Endless Emails

How’s my segue? Call 1-800-CLUNKY

How’s my segue? Call 1-800-CLUNKY

Funny how your view of things can change…

Case in point – on this morning’s dog walk, a helicopter flew over.

Back where I used to live, that could only mean one thing:

“The Police are searching for a hoodlum”.

Where I am now, it still only means one thing. But a different thing:

“The guy opposite me’s Waitrose delivery has arrived”

You think I’m joking? I’m not.

Moving from one of the most deprived areas of the UK to living across the road from a man worth £950 million pounds shifts your perspective.

It’s like wanting to boost your click-thru rate…

Actually, that’s a lie. 

It’s absolutely NOTHING like boosting your email click-thru rate. 

It’s not even close.

But that absolutely WAS my next thought after seeing the chopper whizz by, scaring my fearless beast.

And that ^^^ – officially the world’s clunkiest transition ever – actually has a point:

The more you think about how life events can be turned into emails…

… the more transitions randomly appear in your head.

Truth is, I could’ve easily used the “perspective/changing environment” angle to smoothly segue into:

“When it comes to your marketing, here’s a simple way you can shift the perspective of your audience, so they’re more engaged…yadda yadda yadda”

But no. That would be too easy. And valuable.

Instead, I chose to give you an insight into how my brain works. So now you, me, and my court-ordered psychiatrist (Hey Dr. Tomlinson!) now have something in common.

If you struggle writing emails, or you’re OK starting them… but find yourself veering wildly into different tangents, ending up with something so knotty, even M Night Shyamalan gave up on it halfway through…

… you might have a transition problem.

The good news – it’s a reps thing. The more reps you put in, the easier it gets.

The bad news – YOU have to do the reps.

Transitions are a “groove” you get into.

But to get into the groove you’ve got to prove your love to meeeeeeeee. oh oh oh oh…

… create it first. That takes reps.

John Holt

P.S. Oh, and If you’re feeling brave…

There’s an “EXTREME LEVEL” transition exercise included with this.

All you need is an internet connection and the willingness to fly by the seat of your pants. You’ll even get to watch over my shoulder as I go first…

Is this the easiest way to generate a new idea?

Here’s a nifty idea for you.

A Fisher-Price-level creative technique is simply taking two separate objects and combining them into one.

The Swiss Army knife is a great example of this on steroids – it’s a knife AND bottle opener… and a corkscrew… and a set of nail clippers… AND an almost filled 1982 Panini World Cup sticker album.

(One day you’ll be mine, Trevor Brooking… one day)

When copywriters come up with creative unique mechanisms, “putting two things together” is often the first thing we explore.

(Though obviously, we don’t call it “putting two things together” in front of clients. You can’t charge $25,000 for something that sounds like something a blind, uncoordinated chimpanzee could do)

If you’re thinking of selling your new bookbinding glue for instance – and I know you are – can you find a new hook by sticking something onto it?

Something to help it stand out from the other, well-known, bookbinding glues… you know, like… er… Bindermax, Sheetstick, and, er… Missive Mount.

(A word of warning: if you’re going to Google “Sheetstick”, be VERY careful with your typing fingers)

When you add something, you end up with something that’s not JUST a bookbinding glue, but a bookbinding glue that ALSO:

– Is kid-friendly (only 53% toxic, so the little brats will only suffer a mild case of gastroenteritis)…

– Contains 1,253% of your RDA of Riboflavin…

– Removes nail varnish and descales your Nespresso machine

If you’re selling a course in a market flooded with competitors, you COULD spend time coming up with an interesting angle to ADD to your course to make it stand out:

– A sparkly new bonus

– Edit the videos to make it the shortest/longest course ever

– Make it Vegan friendly by printing out all the handouts on Ryvita

But ADDING stuff is hard work.

(Besides, you could tell by the way I wrote “COULD” in caps there might be an easier way, right?)

What if you could come up with a unique mechanism for your offer – something to help it stand out from the market – by adding NOTHING?

Here’s an example…

Whenever I’ve been talking about my email writing course “Sent.”, I’ve kinda casually mentioned it’s an easy way to write personality-packed emails that sell… emails that actually sound like YOU wrote them.

