How to be great (The Story Of Telling)

Dr Dre and Jimmy Iovine don’t make great headphones because they know the most about headphones. They make great headphones because they understand how music should sound and more importantly, they know that people want to feel, not just hear when they listen to it.

“The right song at the right time will give you a chill. Make you pull someone close. Nod your head. Sing in the mirror. Roll down the car window and crank the volume to the right.”
—Ian Rogers, CEO Beats Music

Our best ideas and innovations are not born from simply wanting to make them great.
We make them great by understanding who they are for and why they should matter.

Understanding what makes people tick and why is far more valuable than we think.


How To Be Great | From The Story of Telling


Sky high your click through rates with these quick and easy tips


Quick post here for you.

…its a kind of checklist to help make sure your copy is getting the most possible clicks.

Each of these tips are extremely effective. So put them to good use in your emails, sales letters and general copy.



To it!

If the reader doesn’t click the links in the email you can’t sell them anything.

But most people are bombarded with email daily, which results in them just scan reading the copy.


  • Keep your email short and sweet
  • Design them so the more important elements stand out
  • Use bold text for benefits and power words
  • Use 1 or 2 sentence paragraphs
  • Use special characters to separate important text from the rest
  • Use extra white space for important text from the rest (and call to action links)
  • Front end load your sentences with benefits and power phrase

And I’m guessing you really want them to click that link,to share that post or to take some form of action.

So try..

  • Using strong calls to action in your emails – but don’t use too many! ideally just one.
  • Putting the benefits in the text of the link
  • Including the same link twice (once near the top of the copy and once at the bottom)
  • Using first person in your anchor text e.g – “give me the ebook”
  • injecting scarcity – an offer isn’t an offer without a deadline.

Clickety click!

Hope you give at least a couple of these a try!

They may be very simple, (and easy to apply)  but its the exact techniques the pros are using.

The above help increase click through rates and make your copy look incredibly enticing to read.

So all the best,



GEORGE: I can’t get it out of my head. I just keep singing it over and over. It just comes out. I have no control over it. I’m singing it on elevators, buses. I sing it in front of clients. It’s taking over my life.

JERRY: You know, Schumann went mad from that. He went crazy from one note. He couldn’t get it out of his head. I think it was an A. He kept repeating it over and over again. He had to be institutionalized.

GEORGE: Really? What if it doesn’t stop?

JERRY gestures “That’s the breaks.” – Seinfeld “The Jacket

I won’t say that I present the picture of mental health or anything, but most people would be surprised to find out I harbor a habit that hints at deep insanity.

I listen to the same song over and over again. Alone in my office, or on my iPod, or on my phone, I play them on repeat over and over and over again. Loudly.

In my iTunes library there are certain songs of an embarrassing nature that I have played more than 300 or 400 times in a row (that is a full 24 hours each). I’ve gone through so many computers over the last few years that I don’t have an accurate tally, but if I were to add them up, the numbers and the songs would seem preposterous, even to me. They are my version of the backyard shed, covered in incomprehensible gibberish in A Beautiful Mind, or the wall in Carrie Mathison’s apartment after a manic fit. And then I wake from my stupor and discard the songs like used condoms and pretend it never happened.

As a result, I no longer enjoy “music,” a fact that the 16-year-old version of myself–the one who was in a band and had hard drives full of rare music–would have found unthinkable. God knows, I never thought I’d find myself 142 listens in on a Taylor Swift song on a Tuesday morning.

But there is a method to the madness. I found that this secret habit has been the fuel for my creative output.


See, part of writing–or really any creative endeavor from brainstorming to marketing–requires tuning everything out. There are a couple ways to do this. You have your noise canceling headphones or ambient noise machines. You can put your phone on “Airplane Mode” or tell everyone to leave you alone.

The problem with these reductive techniques is that they leave everything a little empty. In my experience, it’s not about quiet, it’s about finding your zone.

I think melodic music, played on repeat, puts you in a heightened emotional state–while simultaneously dulling your awareness to most of your surroundings. It puts you in a creative zone. The important facilities are turned on, while all the others are turned off.

Sometimes “good” songs can help you with that. But Bruce Springsteen only has so many songs that work for this (Try “I’m On Fire”). You exhaust them soon enough and have to start listening to songs on the Top 40. And you stop caring who wrote them–as long as it brings you closer to that state.

