Your advertising can change your results

40 years ago, ace copywriter Denny Hatch heard Dorothy Kerr of US News & World Report say, “If you want to be successful in direct mail, you have to know who’s mailing what and track which mailings come in over and over again. These are the controls – the hugely profitable money-makers that are making marketers rich. Save them, study them and steal smart.”
Denny started collecting junk mail – filing it by category, analyzing it, labeling it and tracking mailers that came in over and over again. Those were the ones that had worked with great success.
You can do the same thing with any advertising you plan to do for your business.
Save mailers. Tear ads out of magazines and newspapers. Record radio and TV commercials that are often repeated. Create digital files for ads you find online that could stimulate ideas for your own advertising.
Those who buy advertising repeat those that draw the most response.
Whether you create your own ads, get them from your vendors or use an ad agency, you are directly responsible for their cost – and their effectiveness. It’s your money.
The full story is at .
We share such ideas in “Uncover Your Inner Sales Genius.” For a $4.99 electronic copy, contact us at
Copyright 2020, The Bellune Co., Inc.

Tiny ads can pack a powerful punch

Imagine you are desperate for steady work to get your spouse off your back about feeding your family. Your kids are under-fed and always hungry.
Then you see this tiny ad in the Help Wanted classifieds: “Men wanted for hazardous journey, small wages, etc.”
The effect is electric, writes ace advertising copy writer Denny Hatch.
This is an advertising masterpiece. It would be as effective in 2019 to out-of-work millennials living in their parents’ basements as it was 116 years ago.
This ad is the stuff of legend – 30 short, dynamic words. It generated hundreds of responses. From it Ernest Shackleton put together a crew of 27 adventurers for a celebrated expedition to the South Pole.
Are you looking for people who are willing to take a chance on you and your business? People who have the guts and brains to help tackle your challenges?
We published a similar ad for sales help. It extolled “Set your own hours. Be your own boss. Reap the rewards.”
We didn’t want order takers or people who just showed up for a paycheck. The ad appealed to the entrepreneurs we wanted.
We share such ideas in “Maverick Entrepreneurs’ Million Dollar Strategies.”
For a $20 personally autographed copy, contact us at 803-359-7633.
Copyright 2019, The Bellune Co., Inc.

Writing tip: Be original

Good morning, fellow scribblers.
Being original, one of our writers – author and journalist Tom Poland – says is hard work.
You bet. It’s hard thinking, too.
Writers who use trite phrases and reader-wearying cliches are lazy thinkers and worse writers.
Our son Mark and I were watching a college football game on TV the other Saturday.
We started counting the sports cliches spewing from the play-by-play guy and the color commentator. On one play alone, Mark counted six cliches.
We suspected the two thought they were doing a great job.
These crafty little critters creep into our writing if we’re not paying attention,
Words and phrases that turn us off are worn smoother than an old saddle.
The first few times they were used was OK.
After that, nothing, nada.
We have become “attention deficit” to these “thoughtless writer” sins.
The biggest problem with cliches for writers is that they are like radio jingles.
They stick in our minds and it’s hard to get them out.
You probably remember jingles you first heard as a child.
Cliches are like that.
They have become familiar with use.
They’ve lost their magic, writer Drayton Bird says. Our minds glide over them.
You see it too often in poorly-written advertising.
Almost all advertisers are passionate about their offers.
They are even more passionate about making sales.
Here are a few cliches worth avoiding like a sore throat:
• A chip off the old block
• A clean slate
• A dark and stormy night
• A far cry
• A fine kettle of fish
• They came to play
The “Be a Better Writer” web site has a list of 681 of them.
If you are suffering from insomnia, go there.
I guarantee you will fall asleep in under 12.5 seconds.
Please feel free to share these tips with fellow scribblers.
They’re from my new book “The Little Red Book of Compelling Writing.”
If you would like me to include your comment in the book on the value you find in these tips, email 25 to 50 words to me at

It’s OK to copy but copy the best

Rosser Reeves coined the term USP (Unique Selling Proposition).
Your USP is those special benefits you offer that no one else can offer to your Ideal Clients in your niche market.
Rosser worked with President “Ike” Eisenhower, whose election campaign he helped run in the early 1950s. He was one of the first campaigns to use copy-testing.
Rosser tested slogans and marketing appeals. “I Like Ike” was the one that helped voters relate to his candidate.
Ace British copywriter Drayton Bird tells that story about Rosser who said, “Originality is the most dangerous word in the advertiser’s lexicon.” His brother in law, the legendary David Ogilvy, used to quote it often.
Helmut Krone, the great art director at Doyle, Dane Bernbach in the 1960s, once asked a young writer what he considered more important, to do your own thing or copy someone else’s work.
“Do my own thing” was the reply.
That’s wrong, he told the young man.
“Until you can do better, copy.”
What he meant was to watch what successful copywriters do and customize their concepts to what you are selling. Do that in your sales letters, advertising, marketing and your sales presentations.
I recommend Drayton’s newsletter. You can get it at
For a complimentary digital copy of “Uncover Your Inner Sales Genius,” email me at