It gets worse…

One of the more useful phrases in a copywriting toolbox is…

“It gets worse.”

If you see any of my sales letters or videos, you’ll notice I use this phrase almost all the time.

Why is it so useful?

Think of your copy as an emotional rollercoaster ride.

Of course, you start off with something impressionable.

Something that gets their attention.

From there, where do you go?

Well, according to AIDA, the next thing to do is build some interest.

So how do you do that?

There are multiple ways. And after you’ve exhausted the interest building and BEFORE you start building desire, emotionally it’s time to drop the bomb:

“It gets worse.”

Done right, your reader’s heart drops and their eyes are riveted to whatever you have to say next.

This is exactly what you want.

And all you have to do, is make sure whatever you say next delivers on the implicit promise of it being really bad.

Now is there another way to use this phrase?

Yes and it’s even better. You can use it in your calls to action.

Next time you write a call to action, try this phrase:

“If You Don’t Do Anything, It Just Gets Worse.”

What you’re doing is anticipating them considering doing nothing.

They’re going down the road of ambivalence.

So you’ve got to shut that line of thinking down.

So you drop the bomb and reveal the consequences of doing nothing.

For instance:

“Please don’t ignore the subtle signs of diabetes. If you do, it just gets worse. You start to experience painful neuropathy… and foot ulcers… and if you really ignore it, you might have to someday amputate a foot or a leg…”

Now that’s a little over the top, but you get the idea.

“It gets worse” creates that emotional “Uh oh”… they’re waiting for the other foot to drop.

So try it next time and see what happens in terms of conversions.

And if you don’t, it just gets worse…


Talk soon,


#1 Thing You Need To Know About Your Customer

Are you an optimist?

Odds are, if you’re a marketer, you are.

If you’re not an optimist, you may not say you’re a pessimist, you’d say you were a realist.

And how did I know that?

Well, not because I’m a realist. 😉

But because after 15 years in the business, I can spot marketer a mile away.

I can spot a rookie marketer from a veteran, successful or not.

How can I do this?

The reason is I understand how marketers mentally make decisions.

This is the key that opens the lock in research–to learn how your market makes decisions.

Most copywriters don’t understand what research is.

They think it’s about learning information that may prove relevant in the sales letter. And yes, there is some of that.

Others think research is about finding the hook. And yes, that is true…

But if you don’t understand how your market makes decisions, these efforts will be fruitless.

Your first objective is to research how your customer makes decisions.

We’re looking for decisions about where they spend their time online.

We’re looking for what they focus their attention on.

We’re looking for buying criteria… what makes them buy in the market.


And that’s why I love reading the reviews at Amazon.

Because real customers tell you exactly what influenced their buying decision, as well as whether or not they like the product.

Sure, it takes time to read these.

But I find them fascinating, especially when I’m working on a new project.

And it’s worth it–especially if you don’t have a list you can survey.

But if you take nothing away from this email today, take away the idea that research is about discovering how people make decisions in the market.

Start there!

Good luck and talk soon,


What to do when your offer falls flat

It can be a frustrating experience.

That moment in time when you know your offer won’t land.

When your offer is weak.

When your offer looks like everybody else’s out there.

When your offer is a plain ol’ dud.

Maybe you thought you could just ride on somebody else’s coattails, and swipe what they’re doing.

I’ve done it, and sometimes it converts and sometimes it doesn’t. 

So I know that strategy can be risky.

But let’s say that for whatever the reason your offer falls flat.

How do you resuscitate it?

Almost every time I have an offer that doesn’t convert it’s usually because I’m playing too small.

I’m just not thinking big enough.

For instance, years ago, I wrote this fitness info-product offer for a guy who was a Navy Seal.

We thought just mentioning the words “by a Navy SEAL” was pretty compelling.

Surprise! Surprise! It was DOA. 

So whenever something like this happens, I do a mental post mortem.

And almost every time an offer falls flat, I conclude…

“Either I somehow missed the market, or I’m not thinking big enough. Maybe I need to think bigger.”

So I imagine what my offer would like if it was 5X better.

Then I ratchet up to 10X better. Doodling on paper as I refine it and make the better.

Then 100X better. (Which is more for a mental stretch of what’s possible.)

In other words, it’s time to be bold. To get bolder.

That’s what I did this with Navy Seal offer. I got really bold.

And I thought “Damn, I want to BE a Navy SEAL! Nah, what I really want is that ripped Navy SEAL body!”

(Which is weird for a Brit to say, but whatever.)

And I got excited when I came up with this headline:

“Claim Your Navy Seal Body Below”

And what do you know? That did the trick! The offer did exceedingly well.

So try it the next time your conversions are less than stellar.

What can you do to really knock it out of the park?

Because there are so many things you can do. Maybe someday, I’ll make a list.

