <div class="author-box"><div><img alt='' src='http://0.gravatar.com/avatar/81c83444aed195de41d9e227bf13c2dc?s=100&amp;d=http%3A%2F%2F0.gravatar.com%2Favatar%2Fad516503a11cd5ca435acc9bb6523536%3Fs%3D100&amp;r=G' class='avatar avatar-100 photo' height='100' width='100' /> <span class="subheading">About the author</span><h3>Demian Farnworth</h3> <br><p>Demian Farnworth is Copyblogger Media's Chief Copywriter. Follow him on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://twitter.com/demianfarnworth" target="_blank">Twitter</a> or <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://plus.google.com/115630079405940076652/posts" target="_blank">Google+</a>.</p> </div></div><p></p> <p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/essay-contest-winners/">These 5 Writers Won the First Copyblogger Essay Contest &#8230;</a> appeared first on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p><Img align="left" border="0" height="1" width="1" style="border:0;float:left;margin:0;padding:0" hspace="0" src="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/i/52033745/0/copyblogger"> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/">Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it&#x2019;s too Late</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-intensive-super-early-bird/">A Content Marketing Experience Designed to Take Your Business to the Next Level</a></li></ul> 3 Ways the Magic of Dr. Seuss Can Help You Create Unforgettable Copy http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51968716/0/copyblogger~Ways-the-Magic-of-Dr-Seuss-Can-Help-You-Create-Unforgettable-Copy/ Copyblogger urn:uuid:a60698ac-e590-c32b-121e-445ca4ce2de2 Wed, 11 Dec 2013 13:00:00 +0000 <p>Great copywriters hook readers in word by word, line by line. Like renowned fiction writers, even children&#8217;s book writers, great copywriters know how to make content so addictive, it’s nearly impossible to put down. They know how to write the kind of copy that can stay with their audience for years. Let&#8217;s add a little<p><a class="more-link" href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51968716/0/copyblogger~Ways-the-Magic-of-Dr-Seuss-Can-Help-You-Create-Unforgettable-Copy/" rel="nofollow">[ Continue Reading... ]</a></p><p></p> </p><p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51968716/0/copyblogger~Ways-the-Magic-of-Dr-Seuss-Can-Help-You-Create-Unforgettable-Copy/">3 Ways the Magic of Dr. Seuss Can Help You Create Unforgettable Copy</a> appeared first on <a href="http://www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/">Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it&#x2019;s too Late</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/2013-essay-deadline/">Here&#x2019;s Your Last Chance to Enter Copyblogger&#x2019;s Essay Contest (and Compete for Insanely Useful Prizes)</a></li></ul> <div class="jpack-share-top"><div class="share-before share-filled share-small" id="share-before-37636"><div class="twitter" id="twitter-before-37636" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/unforgettable-copywriting/" data-text="3 Ways the Magic of Dr. Seuss Can Help You Create Unforgettable Copy" data-title="Tweet"></div><div class="googlePlus" id="googleplus-before-37636" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/unforgettable-copywriting/" data-text="3 Ways the Magic of Dr. Seuss Can Help You Create Unforgettable Copy" data-title="+1"></div><div class="facebook" id="facebook-before-37636" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/unforgettable-copywriting/" data-text="3 Ways the Magic of Dr. Seuss Can Help You Create Unforgettable Copy" data-title="Like"></div><div class="linkedin" id="linkedin-before-37636" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/unforgettable-copywriting/" data-text="3 Ways the Magic of Dr. Seuss Can Help You Create Unforgettable Copy" data-title="Share"></div><div class="pinterest" id="pinterest-before-37636" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/unforgettable-copywriting/" data-text="3 Ways the Magic of Dr. Seuss Can Help You Create Unforgettable Copy" data-title="Pin"></div></div> </div><p><img alt="Theodor Seuss Geisel sitting at his desk" src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/650/dr-seuss.jpg" width="650" /></p> <p><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/copywriting-101/" target="_blank">Great copywriters</a> hook readers in word by word, line by line.</p> <p>Like renowned fiction writers, even <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/read-childrens-books/" target="_blank">children&#8217;s book writers</a>, great copywriters know how to <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/engaging-content/" target="_blank">make content so addictive</a>, it’s nearly impossible to put down. </p> <p>They know how to write the kind of copy that can stay with their audience for years.</p> <p>Let&#8217;s add a little bit of this kind of power into your own writing, right now &#8230;</p> <p><span id="more-37636"></span>Follow these three scientific (and magical) techniques used by the king of addictive prose: Dr. Seuss.</p> <h3>But first, you <em>must</em> know Broca &#8230;</h3> <p>It all starts with getting your reader’s attention. </p> <p>And if you want to use copywriting to do this, you really need to know about <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Broca" target="_blank">Paul Broca</a>, who was so smart that they named a whole area of your brain after him.</p> <p><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broca%27s_area" target="_blank">Broca’s area</a> is the region in the frontal lobe that deals with language comprehension, but what’s really interesting is the way that it works when people read content. </p> <p>Basically, as we become more familiar with language, our Broca area skips over what feels predictable. So if we see the same words, phrases, and clichés, they simply don’t have the same impact as when we read them the first time around. </p> <p>In his book <em>The Magical Worlds of the Wizard of Ads</em>, <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.rhw.com/youll-laugh-youll-cry/" target="_blank">Roy H. Williams</a> states that for adverts to cut through the noise they need to be different enough to wake up the Broca area &#8230; but not so different that the audience discards the idea outright. </p> <p>In other words, your audience has to feel your content is <em>new</em>, but also <em>credible</em>. </p> <p>One way to achieve this is to follow <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/copywriting-101/" target="_blank">the tried and tested rules of copywriting</a>, while shaking things up a little bit on the language side. </p> <p>Enter: Dr. Seuss and his three unforgettable techniques.</p> <h3>1. Pudding <em>before</em> sprouts</h3> <p>Winning the voluntary attention of young children is not an easy task. Oh, and you’re trying to teach them something at the same time? Good luck with that. </p> <p>Lots of Dr. Seuss stories had morals in them. But he understood that for his readers to take them on board, he couldn’t simply outline the meaning at the beginning of the story. </p> <p>As he explained: “Kids can see a moral coming a mile off and they gag at it.” </p> <p>Not unlike sprouts.</p> <p>So how did he get kids to eat their greens? </p> <p>By appealing to them through creativity <em>first</em> and then moving slowly to logic throughout the story. Seuss&#8217; books would begin in a vivid, whimsical, and fantastical manner to grab attention <em>before</em> attempting the delivery of morals. </p> <p>Pudding first &#8230; then sprouts. </p> <p>One way to improve his chances of capturing attention was to start with active language using more verbs than adjectives. </p> <p>Instead of starting the story with the facts, he encouraged the reader to visualize a dynamic experience. </p> <p>The same applies to your copywriting. </p> <p>You can’t just tell a reader what it is they need, or what it is you have, until you’ve introduced a vivid picture &#8230; such as outlining your customer’s pain and then agitating it. </p> <p>In his recent post on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/damn-good-sentences/" target="_blank">writing a damn good sentence</a>, watch how Demian Farnworth uses verbs and illustrative examples to introduce the Authority membership: </p> <blockquote><ul> <li>You write something clever, but everyone ignores it.</li> <li>You hear about a new opportunity, but don’t pursue it because you don’t have the skills or confidence to attempt it.</li> <li>You get overlooked by everybody &#8212; including your boss &#8212; because the guy in the next cubicle seems to know everything about SEO, email marketing, or copywriting.</li> <li>You hear about all the new clients your peers are picking up &#8230; but none are showing up at your door.</li> </ul> </blockquote> <p>Demian doesn’t start by saying that the reader should get an Authority membership so they can get “instant access to over 40 hours of high-impact education &#8212; plus many additional hours of advanced training every month.” That comes a little later. </p> <p>The facts are still important. It’s just they we’re serving up the tasty stuff first. </p> <p>So say it with me: <strong>pudding <em>before</em> sprouts</strong>.</p> <p>Very good. Now that you’ve gotten your audience&#8217;s attention, let’s look at two more ways you can make your words unforgettable. </p> <h3>2. Birds of a feather flock conjointly &#8230; wait, what?!</h3> <p>Not the most catchy of subheads right? </p> <p>Birds of a feather flock <em>together</em>. Now isn’t that a lot easier on the tongue? </p> <p>One of the most addictive (and signature) elements of Seuss’ writing is the hypnotic rhythm and rhyme. The main lines of his first ever book are: </p> <blockquote><p>And that is a story that no one can beat, and to think that I saw it on Mulberry Street.</p></blockquote> <p>As Williams recounts in <em>The Magical Worlds of the Wizard of Ads</em>, Seuss came upon these lines almost by accident, while below deck on a luxury liner in a storm. Battling sea sickness Seuss kept himself distracted by writing poetry in a rhythm that mimicked the ship’s engines. This whimsical, lazy river style was perfect for building momentum and making it easier for the reader to flow through the content.</p> <p>That is not to say that you have to write your copy in verse, but don’t overlook this technique. Rhyming and rhythmic language do not just make content easier to read, they actually make it more persuasive. </p> <p>In 2000, the American Psychological Society published a <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://webspace.utexas.edu/mm4994/www/rhyme%20as%20reason.pdf" target="_blank">study by Matthew McGlone and Jessica Tofighbakhsh</a>. Matthew and Jessica sought to determine whether people felt sayings were more truthful and accurate when they rhymed, as opposed to not rhyming. </p> <p>Participants were given phrases such as “caution and measure will win you treasure” and “sobriety conceals what alcohol reveals” as well as other ones that did not rhyme such as “caution and measure will win you riches” and “sobriety conceals what alcohol unmasks.” </p> <p>Despite participants saying that rhyming was not indicative of accuracy, just about every case voted for the rhyming aphorism when asked which was a more accurate representation of the world. </p> <p>Not only can rhyming copy make your words more memorable (think about how many songs or playground chants you can recite from years ago), but it is more likely to influence your reader into believing the content. </p> <p>So don’t rule out using a catchy rhyming phrase to sell the benefits of your product or service. It might just be in the minds of your readers for years to come. </p> <h3>3. Don’t be afraid of nizzards and glikkers</h3> <p>Another technique Dr. Seuss would use to wake the sleeping Broca area was to create his own words. Cleverly, Seuss&#8217; words were different enough to stand out, but not so different that they were hard to understand. </p> <ul> <li>A sneetch is a bird-like creature who lives on beach</li> <li>A Floob-boober-bab-boober-bub is a creature recognized by its bulbous body as it floats through water</li> <li>A Zizzer-zazzer-zuzz is the anthropomorphic representation of the letter Z</li> </ul> <p>But hold up there before you start getting <em>this</em> creative with your copywriting. </p> <p>Copying this style directly is tricky when selling a product or service that is not for children, but proprietary language and words can still be very powerful. Rather than making up completely new words, try and find alternate names to describe what you have to offer. </p> <p>For years direct marketing copywriters have developed (and trademarked) inside language and terms to make them stand out. You have likely seen this used in copywriting for products and services. </p> <p>For example, many online marketing courses are not described as “courses” but as &#8220;systems,&#8221; &#8220;blueprints,&#8221; &#8220;methods,&#8221; and so on. In a world swimming with &#8220;courses,&#8221; these alternate terms are used to help them stand out. </p> <p>But beware: if other people in your industry have started to use similar terms, the more predictable they will be to your customer’s Broca region, which means audiences may ignore them. </p> <p>The really smart marketers have their own unique course names. These names don’t simply give you the facts of what the course is. Like Seuss&#8217; words, these unique course names also build a vivid image of what the course can do for you: </p> <ul> <li><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.copyblogger.com/join-authority/" target="_blank">Authority</a></li> <li><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.bookyourselfsolid.com/" target="_blank">Book Yourself Solid</a></li> <li><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~teachingsells.com/" target="_blank">Teaching Sells</a></li> </ul> <p>And okay, so you may never invent a new word that is then included in the dictionary (apparently <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nerd#Etymology" target="_blank">we can thank Dr. Seuss</a> for the word <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/headline-nerds/" target="_blank">“nerd”</a>), but giving your services unique titles makes it much easier for people to recognize you and know what you offer. </p> <h3>Create unforgettable copy</h3> <p>So, can you be like Dr. Seuss and find altogether unique ways to describe your products or services? </p> <p>Can you create a new name that vividly describe the benefits of what you have to offer? </p> <p>Give it your Seussiest shot and let me know your names in the comments below! </p> <p><small><em>Image credit: New York World-Telegram and the Sun staff photographer [Public domain], <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File%3ATed_Geisel_NYWTS_2.jpg" target="_blank">via Wikimedia Commons</a></em></small></p> <p class="alert"><em><strong>About the Author:</strong> In addition to writing, Amy Harrison likes to rip copywriting techniques apart to see how they work. She then shares her findings through tips, templates, and free resources on her site <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~harrisonamy.com/cb/" target="_blank">Harrisonamy Copywriting</a>.