Bob Bly

Bob Bly books.
Bob Bly’s Blog
Bob Bly’s eBooks.

“As a rule of thumb, the cheapest clients [who shop by price] are the most difficult to please and the most demanding.”- Bob Bly

How I Plan a Lead-Generation Campaign,” Bob Bly. 
Bob Bly’s “Projects & Fees.”
How to Prepare for a Copywriting Assignment,” Bob Bly.
How I Write Direct Mail, Landing Pages, & Other Copywriting Projects,” Bob Bly. 

I love it when Bob, or any copywriter, analyzes an ad.  He produced this on January 6, 2020. 

Dear Direct Response Letter Subscriber:

Domino’s Pizza is running TV commercials with a simple promise: If Domino’s makes a mistake on your pizza (e.g., wrong topping), they will prepare a new pizza and bring it to you without charge.

I don’t like the campaign–for two reasons . . . 

First, it puts into the consumer’s head the notion that Domino’s makes a lot of mistakes filling orders … a notion that was probably not even there until the commercial suggested it. And is certainly not good for the Domino’s brand.

Second … well, I am 62 and have been ordering pizza delivery for decades … and in all that time, I never received a pizza that was not what I ordered.

Based on this, I would assume the mistakes Domino’s portrays as seemingly commonplace in their TV spots, in fact, are rare.

Therefore, Domino’s promise is to solve a problem that either doesn’t exist — or if it does, happens so infrequently that it’s not a worry in the consumer’s mind.

For the problem/solution approach to work in advertising, you have to start with a problem that is either frequent or feared.

Not one that is concocted out of exceedingly thin air, by an ad agency looking for a good idea — and not finding it.

Another example: A few years back, a direct response commercial featured a colander with extra-wide legs.

Their claim was that it prevented kitchen spills by giving the colander added stability when placed on a flat surface.

To demonstrate, the camera cuts to a scene of a woman putting a colander filled with pasta in the kitchen sink, which then tips over, spilling the noodles.

But to me, it looked as if the woman had nudged the colander a bit with her hand to make it tip over!

Also, our colander is the regular kind, and it has never, ever tipped over.

Therefore, both the colander marketer and Domino’s promise to solve a problem that either doesn’t exist — or else is exceedingly infrequent, if it happens at all.

And as a result, is not something the consumer is thinking about, worried about, or finds either credible or important.

Which results in the buyer not being sold, because the product solves a problem that buyers don’t care about or don’t even believe it is real.

Tom’s Show Notes.  My show notes: 

You need samples to show clients.  Approach a local non-profit that supports a cause you care about.  Volunteer to write a fundraising letter for them for free, in exchange for if it works and they like it that they will be a reference for you, they’ll give you a testimonial, and they’ll let you use their letter as a sample of your writing. 

Approach a relative or a friend who has a small business, and do the same thing.  I’ll write your ad or medical brochure at a discount and I can use it as a sample, and you’ll give me a testimonial and you’ll be a client reference. 

Take an ad and rewrite them to make them better. 

Secrets of a Freelance Writer.  He has 94 books published. 

Richard Armstrong, Madison Avenue is to be creative and different.  Find out what works and spin it out differently. 

Long-form, direct response copywriting.  What’s an example?  Very easy.  Go to Bob’s site, click on “Portfolio” and see samples of long-form copy. 