But for now, be bold!

“Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it!”

Talk soon,


P.S. For inspiration, I often look at Eugene Schwartz headlines.

That man knew how to think big.

==> Pretty cool Eugene Schwartz PDF

Jason Capital

So I don’t know if I’ve ever shared this before but one of my clients is the dating guru, Jason Capital.

His enterprise probably grosses several million dollars a year. The majority of it from ClickBank offers.

I’ve worked with him since the beginning with his flagship program “Make Women Want You”.

Which 7 years later still continues to sell. (Yes, it is a ClickBank offer as well.)

Except for a brief period of time, I’ve written pretty much all his sales letters (everything except for his kick-ass daily emails and videos.)

So forever Jason has been wanting me to come to one of his events in the States and “schmooze” with his peoples.

Maybe do an off-the-cuff copywriting training for his high-ticket mastermind.

And forever, I’ve declined.

Between the jet lag, being away from my family and out of my element, as well as the frenetic environment, again, it just isn’t my cup of tea.

I must have turned him down at least 5, maybe 10 times.

But you gotta give it to him, the man is nothing if not relentless.

So a couple weeks ago, in the face of a first class, all expenses paid trip to Orange County, CA, land of beautiful people, I caved.

How could I say no?

And so I land in OC, and I set up shop in a 5-star hotel just outside Orange County Airport right next to Jason’s room.

And I have to admit…

The whole event was exhilarating.

Anyway, one of Jason’s associates is none other than Bedros Keuilian, the famous fitness business guru.

He was there doing a presentation.

Afterwards, I introduced myself to him because I was thinking about pitching an idea.

And once he heard my name he said…

“You’re Matt O’Connor, THE copywriter? You may not know this but you are very highly spoken of.”

And I was kinda aware because a few of Bedros’ clients are my ClickBank copywriting clients as well. 😉

Word gets around and like I said, it’s a small universe.

Anyway, here’s the upshot:

Remember that ClickBank Copywriting course I spoke of earlier?

Well, I’ve negotiated an agreement with ClickBank University to offer it exclusively on my Conversion Gods website along with the original copy and content.

We haven’t changed a thing.

There are 77 extremely good reasons you should have this course.

So if you have a desire to write winning ClickBank copy, if a Top 10 VSL or sales letter is your ultimate freedom-giving goal, I encourage you to snap it up while you can.

Yes, FOMO (fear of missing out) is alive and strong and you need to follow your gut and get it while you can.

–>HURRY: Get The ClickBank Official Copywriting Guide

You’ve got to appreciate, I truly am reluctant doing stuff like this.

Candidly? I feel like I’m ignoring my clients.

So I don’t know how much of it I can stand before I redirect my efforts.

But if you want to learn how to write wicked compelling ClickBank copy–the same copy that’s used in the coveted Top 10 of ClickBank’s marketplace–I strongly encourage you to get my guide now.

–>HURRY: Get The ClickBank Official Copywriting Guide

It’s a measly $17! Your latte habit probably costs more than that.

There’s no risk. ClickBank’s refund policy is in full force.

You have nothing to lose.

Go for it and thank you for being a part of my tribe.

Talk soon.

Nihil Obstat (“Let nothing stand in your way”),


P.S. If nothing else, check out the sales letter as a learning experience. A couple of the tactics we used tripled conversions.

–>HURRY: Get The ClickBank Official Copywriting Guide

Black Friday Promo Template

Today I saw all the retailers rolling out their holiday ads.

It inspired me to write this.

Be forewarned: You don’t have much time.

I encourage you to give serious consideration to conducting a Black Friday/Cyber Monday Sale.

NOW’S THE TIME to figure it out and get your copywriter to work.

To take best advantage, treat Black Friday as a true campaign. Not just one or two emails.

For instance, here’s one template I use:

1) During the week leading up to Thanksgiving, I’m dropping hints about a Black Friday sale.

Once a day, in every email we send out, I let them know.

2) Then Thanksgiving day and night, I’m giving people a serious heads up. Benefits and opportunity galore.

Yeah, two emails get sent on Thanksgiving.

3) Then on Black Friday, we start early. 6AM east coast time, we launch. Maybe even 5AM to beat the other marketers to the punch.

You should know, the offer should be pretty amazing. Like they’d have to be an idiot, not to take you up on it.

In other words, don’t be a Scrooge.

It also helps to engineer some scarcity into the offer. Some sort of an inventory count down.

“Only 3 left!”

Then another couple of emails alerting people to the status that day of the sale.

4) Then, for whatever the reason you want to give them, keep the momentum going.

Don’t shut the sale down until Sunday night. On Saturday and Sunday, send out two emails a day, morning and night.

I’d structure them as “updates.” Again, keep the scarcity going.

