When I was very new online, someone sent me an email that really left me puzzled.
The letter writer was an established business coach, developing a new class on copywriting. She wanted examples from real business owners so she could demonstrate the concepts.
I understood where she was coming from. It’s easier to work from real examples, rather than make them up from scratch. And it’s easier to hold your audience’s attention when you work with good examples.
But what I didn’t get was, “Why should I do this? Won’t people think I’m stupid? Won’t they laugh at my mistakes and vow never to hire me?”
What confused me, even more, was the number of established business owners who stepped up and volunteered. They were famous, in our little world. Why were they putting themselves out there?
After I’d been online awhile longer, I realized what was happening. I regularly invite my own subscribers, clients, and prospects to volunteer their drafts for public review,
Being reviewed can help your business in these 3 ways.
(1) You’re borrowing credibility.
When submitting some copy for a public critique, my first thought was, “OMG — all those people! They’ll see my mistakes.”
But soon I looked for well-attended programs to submit drafts for review.
After all, when lots of people attend a course or webinar, you can be sure the presenter has achieved a certain level of credibility — maybe even fame. You now become associated with that person. Your story gets heard by a large, responsive audience.
(2) It’s free PR: Your audience learns a LOT about you (in a good way).
Being in the “hot seat” takes getting used to…but the rewards can be huge.
When the course leader reviews your copy, she’s totally focused on you. She usually begins with a series of questions like, “What’s your story? Who are your clients? What makes you special? What are your strengths?”
More than once, I’ve presented a sales letter for review…and someone who was listening turned into a client.
A “hot seat” usually takes 10–15 minutes minimum. That’s more time than most people spend reading your carefully-crafted sales letter.
Your name and your offer will reach them on a deep level because they’re not just listening or reading: they’re processing the information. That means it’s more likely to stick.
(3) You get top-quality advice for no cost (or for a fraction of what you’d pay for a one-to-one consultation).
When I first submitted a piece for a group “hot seat,” I realized the amount of feedback would be much smaller than what I’d get in one-to-one coaching. But I was surprised to discover that the quality of advice was very high and the feedback was extremely valuable.
What I hadn’t realized was this:
The program leader wants to impress everyone who’s listening. So she’ll take the time to prepare solid feedback. She knows some people in every audience will be extremely knowledgeable and she doesn’t have much time. So she has to hit the high points — the tips that will have maximum impact.
And as a bonus benefit…
If you’re thinking of hiring a copywriter for copywriting or copy coaching, you’ll learn a lot after just one “hot seat” session. Are you on the same page? Does she really know your stuff?
So next time you get an email inviting you to participate in a group session, stop before you hit the “Trash” button. Saying yes to this opportunity won’t just help you write better copy. You just might pick up a brand new client who’s listening on another line.