Sex, Fun, Money… and More Sex

Monday, 9:27pm
Reno, NV
Oops, I did it again…”  (Britney, God love her…)

Howdy…

I’m on a roll here, grabbing criminally-ignored posts from the blog archives…

… and re-posting them prominently, so you criminally ignore them no longer.  With a few minor edits, of course, tailoring the prose to fit today’s quirky needs for advice.  (Hey, you don’t fit into your old high school jeans anymore, either, you know.)

Here, we have another dangerously-tasty post from not too long ago… which, I believe, requires no explanation other than to say it’s some serious insight into the writer’s brain.

You do NOT want to venture into this quagmire without a guide.  Which is what I’ve written here — a short “guide to the writer’s mind”.

Not exactly a hot Disneyland ride, but if you’re in business it’s some wicked-valuable info.

So, indulge, and enjoy (if you dare):

I’m gonna need your feedback on this.

See, I’ve always been a wave or two out of the mainstream… and that’s actually helped me be a better business dude, because this outsider status forces me to pay extra attention to what’s going on (so I can understand who I’m writing my ads to).

This extra focus means I’ve never taken anything for granted — especially not those weird emotional/rational triggers firing off in a prospect’s head while I’m wooing him on a sale.

And trust me on this: Most folks out there truly have some WEIRD shit going on in their heads, Continue Reading

How To Be A Sap.

Wednesday, 10:36pm
Reno, NV
To the moon, Alice!” (Ralph Kramden)

Howdy…

I’m recycling a post from a little while back, because it’s on a subject that can never be discussed too many times…

… especially when it’s important that you establish a real, visceral connection with people to make your business work.

In fact, what I’m bring up here is much more critical to creating effective advertising than many of the obvious things people tend to focus on (like “long copy versus shot copy”, or how to test offers).

Listen: If you understand how to use the powerful tool explained below…

… you can screw up almost every other part of creating your ad (or video, or website, or email, or whatever you’re using to get your story across)… and still crush it with results.

So ignore the details in this dusty post (like references to “Six Feet Under”, that great HBO series now long-gone)…

and know that the insight revealed here will forever be one of the most influential you’ll ever use in marketing.

In fact, it’s just becoming more and MORE important as social media and info-overwhelm continues to nudge everyone toward ADHD-Land, where attention spans are pathetic and fundamental human emotions like empathy wither.

Here’s the post (with a few edits and some added stuff):

Jeez Louise. Did you catch Sunday’s episode of “Six Feet Under”, with the jarring funeral scenes?

It was… shattering.

I was jarred back to every funeral I’d ever attended, and had emotions wrung out of me I’d long forgotten about.

Screw reality TV. The truly well-written fictional shows (most of them on HBO) can still rattle your cage like classic literature.

That episode was quality emotional-wringing.

Got me thinking, too. About empathy. And writing.

I’ve known people who seem to have shut down their empathy gears… and it becomes evident when they lose the ability to get outside of themselves and see the world from other people’s viewpoint.  Movies require you to emotionally connect with the characters…

… and I recall uncles who fell asleep during the pea-soup-spewing scenes in “The Exorcist”…Continue Reading

Watch, Learn, Make Your Move.

Saturday, 4:43pm
San Diego, CA
Arriba y arriba, por ti seré, por ti seré…” (La Bamba!)

Howdy…

Important alert today.

If you know, in your heart, you shoulda been there with us for the Action Seminar last week…

… and you just couldn’t make it…

… we’ve now got the Primo Solution for you.

It’s this: We filmed the whole darn thing — every thrilling, shocking, life-altering moment on stage, with a pro camera crew — and have decided to uncork the video immediately.

It’s now available, online, and ready for you to dive into with gusto.

To gain instant access to the professionally-shot video of this already-legendary Action Seminar, go here now.

What you’re about to witness is a seminar different than any other you’ve ever heard about, attended, or caught rumors of.  We called it the “Action Seminar” because it was all ABOUT action…

… meaning, finally getting your plan together to make 2011 your best year ever…

… and kick that puppy into high gear, right freakin’ NOW.

The joint was crawling with Rockstar marketers, like Perry Marshall, Mike Koenigs, Jason Moffatt…Continue Reading

Get A Room

Sunday, 3:25
Tampa Bay, Florida
So I said to the captain, please bring me my wine… he said we haven’t had that spirit here since 1969…” (Hotel California, of course)

Howdy.

Another guest blog post here (while I’m off to get ready for the totally awesome Action Seminar down in sunny San Diego this coming weekend)…

… by our good friend (and notorious freelance copywriter) Kevin Rogers.

