Shifting Your Mindset to Become
A Six-Figure Copywriter
An Interview With Julie Eason
Another Incredible “Authentic Copy” Success Story!
Julie started with me as an Authentic Copy 1.0 student. She has now gone on to run her own extremely successful publishing business.
To hear more about Julie’s incredible journey and discover how she now charges tens of thousands of dollars for her work, listen to the interview below.
Alongside her publishing business – THANET HOUSE BOOKS, Julie has recently released her own book entitled:
The Work-At-Home Success Guide: How to Make More Money with Freelance, Telecommuting, and Remote Working Jobs.
This is long! If you’re in a hurry …
you can read the full transcript here:
Tina: This is Tina, and I’m so happy you’re joining me today. I’m here with my friend and colleague, and I’ll tell you about the other part in a minute, but Julie Anne Eason. Hi, Julie.
Tina: I’m so happy that you’ve made time for me. Julie has a publishing company called Thanet Publishing. Am I getting it right? I don’t want to mess this up.
Julie: Thanet House Publishing, pretty close.
Tina: She’s been working in the world of writing for I think over thirty years. Is it thirty?
Julie: Really long time, yeah.
Tina: So you and I both have the distinction of not being 20-year-old Millennials online, so we have tons of experience.
Julie: I have children who are 20-year-old Millennials.
Tina: And she started writing for newspapers, for small money I think, going to the meetings, school board meetings and writing articles, and Julie, you’ve been down the same road that a lot of we, as freelancers, have been on where you have the ups and downs and kind of the wobbles with how you think about what you’ll be able to get and all that and so – with freelancing. But that brought you to—shameless plug—Julie’s new book.
Julie: Not shameless at all. Plug away.
Tina: How to Make More Money – The Work-At-Home Success Guide: How to Make More Money with Freelance, Telecommuting, and Remote Working Jobs, which is –I love it and I got it. You should get it, too. This just came out on Amazon, right? This is brand new.
Julie: Yeah. I don’t even have a copy. It’s my book, and I don’t have a copy.
Tina: I had connections with Amazon, and I’ve actually started reading it, and I especially like the chapter where you talk about the difference between being an entrepreneur, being a freelancer or working remotely, and so super good book. Be sure you get it, so shameless plug. But that – and your own publishing house published this, right? Your first book that your own publishing house has published, so that’s awesome. Congratulations.
Julie: Thank you.
WHY You Should Learn Copywriting With Authentic Copy
Tina: The other thing that people may not realize, and I just call you Julie. Do you prefer to be called Julie Anne?
Julie: No, that’s a funny story. Everybody asks me that. Julie Anne – there was a Julie Anne Eason – when I was in journalism, and I was writing for magazines. There was a Julie Anne Eason who was already established. Or no, there was a Julie who was already established, and this is before there was internet. This is before – everyone went –
Tina: I remember those days.
Julie: Do you have the email, is what everyone would ask. And so – which is hilarious, but so I just put Julie Anne to differentiate myself, but Julie is fine.
Tina: Okay, cool, because I always called you Julie. So – but Julie’s other kind of secret that a lot of people may not realize is you’ve ghostwritten books for a lot, a lot, a lot of big-deal entrepreneurs and influencers, and I’m going to do another little shameless plug because you actually worked with Russell Brunson to write DotCom Secrets, Expert Secrets, and you’re working with the fabulous Alex Charfen right now to write his new book that I don’t know the name of it and will soon be revealed I’m sure.
Julie: We have actually a whole line of books he’s coming.
Tina: And that’s – so it’s just super awesome, and I’m just so proud of you because the other part of our relationship is Julie learned copywriting from me in Authentic Copy 1.0, which, oh my gosh, I think it’s been like ten years, something like that.
Julie: At least. I was trying to think how long ago it was. I’m like, I don’t even remember. It’s like a whole other –
Tina: Another life.
Julie: A whole other millennial. I don’t even know how long. It was a long time ago. Let’s just say it was 1.0.
Tina: Okay, it’s 1.0, and that was actually done as a live event in Tucson. Ironically, I now live in Tucson part-time as well, but at that point I just loved Tucson, so we had the event there. And I just wanted to talk to you a little bit about how the copywriting marketing foundation, how that led you to the fabulous level that you’ve achieved now because I think a lot of people don’t realize how foundational copywriting really is. And I didn’t even know what it was until I was past 50. I was actually past 50 years old before I even knew what copywriters did, and when I read about it online, I just read an article. It just kind of lit me up, like I can do this. I can do this.
