Ben Settle

  • Book & Tabloid Newsletter Publisher
  • Email Supremacist
  • Alt-Copywriter
  • Software Investor
  • Pulp Novelist

Double Your Sales With Email

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If all the inflation and supply chains and wars and rumors of wars are nagging at your soul, making you worry, or even creating an outright panic… then maybe this email will help.

We shall see.

But following are some possible ways to help riiiide it all out:

  • Don’t launch any lower ticket new paper & ink informational products — the rapidly-rising printing, fulfillment (my printer just raised fulfillment charges nearly 10%, and it likely won’t stop there…), and shipping costs ain’t going to get any better, and probably will only get a whole lot worse.
  • Get as far away from big cities as you can — and if you stubbornly refuse to do that, at the very least get professional training on how to use a firearm.
  • Read the short book “The Dark Secrets of SHTF Survival: The Brutal Truth About Violence, Death, & Mayhem You Must Know to Survive” — especially if you are in a big city, if for no other reason it might persuade you to get as far away as possible from any big cities. Plus, it shows to an almost eerie level of detail how what the corporate media is doing right now is exactly what it always does right before civil wars happen.
  • Don’t sell prevention sell cures — i.e., sell solutions to a problem instead of selling solutions looking for a problem.
  • Read the book “You Have the Right to Remain Innocent” (if you live in the US) — pay attention to the chapter on the problems of taking the Fifth when talking to cops, government, bureaucrats, etc.
  • Read the book again — especially the last few chapters, and realize if your business pushes too hard against a sacred mainstream narrative you will almost certainly need the info in that book at some point.
  • Gird up thy loins for deflation — for when the enormous amounts of debt (the best analogy I once heard is, they aren’t “printing” money any more than Visa “prints” money when they give you a credit card and you use it) can’t all be repaid and is written off.
  • Respect the reason behind the “Cardio” Rule of Zombieland — “When the virus struck, for obvious reasons, the first ones to go were the fatties.” Many lessons and much context there, that have nothing to do with being in physical shape.
  • Stay off Facebook — and if you rely on that evil platform for leads, then that is a huge problem in and of itself, and should be dealt with immediately.
  • Turn off the news — would you spend even 30-seconds a day listening to a bald-faced liar you know is being paid to manipulate your thoughts, deeds, and hormones? Then why spend even 30-seconds a day watching the news?

Those are just a few ideas for riiiiding out inflation.

My favorite story about weathering bad economies:

Many years ago I (very briefly) had a job selling TV advertising.

The sales trainer told a story about when he was doing cold call selling during a really bad recession. Yet, in the office there was one guy who nobody considered to be that bright or great a salesman who was always coming in smiling and enjoying his job, and making lots of sales.

One day someone asked when he came in one day to work whistling and happy:

“Don’t you know there’s a recession going on?”

The guy’s answer:

“We’re in a recession?”

Not listening to the news is truly a life hack…

Okay enough of this.

If you want to see what I am doing in my own business each month to riiiiide out all the nonsense going on in the world see the Email Players Newsletter.

More info here:

Ben Settle

I ain’t exactly the world’s biggest Star Trek fan.

But we’ve been on a Deep Space 9 (in the shamelessly non-woke, non-PC corner of the Star Trek universe) binge on the bridge of the USS Settle. And if you’ve never read the Ferengi rules of acquisition you are truly missing out on some, er, gold plated advice that can be extremely helpful to your business. And probably put quite a bit more coinage in your business’ righteous, oinking piggy bank.

Admittedly some of the rules would get you thrown in jail or probably killed.

But many are surprisingly good & worthy of serious study & application to one’s business.

Like, for example, these:

#19 Satisfaction is not guaranteed.

#37 The early investor reaps the most interest

#40 She can touch your (ear) lobes (a pleasure center on the Ferangi body) but never your Latinum (money Ferengis most value)

#43 Feed your greed but never enough to choke it

#47 Don’t trust a man wearing a better suit than your own

#48 The bigger the smile, the sharper the knife

#59 Free advice is seldom cheap

#66 Someone’s always got bigger ears

#76 Once in a while, declare peace. It confuses the hell out of enemies

#79 Beware the Vulcan greed for knowledge

#82 The flimsier the product, the higher the price

#85 Never let the competition know what you’re thinking

#88 Vengeance will cost you everything

#89 Ask not what your profit can do for you, but what you can do for your profits

