People Who Have This Skill Will End Up With Your Money

There’s ONE skill in all direct response businesses that probably —

#1 Has the highest impact on your bottom line,
#2 Can make or break your conversion rates,
#3 Is the most difficult to obtain because of the sheer amount of practice it requires, and
#4 Is the single most expensive skill in the business.

Someone I know once said “Every business owner in this business ought to learn copywriting. Otherwise the copywriter you hire will just end up with all the money in the end.”

It’s very true. “A” level copywriters routinely get paid $25,000 up front for a sales letter, $25,000 on delivery and then 4-5% royalties, indefinitely, as long as you keep using their precious intellectual property. Several top names make millions of dollars every year just from royalties.

And there’s a good reason for that. Good copy, with the right angles, tailored at the right market, applied to the right business model and based on proper strategy can really make or break a business.

Let me give you an example.

Imagine a scenario where you set up your opt-in page for your product or service. But since you can’t afford to hire a decent copywriter, you write “something” and put it on the page.

Maybe it’ll work – or maybe it won’t.

But even if it works… unless you were born to be a damn good copywriter, you’re leaving money on the table.

Let’s say you start sending traffic to it… and you get the following stats (to keep it simple) :

Cost per click: $1.50

Opt-in rate: 5%

Ad spend: $997.5

This means you bought 665 clicks with $997.5 and you got 33 leads out of it. That brings your cost per lead to $30.22.

Now let’s say you have a professional copywriter writing the headline and the page for your opt-in page. Let’s assume they actually know what they’re doing, but they are not touching the ads you’re running and they’re not coming up with new angles. This way the targeting, the cost per click, and the ad spend will all remain the same.

Your numbers now are as follows:

Cost per click: $1.50

Opt-in rate: 25%

Ad spend: $997.5

That means your 665 clicks for $997.5 now got you 166 leads. That’s about $6 a lead. Any business will be much easier to scale when you can drive leads at $6 a lead instead of $30!

Now of course there are other aspects to conversion rate optimization. There are colors, layout, sales angle, quality of whatever you’re promising, imagery, and a lot of other things. But copy is pretty much the single most important representation of all of that. And that is what a good copywriter will be able to give you.

What Kind Of Conversion Rates Should You Expect From A Copywriter?

This is a question I get asked very often, and unfortunately there’s no good answer.

Let me explain.

Let’s say you’re suffering from arthritis. You are in pain every single day, and that makes you part of what we call a very “hungry” market. You will be on the lookout for a solution. So, if I put a headline in front of you that says:

“Instant Home Remedy For Arthiritis Free” – Enter your email and download it now

My guess is — you’re giving me your email address about 75%-80% of the time.

On the other hand, if I’m going to put a landing page with the same content in front of 12 year olds on a gaming site – the conversion rate will probably drop to below 1%.

So there’s the combined effect of targeting & ad copy.

But then if I put it in front of a relevant audience and change the offer – and I say

“Instant Home Remedy For Arthritis – $47” – Enter your email and learn more now

My conversion rate will probably drop below 10% again. Or maybe even below 5%.

This is why sales angles, advertising creatives and offer creation are such an important part of the copywriting process.

Let’s see another example real quick:

If I sell furniture to a mass market audience, and I create an opt-in page that says:

“25% Discount Coupon For CoolFurniture – Enter Your Email And Get It While It’s There”

Then probably almost no matter how great the furniture looks and how relevant my ad is to my audience, and probably no matter how good the copywriter – the most I would personally expect from an opt-in page like this would be between 5% and 10%. Probably lower, if the targeting of the ad is not perfect.

Why? Because it’s not exactly a “hungry market”. It’s OK. It’s cool. But there is no real pain you’re taking away.

So now, to summarize, here are some of the most common mistakes people make when writing their own sales copy.

  1. Writing your own sales copy.

Yeah, honestly, I think you are probably making a mistake if you write your own sales copy unless you have experience and a track record of doing well with your own writing. If that’s not the case then I’m willing to bet you’re leaving money on the table.

Okay, maybe in the beginning it’s not economically viable to hire a professional to write your copy for you. Maybe you just want to test the idea. But the minute you start any conversions trickling in… I suggest you hire a pro. Otherwise you’re not only leaving money on the table, but you’re also risking not being able to make a profit and succeed in your venture at all. Let alone scale profitably.

Or even worse… you might throw away a good idea, just because it didn’t work because the copy you came up with didn’t resonate well with the market.

  1. Run on sentences.

If you have more than one comma in a sentence, that sentence should probably be two sentences. Simplify. Re-write. Edit. Make it short, concise and clean. It’ll read better.

  1. Using big words

Most people, even people with PhD-s use the simplest words for everything when theythink. And what you want to do is to enter the conversation in your prospect’s head. Which means, you can’t use “big words” otherwise your copy will be difficult to read. Follow the KISS principle. Dumb it down. The old copywriting adage says “pretend you’re explaining it to a child”!

  1. Using adjectives and thinking they have an impact

When I coach future copywriters I always tell them: if you have to stuff your copy full of adjectives, you haven’t done your research.

Why? Because what sells is the backbone of the copy, not the language. It’s the way you present the facts, and the way you use your sales angles… And of course the emotional journey you take your prospect through.

  1. Large blocks of text

Unless you need to fit it into a specific amount of space, it’s usually a good idea to use as much white space as you can in order to increase the impact of your sentences.

If your copy looks like a large block of text without it being spaced out properly, reading it will feel like “work”.

We don’t want that.

Which is why sometimes it’s a good idea to have single sentence paragraphs!

How To Master Copywriting

If you want to know what’s involved in writing good copy, I invite you to reconsider.

Learning this skill is grueling work. It takes ridiculous amounts of practice. It takes years for you to get good at it. And some people are simply never going to make it. Seriously, you’re probably better off paying a professional.

But if you’re really really obsessed about becoming a copywriter… Here’s’s Professional Copywriter Mentoring Program.

Don’t say I didn’t warn you!


As an established expert in many genres of online direct response marketing, Ben has worked as a strategic consultant, copy chief, PPC campaign manager and Product Launch Manager for some high profile direct response clients in 21 different countries.

Having worked on campaigns with New York Times bestselling author Robert G. Allen, success expert Brian Tracy, and Chicken Soup of the Soul creator Jack Canfield, Ben personally wrote Standard Operating Procedures on campaign management and media buying based on $500 million worth of advertising spend.

He became a marketer after managing a private intelligence firm for over a decade and being Director of Security at LogMeIn, Inc. in his previous career. Ben’s strengths are lead generation, PPC consulting, marketing audits, sales funnels, strategic planning, product launch management and deal-making.