The Secret Psychology of Becoming a Great Copywriter

Happy writer with laptop and hands in the air in victory

When an “A-list” copywriter is willing to dish out some of the strategies, techniques, and secrets he used to become a successful copywriter … you listen in closely.

Especially when you know that copywriter is considered one of the “world’s best.” And the copywriter I’m referring to is none other than Mike Palmer, who helped build Stansberry Research and Associates into the biggest financial newsletter publisher in the world.

Mike’s copy has brought in well over 400,000 in paid subscribers and multimillions in sales.

Not only is Mike the head copywriter for Stansberry Research, he also trains all of their junior writers. At one point, he had at least 14 junior level writers eager to learn the art and craft of writing financial copy.

And while there’s no doubt that Mike focused on all the elements involved in creating winning sales letters, including writing attention-grabbing headlines, compelling leads, deeply researched body copy, and an irresistible offer and call-to-action … he also spent time focusing on another part aspect of writing copy … the psychology of learning it.

Starting out writing content and then moving into writing sales copy, Mike recognized that all writers go through a predictable cycle of emotions, including moments of doubt and frustration.

However, the upshot here is that once you realize all copywriters have these moments in their careers, you no longer feel like you’re the only person in the world who feels this way.

And knowing that helps you push forward. So what are the predictable stages of emotions?

Stage 1: Uninformed Optimism. When you’re first starting out in your writing career, you are full of optimism. There’s a fighting spirit deep inside that says you can do this … you can learn how to write copy. Since you don’t know much about copywriting, you immerse yourself in all the books and other learning resources at your disposal.

It’s really enthusiasm that is pushing you forward … allowing you to stay up late at night reading everything you can get your hands on to learn everything there is to know about copywriting.

But then something happens. Your optimism fades and so does your energy for gobbling up all that information.

That leads directly to the next stage …

Stage 2: Informed Pessimism. All that late night and weekend learning hasn’t made you six-figures yet, so you start doubting yourself.

What happens is the initial enthusiasm you felt now fades away and you’re a bit pessimistic about your future writing career. You realize that becoming an in-demand copywriter doesn’t happen overnight.

Here’s what you’ve got to keep in mind. Every writer on their journey to becoming successful, including Mike Palmer and the countless other “A-list” writers, have all felt this way at one time or another in their careers.

The key to overcoming this sensation of feeling pessimistic is to keep studying, learning, and absorbing everything you can about copywriting. It’s also important to surround yourself with like-minded people who have the same goal and can offer you motivation and encouragement.

And one of the best groups to join is AWAI’s Circle of Success. It’s our highest level of learning but it’s tailored to YOU to put you on the path of reaching your career goals. You get mentoring, copy reviews, access to all our learning programs, and so much more. (You can learn more about it here.)

Stage 3: Crisis of Meaning. This is the point in your learning curve where you almost want to give up. It’s actually the lowest point of your career. But if you are committed to learning (as mentioned in Stage 2), you’ll overcome this feeling.

In fact, you’ll move into a state where you recognize you’re actually accomplishing what you set out to do. The learning suddenly makes sense. And finally, it all comes together, bringing you to the last stage.

Stage 4: Informed Optimism. Through all three prior stages, the key is to not give up and to keep learning. Keep pushing forward because eventually you’ll have the skill set and confidence to call yourself a copywriter. And it’s at this stage that you know what you are doing and are more optimistic about your career as a copywriter.

Every copywriter Mike Palmer has trained has gone through these four emotional stages. I’m sharing them with you, Dear Reader, because I want you to know that you are not alone.

Learning to become a copywriter takes a commitment on your part and the willingness to hang in there. As these four stages show, it may not be the easiest journey but if were, it wouldn’t be so lucrative, offering you the chance to make a six-figure income.

So never stop learning and always believe in yourself.

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

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Published: September 20, 2021

2 Responses to “The Secret Psychology of Becoming a Great Copywriter”

  1. Great article! Using a promise for saving is savings is agood idea. Thanks for the hint.

    FDavidPowers

  2. Ms. Franks, Thank you for this today, I needed to hear it.
    I completely relate to these stages. Yesterday, I passed into Stage 3. I was telling myself I would never have what it takes to be successful as a copywriter, that I'm too old to start, etc. The thought was going through my mind that I should just quit and do something else.
    But then, last night, I sat back down at my desk and dove into one of the AWAI lessons I was playing catch up on and felt the spark reignite. I felt myself again wanting to do what it takes to make a success of this new career. I KNOW I can do it.
    It is comforting to know these are stages all of us go through.
    Now I'm looking forward to Stage 4 and beyond!
    Thanks again, Sylvia

    Sylvia Holmes


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