Bootcamp 2016 – Live Blog!

DelrayBeachDate: October 19th through 22nd
Time: Real Time
Topic: All things direct response writing
Presenters: Clayton Makepeace, Brian Kurtz, Nick Usborne, and many more

From October 19th through the 22nd some of the greatest direct response copywriters and marketers will gather in Delray Beach, Florida to work share their knowledge and expertise with web writers and copywriters just like you.

And here in the Wealthy Web Writer Live Blog, I’ll be bringing you updates in real time.

So when Clayton reveals his method for writing winning headlines, you’ll hear about it right here.

And when Brian Kurtz shares the marketing insights he’s gleaned from decades of working in the industry, I will pass those along to you.

Each session, I’ll sit in and share the best quotes, the best tips, the best funny moments… all the highlights.

And in between sessions, I’ll be talking with the writers who are here finding out what their favorite takeaways are.

It’s a ton of fun, so I hope you’ll join me.

Plus, you can ask me questions in the comments and I’ll do my best find the answers direct from the experts. And one lucky commenter will receive free access to the Virtual Bootcamp recordings. Eligible comments are those that occur during the Bootcamp event, so meet me here on the 19th and comment often!

Wednesday, October 19th, 2016

It’s starting!!! I’m so excited. Katie Yeakle will be taking the stage shortly, followed by Alexander Green who is going to talk about why and how you can succeed as a copywriter.

I’ll be posting time-stamped updates to share their best insights, tips, and techniques, so refresh your page often.

Platinum members, make sure you’re logged in. Some of my updates are just for you.

5:46 pm

Katie’s talking about the connections you make with other writers. Other copywriters are your tribe. The connections you make with them are what can really ignite your career, keeping your inspired and motivated and on track toward your goals.

5:53 pm

Being part of the AWAI community is really an amazing thing. Katie is running through the list of copywriters and working writers who are here at Bootcamp, ready to share how they’ve built their careers and answer your questions. The list is long and the stories are… well, they’re heart-warming. As a Wealthy Web Writer member you’re part of that community. And I hope you’ll share your questions and your success stories in the comments over the next few days.

6:10 pm

Alexander Green has taken the stage. It’s my first time hearing him speak. I’m looking forward to it! Hope you are, too…

6:12 pm

“You have to think clearly, write plainly, and argue persuasively.” -Alexander Green

6:19 pm

Copywriting is a form of sales. And I love this quote from Mr. Green about being a master at sales:

“The difference between an average salesperson and a master salesperson is night and day. Master salespeople aren’t great talkers. They’re great listeners.”

6:35 pm

The first thing you have to do to be a successful copywriter is write. Write and write and write. You’re not a writer if you’re talking about writing or doing research or networking. Your a writer when you write.

6:50 pm

The Elements of Style by Strunk and White. Mr. Green says you should go to Amazon right now and buy it.

6:56 pm

We’re off to a strong start. I’m looking forward to being right back here tomorrow morning to share Carline Anglade-Cole’s secrets to writing great copy. I’ll see you then!

Thursday, October 20th, 2016

8:07 am

Good morning, Wealthy Web Writers! I hope you’re ready for our first full day. We’ve got lots of great people in the line up, including Carline Anglade-Cole, Brian Kurtz, Ben Settle, and more!

Before Carline takes the stage, here are a few things attendees are saying about Bootcamp over on Twitter…

8:22 am

Carline is always one of the most fun speakers to listen to.

Her first point is that when you land a project, you will feel fear. Don’t be afraid of being afraid. Embrace your fear and use it as a motivator.

8:29 am

When setting a deadline with your client, build in extra time because sometimes life comes up. Plus, you’re a freelancer, so you want to be able to take advantage of it when life comes up.

8:47 am

Carline is sharing all sorts of wonderful ideas for adding credible, entertaining, and absolutely convincing proof to your sales packages. One of her favorites is “results” proof. Look for ways you can visualize the positive change your product is making and then put those visuals in your package.

