The Boron Letters – Gary C. Halbert Book Summary

The Boron Letters – Gary C. Halbert | Free Book Summary

The Boron Letters – Gary C. Halbert

This is a collection of touching letters from Gary C. Halbert, the greatest copywriter in history, to his youngest son. In these letters, he shares some insider strategies and wise counsel.

Overcoming Negativity

  • Most people don’t even attempt to accomplish things when it comes to doing them. Dealing with individuals who only have negative things to say is of no use.
  • Sometimes it is better to simply prove your point or complete your task without engaging in an argument in order to avoid wasting time and energy.
  • Most people encounter immediate hostility when they discuss any financial plan with others.  

The Hamburger Stand

What advantages would you most want to have on your side if you and I both owned hamburger stands and were competing to see who could sell the most hamburgers?

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A) Top-notch meat for your hamburgers.

B) An area with a lot of foot traffic on a street corner.

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C) Having the option to charge less.

None of the above!

A STARVING CROWD is the best advantage of all.

Your best customers hot list

Your own customer list is the best of all.

Nothing improves your bottom line faster than selling something new to your existing customers and finding new prospects.

Characteristics of “Hot” Lists

Recency: The more recently a person purchased something similar to what you are selling (via mail), the more receptive he will be to your offer.

Frequency: The more frequently a person purchases a specific item, the stronger their desire for that type of product or service.

The Copywriting Primer

When you become stuck or emotionally clogged, one way to get yourself unclogged and flowing again is to simply keep moving. Walk or run. Jog. Write. Do your dishes. Or something. But don’t sit around waiting for a divine flash.

Write from beginning to end in one sitting to avoid letting your different moods on different days seep into your copy and make it disjointed.

The so what test: bullet proof your writing

  • Re-read whatever you wrote after the initial copy dump and apply the “so what” test.
  • In order to stand out, resist the urge to sound like a cliché by using phrases that a reader could easily finish on their own.
  • Describe in detail what it looks like when satisfied customers benefit from your product.

Copywriting fundamentals

  • Make use of simple, everyday words.
  • Create short sentences and paragraphs.
  • To make your writing flow smoothly, use “transition” words and phrases.
  • The key is to go through many edits, cutting everything out until cutting any more would mean cutting something important to the customer.
  • Once in a while, ask a question and then respond to it.

Good for the eyes

  • When someone first looks at something you’ve written, it should look inviting to read. 
  • Wide margins, a certain amount of white space, double spacing between paragraphs, short words, short sentences, short paragraphs, and an appealing, inviting layout can all be included.
  • Whenever you write an ad, it should look as close to a rave review written by a reporter as possible.

A good first impression

  • Make sure your promotion looks “crisp.” 
  • The layout should be clean, with plenty of contrast, and it should appear simple and inviting to read.
  • If you use images, they should, in general, be of a happy nature.

Practical life advice

  • Get out of bed and go for a walk first thing in the morning.
  • One fast day per week.
  • Look at what people buy to figure out what they want to buy.
  • Segment your marketing – be specific about who you’re trying to reach and tailor your ads to them.

Keeping your enthusiasm engine running

  • Work on topics that interest you; your enthusiasm will make it easier.
  • Keep two lists: one of difficult tasks and another of tasks that you can do regardless of your mood. That way, regardless of your state, you can be productive.
  • Work in a library or somewhere else where people are working – it’s difficult for us as social animals not to work in places like this.

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