Off Again

In my ongoing quest to speak at a seminar in every city that scores a spot on the colored weather map in USA Today, I am boarding another jet Thursday.

Next stop: Miami. Our own little third-world enclave, yet you don’t need a passport!

I’ve spent a lot of time in Florida over the years. Halbert moved to the Keys, then to Miami during the time I was working with him, and I racked up impressive air-miles going back and forth. See, I am a west coast boy through and through, and dislike humidity. So I always returned as soon as I could.

The nudity on South Beach was fun, of course.

But the humidity kills me. I live in the high desert, where we maybe get up to 20% moisture in the summer (and you get a static shock every time you touch the car door), on purpose. I like dry.

Not many icky bugs in the high desert, either. Fleas can’t live here. The crawly things you do come across are not slimy, and bloodsuckers are rare. Rattlers mostly keep their distance.

In Florida, you’re assigned a mosquito nest when you arrive. (“Here, this is yours — enjoy the swelling!”) And I don’t even wanna know what those wet, finger-sized monsters were that crawled into my shoe the last time I forgot to never leave anything on the floor overnight.


Plus, the sun is supposed to SET over the ocean, not rise over it. They got it completely backwards on the east coast. And those “waves”. Gimme a break.

Still, heading back to Miami is always good for a few laughs. Halbert’s holding a semiar — also good for more stories (and potentially an entire Rant). We will see what happens this time. The word “unpredictable” does not even begin to describe a typical Halbert event.

Wish me luck.

I’m gone until Sunday, and then turn around and fly down to Sin City for another seminar — this time, one of Carl Galletti’s big shindigs. That, too, should be eventful and fun.

So I’m gonna get a well-rounded look — again — at a section of American life few people ever see in the heartland.

Miami, where last visit I couldn’t buy a bagel in the airport because I didn’t speak the language. (What’s “bagel” in Spanish, anyway?)

And Las Vegas, where last visit the taxi driver did a forty minute hard sell on a hooker he was “representing”. I passed, but thoroughly enjoyed the earthy sales pitch.

Anyway, I’ll be out for the next 10 days or so. Be sure to check in after that, to get your fix.

Don’t have any wild parties while I’m gone, and make sure you let the cat in at night.

John Carlton

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"11 Really Stupid Blunders You're Making With Your Biz & Career Right Now."

  • Marc says:


    Three questions:

    1. Why do ALL the copywriter/instructors/seminar providers on the Web say they’re number 1? You can’t ALL be #1…someone has to be lowly #2.

    2. If freelance copywriting is such a great business in itself (i.e., writing copy for others), why do all of the copywriter instructors seem to spend so much energy promoting/teaching courses to sell to non-copywriters? You would think it would be far more productive, time-wise, to write some successful promotions for companies out there and earn residuals…in other words, put your money (energy, time) where your mouths are. The money is clearly in the courses, not in the copywriting itself, or you all wouldn’t be spending so much energy promoting/teaching the courses. The world is awash in bad copywriting, so I’m confident you could find plenty of business outside of promoting your courses.

    The way copywriting courses are promoted now all over the web now, it’s really starting to make copywriters look bad. I swear, there must be 50 separate copywriting courses out there, and every one of them is the best damn course ever invented (and has the testimonials to prove it!) Of course, you and I know that they pretty much all promote the same “system” for DR copywriting used for the last 100 years. Very few new “inventions” in copywriting have been made by these experts…they’re all copying each other and the masters before them.

    The sheer volume of the online self-promotion, and the fact that all the ads look pretty much the same, reduces the effectiveness. It has begun to look more like a “scam” to average folks. As a result, eventually, response rates will decline.

    Personally, I’m just sticking with books by the masters, with an occasional outside critique of my work by other copywriters. That’s a better use of my $497, $24,999 or whatever.