There are actually TWO benefits lurking in that mess of a sentence:

1) A simple approach to writing emails that sell

2) How write funny emails that sound and FEEL like YOU

There are probably a ton of courses that teach either of those things. 

But how many do BOTH?

(No, seriously. How many? I’m too lazy to research.)

I’ll be honest, I’ve not been making the most of this double-pronged unique benefit.

My derriere has been lazily perched on a pretty powerful hook for a while… 

I just had to wake up and see it.

Now I don’t know you as well as I’d like to, but…

I’m willing to wager you might be sitting on a unique mechanism somewhere in your offers. Something that might make your customers’ eyeballs pop out of their skulls in delight as they reach for their wallets.

So look at your offers again. Come up with all the benefits and features you can for everything you have. 

Is there something powerful lurking there you’ve not been talking about…

… something that makes your “Appendix Assassin” DIY Appendectomy course different from all the other DIY Appendectomy courses out there?

Find it… and start talking about it more.



Clumsily talking about “Sent.”

Last year, I put it back into the mythical vault for a while.

(On a scale of 1-34, how cheesy would it have been to call it “Holt’s Vault?” 

487? Thought so. Glad I didn’t do it)

For reasons I won’t go into now, I’m thinking of putting it back on my imaginary shelf again, along with “Endless Emails”.

If I do, I’ll give you fair warning, but consider this your first “heads up”.

“Sent.” and Endless Emails probably won’t be available for much longer. And I’ve no idea if/when they’ll be available again.

Wanna check them out before they vanish?

Here’s an easy-to-click bunch of blue text that’ll help you discover more about “Sent.”


Here’s a similarly easy-to-click collection of characters if you want to find out more about “Endless Emails”.

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.


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.

Move over Sullenberger…

It took me 46 years, but I did it…

I finally beat travel sickness…

Ever since I was a kid any trip of longer than 38 seconds filled me with dread. 

“We’re just popping to see Dawn at number 32… bring the sick bags for John”.

On school trips, I’d be the kid sitting right up front and looking pale, with 14 wristbands on each arm, one wrist hanging out the window, a damp cloth on my forehead and a neck pillow. 

Passing cars must’ve thought my school was transporting fresh cadavers for organ harvesting to earn a bit of extra cash on the side.

For a while, I had a theory that sitting in the front was a solution to travel sickness, but it’s not.

Being able to see where you’re going helps… but moving from the back seat to the front isn’t enough. 

If you want to completely eliminate the chances of you creating your own brand of uphurlstery*, there’s one more move you have to make.

You have to move to the right (or left, if you’re American)

* I have to tell you… I’m VERY proud of that.

With travel sickness, the closer you get to being in control, the better.

Putting yourself in the driving seat is the only way to eliminate it.

Unfortunately, when you do this on a long-haul flight, entering the cockpit and demanding the pilot move from behind the wheel is classed as terrorism and everyone tends to get a bit shouty. 

Being in the driver’s seat gives your body a heads up so it can adjust for braking, turning around corners, and handbrake turns when being pursued by the cops on overblown terrorism charges. 

Don’t get me wrong. You can have a lot of fun in the back seat of the car…

… just not while you’re moving.

(You should probably take your wristbands off too) 

Travel sickness is like anything — the more in control you feel, the better. 

(Can you smell the “it’s a bit like email marketing…” transition yet?)

I’ve spoken to a bunch of business owners recently who are struggling to get their email game going. 

They know they should start emailing, but they don’t know HOW. 

For most, email is a “when inspiration strikes” thing. 

They don’t feel in control.

I think control in email marketing comes down to two things – having a:

1) Reliable system for coming up with things to talk about in your emails

2) Dependable approach to structuring an email, so you feel confident hitting “send”

Once you have a process for creating ideas and turning them into emails that sell, you feel more in control of your email marketing.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s still a ton of stuff to master, but with those two things, you can start hitting send and be on your merry way.

So… which one of those is the bigger problem for you?

