Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Copy Writing Made Quick and Simple with the Bare Essence Copywriting Part 2

June 18, 2017 by  

Note:  This is a transcript from a video of Robert showing how he writes a sales letter from scratch in approximately one hour.  The video ran just over 60 minutes, and the transcript is relatively short and maybe not all that readable, because the video is mainly Robert thinking, typing, and explaining as he goes along.  You might get more out of this seminar by watching than by reading.  If you prefer to read, though, here goes …


Hey guys, this is Robert Plank from FastFoodCopywriting.com, and today we’re going to try using the Bare Essence Copywriting technique.  That’s where we’ve got 8 questions, and all you’ve got to do to write a sales letter — ooh, big scary sales letter — all you’ve got to do is answer these 8 questions, and we’ll have all the info we need to sell something.  And all that we will need to do is just edit that around to make it more attractive, but we’ll basically have it.


So I’ve got this product that, as of this video recording I’ve just finished, called “WordPress Crusher”, to get your WordPress blogs to do anything you want them to do.


It’s basically a programming book — PHP book — about how to make different kinds of plug-ins, and we do things like how to make WordPress widgets for the sidebar, how to write plug-ins that edit custom fields like bring in RSS feeds, import articles, embed videos, bribe visitors to leave comments, post to Twitter, take our posts and reward our readers for commenting by showing more posts, show custom post fields, and so on.


So looks like we have 7 chapters — 7 templates for plug-ins, where people can just fill in the blank, which is very unique because I have never seen a template for a WordPress plug-in before.  And we’ve got 8 actual plug-ins.


And then we’re going to have the videos, but I kind of prefer to write the rough draft of the sales letter first before working on the product, but I just had to get this report part of it done.  So I’m going to bang out the sales letter tonight and then maybe over the weekend or just tomorrow or something, whenever I have a large block of time I’m going to bang out these videos of 20 minutes or so each.


So that’s the plan.  I’m going to write the sales letter now in one sitting.  Usually in the past I’ve preferred to write my sales letters in Dreamweaver because you can add in your H1, H2 tags, and if you’re a copywriter it makes it very easy to structure your page; but I’m on a somewhat new computer right now so Microsoft Word will have to do.


So I’m going to open up a new Word document.  Let’s make it a blank document here.  I’m going to save it.  Let’s call it WordPress Crusher sales letter.  And now we’re going to start with the first question; so I’m going to bust out my timer program.  Yeah, you thought I was kidding about the timer when I explained the bare essence copywriting formula, but I’m not.  Don’t ask me why it’s hot pink.  It came that way, I swear.  And I’m going to set it just to 10 minutes, and the thing I’m going to answer about my WordPress Crusher product is “What do you want me, the reader, to do?”


Oh yeah, really quick before I start.  Somebody asked me about sales letters that I wrote using this technique so let me show you, too.  It was two out of these three.  I think it was this one, this sales letter for a membership report.  See how I just said — I’ve got $7 action report.  Here are the benefits.  But what happens is these are more action-oriented sales letters.  You can either try to tackle this problem now, make mistakes, or go through this.  Here’s what’s in the report.  And I’ve expanded on some of the benefits, but this is pretty much it.  You don’t need a bunch of fancy stuff.  This will do you.


What do you want me as the reader to do?  And if you’re sitting here like “I don’t know what to say,” well guess what?  You got 10 minutes so let’s get cracking.


What do you want me as the reader to do?  “After getting your hands on these WordPress plug-in templates, you’ll be able to whip up a sidebar widget…”  I just wrote this whole book and I forgot what’s in it.  “Custom database handling post, a plug-in that displays as a sidebar widget, rewrites existing posts, rewrites existing entries, responds to new blog posts and comments, and more.


