For every 10 marketing messages you put out, you’ll find one dramatically outperforms the rest…

And as much as experience helps, it’s almost impossible to figure out which is which ahead of time.

Your favorite idea?  Nobody responds.

The one you loathe but decide to test anyway?  That’s the winner.

Or, the other way around.

You don’t know until you test.

But it gets harder.  Because every market is a moving target.  Some, like finance, move every time the Federal Reserve meets, or for a thousand different reasons.  Others move slower, but still require you to keep moving with them.

And so if you want to create more breakthroughs, more often…  And keep up with your moving market…  It helps to get really serious about testing a lot of messages, fast.

But here’s the thing…

If you write longer copy, that can be a total pain in the butt.

When you’re talking 10,000-words per promo, it’s really difficult to crank that out for one message, then crank it out for another, then crank it out for another.

There is a faster, easier way to find your next profitable marketing message…

The secret is in short copy.

Now I’ll warn you.  What you’re about to hear is hard to implement from outside the company.  If you’re a freelancer, you’re going to have trouble getting this through, unless your client is doing it already.

But however you’re able to pull it off, I promise it will be valuable.

Most long copy promos for a product consist of two main sections.  There’s the pitch, and the offer.

The pitch is the section that sets up the sale, by explaining a big idea.

The offer is where you actually sell the product.

From promotion to promotion, the offers are largely interchangeable.  There may be new bonuses.  There may be slight changes.  But for the most part, the offer is consistent.

The pitch varies wildly, and is where you see the most changes.

The way most direct response works is by creating a brand new pitch and offer for every promotion you want to test.  But you don’t have to do it that way.

Here’s the alternative approach…

First, create a generic offer page…

This is where you sell the product itself.  If you’ll be switching up the offer for new bonuses, or similar small changes, designate a section of the page that can easily be changed for the multiple versions.

The idea of this page though is that it’s as reusable as possible.

You want as many different pitches as possible for the product to all be able to point to this same generic offer page, and not be too jarring.

Next, come up with all the pitch ideas you can…

Let your imagination go wild.  Try to identify every good big idea.

Brainstorm first, then narrow them down.

Ultimately, you can only test what you are able to write, so you’ll have to prioritize.

Start by writing 5 quick pitches in the form of advertorial-type ads that talk about and link to the offer in the end.

Yes, it will be a little awkward.  No, this won’t get quite as high of conversions as an integrated version with both pitch and offer.

But the point is to test more messages, faster.

Put these pitches online into whatever format makes sense.  It could be landing pages on your website, linked from ads on ad networks.  It could actually be Facebook Page Post ads.  It could be all sorts of different types of ad — whatever format works for the message and can be tested quickly.

Then, start testing them for clicks through to the offer page and conversions.  Try to track both, because clicks don’t always equal conversions, but a pitch with high clicks could also convert better with a more integrated offer.

As you’re running this first test, write 5 more quick pitches, to test in the next round.

And then put those online and start to run traffic to them.

Once you have the data, hone your best ideas…

There will be clear winners in this process.

You’ll have a couple pitches that get better clicks, better conversions, or better both.

Develop those ideas into a full promotion, with integrated pitch and offer.

Then test them against each other.

You’ll already know that you’re in the top 20% or so of all your ideas, because you tested ideas quickly first.

Once you turn the winning ideas into complete promotions, your conversion rates will likely go up.

And with that, you should have more opportunity to scale your best ideas.

Imagine testing your 10 best ideas in the next 90 days, instead of your one best idea…

That’s the difference in this approach.

This quick-iteration approach lets you see what actually works in the market, rather than relying on assumptions.

It helps you keep your finger on the pulse of the market.

And it gives you empirical data you can use before you actually dive in full-hog on any one idea.

Plus, it makes you a much better marketer.

In Jake Hoffberg’s Short Form Financial Copywriting Program, he teaches a similar method for starting financial copywriters.

It’s how he got started as a copywriter.  Not by writing long copy.  But by writing lots of short copy that got tested fast.

He told me he was getting test results on two or more pieces of copy every week, which gave him a very fast education in what actually worked.

And now he’s on one of the fastest trajectories to the top of the financial copywriting world that I’ve seen in a long time.

You can apply this in any direct response business…

You don’t have to be a financial copywriter like me or Jake.

You simply have to be willing and able to test a lot, and move quickly to test lots of ideas expressed in shorter copy.

Then, with data, develop your best ideas into your more standard format of promotion.

It’s a little different than how most marketers test.

But it’s also a proven method for creating breakthroughs.

Yours for bigger breakthroughs,

Roy Furr