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Your copy ideas are worthless if you don’t do this

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Ideas are worthless without execution.

But what if, even when you execute on your idea for that big promotion, or that landing page, or email…. what if people still don’t buy your idea?

When both great ideas and flawless execution are not enough, there’s still one thing you can do. Whether your goal is to persuade, to convey a message or to simply share your opinion.

Creative ad man Dave Trott in his book “One plus one equals three” tells the story of a study where they served McDonald’s burgers to high-end chefs for them to taste and judge.

Thing is, they didn’t tell the chefs those burgers came from McDonald’s. And they changed one single thing…

Rather than serving the burgers wrapped in paper, they placed them on a nice plate and pierced them with a toothpick.

Result? All the chefs rated the burgers as top quality, on a different level than McDonald’s.

What changed was the presentation.

The lesson?

“We don’t allow for how much they’ll be influenced by the presentation.

So if you want your idea to get bought, remember that. Don’t expect it to be judged purely on what you think are its merits.

Work out beforehand how you can get it taken seriously and judged in their world, in their language.

Not in the language of the world it actually has to work in.

Present your idea on toothpicks.”

And this is where a lot of businesses go wrong…

They assume that their unique idea and how they execute on it, will be seen exactly as they intended it to be seen.

Rather than using their audience’s language, they push their own words out into the ether hoping they’ll be received and accepted.

Rather than entering their prospect’s worldview they impose their own. Along with what they think their motivations for buying are, or where they believe their fears and anxieties lie.

For example, for a SaaS client selling an intranet solution, I noticed that a ton of customers emphasized the words “one login”, or “single access”.

The industry standard would have dictated we called it a “source of truth”.

But was that really what prospects called it in their world?


So I decided to go with a simple value proposition headline that spoke to their reality and that changed the whole presentation of the brand and positioning:

“Your office and your people, only one login away

The solution as always, is listening to your audience.

And maybe, add a toothpick to it.

I can help you stick it in , get in touch.

Quote and reflection of the day:

“Today’s where you need to target your thoughts and energy. Today’s where there’s respect to earn, training to accomplish, and money to make.“

  • Mark Divine, Unbeatable Mind

A truly engaging and engrossing life is about the work you do – every day – to build something worthwhile. Memories are frail and expectations are misleading. But the work is real.

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