</em></p><p></p> <p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/unforgettable-copywriting/">3 Ways the Magic of Dr. Seuss Can Help You Create Unforgettable Copy</a> appeared first on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p><Img align="left" border="0" height="1" width="1" style="border:0;float:left;margin:0;padding:0" hspace="0" src="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/i/51968716/0/copyblogger"> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/">Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it&#x2019;s too Late</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/2013-essay-deadline/">Here&#x2019;s Your Last Chance to Enter Copyblogger&#x2019;s Essay Contest (and Compete for Insanely Useful Prizes)</a></li></ul> Here’s How Elizabeth Gilbert (Bestselling Author of Eat, Pray, Love) Writes http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51915769/0/copyblogger~Heres-How-Elizabeth-Gilbert-Bestselling-Author-of-Eat-Pray-Love-Writes/ Copyblogger urn:uuid:f72324a2-11c6-66bd-db08-bee8af8d4120 Tue, 10 Dec 2013 13:00:00 +0000 <p>Very few writers, regardless of their specialty, can claim the honors of a National Book Award nomination, a hat-trick of National Magazine Award nods, and a #1 New York Times Bestseller, all to their credit. Elizabeth Gilbert can. Throw in her radiant new novel, The Signature of All Things, that TIME recently named one of<p><a class="more-link" href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51915769/0/copyblogger~Heres-How-Elizabeth-Gilbert-Bestselling-Author-of-Eat-Pray-Love-Writes/" rel="nofollow">[ Continue Reading... ]</a></p><p></p> </p><p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51915769/0/copyblogger~Heres-How-Elizabeth-Gilbert-Bestselling-Author-of-Eat-Pray-Love-Writes/">Here&#8217;s How Elizabeth Gilbert (Bestselling Author of Eat, Pray, Love) Writes</a> appeared first on <a href="http://www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/">Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it&#x2019;s too Late</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/self-publishing-conversion/">100% of Independent Publishers Who Do This Will Sell More of Their Work</a></li></ul> <div class="jpack-share-top"><div class="share-before share-filled share-small" id="share-before-37962"><div class="twitter" id="twitter-before-37962" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/how-elizabeth-gilbert-writes/" data-text="Here&#8217;s How Elizabeth Gilbert (Bestselling Author of Eat, Pray, Love) Writes" data-title="Tweet"></div><div class="googlePlus" id="googleplus-before-37962" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/how-elizabeth-gilbert-writes/" data-text="Here&#8217;s How Elizabeth Gilbert (Bestselling Author of Eat, Pray, Love) Writes" data-title="+1"></div><div class="facebook" id="facebook-before-37962" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/how-elizabeth-gilbert-writes/" data-text="Here&#8217;s How Elizabeth Gilbert (Bestselling Author of Eat, Pray, Love) Writes" data-title="Like"></div><div class="linkedin" id="linkedin-before-37962" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/how-elizabeth-gilbert-writes/" data-text="Here&#8217;s How Elizabeth Gilbert (Bestselling Author of Eat, Pray, Love) Writes" data-title="Share"></div><div class="pinterest" id="pinterest-before-37962" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/how-elizabeth-gilbert-writes/" data-text="Here&#8217;s How Elizabeth Gilbert (Bestselling Author of Eat, Pray, Love) Writes" data-title="Pin"></div></div> </div><p><img alt="Image of The Writer Files Logo" title="Here's How Elizabeth Gilbert (Bestselling Author of Eat, Pray, Love) Writes" src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/650/cb-writer-files.jpg" width="650" /></p> <p>Very few <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/future-belongs-to-writers/" target="_blank">writers</a>, regardless of their specialty, can claim the honors of a National Book Award nomination, a hat-trick of National Magazine Award nods, and a #1 New York Times Bestseller, all to their credit.</p> <p><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.elizabethgilbert.com/" target="_blank">Elizabeth Gilbert</a> can.</p> <p>Throw in her radiant new novel, <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.elizabethgilbert.com/books/the-signature-of-all-things/" target="_blank"><em>The Signature of All Things</em></a>, that TIME recently named one of the &#8220;<a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~entertainment.time.com/2013/12/04/arts-and-entertainment/slide/top-10-best-fiction-books/" target="_blank">10 best books of 2013</a>,&#8221; and you have a true marvel.</p> <p>From her early days in the cutthroat journalism trade, writing copy for the likes of GQ and the New York Times Magazine, to her wildly successful memoir <em>Eat, Pray, Love</em>, Ms. Gilbert has punched her way to becoming a heavyweight wordsmith.</p> <p><span id="more-37962"></span>And if her intimidating record in the ring isn&#8217;t enough, set aside 19 minutes of your life to absorb the TED talk she did on finding your &#8220;<a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.ted.com/talks/elizabeth_gilbert_on_genius.html?quote=430" target="_blank">creative genius</a>.&#8221;</p> <p>Let&#8217;s face it, few bestselling authors can also say they&#8217;ve been portrayed in a Hollywood film by an Academy Award winner (it was <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.imdb.com/title/tt0879870/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1" target="_blank">Julia Roberts</a> if you were sleeping that year).</p> <p>Thankfully, Ms. Gilbert took a breather from her latest book tour to stop by The Writer Files and share her secret to &#8220;getting it done,&#8221; explain why <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/ze-frank-creative-content/" target="_blank">perfect is the enemy of good</a>, and drop her unique definition of creativity on us.</p> <p>It&#8217;s inspiring, to say the least.</p> <p>Join me as we examine the file of Elizabeth Gilbert, writer &#8230;</p> <h3>About the writer &#8230;</h3> <p><strong>Who are you and what do you do?</strong>
</p> <p>I&#8217;m a writer and I write. <br>   <br> <strong>What is your area of expertise as a writer or online publisher?</strong></p> <p>Not really sure how to answer that one. After &#8220;Eat, Pray, Love&#8221; I became best known as a memoirist, but I also write fiction and biography and short stories, and for years I worked as a journalist. I guess my area of expertise is getting it done, whatever needs writing. I used to have a business card that said, &#8220;Words-R-Us.&#8221; <br>   <br> <strong>Where can we find your writing?</strong>
</p> <p>In bookstores. And on bed stands, beach chairs, and train seats all over the world, I dearly hope.</p> <h3>The writer&#8217;s productivity &#8230;</h3> <p><strong>How much time, per day, do you spend reading or doing research?</strong></p> <p>It depends. I don&#8217;t write by the day; I write by the season. Months and years can pass between bouts of writing —- time that is spent researching, or promoting an earlier book. But when it comes time to write, I keep farmer&#8217;s hours. Up before dawn, and I work until about 11:00 or noon every day.</p> <p>By the end of a project, when I have barn fever, it may become six or even eight hours a day &#8230; but that&#8217;s only at the end, when I feel like I&#8217;m riding a bicycle fast down a hill, with no hands. Such episodes are real. <br>   <br> <strong>Before you begin to write, do you have any pre-game rituals or practices?</strong></p> <p>Spend several years in research and preparation. Then, when it comes time to work, clean everything in the house. (Alternatively, move to a new house that is already clean.) Inform everyone that they may not be hearing from me for a while. (Apologize in advance for that.)</p> <p>Clear off my schedule until I have a nice long block of empty time. Bow down. Ask for grace. Commit to the idea of collaborating with the book, not going to war against it. Cross fingers. Make a cup of tea. Begin. <br>   <br> <strong>Do you prefer any particular music (or silence) while you write?</strong></p> <p>Complete and total silence. <br>   <br> <strong>How many hours a day do you spend writing (excluding email, social media, etc.)?</strong>
</p> <p>Everything that needs to be done in my life has to be done before 11:00 am, or it won&#8217;t be done well, or may not even be done at all. I love the early hours because the world hasn&#8217;t tracked me down yet. My best mind is my mind at dawn, after a good night of sleep. </p> <p>I usually wake up with the solution on the tip of my brain to the creative problem of yesterday, and then I go running to my desk to try to catch my intelligence before it drains out of my ears. By 2pm, I am useless for anything except simple manual labor. <br>   <br> <strong>Do you write every day or adhere to any particular system?</strong></p> <p>At the beginning of a book, I establish a rule that I must not stand up for two hours. Two hours every morning, committed to just sitting there, whether the words are coming or not. Two hours is a long time, by the way, when you aren&#8217;t yet in the swing of it. </p> <p>Toward the end of project, I discipline myself in the opposite direction: I make myself stop, call it a day. There comes a point of diminishing returns, after too many hours of writing, when it&#8217;s no longer helping you to keep writing. You get squishy-headed and full of bad ideas. You&#8217;ll have to delete it all the next day. Better to walk away, go to sleep, come back fresh. <br>   <br> <strong>Do you believe in writer&#8217;s block? If so, how do you avoid it?</strong>
</p> <p>I believe that it happens (and I have experienced it) but I don&#8217;t believe that it is a stand-alone psychological disorder. I believe that Writer&#8217;s Block is a symptom, usually, of some other actual psychological disorder (depression, anxiety, narcissism, alcoholism, extreme competitiveness, fear, etc).</p> <p>I combat it through gentleness toward the self. Anything you fight, after all, fights you back. So I don&#8217;t fight Writer&#8217;s Block. I just try to coerce, persuade, encourage, bribe, and trick myself into returning to work. </p> <p>And I diminish the stakes by reminding myself that none of this is actually that big a deal. Writers are some of the most dramatic people who ever lived, but in fact, what is at stake in the work of writing is kind of &#8230; nothing. </p> <p>Nobody&#8217;s child ever died because someone got a bad review in The New York Times. It&#8217;s just art. And as beautiful as art is, and as much as we love it, there is no such thing as an actual real-life Arts Emergency. </p> <blockquote><p>Tom Waits told me once that all he does, as a songwriter, is make &#8216;jewelry for the inside of people&#8217;s minds.&#8217; I find that incredibly calming as an idea.</p></blockquote> <p>So that&#8217;s all we do, those of us in creative fields: mental jewelry-making. You aren&#8217;t a heart surgeon. You aren&#8217;t in charge of the lives of twenty men on an oil rig.  You aren&#8217;t performing roadside amputations in a war zone. You aren&#8217;t even driving a school bus. You&#8217;re just making art. </p> <p>Nothing real is at stake here. So just go make a pretty thing. Or make a clunky thing, or a tiny thing, or a big thing, or an ugly thing, or an experimental and wild thing. Doesn&#8217;t matter. Enjoy the making. Let it go. It&#8217;s merely art. This line of thinking brings me great peace. Gets me out of my own way.</p> <h3>The writer&#8217;s creativity &#8230;</h3> <p><strong>Define creativity.</strong></p> <p>The strange partnership between a human being&#8217;s labor and the mystery of inspiration.</p> <p><strong>Who are your favorite authors, online or off?</strong></p> <p>Dickens, James, Eliot, Trollope, Amis, Munro, Saunders, Whitman, <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.npr.org/2012/11/26/165913371/mantel-takes-up-betrayal-beheadings-in-bodies" target="_blank">Mantel</a>.</p> <p><strong>Can you share a best-loved quote?</strong>
</p> <p>By the poet Jack Gilbert (no relation):</p> <blockquote><p>We must risk delight. We can do without pleasure, 
but not delight. Not enjoyment. We must have 
the stubbornness to accept our gladness in the ruthless 
