TCC Podcast #96: From DJ to Financial Copywriter with Ridge Abraham

For the 96th episode of The Copywriter Club Podcast, Kira and Rob talk with copywriter Ridge Abraham. Ridge recently left full time employment with The Agora and now works freelance for financial clients and is taking on clients in other fields as well. You’ll want to listen to this one if only to get all of the books Ridge recommends as we talked. In this wide ranging interview we talked about:
•  how Ridge went from Los Angeles DJ to financial copywriter
•  how his very first mailed promotion pulled $7 million
•  how he uses swipe copy without stealing ideas
•  his writing process
•  the projects he works on today—since he left Agora full time
•  how he structures his compensation for the projects he takes
•  what he does to connect to potential clients
•  how he keeps his skills sharp today
•  his thoughts about mentorship and why it is so important
•  what he’s learned from his famous dad—Jay Abraham
•  the “unbelievable” mistake he sees a lot of other copywriters make
•  the failures he’s experienced and how to know when to give up
•  several ideas to try if you want to write in the financial niche

We also asked Ridge about what he thinks will happen to copywriting in the future and he turned the question back on us, so we shared our thoughts as well. To hear this one, visit iTunes, Stitcher, or download it on your favorite podcast app. Or you can simply click the play button below, where you’ll find a full transcript.

The people and stuff we mentioned on the show:

Sponsor: AirStory

Agora Financial
Great Leads
Influence
Made to Stick
Money Map
Stansbury Research
The Oxford Club
Cremes and Lotions
Steal Like an Artist
A Technique for Producing Ideas
Joe Schriefer
Abbey Woodcock
Ian Stanley
Gary Bencivenga
Jay Abraham
The Dip
Chanti Zak
Kira’s website
Rob’s website
The Copywriter Club Facebook Group
Intro: Content (for now)
Outro: Gravity

Full Transcript:

The Copywriter Club Podcast is sponsored by Airstory, the writing platform for professional writers who want to get more done in half the time. Learn more at Airstory.co/club.

Kira:   What if you could hang out with seriously talented copywriters and other experts, ask them about their successes and failures, their work processes and their habits, then steal an idea or two to inspire your own work. That’s what Rob and I do every week at The Copywriter Club Podcast.

Rob:   You’re invited to join the club for episode 96 as we chat with copywriter Ridge Abraham about his path into financial copywriting, what he did to generate seven million dollars with the first campaign he ever wrote, why he’s so hard to find online, and the most important lessons he learned from his famous dad.

Kira:   Ridge, welcome.

Ridge:   Thank you guys. Thanks for having me.

Rob:   It’s really good to have you.

Kira:   We were joking before we started recording about how Ridge is the hardest person to find online. We had to scour the internet to find you.

Ridge:   That way you guys can’t ask me those trick questions.

Kira:   I know.

Ridge:  It’s even been easier to find Paris Lampropolous online, than it is to find me, which is saying something because he hides. I think he’s got a bigger body of work than me, I don’t know.

Kira:   So let’s kick this off with your story and how you ended up as a financial copywriter.

Ridge:   Okay. So it’s actually a pretty funny story. So, like I was telling you guys, I went to school for music. I was really into music production, songwriting. I was DJing. I was living in LA, and I really want to play shows. I wanted to travel and do stuff like that, and it is tough right out of college. If you want to be like an entrepreneur in the music business, it’s very difficult to make it and you’re often times broke. So I was working this internship at … It was like a subsidiary of Hans Zimmer Music for Film studio, and I hated it. I was the intern that every day I would just go and get people lunch. I was just like the gopher. Worst job ever, miserable. I was really like, okay, I need to figure something else out.

So I was listening to a lot of entrepreneurial podcast and one of them was John Lee Dumas, Entrepreneur on Fire, and I heard this episode with Kevin Rogers. And so I’m listening, I’m like, okay. He’s talking about copy sheets. He’s talking about copywriting. I’m like, okay, this sounds pretty cool. That’s interesting. So anyways, I hear that and then a couple days later, and as we were talking about my dad’s involved in direct response, someone from Agora, Ryan McGrath had come to meet with my dad at my house, I was living back at my parents’ house at this time, and so he comes to my house and my dad’s not there. And so I’m like, “How’s it going?” We’re talking, and he tells me he’s a copywriter, I’m like, “Oh, yeah. I just heard all this stuff about Kevin Rogers podcast.” We started dicing it out, and then he’s like, “Wow. You really know this stuff. So maybe come out to Baltimore and check it out.”

