In his day, Gary Halbert was like the OG Internet Info Marketer.
His advertising was superb. The goods in his advertisements? Not too many.
One incident (as they normally do) leads to something and he ends up in prison. Though, jail is a perfect productivity hack (no free Wi-Fi).
While there, through writing to his son, Gary wanted to make the best of his imprisonment. Passing on his fatherly wisdom and all that, you know.
And hence, it came to be The Boron Letters. Gary Halbert headlines completely changed the mindset of copy.
It’s not necessarily a machine. It is fun, though. Vastly fascinating lessons that vary from life to copywriting to industry.
See, with this copywriting stuff, here’s the trick. Don’t watch what they say, kids. Look at what they’re doing: storytelling. The form of the sentence (or lack thereof). The tone for the speech.
Anything within The Boron Letters is there. When reading it, you’ll get overwhelmed. You will ask what the heck you’re spending your time doing. But you’ll get to the positive things then. And all of this would be worth it.
Alongside Gary’s other, equally personal letters of direct-response copywriting, the Boron Letters still appear. One example is here. As part of a high-dollar subscription thing, they were originally bundled (you know, the info-marketing guru gotta hype something).
Perhaps Gary Halbert is the G.O.A.T of copywriting and from 2001 Gary Halbert headlines some of the things you can learn
In multiple niches, he’s seen more multi-million dollar winning projects than any other copywriter, alive or deceased. And one of the best books ever published on the subject is his copywriting novel, The Boron Letters.
1. Always start with your mindset completely
Perhaps Gary Halbert’s greatest lesson is that excellent writing always begins with the right attitude.
In the Boron Letters, he sends his son Bond the following advice:
“Everyone wants to climb the mountain, but the big difference between those who are at the top and those who are still at the bottom is simply a matter of showing up for another shot tomorrow.”
And I know that’s right. If we don’t correct the basics, our writing can not be strengthened by any variety of strategies.
2. Find A Hungry Crowd
You still have to first find a niche… and then settle on a commodity! ”
As Halbert points out, they aim to generate excitement for a commodity where often people get lost. They write amazing copies and masterfully sell their items, but they can’t persuade readers yet. There isn’t much market for what they offer.
Halbert proposes, instead, that we find a prosperous market and then find a commodity to satisfy the new demand. The copywriting process gets even simpler once we already realize that individuals are desperate for our solution.
Gary tells in the book an interesting game he would play in workshops, where he would ask people what selling point they would prefer if they were running a burger stand. Some claim beef is superior. Others say buns with sesame. A few mention a location. And, typically, someone asks for the lowest price.
What’s Gary asking for? A hungry crowd.
3. Know the customers
The way to find out what people want to purchase is clearly to see what they are doing! ”
Humans are nuanced beings. Much of the time, two opposite things are what we think and what we do.
And it’s our job as advertisers to know what consumers want to shop. We research the data and learn about our clients’ shopping preferences.
The best way to find a hungry consumer is to consider our consumers’ real behavioral patterns. What do they truly buy?
It’s a perfect reminder that we’re not going to be mobile in the online world—first, we need to be data-first. That’s the magic.
If our copy is based on real details, we know that consumers are more likely to be involved in what we have to suggest. And more likely, thus, to buy something.
4. Get Recognition
Gary Halbert said there were two stacks, the A box, and the B pile, in the days of direct mail.
We weed out the relevant messages from the spam while we view our mail.
It’s important that we get on the A pile, whether it’s the business emails, social posts, or paid ads.
Two ways to do this are available:
1. A strong difference between the value proposition and the reader’s relevance
We are much more likely to pay attention to material that sets the audience and meaning upfront specifically. No tricks whatsoever or B.S.
For starters, we’re way more likely than a generic email blast to read a specifically delivered and carefully thought email.
So ask yourself, is that going to tempt my reader to place my copy in the A stack?
Side note: I wrote in a previous article on this theory, in which I broke down the most effective sales letter from Gary Halbert.
2. Let your writing stick out when you write
We are overwhelmed with promotional deals and discounts in loads of sectors. We’re desensitized since
Try trying something a little different to draw the right kind of publicity if that’s the case with your business.
Gary Halbert, for instance, would sometimes tie presents to his messages, including old coins or bags of soil. To bring the letter into the A bin, these things will be enough to arouse interest in readers.
It’s also just a case of dreaming about what a new way of interacting with our audience is. Is there anything else we can do to isolate the majority of the pack from our writing?
5. Pursue the A.I.D.A.
As Gary Halbert discusses his writing methods, he never distracts from the formula of the A.I.D.A. It forms the base of almost every top-performing sales letter ever written, as a tried and tested structure.
What it stands for is this:
- Attention: An attention-grabbing headline that gives readers a pledge.
- Interest: A hook that builds on the promise of the headline, providing clarification.
- Desire: Product advantages that entice the reader to shop.
- Action: An enticing bid that persuades them to shop now.
If you adhere to this formula and properly execute it, your copy can’t go too wrong.
6. Write a convincing bid
“Your offer… is by far the most important element of the sales message in its entirety.”
The fact is that if your bid does not inspire readers to take action, it will fail.
