The Trash Can Copywriting Technique

I planned on strictly learning new information today, but I just got an inspiration and felt I should tell you about it.

Here’s the story:

I’ve been working some ridiculous hours lately and decided to give myself the day to kind of relax, sit back and watch some DVD’s (on copywriting, marketing, persuasion etc.) and audio’s.

Deciding it was time to take a break, I went down to go outside and grab the mail while I made myself some pizza.

Reading my mail while the pizza was in the toaster oven, I slowly moved my way over to the trash basket. When I got about 1/2 through my mail for the day, I realized something.

I’m doing exactly what I’ve always heard other copywriters talk about!

Have you ever heard anybody talk about how you need to visualize your prospect standing over the paper basket with the mail in their hand?

And how you need to somehow captivate them enough to actually read your mail and not throw it in the trash?

Well that’s exactly what I was doing, and the only piece of mail that got more than 5 seconds of my time was a check and a business magazine (both of which I’m obviously interested in).

Anyway, I just thought I’d let you know that if you’ve ever heard that phrase…they’re not lying! People really do stand over their paper basket with the mail in their hand.

Which brings me to a very important point…

How do you captivate someone enough to read your mail and not through it away?

And the answer is…tell a story.

You’ll notice at the beginning of this blog I told a story of a few minutes of my life. If you’re reading this still, you were interested by it – probably because you wanted to find out the end of the story.

That’s exactly what you need to do for your prospects. Tell them a story they’d be interested in hearing. Start the story off with something that will make them NEED to get to the end of the story to find out.

Make the story as captivating as you can, and make sure you give a “hint” to your product.

For example:

In the story you could explain a specific problem some person was having, then how they came over that problem and how your product helped them do it.

That’s a very general copywriting technique, but I wanted this to be short and it got longer than I expected.

I’m going back to watching my DVD’s – I’ll try to put up another post this week and go into further detail on storytelling.

Maybe I’ll even give you a nice “template” you can use…

Have a great weekend,


P.S. By the way, even online people have a “virtual paper basket” next to them. The rule applies to both online AND offline.

About the Author Jeremy Reeves

follow me on:

Leave a Comment:

Add Your Reply