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I honestly had no clue what Agora was. I didn’t know anything about financial copywriting. When I first went out there I seriously thought I was writing articles on finance. I had clue was Agora was. I didn’t know anything about direct response. So I went and checked it out and I wanted so badly to get out of LA and just to do anything else with my life that wasn’t music at the time, that I took the job to go to Baltimore, and then I kind of landed myself in this DR, financial copywriting world. I was like, Oh, this is pretty sweet.

Rob:   It’s crazy that you didn’t know anything about copywriting, and yet you get hired as a copywriter. How’s that work?

Ridge:   Well, I think I read some copy before I went to Agora, and then I just think I had a lot of good questions. I’ve always been a pretty naturally curious person, and my mentor at Agora Ryan McGrath, I met with him and I met with Joe Schriefer when I went out there, and a couple of the other copywriters too. I think just being interested in it, like reading the promos and going through them, and just asking analytical questions about why certain things were certain ways in the structure of them.

When I first got out there I seriously got out there I seriously had no clue what I was doing. It was just like, “Oh, hey, writing. Okay. Cool.”

Rob:   Can you tell us about those first few days. What was the learning process? What did they put you through? How did you get your feet underneath you so you could write your first promotion?

Ridge:   So when I first got there, it’s crazy. Agora Financial has grown so much in the past two, three years. When I first got out there, I think it was right around when they were doing 50 million a year, and they’re still a relatively small company so there was only four or five … maybe with all the remote copywriters, maybe up to eight copywriters. Now they have 30, 40, something like that. But when I first got there, I was mentoring under Ryan McGrath and he would send me this whole regime of what I should be doing. So he would give me books. I remember I read Great Leads, Influence, Make it Stick, couple books like that. Then he would give me all the best financial promos to hand write. So I was handwriting one of the money net promos, some of the Stansberry promos, Oxford Club, I had a lot of those. So we’d do that.

And I would read a lot of the 4Ps, and some of the AWI materials, but it was just kind of like he would just give me stuff, like assignments due every week, and then it wasn’t until about three months in or so that I actually started working on my first promo. And it was writing some traffic drivers email lift notes, some space ads.

Kira:   So Ridge, I want to hear more about your time in music and the music industry, so were you a DJ, or were a singer or songwriter? What type of music did you play?

Ridge:   So I got really into hip hop when I was like 15, 16. I loved old school hip hop. So stuff like New York hip hop, West Coast hip hop, so I was always making a lot of hip hop beat. When I went to college I started DJing. I had vinyl turntables, and I would scratch and do all that. And then somewhere along the way kind of more like techno. House music got big, and so then I got more into that. So I started producing a lot of techno and what you’d call deep house nowadays. It’s kind of like the unz unz type music.

And so I did that for a few years, and yeah. I played a good amount of shows, still do around LA. There’s a couple big festivals that I’ve played, so it’s been really fun.

Rob:   Did you have a DJ name?

Ridge:   Yes. It’s … Me and my buddy we DJ under the name Creams and Lotions.

Rob:   Nice.

Kira:   So Ridge, what was your biggest takeaway from your time? You’re still DJing, but when you were heavily in that world, and it sounds like trying to build a career there, what was your biggest takeaway from your experience in the music industry that you’ve pulled into your career as a copywriter?

Ridge:   I think, honestly, the biggest thing you can take away just is swiping. Anything you do you can model it off something else and get it done so much quicker. I think any time you’re looking at a blank page you’re just trying to envision what’s in front of you. I think it’s though, but when you have some sort of structure that you can layout for something beforehand, it makes it so much easier and you can move so much faster. Any promo I’ve ever written, just having another promo to model it all off of, that makes it just happen way more fluidly.

Rob:   So when you talk about swiping like that, tell us how that works because there’s sort of two schools, people who say, “do not copy,” and I suppose that there’s a limit where copying bad, but swiping idea or patterns or structure, is good. How do you walk that line so that you’re not taking somebody else’s promotion and claiming that it’s your own, but you’re actually reusing strategy or tactics in a new way?