#89 Every man has his price

#104 Faith moves mountains… of inventory

#106 There is no honor in poverty

#108 Hope doesn’t keep the lights on

#117 You can’t free a fish from water

#141 Only fools pay retail

#147 People love the bartender

#151 Even when you’re a customer, sell yourself

#162 Even in the worst of times someone turns a profit

#190 Hear all, trust nothing

#193 It’s never too late to fire the staff

#208 Sometimes, the only thing more dangerous than a question is an answer

#216 Never gamble with a telepath

#242 More is good… all is better

#288 Never get into anything that you can’t get out of

#293 The more time they take deciding, the more money they will spend

#431 When the shooting starts, let the mercenaries handle it!

I highly suggest thinking long and hard upon these.

I certainly do.

And they ain’t no fluke.

More info on the Email Players newsletter here:

Ben Settle

If it jiggles it’s fat

About a month ago, I wrote this in an email:

“1. If it jiggles it’s fat (not just talking about Schwarzenegger’s take on weight loss…)”

To which the inevitable question came:

Hi Ben! These points are great. I printed this email and put it on the wall so I can read it again and again. Only point 1 is not clear. What do you mean with “If it jiggles it’s fat (not just talking about Schwarzenegger’s take on weight loss…)” ?

Physiologically it means the human body doesn’t lie to you.

Nobody being honest with themselves ever mistakes anything that jiggles for muscle…

From a business perspective it can mean a lot of things:

  • Excess words that needlessly bloat a sales page is jiggle
  • Time spent scrolling social media thinking you are “doing business” vs legitimately working in your business is jiggle
  • Possessions you don’t use, don’t need, and that clog up space/mind/time is jiggle
  • Employees (especially office politicians) who don’t earn their keep or create chaos is jiggle
  • Offers/products/content that cost more to produce than they earn (i.e., the rash of woke CW superhero shows that just got the axe, etc) is jiggle
  • Emails with no offer or don’t lead to a sale (i.e., so-called “good will” emails) is jiggle
  • Time spent tracking metrics you do nothing practical with is jiggle
  • Energy invested into virtue signaling on social media over taking action is jiggle (i.e., “I’m going to write a book!” vs actively writing the book)
  • And so on, and so forth

Anything that jiggles ain’t muscle.

Word to the wise and all that.

To subscribe to Email Players go here:

Ben Settle

1. If it jiggles it’s fat (not just talking about Schwarzenegger’s take on weight loss, applies to editing copy too…)

2. Only emailing your list when you “have something to say” means you don’t have much to say

3. Nobody emails enough — including me

4. You won’t know you’ve gone too far until you’ve gone too far at least once (hat tip to personal branding author Peter Montoya)

5. Playing your game will ultimately make you more successful than playing someone else’s game

6. You don’t have to end all your prices with a 5, 7, or 9

7. Testimonials are not always required for high response

8. You don’t always need to offer a money-back guarantee

9. The answer is always in the market

10. Kneeling only makes it easier for them to lop your head off

11. People donate to victims, but they don’t buy from them

Believe it or not:

The above are some of the most profitable insights I’ve learned, observed, or had to figure out over the years. And while some may not seem like “copywriting” at a glance, they all can apply to every piece of copy you ever write.

Go here to learn more about The Email Players Newsletter.

Ben Settle

A customer notices something in the milk ain’t clean:

I recently unsubscribed from an email copywriter’s print newsletter (I respect him a great deal and have learned a lot from him so far). But I wanted to go deep into your methodology without anyone else in my ear giving me conflicting data.

Another reason though is a bit more subtle, I felt like he copied you (or tried to at least imitate you) without giving the full credit or paying homage. I’d notice little things he’d say, do and teach and it seemed like he’d try to “be different” just for the sake of it, but really I know he got his knowledge from you.

YOU pay homage to Matt Furey and all the other greats who’ve helped you. You dedicated an entire podcast (and a book) to Matt Furey and suggested us to buy his products – which is great. I appreciate you being honest and non-needy. Yet I’ve never heard this guy “big you up”, even though I know he was an EP subscriber when he was new – I’ve seen his questions to you on your blog and his testimonial in your book.

And then there’s other details – like his print newsletter comes in an identical envelope to yours with the same layout that says “your paid newsletter enclosed” or something like that – it’s in a black box in the exact same place as yours. It’s the exact same address printed in the same place on the envelope as well. The whole thing just doesn’t feel right! I know this is a small detail and it might be accidental but I don’t like it.