Real world examples.  Working WordPress plug-ins allow you to copy your WordPress post to other locations.”  Oh, no no no.  See, I’m losing the flow here.  “Apply these plug-ins as is,” or “Apply these plug-ins as is.  These are real world working WordPress plug-ins that allow you to do everything from copying your WordPress posts to Twitter, reward readers for leaving comments, automatically import articles and RSS feeds, and more.”


So I’m trying to make it seem like they’ve already got the product and here’s how they’re going to use it.  “All you have to do is decide what you want your WordPress plug-in to do.  Then flip to that chapter.  I’ll give you a working plug-in that you can install on your blog without any editing.  You can also change the plug-in around to do whatever you want or use the plug-in template to make the new plug-in entirely your own.  If you’re the reading type you can check out the super detailed documentation in pdf form.  If you’re the watching type, for the kind who likes to watch, you can also kick back with some popcorn and view my video instructions on how to install or customize the script.”


I wrote all that just because I was under a time limit.  I should have set my time limit to 5 minutes because I wrote a lot of stuff.  And so the thing is that you want to set this timer so that your brain just writes constantly; and then as soon as the timer’s off, you stop, you get up for a minute or two to get some water and use the bathroom, and that trains your brain to respond to this timer thing.


So we’ve got about half a page here.  I want about two thirds of a page, but I guess this will do for now.  “Your days of writing WordPress plug-ins from scratch, overpaying freelancers to write plug-ins for you, and digging through countless pages of useless documentation are over starting right now.”  Okay, that’s all I need from the “What do I want you as the reader to do.”  I want you to get your hands on these plug-in templates and whip up a plug-in or apply as is, flip through the chapter, read or watch the video or…that’s it.  And then once I record the videos, I’ll probably update this with the actual running time of the videos, but this is a good start.  So I’ll just make this into a — no headings on this?  Whatever.  I wanted to make this into a — heading 1:  What do you want me the reader to do?


And then so the next question is going to be “What do I as the reader want and desire?”  So you might have to adjust this timer.  Looks like last time we used 6 minutes so let’s try that again — 6 minutes, and maybe this being on the time crunch will get us to talk more and be more creative.


So what do I as the reader want and desire?  Go.  “I banged my head against the wall time and time again trying to get this or that WordPress plug-in to work in the past.  So I understand you might be frustrated if you had a really cool idea for a plug-in for a script to add to your WordPress blogs but could never get it just right.  Maybe you asked around for help on forums.  Maybe you paid for help.  Or maybe you spent several hours or days hunting around the search engines trying to find a workaround for your problem only to find that you are all alone in the world.  Because programming can get frustrating and you can run into dead ends, I understand that you want a simple shortcut to writing WordPress plug-ins.  You want to be able to have an idea, look and see how someone else made a plug-in that did something similar, and edit it to your needs.  The problem is that many of these plug-ins were not meant to be understood.  Once you do that, you can make your blog truly unique or you can turn around and sell your plug-in for a profit.  Any time somebody wants their blog to do that specific thing, that unique thing, your blog does, they have to pay you a fee to get access to that WordPress plug-in.  Perhaps you are a freelance programmer who wants to get paid what you’re worth; so you want to write in a more specialized field like the WordPress plug-in niche instead of the PHP niche.  Or maybe you are just a webmaster who wants to give the plug-in away for free in exchange for a link back, which will get you some nice traffic.  No matter what you are,” — I want to get across the point that they don’t want to think about writing the plug-in.  “You want to spend your time marketing and thinking about your plug-in instead of doing the grunt work that most other people have to go through.  Not only does this manual show you how to write your own plug-ins, it gives you fill-in-the-blank templates; so even if you haven’t started, the plug-in is already 50 percent done or more.”


Okay.  30 seconds to spare.  So I’ve just answered “What does the reader want and desire?”  So they don’t want the frustration, and they don’t want the pain of doing all this work.  They want it done for them so they can think about other things.  They don’t want to spend their time making the plug-in; they want to spend their time marketing it.