If it’s the “what the hell do I talk about in my emails?” thing, check out Endless Emails. It’ll give you a simple system you can use to come up with all the email ideas you’ll ever need. 

(It’s the approach I used to write THIS email… HOW META IS THAT?)

And if it’s the  “How do I turn my ideas into emails that sell?” thing, you might want to check out Sent. It’s my day-by-day email writing course that shows you my entire approach to writing emails like this.

There’s a lot of stuff in Sent., but if you’re looking for a simple approach to writing emails that sell — and are unmistakably you — you might like it.


This email got a 90% open rate… and I’m pissed.

Looking at elaborate charts and graphs in email software makes me want to stab my eyeballs.

I do it though… presumably for the same reason people clean the toilets after Glastonbury… 

Because someone pays me to.

Graphs are lovely an’ all (and my mum would definitely go “ooooooh!” looking at all the snazzy colours), but I’m only really after one figure – SALEZZZZZ!

I want to be able to look at an email and see how many rupees it rained down on my bank account.

Only if things have gone a little bit kaka do I dive deeper… examining clicks, opens, and infrared, sonar-powered heatmaps*, pretending I know what I’m doing looking for the problem.

* I’m pretty sure I made that one up.

If I was being polite, I’d refer to my system as “laissez-faire”, but truthfully it’s more “fairly lazy”.

I’m not recommending this approach. It’s definitely a luxury that comes with the “having two clients paying me a monthly retainer so I don’t need to worry too much about how many courses I shift” kinda problem…

Despite my aversion to stats though, there is one I’ve been thinking about recently…

An email I sent which had a 91% open rate.

91% is pretty good, but I was pissed.

It should’ve been 100%. And that’s not even my ego screaming, “that email was so damn good I demand everyone open it”.

Everyone SHOULD have opened it. 

After all, they PAID me to send it.

It was the email you get when you sign up for my Endless Emails program course thing – the one with all the links.

Why would you pay for something and not even open the damn email?

Maybe their Lotto numbers came up after hitting my lovely green “Buy” button? 

If that’s the case, they’re probably too busy Googling remedies for the paper cuts they got from swimming in all that cash to worry about email ideas.

Or maybe… a can of soup fell on their head, causing amnesia, so they can’t remember buying the damn thing in the first place?

Perhaps it was a can of tomatoes?

The possibilities – and cans – are almost as infinite as the number of ideas Endless Emails helps you create.

(I give that plug a “shameless” rating of 9.)

Or maybe… something else happened. 

Something you may relate to…

Clicking the “Buy” button makes you feel like you’ve solved the problem.

This is why upsells work so well.

You grab a $7 offer that promises to take you from couch potato to trim and toned Dad. Then the upsell hits you…

“Now you’re trim and toned, here’s what you’ll be needing next – RIPPLING ABS! Pick up my AWESOME ABS AND OSTENTATIOUS OBLIQUES system now…”

And you think, “Yeah, now I’ve solved my tubby couch potato problem, I’d love a set of abs like that… I’m in!”

Now you’re hit with another offer…

“Now you’re trim and toned, and your abs are so rock-solid local blacksmiths are using them as an anvil to forge steel… It’s time to show ‘em off to the world. Here’s how you’ll rock your first bodybuilding competition…”

In the space of 3 clicks you’ve gone from couch potato to “Susan… oil me up!”

Your sedentary alert on your Fitbit buzzes you back to reality.

Clicking buy doesn’t solve the problem. It only solves the first part of the problem, the…

What’s the first action I can take to achieve this goal?

… part of the problem.

If people don’t engage with your course, by all means look to see if there’s anything you can do to make it easier or more actionable.

Maybe an email sequence would help boost engagement?

How about a friendly “How are you getting on?” nudge?

Don’t forget, this isn’t just your program. Online course completion rates are about 1.6%* for everyone.

* I made that up. I did sign up for a statistical analysis class on Udemy… but never made it to the “percentages” module.

You can’t solve your audience’s problems for them. All you can do is make it as easy as possible.

I’d come up with a great analogy for that, but I’ve got to head out. My horse needs a drink.