This is my second time attending the annual conference from American Writers and Artists, Inc. Each year, in addition to meeting wonderful people and enjoying beautiful Delray Beach, I’m amazed at how much information is packed into just a few short days.
This year, I was honored to speak on a niche panel, where I shared tips for new writers looking to write for the pet and veterinary industries. But I really enjoyed the main stage speakers – experts in copywriting, storytelling, and marketing. I learned a ton, so it’s hard to boil it down to just a few points… but, here are my top 5 takeaways from this year’s event:
1. The Curiosity Gap
Keynote speaker Andrew Davis was a favorite guest for many attendees – besides being one of the most entertaining speakers I’ve ever seen, his tips on storytelling and case studies were different from anything I’ve heard before. Actually, a lot of other main stage speakers confessed that, after hearing Andrew’s talk, they actually did a last-minute rearranging of their own presentations based on what they learned from Andrew!
The Curiosity Gap basically amounts to an emotional need for closure – and using this concept he explained how to rearrange case studies and testimonials so they’re actually compelling and interesting, and able to hold a client or customer’s attention. I’ll be sure to add more detail on this as I continue my posts in the Stellar Case Studies series.
2. What does stand-up comedy have to do with copywriting?
Kevin Rogers – the founder of Copy Chief, and a former stand-up comedian – shared a formula that works for both jokes, and sales hooks.
Without revealing the entire formula, I’ll note that a key component is a surprising revelation or discovery. In comedy, the surprise twist is what leads to the laugh. In copywriting, it’s a compelling part of the story.
And of course, if it fits, including a little bit of humor along the way can be a good thing, too. The humor in this entertaining presentation went a long way toward holding everyone’s attention so early in the morning.
3. The ASK Method
Speaker Ryan Levesque shared 8 common mistakes that you’ll want to avoid when writing to specific segments of your market, and how to do a better job of addressing your target market with the right messages.
If you plan to use segmented lists for email marketing – which can be a very effective strategy – you’ll want to work with a writer who is familiar with Mr. Levesque’s ASK Method. It could work wonders for your pet or veterinary business.
4. Email tips from Ben Settle
Expanding on email marketing, Ben Settle’s 7 effective tips for emails that get opened and read were very eye-opening – I suppose that’s why he’s one of the leading experts on writing emails that work. I was a little surprised at the theme of ‘not being nice’ when you write emails – but it all made sense in the end.
5. SEO Copywriting
SEO industry pioneer Heather Lloyd-Martin was at the conference this year, and her excitement for SEO was contagious. This was a good reminder about the importance of SEO – especially when Heather pointed out that for some of her clients, it worked better than paid advertising. Her up-to-date tips will definitely be incorporated into my own writing, and can be very helpful for increasing the organic search rankings for your pet or veterinary business.