All right.  Question No. 3 is where we’re going to list benefits.  I’m not sure if I want to give myself 7 minutes or 10 minutes.  Let’s always go on the low side.  Let’s give us 7 minutes, and if we need more time maybe we’ll figure it out then.  Question 3 will be “What will I get once I order from you, and how will it benefit me?”  List as many benefits as you can.  And I just don’t know what it is, but I’ve tried doing this without retyping the questions, and it just hasn’t worked.  Not as well as you see in this video.  So retype the questions — very important.  So 7 minutes…let’s go.


“As soon as you invest in the WordPress Crusher tutorial package, you will immediately get access to download 7 videos totalling X minutes of training, 7 plug-in templates that you can use to fill-in-the-blank your way to WordPress plug-in heaven success, and 8 working WordPress plug-ins that you can use right out of the box.  You’ll also get an 82-page instruction booklet complete with full unencrypted source code showing you exactly how the plug-in was made and what was going through my head as I made it.”


Answering these questions just makes the answers more personal, makes me say things like “I” and “you.”  Okay, time to list benefits.  This is going to be tough to do in 5 minutes, but let’s do it.  “Make basic WordPress plug-ins.”  Let’s make a bullet, I guess.  “Create your first WordPress plug-in in 60 seconds or less just by answering a few simple questions and uploading a single PHP file to your WordPress folder.  Import ten, a hundred, or even a thousand articles into your WordPress blog with one click by your text articles and schedule and space them out as far into the future as you like.  Make WordPress plug-ins that appear on the sidebar, known as widgets.  Now you can display in a formation on your blog and drag it around so it goes right where you want it to.”


So now we’re going to talk about the expanded widget.  “Make your widget as simple or as customizable as you want it to be for your users.”  And we’re going to rewrite some of these later on, I guess.  This is just the rough draft of the sales letter.  So the Twitter button was the real world example.  “Add your Twitter account information to your WordPress sidebar in just a couple of seconds using this helpful widget plug-in, custom fields, and the RSS automator.  Discover how you can save and load any information about your plug-in to the WordPress database.”  Yeah, this bullet’s definitely going to need to have the “so what?” technique applied to it.  “As simple as in just one line of code.”  And then the RSS automator.  “Use a secret plug-in to set up a schedule to automatically import as many RSS feeds as you want, as often or as rarely as you want.  Use either full article RSS feeds or simply news feeds to keep your blog content as updated and fresh as possible without you having to lift a finger.”


Let’s take 3 more minutes even though it’s still not going to be enough time.  We want to be in a rush here.  “Custom fields, short code.  How to get your plug-ins to respond to short code so you can add repetitious items on to your blog post with ease.”  And then the plug-in here was a video embed plug-in.  “Embed Camtasia or YouTube videos as easily as you can type a URL.  Forget about broken…”  Because when you paste in code, code as is, to WordPress blogs, they usually break it.   “The days of WordPress breaking your special video codes are over.”


Custom database table and the ethical comment bribe machine.  “Get your WordPress plug-in to edit anything in the database for you.  This means you can distribute plug-ins that store lots and lots of information without the usual set up customer support headache program installations.  Now your users can install databases, install your scripts, with one click.”  So this was going to be the bribe machine.  “Ethically bribe your visitors to leave comments on your blog every single day.  This is the same technique I’ve used on my blog for over a year to make sure that none of the entries have less than ten comments, and one entry has nearly 100 comments.  How many comments does your blog have?  Now I’ve found a way to automate it.”  No, this was different.


Okay, now we have the post handling template.  “How to get your WordPress plug-ins to

e-mail visitors, e-mail you, or perform any action the instant you make a new blog post.”  We need a few more minutes here.  And then the actual plug-in for that was the Twitter connector.  “Abolish social media sites that suck up time.  Now you can instantly repost all your blog entries to the Twitter social network without having to log in ever again.”  And then the post meta values.  This is hard to explain.  This is where we have custom values that only apply to specific posts.  “Save information specific to blog posts.  Allow visitors to limit the reach of your plug-ins to only affect specific posts they choose.”  Close enough.  And then the script for that was the post statistics.  “Use the number of post comments.  Use the amount of videos, posts, and comments to impress your visitors and get them to stay longer on your site.”