furnace of this world.</p></blockquote> <p>  <br> <strong>How would you like to grow creatively as a writer?</strong></p> <p>Bigger, faster, stronger. <br>   <br> <strong>Who or what is your Muse at the moment (i.e. specific creative inspirations)?</strong>
</p> <p>Women. Specifically, their amazing powers of resilience. <br>   <br> <strong>What makes a writer great?</strong></p> <p>Big brain, bigger heart.</p> <h3>The writer&#8217;s workflow &#8230;</h3> <p><strong>What hardware or typewriter model do you presently use?</strong></p> <p>
I work on a MacBook Pro. <br>   <br> <strong>What software do you use most for writing and general workflow?</strong>
</p> <p>I use index cards (handwritten) for keeping my notes and research in order, and crummy old Microsoft Word for actual composition.</p> <p><strong>Do you have any tricks for beating procrastination? Do you adhere to deadlines?</strong>
</p> <p>I abide by Goethe&#8217;s rule: &#8220;Never hurry, never rest.&#8221; I never go into crazy fugue states, but I don&#8217;t ever stop, either. I&#8217;m a plow mule.  I&#8217;m very disciplined, and I have a great regard for deadlines &#8212; usually my own.  </p> <p>I was lucky enough to have had discipline instilled in me by my very organized and Calvinist mother, who taught us to work first and play later (and maybe not even play so much, actually). </p> <p>She also taught us not to become perfectionists, which is where a lot of procrastination and time-wasting occurs. <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perfect_is_the_enemy_of_good" target="_blank">Nothing is less efficient than perfectionism</a>. Her great adage, which I still adhere to, was:</p> <blockquote><p>Done is better than good.</p></blockquote> <p>I can tell you all kinds of specific things that are wrong with each of my books, but I&#8217;m not going to try fixing them, because then you fall down the wormhole, and the books are good enough already, and I want to move on to other things. </p> <p>90% is truly good enough. There is not enough time in life to quest for perfection. Better to move forward. All this I learned from my mom. I was a lazy kid by nature, but my mother refused to allow me to become a lazy adult. </p> <p>I was REALLY difficult to train out of my laziness, by the way. (My nickname in middle school sports was &#8220;Little Miss Half-Ass.&#8221;) It would&#8217;ve been so much easier for my mother to quit nagging me and just let me grow into a sloppy layabout, but she simply wasn&#8217;t having it. </p> <p>It was as if she&#8217;d been handed a little coach potato at birth, but then took it upon herself to form me into a Navy SEAL. As a result of all that training, I am not afraid of work. I have even come to love work. </p> <p>I think that loving one&#8217;s work is a marvelous trick for enjoying life. When people ask me if writing is hard or easy for me, I don&#8217;t even know how to answer that. Hard and easy don&#8217;t matter. </p> <blockquote><p>I don&#8217;t need writing to be easy; I just need it to be interesting.</p></blockquote> <p>  <br> <strong>How do you stay organized (methods, systems, or &#8220;mad science&#8221;)?</strong>
</p> <p>Index cards, index cards, index cards. </p> <p>By the time I was ready to write <em>The Signature of All Things</em> I had five shoe boxes of index cards &#8212; ordered by subject, character, chapter and theme &#8212; at the ready. After that much preparation, it kind of becomes a paint-by-numbers operation. <br>   <br> <strong>How do you relax at the end of a hard day?</strong></p> <p>I sit in the kitchen and watch my husband cook dinner, and we talk about dumb little things.</p> <h3>A few questions just for the fun of it &#8230;</h3> <p><strong>Who (or what) has been your greatest teacher?</strong></p> <p>My mother, first of all. My own legions of terrible mistakes, secondly. <br>   <br> <strong>What do you see as your greatest success in life?</strong></p> <p>Learning more and more, every year, how to stay out of my own way and other people&#8217;s ways. In other words, learning more and more how not to be a professional pain in the ass. <br>   <br> <strong>What&#8217;s your biggest aggravation at the moment (writing related or otherwise)?</strong>
</p> <p>Those moments of tough emotional conflict or tension with other people, when I simply cannot figure out how to put compassion into play. <br>   <br> <strong>Choose one author, living or dead, that you would like to have dinner with.</strong> <br>   <br> <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/the-benjamin-franklin-guide-to-marketing-your-business-online/" target="_blank">Ben Franklin</a>. He would be a blast. And he would be so into modernity. He&#8217;d have a million questions. (Also, he was a terrific author.)</p> <p><strong>If you could take a vacation tomorrow to anywhere in the world, where would you go (cost or responsibilities are no object)?</strong></p> <p>Greece.</p> <p><strong>Can you offer any advice to fellow writers that you might offer yourself, if you could go back in time and &#8220;do it all over?&#8221;</strong>
</p> <p>If I had it to do over again, I would&#8217;ve stayed away from romantic entanglements and focused more on my work. And mastered a second language when I was young enough that it would still have been easy. (Or, rather, easier.) <br>   <br> <strong>Is there anything else you&#8217;d like our readers to know?</strong>
</p> <blockquote><p>Tell them to be nice to each other. None of the rest of it really matters.</p></blockquote> <p><strong>Please tell our readers where they can connect with you online.</strong>
</p> <ul> <li><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.elizabethgilbert.com/" target="_blank">www.elizabethgilbert.com</a></li> <li>Facebook: <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://www.facebook.com/GilbertLiz?fref=ts" target="_blank">GilbertLiz</a></li> <li>Twitter: <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://twitter.com/GilbertLiz" target="_blank">@GilbertLiz</a>
</li> </ul> <p>♡LG</p> <h3>And finally, the writer&#8217;s desk &#8230;</h3> <p>Every serious writer builds a shrine of some sort, whether it be picking the perfect table at a coffee shop, or carving out a quiet nook in your home, with which you hope to <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/steven-pressfield-interview/" target="_blank">entertain the Muse</a>.</p> <p>Rumor has it, Ms. Gilbert had a specially designed library built in her attic that she calls her &#8220;Sky-brary,&#8221; where she wrote the entirety of <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.elizabethgilbert.com/books/the-signature-of-all-things/" target="_blank"><em>The Signature of All Things</em></a>.</p> <p>Right there in the center, anchoring the space quite adequately for her prose, sits a 15-foot plank of polished Acacia wood.</p> <p>Thank you for sharing a snapshot of your amazing writer&#8217;s lair, Liz!</p> <div id="attachment_38046" class="wp-caption aligncenter" style="width: 660px"><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/images/2013/12/Liz-Gilbert-Sky-brary.jpg"><img src="http://www.copyblogger.com/images/2013/12/Liz-Gilbert-Sky-brary.jpg" alt="Elizabeth&#039;s Gilbert&#039;s &quot;Skybrary&quot;" width="650" height="488" class="size-full wp-image-38046" /></a><p class="wp-caption-text">Elizabeth&#8217;s Gilbert&#8217;s &#8220;Sky-brary&#8221;</p></div> <h3>And thank <em>you</em> for sharing The Writer Files &#8230;</h3> <p>More Q&#038;As are on the calendar from writers who inspire us, and if you care to flip through the archives, <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/category/the-writer-files/" target="_blank">you can find more accumulated wisdom here</a>.</p> <p>If you&#8217;ve already subscribed to Copyblogger via email or RSS, the next installment will be delivered to you just like the rest of our daily content.</p> <p>If not, <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/subscribe/" target="_blank">go ahead and subscribe right now</a> so you don&#8217;t miss a thing.</p> <p>Now stop being so dramatic and get back to work! See you out there.</p> <p><strong>Bonus Question:</strong> Where (or what) is your writer&#8217;s shrine? Drop them into the comments and we&#8217;ll compare.</p> <div class="author-box"><div><img alt='' src='http://1.gravatar.com/avatar/1230f34a88b2019236a7ceddffb51d7d?s=100&amp;d=http%3A%2F%2F1.gravatar.com%2Favatar%2Fad516503a11cd5ca435acc9bb6523536%3Fs%3D100&amp;r=G' class='avatar avatar-100 photo' height='100' width='100' /> <span class="subheading">About the author</span><h3>Kelton Reid</h3> <br><p><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~keltonreid.com">Kelton Reid</a> is Director of Multimedia Production for Copyblogger Media, and an independent screenwriter and novelist. Get more from Kelton on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://twitter.com/#!/KeltonReid">Twitter</a> and <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://plus.google.com/114110291514185180705/posts" rel="author">Google+</a>.</p> </div></div><p></p> <p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/how-elizabeth-gilbert-writes/">Here&#8217;s How Elizabeth Gilbert (Bestselling Author of Eat, Pray, Love) Writes</a> appeared first on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p><Img align="left" border="0" height="1" width="1" style="border:0;float:left;margin:0;padding:0" hspace="0" src="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/i/51915769/0/copyblogger"> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/">Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it&#x2019;s too Late</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/self-publishing-conversion/">100% of Independent Publishers Who Do This Will Sell More of Their Work</a></li></ul> Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it’s too Late http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51856597/0/copyblogger~Premise-for-WordPress-is-Going-Away-Grab-a-Copy-and-Save-Before-it%e2%80%99s-too-Late/ Copyblogger urn:uuid:34b90b67-f2f6-a4d7-58da-d75974675cfb Mon, 09 Dec 2013 13:00:00 +0000 <p>Yes, it’s true. Our Premise landing page and membership site solution for WordPress is gone at the end of this week. And that means exactly what it sounds like &#8230; we&#8217;re discontinuing sales of the product. Yes, this is the same software that we use at StudioPress to perform hundreds of thousands of dollars worth<p><a class="more-link" href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51856597/0/copyblogger~Premise-for-WordPress-is-Going-Away-Grab-a-Copy-and-Save-Before-it%e2%80%99s-too-Late/" rel="nofollow">[ Continue Reading... ]</a></p><p></p> </p><p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51856597/0/copyblogger~Premise-for-WordPress-is-Going-Away-Grab-a-Copy-and-Save-Before-it%e2%80%99s-too-Late/">Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it’s too Late</a> appeared first on <a href="http://www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/2013-essay-reminder/">Only One Week Left to Enter Copyblogger&#8217;s Essay Contest (and Compete for Insanely Useful Prizes)</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/brevity/">Are You Too Lazy to Write Less?</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li></ul> <div class="jpack-share-top"><div class="share-before share-filled share-small" id="share-before-37707"><div class="twitter" id="twitter-before-37707" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/" data-text="Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it’s too Late" data-title="Tweet"></div><div class="googlePlus" id="googleplus-before-37707" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/" data-text="Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it’s too Late" data-title="+1"></div><div class="facebook" id="facebook-before-37707" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/" data-text="Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it’s too Late" data-title="Like"></div><div class="linkedin" id="linkedin-before-37707" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/" data-text="Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it’s too Late" data-title="Share"></div><div class="pinterest" id="pinterest-before-37707" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/" data-text="Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it’s too Late" data-title="Pin"></div></div> </div><p><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~getpremise.com/" target="_blank"><img src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/650/premise-closing.jpg" width="650" /></a></p> <p>Yes, it’s true. Our <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~getpremise.com/" target="_blank">Premise landing page and membership site solution for WordPress</a> is gone at the end of this week. And that means exactly what it sounds like &#8230; we&#8217;re discontinuing sales of the product.</p> <p>Yes, this is the same software that we use at <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.studiopress.com/" target="_blank">StudioPress</a> to perform hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of digital transactions each month, and securely deliver the purchased products.</p> <p>Yes, this is the very technology that powers <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.copyblogger.com/" target="_blank">MyCopyblogger</a>, the free content library that has boosted our email subscriptions by 400% since its introduction in May. It’s also the same software that houses and manages our paid <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.copyblogger.com/join-authority/" target="_blank">Authority training program</a> of over 5,000 online publishers.</p> <p>And yes, this is the same product that more than 11,300 webmasters rely on for advanced lead generation, digital sales, and membership site functionality for their WordPress sites.</p> <p>So now you may be thinking &#8230;</p> <p><span id="more-37707"></span>Huh?