5) Then Sunday night close it all down. Tell them thanks for playing.

6) Then Monday, start it all up again. 🙂

This time with a DIFFERENT, possibly even better offer.

Note: Always keep the emails fresh and original. Don’t drone on, like some marketers do.

Put some creative muscle into it. They don’t have to be long, but they DO have to be different.

And don’t be boring.

Now, about your offer:

It should be an offer Walmart shoppers would be willing to throw hands for.

You know what I’m talking about.

It should be a steal.

Don’t be stingy. No, you won’t cannibalize your sales.

In fact, you’ll be seen in a very admirable light if you position your offer as such.

(I’ve seen examples where it could be the start of a funnel process.)

In the past, what works best are high ticket offers. Things the majority of your list couldn’t afford anyway.

Black Friday gives you a reason to slash prices–and you won’t look desperate. You’ll look like a hero.

Now, you can add caveats, like:

“This doesn’t including monthly webinars, or one-on-one coaching or email interaction. This is bare bones.”

You make the rules, whatever works. But that’s the template I’ve seen work over the past five years.

Get into the holiday spirit and err on being generous.

Try it and let me know how it works for for you.

Nihil Obstat (“Nothing stands in your way”),


I Eat What I Kill…

You’re an entrepreneur. Most probably an online entrepreneur.

Compelled to create. Compete. And dominate.

Or maybe just right now… survive.

It doesn’t matter.

You’re an entrepreneur. That’s just the way we’re built.

Based upon my experience, the majority of people don’t understand this drive. This ambition.

You do. Implicitly. Instinctively.

Let me guess. You wake up every morning and no matter what the status is of your bank account, you’re on fire about your latest project.

Just talking about it, lights you up like a roman candle.

The beauty about what we do is we can go from zero to not just having prototype, but to a full working site in just a few days.

With platforms like Shopify, ClickBank and WordPress, it’s getting easier and easier.

Facebook and Google plus all the other ad networks and traffic-getting strategies allow us to get our message in front of thousands, even millions of eyeballs.

But the fly in the ointment has always been… the copy.

If the copy doesn’t convert, all is for naught.

You see, unless you’re intimately familiar with the market and are able to write persuasively, the copy has always been the sticking point.

So here’s an idea:

Let me help you.

I’m not sure if I can, I’m not sure if I’m a fit, but I am open to having a conversation about it.

And one thing I am confident of is, you and I? We’re like-minded.

Like-minded in the sense we both have that “entrepreneurial fire in the belly.”

If we get together, I’ll focus on the copy and you can focus on the traffic and operational stuff.

You see, I’m not like other copywriters.

The majority freelance.

In other words, they trade dollars for hours. Or dollars for words.

There’s nothing wrong with that type of service. It’s just that personally I can’t wrap my head around being compensated just for writing words. There’s no inspiration in there for me to grab hold of.

I’m more like a bounty hunter. I prefer to get paid for RESULTS.

In commission sales, they have an interesting saying I think is particularly appropo:

“You eat what you kill.”

So when I write copy that converts? You eat and I eat.

Simple as that.

I like that. It’s fair. It’s fun collaborating. And it’s fulfilling.

And yes, it can be lucrative.

But we’ll never know unless we have a chat, will we?

What you should be really taking away from this email is I have the confidence that I can, that we can, get the job done.

Not because I’m so confident, not because I’ve done it  once or twice, but because I write winning high-converting copy consistently.

“It’s what I do.”

And of course, I can prove it.

None of this is to brag, mind you. It’s getting rarer and rarer but I’ve been humbled, too on occasion.

Just being straight about it.

My “learning experiences” would make any marketer or copywriter laugh their butt off.

Again, nobody bats 1000, but I can more than hold my own. And besides, even if I don’t knock it out of the park right away, we can always optimize our way to success.

That’s the beauty of online marketing, as you know.

But it all starts with one thing:

That fire in the belly.

That’s the key. That’s the secret sauce.

That’s what makes it all work.

I have it. Do you? If so, let’s talk —

Till next time,


Case Study: Dominating The Health Market With… Cookbooks?

Attention health and fitness marketers:

What if you had a simple go-to strategy to generate quality traffic and then monetize that traffic over and over and over again?

Because that’s EXACTLY what I want to share with you today–from one of the most popular health websites on the Internet.

As I write this, according to Alexa, this site is the 38,134 most visited website in the world.
paleohack2Translation? They get untold amounts of  traffic each day.

(Yes, I do see the chart and it does look like they’ve slacked off a bit for the holidays. But you’d have to admit, you and I would KILL for an Alexa rank of #38,000, wouldn’t we?)

That stated, being “king of the hill” traffic-wise
DOESN’T necessarily equal big money.

After all, you have to know WHAT TO DO with all that traffic.