Ridge:   I think a really good book to read on this is Steal like an Artist. If you just go through there, basically the idea is that if you’re taking elements from different promotions, lots of different ones, you kind of make something of your own. But if you’re just ripping off one promo, then you’re just ripping something off. But a lot of times I find that even if I try to make something like someone else’s, I have my own flaws and I can’t do it and it becomes my own.

Rob:   So I read somewhere, it was maybe another promotion package, that your very first promo leaded seven million dollars, which is pretty amazing for somebody who had no idea what copywriting when he sat down to start writing.

So tell us about that first project and how that came together.

Ridge:   Okay. Couple things about that one. It technically was my first promo that mailed, I think, but I had one promo that was just caught in the pipeline before that, so it just didn’t … We had tested like a week after, but I finished that one before. And then I also I had written a promo the year before, and just because of some timely issues in the financial market, it never really made it out. So technically this wasn’t my first promo, it’s just my first one that actually saw an email test, but it was a penny stock promo on marijuana.

We called The 30 Day Marijuana Millionaire. The idea was that, and it’s true, marijuana stocks were just shooting up so fast that some people could buy them on one day, and in like 35 days you could make a million dollars. I modeled it off this old promo called, A 30 Day Retirement Plan. And so there was already this promo that it was for penny stocks and it was pretty much the same idea, but because after the Trump election marijuana stocks were legal in like six more states, I just tied that in to that idea, and just modeled the promo off that one. So if you ever read that, what is it, the technique for producing ideas, it’s like you take two ideas and you just put them together. It’s timely. It’s with the market, so it worked really well.

Kira:   So for that promo and probably just every promo at Agora, what does it actually look like behind the scenes when you’re working on it? Are multiple people working on it? Does it take you five months, or two weeks? What does it take to write a winning promo?

Ridge:   So that promos actually a funny story. Most of the promos at Agora, that promo I did it in a week. It wasn’t necessarily by choice. It was more like I sent a draft of the lead to the publisher and he was like, “Oh, hey. This is good. If we’re going to do this I want to test it next week,” and it was really cool because I was like, “All right. Well I haven’t really had anything that’s gone out yet.” If a publisher’s all in on your idea then it’s a good sign. You want to get it done, so I remember I was just pulling all-nighters and just writing eight hours a day trying to finish that thing.

So we cranked that out really fast, but usually for a promo you might get caught in the research for a month, a month and a half. The copy chief there, Joe Schriefer, he’s always big on the idea that if you have two months, or a month to cut a down tree you’re going to spend three weeks sharpening your ax.

Rob:   Well talking a little bit about your process, and I understand a lot of it is research, but from start to finish walk us through what does a promotion look like for you?

Ridge:   I think, honestly, just like what I just said, so much of it is having a good idea. If you don’t have a good idea you can write the best copy ever but you are going to fail. And I think that’s where a lot of promos go wrong. Just having that big promise that you can make in a promo that’s really going to make the market and someone who’s in that market keep reading whatever you’re reading. So it’s so important to just being able to say that in easy headline. So I think definitely working on the headline, and just having a good lead. Any time I was going to write a promo my mentor would just tell me, “All right. Put it in a 500 word lead and see if you can send it around to people and see if they want to read more.”

Kira:   So, Ridge, how long were you actually at Agora? Did you say two years?

Ridge:   Just about two years, a few months shy of that.

Kira:   So, what did your life look like during that time? I feel like it’s always kind of mysterious. People go to Agora, and you see pictures of them having fun, drinking beer and playing ping pong. What is the culture when you’re there, especially when you’ve moved and you probably don’t know a ton of people in Baltimore?

Ridge:   It was interesting moving from LA to Baltimore, because anyone you ever meet in Baltimore, and they ask where you’re from, and you tell them LA, they always say, “Why?”  For a while you kind of just, you’re like, oh you know it’s cool, and then finally it gets to you like, why am I here. No, all jokes aside, Agora’s really cool. They do a lot of really fun stuff in the Mt. Vernon area for all of the different divisions, so there’s always happy hours and different cool stuff they’re doing. It’s awesome!