Michael Lewis (Liar’s Poker, The Blind Side, The Big Short) has spoken about this too. Writing a book–or really any major creative project–puts you in an “agitated mental state.” It’s hard to sleep, it’s hard to concentrate, it’s hard to be present in everyday. But you can’t afford that when you’re actually working. He fixes that by doing the following:

I pull down the blinds. I put my headset on and play the same soundtrack of twenty songs over and over and I don’t hear them. It shuts everything else out. So I don’t hear myself as I’m writing and laughing and talking to myself. I’m not even aware I’m making noise. I’m having a physical reaction to a very engaging experience. It is not a detached process.

You might ask, can you accomplish this by listening to music like a normal person? I would have thought so too, but the answer is no. Repeat on the same song or the same two or three songs allows the songs to fade into themselves–to become a more or less a continuous stream. The reason I gravitate towards radio singles is that they normally have big, catchy choruses. The idea is that after enough listens to song becomes a perpetual chorus.

Time stops. Distractions stop. Extraneous thinking stops. (Proof of which is the fact that you’re not bothered by the fact that the song is looping every three minutes and thirty seconds.)

All that’s left is the work at hand. All that’s left is that little voice inside your head that you’re attempting to hear and translate onto the page. All that’s left is the book or the paper you’re reading. All that’s left is problem you’re trying to crack when you go for a walk. All that’s left is the workout you’re trying to complete.

The bullshit–well, it disappears for a fleeting second.

Creative work isn’t about pleasure. It’s not always fun. It’s about reaching something inside yourself–something that society and everyday life make extraordinarily difficult. This is one way to do it.

The fact that it basically ruined music for me is a cost I am willing to pay. I’ll take my fix from anyone–and I’m not ashamed to say that I have. Even if that means I have to listen to the Black Eyed Peas or some other god-awful group.

Every writer (or painter or thinker or adman) finds their own way. This is mine. Maybe it will work for you. Or maybe you’ll try it and never look at me the same way again.


Ryan Holiday – http://www.ryanholiday.net/

3, 2, 1 …


So have you heard the marketing goo roos say this lately? – Your website has 3 seconds to get the customers attention. 

Thats 3 measly seconds.  To get them interested. To get them to engage with your content. 

Otherwise they are gone. Gone to look at the billion other things there are to do on the internet. Like watching this hilarious basset hound clown car video. Adorable!

So in these 3 seconds your website should answer 3 questions for the visitor.

They are;

  1. What is it?                                             What exactly is your business? Can it be summed up in a sentence or logo?
  2. Who is it about?                                   Is it just a profile about yourself or is aimed at how your business can help the customer?
  3. What do I get?                                      If theres nothing of value offered for the customer, then whats the point of them staying?

When your homepage answers these 3 crucial questions it gives the visitor reason to be on your website – reasons to stay.

Which was the last site you visited where you found yourself instantly interested, instantly hooked shortly after arriving. Where you immediately knew what the website was all about and rushed to enter your email and opt in? Study it, and see how they achieved this.

Start with the results your customer wants and what they get from you and then put this at the front of your marketing. 

Perfect this – and then after 3 → 2 → 1 you wont lose vistors to hilarious dog videos. You may have a new subscriber, a new fan, a new customer.

3 Silly things that make subject lines scream “you should really open this email!”

1) The use of digits – “Because digits stop wandering eyes.” So how many times have you seen subject lines with things like;

“7 ways to boost your brain power”

“3 steps to a great night sleep”

“10 facts about sunflower seeds..”

Countless times I imagine.

Thats because numbers often represent facts – us humans LOVE facts.

Digits also catch the eye. So for anyone scan reading your email subject line, using a number can stop them and encourage them to read on.

If anything, this technique is overused. I know I know I used one in the title of this post… but its hugely effective so it will continue to be used. And used….and used.

2)Create curiosity – In a world where we are bombarded with email, its a must that you give your recipient a reason to open your email. Make it stand out. Make sure it doesn’t just become another SWIPE – DELETE.

One way to avoid the pit of rejected emails folder is to give them a reason to open your email in the first place. Something that will make them go “hmmmm..”