</p> <h3>Premise has done its duty</h3> <p>In many ways, we built Premise for ourselves, as demonstrated by all the heavy lifting it does at StudioPress, MyCopyblogger, Authority and many of our other sites. But even building it for our own use had a larger purpose.</p> <p>You see, we incorporated Premise into our own platforms to test, refine, and improve it so we could do something much grander. And we also put it through the wringer with over 11,000 other discriminating online publishers and marketers to make sure we got it right.</p> <p>Mission accomplished. So now it’s time for Premise to go away, and the grander vision to come out to play.</p> <p>Just to be clear, <em>taking Premise off the market won’t affect those who own it</em>. What I mean by that is:</p> <ul> <li>We will continue to fully support all Premise owners.</li> <li>We will continue to keep the software compatible with all WordPress updates.</li> <li>We will continue to improve functionality and upgrade owners at no charge.</li> </ul> <p>What we won’t do is sell it as-is anymore, at least after this Friday, December 13th. That’s right &#8230; we’re killing Premise on Friday the 13th after slashing the price (pay no attention to the gentleman in the hockey mask).</p> <h3>Last chance to buy Premise (and save, too)</h3> <p>Like any good “going out of business” sale, <em>everything must go</em>. And in this case, we’re saving you $70 off the regular price of Premise to make sure the place is fully cleaned out.</p> <p>Head over to the site and check out everything Premise can do. We&#8217;ve already lowered the price from $165 to $95 at the site, so no coupon code or special link is necessary to lock in your savings.</p> <p>Just keep in mind that when <strong>5 pm Pacific time on Friday, December 13, 2013</strong> rolls around, it’s curtains for Premise. Our money back guarantee, however, will naturally be honored for a full 30 days after your purchase, so no worries there.</p> <p><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~getpremise.com/">Grab Premise today before it’s gone</a>.</p> <div class="author-box"><div><img alt='' src='http://1.gravatar.com/avatar/34534405aa368793a1a65168bf3b808f?s=100&amp;d=http%3A%2F%2F1.gravatar.com%2Favatar%2Fad516503a11cd5ca435acc9bb6523536%3Fs%3D100&amp;r=G' class='avatar avatar-100 photo' height='100' width='100' /> <span class="subheading">About the author</span><h3>Brian Clark</h3> <br><p>Brian Clark is founder of Copyblogger and CEO of Copyblogger Media. Get more from Brian on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://plus.google.com/+BrianClark" rel="author">Google+</a>.</p> </div></div><p></p> <p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/">Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it’s too Late</a> appeared first on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p><Img align="left" border="0" height="1" width="1" style="border:0;float:left;margin:0;padding:0" hspace="0" src="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/i/51856597/0/copyblogger"> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/2013-essay-reminder/">Only One Week Left to Enter Copyblogger&#8217;s Essay Contest (and Compete for Insanely Useful Prizes)</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/brevity/">Are You Too Lazy to Write Less?</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li></ul> Follow @copyblogger on Twitter! http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51805777/0/copyblogger~Follow-copyblogger-on-Twitter/ Copyblogger urn:uuid:2f46fb2c-9f78-a30c-1dd2-4e8c4c9ec7b8 Sun, 08 Dec 2013 16:00:00 +0000 <p>Since way back in 2006, I used @copyblogger as my personal Twitter handle. Recently, we thought it was a good idea to separate the man from the brand, so I’m now @brianclark. That means @copyblogger has a new life, and an important function of its own. So why would you want to follow this account<p><a class="more-link" href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51805777/0/copyblogger~Follow-copyblogger-on-Twitter/" rel="nofollow">[ Continue Reading... ]</a></p><p></p> </p><p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51805777/0/copyblogger~Follow-copyblogger-on-Twitter/">Follow @copyblogger on Twitter!</a> appeared first on <a href="http://www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/2013-essay-deadline/">Here&#x2019;s Your Last Chance to Enter Copyblogger&#x2019;s Essay Contest (and Compete for Insanely Useful Prizes)</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/email-contest-2013/">Are You a Copywriting Hotshot? Test Your Skills in an Email Marketing Duel</a></li></ul> <div class="jpack-share-top"><div class="share-before share-filled share-small" id="share-before-38017"><div class="twitter" id="twitter-before-38017" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/follower-copyblogger/" data-text="Follow @copyblogger on Twitter!" data-title="Tweet"></div><div class="googlePlus" id="googleplus-before-38017" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/follower-copyblogger/" data-text="Follow @copyblogger on Twitter!" data-title="+1"></div><div class="facebook" id="facebook-before-38017" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/follower-copyblogger/" data-text="Follow @copyblogger on Twitter!" data-title="Like"></div><div class="linkedin" id="linkedin-before-38017" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/follower-copyblogger/" data-text="Follow @copyblogger on Twitter!" data-title="Share"></div><div class="pinterest" id="pinterest-before-38017" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/follower-copyblogger/" data-text="Follow @copyblogger on Twitter!" data-title="Pin"></div></div> </div><p>Since way back in 2006, I used <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://twitter.com/copyblogger">@copyblogger</a> as my personal Twitter handle. Recently, we thought it was a good idea to separate the man from the brand, so I’m now <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://twitter.com/brianclark">@brianclark</a>.</p> <p>That means <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://twitter.com/copyblogger">@copyblogger</a> has a new life, and an important function of its own. So why would you want to follow this account on Twitter?</p> <p>Here’s what you’ll get:</p> <ul> <li>Fresh Copyblogger content</li> <li>Classic Copyblogger articles</li> <li>Curated online marketing advice</li> <li>Special Twitter-only deals on our products</li> <li>Exclusive content event announcements</li> </ul> <p>Sound good? <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://twitter.com/copyblogger">Click to get on board</a>!</p> <div class="author-box"><div><img alt='' src='http://1.gravatar.com/avatar/34534405aa368793a1a65168bf3b808f?s=100&amp;d=http%3A%2F%2F1.gravatar.com%2Favatar%2Fad516503a11cd5ca435acc9bb6523536%3Fs%3D100&amp;r=G' class='avatar avatar-100 photo' height='100' width='100' /> <span class="subheading">About the author</span><h3>Brian Clark</h3> <br><p>Brian Clark is founder of Copyblogger and CEO of Copyblogger Media. Get more from Brian on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://plus.google.com/+BrianClark" rel="author">Google+</a>.</p> </div></div><p></p> <p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/follower-copyblogger/">Follow @copyblogger on Twitter!</a> appeared first on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p><Img align="left" border="0" height="1" width="1" style="border:0;float:left;margin:0;padding:0" hspace="0" src="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/i/51805777/0/copyblogger"> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/2013-essay-deadline/">Here&#x2019;s Your Last Chance to Enter Copyblogger&#x2019;s Essay Contest (and Compete for Insanely Useful Prizes)</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/email-contest-2013/">Are You a Copywriting Hotshot? Test Your Skills in an Email Marketing Duel</a></li></ul> 7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51674345/0/copyblogger~Steps-to-Becoming-a-Better-Writer/ Copyblogger urn:uuid:4df2150e-dbbf-8bd7-86bf-7ec9a6afb087 Fri, 06 Dec 2013 13:00:00 +0000 <p>Remember Ted Williams? The homeless man with the golden voice? Smooth, deep, controlled. Who wouldn&#8217;t want to sit at that man&#8217;s feet and listen to him talk all day? And that&#8217;s sort of the same effect Sonia Simone and Robert Bruce will have on you when you join them on their next Authority Master Class<p><a class="more-link" href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51674345/0/copyblogger~Steps-to-Becoming-a-Better-Writer/" rel="nofollow">[ Continue Reading... ]</a></p><p></p> </p><p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51674345/0/copyblogger~Steps-to-Becoming-a-Better-Writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a> appeared first on <a href="http://www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/2013-essay-reminder/">Only One Week Left to Enter Copyblogger&#8217;s Essay Contest (and Compete for Insanely Useful Prizes)</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/2013-essay-deadline/">Here&#x2019;s Your Last Chance to Enter Copyblogger&#x2019;s Essay Contest (and Compete for Insanely Useful Prizes)</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/genesis-theme-showcase/">5 Dazzling Design Examples of What&#8217;s Possible with the Genesis Framework for WordPress</a></li></ul> <div class="jpack-share-top"><div class="share-before share-filled share-small" id="share-before-37878"><div class="twitter" id="twitter-before-37878" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/" data-text="7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer" data-title="Tweet"></div><div class="googlePlus" id="googleplus-before-37878" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/" data-text="7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer" data-title="+1"></div><div class="facebook" id="facebook-before-37878" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/" data-text="7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer" data-title="Like"></div><div class="linkedin" id="linkedin-before-37878" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/" data-text="7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer" data-title="Share"></div><div class="pinterest" id="pinterest-before-37878" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/" data-text="7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer" data-title="Pin"></div></div> </div><p><img src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/650/hemingway.jpg" width="650" /></p> <p>Remember Ted Williams? The homeless man with the golden voice? Smooth, deep, controlled.</p> <p>Who wouldn&#8217;t want to sit at that man&#8217;s feet and listen to him talk all day?</p> <p>And that&#8217;s sort of the same effect Sonia Simone and Robert Bruce will have on you when you <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.copyblogger.com/type/seminars/" target="_blank">join them on their next Authority Master Class</a> this Thursday, December 12th at high noon (Eastern U.S. time).</p> <p>And their topic is an important one: &#8220;7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer.&#8221; </p> <p><span id="more-37878"></span>In this 60(ish) minute webinar, you&#8217;ll discover:</p> <ul> <li>The &#8220;pro tips&#8221; that make the difference between ordinary writing and terrific writing.</li> <li>The serious mistake people make when they hear the advice to &#8220;write every day.&#8221;</li> <li>How Robert turned advice about studying philosophy into a killer writing secret.</li> <li>Sonia&#8217;s and Robert&#8217;s tricks to getting inside the heads of their readers.</li> <li>When you&#8217;re feeling stuck and uninspired, a simple 3-step process to decide what to write about.</li> <li>And the surprising way a vice like stubbornness can make you a better writer.</li> </ul> <p>This is an hour designed to take your writing skills to the next level, with two of the best voices in the business. And it&#8217;s free for Authority members &#8212; <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.copyblogger.com/notifications/master-class/" target="_blank">just register for the session as you normally do</a> early next week.</p> <p>For everyone else &#8230; well, you&#8217;ll need to join us inside Authority if you want in. <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.copyblogger.com/join-authority/" target="_blank">Learn how to do that here</a>.</p> <div class="author-box"><div><img alt='' src='http://0.gravatar.com/avatar/81c83444aed195de41d9e227bf13c2dc?s=100&amp;d=http%3A%2F%2F0.gravatar.com%2Favatar%2Fad516503a11cd5ca435acc9bb6523536%3Fs%3D100&amp;r=G' class='avatar avatar-100 photo' height='100' width='100' /> <span class="subheading">About the author</span><h3>Demian Farnworth</h3> <br><p>Demian Farnworth is Copyblogger Media's Chief Copywriter. Follow him on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://twitter.com/demianfarnworth" target="_blank">Twitter</a> or <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://plus.google.com/115630079405940076652/posts" target="_blank">Google+</a>.