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Copywriting Hookfinder

Published by: David Garfinkel on 01-25-2021

I don’t know how controversial what we say on Copywriters Podcast is, because I don’t have much data or gut feel on the subject, one way or the other.

But I think I can say with great certainty something that nearly everyone would agree on. And that is this:

The single hardest part of writing copy is getting started. The terror of the blank page.

Where do you start, anyway?

I mean, after you’ve done all your customer research, your product research… after you’ve written all your bullets… after you’ve brainstormed and schemed and planned… you’ve got to finally grab the beast by its lapels and get started.

And you know what’s really hard about getting started?

Finding your hook.

Now, I can’t do that for you here today. But what I can do is offer some guidance and a few trampolines to get you going. I’ll give you three specific ways to create a hook… and tell you about the one way too many people default to, way too often, that really doesn’t work.

So here’s the deal. Whatever you say in the beginning of your copy has a hugely disproportionate impact. It’s not just copy, really. It’s any communication. What you say or write at the start sets the tone, frames the conversation, prepares your reader or your listener for what’s next.

People have these unspoken, often even unheard, questions in their mind. Not only “What’s this about?” but “Does this have anything to do with me?” and “Can I trust the person who’s saying this to me?” Whatever answers to those questions pop up will determine the frame of mind in which your prospect will hear or read what comes next.

Again, this usually happens below the threshold of conscious thought.

And ultimately, we’re talking about the level and quality of their engagement. Is it open, curious, receptive? Or is it skeptical, cautious, even bordering on hostile?

Your hook -- your headline and the words that come right after your headline -- will determine that. Because your hook is what starts everything off. When you start right, you’ve got a shot. Start wrong, and you’ve pretty much blown it.

We’ll start with the one thing a lot of people do that they shouldn’t, because it kills their chances. And then we’ll go onto three other things that give you a much better shot.

Keywords: writing hooks

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