Do you have a podcast?

I’m not even going to try and conceal this from you…

I’m EXCESSIVELY excited about my new microphone.

It’s vivid red, glows an even vivid-er red when it’s “LIVE”, and has a rubber top you can tap to mute/unmute yourself and turn the light off/on.

(I *may* have spent 47 minutes in total darkness tapping the button, pretending I was being pursued by half a Police car…)

My next sentence is short but it’s pulling double duty – explaining both why I bought a new mic AND why you should give any number of hoots.

I want to be a guest on your podcast.

I’ve set myself a stupidly high goal, part of which involves putting more of me out in the world* and guesting on podcasts doesn’t seem like a totally foolish way of doing that.

* Not physically, you understand. I mean in a “boost my profile”-y kinda way.

Basically, I’m looking to whire* myself out as much as possible so we can chat about anything your audience might find interesting.

* Not a typo, but a portmanteau I invented. (I’ll let you guess)

In a few seconds, I’m going to audaciously ask you to hit reply so I can be an awesome guest on your podcast, so…

Why don’t I help you discern if I’m airtime-worthy by giving you a list of some of my noteworthy escapades…

(“Yay – a short list”)

… along with some topics I can reckon I can talk about for longer than three minutes without sounding like a total doofus…

(“Thank god – a SHORTER list”)

We could talk about:

– How I went from full-time magician to landing three heavyweight copywriting clients despite having NO experience, NO connections and a Covid inspired “WHEN DOES THE BARBERS OPEN AGAIN?” haircut

– The time I won a stand-up comedy competition on only my third ever gig!

– Surviving as a freelancer without resorting to drugs, alcohol, or colossal carbohydrates consumption

– How to use humour in your emails (especially when you think you’re not funny)

– Ever wondered what the easiest way for an 8-year-old to set their leg on fire is? Wonder no more because I HAVE THE ANSWER!!! (and the four-inch thigh burn to prove it)

– Croupier, social worker, timeshare salesman, private detective, supermarket cashier, radio presenter, and accountant… I’ve done all of those jobs – EXCEPT ONE! But which one… (and how a chequered CV can be your best advantage when you know how!)

– Pivoting to a brand new career as a freelancer and starting from scratch!

PLUS – simple copywriting and comedy wins for business owners who want to stand out from their competition… without getting bogged down in “wordy” stuff.

(I should probably have put that one higher up the list. Ah well, that’s the price you pay for drafting emails on stone tablets…)

TL;DR: If you’re looking for a podcast guest, I’m available.

If you think I’d be a good fit for your rabble, hit reply and let’s make it happen.

John

95% of the time, the answer is WAGEANOWGAS

I’ve changed one thing about this email. There might not be a lotto jackpot in it for figuring it out but there might be an answer to a common email marketing question. 

Hint: NO HINTS FOR YOU!!!!

– – –

Working for clients in the US is a pretty sweet gig – it guarantees me a solid chunk of uninterrupted writing time in the morning where I at least have the potential for creating something useful.

The biggest downside?

The “what time is it where you are?” questions I ask – and get asked – on every Zoom call.

That’s a small price to bear. Cab drivers are famous for enduring “what time do you finish tonight?” queries from customers. And, as a magician, I was constantly deflecting this classic:

“No, seriously… what do you do for a day job?”.

Five minutes of back and forth time telling is a small price to pay for ping-free writing time.

The only time the time difference becomes a challenge is when I’m helping at online events.

To save you Googling – an event that finishes in the US at 9 pm means I still have to be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at 1:59 am.

As someone who goes to bed around 9:30, that ain’t easy…

In my vast experience of working these events (I’ve done more than two of them now), I’ve found the only way I can come even close to resembling a normal human being after midnight is by shifting my entire body clock to the right about 5 hours.

That sounds simple, but as anyone who’s ever done shift work will tell you… it can be a bloody nightmare.

Most days I get up at 4:40, so setting an alarm for 10:00 makes my fingers twitch.

I have to be pretty brutal about it.

I warn my family that living with me for these three days is going to be an ordeal filled with torture and misery and to not expect anything from me (something I wish I’d added to my wedding vows).

For three days my to-do list was:

1) Set alarm for 7 hours after going to bed (AND STAY IN BED UNTIL THEN)

2) Revise my “no more coffee after 2 pm” and “don’t eat after 7 pm” rules by about five hours.