Okay.  So those are the — that’s what they get, which was first what they get once they order.  And then we’ve got 14 bullet points, which I just chose each of the templates and then chose the plug-ins.  So I’ll be able to sift through these.  And I think just for the rough draft I’ll just probably take maybe every third or fourth bullet point and make it into a sub-headline and be done with it for now.  But then in the second chapter I’ll probably choose a couple of these and just delete them, but I don’t think I’ll have to write anything else on that.  So that was question 3, “What will I get once I order from you, and how will it benefit me?”


Let’s jump right into question No. 4.  Stop the bullets here.  “What would my top objections be as the reader?”  Remember, this is the reader asking this stuff.  What would the reader’s top objection be?  “And how would you diffuse them for me?”  So the thing I’m thinking about is maybe they think it’s too technical or that’s there’s nothing they can use out of the box, which is both false.  So I think that’s what I’m going to start with, and if anything else comes to me, then it’ll come to me, but 7 minutes is not a long time.


“As a script coder myself I have dealt” — see, I’m getting too much into myself.  “These plug-ins are very easy to use.  In most cases you can simply upload the file, activate the plug-in in your WordPress dashboard, and use it as is.  Sometimes you have to click over to the settings area, but other than that you do not have to edit any code if you don’t want to.  If you have technophobic you can simply use these plug-ins as is to get more blog traffic, more commenters, more subscribers, and more money.  But if you are a programmer or someone who dabbles in programming, this is a unique opportunity to tweak the plug-ins or crank out some of your own plug-ins.”


I’m screwing up my writing.  “Crank out your own plug-ins.  To my knowledge, no one has ever offered a deal like this.  Not just the plug-ins themselves but the templates used to make the plug-ins, videos explaining the plug-ins, and detailed documentation going over every step of the plug-in with a fine-toothed comb.”


Okay, so ease of use and will they work.  “Just one of these plug-ins — any of these plug-ins on their own would be worth $37 or $67, but because I produce so many scripts I would rather bundle them into one complete package so that you can get the script or two that you want now” — I want to say you get the script that you want now and then a bunch of other scripts that you would want tomorrow, but I don’t want them to think that they’re buying some extra stuff that they don’t need.  “You can get the scripts that you want now along with the scripts you need now.  Think of this as my 14-in-1 deal.  If you would rather purchase these plug-ins, a bunch of plug-ins, separately or try to duplicate them on your own, be my guest.  But we both know that your time is much better spent with your friends and family.  It’s much more valuable than the cost for a simple dinner for two.”


So I guess that’d be the objections.  You’ve got the price, the time, does it work, and ease of use.  So that’s all I need for the top objections.  So that is question No. 4 done.  I hope this last sentence made sense.  I want to say that the cost of the package is cheaper than the dinner for two.  “Or have a programmer make them, be my guest.  We both know that they aren’t going to be as well-documented as these plug-ins; so if you ever need to fix a problem or add a feature in the future, you will be out of luck.  This package costs less than a simple dinner for two.”  It’s actually 15 in 1.  We have 7 templates and 8 plug-ins.  So let’s get outrageous and say I charged a hundred bucks for this.  “Even if I charged $100 for this solution, you still would pay less than $7 per plug-in, and that’s not even counting the videos or the pdf instructions.”  Okay, that’s much better.