And so I just jumped in, and I knew nothing about being online. I’d never been on the internet. I’d never been paid to write anything in my life, and on my side of the story, I went to over six figures in the first year. Now, you and I both know that that’s kind of unusual actually, but you can make a great living as a copywriter, and foundationally it can lead you to other things. It just starts to open doors, and maybe – what do you think, Julie? I think it almost was like it kind of activates a different part of your mind or your mindset about what’s possible for you when you start working in copywriting and marketing and starts opening doors to other things you could do with that skill. What do you think?
Julie Says “Everybody Should
Freaking Learn Copywriting”
Julie: Whether – so I think whether or not you ever want to be a copywriter, everybody should freaking learn copywriting because – not because you’re learning how to write, but you’re learning how to persuade. You’re learning how to be succinct and direct to the point. You’re learning – most importantly, and I have to correct people about, this all the time, and it doesn’t matter if they’re web designers or copywriters or they’re authors. It doesn’t matter what they’re doing. Any time they’re putting a piece of communication out there our natural human instinct is to put out what’s about us first. So – and I just did this yesterday for one of my authors who put up a landing page for a retreat she’s doing, and she had the price right at the top. And I’m like – I said it’s about them, not about you. That is the biggest, biggest thing that you can ever take away from copywriting. I learned it’s not about you; it’s about them. Put their shit first – sorry. Put their stuff first.
Tina: It’s all right.
Julie: You have to make it about them, and you put it – and the whole thing with copywriting, and it doesn’t matter if you’re learning it to help your own business or whether you’re learning it to become a copywriter professionally or you’re learning it for – just because it’s a cool thing to learn. I mean it’s so valuable because when you’re in the mindset of who is reading this and understand the fact that they are naturally concerned about themselves first just like you are, when you understand that and you can put their needs first, their problems first, their pains first, their solutions first, and you do that, and then you say I can offer this solution or this client can offer this solution, you’re done, like sold. Sign me up. Take my money.
That’s – that is the foundation of business I think, and I think that it’s honestly like so important to learn that even if you’re – you never want to be a copywriter, but yes, being – I mean copywriting led me to a lot of different things, and it was because it was the last day of your seminar, and it literally – you said, oh, and by the way, there’s other things you can do with this. You literally said, “by the way, you can do affiliate marketing, and I had never heard that word before, and I was like, well, what’s that? And I remember Pam Marshall and Elizabeth Purvis and everybody, we were all kind of like, what’s that? And so you explained it, and we were all like, well, screw writing for clients. Let’s just do this cool thing.
And so I know that a bunch of us in that class have gone on to create businesses that have nothing to do with copywriting, but the copywriting supported it beyond our wildest dreams. I couldn’t be where I am without it, and I did – I was a professional copywriter for a very long time. That’s how I ended up writing for all of these amazing people is I was a copywriter, and all my clients were like, so can you write a book? And I’m like, yes, yes I can. I can write a book, and I had never written a book. I didn’t know if I – you always say – this is another thing that you always said, Tina, was you say yes, and then you figure it out.
Tina: Exactly. I say stay one or two steps ahead of your client.
Julie: Right, and that’s not – I mean that sounds bad. It sounds misleading and deceiving, but the truth is you do know how to do things, and you can figure it out, and if you know how to write a sales letter, then you can write a book. It’s okay. And then the next question was, well, can you write it in a week? And I’m like, yes, sure. I can write a book in a – and I did because I didn’t know that I couldn’t, and I didn’t have that in my brain.
Julie says “The First Thing
You Have to Learn is Mindset”
Tina: That’s the other thing. One of the things you’ve said to me is that when you first were learning from me, there was one aspect that you were kind of like, what? What’s this all about? So what was that? That something –
Julie: Oh my gosh, oh my gosh. So the word, mindset, is thrown around like Cheerios. Nowadays, it’s like, whatever, it’s mindset this and mindset that. I had never heard that word when I took that class, and you led with it, and that was the first. You were like, the first thing you have to learn is mindset. You have to understand that you are abundant, and you can make all this money, and you might – I was making $25 an article and spending four hours doing it including sitting in an incredibly boring meeting and taking notes and then writing it and everything. And at that time, that was good for me because all I wanted was $100 a month so I could buy diapers for my kids.