You can do this by ;

– Simply telling your reader whats inside your email – and why they need to read it.

– Pulling an interesting quote or message from the content of the email and using that as the subject line. The best example I’ve seen of that today was from the “email goo roos” Ben Settle – In an email where he his promoting his latest podcast, he crafted the subject line “My goal was to give him a heart attack” Now I just had to open that sucker up and find out what the heck he was on about.  Of course the quote was related to his podcast – so I then went on to listen to that. Curiosity is a powerful psychological trigger.

A popular technique lately to really fire up the curiosity within the reader is to give them an added incentive to read on. For example – “My house seems so boring after seeing these 33 awesome things, I want them all, especially number 5”

That last little bit – “I want them all, especially number 5” …How can you not wonder what number 5 is now if its the most awesome of the 33 awesome things? When used in the right place, an extra little incentive can be very effective.

3) No capitalisation. This being the silliest of all the silly things that make subject lines scream “you should really open this email” is something I have only just started to notice.

When we receive an email where each word starts with a lower case letter – it gives the message a much friendlier and less “corporate” look.

My theory?

We get so much email from large retailers and online stores (most who don’t have a clue about effective email marketing) whose emails are written in such a professional manner – just like they are writing to a large crowd of faceless people instead of like they are speaking to a friend (how they should be written)

They will use proper English, no slang, no personality, no human touch.

Each Word In The Subject Line Will Be Written Like This.

So when we receive a message without this “professional business- corporate like look”  its refreshing.

It reminds us of email exchanges between our close friends.

If you have ever signed up to the world wide successful online marketer Brendon Burchard you would see that nearly all of his subject lines are like that. No capitalisation. Just an enticing sentence, written like it was only sent to you.


Bonus tip – There really are no rules. There will alwyas be diffrent trends – the latest thing that works. So experiment. Be a rebel and try something new. Dare to be different!




Your 4 Types Of Customers – and the simple way to attract more of the 3rd type


If like me you work or have worked in a retail store, you probably know how fascinating (and often predictable) customers are.

You would have seen and interacted with countless customers day in and day out.

Being at the front line of service for your employer gives you a great view of who exactly is walking through the doors.

….And really, there are only 4 main types of customers. Each which you can uniquely cater towards.

Here they are;

1. The Impulse customer.

These are the people who cant resist a bargain – or simply cant resist to buy stuffs! Create beautiful looking displays for this type of folk. Put your most interesting products in the space where your customers queue – preferably something they can easily pick up and explore, something thats too irresistible not to add to their basket.

2. The wandering customer.

Now these often create the largest amount of traffic for a shop – but the smallest amount of sales. Of corse you will see a rise of wandering customers at different times of the year. The location of your store will coincide with the amount of wandering customers you receive.

Wanderers have no real reason to be in your store, they may just be killing time, or meeting a date. Yet Its still very important to provide these customers with excellent service and hope they are also impulse customers.

3. The loyal customer.

God love the loyal customer. You should keep in regular contact with these. Through email/post/phone. These are the ones who can and should influence your buying and merchandising decisions.

A good idea may be to set up a loyalty scheme. Have tailor made –  exclusive offers only for them to let them know how cherished they are. Even a simple thank you note will go a long way.

4. The need-based customer

The most common type of customer aka -the need-based customer  would have found your business through specifically requiring a product -whether it be through referral or a good ol’ google search.

This group offer the greatest opportunity to grow into loyal customers.

How is this done?

By providing them with such an outstanding service that we will be sure to return.

Because people will always favour the place where they received the best service – even if it is a little more expensive then alternatives.

So strive to deliver an excellent service, go the extra mile, get them to opt in for future offers and let them know about the other products you sell.

A satisfied customer can easily become a loyal customer.

Robin Sharma’s 8 steps to Elite Performance

Email email eeeeeeeeeeemail! Sure have been getting alot of email lately.

Its normal for this time of year - what with so many online courses from all sort of gurus and experts now enrolling for their premium teachings.

You know how it works - they send you Content. Content. Content . Offer/Sale.

And thats great because its highly effective and generous of them. 'Cuz into todays economy "to sell the house, you have give away the back garden for free! "I cant remember where I heard that but I thought it just sums up the latest selling strategy by entrepreneurs and even big brand companies perfectly.