</p> </div></div><p></p> <p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a> appeared first on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p><Img align="left" border="0" height="1" width="1" style="border:0;float:left;margin:0;padding:0" hspace="0" src="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/i/51674345/0/copyblogger"> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/2013-essay-reminder/">Only One Week Left to Enter Copyblogger&#8217;s Essay Contest (and Compete for Insanely Useful Prizes)</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/2013-essay-deadline/">Here&#x2019;s Your Last Chance to Enter Copyblogger&#x2019;s Essay Contest (and Compete for Insanely Useful Prizes)</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/genesis-theme-showcase/">5 Dazzling Design Examples of What&#8217;s Possible with the Genesis Framework for WordPress</a></li></ul> 100% of Independent Publishers Who Do This Will Sell More of Their Work http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51617263/0/copyblogger~of-Independent-Publishers-Who-Do-This-Will-Sell-More-of-Their-Work/ Copyblogger urn:uuid:95d8f16e-d1e6-b9dd-6b43-b808f021a257 Thu, 05 Dec 2013 13:00:00 +0000 <p>Most independent authors and content creators aren’t thinking in terms of building product funnels when they write their books and stories. That is a mistake. Whether you’re writing fiction or nonfiction, smart writers who know how to build their catalog around funnels will always make more money directly with their words than writers who publish their<p><a class="more-link" href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51617263/0/copyblogger~of-Independent-Publishers-Who-Do-This-Will-Sell-More-of-Their-Work/" rel="nofollow">[ Continue Reading... ]</a></p><p></p> </p><p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51617263/0/copyblogger~of-Independent-Publishers-Who-Do-This-Will-Sell-More-of-Their-Work/">100% of Independent Publishers Who Do This Will Sell More of Their Work</a> appeared first on <a href="http://www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/essay-contest-winners/">These 5 Writers Won the First Copyblogger Essay Contest &#8230;</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/unforgettable-copywriting/">3 Ways the Magic of Dr. Seuss Can Help You Create Unforgettable Copy</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/how-elizabeth-gilbert-writes/">Here&#8217;s How Elizabeth Gilbert (Bestselling Author of Eat, Pray, Love) Writes</a></li></ul> <div class="jpack-share-top"><div class="share-before share-filled share-small" id="share-before-37317"><div class="twitter" id="twitter-before-37317" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/self-publishing-conversion/" data-text="100% of Independent Publishers Who Do This Will Sell More of Their Work" data-title="Tweet"></div><div class="googlePlus" id="googleplus-before-37317" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/self-publishing-conversion/" data-text="100% of Independent Publishers Who Do This Will Sell More of Their Work" data-title="+1"></div><div class="facebook" id="facebook-before-37317" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/self-publishing-conversion/" data-text="100% of Independent Publishers Who Do This Will Sell More of Their Work" data-title="Like"></div><div class="linkedin" id="linkedin-before-37317" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/self-publishing-conversion/" data-text="100% of Independent Publishers Who Do This Will Sell More of Their Work" data-title="Share"></div><div class="pinterest" id="pinterest-before-37317" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/self-publishing-conversion/" data-text="100% of Independent Publishers Who Do This Will Sell More of Their Work" data-title="Pin"></div></div> </div><p><img alt="Closeup image of a book" src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/650/book-funnel.jpg" width="650" /></p> <p>Most <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/professional-self-publishing/" target="_blank">independent authors and content creators</a> aren’t thinking in terms of building product funnels when they write their books and stories.</p> <p>That is a mistake.</p> <p>Whether you’re writing fiction or nonfiction, smart writers who know how to build their catalog around funnels will <em>always</em> make more money directly with their words than writers who publish their work using the old “hope and pray” business plan.</p> <p><span id="more-37317"></span>Here&#8217;s how you do it.</p> <h3>Be a <em>smarter</em> publisher</h3> <p>We wrote for our own sites and blogs like Copyblogger for years &#8212; about business, entrepreneurship, marketing, you name it. But we both made a major shift during 2012 and 2013, and we spent the last year writing and publishing 1.5 million words of fiction through our company <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~realmandsands.com" target="_blank">Realm &amp; Sands</a>.</p> <p>In the two years since Copyblogger ran <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/ebook-revolution/" target="_blank">this post about serialized fiction</a>, Sean has also published another two million words at his other company, Collective Inkwell, with David Wright.</p> <p>But none of those millions of words were left to sell based on chance.</p> <p>We wanted to make our full-time livings as authors &#8212; and since have &#8212; so we opted for something more certain.</p> <p>Our words are our art, yes. But once those words are scrubbed in the editing process, they became <i>products for sale</i>. And what do <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/imfsp/" target="_blank"><em>smart</em> marketers</a> do with products? Well, if they want to <em>sell</em> any of those products, they arrange them into funnels.</p> <p>Each week, we host the <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~selfpublishingpodcast.com" target="_blank">Self Publishing Podcast</a>. In a year and a half of our show, the most frequently visited topic is how to build funnels.</p> <p>Why?</p> <p>Because <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~entreproducer.com/author-entrepreneur/" target="_blank">applying proven marketing principles to independent authorship</a> is how successful indie publishers turn a “luck of the draw” marketplace into a sound enterprise with a stable income source.</p> <p>In our opinion, putting your work into product funnels is the very best (and most important) thing an author can do to increase sales &#8230; assuming you’ve created an excellent and professional-looking family of products.</p> <p>Ready to sell some books? Well then, let’s take a look at “Funnels 101,” starting with exactly what they are and why you should care.</p> <h3>What is a funnel and why does it matter?</h3> <p>Simply put, a product funnel is a way of organizing your works so that one product leads logically into another.</p> <p>You do this by setting up a series of pointers (in the backs of books, in product descriptions) in order to steer readers to the places you want them to go, and to give them compelling reasons to do so.</p> <p>Understand: A good funnel isn’t a straight chain, where Product A simply leads to Product B.</p> <p>It’s a <i>funnel</i> &#8212; which, like a kitchen funnel, is wider at the top and narrower at the bottom.</p> <p>You want to scoop as many people into the top of your funnel as possible, then understand that they will sift apart &#8212; some sticking with you and others deciding your stuff isn’t their cup of tea &#8212; as they move downward.</p> <p>To put some labels on this, think about three products you have for sale: Products A, B, and C. These products can be books, novellas, short stories, short story collections, or other written works. If you write nonfiction and sell consulting or are available for speaking gigs, those products can also be courses, speaking, and consulting.</p> <p>Now, think about something for a second: If you ultimately want to sell a big book bundle for $9.99 or consulting for $499, does it make sense for the very first thing a potential customer sees from you to be that big-ticket item?</p> <p>Absolutely not.</p> <p>Ten bucks is a lot to pay for an ebook by an unknown author, and $500 is a lot to pay for anything. If you want to sell those later items, you’ll need to sell them <em>last</em> &#8212; which, to bring this metaphor full circle, is what happens at the very bottom of your funnel. This is where a few die-hard devotees (or true fans) remain out of that huge group who entered the funnel at the top.</p> <p>Let’s call your big-ticket item Product C, at the bottom of the funnel. You can’t usually sell that one right off the bat. You must prove yourself to the customer with Products A and B, which they’ve already passed by on their way down the funnel, before you can hope to earn that sale.</p> <p>Remember: Products at the top of the funnel must be easy to consume.</p> <p>Product A, which casts your widest net and scoops in as many prospective readers as possible, should ideally be free so that there is no barrier to entry for anyone even remotely interested in what you eventually want to sell.</p> <p>Product B can be a bit more expensive. You’ll work your way down further and further until, for a certain focused segment of customers, they are invested and confident enough to pick up your Product C &#8230; or D, or F, or however deep your funnel goes.</p> <p>So that’s what a funnel is. Now, here is why having one (or more than one; we have around 15 between us) is so important if you want to sell books.</p> <h3>It&#8217;s easier to keep a customer than to gain a new one</h3> <p>What do you think loyalty cards are for? What do you think “returning customer discounts” are for?</p> <p>The merchants you shop with, if they’re smart, know that on average it will cost them five times as much to get a new customer as it will to keep an old one. That’s why <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.remarkable-communication.com/relationship-marketing-series-2-dont-be-a-bad-boyfriend/" target="_blank">intelligent merchants constantly bend over backward for their existing customers</a>.</p> <p>For you, with your funnel, this means it is easier to sell a customer on Product C if they have already bought and enjoyed Product B. And they’ll be much more likely to buy Product B if they have already found Product A worthy of their time and attention.</p> <p>The best way to sell any product in your catalog is to sell it to someone who is already a customer. You can do that by hooking them in with the products at the top of your funnel, which are easier for them to consume because they are cheap or free.</p> <h3>Each time someone says &#8220;Yes,&#8221; the next &#8220;Yes&#8221; becomes more likely</h3> <p>Old-school vacuum cleaner salesmen asked prospects a lot of questions.</p> <p>If they were classically trained and good at their craft, they would only ask questions that they knew in advance would be answered with an easy, straightforward &#8220;Yes.&#8221;</p> <p>The questions didn’t even have to have anything to do with what they were selling: “Isn’t this a beautiful day?” “Don’t you love it when your house is clean?” Etc. Those questions were <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/get-to-yes/" target="_blank">easy for people to answer yes to</a>, so they tended to do so.</p> <p>When the salesman finally got down to a much harder question to answer in the affirmative (“Would you like to buy this vacuum cleaner?”), the prospect’s mind would already be used to saying yes, and their likelihood of buying would be higher.</p> <p>Your product funnel asks those questions <em>for you</em>.</p> <p>Product A, which should be free, is very easy to say yes to. Product B might be a $3-$5 book. That’s a harder yes, but they already gave an affirmative to A and liked it, so they’re an easier sell.</p> <p>After <i>that</i> yes &#8212; again, for a smaller but more ideal segment of the buying population &#8212; you’ll have an easier time getting buyers for the big bundle.</p> <p>You might be thinking this sounds complicated. It isn’t.</p> <p>In fact &#8230;</p> <h3>You already understand funnels</h3> <p>We both have wives who really like the sitcom <i>Friends</i>, so we both own the full DVD set, containing all 10 seasons’ worth of episodes.</p> <p>But the process that led us to buy all those DVDs &#8212; not a cheap purchase &#8212; was a funnel.</p> <p>If you were getting confused in the previous section, allow yourself to forget about it. Instead think of us with our DVDs.</p> <p>At first, the networks gave that show to us for free. Sure, the show was getting paid, but <em>we</em> didn’t pay that price. We just sat back, with our over-the-air-with-no-digital-converter TVs, and absorbed all of that entertainment for free.</p> <p>We said yes to that show over and over because there was no barrier to entry. And then in the end, we bought in &#8212; ultimately buying the DVD set &#8212; because we’d been given a taste and knew we liked it.</p> <p>Want another example?</p> <p>Johnny heard about the Angry Birds app and decided to see what the fuss was about. The app was free for the iPad and iPhone. He downloaded it and found it amusing.</p> <p>More importantly, Johnny&#8217;s son thought it was amusing and played until he had 3-starred every level. He played Angry Birds Seasons ($0.99) to death next, then got so obsessed that they ended up buying all sorts of Angry Birds plushies.</p> <p>They bought an Angry Birds birthday cake. They bought Angry Birds Space, Angry Birds <i>Star Wars</i>, you name it.</p> <p><em>That</em> is a funnel.</p> <p>They paid nothing, then $0.99, then more and more for merchandise.</p> <p>If the first game hadn’t been free, Johnny never would have tried it. Even $0.99 cents would have been too much.</p> <p><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/make-money-with-free/" target="_blank">Keep that in mind</a>.</p> <p>You may reason that a few dollars (or $0.99 cents) is such a small price that no one will think twice about paying it, but that’s only partially true. It is equally true that the most casual of visitors will turn away from $0.99 cents because they are curious &#8230; but not curious enough.</p> <h3>Funnels require multiple products</h3> <p>We’ve just implied that you might consider making your book free, like the original Angry Birds game. You might think that’s a hideous idea.</p> <p>Well, right. If you only have one book, that’s true.</p> <p>But if you have several, it matters a lot less.</p> <p>Let’s say you have two related books, and each sells one copy per day. Wouldn’t you make the first one free if, by doing so, you thought you could sell three copies a day of the other?