So question No. 4 is “What would my top objections” — I need to start typing this and not saying them.  “What would my top objections as the reader be” — no, I just answered that one.  I’m so tired.  “What is your guarantee, and what bonuses do you provide to make this offer a no-brainer?”  I was thinking about adding bonuses.  I was going to do one extra video per month and I was going to space it out over the course of the year, but didn’t finish those.  So for now, no bonuses; just the guarantee.  “What is your guarantee to make this offer a no-brainer?”  Let’s just say that.  This doesn’t need to be complicated.  It doesn’t need to have a lot of legal verbiage, so let’s just say 7 minutes — even 5 minutes.  Okay, 5 minutes and let’s start.  I wasn’t ready to start, but okay.


“What is your guarantee to make this offer a no-brainer?  Just in case these plug-ins do not work on your blog or you’re unhappy with them or they just don’t perform as well as you wanted them to, you can always contact me within 30 days for a full, no questions asked, 100 percent money back, love it or shove it guarantee.  30 days isn’t enough for you?  Fine.  Let’s make it 60 days.  The instant after you click the button below to get access to your plug-ins, you have a full two months — that’s about 8 weeks — to get your money back.”  I don’t want to say money back twice.  “…or you simply aren’t thrilled with the increase in traffic, comments, and sales, you can always contact me.”


That’s all.  I guess that’s all I need.  I don’t need a detailed guarantee, and I guess if I had bonuses I would be typing them out more.  Maybe I’ll try to see if I can buy up some resale rights in the next couple of days, but I don’t think I’ll have time to make videos — maybe one or two.  In a perfect world I would have a handful of them, list them all and say, “After this month you’ll get this bonus video.  And after that month you’ll get this bonus video,” to get people to stay on as long as possible.  But this is good enough, I guess.  What is your guarantee to make this offer a no-brainer?  You need to be thrilled, 30 days, 100 percent money back.  Let’s make it 60 days.  I’m not going to get any more creative than that.


And the sixth question:  “What steps do I take to order?”  This is another easy one — won’t take us the full 5 minutes.  Just to make things fun let’s make it 3 minutes.  “To download and activate your one-time membership to WordPress Crusher right now, click the purchase order button below.  You’ll be taken to a very simple and secure page where you can enter your payment details.  After you do, you’ll be taken back to this site to a secret, exclusive download area, where you can download the videos, plug-ins, and e-book all in one convenient file.  Delivery is instant and automatic so you can get access to WordPress Crusher even if it’s 2 in the morning.”  Done.  So question 6 was “What steps do I take to order?”  Now for questions 7 and 8.


Question 7 is “Why should I order right now instead of later?”  And question 8 is “What have other people said about this product?”  So question 8 is the testimonials, but I don’t have any right now so question 7’s going to be the last question.


So question 7:  “Why should I order right now instead of later?”  Let me get my mouse over here.  “Why should I order right this second instead of later?”  Let’s just make this a 4 minute thing.  “I plan on increasing the price of WordPress Crusher very soon depending — the price you see now is an introductory price to see how many people are interested in a WordPress plug-in creation, especially from a plug-in template.”  I hate threatening to increase the price.  I want to say it will increase by this date.  “For that reason you should get in at this low price now before I increase the price.  Remember, WordPress Crusher comes with 990 days of free upgrades.  This means that if I add bonus materials to the package later and increase the price, you can get the bonuses for free if you are smart enough to buy in early.”  Done.  Sales letter done.


So all I have to do is remove the questions.  The flow isn’t great, and it needs some headlines, but I have got a rough draft.  So isn’t it a lot better that I have this 1600 words of stuff as opposed to going to a copywriter who probably hadn’t even started yet?


So like I said, I still need some headlines, but I’m going to wait until I have imported this into an HTML page.  This is usually why I write in Dreamweaver directly so I can just make the changes as I go along.  I’m probably going to remove about half of these bullet points or sprinkle them around.


And here’s a technique I learned from Jason Fladlien, who taught me this bare essence technique, is you have all these bullet points and what you do is you remove the weaker ones that don’t really belong in the sales copy and you use them as article titles later.  Even if all you did was you removed half of these bullet points and kept the rest, then you have 7 or 8 titles that you can hand off to an article writer to give you a few follow up e-mails or presale e-mails or stuff to add into a bonus report.