3) Drink at least 8 glasses of water.

That’s it.

Once in a while, you have to accept that you’re not going to be your usual productive, optimising beastly self…

… you just have to survive.

Sometimes shifting everything to the right for five hours can have a big impact. Other times, not so much…

Like when someone asks me:

“What’s the best time to send an email?”

My usual answer is precise and to the point:

“I have no idea”.

I’m sure there ARE stats available where emailers in white coats have tested EVERY possible niche…  in EVERY possible timezone… in EVERY kind of season.

I’m sure SOMEONE knows the absolute, optimum, peak, best, perfect time you can hit send to get three more opens than if you sent it five seconds later…

… but I don’t care.

Think about the people whose emails you ALWAYS read…

Do you read them because they always land in your inbox at 18:47… or because they’re bloody awesome?

That’s a good question to store in your back pocket whenever you wonder about “niggly” stuff like this – use your favourite emails as a benchmark.

Christians have “WWJD?”*

You should have “WWMFED?”**

* I’ve always thought “Jesus” and “Judas” beginning with a “J” allows Christians a fair bit of leeway in how they should act, depending on what kind of day they’re having.

** “What Would My Favourite Emailer Do?”

Ultimately, 95% of “What is the best…”-type questions about email can be eliminated by remembering this not-quite-an-acronym :

“WAGEANOWGAS”

“Write a great email and no one will give a shit”

John

P.S. Did you spot I sent this email 5 hours later than I usually do?

You did? Awesome.

Now… 

Do you care?

Why would you EVER choose this option?

Brace yourself… I’m gonna talk about my roomba (remember – little “r” cos it’s the Aldi version) again.

I’m sure you’ll be delighted to hear I’ve now honed my pre-roomba routine to the point I can ensure his safety by only moving two objects.

CARES GIF

Not only am I using the little scamp every morning, but I can set him off and head upstairs to do some work, safe in the knowledge he won’t Alex Honnold his way up our drapes.

(He’s actually whirring his way downstairs as I type)

(The roomba, not Alex Honnold. I don’t know where he is.)

Our relationship is blooming so magnificently, I even looked in the manual to see what all the buttons do.

I’ve never felt so alive!

Turns out there’s an “intense” setting I didn’t know about.

As a werd man, I know “intense” can mean different things.

If I select “intense”, will Rover do a deep clean, or… will he transform into Christopher Walken and start maniacally laughing or ranting in a staccato rhythm?

I looked around my lounge and decided to chance it. 

I had my phone at the ready, just in case.

(I thought an electronic Max Zorin pacing my lounge might go viral on TikTok and help me recoup some of the money I lost in my hot tub streaming venture)

Turns out it was the “deep clean” thing.

(I know, I was disappointed too)

When Rover goes “Full Walken”, he still scuttles around the room but he turns from Obi-Wan to Mace Windu (his light goes from blue to purple) and he works a little bit harder.

As soon as I saw this, I had a question. Can you work out what it was?

Here’s a hint: as soon as I discovered this super setting, I thought of the Jerry Seinfeld joke about pilots who, after taking off late, say “we’re going to make up some time in the air”, to which Seinfeld responds:

“If you can go faster, why don’t you just go that fast all the time?”

I wondered the same thing about our little Rover:

“If the ‘intense’ setting cleans my carpet better, why would I EVER choose the other option?”

That’d be like winning dinner at a Heston Blumenthal restaurant and ordering a boiled egg.

If you have a choice between two options – and one always gets better results for the same effort – why would you ever choose the other?

If you’ve got a way of writing emails that bring in sales DON’T buy my email writing course “Sent.”.

If you’ve landed on a system for coming up with an infinite amount of things to talk about in your content DON’T you dare even look at Endless Emails.

You don’t need to do more things… you need to do more of the things that work best.

Vibrator in the rectum

Occasionally the email God (I call her Tabitha Curbishley) smiles upon you.

And then sometimes, she even smiles on you… gives you a neck massage… puts your shopping away… AND cooks you a full English breakfast…

As soon as I saw “Episode 1: vibrator in the rectum”, I looked at my router, bowed my head, and said a quiet “thank you”.

Me and the missus were on the hunt for a new show to binge. 

While flicking through Discovery + (that’s how bad things have got), we landed on “Stuck” – a medical documentary featuring stories of people with foreign objects stuck in some of your favourite orifices.

