Happy Cyber Monday! Welcome back to The Gig, your free daily guide to conquering the gig economy.
Mentioned in today’s edition: Twitter and Facebook. Plus the power of a good controversial opinion, the difference between knowledge and information, and why most sales copy never converts.
Read time: 4 minutes and 8 seconds
Making the Rounds
- Multicolored Twitter verification launching this week. The revamped program will reportedly offer blue checks to individuals, gold checks to companies, and grey checks for government accounts. Oh, and each verification will be manually approved before the check is activated. That probably won’t take long.
- Facebook’s Widely Viewed Content Report for Q3 reveals top 5 external sites getting traffic from the feed. Just 1 out of the top 20 posts met the company’s criteria for clickbait, representing a 100% drop year-over-year.
- Twitter shutters Brussels HQ, snubbing EU regulators. The company’s last two employees in Brussels, charged with overseeing the company’s digital policy in the region, left last week which led to the office being permanently shut down. Regulators were not impressed, and may soon focus their attention on Twitter once their new digital rulebook known as the DSA comes into effect
Working With Clients
When You Find a Good Controversial Opinion and Let it Rip
Mainstream wisdom is everywhere.
Your audience is bombarded with the same advice all the time.
– cut back on lattes
– eat more vegetables
– go to bed earlier
– avocado toast is why you can’t afford to buy a house
– etc etc
But what sets you (or your client) apart from everyone else is where they disagree.
So ask yourself: what controversial opinions can I highlight?
What mainstream advice do I (or my client) DISAGREE with?
That’s often what makes for the best hooks, emails, or ad angles.
Now, a caveat:
You need to be able to make a logical case for why you disagree.
Don’t just disagree to be a contrarian or to grab attention… unless you can back it up.
Working For Yourself
The Difference Between Knowledge and Information
Information is everywhere these days.
And it’s available to consume in a ton of different mediums…
– YouTube videos
– Digital courses
– Etc etc
But here’s a question for you…
Do you have a system for translating the information you consume into personal knowledge?
Here’s one way to think about it…
Information is a solitary data point without context.
For example, take this quote from productivity expert David Allen…
“Your mind is for having ideas, not holding them.”
Great quote, right?
Now it’s one thing to come across it and think to yourself “dang! I should write more things down.”
But if you want to take the next step and convert that “input” (the quote) into personal knowledge…
You have to add your own context to it.
Here’s how we might do it for the quote above:
– This is why you should write down your to-dos
– This is why you should create your to-do list the night before
– This is why Morning Pages is such an effective exercise for creativity
– Creativity doesn’t work on demand, you need to create space for it
– This is why you should always keep a notepad handy
– Your mind is like a computer, and you need to free up RAM
See how that works?
By connecting these six other thoughts to this one quote, we’re able to contextualize what it means to us.
Ultimately, that’s what adding context means…
Asking yourself: what does this piece of information mean to YOU?
How does it connect with other things you know or thoughts you’ve had?
The topic of personal knowledge management, or PKM, is a rabbit hole we’ve only just stumbled down quite recently…
But it’s already had a profound effect.
And if you’re a copywriter, media buyer, or someone who does any kind of creative work…
Check out the free YouTube course below to learn more about our favorite PKM tool:
From The Copywriting Gig
Why Most Sales Copy Never Converts
Selling in print can sometimes seem like a dark art.
How do you know which specific words will move people to pull out their credit card?
Well, here’s a good place to start…
Focus on benefits, not features.
Features are structural or functional elements of the product.
- These headphones are wireless
- That desk is adjustable
- This online course is self-paced
Benefits are what those features do for the person using the product.
And one easy way to convert features into benefits so you can punch up your sales copy is to use the 3 magic words:
“So you can.”
- These headphones are wireless so you can lift heavy at the gym without worrying about tangled cords.
- That desk is adjustable so you can avoid sitting in a chair all day.
- This online course is self-paced so you can finish it in a single weekend.
Get the idea?
Copy that doesn’t convert is often too feature-heavy.
So next time you’re writing an ad, email, landing page, or product description…
Try dialing up the benefits and see what happens.
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Quote of the Day
“The world is wide, and I will not waste my life in friction when it could be turned into momentum.”
— Frances Willard