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Kevin Francis


Are you trying to scare off competition? LOL!

I came across this course a few months ago and I think for some new copywriters this is a great idea. It's a great example of a kind of "hidden" area within the business.

My interests lie elsewhere. But for someone who perhaps isn't ready to take on more traditional work, this could be just the thing.

Kevin Francis

Peter Stone


What can I say, you've uncovered my motive -- busted!


Jay White

Hey Peter--Jay White here from Catalog Copywriting Secrets. Thanks for the great writeup about catalog copy.

That's where I cut my copywriting teeth, so to speak. I wrote for catalogs for many years, and still do for select clients. It's a very underserviced niche that's growing my HUGE leaps and bounds (over $200 BILLION in sales by 2010). Which means more opportunity for us. ;)

But what I love most is, you don't get bogged down in one subject for weeks on end, trying to pull a 20 page sales letter out of your keister. You get to write a lot of little "letters" about some really cool stuff. So it never gets boring.

One of my regular clients is a high profile catalog that markets to airline travelers (hint hint). Talk about fun writing...one minute it's a catbox that cleans itself, another it's a high tech coffeemaker, another it's a motorized pool toy...no boredom here!

And what's really cool is that, once you get the hang of it, you can crank out one of these copy blocks in about 30 to 45 minutes. An hour max. Then you move on to the next one.

I will tell you, though...your $300 a block number might be a little high. But still, even if you're only making a measly $50 a block and you write a block every 30 minutes, in 5 hours you've had a $500 day. And you still have most of your day left!

Do that for a regular workweek and you pocket an easy $2500--for part time work. How does that sound?

Pretty sweet deal, if you ask me...;)

Peter Stone


I hope you have a sense of humor and don't take yourself too seriously...

Oh fer crap sakes -- Excitement from writing about a high-tech coffee maker one minute and a motorized pool toy the next. I can hardly stand it. Stop! My heart...

Ok, Buddy, I'll stop with the shelacking.

My readers tend to live at the sophisticated end of the spectrum if naivete lives at the other end.

They don't pull sales letters from any orafice.

And they appreciate what it takes to accomplish the near-impossible feat of writing a letter that's good on all levels.

Admonishment? No, Jay. Coaching. So you can have a shot at selling my blog readers. Buy the course, make $500 and toddle off to the beach, won't cut it, fact or not, unless you prove that's the common experience -- typicality of claims and all that.

Now, just to show you that I'm not the prick I may seem to be, send me some real discussion about the learning curve and actual income readers can REASONABLY expect given a stated time frame and I'll hang it.

Nice meeting you, too. (I mean it).


Jay White

Point taken, Peter. And yes, I have a terrific sense of humor, so no offense.

It's true that catalog copywriting may not be for everyone. And that's fine. But it's a great way to add clients and income if you're A) just getting started in the biz or B) needing a break from the sales letter thing.

Some people may not get a kick out of writing for cofeemakers and pool toys. But in the same vein, I'd rather shave my own back then write a for a financial services product.

Not that I have a hairy back.

If your readers are more sophisticated and revel in the often grueling process that comes with writing a sales letter, that's great. My hat's off to you--in a big way. I've just found that there's a fair number of copywriters who feel differently. So I'm offering an alternative.

As far as a learning curve, it's really just taking what you already know about writing direct response copy and shaving it down to 75 words--without losing the punch. Some people have a knack for it, others struggle. But it's definitely a skill you can master.

Income expectations? I've had jobs that paid a few hundred and jobs that paid many thousands. So like anything else, it varies. Some catalogers want to lowball you while others will gladly pay for good copy. (Sound familiar?) The key is to find the gold nuggets and give them something good. And they'll come back again and again.

I believe if you have talent, killer samples, and the drive to market yourself relentlessly to the catalog world, there's no reason why you can't make six figures a year. And with about 11,000 consumer catalogs and 6,000 B-to-B catalogs in the U.S. alone, so that's a nice pool to pick from.

Again, it's not for everyone. But if you're in Groups A or B above, I think it's worth looking into.

Hairy back or no hairy back. ;)

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