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2016 Web Copywriting Intensive Live Blog

2016 Web Copywriting Intensive Live Blog

February 12, 2016 | By Charlotte S Hicks | 19 Comments

2016 Web Copywriting Intensive Live BlogDate: February 28 – March 2, 2016
Topic: 2016 Web Copywriting Intensive Live Blog
Presenters: Joshua Boswell, Pam Foster, Ben Settle, Nick Usborne, Rebecca Matter, Brian Edmondson, Clayton Makepeace

The fastest way to grow your Web copywriting business is at the Web Copywriting Intensive.

From February 28 – March 2, attendees will experience a transformation to paid web copywriters… in just 72 hours. They will learn from the top web copywriters around and work with a copy chief to guide them through the hands-on exercises.

We’ll be there, reporting live on every session:

  • Nick Usborne’s keynote address
  • Campaign Writing: Anatomy of a $15 Million Sales Page with Clayton Makepeace
  • VSL, Royalties, and Much More… with Clayton Makepeace
  • How to Write Ads that Drive Traffic and Landing Pages that Build Lists with Brian Edmondson
  • Street Smart Email Secrets with Ben Settle
  • Writing Website Copy for Multi-Page Sites with Pam Foster
  • Content Marketing and Social Media with Nick Usborne
  • Your Marketing Plan with Joshua Boswell
  • Plus, all of the Panel Discussions

The live blog includes special updates for B2B Writing Success platinum members. Be sure you’re logged in to access all of the premium content. If you’re not a member yet, give platinum membership a try!

We’re also on Twitter. You can follow us here.

Participate and WIN! Add your comments on the live blog and you will be entered in a drawing to win a FREE Web Copywriting Intensive 2016 Home Study. The full price of the Home Study is $1795 – but it can be yours for free just for engaging with us on the live blog.

Sunday, 6:18 p.m.

We’ve kicked off the 2016 Web Copywriting Intensive!

Nick Usborne is giving the keynote address on The New Dawn for Web Writers.

Now is a time of amazing abundance for online copywriters. E-commerce sales have blown through $300 billion a year and are still growing FAST.

Google’s Panda update also increased our value as copywriters. Companies can’t get results with poorly written copy so they must hire good copywriters to write better content.

As Nick talks about the wide variety of web copywriting projects, it easy to see how easy it would be to make a handsome income as a copywriter and never get bored.

And now for some cool stuff…

Nick explains that Ad Blockers are bad news for advertisers, but GREAT news for copywriters. Why? Because they need better content writers! If ads are blocked, there’s a greater need for more branded content and more native advertising.

Another shift is the impact of key influencers. Nick showed us an example of an “ordinary” person who has more Instagram followers than several major media companies. The implications for marketing are huge when regular people have bigger platforms than companies and big media.

We’re wrapping up and heading for the networking dinner. (Yay – I’m famished!)

We’ll be back at 8:00 am tomorrow – see you then!

 Monday, 8:17 a.m.

Clayton is going through a sales page that generated $15 million in sales in 2015.

One of the lines reads, “News of wars and rumors of wars… “ which is a biblical reference. Because the demographic for this product was older, the reference would resonate with them.

This strategy taps into their existing emotions to establish rapport and smooth the way to the call-to-action.

Your emails leading up to the webinar can be very effective if they are personal. Clayton gave the example of one of Ben Settle’s email subject lines, “I thought about you in the shower this morning…”

Another example is, “We’re here, where are you?”

Remember, your product or service needs to give them a benefit now — not 3 years in the future.

If someone abandons the cart, what happens? How do you follow-up with people that don’t buy?

Update for Platinum members only:

This article is reserved content for B2B Writing Success premium members. To continue reading this article please log in or become a member today.

Monday 11:07 a.m.

Clayton Makepeace is talking about Video Sales Letters now.

VSL’s produce sales at 2 to 2.5 times the rate of a static sales page. But since it’s more expensive to make, test a sales page first, then convert it to a VSL.

The most successful VSL’s for Money Map Press were the ones where the video was produced without a script for the prospect to read.

VSL’s are a linear medium – the prospect walks through the VSL in order. They cant’ jump around like on a written sales page.

New copywriters often bury their lead too deep into the copy. Be sure to hit it right away.

Time for a lunch break. We’ll be back with Brian Edmondson after lunch.