How Tina Got Julie to a 7-figure Mindset
But mindset can shift you into the next level and the next level and the next level, and you have to understand what’s possible and that you have every expectation of getting there. And so I had never heard the word mindset, and now it’s so common. There’s a million books on it, but back – I don’t – this is how long ago it was. The secret hadn’t been published. Nobody was talking about this stuff. It was all underground woo-woo stuff that – I don’t even know if the woo-woo people had figured it out yet. It was – and so we just – I took it in even though I didn’t believe in it, and I was like, eh, I don’t know what the heck this is, but Tina’s teaching it so whatever. But I still absorbed it, and it really did change and shift things in me so that I was able to have the confidence to charge more and get more and get to that six-figure level, and I’m almost to seven-figure level now, so it’s like – it’s amazing.
Tina: That light around your head right now, and you were kidding that it was a little angelic, so maybe we should have a little angelic chord because that’s how real it is. And the mindset piece really is super important, and I ask people that I’m teaching, just keep an open mind. Give it a try. It doesn’t cost anything to try this.
Julie: Right, right. You don’t have to do anything. All you’re doing is shifting your brain. Like, oh yeah, I can be a six-figure writer, no worries. Or, heck, even a – $50,000 for most writers, that’s the dream. If they could make $50,000 a year, that’s amazing. I mean that’s what I charge for one book now.
Tina: Exactly. Did everybody hear that? Julie gets $50,000 for one book, and it does not take you a year to write it, does it, Julie?
Julie: No, and it’s fun, and it’s like I get to work with the most amazing people, and I get to help them develop their ideas, and I get to get their courses for free. That was amazing!
Tina: Oh, that’s really is amazing. Well, so let’s stop here just for a second because when you went through the mindset and you were – at that point, you were still doing – you were copywriting. You were doing copywriting, so what happened to what you were charging after you went through the training with me? What happened – what you were charging for copywriting, where did you go, from where to where?
Julie: So it was an interesting time in the world because the internet was just sort of leveling out. It wasn’t the Wild West, but it was not really like passé. I mean it was just like this weird place, and so I was like, well, I could write websites, and that’s a thing, and I could – I charged a couple hundred dollars for a website, and then I started charging a couple hundred dollars for a page on a website. It just – as things have evolved, at the time, there were not as many copywriters as there are now, and so we could charge higher prices.
But I also was like, people wanted – a lot of businesses wanted offline stuff. They wanted press releases, and they wanted brochures and things like that, and I’m – nowadays, those are like, nobody even – who does that anymore? But back then, it was like, well, I can do all these things, and this is really cool. And I shifted a little bit at a time. It was not overnight. It wasn’t like I went from writing for $25 to writing for $50,000. I mean it’s been twenty years to get to that point, but that – but it was all my confidence level. It was all how much I believed in myself and how much I knew the value of what I was providing was going to bring to that client.
How Julie Made $10,000 in THREE days!
So what – the biggest shift I had, one time I – this is the first time I charged five figures for one piece of writing. I was like – and the reason I did it is because I didn’t need the work. In my head, I already had a gig I had just – I had just closed a deal with somebody literally an hour before I talked to this guy. And I was like, all right, I’m going to make great money on that project. What’s really funny is that project evaporated. I never even did that project. It just went away, but I – in my mind when I was talking to the upcoming client during that call, he had a software that he was selling for $100,000 for one shot, and so we went through, and we were talking about all kinds of things, and I was saying – I guess I was saying all the right things. And he asked me how much I charge, and I said, $10,000 to write a sales letter, which ended up being twenty-six pages, but we didn’t have a page count or anything like that. I just said $10,000, and he said, good, done. I’ll write you a check, which freaked me out because I was like, oh my God. I just sold $10,000 – and it literally took me three days to write. My husband thought I was stealing.
Tina: That’s the part –
Julie: You just spent three days writing, and you made $10,000. That’s theft. And I’m like, no, it’s not. It’s normal for copywriters. I swear to God.
Tina: And you know, someone may not do it that fast right out of the gate, but that actually is one of the things I teach in Authentic Copy 2.0 is that it’s kind of like a little bit of a secret that you can actually work part time and make a very, very good income because –
Julie: Yeah, very good money.
Tina: – as you get the skills, and I know you’re talking about a lot of different elements of copy, but basically if we start with the opt-in, which is where – the page where someone can sign up, put their email address in; the sales letter, which is the biggest part of that project; and the auto-responders, which are the email sequences that are a followup of that, you can make a full-body, marketing project out of that just learning those things.
So a person doesn’t have to come into copywriting, which I certainly didn’t, knowing all these other things about online marketing. You learn as you go. You continue to build, but you have that really solid foundation for what you start with, and today’s – even today’s pricing I think it’s very reasonable for a brand new copywriter who has that skill and has someone that can teach them that to be able to get from $3500 to $4000 for a project like that, and that’s at the low end. Would you agree with that assessment, Julie?