You’ll see pictures of them probably at the 14 West Building. It’s super cool. They’ll get kegs and a bunch of wine and cool hor d’oeuvres, and they have these parties there all night. It’s pretty awesome. Then they’ll do big holiday parties and these parties in Spring too. There’s lot of fun stuff.

Rob:   Sounds like it’s all play. No work.

Ridge:   Sometimes it is, you know?

Rob:   So tell us about what you’re doing now. What kind of projects are you taking on now? Who’re you working with?

Ridge:   I’m working on a couple financial projects. I’m working on one with one of the divisions at Agora. It’s my good friend Patrick McKelvey. They do like the income franchise there, so we’re working on a lifetime income report, doing something with that. I have a good buddy, he has the top selling sports product on ClickBank. It’s a jump program, so it teaches kids who want to play basketball to jump higher, so I’ve been helping rewrite his copy for him. It’s been pretty fun, and coming from a financial background, it’s a lot different to write for a different niche, and it’s a lot more fun sometimes, I think, to change the scenery.

Kira:   You’re back in LA now right?

Ridge:   Yeah, back in LA right now.

Kira:   Okay, all right. So I want to hear more about, now that you’re kind of on your own and running your own business, and broke away from Agora, how are you structuring your projects and rates when you take on these big projects? How do you actually get paid?

Ridge:   I like to do an advance, and then royalties. It’s really tough if you, and I think we talked about this when I saw you last time, it’s tough when you’re coming from getting royalties to not get them, because for me, it’s even weird because if I were just going to charge someone a flat rate, I wouldn’t really know what to charge because I’d be so … I’d be like, well if it doesn’t do well, I want to change it, and I want it to do well, but I want us to kind of be in this together. It’s almost like a Revshare model. I only want you to pay me if it works. Some people don’t really get it, I think, and they’ll try to just pay a flat fee, and it’s like, ‘Well, I really prefer if we just split some of the revenue somewhere.’

Rob:   How does that work with a typical project? Do you take an upfront fee? I’m going to ask you for actual numbers, right, so you’re definitely not at the bottom of the crowd as far as copywriters go. What would you take up front and then what kind of percentage would you take on the back?

Ridge:   If you got maybe like a $10,000 to $20,000 advance on a project, let’s think, if it was like a backend product, it’s different on different projects. If you’re doing a backend, you might get a percentage of the revenue. If you’re doing a front end, you might get a fixed amount per lead or per name. So either way, you might get like five percent, something like that. So the idea would be that your advance is recoupable on the royalties, so you don’t get paid until you’ve done whatever the advance is. So say you get a $20,000 advance, you’re not going to get any additional royalties until after the promotion has paid you at least $20,000, so after that, then you’ll start getting checks.

Kira:   Okay, interesting. So how are you finding these clients who are open to that, because you’re right, not every client is open to that type of structure, so how are you finding the right clients for like okay, I see the value in this, yes, we’ll do this.

Ridge:   I think Abbey Woodcock kind of talks about it, but it’s just going to a lot of different events and meeting people, being at the bar. You’d be surprised how much business gets conducted there, but I think not really necessarily aggressively pitching people, just talking to them, engaging them, asking them about their business, giving them your input and then you’d be surprised how many people need copywriters. Even with the amount of copywriters that are out there, it’s crazy, and just being able to have met somebody in person and had an actual engaging conversation with them, they value that a lot.

My buddy that does things on ClickBank, we met at an Ian Stanley event and then when he needed someone to rewrite his stuff, he called me, so I think that’s a big opportunity for a lot of people just to go out and meet people.
Rob:   Is that the main way that you keep your skills sharp is that you’re going to conferences, you’re talking to people, or do you do other things as well just to keep on top of it and always be learning?

Ridge:   Yes, I mean I love going to conferences. I feel like you can go to too many conferences though, at the same time…

Rob:   For sure.

Ridge:   … you don’t want to be the guy that’s just going mastermind to mastermind. I think the best thing to do is just read promos. I think Gary Bencivenga said read an ad a day. Just do that, just mark it up, try not to just read it, but try to see what the copywriter’s doing. See what each part’s doing, see what each subhead’s trying to … like the objection he’s trying to overcome. I think that’s probably one of the best ways to stay sharp in my opinion, just always be looking at different copy.