So how does this popular health site generate its revenue? And what are their “under-the-hood strategies” you can apply to your own online health and fitness business?

In this special Conversion Gods report, you’ll discover:

  • The high volume super strategy that helps this health-site-that-cannot-be-named sell hundreds of mini-reports each day…
  • The subtle copywriting techniques that cause customers to snatch up simple PDFs like they are going out of style…
  • PLUS: the covert marketing plan that has enabled Paleo Hacks to amass a gargantuan list of buyers–at a time when many health businesses are struggling to entice new customers

You’ll get it all right here on this page.

How do I know
their secrets?

It’s not because I’ve studied them. Although I DO study what they do.

It’s because I’ve lived it. My team and I are the copywriters behind this popular health site’s mega-launches. (Can you tell we can’t mention them by name?)

We understand the weight loss, diet, alternative health, and supplement markets intimately.

“So why are you sharing your
secrets, Matt?” you may ask

Fair question.

Well, I can tell you it’s not to publicly gloat and beat our chests like other copywriters do. Our work (when you realize we wrote it) speaks for itself.

Nor do we need to prove how smart or sophisticated we are, how many marketing books we’ve read, or how many copywriting courses we’ve taken.

Again, when you’ve got the goods? None of that stuff matters.

What does matter however, is sincerely and without remuneration, helping your fellow marketer, your fellow copywriter.

Giving back, in other words.

And that’s exactly what I’m doing here.

Giving back. Paying it forward.

So enjoy. What you’re about to read are THE REAL SECRETS behind their strategy for monetizing traffic.

Once the lightbulb goes on, it should change your marketing/copywriting life.

The Lean, Mean
Marketing Machine…

Underneath a simple, stylish blog design, high quality content and thousands of eyeballs hitting the site each day is a lean, muscular marketing machine.

The strategy is simple:

Every single day, this ultra-popular health site
emails its readers and
makes them an offer.

Now, most people are too scared to sell something EVERY SINGLE DAY.

They fear they’ll annoy their list… they worry about being too pushy or salesy… they sweat bullets a subscriber may — gasp! — unsubscribe.

As a matter of fact, if you can offer great products that complement their interests? If you can deliver premium offers that people LOVE? The entire marketing process becomes a joy–TO THEM. And your product is seen as a blessing rather than a money grab.

This high-traffic health blog understands this. And they also know a day not selling is a day leaving untold amounts of money on the table.

Plus, there’s ONE THING they do better than most:

They Know Their Market

I know, I know. Your eyes just rolled, didn’t they?

How many times have we, as marketers, been told we must know our market?

However, just knowing your site’s demographics or how many visitors are looking at your sales pages or reading your emails just isn’t enough.

Believe me, it’s not enough to get the monetization job done.

To really get the highest conversions… to transform browsers into buyers… we must understand what makes them tick… what challenges they face… what keeps them wide awake at night.

Let’s take a look at one of our most successful campaigns to see how we zeroed in and nailed the target market.

What does this health site mainly sell? Cookbooks.

Regular old cookbooks.

Incredible, isn’t it? Despite the internet containing thousands of FREE diet recipes, people are all too happy to hand over money for a collection. Why? One word…


Rather than wade through recipe after recipe online, you can get them all together in one shiny, new PDF.

Of course, this is where the sales copy needs to work its magic.

How to make people pay
for FREE stuff…

Ok, now for the good stuff. The intel you’ve been waiting for.

There are 3 major components to the cookbook sales page puzzle:

1) The Story

2) Romance (yes, really!)

3) Killer emails

Let’s get started…

Component #1:
Stories Sell Cookbooks

While it may seem counter-intuitive for a cookbook, you ABSOLUTELY need some kind, any kind of a compelling story to suck people in emotionally. Yes–even when selling a mere cookbook!

It’s simply not enough to list recipes and expect people to buy–no matter how delicious sounding the meals.

First, figure out the thoughts, emotions, the conversation they are having in their own heads… and then meet them there.

What I like to do is hone in on a particular pain point for my prospects and build a story around that.

I’m always thinking…

What is our prospect going through right now?
Why would they even consider buying a cookbook?

  • For instance, with a launch called ‘Paleo Snacks’ (that at last count, sold upwards of 25,000 copies) we focused on the common complaint of walking into a store and having little to choose from except overpriced protein bars.

  • Paleo Breakfast Recipes addresses the morning MISERY of eating the same damn breakfast each day…
  • And for the 100,000+ Paleo Eats cookbooks that were sold, I was fortunate enough to create copy around a Cordon Bleu-trained chef.

The big takeaway here?

Pick a pain point based upon your knowledge of your market and exploit and expand on it with a story.

Trust me, when you pick the right pain point, the story pretty much writes itself.

Now I know copywriters are fond of talking about stories. But not the way *I* do stories.