And then he just imitates all of your product ideas! Like, it’s annoying to ME.

You got a list building product, he got a list building product. You got a “good enough” sales letter product, he got a “good enough” sales letter product. You got a print newsletter, he got a print newsletter. You got an email copywriting book, he got an email copywriting book.

Those little details, even if they seem stupid, put me off a little bit.

I really respect how you go about business, especially when it comes to paying homage to those who came before you. But then ur still original – as you teach in Brand Barbarian.

I just wanted to tell you about my experience as a customer of yours compared to my experience with others. And you win, by a country mile.

I’m starting to understand more and more what you mean when you say “think for yourself” – something as little as envelope design has repelled me (amongst other things). I’ve definitely learned from this and will apply it in my own business.

“Always copied, never duplicated” is just how it goes ‘round here.

Market grifting & offer cloning is just how 95%+ of direct marketers are “wired.” So I figure these guys doing it with my stuff literally can’t help themselves. And, as the above testimonial proves, they ultimately end up making me sales.

Maybe I should be thanking them?

Whatever the case:

If you want the real deal and not just a streaked copy, of a grainy fax, of a faded xerox, of a blurry scan, of a low res screenshot of something that kinda sort looks what I am doing & teaching, that’s what Email Players is for.

More info here:

Ben Settle

Many years ago, I remember reading a blog that had the “cure” for despair.

Or anxiety.

Or just plain old insecurity & uncertainty.

I’m writing “to” business people here.

But it is just as applicable to one’s personal life as it is to business.

Anyway, what is this cure?

Whenever you are worried about something — anything — and anxious ask yourself:

“Isn’t there something better I could be doing?”

No, I am not saying it will fix your problems. But at the same time, I cannot even begin to tell you all the immediate and long term benefits of doing this one simple thing that literally anyone reading this can do. God gave you quite a magnificently designed instrument when He gifted you that brain of yours. It’s an extremely powerful tool that is literally built for problem solving — on both a conscious and subconscious level. Great copywriters (Gene Schwartz, Gary Bencivenga, Dan Kennedy, etc) for example, will often teach how to use both to create sales copy, headlines, bullets, etc.

There’s nothing woo-woo or mystical about it.

It’s simply how your brain was designed.

And by asking it questions it will very often give you answers.

And so it is with this particular question:

“Isn’t there something better I could be doing?”

I don’t care if you’re worried about your business.

What that medical diagnosis will be.

Or even if that girl you like will text you back.

In many ways, these 8 words are the ultimate cure to Neediness, too. And very few things in this world — from a purely business & marketing POV — will kill your marketing response, influence, and ability to persuade like Neediness.


This won’t solve any problems by itself.

But it can get you moving forward and doing something, at least — instead of sitting around worried. And that movement very much can lead to even extremely dire problems solved, constructive use of time, debilitating anxieties relieved, and, yes, outright despair either destroyed or at least severely “blunted.”

Best part:

You can test it at any time and see for yourself.

It doesn’t “cost” anything.

You simply ask, at any time you are stuck, afraid, or anxious about anything:

“Isn’t there something better I could be doing?”

All right enough bull brain soup for the soul.

This mindset can do wonders for your copywriting too.

Especially when worried about having nothing to say, not knowing what to write in a headline, mind going “blank” for a good story, having a weak grasp on market research and the list goes on, and on, and on.

Copywriters are often an insecure, and worry-prone bunch.

Although few of them will admit it…

To learn more about the Email Players Newsletter go here:

Ben Settle

They clearly want one for some reason.

For example, not long ago, I heard from a Friday night troll who sounded like he had one drink too many, has his Bens confused, & can’t remember who to blame for his stupid decisions.

Here is what he said:

Aren’t you the Ben who started the “Book Club” that floundered and cost me a bunch of money years ago?


ps: I’m not really expecting a reply

Clearly he wants a reply.

If he didn’t he wouldn’t have said anything about a reply.

So I shalt give him one, but only to make an example out of him:

1. I never had a “book club”

2. It’s hard to imagine how a book club floundering would cost anyone money

3. A little detail goes a long way – and this lacks any details

Just a drive-by loser.

What could he have done to get a reply?

Well, first, he’d have to have more influence than I do.