</p> <p>The more books, stories, reports, tutorials, novellas that you have, the more options you’ll have at your disposal for ways to promote and funnel.</p> <p>You must be able to send readers from one book to another to another &#8212; and, if you want a really <i>good</i> funnel, to a bundle of many books &#8212; and that <em>only</em> happens after you’ve ushered plenty of products to market.</p> <h3>Different kinds of funnels require different structures</h3> <p>The more expensive the “deepest” product in your funnel, the more items you’ll need upstream.</p> <p>If you’re a consultant who also writes nonfiction books and your prime consulting package costs $1,000, you’ll need a lot of stuff in the funnel ahead of that package.</p> <p>The part of the funnel that the book covers will be at the very top, because books don’t generally sell for $20, and self-publishers (at least with Amazon’s current commission structure) generally want to stop at $9.99 because that’s where the 70 percent cutoff is.</p> <p>But if all you have is a book and a short story, you can generally make a simple two-step funnel: an entry product (the short story) that’s free and a book for $5 or so. You could also make the short story $0.99, but that will mean a lot fewer people in your funnel.</p> <p>As long as it goes from a low-barrier entry point designed to catch as many prospects as possible to a high-barrier product that will appeal to fewer people, it’s a funnel. The rest will depend on your specific situation.</p> <h3>Funnel sequences must be logical</h3> <p>Johnny has one book with no funnel: his first novel, <i>The Bialy Pimps</i>. Not coincidentally, it almost never sells.</p> <p>The reason there is no funnel with that book is because it’s related to nothing.</p> <p>Johnny says he’ll one day get to a short story featuring one of the characters from <i>The Bialy Pimps</i> and use that as his entry point, but he’s been working on all the successful funnels that were built smartly from the start.</p> <p>He really wishes he knew then what he does now.</p> <h3>An average writer with a tight funnel will always beat a brilliant writer with a poor funnel.</h3> <p>Or no funnel whatsoever, which is the case for most indie writers.</p> <p>Artist types hate to hear this, but it’s true: You can be an excellent writer who creates brilliant art, but unless you know some serious heavy hitters who can tell the world that your book is awesome, your brilliance will never be seen without a <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/content-marketing/" target="_blank">solid marketing strategy</a>.</p> <p>To be appreciated, brilliance must be seen. Have you ever heard that koan about how if a tree falls and nobody’s around to hear it, does it make a sound?</p> <p>Yeah. That.</p> <h3>Our best example</h3> <p>In July of this year, Realm &amp; Sands published a stark sci-fi (we’re calling it “future history”) serial called <i>The Beam.</i> It was a hard project and took twice the time we would normally spend writing <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.amazon.com/Unicorn-Western-Johnny-B-Truant-ebook/dp/B00AR7YTBM/" target="_blank">westerns with unicorns</a>.</p> <p>It was important to get our funnel right.</p> <p>We wanted to charge $9.99 for the finished project &#8212; a price that the indie community loudly stated was too high for indies (to which we stated, “It sounds like you need a better funnel&#8221;). So our way of leading prospective readers into it had to be perfect.</p> <p>We talk a lot about <i>The Beam</i> on our podcast because of its scope, and our listeners are probably more curious about <i>The Beam</i> than any other title.</p> <p>Fortunately for us and them, the story costs nothing to try. The first book in the six-book season is free. Each book (around 25,000 words) is $2.99 after that. All six are $9.99, which is a relative bargain.</p> <p>Your work must be good. If it isn’t, you won’t have buyers moving from three to 10 dollars —- it’s definitely a jump.</p> <p>But if it is good, and if you have funnels gracefully leading readers from one spot to the next, then it’s entirely possible that your &#8220;free&#8221; title might make you more money than anything else you write.</p> <p class="alert"><em><strong>About the Author:</strong> Johnny B. Truant and Sean Platt published 1.5 million words and built full-time self-publishing careers from scratch in 2013. In their comprehensive self-publishing guide <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~selfpublishingpodcast.com/wpr" target="_blank"><i>Write. Publish. Repeat.</i></a> they tell you everything you need to know about how to do the same. The book is half price for launch (and comes with a bonus book) through Friday, December 6, 2014.</em></p><p></p> <p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/self-publishing-conversion/">100% of Independent Publishers Who Do This Will Sell More of Their Work</a> appeared first on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p><Img align="left" border="0" height="1" width="1" style="border:0;float:left;margin:0;padding:0" hspace="0" src="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/i/51617263/0/copyblogger"> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/essay-contest-winners/">These 5 Writers Won the First Copyblogger Essay Contest &#8230;</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/unforgettable-copywriting/">3 Ways the Magic of Dr. Seuss Can Help You Create Unforgettable Copy</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/how-elizabeth-gilbert-writes/">Here&#8217;s How Elizabeth Gilbert (Bestselling Author of Eat, Pray, Love) Writes</a></li></ul> 5 Dazzling Design Examples of What’s Possible with the Genesis Framework for WordPress http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51538926/0/copyblogger~Dazzling-Design-Examples-of-Whats-Possible-with-the-Genesis-Framework-for-WordPress/ Copyblogger urn:uuid:25f75665-dfd2-1c82-12c6-6252daa02d72 Wed, 04 Dec 2013 13:00:00 +0000 <p>I am so sick of this doggone website. It had been a good 18 months since I&#8217;d updated the design. It didn&#8217;t use HTML5. It wasn&#8217;t mobile responsive. And the form and function of the site no longer fit the content as well as it could. Worst of all, it just looked &#8230; old. It<p><a class="more-link" href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51538926/0/copyblogger~Dazzling-Design-Examples-of-Whats-Possible-with-the-Genesis-Framework-for-WordPress/" rel="nofollow">[ Continue Reading... ]</a></p><p></p> </p><p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51538926/0/copyblogger~Dazzling-Design-Examples-of-Whats-Possible-with-the-Genesis-Framework-for-WordPress/">5 Dazzling Design Examples of What&#8217;s Possible with the Genesis Framework for WordPress</a> appeared first on <a href="http://www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/">Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it&#x2019;s too Late</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/personalize-premium-theme/">4 Easy Ways Non-Coders Can Add Personality to a WordPress Theme</a></li></ul> <div class="jpack-share-top"><div class="share-before share-filled share-small" id="share-before-37353"><div class="twitter" id="twitter-before-37353" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/genesis-theme-showcase/" data-text="5 Dazzling Design Examples of What&#8217;s Possible with the Genesis Framework for WordPress" data-title="Tweet"></div><div class="googlePlus" id="googleplus-before-37353" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/genesis-theme-showcase/" data-text="5 Dazzling Design Examples of What&#8217;s Possible with the Genesis Framework for WordPress" data-title="+1"></div><div class="facebook" id="facebook-before-37353" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/genesis-theme-showcase/" data-text="5 Dazzling Design Examples of What&#8217;s Possible with the Genesis Framework for WordPress" data-title="Like"></div><div class="linkedin" id="linkedin-before-37353" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/genesis-theme-showcase/" data-text="5 Dazzling Design Examples of What&#8217;s Possible with the Genesis Framework for WordPress" data-title="Share"></div><div class="pinterest" id="pinterest-before-37353" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/genesis-theme-showcase/" data-text="5 Dazzling Design Examples of What&#8217;s Possible with the Genesis Framework for WordPress" data-title="Pin"></div></div> </div><p><img alt="411 screenshot" src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/650/411-theme.jpg" width="650" /></p> <p><em>I am so sick of this doggone website.</em></p> <p>It had been a good 18 months since I&#8217;d updated the design. It didn&#8217;t use HTML5. It wasn&#8217;t <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/responsive-wordpress-themes/" target="_blank">mobile responsive</a>. And the form and function of the site no longer fit the content as well as it could.</p> <p>Worst of all, it just looked &#8230; old. It felt tired. I needed a change, but I&#8217;m no coder. Nor did I want to pay for a custom design. </p> <p>Ever had a similar string of thoughts yourself about your own site?</p> <p><span id="more-37353"></span>Here&#8217;s how to remedy that &#8230;</p> <h3>It&#8217;s time to get re-energized</h3> <p>The dissatisfaction I was feeling with my site was quickly alleviated when I installed one of our new Genesis Pro themes &#8212; <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/themes/agency/" target="_blank">Agency Pro</a>. (Working for Copyblogger does have its perks.) </p> <p>Just a couple fun hours of tinkering and customizing later, I had a brand-new, cutting-edge design that would have been impossible for me to do by myself and would have cost me thousands of dollars to hire someone to do for me. </p> <p>I felt great about <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~assemblycall.com/" target="_blank">my site</a> again and energized to create new content for it. </p> <p>Want to get re-energized about your own site? </p> <p>Here are five other sites that serve as pristine examples of how you can have a modern, mobile-ready website darn near right out of the box &#8230; all for less than $100.</p> <h3>Be bold, be Beautiful</h3> <p>These first two websites employ our new <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/themes/beautiful/" target="_blank">Beautiful Pro Theme</a>. </p> <p>This first site, <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~AllisonVesterfelt.com" target="_blank">AllisonVesterfelt.com</a>, shows you how naturally alluring the design for Beautiful is with only basic customizations being made. </p> <p><img alt="Allison Vesterfelt screenshot" src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/650/allison-vesterfelt.jpg" width="650" /></p> <p>Compare it to <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/themes/beautiful/#" target="_blank">the demo</a> and you will see that it didn&#8217;t take much for <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://twitter.com/dvest" target="_blank">the Vesterfelts</a> to take Beautiful and make it completely their own.</p> <p>Taking Beautiful even further is <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~WhitneyCapps.com" target="_blank">WhitneyCapps.com</a> &#8230;</p> <p>This site, designed by <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://twitter.com/erinulrich" target="_blank">Erin Ulrich</a>, adds a textured background and substitutes a stylish text logo for the horizontal header image.</p> <p><img alt="Whitney Capps screenshot" src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/650/whitney-capps.jpg" width="650" /></p> <p>These two sites put the simplicity and versatility of Genesis on full display.</p> <p>You can get a gorgeous new design right out of the box, or you can take it to the next level by employing one of the <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.studiopress.com/genesis-developers" target="_blank">Genesis community&#8217;s many talented developers</a> to add even more of your own unique flair.</p> <p>See the <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/themes/beautiful/#demo-full" target="_blank">Beautiful Pro Theme demo here</a>, or <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://my.studiopress.com/checkout/?product_id=165267" target="_blank">purchase Beautiful for immediate use on your site here</a>. </p> <h3>Beyond design with Sixteen Nine</h3> <p><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/themes/sixteen-nine/" target="_blank">Sixteen Nine</a>, the recently released child theme that all <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~websynthesis.com/pricing" target="_blank">Synthesis customers</a> receive upon signing up, keeps the nav bar and widgets simple so that the audience&#8217;s full attention is on the content.</p> <p>You can see this in action at PlacesBeyond.com, a site chronicling a motorcycle journey from California to Tierra del Fuego, Argentina.</p> <p><img alt="Places Beyond screenshot" src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/650/places-beyond.jpg" /></p> <p>Check out the <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/themes/sixteen-nine/#demo-full" target="_blank">Sixteen Nine demo here</a>, and you&#8217;ll see how closely Places Beyond sticks with the basic format of the child theme while still carving out a unique feel thanks to the design acumen of <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://twitter.com/houseofgrays" target="_blank">Megan Gray</a>.</p> <p>If you are not a Synthesis customer, you can <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://my.studiopress.com/checkout/?product_id=155243" target="_blank">get Sixteen Nine for your site here</a>.