As I write this, marketing legend Dan Kennedy is in hospice. He has days to live. He may in fact be gone by the time I post this.
I am shaken. Dan has influenced me more than any other living marketer.
I have read his books, listened to his talks, devoured his newsletters, bought his courses, and more.
He has always been supportive of me.
He loved my book on P.T. Barnum, There’s A Customer Born Every Minute.He plugged it numerous times on stage, in his newsletters, and more.
He had me write about how I turned my Rolls Royce Phantom into a highly paid mastermind on wheels. He published it on the front page of his newsletter.
He interviewed me once with Jay Conrad Levinson and Jay Abraham, a humbling and joyous experience to be included with such icons.
He asked me to write the foreword to his book, No B.S. Marketing to the Affluent. I was so honored, I wrote and rewrote it until it was a masterpiece. He loved it. I was proud.
Years ago I interviewed him for my Hypnotic Gold series. It was on wealth attraction. It was one of the highlights of my career. You can listen to it here https://hypnotic-marketing-delivery.s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/interviews/Dan+Kennedy.mp4
We talked about writing a book together. We kicked around ideas about events, joint ventures, hanging out, and more.
While he taught me copywriting and direct response marketing, and always reminded me to keep my eye on the bottom line, I find writing about him as he lay dying the most difficult writing of my life.
I don’t know how to process this let alone write about it.
Dan, I am forever grateful to you.
Godspeed on your next journey.
PS – Read about Dan’s current state at https://dankennedytribute.com
Note: You can listen to my Hypnotic Gold interview with Dan Kennedy on wealth attraction here https://hypnotic-marketing-delivery.s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/interviews/Dan+Kennedy.mp4
I’ve been writing about hypnotic stories since the 1990s.
My first e-book, Hypnotic Writing, described them.
I created Hypnotic Writing out of two passions of mine in the 1980s and 1990s: literature and copywriting.
Jack London, Mark Twain, William Saroyan and other great story telling authors fascinated me.
But so did great copywriters like Robert Collier, Bruce Barton, and John Caples.
After speculating on how each wrote their stories, I developed Hypnotic Writing as a way to explain it and teach it.
In short, I combined both styles of writing to create a third style.
I’ve written about this in many of my other early marketing books, including Buying Trances.
Of course, my book on P.T. Barnum, There’s A Customer Born Every Minute, is packed with hypnotic stories.
But I just discovered even more proof that hypnotic stories increase sales, influence, and more.
Let me explain:
I came across a project called Significant Objects.
The idea behind Significant Objects was to create a scientific study to see whether creative stories about mediocre objects could persuade people to buy near worthless stuff.
In other words, the authors would take a simple object that you might find at a garage sale for one dollar.
Then they would write a fictional story about it.
And then they would list the item, with the story, on eBay.
Surprisingly (or not), the item sold for many times its original price.
They did this for 100 objects.
The results were astonishing.
Objects that originally sold for around one dollar, were each placed on eBay with an accompanying made-up story.
The story triggered sales.
Those meaningless objects, now given meaning, sold for thousands of dollars in total.
For example, a Missouri shot glass, which looked like trash to me and originally sold for $1, had a fictional story written about it.
The story and photo were put on eBay.
That shot glass then sold for $76.
That’s a $75 profit from a hypnotic story.
That’s the power of a story.
The point being, the stories did the selling.
Of course, I’m not at all advising you to write fictional stories about your product or service.
But you have stories.
They are from you (how you began your business or why) or from your customers (testimonials from satisfied people).
It’s those hypnotic stories that can increase your sales and influence.
In my book, The Seven Lost Secrets of Success, I advised revealing “the business nobody knows.”
In other words, tell the story behind you, your product, your service, and/or employee.
Your hypnotic stories will bring your business to life.
There’s a site you can visit http://significantobjects.com/ that fully describes the Significant Objects study, and their stories. It’s worth a look.
Their site opens saying, “Significant Objects, a literary and anthropological experiment devised by Rob Walker and Joshua Glenn, demonstrated that the effect of narrative on any given object’s subjective value can be measured objectively.”
Meanwhile, what’s your hypnotic story?
PS – My newest book is out this week: Dr. Joe Vitale’s “Greatest Law of Attraction Quotes.” You can find the printed and Kindle versions at Amazon. Open the book anywhere and see what “hypnotic story” begins for you. 🙂
Robert Collier remains one of my all-time favorite authors.
He influenced me when I was a kid in Ohio in the 1960s, with his books, The Secret of the Ages and The Amazing Secrets of the Masters of the Far East.
Collier was the first to introduce me to the Law of Attraction, mind power, positive thinking, and more, while I was a teenager searching for truth in books. His writings deeply influenced me.
“Plant the seed of desire in your mind and it forms a nucleus with power to attract to itself everything needed for its fulfillment.” – Robert Collier
I didn’t know Collier was a copywriter and direct response marketer until, as a struggling adult living in Houston, I stumbled across his magnum opus, The Robert Collier Letter Book.
I still remember seeing the hardback book, with a faded yellow jacket, on the shelf of Colleen’s Books in Houston.
I stared in disbelief.
I carried the hefty book to the front desk and asked Colleen if the author was the same one who wrote all those metaphysical books.
She didn’t know.
But as I scanned the pages, and saw sales letters for those esoteric books I had read decades earlier, I knew Robert Collier was the author of all of it.
It changed my life forever.
I was an OK copywriter before the letter book; I was a hypnotic copywriter after it.
And it was a mention in the letter book that sent me on a wild adventure to discover all I could about Bruce Barton, which led to my writing a turning point book in my career, The Seven Lost Secrets of Success.
And knowing that Collier was a marketer as well as a metaphysician paved the way for me becoming the same, and led to my book Spiritual Marketing, which was later retitled The Attractor Factor, which still later got me invited into the hit movie The Secret.
He so influenced me that I dedicated my book, Hypnotic Writing, to him.
I collect everything by and about Collier.
I have a paperback version of the Letter book, published during war years to save money.
I have an autographed copy of the first edition of the Letter book.
I have a little course he wrote on making money by mail.
I have a complete set of his original booklets.
What was Collier’s secret to success?
It wasn’t sales letters, as I would have guessed, it was ideas.
“Visualize this thing that you want, see it, feel it, believe in it. Make your mental blue print, and begin to build.” – Robert Collier
Robert Collier felt the idea was more important than the sales letter for it, though he obviously made an icon status legend for himself with his letters.
Collier knew numerous people of fame during his lifetime, including strongman George Jowett. I thought that was synchronistic as I know many strongmen of today, including Dennis Rogers and Iron Tamer David Whitley.
I was having lunch with Jerry and Esther Hicks, of Abraham fame, a decade or so past, when Esther said that the greats of long ago met and had lunch, just as we were having lunch that day. They, too, had been influenced by Collier.
Collier left us in 1950.
I was born in 1953.
I often wondered if I were the reincarnated version of him.
Of course, I never got to meet him, let alone have lunch with him, but his spirit, ideas, and wisdom live on, in all of his books, but particularly in his magnum opus, The Robert Collier Letter Book.
PS – Learn more about the Law of Attraction with these in-depth audio programs http://www.nightingale.com/authors/joe-vitale.html