Writing a sales letter? Put your heart on the envelope

When I was 19, I was deeply in love with a brown-eyed girl who did the world’s best impression of a duck.
I don’t mean that she waddled or had webbed feet or begged people to chuck bread in her bath. She didn’t.

But she could smile in a way that made her upper lip look ever so slightly like a bill, gaze at you with warm, gentle eyes and say ‘quack’.

Maybe you had to be there. And maybe you had to be in love with the girl. But I had never seen anything so endearing. …read more

How a murderer’s talent for copywriting won him freedom

Next time you open a book on copywriting, I bet you won’t read a more surprising introduction than this one.

Louis Victor Eytinge, the writer of the excellent articles which compose this book, is a life-termer in the state penitentiary at Florence, Arizona.

That sentence greeted me last night when I opened Writing Business Letters which Get the Business – a once-popular series on copywriting that was published in 1914.

All six articles were so good – still valuable to any modern-day copywriter who cares to read them – that I felt no surprise when I learned it was Eytinge’s copywriting talent that ultimately set him free. …read more