 2:14 p.m.

Brian Edmondson is presenting on How to Write Ads that Drive Traffic and Landing Pages that Build Lists

The 3 Critical Drivers of an Online Presence are:

1. Lead Generation – Traffic
2. Lead Capture – List Building
3. Lead Conversion  – Sales/Follow up

You can double, triple, or improve your sales as much as 10 times with good follow up.

 3:52 p.m.

Ben Settle is on stage now with Street-Smart Email Exercises.

One type of subject line is the curiosity subject line. Curiosity can be even more persuasive than self-interest. An example would be: Exercises that age you faster.

Straight benefit subject lines also work. “Writer’s block cured in 3 minutes.”

Bizarre subject lines would be something like: “Bigfoot’s healthy prostate secret.”

You can use a play on terms/phrases/quotes like “Lazy Writers have Skinny Kids.”

Contrast Subject Line: “Zap belly fat with french fries and a shake.”

Play on Book, Song, and Movie Titles: “I shot the guru.”

TV and Movie Character subject line: “George Costanza school of writing.”

Special update for our premium members:

This article is reserved content for B2B Writing Success premium members. To continue reading this article please log in or become a member today.

Wow, it’s been an incredible day! Ben, Nick, and Clayton are doing some Q&A to wrap up.

Tomorrow we’ll pick back up with Pam Foster.

The pre-sale for the 2016 Web Copywriting Intensive Home Study runs through Wednesday. Get all the recordings and access to the bonus webinars with Clayton and Ben for only $795.

If you’re the winner of the drawing, we’ll refund your money so don’t wait! Go here to order.

Tuesday 8:10 a.m.

This morning Pam Foster is talking on writing website copy. She’s the author of AWAI’s program Site Audits Made Simple so you know this will be a good session!

Pam gave us the 5 C’s of website copy that works:

  1. Clear
  2. Customer-focused
  3. Competitive
  4. Consistent
  5. Conversion optimized

When working with companies, they want to know you have a process and aren’t just winging it. Using a creative brief should be part of that process.

When approaching clients, don’t tell them what’s wrong with their site, instead frame it as a question such as, “How happy are you with the way your website is performing?”

Remember to sell on every page! Make your product descriptions interesting and benefit-focused.

Nick and Pam have walked us through several websites pointing out good and bad aspects. It’s been very informative!

Join us after lunch for more from Nick Usborne on content marketing.

 1:23 p.m.

Nick will spend the rest of the day on content marketing and social media. This is his area of expertise

One podcast Nick recommends is Tim Ferris. Podcasts are one form of content.

Use quality content to attract new visitors.

Nick warned us that you can’t “kill it” with 10-12 keywords. You need 100+ keywords and keyphrases to be effective.

Optimize for the “fat middle” and the “long tail” to attract organic searches.

SEO is all about the balance of supply and demand. You want low demand but very little supply. Otherwise, you’re competing with thousands of other companies.

SEO terms also reveal intentions. For example, “best digital camera” indicates they are in the research phase. But “best price for Fuji X20” indicates they are ready to buy.

Different pages on the site should be optimized for the keywords and phrases that match the intent of the prospect.

Quality content attracts a ton of inbound links (but make sure they are legitimate and from quality sites.)


Update for Platinum members only:

This article is reserved content for B2B Writing Success premium members. To continue reading this article please log in or become a member today.

Tomorrow, Joshua Boswell will talk about getting clients and marketing yourself.

Wednesday 8:03 a.m.

Pam Foster reminded us of the variety of ways we can work as a copywriter. Some of the options are:

  • in house copywriter
  • freelance copywriter
  • work with one large client exclusively
  • in house plus freelance on the side.

You can tailor your writing career to be exactly as you want it.

Now it’s time for Joshua Boswell.

Joshua stresses that you don’t have be an amazing copywriter to do a good job for your clients. And that each one of us will resonate with certain clients and be a good fit. You only need a few clients to be very successful.

Joshua passed out a personality test for us to take. This will be fun!

Probably no surprise to people who know me, I’m a “powerful choleric.”

The idea of the exercise is to know what our strengths are. You should always play to your strengths.

Joshua has given the group an exercise to help them discover their voice.

10:54 a.m.

Now, we’re developing a marketing plan so we can land those clients!

Joshua urged everyone to ask their clients what else can they do for them? Look for what they need.