</p> <h3>Innovating with eleven40</h3> <p>The <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/themes/eleven40/" target="_blank">eleven40 theme</a> has long been one of StudioPress&#8217; best sellers. With the additions made to the Pro version &#8212; HTML5 markup, mobile responsiveness, a layout that incorporates modern design trends &#8212; eleven40 will surely remain at or near the top of the most popular list.</p> <p><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~TodaysInnovativeWoman.com" target="_blank">TodaysInnovativeWoman.com</a> is an impressive example of what is possible when a solid theme is infused with the creativity of a great designer like <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://twitter.com/jenniferbourn" target="_blank">Jennifer Bourn</a>.</p> <p><img alt="Todays Innovative Woman screenshot" src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/650/innovative-woman.jpg" width="650" /></p> <p>You can compare Jennifer&#8217;s work to <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/themes/eleven40/#demo-full" target="_blank">the eleven40 demo here</a>, or you can dive right in and <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://my.studiopress.com/checkout/?product_id=71" target="_blank">add eleven40 to your site here</a>.</p> <h3>Write away with Wintersong</h3> <p>This final example is another that shows the out-of-the-box power of Genesis, specifically the <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/themes/wintersong/" target="_blank">Wintersong Pro theme</a>. </p> <p>Wintersong is one of many StudioPress themes that began as the design of StudioPress founder Brian Gardner&#8217;s personal website. (You can see the latest such design, The 411, <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/themes/the-411/" target="_blank">right here</a> and in the image at the top of this post.)</p> <p>The site pictured below, <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~just-thauna.com/" target="_blank">Just-Thauna.com</a>, takes the base Wintersong design and adds nothing more than a custom header image (which can be uploaded and formatted in less than a minute from the dashboard) and a new color scheme to create an ideal look for Thauna&#8217;s personal blog.</p> <p><img alt="Just Thauna screenshot" src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/650/thuana.jpg" width="650" /></p> <p>Thauna is a designer herself, <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~designbythauna.com/" target="_blank">specializing in Genesis designs</a>. So she knows how to add flair to a Genesis site, even if she didn&#8217;t do too much to Wintersong for her own site &#8212; she didn&#8217;t need to. </p> <p>Check out the <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/themes/wintersong/#demo-full" target="_blank">demo for Wintersong here</a>, or go ahead and <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://my.studiopress.com/checkout/?product_id=164166" target="_blank">grab a copy for yourself here</a>.</p> <h3>101,000+ people take WordPress further with StudioPress</h3> <p><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/themes/genesis/" target="_blank"><img class="right" src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/genesis-2-icon.png" alt="Image of Genesis 2.0 Logo" title="Introducing Genesis 2.0: The Next Evolution of Your WordPress Website" width="300"/></a></p> <p>Our <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.studiopress.com/features" target="_blank">Genesis Framework for WordPress</a> empowers you to quickly and easily build incredible websites with WordPress.</p> <p>With search-optimized code and functions, 55 turn-key designs, state-of-the-art security, and unlimited support, updates, and websites you can build, Mashable calls Genesis the “best of the best” among premium WordPress themes.</p> <p>Serious online publishers trust Genesis to provide a solid foundation for their sites. By serious, I mean people planning to get somewhere with this Internet thing.</p> <p>Whether you’re a novice, or an advanced developer, Genesis provides you with the rock-solid infrastructure to take WordPress places you never thought it could go.</p> <p><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.studiopress.com/features" target="_blank">Pick up Genesis (and a child theme) today!</a></p> <h3>Need a little help?</h3> <p>If you have questions about Genesis that you&#8217;d like to get answered before purchasing, <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.studiopress.com/contact" target="_blank">please contact our Support Division directly</a>.</p> <p>If you are an existing StudioPress customer, please <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~my.studiopress.com/" target="_blank">log in to MyStudioPress</a> for <em>all support questions</em>.</p> <p>For <em>non-support related discussions</em> about WordPress, CSS, design, and site feedback, please jump into the <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.studiopress.com/forums/" target="_blank">StudioPress Community Forums</a> anytime.</p> <p>Thanks!</p> <div class="author-box"><div><img alt='' src='http://1.gravatar.com/avatar/f381b51fbadc229e378a27d6546541d2?s=100&amp;d=http%3A%2F%2F1.gravatar.com%2Favatar%2Fad516503a11cd5ca435acc9bb6523536%3Fs%3D100&amp;r=G' class='avatar avatar-100 photo' height='100' width='100' /> <span class="subheading">About the author</span><h3>Jerod Morris</h3> <br><p>Jerod Morris is the Director of Content for Copyblogger Media and a founding member of the <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~websynthesis.com/">Synthesis Managed WordPress Hosting team</a>. Get more from Jerod on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~twitter.com/JerodMorris">Twitter</a> and <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://plus.google.com/u/0/110160311256276532162" rel="author">Google+</a>.</p> </div></div><p></p> <p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/genesis-theme-showcase/">5 Dazzling Design Examples of What&#8217;s Possible with the Genesis Framework for WordPress</a> appeared first on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p><Img align="left" border="0" height="1" width="1" style="border:0;float:left;margin:0;padding:0" hspace="0" src="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/i/51538926/0/copyblogger"> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/">Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it&#x2019;s too Late</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/personalize-premium-theme/">4 Easy Ways Non-Coders Can Add Personality to a WordPress Theme</a></li></ul> Are You a Copywriting Hotshot? Test Your Skills in an Email Marketing Duel http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51471102/0/copyblogger~Are-You-a-Copywriting-Hotshot-Test-Your-Skills-in-an-Email-Marketing-Duel/ Copyblogger urn:uuid:06c9688b-9982-662b-80e7-a11782f3c208 Tue, 03 Dec 2013 13:00:00 +0000 <p>The deadline for this contest has closed, but stay tuned for a post in early January announcing the winners of the split test! Picture this. Sonia Simone and me in an advertising agency conference room. She pitches her headline to the account executive. I pitch mine &#8230; &#8230; and promptly get blown out of the<p><a class="more-link" href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51471102/0/copyblogger~Are-You-a-Copywriting-Hotshot-Test-Your-Skills-in-an-Email-Marketing-Duel/" rel="nofollow">[ Continue Reading... ]</a></p><p></p> </p><p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51471102/0/copyblogger~Are-You-a-Copywriting-Hotshot-Test-Your-Skills-in-an-Email-Marketing-Duel/">Are You a Copywriting Hotshot? Test Your Skills in an Email Marketing Duel</a> appeared first on <a href="http://www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p> <div class="jpack-share-top"><div class="share-before share-filled share-small" id="share-before-37660"><div class="twitter" id="twitter-before-37660" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/email-contest-2013/" data-text="Are You a Copywriting Hotshot? Test Your Skills in an Email Marketing Duel" data-title="Tweet"></div><div class="googlePlus" id="googleplus-before-37660" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/email-contest-2013/" data-text="Are You a Copywriting Hotshot? Test Your Skills in an Email Marketing Duel" data-title="+1"></div><div class="facebook" id="facebook-before-37660" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/email-contest-2013/" data-text="Are You a Copywriting Hotshot? Test Your Skills in an Email Marketing Duel" data-title="Like"></div><div class="linkedin" id="linkedin-before-37660" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/email-contest-2013/" data-text="Are You a Copywriting Hotshot? Test Your Skills in an Email Marketing Duel" data-title="Share"></div><div class="pinterest" id="pinterest-before-37660" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/email-contest-2013/" data-text="Are You a Copywriting Hotshot? Test Your Skills in an Email Marketing Duel" data-title="Pin"></div></div> </div><p><img src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/650/air-mail-stamp.jpg" width="650" /></p> <p><em>The deadline for this contest has closed, but stay tuned for a post in early January announcing the winners of the split test!</em></p> <p>Picture this. <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/author/sonia/" target="_blank">Sonia Simone</a> and me in an advertising agency conference room.</p> <p>She pitches her headline to the account executive.</p> <p>I pitch mine &#8230;</p> <p>&#8230; and promptly get blown out of the water. It doesn&#8217;t matter which headline is better. Sonia is a legend. So the account executive goes with the better copywriter, not the better headline, 10 times out of 10.</p> <p><strong>So let&#8217;s try scenario B &#8230;</strong></p> <p><span id="more-37660"></span>This time, we don&#8217;t ask the account exec’s opinion on which headline is better. (Steaks-and-strategy sessions with the client aside, he doesn’t know anyway.)</p> <p>This time, after Sonia presents her headline, I whip off one of the dainty white gloves I&#8217;m prone to wear, slap her across the face, and say, &#8220;Madame, I demand satisfaction! I challenge you to a duel!&#8221;</p> <h3>When you don&#8217;t know the answer, let the customer decide</h3> <p>I wouldn&#8217;t let Sonia choose pistols at dawn. Instead, our weapon would be a split test.</p> <p>Half of prospective customers would be exposed to Sonia&#8217;s headline and half to mine. And then we&#8217;d see, under real-world conditions where customers don’t even know they’re making a choice, which headline was really more effective.</p> <p>On the surface of it, testing your copy seems like a great way to improve conversion and learn more about your customers. And it is. As Brian Clark says, <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/test-and-tweak/" target="_blank">&#8220;Conversion optimization is the coolest thing.&#8221;</a></p> <h3>But beyond the customer, think how A/B testing can help <em>you</em></h3> <p>As a writer, I pride myself on my pitching ability. </p> <p>But &#8230; I still hate pitching. At heart, I’m a writer, not a salesman.</p> <p>So, imagine, if instead of having to pitch and convince the account executive or the client why your headline is better than the jargon-filled, scalable-automated-solution they normally prefer &#8230; you could just <em>show</em> them.</p> <p>Let us show you how it&#8217;s done &#8230;</p> <h3>Give us your best subject line for a chance to win a ticket to Email Summit 2014 (plus hotel)</h3> <p>To give you a real example of A/B testing you can participate in, and test your copywriting mettle, I’m not going to challenge Sonia to a duel. </p> <p>I’m challenging <em>you</em>.</p> <p>To be more specific, Copyblogger and MarketingExperiments are pitting our audiences against each other for an A/B testing duel.</p> <p>If you scroll down, you’ll see the exact copy of an email we are going to send promoting <em>MarketingSherpa Email Summit</em> in Las Vegas. </p> <h3>We’re asking you to write the best subject line you can think of, and leave it as a comment for this blog post.</h3> <p>Then Sonia and the Copyblogger team will read each and every comment and hand-pick the five subject lines they think will perform best. We’ll pick five subject lines from the MarketingExperiments blog as well (you can see the <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.marketingexperiments.com/blog/research-topics/email-marketing/copyblogger-subject-line-contest.html" target="_blank">blog post announcing this contest to our audience here</a>).</p> <p>We&#8217;ll then run all 10 of those subject lines in a split test.</p> <p>The writer of the subject line that generates the largest number of unique clickthroughs will receive a complimentary ticket to Email Summit 2014. We’ll even put you up in the host hotel, the Aria resort, for two nights.</p> <p>The writer of the subject line that gets the highest open rate (clickthrough rate is our primary KPI, or key performance indicator, but opens will be a secondary KPI), will receive complimentary access to the <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.meclabs.com/training/online-course/email-messaging/overview" target="_blank">MECLABS Email Messaging Online Course</a>.</p> <p>Rule Number 1, <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.youtube.com/watch?v=tCWjo1ymhGs" target="_blank">no touching of the hair or face</a>. </p> <p><a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.marketingexperiments.com/blog/marketingexperiments-copyblogger-subject-line-copywriting-contest" target="_blank">As for the rest of the rules, they’re right here.</a> Deadline is December 10, 2013.</p> <p>Make sense? Great, let&#8217;s see what you’ve got. Below is the email we will be sending. Write your best subject line, and leave it as a comment to this blog post. Easy peasy.