I’m not the only one who finds Carline fun to listen to…

9:41 am

Brian Kurtz is up next. A brilliant marketer and just a genuinely nice guy. I’m looking forward to what he has to say.

9:47 am

Brian starts out with a great quote for copywriters:
“Learn the rule like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.” -Pablo Picasso

10:01 am

Brian says every world class copywriter he’s ever worked with has had seven attributes and he’s going to share them with us today.

10:02 am

The first is hunger. You have to be willing to put in the work. And becoming great requires more work than becoming good.

10:13 am

Understanding the list gives you a valuable tool. If you send your offer to the wrong list, it will fall flat. The list is so valuable that Eugene Schwartz used to let Brian Kurtz pay him with names (a list) rather than dollars. Gene could market his books to that list and make much, much more than in typical fees. He understood the power of the list.

10:19 am

A great quote from Gene Schwartz:

“Breakthrough Advertising is not about building better mousetraps. It is, however, about building larger mice — and then building a terrifying fear of them in your customers.”

10:28 am

Develop an understanding of direct marketing principles and you will set yourself apart from most other copywriters.

10:34 am

Successful copywriters have humility. They have humility about their abilities. They approach their audience with humility, too.

10:37 am

Brian has just been amazing. Make sure you let me know what you think in the comments so that you have a chance to get access to the Virtual Bootcamp recordings. Then you can hear everything. And believe me, you want to hear this session… front to back.

11:01 am

I’m back and Ben Settle is on the stage. His first point is that when he started out he was a terrible copywriter and a terrible salesman. You can go from wherever you are at right now to earning a living as a copywriter. If he can do it, so can you.

11:07 am

One way to be a stronger marketer is to use the villains in your industry. Nothing grips people better and faster than a good, sinister villain.

11:13 am

Some of the best copy you write is the copy that makes your reader squirm. Tap into their pain. Tap into their discomfort. Get into detail. Your sales will go up.

11:33 am

Ben’s parting advice… have fun with it. If it isn’t fun to write about, find something else to write about!

We’re breaking for lunch. I’ll be back at 2:00 pm with Nick Usborne!

2:22 pm

We’re back and Nick is here to discuss the abundance of opportunities there are for writers right now.

2:24 pm

The amount of writing is going up, not down. For example, the Washington Post publishes around 1,200 posts a day.

2:33 pm

The reason you want to focus in on a niche or specialty that you love is that you are going to have bad days. Bad months. Even bad years. If you don’t love what you’re doing, getting through those difficult days becomes all but impossible. But… if you love what you do, you’ll be able to get through the tough times, stick to it even when it’s hard, and that will lead you to long-term success.

2:39 pm

The key to marketing yourself as a freelancer is not to market yourself at all but to find a message that you love. One that you are passionate about, and then market that message.

You’ll get a bigger response. You’ll get more yeses. And when someone does say no, they aren’t rejecting you, they’re just saying no to the message.

3:34 pm

Marcia Yudkin has taken the stage. She’s focusing on successful marketing for introverts. If you tend to the introverted side, she’s sure to have some excellent tips for you.

3:41 pm

One of her first ideas is to think about the size of group you like to work with. If you do better in a small group then a big group, then look for small-group ways to market yourself. Think about the situations where you thrive and look for ways to market yourself using those kinds of situations.

3:48 pm

If you are an introvert, consider your strengths. You are thoughtful, reflective, and a good listener. Those are all powerful attributes for a copywriter.

3:53 pm

Think about when you are your best self. Is it when you’re writing? When you’re talking to people one-on-one? Put yourself in marketing situations where you can be your best self. Your value will come through and you’ll land more projects… all without a lot of stress.

4:37 pm

If you’ve ever wondered, “What should I be charging for this?” this is the session for you. Ilise Benun is going to share her tips on how to have smoother, more confident pricing conversations. I’ll be sharing her best insights, so stay tuned!

4:45 pm

The first step to pricing yourself correctly is to start marketing yourself to the right people. Think about the kind of person, the kind of company, you enjoy working with and then focusing on building relationships with those kinds of people.

4:50 pm

If a prospect insists they want the best deal, clarify if they are interested in the best price or the best value.

