The Latest, Greatest (and Easiest) Way to Create Control-Beating Copy

I was really excited when Katie told me about AWAI’s new joint venture with Target Marketing and Direct Marketing IQ. I’ve been a big fan of Who’s Mailing What! for years. I know, firsthand, what a great resource this will be for helping you write powerful copy for both direct mail and email.

Today, I’m going to highlight just a few of the many benefits of the service … and give you a quick idea of how to use it. Here’s just some of what you’ll have access to:

  1. Full-Color Scans of Tens of Thousands of Winning Direct-Mail and Email Campaigns

    You can download these scans as PDF files. Print them out. And study them in detail. Doing it this way lets you analyze the campaign just as it’s seen by the prospect.

    This is how I like to study other copywriters’ work. Key ideas seem to pop out from the printed page in ways they don’t on a computer screen. Does the copywriter repeat certain words or phrases? How does he handle important information that belongs with the sale but doesn’t quite fit into the main copy? What is his Golden Thread?

    When you have this type of information at your fingertips, you get much clearer insight into what’s going to get your prospect to buy … much deeper than that of other copywriters you’re competing against.

    And this increases your ability to write control-beating copy … and reap the financial rewards that come with it.

  2. Campaign Details

    These descriptions for direct mail include format, offer, size, and whether the package is a control. For email the descriptions include subject line, day and time received plus word count.

    Let’s say you’re writing an alternative health package for the first time. Who’s Mailing What! lets you see what’s mailing right now, what’s working, and what isn’t.

    This is my favorite benefit. I write a lot for the same niches, so it’s easy for me to fall back on what I’ve always done … what’s worked in the past. But it’s important to avoid continuing to follow a trend that’s starting to fade – and Who’s Mailing What! lets me see the beginnings of new trends in formats and offers.

    When I see a new approach used in 5 or 10 campaigns that bring in big responses, I know I’m about to ride the crest of a wave.

    This means you’ll always be able to deliver fresh, exciting, successful copy to your client. Which means you’ll soon be his first choice whenever he needs a copywriter.

  3. Envelope Copy, Headlines, and Subject Lines

    I mine every single package I get from Who’s Mailing What! for effective teaser and headline copy. I don’t copy the words (although they can give you a tremendous head start on writing your own teaser/headline copy). Instead, I dig into what’s being said and how it’s being said.

    Are long headlines working better this year? Or are short headlines the winners? How much real estate is being used on the envelope? Are there pictures, illustrations, or just plain text?

    When a certain teaser/headline approach is currently working, follow it. Let someone else be the pioneer. You don’t have to re-invent anything when you have strong models like those you get in Who’s Mailing What! to work from. If you’ve ever struggled over headline or teaser copy or an email subject line(and what copywriter hasn’t?), you know what a huge boost this is to your career … and confidence.

    I want to tell you about one more benefit of this great service from AWAI and Direct Marketing IQ. It won’t help you write better copy … but it will make you more successful. Because Who’s Mailing What! is …

  4. A Goldmine of Potential Clients

    Who’s Mailing What! gives you access to the names of thousands of major direct-marketing companies that are actively mailing and emailing RIGHT NOW. Just click on the Company Details link for complete contact information and a summary of their marketing history. Each and every one of those companies is a potential client for you.

    Knowing exactly how a potential client is marketing when you write your self-promo letter or make a call to their marketing director gives you a tremendous advantage. Mention that campaign and compliment the client on it. (DON’T tell them what’s wrong with it.) Then tell them you’d like to take a crack at beating it.

    What does this do for you? It tells your potential client that you’ve done your research. That you’re a professional of the highest caliber. And that he’ll do well to hire you. All without you’re saying any of that directly.

The four benefits of Who’s Mailing What! that I mentioned above don’t come close to describing all that’s being offered. There’s tons more. But one of the nicest parts about Who’s Mailing What! is how easy it is to use.

Just go to the homepage. Enter your login … and start mining for gold. They’ve made it very easy for us to find what we’re looking for.

You can search by date range (Who’s Mailing What! goes back to 1985!), company name, niche, and special categories like repeat mailings (controls), grand controls (which mailed for three or more years), premiums, personalization, and more.

Who’s Mailing What! then returns a list of DM mailings and emails that meet your specifications. What’s more … with just a click of your mouse you’ll be able to actually see a PDF of the campaign immediately.

I’ve shown you only a few ways Who’s Mailing What! will make a huge difference to you as a copywriter. What the entire deal adds up to is success for your client … and success for you.

[Ed. Note: To see how easy … and affordable … it is for AWAI Members to get access to this special Who’s Mailing What!, click here: https://www.awai.com/whosmailing/]

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

At last, a professional organization that caters to the needs of direct-response industry writers. Find out how membership can change the course of your career. Learn More »


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Published: September 25, 2006

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