I sent vitamins to Mick Jagger

I sent vitamins to Mick Jagger

This is the last day this week that I'll be sending you one of my favorite past Copy Insiders and "What's in Kim's Mailbox" issues. It's got a funny story from back when I was running a $23-million-a-year supplement business while in my early 30s. And some key...

Get your money for nothin’ and your checks for free

Get your money for nothin’ and your checks for free

Today I'm sending you a Copy Insiders and "What's in Kim's Mailbox" flashback issue. It's one I wrote 3+ years ago on my birthday. There's a valuable and widely-applicable lesson here you can use to really go deep into your prospect's head. In looking back, there's...

Gross is BACK, baby!

Gross is BACK, baby!

Direct mail can be a great source of inspiration for successful online sales pages and video sales letters (VSLs). In fact, many of the best-performing sales pages you'll fine online right now in the supplement niche were originally written as direct mail magalogs,...

“Do-it-yourself” copywriting training

“Do-it-yourself” copywriting training

Becoming a "great" copywriter is something many beginning and up-and-coming copywriters aspire to. And while everyone's definition of "great" may vary in terms of what their goals are, the path to greatness is often the same. It's being dedicated to continuous...

“Method acting” and winning sales copy

“Method acting” and winning sales copy

As you nurse your Halloween candy "hangover", perhaps your stomach is churning as you read this email.  Well, like I talked about in the interview I did with Glenn Fisher and Nick O'Connor (a snippet of which I shared with you yesterday), it's a great way to...

You need this but don’t get enough of it

You need this but don’t get enough of it

The past month of so I've been sending you some of my most popular past issues. That's because I was on a much-needed break that included a 3-week vacation. It was a fairly active but well-paced trip, starting with a few cold, rainy days in Munich for Oktoberfest (it...

How to use “pre-suasion” in your copy

How to use “pre-suasion” in your copy

About four years ago while attending the huge digital marketing event, Traffic and Conversion Summit, I saw a “fireside chat” onstage with Dr. Robert Cialdini, author of the classic book on marketing psychology, Influence, and his more recent Pre-suasion. There were...

I’m just feeding you a bunch of lines

I’m just feeding you a bunch of lines

Right now I'm thinking of a variation on the classic Gary Bencivenga headline for a financial newsletter promotion many years ago... Lies! Lies! Lies! But instead, this particular headline would be... Lines! Lines! Lines! What kind of lines, you ask? SUBJECT LINES, my...

The accountability secret to moving forward faster

The accountability secret to moving forward faster

Being a freelancer or entrepreneur can be a tough experience. We valiantly try to go it alone, relying on whatever internal motivators we can draw on to wake up each morning, accomplish what we need to get done, and go on to the next item on the list. Or not. Yep, all...

What Jessica saw in Roger Rabbit…and how to use it in copy

What Jessica saw in Roger Rabbit…and how to use it in copy

Many years ago a movie called "Who Framed Roger Rabbit?" featured a mismatched couple: the glamorous Jessica and somewhat dorky Roger Rabbit. One of the famous lines associated with Jessica's character is this: "I'm not bad...I'm just drawn that way." But there's...

Responsibility is a heavy responsibility

Responsibility is a heavy responsibility

I've heard from so many copywriters about their struggles with "Imposter Syndrome"... the feeling that others (their clients) will figure out that they're some kind of fraud. It shocks me how I hear this from successful copywriters even at the highest levels... heck,...

Little orange pills

Little orange pills

Issue #159--July 19, 2022 In celebration of my milestone birthday just over a week ago (yes, the big 6-0, holy crap), I'm taking a trip down memory lane... I'm sharing some of my earliest memories, and tying each one to a copywriting or marketing lesson you can apply...

“Beach body ready”? Not today, Satan!

“Beach body ready”? Not today, Satan!

In recent years it's felt like we're making some strides with how women are portrayed in advertising. But an email that landed in my inbox yesterday made me start to doubt that, at least initially. It made me flash back to 2015, when a huge billboard portraying a...

How to bash other products effectively (while elevating your own)

How to bash other products effectively (while elevating your own)

Issue #158 Whether you're a seasoned marketer or wet-behind-the-ears copywriter, chances are you've heard about the importance of figuring out what stage of market sophistication your product or service is in. It's a crucial part of my research process that I cover...

The Good, the Bad, and the Freaky

The Good, the Bad, and the Freaky

It's been a while since I put out a fresh new issue of "What's in Kim's Mailbox". But in the meantime, I've been collecting an array of direct mail and email promotions that have caught my eye (and not always in a positive way). So to reward you for the long wait,...

The two most important parts of any promo

The two most important parts of any promo

Issue #157 In today's issue, I'm going to be summarizing the very best tidbits of copywriting "gold" I dropped last week--just in case you missed them. These tips and tactics are sure to help you with the two most important parts of any promo... plus give you an idea...

Fights, card tricks, and popcorn (oh, my!)

Fights, card tricks, and popcorn (oh, my!)

Every once in a while I have one of my Fast Track to A-List copywriting mentees take over the helm and write a guest issue. And today we're hearing from Cain Smith... a copywriter from Manchester, England. He's been freelancing for more than 3 years and earlier this...

The ad I wish hadn’t worked

The ad I wish hadn’t worked

I hated this ad I saw the other day. I hated it SO much that I reached out to my client, the president of the company who had sent it to his list as an affiliate offer. This ad represented, to me, one of the worst cases of preying on women's insecurities to sell them...

The case against “hype run amok”

The case against “hype run amok”

So your product spokesperson hasn't made the New York Times bestselling list. They haven't been quoted in any major media. They're nowhere near being considered a "household name" or well-recognized expert. But guess what? It doesn't matter... One of the most...

How to break copywriting rules like an artist…

How to break copywriting rules like an artist…

Scripts. Templates. Formulas. God help 'em, people LOVE them! They promise to make copywriting easier... faster... surer. They're like their own "unique mechanism" that gives you some sort of edge or shortcut.  Just like many of the folks I've marketed supplements to...

“Long or short?” Two hair-raising breakdowns…

“Long or short?” Two hair-raising breakdowns…

I'll never forget when I was working my first job out of college and living in Washington, DC. At least half my take-home pay went towards my share of a cockroach-infested Connecticut Avenue apartment. The rest had to cover groceries (what groceries? the fridge never...

Surprising secret to my copywriting success

Surprising secret to my copywriting success

Over the past few decades as a freelance copywriter, I've racked up a lot of big winners. I'm talking about dozens of successful controls, some of which ran for as long as 11 years (in fact, that one still's running)... and I've even beaten some legendary names along...

The cure for client jacka*sery

The cure for client jacka*sery

I've been talking a lot about "mansplaining" lately, but that's far from the worst thing that happens to both women and men when we're dealing with clients... There's a lengthy list of bad behavior, costly hassles, and other shenanigans that can make your freelancing...

I got you

I got you

I may well be the only copywriter or marketer on the planet who hasn't emailed their audience with some kind of reference to the slapping incident on last Sunday night's Oscars show. And at this point, not only am I personally sick of hearing about it (as I'm sure you...