The difference is night and day.

These stories are designed to speak to an individual prospect’s PRIMAL urges and desires. The things they sense deep within themselves.

Cookbooks are PERFECT for this. Because everyone understands the need for food at a primal, psychological level.

You can’t help it. The moment you see an image of a tasty meal you’d like to have, a deep psychological trigger is flipped. Even your mouth starts watering.

For instance, take a gander at this story that opened the Bone Broth Cookbook:

It’s been a long, rewarding day…

Your ancient ancestral tribe of hunter-gatherers have just finished a long overdue, fruitful hunt.

Everyone in the tribe is hungry and excited. As you look on, they’re harvesting every part of the dead animal.

Mouth-watering muscle and organ meats are taken first. Even things that can’t be eaten are scavenged to make clothing, weapons and tools later on.

Everything is precious. Nothing is wasted.

But what about the parts of the animal too tough to chew? What about those that don’t work so well for shelter, weapons or clothing?

What about the bones, hooves, knuckles and so on?

What do they do with those?

Short answer? They burn them.

That’s right.

Early ancestors would insert fired rocks into the empty carcasses of hunted animals. They discovered the heat would break down tough animal bones, creating a strangely-satisfying elixir.

Initially, they’d sip the simmering brew from hollowed-out tortoise shells.

It gave them strength, it gave them stamina, it kept them strong and vital and healthy–even in the most challenging of environments…

Notice we’re not intellectualizing here. We’re not taking them on some long winded, Luke Skywalker hero’s journey either.

No. We’re getting to the point. We’re tapping into primal archetypes and desires they can’t deny. In this case, being hungry and in want of a meal that nutritiously satisfies. Using stories EVERYONE in the market appreciates as the communication device.

Did I plan on this going in? The answer is ABSOLUTELY.

And you should as well.

With every cookbook, there is always a hook… a story that’s so compelling, it DEMANDS your attention.


Component #2:
Romancing the recipes

Merely having great recipe names inside the cookbook is not enough for massive success. (Although it helps A LOT.)

You want the reader salivating at the thought of your cookbook’s recipes.

That’s why we spend the time fine tuning the descriptions of the recipes…

… the delectable taste, the vivid color, the rejuvenating health benefits…  

… teasing the reader as if we have a hot meal waiting for them on the other side of the buy button.

Let me give you an off-the-wall example. It does the job better than I ever could.

It’s a pretty funny (if you’re a copywriter) comedy skit from Conan, called:

The Tea Copywriter Cage Match

With cookbooks, select a few of THE BEST, most delicious looking and sounding recipes and then romance the heck out of them.

Whatever you do, don’t hold back.

That said, you could do everything right on-page, but there’s one thing you need to ensure your success.

Before they even get to the sales page, you need
to put them into the right frame of mind…

I call it warming them up.

And there’s no better way to do that than with:

Component #3:
The Killer Emails

Now, Paleo Hacks is typical of a health info-business in this space by leveraging affiliates to suck in untold amounts of traffic.

Nothing new here. EXCEPT…

Cleverly, they give affiliates the lion’s share of the sale knowing this will make them promote HARD.

That way, this superior health blog gets a ton of new customers with very little effort.

And what really gets affiliates pumped, along with a high-converting sales page, are CREATIVES (such as email swipes) that resonate with their lists, priming the pump for the sale.

With the Paleo Breakfast campaign, we did just that with an email subject line that landed like a nuclear bomb. it said simply:

Subject: “Bacon and eggs, AGAIN?”

Amazing as it may seem, the sale is made right there in that headline.


The problem of being restricted at breakfast time is so great and so common for Paleo lifestylers that this single line immediately resonated.

They thought: “You know how I feel!”

And we really do.

And from that point on, it’s really a case of making sure you don’t screw up the sale.

Here’s the rest of the email:

I can remember when I first committed to Paleo.

My energy was bursting. Fat was flying off. My health was returning with a vengeance.

For breakfast?  Sizzling strips of bacon and eggs–sunny side up.

Who knew bacon and eggs would be the catalyst of my Paleo transformation?

Every day, I’d wake up, and look forward to the sound, the smell, the taste.

Until one day… I didn’t.

I had to admit to myself, I was sick of them. Not just bored or fed up of the taste, but truly SICK of them.

Now I was in a quandary. What to eat. What to do?

Going back to previously unhealthy options was out of the question. It’d been months since I had an English muffin, a donut or bowl of cereal.

And skipping breakfast altogether was simply not an option.

Scouring the Internet for a tasty and satisfying Paleo breakfast ideas proved frustrating and time consuming.

And then suddenly I discovered these recipes from Paleohacks…

Paleohacks Paleo Breakfast Recipes

Hmmmmmm, delicious. Recipe after recipe, everything I tried, tasted sooo good.