Julie: Absolutely, absolutely. And so here’s the thing, though. You have to have the confidence that you can do it and that you can handle a client, and so you might not charge that to start with, but you can start where you’re comfortable, where it’s just pushing your edge a little bit, but you’re comfortable, and you’re sure you can do it and everything. And then go and the next time charge a little bit more. Charge a little bit more.
But – and you’re going to bump up against a level where you’re – like I did. I was like, well, I’m going to charge $100,000 for this, and then I went – nobody was taking it, so I was like, okay, well, maybe that’s a sweet spot, and I should just bring it down a little bit. But you don’t know where your limit is, and there is no limit, but where your upper level is for that particular niche until you push up against it and try it.
Be a Freelance Copywriter
and Work From Anywhere
Tina: Well, the other awesome thing is you can do this from anywhere. So I mean I literally teach exactly what I’ve done, so I’ve lived in Mexico for two years. I have a big mobile office that’s gotten more elaborate over the years. Now, I have a 45-foot built on a Freightliner, heavy duty chassis, so it looks like a semi as my mobile office, so I have a really beautiful piece of property in Tucson. I’ve done an event in Maine as well. But you can work from anywhere. As long as you have internet, a computer, cell phone, good to go.
Julie: And I’ll tell you what, you don’t even need that. Let me show you this cool little thing. Where is it? This is the coolest thing ever and –
Tina: There she goes.
Julie: My kids learned how to type on this.
Tina: Oh my gosh. What is that?
Julie: It’s called an Alphasmart Neo. It is $35, and it runs for a year on four AA batteries, and it’s basically – it’s a word processor. There’s no distractions. There’s no internet. There’s no nothing. You just type, and it saves it, and then you can plug it in and upload it to your computer. But high-level Stephen King level fiction writers are using this because –
Tina: Oh my gosh. That’s a really good tip right there, folks.
Julie: I don’t like taking my computer on the beach or anything because it gets sand in it and everything, but this thing, you can drop this in the bottom of the ocean, and it will be fine. I mean seriously.
Tina: Awesome. That’s a great tip, Julie. Thank you.
Julie: I freaking love this thing.
Tina: Look, people, you can stick with a $35 piece of equipment.
Julie: $35. I mean you need to be able to talk to your clients. You need a phone, and you need to be able to use the internet, but you don’t even need that to write.
Tina: But that $10,000 project you spoke of, you literally went from more like – were you in the few hundred dollar range, and you went from that to $10,000?
Julie: I was in the almost $1000. Like I would – if it was a sales letter, I’d be writing $1000, but – and I think I did for that. I think I did throw in some auto-responders. It was a long time ago. The key was that in my brain I didn’t need the money, so I didn’t care whether he said yes or no, and then I started using that all the time. I was like, I do not need this client. If they want me, great. If they don’t, that’s fine, too. I am not attached to the outcome of this conversation. I’m going to tell them what it is.
Tina: That’s a mindset thing. It’s a mindset thing. And right now, people listening might go, well, I really need the money. That’s why I’m looking for a way to work from home. But if –
Julie: You can’t think that.
Tina: I call it – one of the things I say is I am a money stretcher. I’m a money stretcher, and I have a funny story like that, too. We were – another custom RV we had before this one that was going to be the mobile office, and were at the facility where they would build them, the factory, we were talking about the order. We needed a certain amount for down payment, and I was sitting there, and I said to my husband, I have a call with a potential client right now. I’m going to go out – we had another RV at the time. I’m going to go out there and have the call, and I’ll be back with the down payment. That’s exactly what happened. I had the call with the client. Yep, got the deal.
Getting Paid In Advance
I think you kind of touched on something, too, that I teach. We get paid in advance. We get paid in advance for doing this.
Julie: That was a huge that you taught me.
Tina: And all that. It’s like you really can get paid in advance for doing the work.
Julie: Get paid first, and the reason – they’re like, but why? And you were like, well, because words, once you have seen them and taken them, you have the benefit.
Tina: That’s right. That’s our commodity. We can’t go repossess them. We can’t go pull them back or anything, and I’ve been at masterminds, not the type I’m in now, but in the past I’ve been to some events that – some masterminds with some other copywriters, and there was one there, a woman who was well known at the time for copywriting, and she was sitting there at this table going, I have – I can’t get the last $500 from my client. And first of all, her fees were incredibly low, which shocked me, and she wasn’t getting paid in advance, and she did not know how to get paid.