I asked him to share the stories below, because they cracked me up when he first told them to me…

… and I realized the lessons for entrepreneurs here are just as solid as the stuff I picked up (early in my own career) from the street-wise salesmen I hung around.

Those real-world lessons from the dudes who knew how to close a deal face-to-face are critical to any decent sales process… even if you’re completely digital and never actually meet your prospects in the flesh.

This stuff is pure gold.  So listen up.  Here’s Kevin…

Thanks, John.

Okay, let me tell you a story about why bellmen don’t mind wearing those goofy uniforms at busy hotels and resorts… and how the lessons I learned in the job fit so well in the entrepreneurial world.

It’s true.  One of the most eye-opening jobs I held in my previous life — before freelance copywriting — was as a main entrance bellman here in Florida.

I learned more about “street-smart selling” in my short time in that role than from any other gig, including stand-up comic, bartender, or even Marketing VP of an online real estate company.

Here’s why…Continue Reading

Operation MoneySuck 2.0

Tuesday, 2:32pm
Reno, NV
And you may ask yourself, where does that highway go?” (Talking Heads)

Howdy.

Quickie post today…

… on a very important topic.

You hear me nattering about “Operation MoneySuck” all the time.  And some folks are confused about what it means.

So let’s do a refresher.

Here’s the story: Early in my career, I was hired by advertising legend Gary Halbert to help him write ads for clients.  The first day I arrived at his offices on Sunset Blvd (in West Hollywood), we were scheduled to slam out copy and plot “next moves” with some current clients.

However, just as my butt hit the chair across from his desk, two (count ‘em, two) secretaries AND his red-headed girlfriend (notorious for getting her way) burst in with bad news.

Lots of bad news, in fact.  The printer had just broken down, and shit needed to get copied NOW.  Some guy was ranting and raving on Line 2, threatening legal action over something.  The landlord was on the way up in the elevator, because there was a problem with the lease.  The bank was on Line 1, and so on.

These women were shaking with panic and consternation, freaked out by the urgent crisis-level emergencies that…

HAD

… to be dealt with…

NOW!

I sighed, and started to gather my stuff, ready to split until Gary had attended to all of this mayhem.

Instead, he held up his hand… shushed everyone… and gently ushered the secretaries AND his red-headed girlfriend (notorious for getting her way) out the door…Continue Reading

Yes, No.

Tuesday, 7:35pm
Reno, NV
No no, no, no no no noooo no, no, no, no, no no no no!” (The Human Beinz, Nobody But Me, circa 1968)

Howdy…

Well, that was a nice virtual brawl in the comments section, wasn’t it.

We do have a winner, whom I shall reveal in a bit here.

First, though, let’s get straight on the answer to the Quiz question:  What is the “Magic Word” that can work wonders for your productivity?

There were a lot of great answers.  Quite a few answers that totally sucked.  And a bunch of awesome critical thinking on the subject, which of course was the goal of the quiz.  I think Lisa Wagner wins the “Most Creative Answer” category, hands down, with her “strong coffee” response.

Damn hard to argue against strong coffee being an productivity enhancer.  But that wasn’t the correct answer.

Those of you who perused the comment threads already know there were a couple of flurries down the “focus”, “clarity” and “movement” rabbit holes.  These are not bad guesses.

But they miss an important rule of being productive:  How does your theory play out in real life?

I have a personal vendetta against success-oriented theories that are, when put to the test, complete bullshit.  This includesContinue Reading

[Quiz] The Magic Word That Solves Productivity Problems

Thursday, 8:54pm
Reno, NV
I’m worth a million in prizes… yeah, I’m through sleeping on the sidewalk…” (Iggy Pop, Lust For Life)

Howdy…

Let’s do a quiz, what d’ya say?

Winner gets a prize.

Here’s the lead-in to the question: Over the past week, I’ve done a number of sizzling teleseminars with such luminous marketing stars as Rich Schefren, Melanie Benson-Strick, Christina Hills, and Lisa Wagner (with another one hosted by Gary Halbert’s sons coming up in a few days)…

… all focused on the “solve your biggest business problem right freakin’ NOW” attitude that saturates the upcoming Action Seminar we’re hosting.  (San Diego, February 25-26, click here for info.)

To get the ball rolling in these teleseminars, everyone emailed their list and requested folks to send in the BIG problems that keep them up at night.

So, you know, we could fix those problems, right then and there on the call.

Speed Hot Seats, we call it.  You bring the mess, we bring the mojo to make it right (and get you back in the saddle, in the right groove to get you moving toward your goals again).

These teleseminars rocked.  Totally awesome, and I hope you had a chance to hear at least one of them.