Now I finally had what I craved… Variety.

The best part?

These Paleo-friendly breakfast meals can all be made within 10 short minutes! Just as fast as whipping up bacon and eggs.

In the process, my health exploded.

Whoever said it is right. Breakfast *IS* the most important meal in a Paleo day. And double that, especially when you’re following these kick-butt recipes.

=> Paleohacks Paleo Breakfast Recipes

Let’s wrap this up…

I have to tell you, it’s kinda weird being one of the top cookbook copywriters on the face of planet.

First time I wrote for a cookbook, I admit I had my doubts.

Then after 500,000+ cookbooks sold,
I’m thinking it can’t be this simple, can it?

That’s why I decided to write this blog. I mean, who knew so much much money could be made with things that are readily available for free via Google?

But that’s exactly my mindset going in, writing a cookbook promo.

Look at it this way: I’m competing against FREE STUFF.

I simply have to do a better job. Each and every word has to count.

And that’s probably my biggest tip I can give you…

Put some muscle
into your copy

Work on it U.I.S.–Until It Sings.

Combined with the marketing strategies I’ve shared with you, I have no doubt of your ultimate success.

Good luck.

Matt and the Conversion Gods team.

P.S. If you have a project or you’d like me to review some copy of yours, feel free to reach out.

Paleohacks, as well as other long term client/partners keep us pretty busy, but we’ll make the time for you:

One Marketing Funnel To Rule Them All


“It began with the forging of the Great Funnels.

Three were given to the Elves, immortal, wisest and fairest of all beings. Seven to the Dwarf-Lords, great miners and craftsmen of the mountain halls. And nine, nine rings were gifted to the race of Men, who above all else desire power. For within these rings was bound the strength and the will to govern each race.

But they were all of them deceived, for another funnel was made. Deep in the land of Mordor, in the Fires of Mount Doom, the Dark Lord Sauron forged a master funnel in secret… One funnel to rule them all.”

Forgive the pun. I couldn’t help it.

This article is about marketing funnels.

Designing intricate marketing funnels and campaigns is something I do. And partners and clients tell me it’s something I do quite well.

My most recent win is creating the entire marketing funnel for a weight loss membership program. It’s created over 3000 full paying members in less than 2 months.

I’ve built…

  • Email autoresponder funnels…
  • Maximized cold traffic funnels…
  • Product launch funnels…
  • Membership funnels…
  • Automated webinar funnels…
  • Book launch funnels… etc…
  • (“Etc.” are 3 secret funnels strategies I’ve been keeping to myself and my partners.)

I have a knack for funnels because of one basic quirk in my thinking. I think of marketing and copywriting in terms of systems and processes.

It’s not just a VSL, or sales letter, that sells people. It’s the entire process of going from complete ignorance about you and what you offer…

To falling in love with you,
wanting to become one of your tribe…

Now, when I named some of these funnels above, most copywriters and marketers will have a sort of mental checklist their head they’re ticking off. Silently nodding to themselves:

“Yep, I know that one. Yeah, and I know that one. And yes, I know that one.”

I know, I would. 😉

Trust me on this, you may know funnels in a tactical, or even a strategic sense. Enough for you to write the copy.

And that may be enough for you to get by. It may even be enough for you to get paid.

But it isn’t enough for you to build an enduring, ultra-profitable BUSINESS for and with a client.

You need to think bigger. And higher. And broader.

And that’s my master marketing funnel
I want to share with you today.
The one marketing funnel to rule them all.

I call it the “Lord of the Rings” Funnel…

In order to build an encompassing funnel that builds 7, 8 and 9-figure businesses, what you’re likely missing is the mindset. The mindset of the market. Let’s discuss that now.

However, you may say…

“Oh no, Matt! That’s where you’re wrong. I know the mindset of my market like the back of my hand. I did my interviews. I wrote out my buyer persona. I’ve done my research.”

And if you said that, I just proved my point. Because there is not ONE single mindset of the market.

There are actually SIX market mindsets
within a single market.

Yeah, SIX. Each one integrally linked to a specific stage and phase of your business’ marketing funnel, regardless of how it takes shape…

What you want to do in shift a person’s mindset through 3 stages and six discrete phases.

Now at this point, if I do my job right, you’re about to have an epiphany. And this epiphany will be so big and come on so strong, it will haunt you for the rest of your marketing and copywriting life.

What this epiphany will also do is get you thinking bigger, get you off the one-off marketing funnel campaign-itis treadmill and into true business-building.

If you’re going to help build an enduring business with a client, THIS is the marketing funnel that lays the foundation for everything else to come…

Marketing Funnel Stage #1: Cognitive – “I am aware of you”

The first mindset stage your prospect is one of cognition. They know you’re out there. They become aware They know YOU are in the market in some what shape or form.

