From the category archives:


The subject line you use in your email is the second-most important factor in getting your email opened, read, and acted upon.

The most important factor in getting your email opened is what you put in the “From” line. Obviously, you can’t change that every time you send an email, but you can experiment with subject lines.

But what makes for a good subject line? And how do you write them?

To help you answer those questions, I’ve collected 45 of the best subject lines that have shown up in my inbox over the last six months and compiled them here. I’ve not only included the subject line and the date I received it, I’ve also added my comments as to why it works.

Even better, I’ve organized the subject lines into categories so it’s easier to compare subject lines that do the same thing — in different markets and to different lists.

By studying these subject lines and modeling them, you’ll be able to write more powerful subject lines that get your emails opened and read.

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A Copywriting Code member writes:

“I was wondering if you can offer some tips on how to write good openers. I already have some basic templates for writing openers but it would be great to read your take on it.”

First, in case you don’t know, an “opener” is simply how you open a sales letter or sales message after the headline and subhead. The opener is generally the first sentence or paragraph or possibly a series of two or three short paragraphs.

Next to the headline and subhead, how you open your sales message will have the largest effect on how well the piece works.

There are a few different approaches to writing openers, and we’ll cover all of them in this lesson. So let’s get started…

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Ever wondered exactly how to swipe a sales letter? If so, you’ll want to pay close attention. Because in just a moment I’m going to demonstrate HOW to swipe a sales letter.

But first, you should know: While I don’t generally swipe whole ads, you can actually write fairly strong copy by swiping.

When I say swiping, I don’t mean plagiarizing. Plagiarizing is stealing copy word-for-word; swiping is taking similar ideas, concepts, or copy structure from one ad and using them in another.

Some people take the idea of swiping too far. For instance, you would never want to take somebody’s copy and then just replace a few words here and there. This is basically plagiarizing.

Of course, it’s easy to create a list of “dos” and “don’ts” without ever fully communicating the right way to swipe a sales letter. With that in mind, I figured I’d actually show you three sales letters for three different products.

  • The first one is the famous Wall Street Journal letter.
  • The second one is a swipe of the Wall Street Journal letter.
  • And the third one is my swipe of the Wall Street Journal letter.

Each of these letters uses the same structure and some of the same selling arguments to make their case. Take a look…

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Learning how to write bullets may be one of the most important copywriting skills you ever learn. This is because bullets often do all the “heavy lifting” in a sales letter. They’re the words that penetrate your buyer’s natural buying defenses. They’re the words that sell.

I’ve heard many direct marketing experts explain the importance of bullets this way: “You want to write as many hard-hitting bullets as you can because sometimes just one bullet will persuade somebody to buy.”

I know this is true… because I’ve experienced it myself. I remember reading a sales letter for a Nightingale-Conant product. The letter was probably 80% bullets. As I read through those bullets, one or two of them really hit me. The bullets addressed something I really wanted to learn.

Then, as I kept reading, I began to think, “How could I not buy this product??” This is the best possible response you could ever hope for: When your prospect can’t imagine life without your product. He has to have it.

With that in mind, here are my methods for bullet writing. What I share here is not necessarily “the right way.” It’s one way. It’s the way I do it. So here it goes…

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Ever notice how most of the guys and gals who achieve extraordinary success speak at seminars on a regular basis?

There’s just something about public speaking that sets a person apart from all the experts who prefer to hide behind their laptops.

In this post, I want to share with you the copy elements that should be included in a sales letter to fill a seminar, workshop, or live event. I’m also going to share a few insights I’ve picked up over the years.

Whether you end up using this information to help fill your own event — or another person’s event — is up to you. Either way, it will make filling an event easier.

I’ll list out all the copy elements in just a minute. But first…

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