The Copywriter's Roundtable

Inspiration or Flat-Out Imitation? 0

Inspiration or Flat-Out Imitation?

Every great direct response copywriter can tell you what a valuable thing it is to have a “swipe file,” that burgeoning bin or desktop folder of winning promos crafted by other copywriters. The idea, of course, isn’t to rip off the best of your colleagues… but rather to read, see what’s working, and use that to get your own creative juices flowing. Not everybody gets that. Some people understand the concept, but go ahead and plagiarize anyway…

How One Big Idea Trumps Lots of Small Ones 5

How One Big Idea Trumps Lots of Small Ones

“Shut up and listen,” I said. I was talking to Michael Masterson, the great copywriter, publisher, and best-selling author. Had I lost my mind? Not at all.

Rather, I was summing up the core idea behind one of the best-selling books of all time, Dale Carnegie’s “How to Win Friends and Influence People.” That, in my opinion, is the key idea behind that book. And the fact that it’s so easily defined has a lot to do with its success.

Michael came back with another example… I delivered a third… and the volley went back and forth, until we ran out of ready examples. It wasn’t a game. See, Michael and I — along with another brilliant copywriter, Bill Bonner — had just finished running four straight days of an intensive, private copywriting bootcamp…

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