</p> <blockquote><p> [Send Dates: December 16-20, 2013] <br> [Sender: Pamela Markey] <br> [Audiences: MarketingSherpa + MarketingExperiments lists] <br> [Subject Line:] TBD</p> <p>Hello [xxxx],</p> <p>The last day to take advantage of the Early Bird Discount ($300 off) for Email Summit 2014 tickets is <strong>January 9, 2014</strong>. If you plan to be out of the office for the holidays, <strong>be sure to book your ticket before your vacation</strong> so you don’t miss out on this special rate.</p> <p><strong>MarketingSherpa <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.meclabs.com/training/marketing-summit/email-summit-2014/overview?utm_source=111513B2C&#038;utm_medium=Summit&#038;utm_campaign=Summit-EM-2014" target="_blank">Email Summit 2014</a></strong> promises to provide you with a great experience and an opportunity to learn what is and isn’t working in email marketing today. All case study presentations focus on <strong>real results with practical concepts</strong> you can use to do your job better. Come <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.meclabs.com/training/marketing-summit/email-summit-2014/agenda" target="_blank">learn from your peers</a> at companies like 3M, Dell, Porsche and Whirlpool.</p> <p>If you want to learn how to grow your list, boost your performance and increase email ROI, join us at the Aria Resort &#038; Casino Las Vegas on Feb. 17-20, 2014 for Email Summit 2014. Order your tickets today so you <strong>don’t miss out on the <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.meclabs.com/training/marketing-summit/email-summit-2014/tickets" target="_blank">Early Bird price</a></strong> before it <strong>expires January 9, 2014</strong>.</p> <p>If you have any questions, please feel free to email me anytime at p.markey@meclabs.com.</p> <p>I hope to see you there!</p> <p>Sincerely, <br> Pamela Markey <br> Senior Director, Marketing <br> MarketingSherpa </p></blockquote> <h3>Recap:</h3> <ul> <li>To enter the contest, write the strongest email subject line for the above message that you can.</li> <li>Leave your entry as a comment in this blog post.</li> <li>The best five entries from Copyblogger will be tested, along with the best five entries from the MarketingExperiments blog.</li> <li>The writer of the subject line that generates the largest number of unique clickthroughs will receive a complimentary ticket to Email Summit 2014, and we&#8217;ll put you up in the host hotel, the Aria resort, for two nights.</li> <li>The writer of the subject line that gets the highest open rate will receive complimentary access to the MECLABS Email Messaging Online Course.</li> <li>The deadline is December 10, 2013.</li> </ul> <p>Fire up your creative engines, and may the best writer win! </p> <p class="alert"><em><strong>About the Author:</strong> Daniel Burstein has 13 years of experience in copywriting, editing, internal communications, sales enablement, and field marketing communications. He oversees all editorial content coming from the MarketingExperiments and MarketingSherpa brands, while helping to shape the editorial direction for <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.meclabs.com/" target="_blank">MECLABS</a>. Daniel is also a frequent speaker and moderator at live events and on webinars.</em></p><p></p> <p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/email-contest-2013/">Are You a Copywriting Hotshot? Test Your Skills in an Email Marketing Duel</a> appeared first on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p><Img align="left" border="0" height="1" width="1" style="border:0;float:left;margin:0;padding:0" hspace="0" src="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/i/51471102/0/copyblogger"> Could Reading Children’s Books Help You Become a Better Business Writer? http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51390078/0/copyblogger~Could-Reading-Childrens-Books-Help-You-Become-a-Better-Business-Writer/ Copyblogger urn:uuid:c0329a7a-e8d6-1cae-1509-a109936a4e6a Mon, 02 Dec 2013 13:00:00 +0000 <p>I don&#8217;t care how old you are &#8212; 17 or 70 &#8212; as a writer you can benefit from reading children&#8217;s stories. Stories like Madeline, Interrupting Chicken, Henry&#8217;s Freedom Box, The Giving Tree, and I Took the Moon for a Walk. Keep in mind, the reason these are considered &#8220;children&#8217;s&#8221; books is not because of<p><a class="more-link" href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51390078/0/copyblogger~Could-Reading-Childrens-Books-Help-You-Become-a-Better-Business-Writer/" rel="nofollow">[ Continue Reading... ]</a></p><p></p> </p><p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/51390078/0/copyblogger~Could-Reading-Childrens-Books-Help-You-Become-a-Better-Business-Writer/">Could Reading Children&#8217;s Books Help You Become a Better Business Writer?</a> appeared first on <a href="http://www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/">Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it&#x2019;s too Late</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/2013-essay-deadline/">Here&#x2019;s Your Last Chance to Enter Copyblogger&#x2019;s Essay Contest (and Compete for Insanely Useful Prizes)</a></li></ul> <div class="jpack-share-top"><div class="share-before share-filled share-small" id="share-before-37472"><div class="twitter" id="twitter-before-37472" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/read-childrens-books/" data-text="Could Reading Children&#8217;s Books Help You Become a Better Business Writer?" data-title="Tweet"></div><div class="googlePlus" id="googleplus-before-37472" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/read-childrens-books/" data-text="Could Reading Children&#8217;s Books Help You Become a Better Business Writer?" data-title="+1"></div><div class="facebook" id="facebook-before-37472" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/read-childrens-books/" data-text="Could Reading Children&#8217;s Books Help You Become a Better Business Writer?" data-title="Like"></div><div class="linkedin" id="linkedin-before-37472" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/read-childrens-books/" data-text="Could Reading Children&#8217;s Books Help You Become a Better Business Writer?" data-title="Share"></div><div class="pinterest" id="pinterest-before-37472" data-url="http://www.copyblogger.com/read-childrens-books/" data-text="Could Reading Children&#8217;s Books Help You Become a Better Business Writer?" data-title="Pin"></div></div> </div><p><img src="http://netdna.copyblogger.com/images/650/child-hands-painted.jpg" width="650" /></p> <p>I don&#8217;t care how old you are &#8212; 17 or 70 &#8212; as a <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/copywriting-101/" target="_blank">writer</a> you can benefit from reading children&#8217;s stories.</p> <p>Stories like <em>Madeline</em>, <em>Interrupting Chicken</em>, <em>Henry&#8217;s Freedom Box</em>, <em>The Giving Tree</em>, and <em>I Took the Moon for a Walk</em>.</p> <p>Keep in mind, the reason these are considered &#8220;children&#8217;s&#8221; books is <em>not</em> because of the material. </p> <p><span id="more-37472"></span>Behind each of these simple, clear, easy-to-read books is a complex story:</p> <ul> <li>A scary trip to the hospital</li> <li>A slave who mails himself to freedom</li> <li>A boy who ravages a generous and selfless tree</li> </ul> <p>These are &#8220;children&#8217;s&#8221; stories because in each book the writer crystallizes a story into one clear, concise, and compelling message in about 40 pages, with just 50 (or fewer) words per page.</p> <p>Out with the four-pound novel, in with the seven-ounce anecdote.</p> <p>Perfect for the 4-to-7 age range &#8230; and perfect for telling your business story. </p> <p>Let me explain.</p> <h3>Why should you read children&#8217;s books?</h3> <p>To become better storytellers, our mentors and teachers <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/how-to-read/" target="_blank">tell us to read</a> &#8212; and <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/surprising-books-for-writers/" target="_blank">read widely</a>. We are wise to follow their advice.</p> <p>Why? Stories are important to business and marketing. </p> <p>Our own beloved <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/marketing-stories/" target="_blank">Sonia Simone put it nicely</a>:</p> <blockquote><p>Here on Copyblogger, you’ve seen us talk many times about how to tell a terrific marketing story.</p> <p>Why? Because stories are fundamental to how we communicate as human beings. Tell the right story and you can capture attention, entertain, enlighten, and persuade &#8230; all in the course of just a few minutes.</p> <p>Stories are memorable and shareable &#8212; and those are two of the most important aspects of the very best content.</p></blockquote> <p>It is by <em>reading</em> that we learn how to tell those stories.</p> <p>Rarely, however, is there mention of reading children&#8217;s books when it comes to reading advice. </p> <p>That&#8217;s just <em>so</em> below us, right? I mean, we&#8217;re not out to write a children&#8217;s book, so why care?</p> <p>Well, if you read more children&#8217;s books, you&#8217;ll learn what is essential to telling a great story &#8230; even better than if you read <em>Wool</em> or <em>The Stand</em>. </p> <p>How can I say something so clearly heretical? Well &#8230;</p> <p>Think of Howey and King as masters of the long form. Bemelmans and Silverstein, on the other hand, are masters of the short form &#8212; the crystallized form perfect for <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/5-simple-ways-to-open-your-blog-post-with-a-bang/" target="_blank">opening a blog post</a> or <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/storytelling-marketing/" target="_blank">telling your own marketing story</a>.</p> <p>Here&#8217;s how that works &#8230;</p> <h3>How to read a story with purpose</h3> <p>This is easy if you have small children. </p> <p>The bedding ritual is chock full of reading opportunities. Let them pick out two or three of their favorite books, then start reading.</p> <p>As you read:</p> <ul> <li><strong>Look at the emotions.</strong> What core emotion is behind each story? Is it fear? Joy? Sadness? Anger?</li> <li><strong>Look at the characters.</strong> Who is the main character? Is he or she likeable? Who are the supporting characters? Who is the enemy of the main character?</li> <li><strong>Look at the conflict.</strong> What does the main character want? What obstacle is stopping the main character from getting what he wants? How does the story end?</li> <li><strong>Look at the language.</strong> The short words. The short sentences. The short paragraphs. The repetition and alliteration.</li> </ul> <p>Read and re-read each story (even after your children fall asleep) with these questions in mind.</p> <p>The beautiful thing about these books is you can read one, on average, in fewer than five minutes. That means in 30 minutes you can read six books (or the same book six times &#8212; one sure method for <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~thecopybot.com/2011/08/absorb-book-bloodstream/" target="_blank">absorbing a book</a>).</p> <p>But what if you don&#8217;t have small children? Easy. Take a trip to your local book store, hunt down the books for ages 4-7, and read two dozen books in two hours.</p> <p>Later, with your head dizzy with ideas, sit down and write your own story.</p> <h3>Why you should <em>not</em> be embarrassed</h3> <p>Listen. Don&#8217;t be ashamed of reading children&#8217;s books. </p> <p>And certainly don&#8217;t be ashamed of writing like a child. </p> <p>Simplicity is preferred over complication when it comes to writing (and God knows we bring a lot of adult baggage to the table).</p> <p>Besides, Pablo Picasso once said, &#8220;I&#8217;ve spent my whole life learning how to draw like a child.&#8221; </p> <p>If learning to draw like a child was a serious and significant pursuit for one of the most famous painters of the 20th century, then spending the rest of our lives learning how to write like a child shouldn&#8217;t be beneath us either.</p> <div class="author-box"><div><img alt='' src='http://0.gravatar.com/avatar/81c83444aed195de41d9e227bf13c2dc?s=100&amp;d=http%3A%2F%2F0.gravatar.com%2Favatar%2Fad516503a11cd5ca435acc9bb6523536%3Fs%3D100&amp;r=G' class='avatar avatar-100 photo' height='100' width='100' /> <span class="subheading">About the author</span><h3>Demian Farnworth</h3> <br><p>Demian Farnworth is Copyblogger Media's Chief Copywriter. Follow him on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://twitter.com/demianfarnworth" target="_blank">Twitter</a> or <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~https://plus.google.com/115630079405940076652/posts" target="_blank">Google+</a>.</p> </div></div><p></p> <p>The post <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com/read-childrens-books/">Could Reading Children&#8217;s Books Help You Become a Better Business Writer?</a> appeared first on <a href="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/t/0/0/copyblogger/~www.copyblogger.com">Copyblogger</a>.</p><Img align="left" border="0" height="1" width="1" style="border:0;float:left;margin:0;padding:0" hspace="0" src="http://feeds.copyblogger.com/~/i/51390078/0/copyblogger"> <h3 style="clear:left;padding-top:10px">Related Stories</h3><ul><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/premise-wordpress-off-the-market/">Premise for WordPress is Going Away: Grab a Copy and Save Before it&#x2019;s too Late</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/authority-better-writer/">7 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer</a></li><li><a href="http://www.copyblogger.com/2013-essay-deadline/">Here&#x2019;s Your Last Chance to Enter Copyblogger&#x2019;s Essay Contest (and Compete for Insanely Useful Prizes)</a></li></ul>