Kira:   I wonder, you clearly did well early on in your career at Agora, and you’re doing well now. There are a lot of copywriters who have a hard time getting started and getting that traction, and maybe they can’t move to Baltimore and work for Agora, so what would you recommend to them to really kind of get a win early on in their career. What would you do if you were just starting out?

Ridge:   I think I’m biased because you know, I did go to Agora, but I would find a mentor because you learn so much so fast if you have somebody telling you all the ways that they had screwed up and all the ways they went at it wrong, and here’s the right way. They know through testing it. I was at Agora for a year, and I feel like I was able to learn what some people would learn in five, 10 years freelancing, just because it was all expedited information coming straight to me.

I can’t say how valuable that is. Even when I was doing music, this is a good analogy, I didn’t have anyone showing me anything, so I didn’t know what was right and wrong to read. I didn’t know, okay, that’s worth doing that’s not worth doing, and I think having a mentor makes that so much clearer.

Rob:   I love that advice. Throughout my career, different people at different times to mentor, I think it’s absolutely critical. Anything else in addition to mentorship to help other people sharpen skills and get moving?

Ridge:   I mean this is really applicable to financial copy and probably health, but I’d say try not to get too caught up in explaining things. If you read a lot of good copy, I think you’ll notice that people explain stuff, but they only explain stuff enough to just graze over it, and then just get it back into whatever they’re talking about. You’ll see a lot of copy where people will go kind of off on tangents or go down a rabbit hole of just like explaining some science or something in the financial market, and I think being quick in your copy. Just not getting like 10 lines explaining something, just get in, get out, and head towards whatever you’re trying to persuade.

Kira:   I’m wondering if you’ve worked closely with your Dad ever or if you’ve learned a big lesson from him that you’ve taken into your career.

Rob:   We should probably jump in and just mentioned if anybody recognized, Ridge’s last name is Abraham, his father is Jay Abraham, who’s relatively well known in the direct response space for being an incredibly intelligent, I don’t want to use the word guru, but he’s kind of the guru on the top of the mountain, he’s at the top, right?

Ridge:   He’s up there, definitely. I’m trying to think. You learn a lot, so it’s hard to just say, narrow it down to one.

Kira:   We can narrow it down to three if that makes it easier.

Rob:   Or 21. Or however many.

Ridge:   One of the things definitely work ethic. Growing up, I saw my Dad working every day my entire life, and he’s just always on the phone, always traveling, always doing stuff. He got into marketing when he was like 18, you know, he had two kids when he was 19, and the way he says it, he was 19, had the needs of a 40 year old man, and the world didn’t care, so that’s probably what propelled him to be the guy he is, and it’s all through his work ethic, so I think that is one huge one.

Another one is, it’s kind of like the Dale Carnegie thing, if you want to be an interesting person, be interested. I’ve seen him really just get people into some of the most engaging conversations ever where like things that I know that my Dad’s not actually that interested in, but the way he will … For instance, there’s this guy who has this boat, and the guy just loves his boat, he’s a family friend, and my Dad just kept asking these questions about this boat and he just was having the most emotional responses, really just opening up, and it’s true, people will really gravitate towards you if you just act interested in whatever it is that they are doing or they like. So that’s a big one.

Third one, I had one I think before the show, but I’d say just he always taught me when you’re writing a sales letter, make sure you’re writing it to one person, and always keep that person in mind. So I think along with that goes really know your market and know who you are writing to, because I feel like that is such a huge thing to writing copy, just knowing exactly who you’re writing the sales letter to.

Rob:   Yeah, we don’t necessarily want to make this a show about your Dad who’s going to be in a future episode at some point, but the one thing that I really am impressed by Jay is he’s a master diagnoser. He asks enough questions to actually understand a problem before he starts throwing out prescriptions and ideas. He really spends a lot of time trying to understand what the problem is in the business or with the customer or whatever. I think it’s just really impressive. The other thing is, he seems to really care about every single person that he talks to and I think that dovetails to the three things that you’re talking about there, as far as being interested as well as really understanding who you’re writing to.

Ridge:   He really wants to help people, and it’s awesome.