  1. Best way to build a list: begin to publish a scheduled email. Call it an online newsletter.  You don’t have much of a list yet, but you know someone.  Start putting out a newsletter.
  2. Create a sign-up for your list/newsletter, a registration page.
  3. Free on free squeeze or registration page. To get people to sign up, your free newsletter, you’ve got to offer them some free content: PDFs of content in your topic, free eBook, e-class, webinar series, and offer them a bribe. 
  4. 12-24 different traffic generating methods. How to drive traffic to your registration page?  You don’t have to master them all, you don’t have to try them all.  Successful folks use only 2 or 3 methods: FB advertising, social media networking, email marketing—rent lists of marketing in your field.  Write articles with your byline in a little box that says “MW Does this,” etc.  Study some.  Pick the ones that appeal for you. 
  5. Seth Godin, “You don’t need a huge list to support yourself.” Decent open rates.  All they send is get this; it’s 50% off.  Ben Settle-inspired emails. 
  6. A list of 3,500 and they spend 200, that’s a lot money. Pat Flynn has a big list, podcasting course, been reading his advice, it’s sound.  His first month’s revenue was $225,000.  $1,000/month?  Level 1.  $1,000/week with Level 2.  Level 3: $1,000/day. 
  7. Internet marketing: using techniques to get people to buy things. Lucrative niche.  Build a list.  Build a list.  Pets niche, golf niche, you could do okay.  IM there’s so much low-hanging fruit.  If you just want to supplement income, go with IM.  Bly says go with what interests you.  Golf is a hugely lucrative niche in IM: products, videos, courses, books.  Go with what you’re interested in.  Wherein your interests and the needs of the public, therein lies your niche. 
  8. Fred Gleek. Pushed Bob to get into IM.  Bob created a product.  He wrote a series of columns–$7500 for 10 columns. 
  9. You don’t need to be the world’s leading authority on your topic. You only need to be fairly educated in it.  If you know more than 90% of the world, that’s your audience.  In your topics, there are always things that come up.  An email is 100 words, 200 words, 700 words.  Half of his emails or 1/3 are his reactions to stupid things that people do.  His lesson is teaching how to avoid doing that stupid thing.  Another stupid thing is the things he reads in the news.  The other 1/3 is from his own store of knowledge or research or reading he does.  Libertarian thought, economics, Woods can talk about this for the rest of his life.  We don’t know 1 millionth of one percent of anything.  Product possibilities are abundant. 
  10. Product angle: it’s easy. Find an expert in your topic.  Do a webinar with them, make a CD and downloadable MP3, how is that person going to feel about you making money on their knowledge.  How do you make money out of it.  I’ll do it, but I co-own the product, and you can use it how you want.  2nd, if they’re creating a product, I’ll sell it as an affiliate commission.  In this series of interviews, I’m interview #7.  Fred Gleek.  Sit with a digital recorder reviewing Gleek’s system.  Fred’s audio is raw; he wouldn’t edit it.  It took 4 hours to record it.  They own it as separate products, and he’s sold over $120,000 of that product.  You can create anything. 
  11. Don’t quit your day job yet. Go for phase 1: $1,000/month.  Keep your job, and in your spare time work on your internet business.  How soon can I make money?  If you’re starting from scratch ($1,000), you could do that in a month or two.
  12. How do you build your list? One, whatever he’s doing, phone interview or article, what can he promote?  The bonuses I give for free. 



Copy cannot create the desire for a product,” writes Eugene Schwartz in his book, Breakthrough Advertising. “It can only focus on already-existing desires onto a particular product. The copywriter’s task is not to create this mass desire-but to channel and direct it.” For example, no advertisement, no matter how powerfully written, will convince the vegetarian to have a steak dinner at your new restaurant. But your ad might-if persuasively worded-entice him or her to try your salad bar.

Charles Inlander, of the People’s Medical Society, is a master at finding the right product for the right audience. His ad, “Do you recognize the seven early warning signs of high blood pressure?”, sold more than 20,000 copies of a $4.95 book on blood pressure when ran approximately 10 times in Prevention Magazine over a three year period. “First, you select your topic,” said Inlander, explaining the secret of his advertising success, “then you must find the right place to advertise. It’s important to pinpoint a magazine whose readers are the right prospects for what you are selling.” In other words, the right product for the right audience.

1. Words That Sell.  Closing phrases.  Wednesday, September 21, 2016.
2. USE THE RIGHT WORDS.  The most persuasive words in the English language are YOU, NEW, MONEY, EASY, DISCOVERY, FREE, RESULTS, HEALTH, SAVE, PROVEN, GUARANTEE, and LOVE.
3.  Ads That Sell: How to Create Advertising That Gets Results, Bob Bly, 1988.
4.  Posting your articles at other sites, Bob Bly, 2018.
10.  If you run out of material, then check this out.

1.  UpWorthyGenerator.  Online headline generator.
2.  Marketing 2 Engineers, Bob Bly.  Bob Bly’s B2B Copywriting.
3.  Marketing to Automotive concerns, Bob Bly copy portfolio.
4.  Writing Industrial Copy that Sells, Bob Bly.
5.  Bob Bly’s Methods.
6.  Direct Mail Checklist, Bob Bly.
7.  Bob Bly’s Guarantee Page.
8.  Sample of Bob Bly’s Copy.
9.  Bob Bly’s Portfolio.
10.  Bob Bly’s articles.
11.  Perry Marshall Products.
12.  Tested Sentences That Sell, Elmer Wheeler, 1937.
13.  Bob Bly on Milt Pierce.  Bob Bly on what works, Monday, September 11, 2017.
14.  Copywriter, Richard Armstrong.
15.  63 Marketing Strategies by Dan Kennedy.
16.  Jay Abraham Marketing Strategies, like 500 of them.

1.  Bob Bly says that writing an e-book is the easiest way to make money online.
2. 10 Sales Secrets from Trump University, Bret Arends, June 3, 2016, Market Watch.


Posted on Thursday, June 7, 2018.