They don’t know who you are or what you do or how you do it.

To them? You exist. That’s all. You a blip on their radar.

They don’t even consider themselves a prospect (yet.) Maybe YOU think they may be, but they don’t. It’s too early in the relationship.

Now in order to get to the next major stage, the prospect naturally, effortlessly, goes through two distinct phases.

FIRST the prospect becomes aware, THEN they start to become knowledgeable. Not necessarily in a research gathering way, but more of a “Let me Google him for a moment…”

This distinction is critical to your success.

During this stage, your “prospect” isn’t even a prospect for whatever it is you offering (unless it’s free.) Don’t even try at this point, it’s premature.

But as you are probably aware, most marketers won’t heed this advice.  They’ll pitch something.  Anything just to create a buyer.

That’s why you see the “free plus shipping” offers, that’s why you see the “$1 membership” offers.

(Note: Those CAN and DO work. Especially in situations where a JV/affiliate RELATIONSHIP is already present and they’re pitching the offer to their list with their recommendation.)

However, if you try to sell too early, this stage is like you’re in a mall, and you pass an interesting storefront and you quickly go inside. And the salesperson practically jumps on you and in an overly cheerful voice says “How can I help you today?!”

Usually You’ll scare them away.

In reality, the only thing you have going for you at this stage is the emotion of… Curiosity. And they have some money in their pocket.

If you’re smart, you’re going to do something with that emotion.

What you do with that person’s curiosity depends upon your specific business, but you must do something with it to ESTABLISH A RELATIONSHIP in a non-threatening way.

Because that’s where the money is.

Let’s look at this online and see what happens.

A person enters your orbit with a curiosity-provoking article from you in their FB feed. They click on it and the fun begins…

Marketing Funnel Stage #2: The Affective Stage – “I like you”

The next significant stage of a business’ marketing funnel, if you were smart and established the initial relationship is to strengthen the bond.

This stage is where you affect them EMOTIONALLY them in some way shape or form. This is the “feeling stage.” They like you, and maybe they like you a lot.

Done right, the prospect passes through all three of these stages.

They read your article.  And they like your article.  Maybe they like it a little or maybe they like it a lot.

What are you going to do, now that they like you?

Answer: You’re going to make them a little offer. You’re going to ask them to do something small and totally non-threatening.

Your motive? Not to make money, necessarily. You may even lose money on the initial transaction. But it’s ok. You’re an astute marketer, you’re building a base and you’re thinking long term.

In their eyes, you’re proving yourself. You’re building trust. You’re being consistent with who you portray yourself to be in the market.

So because you are smart and developed a relationship, you’re cultivating that relationship. Either quickly or slowly.

Yes, I said “quickly.” In less than 30 minutes, you can have their conviction. Willing to spend several thousand dollars with you.

(This is how the cold traffic marketers make their gazillions.)

Marketing Funnel Stage #3: Behavioral – “I want to be a customer.”

If you done your job right, the prospect will NATURALLY go from awareness, to liking, to taking the action, actually doing things as a part of your tribe. This will be almost effortless for the prospect.

They’ll want to do it. Very little pressure or even incentive is required.

Again, it you do it right, they’ll buy for three significant reasons:

  1. The curiosity of how it feels to be your customer.
  1. The desire for the benefits you’re promising.
  1. The desire to be a part of your tribe. Done right, they’ll kill to be associated with you.


If you follow this meta-marketing funnel model, regardless of your specific marketing campaign, online or offline, you’ll be building an enduring business.

The more you can systemize/automate it, the better it will be.

The One Funnel To Rule Them All…


Some marketers proceed with this funnel slowly building curiosity, credibility, trust and interest over time…

They’re in no rush to be profitable. They want to build their base, build their tribe.

(For instance, I’ve recently discovered Great service. They’ll rewrite and edit the personal emails you send. They’re doing it for free right now, indefinitely. But someday, they’ll start charging.)

Other marketers have a far more aggressive approach. For instance, I’ve used this model in a single VSL for a supplement recently promoted heavily on YouTube. With traffic being driven by a YouTube preroll ad. We’re in the processing ramping up to $3mm a month.

It’s harder for sure, but it can be done. I’ve done it many times.

In the context of the Lord of the Rings Funnel, feel free to use all the different funnels you’re already aware of. Just make sure it has a place inside the one funnel that rules them all.


Good luck and if you need help implementing, just holler. My email is

PS: Did you get your marketing funnel epiphany? I hope so. I really do. This funnel has added multiple zeroes onto my clients and partners bank account balances. More importantly, it’s built enduring businesses, not just one-off product launches.

I hope it does the same with yours.

One Secret To Beating The Pants Off A Control


[Note: If you really study this blog today, you’ll be pleasantly delighted to discover a true secret to creating a winning, control-beating piece of copy.