Clearly, they were front-loading* the first episode with the more shocking jammed accidents. And “Vibrator in the rectum” certainly delivered.

* Why does the term “front-loading” make me cross my legs?)

Between the looks of:

and 

There was one thing that stuck stood out…

The bold, unapologetic patient.

I’ve no idea how people go on these shows proudly parading their unmentionables to millions of viewers.

But I really admire it.

In the case of “VITR” (I can’t keep typing “rectum”… I just can’t), I admired how open the lady w… actually let me rephrase that…

I admired her honesty regarding her actions that culminated in her requiring medical assistance:

“I thought I’d draw myself a bath, put it up there and have myself a good time”.

I think she even did a little “yay” dance to accentuate the “good time” part. 

It takes a lot of balls to admit that on international television.

Will she get judged by other people? Definitely.

Might folks give her a second look if they spot her in Aldi buying a large Toblerone?

Probably.

But here’s the thing…

You don’t have to do something crazy for people to judge you.

We do it all the damn time.

People will call you “pushy” just because you included a call to action for your offer…

Folks will label you “rude” because you don’t reply to their email within 12 seconds…

Potential life partners will brand you “a bit of a weirdo” just because you show them the 19,243 photos you have of them sleeping… on your first date.

The biggest mistake you can make is to hold back through fear of being judged.*

* I should probably add an “obviously there are exceptions to this” caveat here.

When it comes to your marketing, bold and unapologetic is the way to go.

You’ve got to channel your inner “lady with a Fisher-Price Rock-A-Stack inside her rectum”.

For example:

– Looking for some inspiration to help you write your next email? Check out the FREE year’s worth of email prompts waiting for you inside your GOOGLE DRIVE OF AWESOMENESS!!!!

– Want a simple approach to writing better medical insertion-based emails? Click here to check out “Sent.”

– REALLY curious about the vibrator thing and want to witness the horror for yourself? Here you go matey.

By all means, be clear in qualifying who your “thing” is a good fit for…

(Honestly, I’m really NOT trying to come up with innuendos…)

Butt once you’ve done that, go all in.

(OK… I WAS trying then)

Am I a piece of shit or a jar of honey?

“You seem to attract a lot of copywriters.”

I was chatting with the photographer who took my new headshots. We’d arranged to meet (IN PERSON!) so I could help her with her emails.

She’d seen the comments on the FB post of my photo.

“They swarm around you like flies.”.

“You mean because I’m a piece of shit?”, I replied.

“No… I was meaning more like a jar of honey…”.

I resheathed my cutlass in my scabbard and sat down again.

Let’s see if we can rescue a marketing lesson for you from this therapy-worthy example of me always presuming the worst, shall we?

OK…

Always be crystal clear in your marketing.

“This garden strimmer will change your life!”

OK… but…

Will it change my life in a “your garden will go from Amazon rainforest to Augusta National in 20 minutes” kinda way, or a “one slip and you’ll be fishing your toes out of next doors koi pond” kinda way?

Both are life-changing, but one is decidedly more desirable than t’other.

This is why – when I remember – I‘m quick to mention that copywriters and business owners who already have a system for effortless cranking out sales emails should NOT buy my email writing course “Sent.”.

They should absolutely NOT click the link to the sales page at the bottom of this email.

If what you’re doing is working, stick with it. “Sent.” will only be a distraction. But…

If you’re on the lookout for an easy-to-follow approach to writing emails that sell so you can discover how I write emails that get replies like these:

This is gold! Also smooth! God, when can I have such a superpower?”

“Excellent – snorted tea out my nose!”

“Sent.” might be worthy of a quick looksie. Maaaaaaybe even a shufti.

I wouldn’t take my word for it though because I’m one of those shady marketing people you read about in Portable Restroom Operator Monthly.

 So here’s a testimonial I haven’t got round to slapping on the sales page yet:

“Hi John,

Have read through this [day 8] this morning – and then just sent out what I feel is one of my best emails yet to my core email list

Loving the Sent course so far. I’ve not actually had time to thoroughly put the tasks into place yet, and yet still feel I’m benefitting a lot from the email content alone.

Thanks and all the best,

Jen”

If you’re interested in finding out more about “Sent.”, you’ll find the following collection of clickable blue letters a bit handy:

https://insertgaghere.com/sent/

John