Kira:   So Ridge, you mentioned that you recommend going to conferences, maybe not too many conferences, and that’s a great way, networking is such a valuable way to get work, so I’m sure you’re tapped in to the copywriter community from Agora, from conferences and organizations you’re a part of. What mistakes do you feel like you see copywriters making today that are just glaring mistakes, and it could be copywriting related or business related, that really stand out to you?

Ridge:   One thing I think is, I’ve seen this in the financial niche, but what I would call is kind of hollow promises. Something where you look at it and it’s just sort of unbelievable and maybe they’ve seen it before. I saw this headline recently where it was kind of just like “Make money from doing nothing.” Like that sort of stuff, and there was no indication to me of like how it really worked or how I was going to actually benefit from it. I think things like that, a lot of it is just in the idea phase, and I think conversely you see a lot of people that sometimes they’re trying to get too complicated. I think you see some copywriters really trying to just throw together some big crazy idea where it’s like the Russian formula that’s going to send this stock shooting, stuff like that. I think there’s just two sides of it. You can get way too crazy with it or you can just get, there’s not enough intrigue and your headline. I’ve seen that a lot. Besides that, I’d say just being simple, the readability, is so huge in financial copy, just making the lead something that’s really easy to get through.

Rob:   And we mentioned your huge success that, the seven million dollar mailer, that first one that got into the mail and into production. What about some of your failures, you know, what are some of the mistakes or missteps that you’ve made in copywriting and what did you learn from it?

Ridge:   I think there’s sort of two big mistakes or failures. One of them was the first promo I ever wrote. I was writing about this company, it was a single stock promotion with the idea something’s going to happen and this stock is just going to shoot off to the moon. I wrote this whole promo about how this cancer drug was up for FDA review and once the FDA said the trials had worked, it was going to skyrocket. So I wrote this promo, it took forever, it was my first promo. I had no idea what I was doing. It took me like five months to write it.

After you write something at Agora goes into legal, and then after legal it goes into production. After I got it through legal, I sent it to production and it just kind of sat there. I kind of like asked around and trying to get it through and nothing ever really happened with it. Eventually I was looking at the news and the trigger date for my promo actually happens. I look at this stock and it shoots up like two or three times. Meanwhile, I was just like, damn. That was sort of a failure in my eyes, because I always wanted to know how that one would do.

Another big failure was I think last year I kind of left Agora, not left Agora, but I left Baltimore. I picked up this one project. This is after I had two promos that were kind of controls that were doing generally well. I was putting a lot of pressure on myself to just find something and work on it. I picked up this one project that was this financial trading system. I kind of locked myself into it before I really knew what it was about and how it worked. I just kind of wanted to work on something. Every time I opened this project up on my computer and try to write, I just dreaded it. I hated it. I sat there hours a day trying to write stuff and every day I just can it.  I’d just delete it. Then ultimately I just had to just scrap the project.

I just felt bad about it, because I felt like I couldn’t do it. You have Seth Godin talks about the dip, or if there’s someone else there’s a different way for it, we’ll talk about that, but it’s like I was caught in a dip. I was like, I think this is a dead end. That was a tough one. You’ve got to choose your battles.

Kira:   I always wonder with those dips on coffee projects, if you just kind of have to push through when you’re feeling that, and it’s just a disconnect on the project, or if when it’s time to just leave the project, how you know which one it is?

Ridge:   Yeah, well it’s tough too, because you don’t want to be like, hey, I can’t finish this.  A lot of it’s a pride thing, but sometimes it’s more like, I don’t want to waste my time. When I was at Agora, I was like, I just don’t want to like get like write a promotion that’s going to bomb you just waste all these resources on legal, production and design. It’s tough.

Kira:   We have covered others that might be interested in financial copy and maybe they think they’re trying to decide if it’s a path they should pursue. What would you say to someone who’s considering it or just thinking about it as an option? What do they really need to know about financial copy in order to make that decision easier?

Ridge:   Just read financial copy. Get on the Agora list, the money map or Oxford club, Agora Financial.  Try to track down some of their promos, read through them. Just see if you like it. If you would want to write in that style. Some financial copy can be pretty aggressive, so see if that’s something that you want to do. Try it out and maybe think about how you would write a sales letter on why maybe a certain stock is going up. Think about the persuasive elements of what would make one of the promos you read work, and see how you can maybe model that yourself after some other situation in the financial markets. I think that’d be pretty good way to get started.