  • Mark Landstrom says:

    John Carlton is one the FEW world-class copywriters that will get on the phone and give you “up-close and personal” advice, help and fixes for your copywriting on the fly. Anytime I get “stuck” I can go back to his courses and the goods are there. They are worth every penny you pay for them and he delivers…it’s complete tool of copywriters! I’ve bought other courses but John’s always sits open when I’m working a job. It cuts to the bone, gets my brain working and saved me a lot of “all-nighters”.
    Mark Landstrom
    Landstrom Marketing

  • ken oneill says:

    if the masters who wrote the books your learn from .where alive today they would probably have a course of there own on the net . copywirters putting out courses serves two purposes . it teaches people about copywriting . and in many cases when faced with the actually challenge of writing their own copy a person will turn to someone they bought a course from .

    there are plenty of bad copywriters out there . not hard to find … like their are plaenty of bad advertising agencies out there .

    the master writing in those old books didn’t have a fiftieth of the message clutter there is today . so if you don’t learn from those today who are getting through and teaching people how .. that is your choice .

    i personally would rather have fifty choices of great copywriters out there so i can learn from those with similaer personalities .


  • Tina Lorenz says:

    OK Marc…fair warning.

    This is going to be a long post. That is, once
    I stop sputtering in incredulity. Because you are
    so far off track, it isn’t even funny.

    Why attend a seminar?

    Your post is yet another example of massive ignorance when it comes to what it takes to write compelling copy. And besides that, a truly smart marketer is someone who knows an opportunity when it hits them between the eyes…let alone bites them on the ass.

    Geea, that chip on your shoulder must make it damn hard to keep your balance in life, let alone learn anything.

    Sure, there’s a ton of copywriting wannabe’s who trumpet their claims to the heavens. But I’m not posting (or reading) their blogs. I’m here. Why?

    Because John Carlton backs up everything he claims, delivering the goods over and over again.
    He not only talks the talk…he walks it. And in fine style I might add!

    Matter of fact, he is largely the reason I made tracks to Miami last week. Just to have another opportunity to learn from the master, rummage through his incredibly brilliant brain, and raise the bar for my own writing in the process.

    You see, I speak from personal experience. Using techniques that John freely shares, I’m scampering up the ladder of success with my copywriting. To the tune of $40,000 in the past 3 weeks by the way.

    Believe me, on Saturday I was first in line to sign up for John’s personal coaching. Because besides my own modest success, I’ve seen the difference it’s made for my buddy Harlan Kilstein. With John’s personal tutelage, Harlan hit $300K his first year in copywriting.

    Not bad for a beginner.

    I count myself as extremely blessed…kissed by good fortune…high-fived by Lady Luck…just to have the opportunity to learn from John.

    You’ve obviously never spent even five minutes getting to know him.

    Because one of the major differences between John and a passle of self-proclaimed copywriting gurus is that John truly cares!

    He didn’t come by his “Carlton the Destroyer” critiquing reputation by packing as many students as he can into his coaching program. No.

    He limits how many students he will take, because he’s as tough a task master on himself as he is on the rest of us. And he’s not about to settle for less then 110% from anyone he works with.

    The reason he’s at the seminars is to give eager
    students like me, the chance to achieve their dreams. Because he truly believes in giving back to a universe that has smiled on him.

    But you know…it’s probably good that you don’t bother with any of these seminars. Stay home. Read a book. And leave a chair for someone who truly values and appreciates what John has to share.

  • RE: Copywriting Seminars says:

    The real benefit of a copywriting seminar is to be around people that share your enthusiasm and passion.

    It’s a great learning experience.

    And don’t forget – MANY copywriters have picked up life-long
    clients by simply showing them their portfolio and sample ads.

    People who hire copywriters tend to hang out at copywriting seminars because they need responsive copy. They are looking for new talent… so be that person!

    If you prefer not to fly but want to know some lethal copywriting techniques I’d suggest Shaune Clarke’s coaching it is the best I’ve been through.


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