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What Your Prospects Most Want To Know, Part 2

Published by: David Garfinkel on 09-13-2021

We’re back with our Old Masters Series, and this is part 2 of a four-part series -- What Your Prospects Most Want To Know. I would add, what is it that they want to know right away, and whether or not your tell them might decide whether or not they keep on reading?

The answer is the same as last time:

What will your product, or service, do for me?

But this time, we’re going into entirely new territory than we did last time.

First let me say that this show is the Old Masters Series because it comes from a very special book: “How to Write a Good Advertisement,” by Victor Schwab.

And I’ll remind you: Schwab identifies four categories of things a prospect wants a product to do for them: 1) help them gain something, 2) help them be something, 3) help them do something, and 4) help them save something.

Last time, we talked about what your product will help them do. This time, it’s what the prospect will gain. And you might be surprised some of things old Mr. Schwab came up with.

So here’s what we’re going to do today. First, we’ll go over all seven things Schwab found prospects want to know if your product can do. It doesn’t have to do more than one, and, as we’ll discuss, it may not even have to do one of these seven, but these are all proven winners.

I’ll show you how and why. We’ll cover some examples you are probably familiar with in general, like product categories, or in specific, like promotions you’ve probably heard of.

As for our source of this list of eight things:

Vic Schwab spent 44 years working in advertising and kept a lot of notes. Ad Age magazine called Schwab “the greatest mail-order copywriter of all time.” In 1941, he wrote a series of five articles for Printers Ink magazine and titled the series “How to Write a Good Advertisement.”

In 1961, he expanded that series into the book, “How to Write a Good Ad.” The book is so important that my mentoring clients and I spend almost half a year going through this book in a special way I’ve developed. It’s as good in its own way as Gene Schwartz’s “Breakthrough Advertising.” In short, I’d saw Schwab’s book is a gold mine for copywriters.

Today, we’ll look at how you can use one or more of these seven things in your copy.

Now, as I mentioned before, you don’t have to use one of these. But, your odds are usually a lot better if you do. But we’ll look at how you can use the general idea and adapt it to something else, if you think that will work better for you.

Also, a quick reminder: Everything in this and the other three podcasts in this series come from page 47… the first half of the page. That might seem like a lot of podcast based on very little information, but remember, he spent 44 years testing and tracking ads and reviewing other top-performing ads. So it’s condensed practical wisdom.

And a link to the book, How to Write a Good Advertisement, by Victor Schwab:

Keywords: classic advertising

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