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You need to have seen this page first - And headlines should feed on people's curiosity - to get this joke

 But Shouldn't You Use Positive Headlines?
Over 150 men found themselves talking to the Atlanta Humane Society.

If you don't pass this along, Something is the matter with you!

I received an email from someone the other day telling me I was wasting a lot of money by using the headline “everyone is dead wrong” in my Google Adwords campaign. Their view was that I should use a positive headline like “the true secret to advertising success” or whatever. They went on to say they’d been writing copy for thirty years in various capacities.

Well, let me address a few points here. What they had to say about negative copy is absolutely dead wrong (pardon the pun). Sure, there might be some books telling you all that stuff which were written 50 or 100 years ago. But here’s the bottom line. I do about 4 or 5 headline tests every single week. And I know for a fact that while sometimes the best headline is a positive one, in many cases it’s not.

Think about it: people are more motivated by avoiding pain than creating gain. And most of us would do far, far more to protect from losing our house than we would to create the money to buy another one. And that’s why negative headlines work so well.

I know that because the Google headline I use has been split-tested against ten other headlines. And it’s the best one I’ve got. And I see negative headlines in the copy of master copywriters all the time. People like Gary Bencivenga (Lies, Lies, Lies) Or Clayton Makepeace (Landmines In Your Portfolio) Or John Carlton (NAME and Family Seriously Injured in Vicious Attack By Gang Members)

There’s another important point here: while I appreciate this person is trying to help, just because you’ve been doing something for thirty years, it doesn’t mean you know it all. I’ve met plenty of business owners who think they do. “I’ve been in the carpet cleaning industry (or a mechanic, or owned a fleet of buses or whatever) for thirty years. What can a young buck like you teach me?”

That’s the sort of attitude I used to get when I first started. And the truth is, I can’t teach you anything about your industry. But I can teach you a heck of a lot about getting better results from your advertising and marketing.

The second truth is you might have been in your industry for thirty years, but how much have you grown in those thirty years?
Particularly from a marketing sense (which is the only thing that’s going to make you a dollar). How many marketing campaigns have you ran? How many ads have you tested? Have you tried fax streaming? Joint ventures?

Social media? Online lead generation campaigns? Pay per click marketing? Search engine optimisation? Article marketing? Getting your “lost customers” to come back and buy more? Referral marketing? Sending bulky frames or using the top 100 strategy to get big clients? … because in my experience most business owners have 1 year of experience repeated 30 times over.

Think about it. But more importantly, take action today and do something about it. Because if nothing changes, nothing changes.

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