I made you a video (I won’t lie… it gets weird)

The best thing I did for my business this year wasn’t landing a monster client, buying a course, or learning an underground copywriting hack.

It was discovering an easy, stress-free way to get paid.

Not creating a killer offer my customers would happily kill their granny for…

I mean a way of ACTUALLY getting paid – a checkout system.

I don’t know if you’ve ever looked into adding a shopping cart to your website, but it can be a bloody nightmare.

Having to link together payment processors, security, products, and plugins is no fun at the best of times, but when you’re a clueless imbecile like me, the end result is the same…

My daughter learns lots of new swear words.

This is gonna sound like a cheesy infomercial, but thank god for Thrivecart.

I don’t bandy around terms like “life-saver”, “thank god”, or “I’ll just have a salad please” often, but in terms of running a business, Thrivecart is worthy of at least two of those.

You might know I released my first course “Sent.” earlier this year. What you might not know is that I was terrified of the payments side of things screwing up.

“What if someone’s overcharged?”

“What if I put in the wrong details and everyone gets in for free?”

“What if WordPress updates and one of the plugins crashes?”

With ThriveCart I had no worries.

All I had to do was build the world’s most basic sales page and point people to it, safe in the knowledge ThriveCart would handle it all.

And if I needed to change anything – like when I decided to limit it to 40 spots – I didn’t have to dive into twenty different plugins and make sure they were all still talking to each other. 

One quick change in ThriveCart and it was done.

Bottom line – a BIg reason I was able to sell all 40 spots on my course – in just 10 emails – was down to the peace of mind and mental bandwidth ThriveCart gave me to focus on my launch.

The best thing? It only took me only a few minutes to get everything hooked up and create a sales page I could send people to.

I know a lot of folks SAY “a few minutes…”, so… 

Let me PROVE it to you…

I sat down and filmed myself creating a BRAND NEW product in ThriveCart, including an order bump AND designing the most hideous sales page you’ve ever seen.

Honestly? It took me longer to find, crop, and edit the photo of a scantily clad David Hasselhoff* than it did to create the product.

* You DID see the “it gets weird…” bit in the subject line, right?

See how easy it is to create a product in ThriveCart in this uncut (though probably should have been) screen capture video

If, after hearing my “I water down my lube” revelation (yes, really), you want to check out ThriveCart for yourself, I’d be well chuffed if you clicked here to find out more:


You’ll see by the rather blatant “Insert Gag Here” that this ain’t no bog-standard link. 

It’s a referral link. That means if you like what you see, and click that link to buy ThriveCart, they’ll send me some shekels to say thanks for passing you over.

(You don’t pay any extra – or less sadly – by clicking that link. It’s same as the “non-referral” price)

“That’s OK for you, but what’s in it for me? You know… aside from finally ending all my payment woes and saving me hours of stress…”, you say.

Here’s what’s in it for you…

If you click my special link and buy Thrivecart, I’ll give you a free critique of your sales page. 

You’ll get a fully annotated PDF with all my thoughts on how to make it better AND I’ll shoot you a video talking you through them, so you know exactly what to do.

I’ll help you get MORE sales…

… ThriveCart will help you process them.

More sales… less hassle.

Here’s the link again if you want to check out ThriveCart and claim your free critique:


John Holt

P.S. If you’ve been a member of my “email club” for a while, you’ll know this is the first time I’ve pointed you in the direction of someone else.

A few reasons for that.

1. You opted in and I don’t take that lightly. I’m NEVER going to talk about something unless I KNOW it can make your life better.

2. Being able to reliably test an offer or product before creating it is a game-changer. 

You don’t want to spend weeks creating a course, only to be greeted by crickets on launch day.

The best way to test an offer? Create a page that explains it AND gives people a button to press so they can send you money.

Don’t ask if they think it’s a good idea… or “would you be interested in this?”

Tell ‘em what your offer is and give ‘em a big green button to push, so you have PROOF they want it.

THAT’S the power of having something like ThriveCart – it gives you a chance to easily test offers and products, so you don’t waste time on a dud.

You don’t have to decide now though…

Join me (and David Hasselhoff)  as we show you exactly how it works.

Willie Thorne guessed my handicap

It was about 7:30 am and I was finishing my pre-game warm-up when the man on the putting green shouted:

“Judging by those balls, I reckon you’re a single-digit handicap… probably a 7 or 8…”

“Close. 9.”, I replied.

“Either way… I’m not playing you for money”.

That describes my best – and only – interaction with former professional snooker player, Willie Thorne who was gearing up for a pro-celebrity tournament.

If I told you that, because of our sparkling repartee, we decided to team up in the comp and ended up winning the damned thing…

… that would be a way better end to my little story than the “we both continued on with our separate lives” reality.

Here’s the lesson though – the better you are at golf, the easier it is to spot how good someone else is.

Case in point – I walk along my local course every day with my little, hairy, shitting machine and, despite not picking up a club in yonks (me, not the dog), I’m still able to tell how good the players on the practice green are.

Their stance, their grip, the tempo of their swing… 

When you know what you’re looking for, little things like those are more than enough to spot the good from the bad.

I don’t even need to see where the ball goes.

And, most of the time, one look is all it takes.

Willie Thorne didn’t need to play a round with me to tell how good a golfer I was. He could tell by how tight my balls were.*

* Trying to talk about golf without innuendo is like trying to walk past someone washing their car and not yelling, “you can do mine too if you like?”. It’s really, really hard.