So with all the amazing valuable (free and premium) content available to us at this time of year, one person I think you should definitely be taking notice of is Robin Sharma. He just finished up his "content.content.content.Offer/sale marketing strategy. And to finish up and really get the prospect motivated he gave away 26 + minute video titled "The First Day Of Your Best Life."

Here he describes 8 ways of living a ridiculously successful life! This video is pure gold and I cant believe he gave it away for free and it is STILL available to watch online - for how much longer though I do not know?

So watch it whilst its still up because it really is a masterpiece. You can just sense the amount of time and effort he put into it to make it as valuable and inspiring as possible! Heres the link - http://www.robinsharma.com/academy/yabyy/the-first-day-of-your-best-life/?utm_source=TW-DrsOp-Txt&utm_medium=Twitter&utm_content=012314&utm_campaign=YABYY14

Oh and if you have not got half hour spare to watch the video - I have shared my notes below. I hope they help!

8 Steps To Elite Performance
1) Develop your reality distortion field - GO BIG! Sell yourself on your vision and your goals for the next 12 months. 2) Find your Sistine chapel -the secret of passion is purpose - once you know your mighty why - the "how's" just begin to show up 3) Leave the echo chamber - leaving the echo chamber means you stop being an echo of the beliefs and the lives of the people around you - that you have the bravery to cut free from the herd, and start thinking for yourself versus buying into the definitions of success and achievement that society has sold you, as the way to happiness and a life of meaning. To have the results very few have, you must begin to live as very few do 4) Join the generosity economy -become a giver, not a taker. Our lives come alive when we give. 5) Walk with giants - we become our associates - if you're the most intelligent person you know, then it's time to know new people. Start spending time with people whose lives you want to be living 6) Protect great days - if you commit to achieving 5 little goals each day for 30 days that = 150 little wins within a month - 1850 little goals in a year! So protect great days by foregoing about doing grand acts of achievement, and, instead among each of your 24 hour gifts a splendid symphony of super-tiny successes - your days are your life in miniature 7) Get smarter by getting fitter - real wealth is health. Making a commitment to getting into the fittest condition you've ever been in is a complete game - changer. Exercising every morning releases BDNF - brain-derived neurotrophic factor. You will have more drive, grip, energy and intelligence 8) Become a serious investor in you inc - make a serious commitment to investing in your personal growth. The fastest way to double your income is to triple your investment in learning and self improvement



The Number 1 mistake businesses make when using social media


When you get a good idea. The type you know will get your audience talking. You plan it. You write it. You perfect it.

Its finally ready to unleash like a marketing fireball.

You hit post. You hit publish. You hit send. BOOM!

“Surely putting my best content on all the social media platforms I on will get it out there to the masses…right?”

You would think so. But unfortunately no. Putting all your content on every social site you can think of just isn’t as effective as we would all like to think. (sad face)

The fact is that by using this technique – all it does is cause your content to get lost in the already heavy populated world of social media.


To succeed in your chosen platform(s) you must blend in. That is to say – use the popular style/trends of that site.

Can you imagine seeing a piece of well written sales copy on a tumblr blog? (That thought makes me cringe!) The copy would just get lost. It isn’t what you see on tumblr and is not what tumblr is widely used for. Readers will instantly scroll past it (or give it a quick look of disgust) and then carry on their internetting…

So here are 2 easy to use guidelines for fast-track social success!

1. Spot the popular trends on your chosen site – How were they executed? 

2. Think of creative ways to get your message across using these styles/trends.

…Pretty darn simple right?

So lets say you were ready to promote your latest video series.

Instead of throwing your content out into the world (and hoping something would stick?) You could first, post a preview of your series on Youtube (that ones pretty obvious)

Then create a GIF of some of your footage on tumblr.

Next, you could create a Vine using some of the “behind the scenes” clips you have.

Then you could hold a Q & A about your new content and product on twitter.

And of course you can go on and on and on…but I would recommend focusing on just a few social sites – especially for newbies – maybe even like 1 or 2. Its better to have a real impact in a couple, then just barely scratching the surface of many!

So try this approach – It may take a little more time and a little more creativity – but it will stop your content getting lost and going unnoticed.