FOR COPYWRITERS [See sample copy done by one of the industry’s best, Bob Bly.]
1.  Write Better Faster, Bob Bly.
2.  Copywriting Writing Prompts.
3.  B2B Copy: Industrial Writing That Sells, Bob Bly.  When you actually earn an assignment to write a business-2-business copy, where do you go to get ideas?  It is pure genius at work?  Are you some kind of developing brainiac?  Well, you might be.  But on the outside chance that you’re not, where do you go to get ideas? How to Prepare for a Copywriting Assignment.
4.  More from Bob Bly.
5.  Bob Bly’s paid materials.
6.  7 Ways to treat a product or service in copywritingYou know them all already: Gratitude, Fear, Greed, Guilt, Anger, Trust, & Exclusivity.  Find more here.
7.  This post by Danny Margulies was decentPosted here on Monday, May 21, 2018.
8.  Here, Bob Bly offers 29 Ways of Communicating with Clients.  “The 29 Secrets of Achieving Outrageous Levels of Customer Satisfaction,” Bob Bly.  Contact vendor at
9.  How Does Freelance Writing Work?
10.  Bob Bly,8 Money-Making Strategies to Succeed as a Freelance Copywriter.”  Check out AWAI’s free pricing guide.

1.  5 Tips for Giving Successful Presentations, Bob Bly.  PDF.  Find the 5 Tips here.
2.  Find the Best Copywriting Niche for You, Bob Bly, July 19, 2019.  Find the course for $39 here.  
3.  Use My Articles in Your e-Newsletters, Bob Bly, July 16, 2019.  Find his $78 course here
4.  Is Branding a Waste of Money, Bob Bly, July 15, 2019.  Find Bob’s copy here
5.  41 Lost Business Success Secrets of Claude Hopkins, Bob Bly, July 12, 2019.  Find the course here, Scientific Advertising Illustrated, for $39.
6.  Confessions of an Old Junk Mail Writer, Bob Bly, July 11, 2019.  
7.  Writing for Non-Profits Is Profitable, $29, on January 11, 2020.
8.  Bob’s “Lost” Marketing Lectures, $47, on January 11, 2020. 
9.  The 29 Secrets of Achieving Outrageous Levels of Customer Satisfaction (ebook), $29, on January 11, 2020.  There are 29 sensible things you should be doing now to create this extraordinary level of customer satisfaction in every client you serve.

Bob Bly recommends giving speeches to audiences in your industry.  He says that giving speeches is one thing that your competition does that you don’t do.  He writes

First, they’ve taken the time to organize their knowledge into a clear, informative talk – one that conveys valuable ideas to the audience – and makes them sound like knowledgeable pros.

Second, they’ve actively marketed their free talk to organizations their prospects join – and to meeting planners in charge of sessions their prospects attend.

As a result, they – not you – get asked to deliver the important workshops, keynotes, break-out sessions, and after-dinner speeches in your industry.

This is such an easy topic, such a convoluted topic, and for some a controversial topic.  First, let’s hear what Bob Bly has to say.  Bly quotes from an email he received and then offers his own comment on the topic.

I believe that affiliate marketing has corrupted the sacred trust between supplier and customer. I sometimes get the feeling that the products being offered have not been tried and proven by the re-marketer, yet they allow their lists and good names to be associated with inferior products and services.’

In their rush to make as many joint ventures as possible, product marketers and their affiliates often skimp on – or skip altogether – the important step of the affiliate actually reviewing the product before she recommends it to her list.

I like what he says.  I’ve never heard anyone criticize affiliate marketing; his is the first.  For that reason alone I like it.  The following is from CTC Publishing, a Bob Bly and Fred Gleeck company. 

Click Products for a complete listing of our e-books, audio programs, DVDs, and other information products.

Click Club to visit our new membership site Fred Gleeck and Bob Bly’s Internet Information Marketing Club.

The Internet Marketing Retirement Plan.
The Keyword Money Machine.
Writing e-Books for Fun & Profit.
How to Builda Large E-List Fast.
The Email Marketing Swipe File.
Write & Design Landing Pages That Sell.

The Copywriter’s Toolkit.
Write & Grow Rich.
World’s Best-Kept Copywriting Secrets.
Killer Copywriting Secrets.
Writing Book Reviews for Fun & Profit.
Getting Your Book Published.

Ads That Sell: How to Create Advertising That Gets Results, Bob Bly, 1988.

Become an Instant Guru.
Become an Independent Marketing Consultant.
Secrets of Successful e-Mail Marketing.
Ready-Made e-Zines.
Offline Marketing Handbook.
Instant Sales Leads.

1. How to Write Killer Sales Letters,” Bob Bly, $29.  Find more on sales letters by Bob Bly here

1. Bob Bly’s Lost Audio Classics,” $47.