5:13 pm

When you’re having the first money conversation with your clients, don’t ask for the budget. Many clients haven’t thought about it or they are hesitant to tell you. So instead ask for the general range. Is your budget in the range of $500, $5000, or $50,000?” Ilise says to use these specific numbers, and it will immediately help your client figure out where they land. And that will help you know if the project is a good fit.

Friday, October 21st, 2016

Another big day at Bootcamp!

But first, a quick note from one of your fellow writers:

9:16 am

Steve Slaunwhite is talking to us about B2B marketing. This is a huge opportunity and perfect for you if you’d like to write sales copy that is a little less intense than the typical long-form sales letter.

9:19 am

So, a quick definition. Business-to-business copy is any copy written for a business that sells to other businesses. B2B companies use a lot of copy, a lot of content, and the pay competitive rates.


B2B companies tend to have longer selling cycles, which means they need a variety of marketing materials: web pages, press releases, email messages, articles, blogs, white papers, direct mail packages, brochures, trade show materials, case studies, social medias, infographics… and that might all be for a single product. So one client can potentially send a lot, A LOT of business your way.

9:45 am

When you’re writing to a B2B market, there are a few important differences.

  1. You have to understand the level of knowledge of the person you’re targeting. If you talk down to your audience, you’ll miss the mark.
  2. Business buyers worry about professional embarrassment, so you need to back your claims up with overwhelming proof.
  3. Often when writing for B2B, you have to convince several different individuals before the purchase can go through. So you need to know how to target different people along the buying chain.

But the fundamentals of good copy still apply. Figure out your audience’s problem and offer a solution. Present the benefits of your solution. Show your unique selling proposition. Overcome objections. Include a call to action.

9:56 am

Some great advice from Steve for any writer: “Always be working at getting good at getting clients.”

10:23 am

And now it’s time for a little Clayton Makepeace. He’s one of the highest paid writers in the industry. And he says, “Believe me, if I made it, you can make it, too.”

10:27 am

In the last year, Clayton has been part of a mastermind group and he’s been working with test panels. From those two things, he’s learned a number of useful things about marketing and writing that he’s going to share today. He says, there’s no unifying theme… just a lot of good ideas that could potentially make you a lot of money.

10:35 am

Clayton credits Amazon with this. If you add these 9 words to your promotion, you’ll dramatically increase your response.

“You have plenty of time to review your order.”

People hesitate to click the order button because they feel like it’s a commitment, like that’s the moment that their money comes out of the account, and there’s no turning back. You take the pressure off, allowing them to move one step further in the buying process.

10:50 am

In online sales, cart abandonment, where people are almost ready to buy and then bail on you at the last minute — it’s a big issue. You can cut cart abandonment with a down-sell offer. If people click to leave their order, offer them a less expensive package before they go.

11:04 am

To get your audience’s attention in a subject line or headline, put together two conflicting thoughts. Clayton’s example: “Zap belly fat with French fries and a shake.” Your prospect can’t help but keep reading. He needs to know what you’re talking about.

11:11 am

As yourself “What must my prospect believe to make this purchase necessary in his mind?”

Heather Robson

Heather Robson

Managing editor of Wealthy Web Writer, Heather has over ten years of content marketing and development experience.


  • These points are really resonating. I’ve been reading so much recently about “being human” in our interactions online. Understanding your list and knowing your customer will direct and focus your work. When we can relate to the customer, through stories and and the desire to help them, we will be more successful — to the client and in our careers as copywriters. Thanks for these updates!

  • Questions for Nick: Does he see new trends in social media (I saw a recent article on Buzzplant that there are now more daily active users on Instagram and Snapchat than Twitter.) and web copywriting? Any SEO changes we should know about? Thanks!

  • Thanks for doing this Heather. Do you have a list of Brian’s seven attributes of a successful copywriter?

  • Hi Heather

    I’m enjoying checking in everyday and reading your Live Blog. There are lots of gems information and inspiration that are useful for us even though we’re not there.

    Thanks for all the updates and keep them coming.

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