Ben Settle

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File under: Copywriting & Sales Letters, Email Marketing

One of my favorite lines about swipe files comes from the great Dan Kennedy.

In his 7-Figure Academy course, he said:


“If you use swipe files, that is fine, but don’t delude yourself into thinking you have any kind of mastery of copywriting if you have to use one.”

See some copywriter ex-spurts blatantly swiping?

Especially large swaths of copy?

And, word-for-word?

Amateurs at best, outright losers at worst.

So much so, if I see someone subscribe to my email list and the word “swipe” or “swipes” is in their email address, I immediately delete them from the list.

Why am I such a tyrant about this?

Because one of the dumbest things anyone can do is “swipe” email copy.

For one thing, it’s illegal and plagiarism.

But, also, because the best emails are heavily personality-based. You cannot “swipe” a personality. You can try, of course. And many dummies do just that with my emails all the time, despite me warning them of this very thing, and how it’s going to destroy their relationship with their lists. This was especially rampant with people on Twitter, from what I remember when I was on there.

On that note, below are some more words of wisdom on swiping.

Not my words, but an A-list copywriter you may never heard of named Doug D’Anna.

And, here’s what this great man of copywriting told me over 10 years ago:

“When I first started out I had a swipe file too. You know what the first thing I discovered was when I realized who Gary Bencivenga was and the game I was in? I threw everybody else’s piece away. Why would I do that? Because I might have been thinking that I was swiping something that was good or using a model that was a winner when it wasn’t. That was the first thing. You need to have control pieces in your swipe file. But, you’ve got to remember that control piece worked for that piece at that time in that market in that environment. So it’s really more of a case study to look at.”

That advice has been worth solid gold bars to me over the years.

And, may it be just as valuable to you, too…

Speaking of copywriting:

The January “Email Players” issue contains what I believe is the single greatest, most powerful, and most endlessly profitable copywriting technique ever invented. However, I doubt you will see it written in even the best copywriting books and courses, simply because, while it is thousands of years old, it is not something copywriters are likely to think to do, even if ancient merchants and sales people did (and some still do) routinely.

And it’s certainly not a technique you can swipe, even if you do see it.

Especially since swipers don’t have the intellectual capacity to apply it.

But people not afraid to think, and try something new?

And who can follow simply instructions?

Well, I foresee great things for them.

This issue goes to the printer soon.

To get it while there is still time, go here immediately:

Ben Settle

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

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