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How to Write Ads That Sell — Part II

Posted Friday, July 18, 2008 by momscashblog | 27 Comments so far

The following guidelines will help you write good ad copy if you’re using your blog to make money by selling a product or service. If you need to know more about ad writing, there’s many books with more details (Also read Part I in my last post). Here’s a couple of books on advertising that are rated very well: The Online Advertising Playbook and Tested Advertising Methods.

Ad headlines are different from blog post titles, so don’t use this advice for post titles. Headlines can be 2 or 3 lines long and they should be intriguing. On the other hand, blog post titles should be short and to the point if you want them to be searchable. You don’t have to worry about anyone searching for the headline of your ad. They’ll be searching for your product or service.

Ask a Question Headline: Ask a question in your headline to compel your reader to continue reading the ad. Some good question headline starters are: Why should you… What would you do if…. When should you… Would you… Should you… Could you… Did you know… and What if… An example would be: What would you do if your blog traffic doubled overnight and tripled within a week’s time?  This headline would compel the reader to continue reading if they are interested in blogs and traffic.

How-To Headlines: Of course how to’s are great titles for book, especially E-books, but they also make great headlines and can be more lengthy. If you’re writing an E-book, how to’s are a sure winner WHEN you have information that appeals to a large group of people.

Tell Your Story
With online advertising editorial style ads sell very well because people come online for information. You can tell the story of why you created your product or why you chose to sell it. A story can help the customer relate to you and your product.

Tell the problem first: When you make an editorial style ad, you should tell th problem first. The problem is the reason you created or are selling your product. (i.e. you could not get all the info you needed to start your business) There usually is a problem or you wouldn’t need it… and that is why YOUR CUSTOMER will need your product also, so telling the problem you had makes you relatable.

Tell the solution: The solution is your product! You found the solution to a problem and you are sharing it with others so they won’t have the same problems as you did. Your product should make life easier for others or motivate them in some way.

The Guarantee
If customers know they can get their money back they will be more apt to buy your product. In fact, your chances of getting them to buy your product goes up 65% with a guarantee! (provided they want the product in the first place). A guarantee also lets the customer know that you have faith in your product and that you’ll back it up. Make sure you’re prepared to abide by your guarantee and give the the money back. Once you know what the problem is you can fix it for future sales.

The Price
Don’t give the price of your product in the first paragraph. Save it for after you’ve given your story or your pitch for why they should buy your product. Your price will look lower if you compare it to something else that makes it look ridiculously low. This technique is very effective to use in your headline… but don’t give the price in your headline. An example of using this in a headline would be: “For the same price as three lattes you could have….” A Starbucks Latte costs about $8 dollars, so three could be about $24. If you compare your product to 3 cups of coffee, it looks very low.

Another way to make your price look low is to break it down to pennies a day or to $1 a day if it’s a monthly charge. By comparing the price of your product to pennies or a dollar, you’re showing the customer that they really can afford to buy it.

Don’t Scam!
They say it’s easy to scam people with the internet because everyone is anonymous. I think most people know enough not to scam others, but a product you’re selling might be a little scammy or “tricky” with the charges without you even knowing. If this happens you should help them get their money back if you can. Then let the advertiser know about it and remove the ad if it’s a scam and/or find something different to sell. What good is making money if it hurts other people in the process?

Find a Formula
Take a closer look at an ad that works well, or one you recently bought a product from. Find the formula they used by dissecting the ad and craft your ad in a similar way. To help decide what the formula is, ask you self these questions: What made me buy the product? What type of headline did they use? Did they tell a story that you could relate to? Was there a guarantee?

With online ads you can experiment so if one doesn’t work well you can keep trying till you get it right. It’s a good idea to run your ad by others first (friends or family) to get another point of view. You can even send your ad to me jj@momscashblog.com and I’ll gladly check it out and give you my feedback or answer any questions you have. I’ll keep it confidential and I might even buy your product if it’s a good ad! lol

Robert Cyr July 19th, 2008 (1:19 pm)

JJ – I have been experimenting with sales letters and find your two posts most helpful…Thanks

Meme July 19th, 2008 (6:02 pm)

Hey JJ it’s just me MEME… Made a comment on the Part I and Part II but the comments showed up on Part I…Oh well…just learning, but really did love the posts. Very helpful.