I am not the world’s most influential guy, so this is not all that big a deal. But, I make it a rule never to engage with a troll — outside of mocking them publicly like this email is — unless their “reach” is bigger than mine.

What would be the point?

Secondly, don’t drink & type if you’re going to troll.

Wait’ll until the next day.

Then re-read the drivel you wrote.

Then edit it.

Then when you got it out of your system and wasted all that time delete it.

That’s my free advice to trolls.

And yes, I realize not a single one will take it.

To learn more about the Email Players Newsletter go here:

Ben Settle

In my humble (but accurate) opinion:

The single most important “foundational” program for business, marketing, success of any kind — that I wish someone handed to me, forced me to listen to “Clockwork Orange” style (even though it’s an audio…), and drilled into my head — is Earl Nightingale’s magnificent work:

“Lead The Field”

I listen to it at least once or twice per year.

And each time I get some kind of insight, idea, or strategy from it.

At the very least, I am reminded of something important.

Take, for example, a part in the program where he says he was vacationing at a California tourist trap town, and was sitting in a cafe and over heard some young people who were also visiting.

Earl overheard them say something like:

“Wish we could live here! But nobody will give us a job!”

You don’t hear Earl get angry in his programs.

But you could hear the utter contempt in his voice when he talked about how ridiculous what they were saying was, waiting for someone to “give them a job.” And he goes into a glorious tirade about how they didn’t need someone to give them a job. They simply needed to study the community, and think of ways to be of service to it. Like by doing a car washing & detailing business right on the peer where the tourists are hanging out in their dirty vehicles from traveling, etc.

He was all about service being the #1 key to success.

To shamelessly paraphrase the late Gary Halbert:

Service is like a giant battle axe cutting through the sea of humanity… separating businesses who constantly struggle playing the marketing game on “hard mode” instead of breezing through the levels and destroying their competition with ease by playing the game on easy mode.

Or in this case, maybe it’s more like “simple” mode vs “complex mode.”

Whatever the case:

Want to make more sales in your business?

Be of more service.

Want more testimonials?

Be of more service.

Want more clients?

Be of more service.

Want more JV opportunities, more deal, more professional connections, more leads, more opt-ins, more traffic, more interest in whatever you’re working on, or more of anything else you want, need, or desire in business?

Be of more service.

So simple.

So not very sexy.

Certainly you won’t hear any blue light specials pounding their chests about it in a mastermind where all people want to do is hear and share “tactics!” with each other.

But I’d argue service is the ultimate tactic.

No other tactic can get you the clicks, sales, response superior service can.

Not in the long term at least.

Anyway, end of PSA.

To subscribe to Email Players go here:

Ben Settle

Below is a snippet from the “Gran Torino” screenplay.

In the scene the old grouchy main character Walt — played by Clint Eastwood — is talking to the young loner teen Tao who he befriends about the valuable tool set in his garage, and how he got it.

WALT: What?

TAO: I can’t afford to buy all this stuff.

WALT: I didn’t buy all this stuff at once, blockhead. I’ve lived here for fifty years. A man stays in one place long enough he tends to attract a decent set of tools.

TAO: Yeah, but…

WALT: Look, kid, I think I know where you’re going with this. You don’t need everything to maintain a house. I’m going to let you in on a little secret.

[Walt rattles around his tool bench and slaps down THREE items in quick succession.]

WALT: This is for you. Roll of duct tape, can of WD-40, and a pair of vise-grips. Any man who’s worth a shit can do half his household jobs with these three things. In the odd chance that doesn’t work out, you can borrow something.

And so the script goes…

Here’s the point:

When it comes to starting, growing, and eventually conquering in the freelance game especially — copywriting, coaching, any other kind of service business of the sort — you don’t need to have every info product, every piece of software, every lead’s contact info, or every anything else to get things rolling.

Way back in 2002 I barely had enough money to buy a book on copywriting.

So I spent what I had:


Time to research who the best teachers at copywriting were.

I chose Dan Kennedy’s Ultimate Sales Letter book.

Cost probably $12 or so at the time.

I don’t really remember.

I read that book several times — many of those read-throughs in one sitting — and then I found a small forum of other online marketers and, following the forum’s rules, made an offer to everyone there for my services.

That got me something like 5 clients.

Not a single one paid me even a single penny, due to my inept negotiation skills.

But it did get me experience dealing with the realities of clients.

It did get me testimonials.