Here are the 3 Golden Questions when talking with clients:

  1. What do you want?
  2. Why do you want it?
  3. What does it look like?

As we wrap up, Rebecca announced follow-up webinars to dive deeper into the content from the Web Intensive. You’ll get all the recordings and the follow-up webinars when you purchase the 2016 Web Copywriting Intensive Home Study. Go here to order.

And now it’s time to announce the winner of the FREE Home Study. (Drumroll…) Congratulations to Kevin Rokosh!

About the Author

Charlotte S Hicks

Latest in B2B Copywriting


  • Great stuff Charlotte…thanks!
    Next year WCI will most definitely be on my “things I have to do” list for sure!

    Thanks for the daily update and I will surely stay tuned in for more!
    Have a great time out there and by all means please keep sharing for those of us that are freezing here in
    Florida! ( Comeon its only in the 50’s ha ha)

    All My Best,
    Larry E

    • Hi Larry. I am not at the Web intensive but live in Austin and it is going to be 78 degrees for the second day in a row. Love this weather before it gets so hot.

      • Sandra,
        The weather in SW Florida is so erratic in February …now March!
        We’ve had 75 degree days, as it is right now, with wee hours of am bringing mid 30s to 50s!
        But can’t complain it’s not 10 degrees or snowing!
        Ha ha

  • Thanks, Charlotte!

    This is a great recap. It is timely and helpful.

    I love staying connected with the Web Copywriting Intensive. I can stay connected with you all while writing several client assignments here in my home-based office.

    I just completed the writing for a new website. Now I’m working the design firm in making it come to life.

    I appreciate the great gems everyone at AWAi team works so diligently to give to us. I value them and always find ways to work them into my current projects.

    I look forward to hearing more!

    Thank you!

    Cindy Reed

  • Thanks Charlotte.
    AWAI always has great resources to help copywriters. Hopefully next year I will be able to go to the WCI in Austin. Its only 4 hrs from Dallas. I think getting your first real client is the hardest part of having a business.

  • Thank you, Charlotte.

    For willing to blog the Web Copywriting Intensive event so that the people who were not able to attend can be a part of the event. Thank you for giving of your time and effort to do this. I appreciate it.

  • Hi Charlotte! Appreciate the blog information. I got really excited about Ben Settle’s Street-Smart Email exercise examples. I especially liked the curiosity and straight benefit options. I am going to start using different types of titles in my emails and try to “entertain” my audience. It will be outside of my comfort zone but I can see the benefits. Thanks again for sharing this great information!

  • Wow….You sure had a full day Monday didn’t you! I got exhausted just reading your blog post.
    Again,Charlitte, thanks for sharing your adventure!

  • Good Morning! Site audits seem like they would be great. However, do you have to actually do the work yourself or do you perform the audit and have someone else make the changes.

    I would enjoy the audit part but not sure about doing the web updates myself. Do you have any insight you could share?

    I agree with having processes and I have one I am wanting to put in the b2b forum for some critiques. I know I would feel more comfortable with myself with processes in place so I know potentials clients would like them as well.

    Thanks for the information Charlotte and can’t wait to see what is next!

  • I’m writing product page web copy for a B2B client this week. It’s going well, and is actually a follow-up project to earlier work I did for this client. But still, I’ll be reviewing what you’re posting here Charlotte – looking for any nuggets I can apply right now.

    Does the WCI have any specific B2B sessions on the agenda?

    Thanks Charlotte!

  • Sandra,
    The idea is that the site audit paves the way for you to do the website copy. As a copywriter, you only worry about the content, not the technical side of the website.

  • Hi Kevin,
    The session with Pam had lots of B2B examples. It’s difficult to translate into the live blog because it was so visual. She put up several B2B sites and pointed out the good and bad of each one.

  • Charlotte,
    Hello! Sounds like you had another full day today.You are definetly getting a comprehensive education each day at the WCI…that’s for sure!
    I’m trying to inquire as to our COS price for the home study web intensive.
    Just waiting for Barb or member services to get back to me …as I don’t want to miss out on any pre Wenesday
    Promos there may be for COS.

    If you should know could you please drop me an email!
    Larry E

  • Wow, nearly fell off my chair when I read through to the end of the blog. Thanks Charlotte and to all my “family” at AWAI!

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