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Copywriter, Peter Stone

(Rough language)

Richard wrote in an email to me, marked for public display,

Hi Peter, the "Martha" video is another good critique and very helpful. Thank you.

The real issue with this copy is macro rather than micro.

It doesn't give the reader any real kind of "slippery slope". It fails
to draw us in to a compelling story. The bullets don't intrigue. It
fails to create desire.

It shit becuase it doesn't give us an attractive identity? Who wants to be a disciplinarian? Am I the only one that finds the idea distasteful?

The copy doesn't sell me because I don't want to be like that.

That's too bad. The product is apparently a book to help parents
kids to follow the rules. But it doesn't sell me on why I'd want to
that kind of person.



Copywriter, Peter Stone


Well said.


Copywriter, Kevin Francis

Hi Peter,

Welcome back! I was wondering where you were.

Reading this letter and watching the crit made me realise just how powerful the "basics" of copy (the "formula" if you like) actually are. To me this would have been so much more effective with a decent headline and then starting off with "Dear Friend" and then a story lead.

As an aside, this letter looks like it was created from a "Fill in the blanks" type template. If that's the case it's a salutary warning of the limitations of these type of products.

Anyway, my 2 cents for what it's worth...

1. The Gary Halbert testimonial at the beginning. In this market, who cares? Much as I revere the late, great Sir Gary, I'm guessing most of the target audience won't know who Gary is (I choose not to speak of GH in the past tense!). It's a "Huh?" plus a testimonial upfront screams "Sales Letter".

2. No salutation.

3. Lose the "Opt-in" link to the free report. It's a distraction. The sales funnel should have the lead gen / opt-in before they get to this page.

4. I think this screams out for a story lead. Think Martha simply sitting down with a fellow parent having a cup of coffee and talking about her experience and explaining how she discovered this "Secret".

5. Bullets are very weak.

My comments might sound a little harsh and if Martha wrote the letter and it's a first attempt, well good on you Martha. However I think the letter is doing a great disservice to your product and your business.

Peter, as always your comments and "eye for detail" are most helpful and instructive.

Mant thanks!

Kevin Francis

Copywriter, Peter Stone


As usual, you offer a stellar commentary.

I refer to Gary in the present tense, too. Suffice it to say, his numbers are still in my phone's memory...



Well, since others have commented well on the critique, instead let me be the first to say...

"Welcome to Apple"

We've been waiting for you. :)

A mind like yours is a terrible thing to waste - on a PC.


P.S. Check out a free trial of Nova Mind. And for research try Devon Think. Or Circus Ponies Notebook. Surf and clip - all stored in files underheadings in a notebook format.

Sniff. (Dabs corner of eye with Kleenex).

Copywriter, Peter Stone


Thanks for the warm welcome. It's true, I drank the Apple kool-aid and, to say the least, without a bit of regret.

Thanks for the tips.


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