Unfortunately though, I’m NOT going to lay it out on a silver platter for you.


You know what will happen, right? It’ll quickly be swiped, turned into some 3-step formula, blog or top ten listicle. Ad nauseum.

However, if you’re a marketer or copywriter and you’re serious about beating the pants off the competition, a true breakthrough awaits you today.

Let’s get started…]

It’s Friday night, and I’m coming off a pretty good week…

  • With a major Client in a ruthlessly competitive weight loss market, the piece I’ve written for them is breaking records in every way imaginable. Between their in-house list and JV lists, their average upfront conversion is over 10%, the upsells are averaging 20%.

While the Client is frantically trying to handle the influx of new business, in the heat of the moment, I had to remind him “These are good problems to have…”

Cold traffic is in the wings…

  • A major supplement company just reported the piece I’ve written for their beauty product is beating their current control by a comfortable 30%.

And we haven’t even started optimizing.

  • And in the dating market, a launch I’m involved in reported conversions of 3.5% on average and as high as 6%. With as much as $2.00 EPCs. (As you may be aware, 2% conversions and $1 EPCs are considered very good.)

I tell you this not to brag. (We British find bragging uncouth.) I share this with you because in my heart, I want you to know the joy of writing winning copy.

So now the obvious question you may have is…

“How do you do it, Matt?
What’s your secret?”

Like I said in the beginning, I’m sure a formula would be appreciated right now. But that’s not on the cards. That would actually be counter productive to you.

Let me start off by saying this:

Much of my day is spent studying my Client’s competition.

Why? Well to be really straight about it, NOT because I want to be more like them.

I must admit, they are in an enviable position.  I respect what they’ve achieved.  And I want my Client to experience the same success they’re having.

Like it or not, my competition has climbed to the top, and become King of a VERY crowded hill.

My job, my ultimate goal as a copywriter, is to knock the competition off their well-earned perch. To me, they’re a worthy competitor, a worthy opponent.

Now in order to beat them, most copywriters try to accomplish that several different ways.

One rather common way is to swipe what the competition is doing.

This strategy, as you might be aware, is rampant on the Internet. By and large, it DOES work to create copy that converts.

Have I done it?

Sheepishly speaking, yes I have. But it’s been a long time.

In your apprentice and journeyman years as a copywriter, you (falsely) think “all I have to do is produce a piece like that.”

So you copy. Steal. Swipe. Whatever you want to call it.

But as I’ve discovered, while it may make the client happy and it may give you nice conversion numbers, breakthrough copy ISN’T written that way.

Based upon my experience, that strategy will not come anywhere near beating the existing control.

Yet, I’m fanatical about studying my competition.

Why you ask?

Am I looking for their copywriting formula? For the underlying structure of their persuasion strategy? For the regurgitated benefits and bullets every other piece in the market has swiped from them?

As a copywriter, I can’t help but appreciate things like this, but no. That’s not what I’m looking for either.

At this point, I’ll let Neo from the Matrix take over and explain…

Trinity: “Neo… nobody has ever done this before.”

Neo: I know. That’s why it’s goes to work.”


To beat a control, you must do something different.

In my case, I’m trying to do something RADICALLY DIFFERENT from the competition.

Risky? Not really.

“That’s why it’s going to work.”

That may sound brash. Or overconfident. It’s not.

It’s a strategy that works consistently.

You have to understand the mindset of people on the Internet. Your market. They are constantly on the look out for things that are new, different yet still relevant to them.

That’s extremely good news if your job is creating breakthroughs.

So where do you start? HOW do you come up with that coveted breakthrough exactly?

Again, as paradoxical as it may sound, you START by immersing yourself in the competition.

I’ll have more to say about this in the future, but for now, here’s a quick list of I do:

  1. Get yourself something like Religiously start building an online swipe file of their promotions. If they do VSLs and videos, get them transcribed on (As impromptu as they may seem, there’s magic going on behind the scenes of VSLs.)
  1. Next, pull out your credit card and buy your competitor’s products. Study them. Go through their funnel and document it. Experience what it’s like to be one of their customers. This also gives you the added benefit of getting on their mailing list.
  1. Then, reach out to your competitor’s market. Facebook, forums, Meetups, live industry events are invaluable for immersing yourself.
  1. And don’t forget to analyze the sources of traffic. This is often overlooked. Many times a control wins because it’s targeted and optimized to a specific traffic source. Odds are, the same control directed at a different source of traffic will flop. It’s critical you understand the traffic source and its implications.

That list should turn into a neverending source of inspiration for you.

From there? Imagination, creativity and innovation (and yes, a little hard work) are your best friends.

Not to worry, I’ll have more to say about this in the future, but this should get you started…


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