3 Little Known Email Hooks That Can Triple Your Sales
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Justin is best known for helping marketers and business owners to convert their offers on cold traffic. He grew his own supplement company from 0->$23 million in sales in just under three years by focusing on cold traffic growth. After selling his supplement company in 2017, Justin now helps some of the biggest names with their marketing like Golden Hippo, Dan Lok, Agora Financial, V-Shred, 4Patriots, Mike Geary, Danette May, Six Pack Shortcuts, Natural Health Sherpa and more.
This is an edited version of the audio interview linked above.
Dee Braun: What is copywriting?
Juston Goff: Copywriting is selling the same way you would sell in person, online or in print, or however you want to define it. Whether that’s an email, a video sales letter, a text page, whatever it is – you’re taking through someone through the whole sales process. Grabbing their attention, getting them interested, telling them a story, digging into their pain points and their fears and their problems and their worries and their frustrations. Then, presenting a solution to that, showing the credibility and proof, answering their objections, and then kind of closing them on that.
That’s a shortened version of copywriting and the whole sales process. It’s very similar to how you would sell someone in person.
Dee Braun: Part of that process is what we all called the “hook.” Explain what a hook is.
Juston Goff: The hook is a unique angle that you’re using to grab someone’s interest. So if you’re talking about how to lose 15 pounds, that’s not really interesting. There’s no unique angle that’s not been heard 500 times before. But if you’re talking about the new “forbidden fruit” from the jungles of Bolivia, that’s helping people lose 15 pounds in three weeks, that’s kind of a unique hook. That’s a unique angle that they probably haven’t heard from her before. It’ll pique their curiosity enough to get them interested to keep reading.
Dee Braun: There are different kinds of hooks, aren’t there? There’s like the curiosity hook, the fear hook, the story …
Juston Goff: The three I hone in on tend to be the story, by far number one. There are a million different types of stories that we kind of dive into that. The second is tapping into some sort of topical news source that’s on the person’s mind reading it. The third is a contrarian angle. So everybody’s kind of talking about how great CBD is, and you’ve come out saying, “Here’s why you should avoid CBD.” Those are kind of the three angles I use when it comes to email copywriting.
Dee Braun: Is your expertise more on creatives or Landers or both.
Juston Goff: I have a very special place in my heart for email. I think it’s the best learning grounds for newer copywriters because you’re basically learning the entire world of direct response in a much smaller version. You learn everything from open rates too. Kind of unique stories and weird subject lines that get people to open and whether a fear angle works or whether a curiosity angle works or whether an emotional story works. Basically, everything that we do and sales letters, you do an email on a kind of smaller scale, and you learn exactly what works and what doesn’t work. That’s kind of one of the reasons I really do love email.
Dee Braun: What about congruence between the email creative in the Lander? Because I’ve seen where the email says one thing, but it’s almost like there’s a disconnect when you hit the Lander.
Juston Goff: I definitely tend to make sure that they are as congruent as possible. I have some friends who do some super weird curiosity angles and they tend to work, and they’re not even that congruent. I would highly recommend if your sales page is about a pain cream that can help you get rid of neck pain. In the email, you’re telling the story about how this woman tried 19 other pain creams, and none of them worked. And she was on her last kind of breath trying to figure out what to do and so frustrated. And then she came across this thing at a farmer’s market in Colorado and now it’s turned her whole life around. To me, the congruence should be there, but I do know some people that get away with not having it.
Dee Braun: What about things like long versus short form? An email, short-form tends to work better, but there are partners where their email is long, and for whatever reason, it converts.
Juston Goff: A lot depends on the Lander. If the Lander that’s going through is a really, really good video sales letter, maybe it’s a video sales letter that tends to convert off of like banner traffic and Taboola traffic. You know already that it doesn’t need as much of a presale in the email. In that situation, a shorter, more curiosity-based email could work really well. I’m actually much more a fan of long emails. In my experience, everything I’ve written tends to be pretty long. It goes back to the sales page. Also, you can’t fall in love with one over the other. It just has to go back to the data.
Dee Braun: Three little-known email hooks that can triple your sales – what are those, and why would they be so effective?
Juston Goff: The first one is story. Anybody who’s studied copywriting knows that stories work really well. The difference between a really, really good story and a mediocre story is like night and day in terms of conversions. I’ve seen this from testing.
One of my favorites is customer success stories. So you have a great customer, and you share their story. You want to shape it into a real story that has drama and curiosity, and conflict. When you do that, people get sucked in.
People are driven to read about what’s going on with other people. We love kind of reading stories about other people. If the person who’s the face of your product has a really unique, interesting story, that’s always a great one to use.
The second one is tapping into topical news that is on your prospect’s mind. This will vary depending on the niche and who your kind of customer is. I do a lot of work in the conservative news niche writing for health products, survival products. They tend to be sold to 60 plus boomers and seniors who are politically conservative; things that are on their mind are pretty obvious. If you read or listen to any like conservative radio or read conservative news websites, there’s stuff you could bring up over and over again. Throughout your email creative, relate it back to whatever you’re selling.
Another good example of that is the survival niche. Anytime something’s going on around the world, people get pretty nervous. Survival stuff tends to sell really well.
The third one is the contrarian. I have a buddy who has an offer in the women’s hormone niche. Everything right now is keto-based, and his entire email creative for it goes contrary to that. Here’s why you should avoid keto, avoid paleo, and avoid vegan stuff. Somebody who’s on an email list and everything they’re getting is like keto, keto, keto, or paleo and vegan. They’re seeing that stuff all the time – and now he’s saying, here’s why you should avoid that. That grabs your attention really quickly, and that gets opened.
Dee Braun: Is there a golden rule of copywriting?
Juston Goff: Don’t be boring. By far, the biggest mistake you can make from copywriting is being boring. You’re competing with Instagram, you’re competing with Facebook, you’re competing with Slack, you’re competing with them, checking their email, you’re competing with the mail showing up at the house. There’s nine million things you’re competing with. So if you’re boring, even for five seconds, it’s very easy for them to click away and go back to scrolling on Instagram.
Dee Braun: How do you know that you need a copywriter?
Juston Goff: The best sign is that you’re not making as many sales as you would like. If you have no sales experience – writing, copy, or face to face sales – you probably need someone who has experience doing that writing for you.
Dee Braun: How do we find one that is perfect?
Juston Goff: The best way is to ask someone who knows good copywriters. If I was going to hire a lawyer for something, lawyers know how good other lawyers are. Same thing for heart surgeons. If you went to a hospital and you talk to the nurses there, or you talk to other surgeons there, they know who’s the best surgeon in the hospital. They know the one who gets the best results and whose patients heal the fastest and have the least amount of complications.
It’s really about going to someone who has the knowledge already, could just shortcut it for you, “Here’s the two or three people you should talk to.”
Dee Braun: So, what have I missed?
Juston Goff: One other really good tip that can completely change stuff: The two most important parts of an email are the subject line and the first sentence.
The biggest mistake I see people make is they take a long time to build up to the best part of that email. The first sentence should be the sentence that just hooked you in and makes you want to keep reading. It shouldn’t be the sixth sentence down where you kind of start to get to the good stuff. This is a massive, massive mistake. Your first sentence really needs to pull people in, with curiosity or proof, even a combination. Or an interesting tidbit. That first sentence really needs just to hold people.
Dee Braun: What about the call to action?
Juston Goff: The more calls to action you have, the better. A lot of people will put one. From all my testing, I’ve realized that if you have two or three and then you’re going to see your click-through rate go up by, I don’t know, 30, 40 even 50%. It’s a big difference