Similarly, I don’t need to look at every single piece of marketing you’ve created to know where you’re marketing’s at.

Show me an email or a sales page you’ve written and I’ll know exactly what you can do to move it up a notch or two.

This is exactly what my “Coffee Critiques” are about.

You send me a piece of your marketing and I tell you how to make it better.

It really is that simple. It can be an email, sales page, landing page – any piece of marketing you want me to cast my eye over.

You’ll get a fully annotated PDF with all my thoughts and ideas, showing you how to make your copy more profitable AND…

I’ll also shoot you a screen capture video walking you through my ideas, so nothing is left to chance.

The only way to make this any easier would be if I wrote the copy for you!

A quick warning – because of how much time I put into these, I don’t have a lot of spaces available. Most of the time when you click the “Coffee Critique” link in my signature, you’ll be greeted by a “SOLD OUT” message.

But I’ve just opened up a few more slots…

So if you’re interested in an easy way to create better marketing…

Click here to grab your “Coffee Critique”.

John Holt

P.S. I’m super grateful it’s “WILLIE Thorne” and not “WILLY Thorne”, for three reasons:

1. “Willy Thorne” sounds like something a nudist rose pruner might need help with, and I can’t help but wince whenever I think about that, and…

2. I’d never have made it through the spam filters.

3. It gave me chance to include another link.

How to write a non-sleazy, zero-slimeball, and zero-hype “LAST CHANCE” email

“This is your very, very, very LAST and FINAL chance…”

“Buy now or you’ll be disappointed for the rest of your life!”

“If you don’t click this buy button in the next five minutes, I’ll smother your grandmother…”

A lot of business owners don’t like “LAST CHANCE” emails.

They feel sleazy, slimy, and a few other “ewwwww”-y words.

But what if I told you there was another way to write a “DOORS CLOSING” email that still brought in da salez, but…

… doesn’t make you want a hot shower after hitting “send”?

Good news – there is!

In today’s exciting episode of “Here’s what I like about this…”, I’m looking at a “LAST CHANCE” email that won’t make you feel sleazy, slimy, or result in the needless asphyxiation of any octogenarians.

Pensioners of the world – REJOICE! For Justin Blackman is here to save you…

Direct your cursor over this sentence and make a clicking action to discover how to write a “LAST CHANCE” email you’ll be delighted to send to your list.

John Holt

Facebook, WhatsApp, and Insta? Oh my…

As I write this, Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp are down.

Probably not for long, but…

If this was your “cart close day” and you had a whole bunch of social posts scheduled… maybe a Facebook live or two…

You’d be screwed.

If you have an email list though – one you keep nice and cozy with regular messages – the situation wouldn’t be as dire.

But it’s not just about salezzzzzzzzz tho.

I don’t want anyone else deciding when you can and can’t hear from me.

That’s something that should be up to me and you, and me and you ONLY.

I write the emails… you decide if you want to read ‘em.

(Unsubscribe link is at the bottom if you want out)

Choice and control…

Not got a list? Start building one.

Right now is the perfect time – fewer distractions.

So plot out that lead magnet, sketch out an opt-in page, or open a mail account.

Got one already? Shoot your “email-club” a quick message to say thanks for opting into your little corner of the world.

Because, at times like these, *FIRSTNAME*, I am grateful you’re here.

If you have any questions about building your own “email club”, hit reply.

And because I time-blocked the next four hours for “doom scrolling and watching cat videos”…… now’s the perfect time to ask.
John Holt

Laser eyes

Most of the time, the logical answer is the right one.

Trouble is, “most” isn’t “always”…

I’ve recently been struggling with an eye problem.

When it hurt I did the “logical” thing – stepped away from the keyboard, went somewhere dark and quiet, so I could shut my eyes and rest it up.

Sounds logical, right?

“Actually, that’s probably the worst thing you could do”, said my eye doctor.

(I say “eye doctor” because I can’t spell “op-fam-ol-ee-jist”)

“Best thing to do? Go somewhere bright. Flood your eye with light…”

I’m gonna take a punt and suggest to you that this advice – that…

“The logical, common sense and bloody obvious answer isn’t always the right one” applies to more than just eye health.

Marketing too mebbe?

“I’m not going to go into that market, it’s too crowded…”
“I need to offer more bonuses for my course than anyone else…”
“Once I give ‘em all the graphic and performance stats compared to the PlayStation… that’ll sell ‘em on this Xbox.”

Maybe, or maybe…… that crowded market is so starving for your offer, demand is higher than supply. Not only that but this crowded, starving, “take my money” market is already sold on your solution and looking for a button to click!

… your audience feels overwhelmed by a massive “piling on” of bonus after bonus after bonus. They’re suffocating under the weight of it all. They’re looking for something simpler they’ll actually USE.

… they don’t care about graphics. The only thing they care about is that their kid loves watching Spiderman games on YouTube so she wants to get one for him. And since Spiderman is ONLY on PlayStation…*

* That was WAY more specific than I’d hoped it would be, but I’ve just had lasers blasted into my eyes, so cut me a little slack.

Most of the time, the logical answer is the right one.

Just don’t always ASSUME it is.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, my eye hurts, so I’m going to book a trip to the Sun…

John Holt