It’s always a blast to witness how fast, and how thoroughly the toughest problems you believe are holding you back… can quickly be deconstructed, clarified, de-mystified, and solved (with specific actionable steps that can be taken right away).  No theory.  Just hard-core business savvy, applied to the wound directly.

What’s this got to do with our quiz?

Well, I’ll tell you.Continue Reading

The Rest Of Your Freakin’ Life, Redux

Thursday, 2:39pm
Reno, NV
Hey, you bastards, I’m still here!” (Steve McQueen as Papillon, floating away to freedom…)

Howdy…

I’m re-publishing, below, a portion of one of the more influential posts I’ve ever put on this blog.

It’s just a slightly tweaked way of looking at the best way to start your new year… but that tweak makes all the difference in the world.  I’ve heard from many folks that this particular technique finally helped them get a perspective on where they’re at, where they’re going…

… and why they care about getting there.

Most goal-setting tactics, I’ve found, are useless.  Worst among them is the traditional New Year’s resolutions (which seldom last through January).

This is something I’ve used, very successfully, for decades… to reach goals, to clarify the direction of my life, and to change habits.  I first shared it in the old Rant newsletter a few years back, and I’ve hauled it out here in the blog on a regular basis.  It’s timeless shit.

Here’s the relevant part of the post:Continue Reading

How To Create Your Own Damn Turning Point

Sunday, 1:01pm
Tampa, FL
Won’t you get hip to this timely tip, and take that California trip…” (“Route 66″, Bobby Troup)

Howdy…

I asked our old pal Kevin Rogers to guest post here, while I’m off galavanting around the west coast on biz trips.  (First stop: San Francisco, for the quarterly meeting of our super-awesome Platinum Mastermind group.)

I laughed reading this post.  There are excellent lessons for everyone below (especially if you’re struggling to find your footing in this current economic turmoil)…

… and I just want to be clear, up front, about one crucial detail:  There is a HUGE difference between making yourself useful (after doing the necessary preparations)…

… and just being a lazy-ass stalker looking for a handout.  I met my own primary mentor, Gary Halbert, by slowly proving myself through actions.  I never asked for anything, and never pretended to be anything I wasn’t.

Most of the time, the difference between a life frozen in place… and a life that roars along in the fast lane… turns on a single moment where you realize “Hey, I can DO this”.

And that moment usually comes from discovering information, or advice, that you couldn’t quite piece together on your own.

This is where teachers come in.

This is where taking that critical action-step of reaching out and grasping opportunity is the order of the day.

Okay, enough preamble.  Here’s Kevin:

Hi.  Kevin Rogers here.

Since the head honcho is away this week and asked me to fill in (always a humbling honor), I thought I’d share the story of how I was able to “weasel my way” into John’s world…

… all the way from being a guy he’d barely noticed writing about him on marketing forums… to eventually becoming a trusted insider (and even working alongside him as his go-to-writer).

There’s a huge lesson in here anyone can use to skip several rungs up the ladder of marketing hierarchy and claim your seat at the royal feast of the clued-in and well-connected.

This lesson is based on an old philosophy that says: In order to achieve your goals, choose someone who has already achieved those goals and model their thinking.

This story backs up that theory, with two small addendums:

1. Modeling your subject’s thinking isn’t as simple as reading a biography or daydreaming about how they might react in a certain situation… but rather, getting into a room with them to find out what truly makes them tick.  And…

2. When it comes to scoring a meeting with your subject… it’s probably going to require you to swallow your fears to make it happen.

Here’s the story: Continue Reading

Top 10 Secrets To Make 2011 Your Best Year Ever (All Of Which You’re Currently Ignoring Or Screwing Up)

Thursday, 4:51pm
Reno, NV
“I’ll have what she’s having…” (When Harry Met Sally)

Howdy…

I figured I’d end the year in a ball of fire, and just lay it out for you here.

If you tried, really really hard, and weren’t successful last year…

… it was probably mostly your own damn fault.

Yeah, sure, the economy sucked, politicians were mean, your prospects are all screamin’ idiots, and God had it out for you.  All totally excellent excuses for having a crummy bottom line again.

It’s not your fault.  It can’t be your fault.  That… that’s just…

… that’s just completely unacceptable that it might be your fault.

And, hey, maybe you did piss off the universe, and spooky forces beyond your control mucked things up so you had a bad year.

I believe you.  I really do.

However…

After you’ve been around the block a few times in life, you start to notice some very interesting things about success.

And the big realization, I’d have to say, is that the idea that success is somehow magically bestowed on people in a spontaneous burst of luck and being in the right place/right time…

… is just bullshit.Continue Reading


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These testimonials and case studies do not represent typical or average results. Most customers do not contact me or offer share to their results, nor are they required or expected to. Therefore, I have no way to determine what typical or average results might have been.

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