Quick Tip:
How to Tell When Your Copy Is Wandering

The "Golden Thread" – a copywriting secret used by the most successful copywriters (and often unknown to the rest) – is where you weave your promotion's Big Idea and core promise throughout your entire sales letter. It keeps your copy moving forward, and compels your prospect to keep reading.

Let's say you're writing a health package and your Big Idea is that the wrong form of calcium can cause – not prevent – osteoporosis.

You're selling a supplement with the right kind of calcium. So you want to incorporate that Big Idea throughout your letter, all the way to the end of your close.

How can you tell if you're wandering away from the Big Idea and your core promise?

When you check your first draft, look for words and phrases like "anyway" or "as I was saying." These are red flags that indicate your copy has gone astray.

When you find those expressions, go back and pinpoint exactly where your copy took a detour.

Ask yourself if the diversion is absolutely necessary to make the sale. If so, can you rewrite it so it carries the Golden Thread forward? If you can't do that, delete it from your main text and use it as a sidebar or in the lift letter.

A good example to look at is the Dr. Smith supplement exercise in the Accelerated Program. Smith's personal story lends credibility to the letter. But you can see that if it hadn't been handled carefully, it would have been a distraction that broke the Golden Thread.

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Published: March 12, 2007

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