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Episode 068 - The Big Three – Part 2

Published by: David Garfinkel on 08-06-2018

On today’s show, we’ll pick up where we left off last week.

Friend requested I give a talk to his group of copywriters and business owners. One of the copywriters in the group asked me: what does it take for a copywriter to go from “good” to great? And what I do work on with people when I coach them.

Six things I’ve found… We’ll talk about the first three in today’s show.


Copy is powerful. You’re responsible for how you use what you hear on this podcast. Most of the time, common sense is all you need. But if you make extreme claims… and/or if you’re writing copy for offers in highly regulated industries like health, finance, and business opportunity… you may want to get a legal review after you write and before you start using your copy. My larger clients do this all the time.

The Big Three

When I start working with a copywriter, 3 questions

1. What do you want?

2. How are you gonna get it?

3. What’s standing in the way?

Coaching is based on the answers to these three questions.

First two – different for every copywriter.

Third one – nearly always, there are six things standing in the way.

Last week we talked about the about the first three.

#1 Not enough confidence

#2 Can’t identify your target customer and get into his/her head

#3 Can’t come up with good enough big ideas/hooks

#4 1 thing standing in the way: Can’t write killer headlines

- some of this is skill

- some of this is knowledge: lack of research & familiarity with who customer is and what customer wants

- There’s some psychology in writing headlines. I coach clients in getting familiar with stages of the market, and customer sophistication.

#5 thing standing in the way: Can’t tell great stories in sales copy

- Storytelling is one of the simplest and one of the most complicated things in the world.

- Everybody tells stories all the time. It’s a natural human activity.

- But it’s a real art to tell a story concisely in a way that captivates your listeners or readers from start to finish

- And telling a story in sales copy is a whole different animal

#6 thing standing in the way: Can’t write killer bullets

- Bullets are like freeze-dried salesmanship

- I know one A-list copywriter who rewrites every bullet four times

- That’s because he knows one bullet, by itself, can close the sale

- It’s true that there are formulas and templates for bullets

- But coming up with unique, on-target bullets is a big part of what makes a great copywriter.


1. Confidence

2. ID target customers, get into their heads

3. Come up with enough good ideas and hooks

4. Killer headlines

5. Great stories

6. Killer bullets

Keywords: copywriting edge

Garfinkel Coaching