And so this is – we completely avoid that, and if you go at it – again, mindset comes into play here because if you’re just fully confident, and this is of course how I work, there’s no apology in your voice. There’s no question mark in your voice. There’s no running to explain why or anything like that. You say this is how I work. I book – my fees are paid in advance to book my time. This is what it is. This is how you can get it to me, and I don’t even take credit cards. It’s check or bank wire. And so –
Julie: Like going to McDonald’s or to anywhere that it’s a transaction, and so the McDonald’s guys don’t go, gosh, I really hope you like this burger.
Tina: Would you like those French fries to go?
Julie: No. It’s like that will be 25 bucks for this piece-of-crap burger, but it just – when you settle into this is just how it is, this is my price, take it or leave it, it’s okay if they leave it. And they might – a couple of them might leave, and that’s okay. The higher – honestly, the higher you charge, the better people you get, and then they totally get it. Of course we’re going to pay you in advance, of course.
Tina: I agree with that, and also the fact that you release those that are not a good fit. So this isn’t a case of I’ll take anybody that comes my way. Maybe at the very beginning you might do that a little more, like you’re just so excited to get started, but as you get more selective and you really are thinking about, first of all, we’re throwing around all these numbers and having a little laugh about some of that. But it’s actually a very serious aspect of they are investing in you. They’re trusting in you, and they’re going to make more money because of what you do for them.
Julie: They’re going to make more money because of the work you do. And so if they don’t hire you, they could miss out on that money.
Julie: And the longer they wait to hire anybody, the more money they’re missing out on because time goes by, and that’s one more day that they didn’t have their sales letter up. How much money is that costing them by not hiring somebody to write that up?
Tina: And I know you feel the same way I do, that part of that then, our responsibility, is to deliver the value, that we deliver the goods, that we actually come through. And they are – I mean literally when I called my course Authentic Copy – The Ultimate Guide to Million-Dollar Copywriting it’s because that’s what my clients make as well as me making an excellent income. Of course, they make multi-million dollars, just really huge amounts of money from the copy that I’ve written.
I have a webinar out there right now for a client that’s converting consistently, an evergreen webinar at 33%, and they are making millions of dollars. And so what you’re giving is – when you learn how to do this correctly, it’s such high value for the client, and that’s the other part. That’s our responsibility that it’s not just about us; it’s about them and serving them at the highest level. And I know that that’s how you function with what you do as well.
Julie: That’s a hang-up for students, though, is that for me, when I was like, oh, well, I understand the whole value equation and that they’re going to get more value from this, but when you start talking about split testing and conversation rates and things like that that we throw around all the time, I was hung up on the fact that I didn’t have proof. I couldn’t prove that they were going to make more money. I couldn’t prove – I didn’t have – Tina had these conversion rates, and they made this much money on this. Oh, this was a six-figure launch, and I wrote the emails or whatever. I didn’t have any of that, and so I – it really hung me up for a long time, and finally, I just decided I don’t care.
I know that my writing is good, and let me tell you, the writing now out in the business world is worse than it has ever been. They – there are more copywriters now, but there are more people calling themselves writers who have no business calling themselves writers. They are awful, and a lot of them are professionals writing for really big organizations, and they are horrendous. I can’t even believe the quality of writing right now, and it’s not just writing. It’s communication. And I don’t know if it’s a function of age, and I’m just a cranky old lady, but I just – I’m like, how is this even getting out into the world? This is terrible.
Julie Says – “Learn All the Things Tina Teaches”
And so I mean – and I’m hiring – I hire writers now because I have an agency in my publishing company. I can’t – I have a waiting list of authors waiting for me to write their books, and I can’t do it anymore, so I have a bunch of writers. And just trying to find writers who can write a book who understand and are at the level that I want, that’s hard, too. And so just understanding that you need to learn the system and learn how to write and put sentences together and be succinct and put benefits first and features second and all of the things that Tina teaches.
Just taking Tina’s course is going to put you so far ahead of all of these people who are like, oh, I can write, and I’ll charge nothing.
I mean that’s what people worry about. Oh, well, I have to go on Upwork and I have to compete against people who are in the Philippines who are writing for nothing. I’m like, you’re not competing with them. You’re competing with the people who are – you’re only competing with yourself is who you’re really competing with, but there are so many businesses out there, and they all desperately need help, and there’s more business out there than there will ever be writers. I mean you just – you have to go where the people are, and you have to learn the jargon, and you have to learn the persuasion.
