Holiday Daily Steals start today … first "Fun Things" prize winner announced … the latest trend in quick-scan response codes … expand your search engine comfort zone … meet the copywriter who invented Rudolph … and more
Click here to get in on tomorrow's great deal today! (Hint: It's for one of our most popular career-building resources.)
Warning, though … this very special price will last only until midnight tomorrow.
After that, there'll be more exciting "steals" for you each day until Christmas … so be sure to check the AWAI website, https://www.awai.com, every day!
Congratulations to Anita Apodaca … the first "Fun Things" prize winner in our Commit to Achieve Your Goal in 2011 Giveaway.
Here's Anita's goal for 2011:
"O.K., I've done my learning. My confidence is soaring. Now I'm ready to commit to be all I can be by the end of 2011 with more money in the bank than I've ever had. But most important, to move to Ecuador (where I already own an apartment) totally self-sufficient without being slavely dependent on my measly Social Security checks.
"The plan and roadmap are laid out. Focus will prevail!"
Anita's prize? An iPod Shuffle!
The next winner (and his/her prize) will be announced tomorrow at 9:00AM ET. Check AWAI's website to see if it's you. Then check back every morning at that same time through December 25 to meet the latest winner, see what they plan to accomplish in 2011, and check out their "Fun Things" prize.
If you haven't yet registered for this giveaway, there's still time. All you have to do is click here to tell us about your goal for 2011. You'll be entered in the drawing for the 15 remaining "Fun Things We'd Like to Have" prizes.
You can see the full prize list here, which includes an iPad … a Net Book mini laptop … an Amazon Kindle … an Omaha Steaks Gourmet Collection … a Wii … to name just a few. In all, there's more than $3,000 worth of really cool gifts!
Everyone's a winner. In addition to being entered in the prize giveaway, you'll also receive FREE access to a special teleconference in early January with Nick Usborne – a man who credits setting … and then "working" … goals with being a major force in his success. Nick's helped hundreds of freelancers successfully set and achieve goals through his most recent program, Profitable Freelancing. And during the January call, he'll help you set up a comprehensive plan for achieving your goals.
Others will have to pay $79 to attend this teleconference – but you'll get it FREE.
And that's not all Nick's doing for AWAI members in January …
Nick is offering a seven-week training series, beginning January 17, for everyone who signs up now for his hugely popular How to Write Your Own Money-Making Websites program. In addition to the proven, step-by-step instruction Nick gives in the program, he'll walk you through the complete process in these live (and lively!) webinars. There'll be real-time Q&A at the end of each call. And you'll be joined by a supportive group of your peers … all working toward the same objective.
Plus, if you order today , you'll ALSO save $100! You'll have plenty of time to read through the program before the training series begins on Jan. 17. What better way to start 2011 than with the launch of your very own money-making website!
Stanley and Natalia Collins were part of Nick’s last training series … and, as a result, they have their very own money-making website.
"We’re enjoying the process of building our website immensely. We want to retire in Russia next year to be near our family and friends. We believe this is the best vehicle we have seen to enable us to accomplish this goal financially."
Web content writer … B2B copywriter … technical writer … grant writer … graphic designer … these are just a few of the new job postings added to DirectResponseJobs.com this week.
Looking for new clients? Make sure you're checking out DirectResponseJobs.com regularly.
First JC Penney … then Target … now the blurred line between offline print copy and online Web copy is extending even to the wine section of your local grocery store!
Last week, Jay White told you why he's so excited about quick-scan response codes (QR codes). They are simply a type of two-dimensional code that can be read by smart phones, mobile phones with a camera, and QR scanners. The idea is to connect a physical object with displayed text, contact information, or a Web page.
QR codes have hundreds of marketing applications in every medium, from billboards to email marketing to print catalogs. Marketers like their help in calculating return on investment.
And now, Kendall-Jackson Family Wines recently announced that its Vintner's Reserve Chardonnay will display tags that feature a QR code. This will allow users of smart phones equipped with a QR reader to scan the tag right in the store and view a video of Kendall-Jackson's Executive Chef Justin Wangler explaining how to pair the wine with food.
Soon, users will be able to access wine information, recipes, and shopping lists when they view the code on the tag. It's designed to make the wine-buying experience educational, fun, and easy.
And all this spells more opportunities for you …
As Jay told us, companies like Target are incorporating QR codes into their holiday catalogs. Readers can quickly scan the codes with their smart phones and be taken to the company's website to get more information and place an order.
Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales proved that consumers are coming out of their long, recession-induced slumber and are starting to buy again, in droves. And with merchants embracing the new technologies available to them, this could be the perfect time for you to polish the copywriting skills you already have and quickly transform yourself into a Catalog Copy Pro for the new decade.