Rob:   So we’ve talked about, you know, how you started your career, some of your successes and failures. What’s next for you? Where are you going in your career, what’s the trajectory look like?

Ridge:   I’m picking up a lot more projects nowadays. I’ve taken a little break over the past few months just to travel and do some other stuff. But I really wanted to start a business, because I think you were talking about it and it Titans. When you write copy, sometimes I feel like you can have a killer promotion, you can have two killer promotions, but after them you’re still kind of back at ground zero sometimes. You might have a skill set, but sometimes it just feels like, to me, I know we’re on a copywriter podcast, but it just feels like you’re not building anything. I really want to build some sort of business. I love writing copy. I want to write copy for my own stuff and whether that’s partnering with someone that’s an expert at something or you know, getting some e-commerce stuff. I’m really eyeing that kind of situation because it just seems fun to me to be part of like the actual, like brand or business.

Kira:   Yeah. So do you have any specific ideas? Like are you going to create a shoe company or what is this going to look like?

Ridge:   There’s a couple markets I was looking into. For a while, past few months I was really looking into the dog supplement market, dog health. I love dogs and I think there is some sort of statistic where humans take better care of dogs than they do themselves.

Rob:   Or their kids sometimes.

Ridge:   I forget where I read this, but people are more likely to donate money to a sick dog than a sick person.

Kira:   That’s awful.

Ridge:   It’s crazy, it’s ridiculous.

Rob:   But it’s a market right?

Kira:   Right, it’s a great market. So a few final questions. One, because you’re a mysterious person on the web, are you going to start marketing yourself and like start a YouTube channel or where will we be able to see you, hear you, find you or?

Ridge:   I’ve been thinking about it. I was never so much. It’s just a lot of the Agora people, a lot of them aren’t so much into like creating their own personal brand. They’re just kind of writing copy. I’ve been thinking about getting more into being out there. I’ve just never really been so much into marketing my marketing skills. I’ve always wanted to do other things, but I kind of want to get more into it, so stay tuned maybe.

Kira:   Exciting, and then my final question is just what does the future of copywriting look like to you?

Ridge:   The future of copywriting? I don’t know. I mean I always wonder, like with millennials and younger demographics, are long form sales letters is going to keep working? I always wonder that. Dan Kennedy will tell you yes. It’s tough to say. We don’t really know. I think you’ve just kind of got to test stuff and see what works and adapt. What do you guys think?

Rob:   It’s actually great. That’s a great question.

Ridge:   Kira asked this a lot, so what is the future of copywriting, Kira?

Kira:   Oh my gosh, no, no, our show. You can’t ask me questions.

Ridge:   I think you might be right though. I mean there are different ways that copy is being used that we’ve never had before. With home assistants that do all kinds of searches instead of using your laptops, or computers, or phones. Obviously copy needs to be done for that. So much is being automated with bots and the way that we communicate. So to me it feels bright, because there’s need for words everywhere, but I think a lot of us are going to have to relearn how those words are being used in different mediums.

Kira:   Right, and a good example of that is interactive copy, which I know Chanti Zak is focused on. Maybe more copywriters kind of moving into that space bots, and Facebook ads. For me it’s kind of more a personality driven copy, because I feel like as we get more into the bot space that we really need to feel that connection to the person behind all of this. I’d say just how the value behind bringing out that personality behind brands, products, businesses will be really important. Thanks for reversing that on us.

Ridge:   I like to put you guys on the hot seat.

Kira:   You’ll have to interview us at some point.

Ridge:   When I started building my brand, when I go public on the internet.

Rob:   We’ll be your first guest. That’ll be good. So Ridge, we know you don’t have a website, you’re hard to find online, but if somebody wants to connect with you.

Kira:   They can’t.

Ridge:   Send me a letter. It’s my name at gmail.com, send me an email. I’m usually pretty quick to answer.

Rob:   You are on Facebook. We see you in the group every once in a while.

Ridge:   Yes, add me on Facebook or send me a message. I’m usually good on there too.

Kira:   Awesome. Well thank you Ridge for spending time with us. It’s been fun getting to know you even better.

Ridge:   Yeah awesome, thank you guys.

 

 

 

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