It could be time to enhance your sales offer if your readers have been through all of your sales copy and still determined that it’s not worth their time.
You did all the heavy-lifting already and wrote a persuasive page that stimulated their attention. Now it’s just about finding out what’s going to drive them to take the extra step and make a buy.
Gary Halbert used to invest much of his time making enticing deals for copywriting. It is crucial to get it right, whether it is a solid promise, an enticing incentive, or an unbelievable discount.
Giving a bold bid can be daunting, but it’s still necessary to balance it against the positives of improved revenue and customer loyalty. It’s an invaluable advantage when you see the sales bid from this angle.
7. Continue to Maximize
It’s quick to get a misconceived notion of their success when we picture copywriters like Gary Halbert.
They may seem to be coming across million-dollar inventions, but that’s not even close to reality.
Obsessive research is the secret behind all the best sales letters. Until expanding its circulation, they will submit a sales letter to a test audience (low risk) and analyze its output.
It’s a perfect lesson that overnight, smart ideas aren’t made. They arise infrequently and are detected only through extensive research. The advantage of this is that you don’t have to blow huge gambling budgets on the wrong plan, trusting in what works.
Tips from Garry Halbert Headlines PDF
I came across Gary’s book (a list of his newsletters) while doing some much-needed housekeeping, and sat down to re-read it. Released in 1990, Gary concentrated on tips for direct mail copywriting until the Internet took the world by storm. As I re-read the novel, I found myself thinking that “these points in today’s online marketplace are still essential.”
Yeah, there are copywriting tips that stand the test of time, whether that was a quarter of a century ago or now. “Here are five timeless tips from “The Gary Halbert Letter” along with an update/outlook on each.
|“The main and most important thing in all of Direct Mail Land is to get the envelope delivered and opened” is Gary’s copywriting tip (9/1/1986).|
|Update: While an envelope that can be thrown away is not part of the Internet, it doesn’t take long for a prospect to click away from the site. So make sure your web page draws interest and offers a justification for your prospect to continue reading.|
|“Copywriting tip from Gary (9/1/1986): “It’s a matter of timing. It is like the seduction to sell.|
|Whether you want a woman to go to bed with you, when you ask her, it is largely a matter of whether or not she says ‘yes’. As soon as you’ve been introduced, if you question her immediately, she’ll most likely think you’re a jerk and tell you to get lost. If you wait a while, however, wait before she gets to know you a little …. Your odds of receiving a “yes” response are much, much higher than that.|
|Update: You’ve already read a lot about the marketing of social media. It is not about hitting the ground running on a sales pitch, whether you’re writing on Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter. It’s about building relationships, supplying data, and first getting the fans to know, like, and trust you.|
|Copywriting tip for Gary (9/1/1988): “Promotion credentials!” The #2 explanation they’re not buying from you is that they’re not sure that you truly are.|
|Update: While Gary supports the advantages of having celebrities in your promotions, I think you should develop prestige in other ways, particularly because the expense of a celebrity endorsement will not be covered by your budget.|
|I think you’ve used the expression “social evidence?” “Getting your happy customers’ endorsements and testimonials lets you boost your reputation. Get prospects, like and trust you, to know. Persuade them that you are for real. Not sure how to go about the raving fans having testimonials? I’m posting my|
|“Copywriting tip from Gary (7/3/1987): “Selling is not shouting. The sale isn’t a gimmick.|
|Update: It’s not about hype and trying to lure things they don’t even like or need into the prospects. It is about being honest, giving advantages to your prospects that inspire them to respond, not out of trickery, but out of a genuine desire to access your product or service. You’re on the way to turning a potential into a satisfied, committed supporter if you prove you appreciate their problems and have a response.|
|“Copywriting tip from Gary (12/1/1986): “PASSION. All over the page, let the joy and enthusiasm spill out. And don’t hold back.|
|Update: There is not much of an update. Today, what was true in 1986 remains true. Let the prospects know what they have in it. Provide them with the advantages of how one of two desires rewards them with the good or service: 1) obtaining something they don’t have or 2) preventing missing something they do.|
|Gary Halbert got to share and share more wonderful “pearls of wisdom” until 2007 when he passed away. Have you integrated into your campaign efforts some of his timeless tips? If so, because I’d love to hear from you, please feel free to express your views in the comments section below. And a million thanks,|
Some of the famous Gary Halbert headlines used To sum Up the article
Great Gary Halbert, the “Prince of Print” — one of the most original direct-response minds ever — and found these cliches and idioms used over and over:
- “Easy as pie”
- “The real McCoy”
- “Open and shut case”
- “Every Tom, Dick, and Harry”
- “A picture is worth a thousand words”
- “As common as sawdust around a sawmill.”
- “Kill the goose that laid the golden eggs.”
- “Work your fingers to the bone.”
- “Blood is thicker than water.”
- “Make a clean breast of it.”
- “Speak of the devil.”
- “Sacred cow.”
- “Needed as a pen.”
- “Naked as a jaybird.”
- “Let sleeping dogs lie.”
- “Out of sight, out of mind.”
- “Red carpet treatment.”
- “In the heat of battle.”
- “Get up and go.”
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