The best way to do that? Pick up our newly revamped Secrets of Writing for the Catalog Market. We started with the authoritative classic by the master, Herschell Gordon Lewis. Then we added Jay White's inside scoop on writing catalog copy for the Web. Next, we topped it off with SEO expert Heather Lloyd-Martin's take on how search engine optimization pertains to catalog copywriting.
And we added these two bonuses:
AWAI's Catalog Niche List. This list of potential clients is going to be a go-to resource for you as you become ready to start taking on assignments.
Have specific interests or passions? This list of 335 catalogers, divided into 16 niches, makes it easy to zero in on the industries you're already jazzed about …
Top Catalogers With Multiple Brands. Many of the industry's top catalogers put out a number of different titles, and this list will point you to some of the biggest and most successful multi-brand companies.
One of the great things about this resource is that, by landing an assignment with one of these biggies, you could end up getting a lot more work writing for one or more of their other brands.
Get started writing catalog copy today. Click here to see how easy it is … and how you can save $150.
And there's more news about how technology is the copywriter's friend …
Experts forecast: Ad spending will be up in 2011. The 38th annual UBS Global Media and Communications conference kicked off this week in Manhattan, and forecasters on the panel that opened the conference say the advertising industry will recover faster from the recession than expected.
The experts were especially big on one medium in particular. "The success story, perhaps surprisingly, has been television," said Steve King, chief executive at the ZenithOptimedia division of the Publicis Groupe.
While many predicted that DVRs would signal the death of TV commercials (much like the predictions that the Internet would kill magazines and catalogs), it's consumers' embrace of new technologies like digital TV, HDTV, and DVRs that keep them watching TV. And that helps keep marketers buying commercial time.
In fact, all available ad space for the Super Bowl on February 6, 2011 is already sold out, earlier than usual (despite rates of up to $3 million for a 30-second spot).
All three forecasters on the UBS conference panel predicted an increase in worldwide ad spending for 2011 compared with 2010, across all media. Good news as we head into the new year!
Nick Usborne agrees with those forecasts …
FREE Virtual Event of the Year for Web Writers …
"Just follow the dollars," Nick advises. "With billions of dollars moving from offline media to online media, there is a fast-growing demand for copywriters who truly understand the online medium. For those who get it, there will be no shortage of online copywriting work for many years to come."
And on Saturday, December 18, you can get more advice from Nick and other industry experts – like Steve Slaunwhite, Heather Lloyd-Martin, and Jay White – during the Wealthy Web Writer's first-ever virtual Web Writer Summit aimed at helping you make 2011 your most successful year yet.
This first-ever virtual event of its kind will cover everything from online business-to-business (B2B) writing to SEO copywriting to marketing with video, and much more. You can attend all the events or just the ones you're most interested in. You'll come away with a lot of great information, as well as inspiration for the coming year.
Sign up now to reserve your FREE spot.
Will Newman wants to know … "Are you stuck in the 'familiar search engine comfort zone'?" Will tells this story:
I have a friend who grew up in San Francisco like I did. When we meet for coffee, he'll often tell me some San Francisco trivia he's discovered on the Internet. That's my cue to pull out my iPhone and look it up on Google.
But the last time this happened, there was a major glitch. One that applies to your success as a copywriter. I couldn't find what my friend had found online just an hour earlier. To make matters worse, another friend found it in less than a minute on his iPhone.
I finally figured out that it was because they'd both used Yahoo, not Google, as their search engine – an important reminder to me, and to you, not to get stuck in the familiar search engine comfort zone.
We all have favorite search engines. When we do our Internet research, it's easy to stick with what we like best, what we're most comfortable with. But search engines don't all rank their findings the same. So if you're using only one search engine, you could be missing crucial results. Maybe the really scintillating one is down on page 34 on Google when it would be on the first page in Yahoo.
Improve your Internet searches by using at least two search engines every time you do a copywriting-related search. Here are 5 of the best-known and easiest to use:
- Google: www.google.com
(I usually use Google Advanced – http://www.google.com/advanced_search?hl=en.)
- Yahoo: www.yahoo.com
- Bing: www.bing.com (Microsoft's recent addition to the mix)
- Ask: www.ask.com
- Dogpile: www.dogpile.com
(Dogpile searches the other four search engines, which makes it good for a quick "first look" – but don't rely solely on it.)
I'd love to know if you have a favorite search engine that I haven't listed. If you do, please post it here to share it with all of us.
- Google: www.google.com
IMPORTANT REMINDER: Sunday is the last day to send in your essay for the latest AWAI Writing Challenge, "What I Am Especially Thankful for This Year."