And, most important of all… it did get me working hard to write full length sales letters using nothing but what I learned from that one book, from which I produced a pretty decent newbie’s portfolio. And I took that portfolio to one of the freelancer sites (eLance, I think) and that got me my first for-real paying assignment that added up to $850 in fees. I took that money and immediately invested it in two higher-ticket copywriting products to further my education.

Then I took the money from applying that info to buy more info products & education.

Then I took the money from applying that new info to buy even more education.

And so on, and so forth.

Eventually I got into some JV’s that paid enough to wipe out my credit card & car payment, and be able to move out of the shyt hole state I’d lived in my whole life to somewhere more sane, as well as get my toe into some bigger doors in the industry.

Which brings me back to the above movie script:

When a man sticks with a skill long enough, he attracts a decent set of info products on the subject. This is especially the case with copywriting & marketing. Although the glut of crap products available today that weren’t around then makes discernment a lot more important than it was for me.

But you don’t need to start out with a huge budget.

You need only the copywriting equivalent of duct tap, WD 40, & vise-grips.

Then you work, invest, acquire more.

Work, invest, acquire more.

Work, invest, acquire more…

Over time.

And, yes, for the rest of your business career.

That is, if you want to be not just good but great at what you do.

More about the Email Players Newsletter here:

Ben Settle

A few years ago I was telling “Email Players” subscriber and the “founding father” of online advertising & email marketing as we all know it Ken McCarthy about why — barring a death in the family, and even that may not happen… — I refused to do any plane traveling.

There is a burnout aspect to it after the last few years.

Not to mention all today’s requirements to fly.

But, more than that, I always found airports only slightly less depressing than casinos.

Last time I flew was in October 2018, when speaking at AWAI’s copywriting bootcamp and then the great Brian Kurtz’s master class right after that, and it was intolerable.

Not just from the crowds.

But, the utter unsanitary conditions of even so-called “clean” airports.

I hear tell covid protocols has made places be cleaner, but who knows.

Anyway, Ken’s response (with his permission) is below.

It’s quite the lesson in and of itself for business people:

I’ll tell you, not only are they depressing, they are literally sickening – as are air flights and hotel rooms and restaurant food.

I can drive to Kennedy (LONG but doable) and I’m going to shoot for a place to stay with OPEN windows ideally where I can make some of my own meals.

I always found travel a little rough, but now that I’ve looked into the matter in depth I realize that when we go out into “the world” we might as well be crawling through a sewer.

In terms of toxins that are in the air, in synthetic carpets, chemical cleaners, air “fresheners” that are literally neurotoxins and on and on it goes. It’s quite a lot to process. Human beings aren’t built for it and in takes a toll.

You are right on the money to be living by the ocean and NOT traveling

And I can go into a lot more gruesome detail!

Some people depending on genetics, constitution, overall health – various factors – are a lot more impacted than others, but bottom line all these places – airports, airplanes, hotel rooms are absolutely ghetto-sewer shit.

It’s kind of a joke that we look at them as “luxuries”

Cap’n Covid or no Cap’n Covid:

This is why I can’t stomach even the mere brain fart of being a digital nomad. I just don’t see what’s so exciting, thrilling, fun, and great about traveling from one petri dish to another full of human stench, terrible hygiene, boogers, farts, screaming kids, nosey travelers, long lines for terrible food, sticky bathroom floors, overachieving (and overreaching) TSA agents, being forced to breathe my own CO2 for several hours, and other assorted horrors that airports & even hotels offer.

This why I’m far more content being a Baggins than a Took.

Adventures make one late for dinner.

And are highly overrated IMO.

All right, enough warm fuzzy feelings for the traveler’s soul.

It’s not all doom & gloom.

Because if you know what you’re doing, you can use plain, simple emails to make sales anywhere — at home, in an airport unfit for human habitation, or even in a dirty hostel in the middle of nowhere occupying the same dwelling with 5 total strangers all sharing the same bar of soap with a pubic hair stuck to it.

To learn how to write such emails, go here:

Ben Settle

Double Your Sales With Email

World Leader In Email Copywriting Education is Giving AwayTips For Doubling Sales With Email Right Now

Use the button below to open his daily email tips & a free digital copy of the prestigious Email Players newsletter

  • Book & Tabloid Newsletter Publisher
  • Email Supremacist
  • Alt-Copywriter
  • Software Investor
  • Pulp Novelist

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