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Marketing 101
Writing Ads

The most important aspect of any Internet business is selling your product, service or information. Without sales, no business can survive.

All sales begin with some form of advertising. To build sales, this advertising must be seen by potential, qualified buyers and cause them to react to your advertisement in some way. The credit for the success or the blame for the failure of almost all ads, reverts back to the ad itself.

Generally, the "ad writer" wants the prospect to do one of two things:

- visit the web site and judge the product, service or information for him/herself
- immediately order the product, service or information being advertised

The bottom line in any ad is quite simple: it is to entice the reader to purchase. Any ad that causes the reader only to pause in his thinking, to just admire the product, or simply to believe what is written about it - is not doing its job completely.

The "ad writer" must know exactly what he wants the reader to do. Any ad that does not elicit the desired action is an absolute waste of time and money.

In order to get the desired action from the prospect, ads must be written according to a simple "master formula" which is:

1) Attract the ATTENTION of the prospect
2) INTEREST the prospect in your product
3) Cause the prospect to DESIRE your product
4) Demand ACTION from the prospect

Never forget the basic rule of advertising copy writing: If the ad is not read, it won't stimulate sales; if it is not seen, it cannot be read; if it does not command or grab the attention of the reader, it will not be seen!

Most successful advertising copywriters know these fundamentals backwards and forwards. Whether you know them already or you are, just now, being exposed to them, your knowledge and practice of these fundamentals will determine the extent of your success on the Internet.


Classified ads are the ads from which all successful businesses are started. These small, relatively inexpensive ads, give the beginners an opportunity to advertise their product, service or information without losing their shirt if the ad doesn't pull or people don't break the door down with demand for what they are selling. What is said in a classified ad is the same as what is said in a larger, more elaborate type of ad, just in a more condensed form.

To begin learning how to write good classified ads, analyze some ads from about ten different e-zine publications - ads that you think are pretty good. Ask yourself:

1) How has the writer attracted your attention?
2) What about the ads keeps your interest?
3) Are you stimulated to want to know more about the product being advertised?
4) What action must you take? How strongly are you "turned on" by each of these ads?

Your next project is to pick out what you consider to be the ten 'worst' ads you can find. Read these ads over a couple of times and then, beside each of them, write a short comment why you think it's bad (i.e., lost in the crowd...doesn't attract attention...doesn't hold the reader's interest...nothing special to make the reader want to own the demand for action).

You probably know what is coming next. Yes, break out those pencils, erasers and scratch pads and start rewriting these ads to include the missing elements.

Once you are satisfied that the ads you have rewritten are perfect (well, is anything really perfect?...but, you know what I mean), go back to each ad and cross out the words that can be eliminated without detracting from the ad. Classified ads are almost always "finalized" in the style of a telegram. See example below:

Save on your clothing bills!
Reduced prices on every item we carry online!
Stock up now while supplies are complete!
Order today, Joni's Family Outerwear!

Save on clothing!
Everything bargain priced!
Limited supplies!
Hurry! Joni's Clothing!

It takes dedicated and regular practice, but you can do it. Simply recognize and understand the basic formula. Practice reading and writing the good ones and rewriting the bad ones to make them better. Practice, and keep at it, over and over, every day, until the formula, the idea and the feel of this kind of ad writing becomes second nature to you. This is the ONLY WAY to gain expertise on writing good classified ads. Practice makes perfect, they say! (I don't know who "they" are, but I think "they're" right!)



Marketing 101

Bulk Email

Promotional Resources & Tools


Writing Short Ads

Writing Letter Ads

Post Your Classified Ads

Submit Your Website

Self Promote Your Website

If you do not have submission software, I highly recommend SelfPromote as your URL submission service of choice.

All but one of my number one placements have been done through SelfPromote. Virtually NONE were placed through free services.

There are many reasons to use SelfPromote. Among them it is very cheap ($10.00 per year to submit up to 10 websites as many times as you want), very thorough and the record of your promotion is saved so you can post it rather quickly.

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