Send your 1,000-word (or less) essay to me at AskKatie@awaionline.com with "Thanksgiving 2010" in the subject line. Be sure to include your name on your essay, not just on your email cover sheet. (You'd be surprised how many people don't!) The winning entry will be announced in next week's issue of Inside AWAI.
And speaking of things to be thankful for …
Check out this note from AWAI member Starr Daubenmire
"I just attended my second Bootcamp and I'm still on a high. Last year's Bootcamp literally got my copywriting business established. By that I mean I became a full-time copywriter soon after I got home.
"At this year's Bootcamp, I made new contacts and got even more work. Right now, just a few weeks since it ended, I'm looking at a ten-fold return on the price of registration.
"And even though I've been to two Bootcamps, the magic that happens there still continues to amaze me. I've been there … I've experienced it … and I'm still pinching myself!
" If you want to be part of the 'fast track' in action, sign up for next year's Bootcamp right now. That way, it's locked into your schedule as a done deal.
"I guarantee it will be one of the best investments you ever make."
Starr will be at Bootcamp 2011. And you can join her by reserving your spot now at the Early-Bird discount rate (which includes the easy monthly payment option). Just click here.
And, to wrap up today's issue of Inside AWAI, some more holiday cheer …
How a copywriter helped create the second-best-selling Christmas song of all time. If you're flicking the channels at all this holiday season, no doubt you'll come across the classic TV special, "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer."
While the song is familiar, its origins aren't well known.
Robert L. May was working as a copywriter for the Montgomery Ward company in 1939, when they asked him to come up with a promotional booklet they could give away to customers during the holiday season.
May, who had a knack for writing limericks and children's stories, tapped his own childhood memories and came up with the Rudolph character and story. Montgomery Ward distributed 2.4 million copies of the booklet that first year, and 6 million by 1946.
The following year, May convinced Montgomery Ward to sign over the copyright to Rudolph to him (a brilliant business move). With the rights to his creation in hand, he swung into action. First, he printed and marketed the "Rudolph" book commercially. Then, he had a nine-minute cartoon of the story shown in movie theaters.
Things really took off when May got his brother-in-law, songwriter Johnny Marks, to set the story to music. After Roy Rogers turned it down, Gene Autry recorded it in 1949. It sold two million copies that year, and to this day is second only to Bing Crosby's "White Christmas." The TV special narrated by Burl Ives in 1964 further sealed the fortune of Robert L. May, copywriter.
So, what are the writer's takeaways with this holiday story?
- You never know where your creative talents might lead you. (Just ask many of our AWAI members.)
- It never hurts to act like a child (with a child's imagination) once in a while!
- The combination of copywriting and copyrighting can be pure gold.
Have a great week!
What's happening at AWAI the week of Dec. 13 – 17, 2010:
Topic: COS Architecture of Persuasion – Week #4 (webinar)
Join Will Newman for a discussion about the CUBA system, and learn how to use this system to improve your copy.
Participants: COS Ruby, Sayan & Olympic group members only Date:
Monday, Dec. 13, 2010
Time: 8:00PM (EASTERN TIME)
Topic: COS HEADLINES – Orientation (webinar)
Roberta Rosenberg presents a brief overview of your syllabus and an introduction to the online classroom (WebEx) environment.
Participants: COS Fairweather Group members only Date:
Tuesday, Dec. 14, 2010
Time: 7:00PM (EASTERN TIME)
Topic: Circle of Success: Leads – week #2 (webinar)
Donna Doyle explores what an effective lead MUST do.
Participants: COS Taurus & Zagros group members Date:
Thursday, Dec. 16, 2010
Time: 7:30PM (EASTERN TIME)
Topic: Web Writers Summit (webinar)
Listen in as 7 Web experts talk about the Web money-making opportunities of 2011: Nick Usborne, Jay White, Heather Lloyd-Martin, Steve Slaunwhite, Pam Foster, Pete Savage, and Rebecca Matter
Participants: Wealthy Web Writer members only Date:
Saturday, Dec. 18, 2010
Time: 12:00PM (EASTERN TIME)
Note: Access information about all of our events can be found on the AWAI Google Calendar: www.awai.com/calendar
As Executive Director of AWAI, Katie Yeakle has been helping people live the writer’s life since 1997.
“AWAI is built on a big promise … that we can teach you a new skill that can lead to increased income … independence from the 9-to-5 grind … and the freedom to live and work where you choose.
“All of us at AWAI stand behind that promise. In fact, that’s how we measure our success – by how many people we help reinvent their lives.
“Follow our proven advice, and you can be among the many successes we’re so proud of.”
- Have a question or comment for me or any of us at AWAI? Send it here: AskKatie@awaionline.com
- Follow me on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/katieyeakle