Production Steps Podcast Series

10 Research Tips For Story Copywriters

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Most marketers think they have a writing problem. “If only I could craft more compelling stories!” people will say.

Yes, the writing matters. But there’s good news: research matters more.

Once you master the art of ongoing research you’ll never suffer from writer’s block ever again. Listen now to learn:

  • Why ‘winging it’ is a recipe for disaster
  • Where to research ideas
  • How to capture them
  • How to organise them for fast retrieval
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11 The Timeline Technique

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The timeline is a simple, low tech planning technique for creating effective stories. If you ever feel intimidated telling a story listen now to learn:

  • How the timeline can act as a series of prompts
  • How the timeline can maximise drama and maintain interest
  • How the timeline can prevent your story from developing a dual focus
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12 The One Idea

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Learn how to connect seamlessly from your story to your sales message using the ‘one idea’. Listen now to learn:

  • How to ‘bridge’ between a story and your sales message
  • How to inverse the one idea to open up more connection possibilities
  • How to ‘seed’ the one idea for a seamless transition
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13 Email Draft Development

Please note the MP3 download link is in the top right corner of the player.

You’ve had an idea for an email. You’ve got a great story to tell. You’ve planned the story using a timeline…

But now you’ve come to actually write the email, the blank Word document of doom is staring you in the face.

How do you convert your timeline into a draft email, without pulling your hair out? That’s the topic of today’s episode. Listen now to learn:

  • How to expand your timeline into an interim first draft
  • How (and why) to check your first draft for contrast and drama
  • How to expand your first draft into a fully drafted email
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14 Intrigue and Suspense

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Learn how to lace intrigue and suspense throughout your stories to keep people reading. This episode includes a worked example and recent insights from Rob’s copywriting work. Listen now to learn:

  • How to lace suspense throughout a story – without making it too obvious
  • How to bring the reader into your story
  • How to let the reader walk in your shoes, feel your fears and share your peril!
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15 Using Conflict

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Learn how to keep people reading – by using conflict! Spice up your next marketing email with the three forms of conflict. Listen now to learn:

  • Why most of your conflict should NOT be physical peril
  • How to leverage internal dilemmas for added suspense
  • How conflict can help to upgrade your reader’s level of understanding about your topic
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16 Editing

Please note the MP3 download link is in the top right corner of the player.

Editing is a critical part of the copywriting process. But how much should you edit? Where should you put your focus for the biggest gains? Listen now to learn:

  • Why perfectionism is the enemy – and how to beat it
  • The two most important editing steps
  • How long to leave between writing and editing (and why you need a gap)
  • How to apply the 80/20 principle for efficient editing
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18 Core vs Current Stories

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Which stories should you tell in your marketing? Should you tell key events from your past? Or should you relate more everyday goings on?

This episode looks at the foundation of story selection. Discover the difference between a ‘core story’ and a ‘current story’, and the use case for each.

Listen now to learn:

  • How to identify your most emotionally compelling stories
  • Where to place each type of story in your follow-up sequences
  • Why a ‘current story’ can sometimes transition into a ‘core story’
  • How to come up with new ideas
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