Down And Dirty Copy Critique And Tips

by | Jan 22, 2019



Some people simply don’t like to write copy. I get it — writing copy is not easy, and when you first start out, it can be downright difficult. Below is a copy of a sales email I received. To demonstrate the elements you should emphasize when writing your own copy, I’ve edited the original text and added some notes below.

Writing Copy – First Draft

writingHere is the original email I received.

Hi Friend,
There are times in a person’s life when they react differently to things. Times like Valentine’s Day, Easter, and Christmas apply to people in general, and they’re good times to get higher response rates by making offers that relate. But there are special personal times in someone’s life, and they too are good times to market to an individual. At Moving Targets, we’ve been specializing in two of those times for over 25 years … when people move and when they’re having a birthday. Most businesses miss those marketing opportunities because it’s not easy to make it happen. You need the data, you need the message, and you need to deliver it at just the right time.

In today’s sophisticated world, using personalized one-to-one marketing can bring you outstanding results. If you think your business can benefit by reaching the new people who move into your neighborhood or those having birthdays, you should look at what we can do for you.

Simply click here to check us out. If you like what you see, let me know, and I’ll help you get started.


This email is all wrong. Read through my edits below and take note of the changes I made. Afterward, I’ll offer a few tips you can use to make your own emails better.

Writing Copy – Second Draft

emailsHi Shaun,
Have you ever noticed there are times in a person’s life when they react differently than they normally would? For example, Valentine’s Day, Easter, or Christmas. If you tailor your marketing message during these times, it’s a good way to get a higher response rate, despite what others may have told you about marketing over holidays.

Many of us share the above holidays, but individually, we all have special occasions. What if you could target a message to a prospect customer’s specific special time?  
Two of the best special times to send a targeted message to someone are shortly after they’ve moved or on their birthday.

But that level of targeting is easier said than done. Most businesses miss these opportunities because they don’t have the data on when these events are happening or proven campaigns that get results, and frankly, it is costing them a small fortune.

Good news, though — having a targeted campaign that’s focused on special events doesn’t have to be hard. Here at Moving Targets, we have been providing proven, done-for-you new mover and birthday campaigns for businesses just like yours for 25 years.

I have some winning campaigns I can share with you about how this kind of one-to-one, event-based marketing can help you grow your business. Let’s find a time to chat, and I’ll go over them with you. Click on this link here to schedule a call for a short strategy session, and I’ll show you a simple, proven way for you to get more new customers for your business.

Talk to you soon,

P.S. During the strategy, you’ll walk away with no less than three killer ideas to grow your business, so don’t miss out on another set of new movers or birthdays — schedule a call today.

Points To Remember When Writing Copy:

copy writingHopefully you can see that my email is much more likely to get a better response based simply on the copy changes. Let me point out a few of the major alterations I made.

  1. Your copy should be talking to one person rather than a group of people.
  2. You need to provide good information that is useful to the reader and interesting.
  3. Make sure each sentence adds value to the message and goal of the piece you’re writing; some of the sentences in the original email served no purpose.
  4. Move the prospect through a journey so that the logical conclusion is to take your call to action (CTA).
  5. Get the prospect thinking about the future.
  6. When you create a problem (as the original writer did by referencing the difficulty associated with targeting new movers and birthday mailers), make sure you give the reader a clear solution to the problem. That solution may be your CTA or it may be more copy, but either way, you need to solve the problem for them.
  7. Make an offer. This is likely the largest mistake. The original offer was to go to the website, and that is just as good as having no offer.
  8. Assume the sale in the close. Writing “Talk to you soon” is at least a small assumption of a close.
  9. Have a postscript. Most people read it.

I’m sure there are other points my copywriting friends could share with us to improve both the original copy and mine. Still, I am 100 percent confident that my copy would get some appointments, and I’m 99 percent sure her copy didn’t get any.

Copy doesn’t have to be hard. Think of how you’d talk to a prospect if they were sitting in front of you, and write just like that.

I hope this critique and the above tips are helpful.

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