“Kids…don’t try this at home.”Why Hire A Professional

I remember this all too familiar phrase from my younger years when I watched “That’s Incredible” with Fran Tarkenton, Cathy Lee Crosby and the other guy (I can never remember his name….does anyone remember that guy’s name?)

Anyway, I loved that show.

They should have said, “NOBODY try this at home” because I think adults can get themselves in just as much trouble as kids.

Just recently had a conversation with a potential client who is finding out first hand about why it’s important to hire a professional.

I just ran a PHENOMENAL campaign that officially puts me in the category of “Bad A$$” —

It converted at 92%

It was my “Retro Birthday Offer” and here’s what it looked like:


Why Hire A ProfessionalAwesome right?!?

So here’s how this worked: My birthday was coming up, so I sent a birthday card to potential clients offering them a time sensitive discount for MY birthday.

Inside the envelope, there was a real birthday card with a hand written note….. and yes, that’s a live check for $500 you see in there.

I’ve done a few variations of this over the years, but this was the most successful by far. I’ve also had a couple of clients hire me to write ‘birthday offers’ for them that did really well.

These are fun — and get really fun when they turn into huge windfalls.

So, back to this potential client… She received the promo and absolutely loved it. She called me immediately and was raving about how creative it was and how I’m a marketing genius…bla, bla, bla.

Here’s where the fun part comes in:

During the conversation, I became aware that she completely ripped off my promotion. She ‘attempted’ to duplicate it and send it out to her potential clients.

Initially, I was ‘feeling some kinda way’ (as the kids would say)

But, reminded myself that imitation is the best form of flattery — I’m flattered :-/

I know I can’t ‘copyright’ an ad…nor would I want to. An ad is public domain. And as a copywriter, I reference swipe files all the time. So she was well within her rights to steal it, use it in any way she chose to.

But here’s something to consider when trying to duplicate what the pros do:

Imagine going to a magic show. Not one of those cheesy shows held in a smoke-filled back room of an off-strip casino…but a really well-performed, David Blaine-level magic act.

So as you’re watching the magician, you are amazed at the tricks he performs. You’re so amazed that you get the idea of trying his sawing trick yourself.

Why Hire A ProfessionalYou rush home to duplicate the trick. You get a cardboard box, paint it the same colors as the magician’s box, get a similar looking saw and put your pet cat Bubbles in the box…

You wave your wand and say the magic words……….

……..then start sawing.

Need I say more. Poor Bubbles 🙁

This is dumb.

And this is why almost all magic shows start with the disclaimer: “PLEASE DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME”

Because dumb people try these things at home.

Back to the story…

I asked her about her promotion…particularly how her offer read and the first thing she said was that she replaced the check with a lottery ticket….

Uhm…okay

Also, she had no call to action, nor any ‘sense of urgency’ language…no, this, no that….

Hmmm….remember Bubbles??? Poor Bubbles

Here’s the thing:

As simple as it seems, it took me 4.5 hours to craft this offer. Yes – a ONE PAGE sales letter. There are tons of things that the untrained eye cannot see. There’s some NLP and psychological triggers scattered throughout… even the choice of envelopes and what I wrote on the envelope was a part of the master plan.

I’m a professional copywriter. I’ve been writing ads, sales letters, promos, etc for 20 years. I’ve learned (at great expense) from some of the top copywriters in the world. Not to mention the lessons I’ve learned from the dozens of ads that bombed.

There’s no way the average business owner is going to write copy as well as I do. Just as I will never do taxes as well as a CPA, I will never write code as well as a programmer… and…

I’ll never do Blaine-level magic tricks. (oh, how I wish I could)

Take Away/Action Item:

Unless you’re going to become a dedicated student of marketing, most business owners should never try to do their own marketing — leave it to the pros. You should have a solid understand in of what marketing is (and what it’s not), what works and what doesn’t, how/why it works, etc. Then hire the right professional that you feel comfortable with.

If you are going to attempt to do your own marketing (or anything of any significance like taxes, legal, etc), at the minimum, get guidance from someone who knows what they’re doing to offer you advice along the way.

I’ll borrow a line from the old Charter Peachford commercials…

If you don’t get help here……get help somewhere.

Antonio is an awesome dad, author, speaker and business strategist with Money Mouth Marketing, a results-based marketing firm. Money Mouth Marketing is the only firm in Georgia who guarantees a minimum 3x ROI for it’s clients (Yes, we’ve checked). To grow your busines, grab this free report on the 3 things you can do right now to generate immediate income: www.moneymouthmarketing.com/3x

About the Author

Antonio Thornton is a hilarious dad, mediocre Salsa dancer and business strategist with Money Mouth Marketing, a results-based marketing firm

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