Archive for September, 2010

I Charge Too Little for My Copy!

September 16th, 2010 by Bob Bly

An article on DirectCreative.com confirms my worst fears: I charge way too little for my copywriting services.

The article gives some ballpark fee ranges for typical professional-level freelance copywriting projects.

News releases are listed as $500 to $1,500. I can’t ever recall getting anything close to $1,500 for a press release, nor do I think my clients would pay it.

Print ads are listed as $1,500 to $5,000+. I’d like to meet the client who pays more than $5,000 for copy only for a one-page ad.

Blog posts are $250 to $500 each. I don’t write blog posts as a service, but $500 for a single post seems like quick, easy money.

Fees for other projects are more in line with what I think the market will pay, including:

–Website — $500 to $750 per page.
–Online sales page — $1,500 to $5,000+.
–Small brochure — $500 to $1,500

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Category: General | 14 Comments »

Master info marketing for under sixteen bucks

September 15th, 2010 by Bob Bly

The problem with so many “get rich quick selling information on
the Internet” courses is they cost a small fortune. And some of them give you pretty thin content in return.

But now you can get everything I know about marketing information in
my new paperback book, “How to Write & Sell Simple Information for Fun and Profit? for less that sixteen bucks!

Buy it today:

www.bly.com/simpleinfo

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Category: General | 49 Comments »

Check out My New Book

September 14th, 2010 by Bob Bly

My New Book How to Write and Sell Simple Information for Fun and Profit: Your Guide to Writing and Publishing Books, E-Books, Articles, Special Reports, Audio Programs, DVDs and Other How-To Content shows How to Make Money Writing and Publishing Books, E-Books, Articles, Special Reports, Audio Programs, DVDs, and Other How-To Content.

There are thousands of talented writers who make a pittance from their writing because they don?t know what readers want to buy or how to sell it to them. Many people nowadays are looking to either change careers or start earning a second income. This book covers in detail how you could make serious money writing and selling information ? even better ? this could be done in your spare time and in the comfort of your own home.

In this book you?ll discover how to:
? Come up with ideas for saleable how-to books, articles, reports, and seminars.
? Research, write, and publish effective, practical how-to instructional materials in a variety of formats.
? Build your reputation and a loyal following in your field.
? And earn $100,000 a year or more!

But don?t just take my word for it. To read FREE book excerpts, click here now: http://howtowriteandsellsimpleinformation.com/excerpts.php

This is definitely worth checking out. Enjoy!

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Category: General | 56 Comments »

The 4 Levels of Marketing Competence

September 2nd, 2010 by Bob Bly

During my quarter century as a copywriter, I have observed that business owners and managers fall into one of four categories as far as their competence and skill in marketing is concerned.

By recognizing which category you are in and taking the action steps recommended below, you can move up to the next level and significantly increase the ROI from your marketing efforts.

>> The lowest level of marketing competence is ?unconscious incompetence.? You don?t know what you are doing, and worse, you don?t know that you don?t know.

You may even think you are a pretty sharp marketer, even though to others, that is clearly not the case. Egotistical small business owners who appear in their own TV commercials and junior employees at ?creative? Madison Avenue ad agencies can fall into this category.

Do you think you are an okay marketer, and blame the lack of results generated by your marketing always on external factors, such as bad timing, bad lists, or bad luck? You are probably in the unconscious incompetence stage.

Solution: Recognize that you don?t know what you?re doing and it is hurting your business. Get help. Hire a marketing manager who knows more than you do. Or take a marketing course or workshop. Read marketing blogs and trade publications.

>> The next stage up the ladder is ?conscious incompetence.? You?ve recognized that the reason your marketing isn?t working is that you don?t know what you?re doing.

Again, take the steps listed above. When I was at this stage as an advertising manager recently graduated from college and with only a year of work experience under my belt (instead of the considerable paunch that resides there now), I hired an experienced ad agency and leaned on them for guidance.

This strategy worked well for me and my employer. The company got better advertising than I could have produced on my own. And working with the agency accelerated my own marketing education, making me a more valuable employee.

>> Moving higher up the ladder of marketing competence, you reach the stage of ?conscious competence.? You?ve read the books, taken the courses, and understand what works. But your experience at putting it into practice is limited.

That means whenever you want to create a promotion, you have to slow down and think about what you are doing. It doesn?t come naturally.

In this stage, you should keep checklists, formulas, and swipe files (examples of successful promotions you admire) close at hand. Model your own efforts after the winners of others.

Don?t try to reinvent the wheel. Observe what works and adapt it to your own product and market.

>> Do this enough times, and you will slowly begin to become a true master of marketing. You will reach the highest level of marketing competence, ?unconscious competence.?

At this stage, coming up with great offers, promotional ideas, headlines, and copy is second nature to you. You do it naturally, without having to consult your checklists or reference files. The quality of your work is better, and it comes faster and easier.

However, you should still keep an extensive swipe file of promotions. Borrowing ideas and inspiration from direct mail packages that are working is a time-honored tradition in our industry, as long as it does not step over into plagiarism or copyright infringement.

My colleague Michael Masterson says it takes approximately 1,000 hours of practice to become really competent at copywriting, marketing, playing the flute, or anything else. If you have expert guidance, you may be able to cut that to 500 hours.

But ultimately, you learn by doing ? and doing a lot. If you are at this stage, keep doing more and more marketing. When you put in 5,000 hours, you will become great, not just good, and your results will be even better.

Action step: Rank yourself using the four levels of marketing competence as described here, and follow the recommendations for whatever stage you are in.

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Category: General | 19 Comments »