I was interviewed yesterday and once again was asked, “Which works better: Long or short copy?”
After writing copy for over thirty years, you’d think I know the answer.
Well, I do.
My rule of thumb is this: The higher the price for what you are selling, the longer the copy should be.
In other words, if you are giving away something for free, you don’t need to write much to get people to ask for it. For example,
FREE: Get my free email course called
Recession-Proof Marketing. Just send an
email to [email protected] and it’s yours.
Based on those few words, most people will act. Why? Because the item is free. There won’t be many objections to asking for it.
And note: If you didn’t click and request the free course above, it’s no doubt because you still have some questions in your mind about it. Well, that’s why you need longer copy. Long copy is supposed to answer your objections so you’ll act now. So even “free” may require some
copy to get people to act.
But what if I wanted you to send me $1,000 for my course on Hypnotic Selling Secrets? You’d want to know more, wouldn’t you?
As a result, I need to write longer copy. Make sense?
But most people fear no one will read their long copy.
Well, let’s look at that issue.
People read entire books. Why wouldn’t they read your long copy?
People become information junkies when they are interested in making an important purchase.
Why wouldn’t they read your long copy?
People will read any length
of copy as long as it is interesting to them
This is why legendary copywriters like David Garfinkel, or Yanik Silver, or even me, are paid $25,000+ to write a sales letter. Our job is to write interesting copy that sells. That ain’t easy. Anyone can fill up twelve pages with words. But to fill them with words that hold interest and lead to a sale, ah, there’s the Holy Grail of marketing.
And notice this very blog entry.
I couldn’t answer the question of long or short copy with just a yes or no because it would leave too many questions in your mind. Sales copy is the same. In order to handle the objections someone may have to buying from you, you have to write longer copy. Again, the higher price, the longer copy.
Some day I will write a book on this whole subject. (If there is a book just on this subject alone, please let me know.)