Rachel July 19th, 2008 (11:39 pm)

Wow, this has helped me a lot. I was pretty much doing the opposite here, arg.
Thanks for the great info.

Gail July 20th, 2008 (3:56 am)

I always get things with a money back guarantee but I never sent anything back n my life.


hey jj, couple questions … i’ve never given any type of guarantee on anything because i assume people will abuse it. especially with things like ebooks, everyone would just buy it and say they didnt like it so they could get their money back … ?

also in part 1 last paragraph you said they need to feel like they’re getting a good deal. you have any more specific tips/examples on how to do that, without sounding ridiculously corny (like the $500 with a line drawn through it and $10 written next to it lol)?

revenue July 20th, 2008 (12:51 pm)

First i want to say thanks for your visit, second your tips is great it can be helpful to posting an ads, i’ll be waiting for the next tips :)

Lou July 20th, 2008 (1:45 pm)

Hi, your ad is now on in my blog.

Have a great day!


Moms Cash Blog July 21st, 2008 (1:44 am)

Hi Robert, I think e-mail campaigns are great for advertisers, but advertisers are havng big problems with all of the spam blockers. My ISP is very strick and blocks a lot of ad emails and even blocks some RSS e-mails as spam. I get a lot of Viagra ads but other legitimate e-mail ads get blocked, I’ve been trying to figure out why and I found the answer… I checkd the properties and found that all the ads from Yahoo or AOL make it thru. So my ISP spamblocker thinks ALL Yahoo and AOL mail could be from friends/family no matter whats in the e-mail.. I called my ISP and they said this is true. If an ad comes from name@yahoo.com it will get thru most spam blocks because a lot of people use yahoo and AOL for personal e-mails. (thought that was interesting to know) Some good info on e-mail ad campaigns is http://www.wilsonweb.com. With e-mails the subject line is very important because they can get deleted before they even open it.. if the subject looks lke an ad.

P.S. btw, I don’t use Viagra! lol :)

Meme…I saw your comment on Part I. Thanks… Glad to have your comments no matter where you leave them! (long as they are on my site.) lol

Rachael… Glad this could help you! Good site you have and I’m coming back to find that place where you got the free stuff. I want the cosmetics you showed. lol

Gail…Me too, I like knowing I could get my money back…. not that I ever use it.. but.

Moms Cash Blog July 21st, 2008 (1:50 am)

Stak… studies show people dont usually bother to send things back… but that could be different with E-books. I’d give it a try cuz money back guarantees can make the sale happen! If they start asking for their money back I wold remove it… Never saw a study on that (it’s info and they could copy it and ask for $$ back) it also depends on the targetted group your book is written for. The http://www.wilsonweb.com is a good one for E-books too.. He’s supposed to have the best E-book on how to write E-books, I think.. Looks like they sell a zillion of them.

and Yeah, I hate corney too!.. lol.. You can make the price look good by saying how much they COULD make if they used your techniques. Like “just by using 2 of my secret tips you could make $100 a day”… (it’s kind of tricky because if they don’t make that amount they think they’re not doing it right! lol) But by figuring how much they could potentially make, it’s a good way to show your price is low.

Hi Rev… Thanks for visiting. I wasn’t going to do a part III. (I didn’t want to bore anyone. lol) But I will talk about writing ads again. It’s something I know so I like to share whatever I can to help.

Hey Lou… Yes, my entrecard ad is on your site. But of all days, Entre had problems. LOL Maybe Graham will give us a do-over, or give us some points back. Thanks for letting me know. :)

sarah July 21st, 2008 (6:05 pm)

hey girlie – I sent you another email (replied to your email) and I think it is stuck in your spam again – could you check?


Moms Cash Blog July 21st, 2008 (9:51 pm)

Hi Sarah, sorry I just got home. I don’t have anything from you… just your first one that I replied to. Try again and I’ll keep my eye out for it! You’re using jj@momscashblog.com.. right? JJ :)

Moms Cash Blog July 22nd, 2008 (1:47 am)

Jackie, thanks for letting me know about that. I do appreciate it! :)

Laura July 22nd, 2008 (4:38 am)

I have read other blogs, including JohnCow.com a buyer wanting a full refund on an eBook. Hmmm…..from my experience, its does not matter what industry you are the averages in returns will be about 8% of total sales. This can be huge when your GMS are high and are selling higher priced items. With the ecomnomy now, returns, cancellation, damages and drop in sales can hurt anyone.