So before I go, why not generate a couple of headlines for later.  So I’m going to open up my browser and use the Digg headline trick.  This sometimes works, sometimes doesn’t; so bear with me.  We always get something.  We’re going to open up a digg.com and search for WordPress.  So we’ve got WordPress, and now we’re going to change this to title only, all stories, and sort by most Diggs.  Click search and let’s see what we’ve got.  Stuff about WordPress themes, how to create WordPress themes from scratch.  Okay, I like the sound of that.


So let’s say “How to create WordPress plug-ins in just a few minutes while your competition is still struggling to make them from scratch.”  These are all nerds who are like “21 mind blowing WordPress themes.”  “Why my site is so much faster than yours.”  I’m just going to make this an H1 so I know later on.  “Why my WordPress blogs get more comments, visitors, and sales than yours.”  Maybe that’s one of the bullets — yeah, that could be one of the headlines for the bullet points.


So let’s say — here’s how to do sidebar stuff — perfect spot.  “Why my WordPress blogs get more repeat comments, repeat visitors, and sales than yours.  And I’ve never written a single post on most of them.”


30+ most wanted, awesome WordPress themes — yeah, there’s nothing really that jumps out at me.  Useful stuff — let’s get down to 200 Diggs.  Wow, these are all nerds.  WordPress lessons — that’s exciting.


RSS-based WordPress — ooh, I like the sound of that.  RSS-based autoblogging.  Improve your site visits.  No one cares about WordPress security.  That’s prevention.  …


Unique ways to use WordPress.  “Unique ways to use WordPress to get your visitors to do anything you want that 95 percent of marketers overlook.”


Let’s just get one down at the bottom.  I want to say something like “The plug-ins you need the most are the ones that you make yourself.”  No no.  …


“How to become a WordPress expert in a few hours” — perfect.  “How to become an expert in WordPress plug-in creation in a few short hours.”  That still might be out of place, but I don’t care for now.


So we’ve got a couple of headlines.  We’ve got bullet points.  And see the bullets — once I have headlines in front of them, they don’t look that bad.  So in about an hour, we’ve got 1700 words, 42 paragraphs, and about a three, 3 1/2, 4-page sales letter right here.  Think about how much it would cost to get your copywriter to write a 4-page sales letter.  500 bucks?  A thousand bucks?  Even if you only charged 200 bucks for this kind of work, it just took you an hour.  So the time that this is worth is 200 bucks an hour.


So I hope this gave you a good idea of what’s possible just by entering a few questions and having a countdown timer, and having the Camtasia babysitter running while this is all going on.


Yeah, there’s a reason why I recorded this, and there’s a reason why you should record it, too, because it helps so much if someone is looking over your shoulder.  I was just working on this, and I kept thinking, “You know what?  I want to go to bed.”  I was thinking, “I want to watch some Battlestar Galactica, but the Camtasia’s open.  And I don’t want to leave it paused and come back to it and find it gone.”  So I wanted to have this whole thing documented, and I couldn’t really put the video aside so I had to finish.  And you know what?  It wasn’t that much work.  It was an hour including me talking to you.  And if I was totally focused and in the zone and almost in a trance, I could probably do this in half an hour.  I’ve done sales letters like these in 10 minutes.


So before I leave you, here are the 8 questions that we answered in this sales letter:  What do you want me as the reader to do?  Like “buy this e-book,” “buy this video course.”  What do I as the reader want and desire?  What will I get once I order from you and how will it benefit me?  What are my top objections?  What do you anticipate they be, rather.  And how would you diffuse them?  What’s your guarantee and what bonuses do you provide to make this offer a no-brainer?  What steps do I take to order?  Why should I order now instead of later?  And what have other people said about this product?


That was Robert Plank from FastFoodCopywriting.com, and that was the Bare Essence Copywriting technique.


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