Julie Says “When I Learned How to Copywrite from You
I Learned How to Sell Myself”
And when – the funny part is when I learned how to write, how to copywrite from you, I learned how to sell myself. I didn’t know how to sell myself. I didn’t know how to present what I did. My first copywriting was for me to get copywriting clients, and I mean that’s just literally what it was. I had to because I had to learn how to present my own stuff, and so even if you have your own business and you take a copywriting course, it’s going to help you because it’s going to make you a better writer for that business.
Tina: Oh, absolutely. I’m going to – I’m actually in Russell’s high-level 2CCX membership, and I help people in there. We kind of – there’s a lot of reciprocity, give and take. And so I’ll do Zoom calls with some of the people, and they’re just kind of looking at their stuff, and there’s a huge need for people to learn copywriting whether you’re a blogger, whether you’re already a high-level marketer, whether you’re just getting started, even writing a blog. What is the headline on your blog? What’s going to make people read?
I mean the whole purpose of the headline is to read the next line. Get them into what you have to say, and bring them into that and keep them in there with you. And having a call to action, what does that mean? What is it that we want them to do? And so even blogging, it’s more than just here’s what I had for breakfast. Here’s how cute my cat is, and here it’s snowing outside today. There has to be more – I call it like a marketing core that’s woven through everything, kind of this hidden core that, when you learn that foundational piece, and what you were saying about writing your own copy, that’s the toughest client ever. I always hear it.
Julie: You always think everything you do is terrible.
Tina: It’s like, oh geez. I don’t know. It’s like you have brain freeze when it comes to writing for yourself and you do it for everybody else kind of thing.
Julie: That’s – so that’s one niche that I found as I was – I literally had – I had to make a decision to stop copywriting, but I had – just before I did that, I was like, this is a sweet niche, and I really – I’m going to give it to you guys if anybody wants to grab this: writing bios for business people, 500 bucks. People paid it to me all day long. It’s like two or three paragraphs literally, but people cannot write about themselves. They have such a hard time writing about themselves. They will pay anybody to do a bio for them. They are like, please, God, just do it for me.
Tina: That’s another great tip, another great tip because like LinkedIn –
Tina: I had people in – that are already seven-and-eight-figure earners asking me to help them write their LinkedIn –
Julie: Their bio.
Tina: – profile.
Julie: Or their introductions for speaking or whatever. They don’t want to – they don’t know. They’re going to be like, oh, I went to this college, and I got this degree, and it’s boring as hell. I’m like, what do you want them to do when they’re done? Let’s put – I mean I’m thinking about it like a sales letter even though it’s a bio.
Julie: And I’m thinking like a sales letter, and they’re like, oh my gosh, this is awesome. I’m like, yes, 500 bucks, thank you. Put it away. Where’s the next one? And then – I mean LinkedIn, LinkedIn is millions and millions and millions of potential $500 bio gigs, and they’re – you can write them in an hour.
Tina: See, that’s easy math. When you say you can write them in an hour, $500 an hour.
Julie: That’s pretty good, right?
Tina: By learning copywriting, that’s what I really want people to understand that it’s like a gateway to so many other things that once your brain starts working that direction, you kind of put on that detective hat, that marketing mindset, when you start –
Julie: You’ve got to have marketing.
Hate the Hard Sell? Learn Smart Copywriting
Tina: So you really – you do have to have a connection to that and not feel like, oh, I’m afraid to sell. You don’t have to hard sell if you understand the art of copywriting and the right way. You don’t have to hard sell. It’s about relationship. It’s about a conversation. Robert Collier said that entering into the conversation that’s already going on in your prospect’s head. You’re coming into that realm with them and just talking to them, and so –
Julie: You can just talk to them.
Tina: Yeah, you have to be open to that, yeah, you actually are going to sell stuff, okay. It’s not a four-letter word, but it’s not freelance writing though either, and that’s the big difference. So many broke freelancer writers, well, I just love to write. I’ve had people say that to me. Don’t you just love to write? And sometimes it’s like, yeah, right. It’s like, uh, because there’s more to it than that if you want to actually make money with writing. So if you have an affinity for writing or feel like – I love words. I love words. I mean I do, and I love marketing, so hey, good combination, right?
Tina: But again, this is like – people talk about gateway drugs. Well, this is a gateway opportunity by learning copywriting that you can move into other realms. So for you – and that’s what’s funny about – because you like working with entrepreneurs with the books, and I’ve written sales letters that were fifty and sixty pages long.
Julie: That were books.
Tina: And it was. It was. These – it’s really writing with – again, there’s that hidden core, so it’s sort of like a really soft sales message that’s woven through the book basically. And so that skill of copywriting has taken you to getting $50,000 per book and more to the point where you have an agency and a publishing house.