JJ – the information you have provided is most helpful. Great hints and the link to the site. That’s right JJ, keep it simple honest, do not set up people for disappointment. I used to click on the links making false promises too :)

Ezekiel Haynes July 22nd, 2008 (8:58 pm)

Thank you JJ this is wonderful information – great insight!

Moms Cash Blog July 22nd, 2008 (10:18 pm)

Hi Laura, Yes, there are some people who will send things back no matter what. I think basically knowing we can get our money back is what makes us take the risk and buy things! (Also, we don’t click on those false promises twice, do we? lol) :)

Ezekiel…. I just saw your video of Earle Nightengale. Even though it’s from the 50s it’s well worth listening to and the info is timeless. I’m so glad you found it! I have studied the laws of attraction and was just thinking of posting about it. Your video has set me into action. Thanks! :)

sarah July 22nd, 2008 (10:22 pm)

hey jj,

yes, I am using that email address. also, I have been using “reply” from your emails so it should be going back to you…but I did check and the “reply to” address is that jj@momscashblog

I don’t know what is going on?

Moms Cash Blog July 23rd, 2008 (12:29 am)

Hey Sarah, Got it! I guess my mail is just slow. Catch you later :)


actually yea i think you should do part 3, these are some of my favorite posts. maybe some good examples too and also ad examples you’ve run that have been successful/unsuccessful

Work At Home Mom Tara July 23rd, 2008 (2:12 am)

Headline questions work very well. Not only with blog advertising but banner and button advertising. It gets people to thinking.

Robert Cyr July 23rd, 2008 (1:00 pm)

Concerning Ebook sales…I have very few who abuse the 100% guarantee. My refund rate is low, maybe 1% or 2% sales a month at the most. I really believe this is due to offering quality information. If you fool your customer into buying an ebook and then under-deliver…you are going to have a high return rate.

Moms Cash Blog July 23rd, 2008 (3:45 pm)

Gee thanks Stak! I will do more on ads a little later. (Looks like you’re a good indicator of what works because my stats show the advertising posts are doing well. lol) but today I’m gonna put up a post on the Entrecard/SezWho partnership. I want to know what others think of it and if others are going with it. I don’t like the idea so I want some feedback.

Hi Tara.. Yes questions are good because (if it’s interesting) our brain needs to know the answer to the question once it is asked.

Robert, good to know about E-books. 1-2% is great! Thanks. I never sent any back. I do wonder about bloggers as a customer base and would they send things back more than the average Joe?

I found a good tool to check e-mails before sending them. http://www.lyris.com/contentchecker. It’s free.

Moms Cash Blog July 23rd, 2008 (4:04 pm)

Hey everyone… if you have some time you should go to Ezekiel Haynes blog and watch his video on How to Get Thru a Depression. The video is of Earl Nightingale. He’s an older timer like Dale Carnagie, Charles Hannel, and other greats who all successful businesspeople have admired and followed their teachings. (People like Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, Oprah, etc.) It is a rather long tape and it’s from the 50s but it is great knowledge for life and success. It’s what The Secret was formed around before it was “The Secret” lol. It touches on goal setting, the laws of attraction, giving to others and getting back more than you give, grattitude, etc. I hope you listen to it. :)

Cash Collector July 23rd, 2008 (7:51 pm)

Get paid to hide your links, blogs, or websites!


sarah July 23rd, 2008 (10:07 pm)

Hey JJ –

I replied to your email – I thought I should tell you since my replies get lost in your spam :)


Shafar July 27th, 2008 (9:45 am)

Ya ofcourse, telling our own story while selling is a good idea. Its a general trick, also used by a Salesperson!
Thanks for the tips

binod January 29th, 2009 (6:36 am)

It is very helpfull topic for my site.

Nancy May 21st, 2009 (3:09 am)

I watched your video on pinging and will give that a try also…Thanks again for sharing all this info…

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