John Carlton Copywriting Tips: Grab Your Prospect


John Carlton’s hot seat is for Scott, who is selling a package that shows people how to get out of debt.

His headline reads “local mortgage broker finally pulls back curtain to reveal radical, yet proven secrets on how to use mortgages to combine all your debts into one and put an extra 0-00 in your pocket every month. Then pay off all your debts, including your mortgage, in as little as 5 to 7 years — automatically!”

One of the things he is not doing is identifying his target market. He is not identifying who he’s talking to. He may have done this because maybe he found a newspaper targeted to people who need debt consolidation or are into mortgages… probably not the case.

One of the things I would suggest that you do is identify your target market. A lot of times we do this using what’s called a superscript. A superscript goes above the headline. So if this was a regular headline, the superscript would go above it. The purpose of the superscript, or the first words in the headline, is often to identify the market you’re in. Unless you’re using Adwords and your ad says “attention bowlers…learn how to score your first 300 game this week” and sends them to this ad. You would not have to repeat “attention bowlers” again, you can get right into it.
If you’re not in that situation…where you know absolutely 100% that the person reading this is the right person, then it helps to identify the target market.

One of the easiest ways to do that is with a superscript, saying something like “are you mired in debt?”, “Are you looking for a way out of debt?”, Or something like that.

For more marketing and copywriting tips from John Carlton, go to

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