Julie: And people don’t just want sales letters anymore. They want – either they want landing pages, which is a sales letter, or they want books, and most every – I have not met a single entrepreneur who didn’t either already have a book and hated it or wanted another one, or most of them have just never been able to write it themselves even when they’re good writers. Russell Brunson is a damn good writer. He’s an amazing writer, but he worked for nine years trying to write, and this is on my website.
Tina: Again, that’s when it’s your own stuff. See, when it’s your own stuff, it’s harder.
Julie: It’s not just that it was his own stuff, but he had to work through – so one of my superpowers is being able to take what you do and what you teach and distilling it into a framework and a message that actually sells what you do and makes it reading worthy. I’m not a publisher from a book – there’s publishers who are just business people, and they just want to take your money. You write the book, and it’s out there, and it’s done, and it’s fast and easy, and write a book in a box or whatever. That’s not me. I freaking love books. I collect them. I read them. I read two or three books a week. I like – I am a book person, and I always have been, and that’s why it was a natural fit for me to start writing books and then now to be publishing them because I care so much about these entrepreneurs and their messages that I want their books to be amazing.
Right now it’s – everybody has a book because it’s a business card. Your book is a business card. If you give someone a book, they’re not going to throw it away. If you give them a business card, they’re going to throw it away or they’re never going to look at it again. Even if they never read that book, that book will get passed around. It will get put on a bookshelf. People don’t – they’re trained from birth not to throw away books because they’re valuable, right? So – and everybody wants one, and they – most of them do not want what I offer, which is a whole high-level thing, like I’m going to get you into a bookstore kind of thing. They just want a book they can have on Amazon and that they can sell on their website and that they can use to give to clients or to potential clients.
So you writing that – I mean, at the – and let’s talk numbers here. At the very, very crap-ass, low-end of this, it’s $5,000. You’re writing a sales letter. You’re doing it hopefully a little more artfully than the hard-sell, direct-response sales letter, but it’s basically a sales persuasion piece, and they can figure out how to publish it, or if you’re really savvy, you can offer that as a big package and double your price. But there’s – a lot of them come to me. I had people come to me every single day going, can you just write an e-book? How much is it just to write an e-book? And they have this magic number of $5,000 in their head, and I’m like, no, that’s not what I do anymore, but there is a whole heck of a lot of writers who could do that if that was their niche.
Tina: Yeah, so somebody who is learning the copywriting can start thinking about, yeah, I’d like to do that. And when you were talking about publishing, the other thing I make clear is as the copywriter, you’re not responsible for the technology. You’re not responsible for images. You’re not building websites, any of that.
Julie: No, you’re not.
Tina: It’s all – you’re basically working with a Word document. That’s what you’re doing as a copywriter, and it’s up to the client to do the rest. Now, you said you could learn publishing and add that on, but you wouldn’t have to, and you could still –
Julie: You could partner with a publisher. Do you know how many publishers sell publishing contracts before the book is written? Russell Brunson had a publishing contract with Morgan James a really long time before he actually had a book, and I didn’t – I thought it was ridiculous, but apparently it happens all the time is for these hybrid publishers to sell a book package before the book is done, which is fine. There’s nothing wrong with it, but then they have to write the book, and oftentimes they find that that’s harder than they thought it was.
Tina: Well, and the other thing I wanted to make clear for people that are new to copywriting is when we talk about things called trip wires or an incentive to opt in, and so –
Julie: Lead magnets.
Tina: The lead magnet. A lot of times, these books are used specifically for that is to – is actually a client-generation kind of thing. It’s the way to get people to sign up for what you’re doing or get on your email list, and so the “book” again, and I’ve done some of these for my clients, it’s got a marketing message woven through it, but it’s giving good content and information for the person so they learn something. They get value from the book, but it’s also a marketing piece, so you can think of it like a fancy sales letter in a way, and I –
Julie: It’s easier to write long things than it is to write short things.
Keeping it Smooth
Tina: I’ve always said that short copy is harder than long copy because you don’t have the luxury of additional words. You have to fit it into a very small – the message has to have a high impact immediately. You don’t get to wander around with extra adjectives or side comments or anything, and so longer copy actually is easier to write, and it can be very conversational. That’s another little hint I give is I read everything I write aloud, and I talked to you about in the [indiscernible_00:34:18]. You hear it how – and you experience reading it. I actually still – I have a printer back here. I print everything out. And you might go, okay, but I print everything out because I want to see how it looks on the page. I read everything aloud, and if you stumble or you get messed up on the sentence, there’s something wrong, and so that’s a sign. Go back and smooth it out, and I literally do it with pen in hand. I’ll just make a mark in the margin and go back.
Julie: I’ve gotten to the point where I can do it now while I’m writing. It’s musicality.
Tina: And just stop and go back, and so I teach don’t worry about self-editing right out of the gate, but you get so that you just kind of do as you go, and sometimes I’ll have – I’ve had fifty-page sales letters. When I go back and look, I edited them something like fifty times, but it’s just small things. It might just be a word, a break in a paragraph or a sub-head, something like that. So I mean I’m sure we could talk about this all day because you and I both love this process.
Julie: I’m just a geek. I’m a word geek.
Tina: Me, too. And I also teach don’t use lazy words. Find more energized ways to say things. Don’t just fall back on how everybody else does it if you want to stand out so that it really feels compelling and makes you feel something. You need to feel something. John Carlton once told me that he would read his copy, sometimes it would bring him to tears, and I’ve actually had that experience where I read my own copy later, and I’ve got goosebumps. I’ve started to cry. And it’s like – because it could be for someone else’s product, but I’m feeling the feeling and the emotion and the momentum.
Julie: It’s empathy. It’s empathy, and you have to be able to convey empathy across the written word, across the page whether it’s a book or a brochure or a website. It doesn’t matter. You need to be able to understand what does that person – what are they feeling now, and what do they need to feel in order to move to the next step?
Tina: Exactly. Well, so the point here is copywriting is a bridge to – and it certainly has been for you. There’s someone else I talked that she has a contract where she’s not allowed to promote, but she actually became a book agent also. So I have several people that have gone kind of into the book world starting with copywriting, and so – and you’re just such a stellar example of that, and I’m so proud of what you’ve done. I feel like –
Julie: I am, too.
Authentic Copy 2.0 Can Change Your Life
Tina: I helped you get started. [laughs] And so I guess my – I’d like to conclude today with my last question for you would be anyone considering going into Authentic Copy 2.0, which now doesn’t have to be in person; it’s all online, and I’m going to be in a private Facebook group called The Authentic Copy Interactive where they can pick my brain every week. I’m going to show up live every week with them. What would you say to someone even thinking about doing that?
Julie: Just do it. Don’t think. Just do it. Look, I – when I – you said you can work from anywhere. I’ve always worked from home. I raised three kids doing this. I literally wanted to stay home with my children, drive them to school, now their friends, do all of the things that happened growing – with them growing up. I didn’t want to not be there, and this was the only thing I could do was write to make money. And so I just – I was a stay-at-home mom with three kids. My husband made okay money, but it was like I had never spent $1000 on a car let alone a freaking conference that I had to fly somewhere and stay in a resort, and it was completely outside my realm of reality to pay a crap-load of money to my brain at the time, and I think it was like 1500 or something. I don’t even remember what it was.
Tina: It was 2500.
Julie: It was a lot more than you’re charging now. That’s for damn sure.
Tina: $2500. It was 2500.
Julie: It was $2500. Like where did I come up with that money? I have no idea to this day. I was trying to think. Where did I come up with that money? It must have been a credit. I don’t know. I just decided I was going to do it, and I didn’t know how the kids were going to get taken care of because my husband worked during the day. I don’t even remember what we did with that. Probably my mom came up or something. I don’t know how I made it happen, but I did make it happen, and it’s because I was like, I can make more money doing this kind of writing than I can working for newspapers. I want to learn how to do it.
And so I didn’t worry too much about where the money came from. I just signed up, and then I figured it out. And so don’t let anything get in your way of learning this skill that can hold you in good stead for the rest of your life. You will never not know how to sell yourself. If you’re trying to get a job even, it helps you write a cover letter for a resume in a persuasive tone. You will never be stuck without the ability to take care of yourself and your family if you know how to copywrite. So learn the freaking skill.
Tina: And that is straight from Julie who is now getting $50,000 a book. So thank you so much for joining me today, Julie, and everyone can find you at thanethousepublishing.com. Is that correct?
Julie: Thanet House Publishing. Yep, and it’s in the book, and yeah, there’s – oh, and if you want to learn how to write books, there is – I have another book that they can get for free plus shipping. Actually, I don’t even know if that’s live anymore, but it’s called The Profitable Business Author, and that’s on Amazon as well, and you can go grab that. And that actually teaches you how I write a book.
Tina: Oh, awesome. I’ll take a look at that.
Julie: And so there you go.
Tina: Thanks so much for joining me today, Julie. Thank you.
Julie: You’re so welcome. Bye.
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