The very best way to promote someone else’s product?
In general, it does not involve “swiping” one of their pre-written emails, cutting and pasting in your affiliate referral link, and then blanket mailing to everyone on your newsletter.
However… Affiliates by and large are lazy. Or if they are not lazy, they are at least not looking to build a campaign from scratch in order to test your offer. They want a shortcut approach, and that’s why you write swipes for them.
If a test looks at all promising then the best affiliate partners will develop their own promotional emails and you (they) are off to the races.
For the Ageless Brain promotion I developed an affiliate resources area. One of the sections contains swipe emails.
The purpose of each of these swipes is to convince an email subscriber on someone else’s newsletter to visit one of the pages on which we offer a free guide in exchange for an email address.
So this traffic source is luke warm at least. They don’t know us. The goal of each swipe, therefore, is to get their attention and provide them with a reason to go check out our resource.
This is a challenging exercise given that in general we have absolutely no idea ahead of time what these subscribers are interested in. We assume the affiliate partner has the good sense to use the swipe most relevant to their subscribers, and that they are to some degree “health conscious” (since Ageless Brain is a brain health information product).
I am going to show you four swipes from the series I developed. Each of these promotes a different free resource (one audio, three ebooks).
In the case of two of the ebooks, I created those from scratch so I had the best understanding of the intended audience. Each guide was developed based on a unique concept I was fairly confident no one had seen before. That made writing the promotional emails fairly straight forward. The concepts had interested me enough to write entire ebooks around them so all I had to do was figure out how to convey to the reader the original germ of enthusiasm that had caused me to devote to them days of research and writing.
The other two resources required more in the way of head scratching as I had nothing to do with putting them together. Crafting suitable swipes for each was going to require some “creative thinking”.
Let’s take a look at each of these four swipes and I’ll tell you the thinking that went into creating them (no, not rocket science, but maybe there’s something mildly interesting to be found here).
SWIPE #1: “Back Pain” Theme
We’ll begin with the most conventional of the free resources. An ebook entitled “How To Build A Better Brain And Slow Cognitive Decline”.
This is exactly the kind of title you expect from someone hoping to attract interest in a brain health product that purports to help the user lower their risk of cognitive decline. That’s the problem in a nutshell with the title/theme of this book, it offers nothing which is at-a-glance newsworthy or unique to pique our interest.
That means we can’t use the theme of the book to entice anyone. To get the reader’s attention we are going to have to come up with something else. Something unexpected…
Like back pain.
I’m going to connect back pain to the threat of brain shrinkage. I can think of two reasons for taking this approach.
The first is that there is no obvious logical connection between back pain and brain shrinkage. As a result, the reader is naturally going to be curious to find out whether there really is a connection.
The second reason for focusing on back pain is that I can widen the target audience. The main demographic for this product is people in the age group of 40 years to 60 years. That’s about the age at which back problems begin to kick in as the years of personal neglect start taking their toll.
So the objective is to cast our net wide (back pain sufferers) and let them know their health issues may be worse than they imagined them to be, with the potential to get significantly worse in the years ahead if they don’t take action…
Whenever I can I’ll use personal narration (“I recently found out…”, “I’m not really a fan of this, but…”). I want the reader to imagine they are peering into the narrator’s brain.
It’s not always possible. Here we are writing a swipe to be sent out by an affiliate.
Now, we have no idea ahead of time who the affiliates will be, let alone anything about their personal lives. That makes it really tough to include much in the way of personal narration. But in instances like this one it is easy because I connect the narrator to the audience using a physical movement which almost anyone can perform.
Hey, it's NAME.
I don't know when the last time was I tried touching my toes, and I'm not going to tempt fate by trying it now...
But health-wise I've been fairly lucky.
I probably COULD reach for my toes and live through the experience.
I'm not suffering any lower back pain that would forbid me from giving it a shot.
But if you're one of the millions of people for whom this is NOT the case...
If back pain DOES affect your ability to enjoy life to the full, you should probably know it might also be doing terrible harm to your brain.
My friend Carolyn Hansen recently put out a new report titled "How To Build A Better Brain And Slow Cognitive Decline":
We were talking and I pointed out that
my health is fairly good and I wasn't
overly concerned about my brain.
She looked at me a little funny and asked if I was exercising regularly.
"Well, you know. Not regularly..."
Then she burst my bubble.
Even if you are perfectly healthy, she told me, your brain will shrink as much as 15 percent before your time is up.
And along with that go all the worrying consequences you might expect of having diminished brain capacity.
BUT - if you also happen to be dealing with severe and prolonged pain, this shrinkage will happen a whole lot FASTER.
Chronic back pain sufferers lose about 5 to 10 percent of their gray matter each year.
That's about the same as 10 to 20 years of normal aging.
So your aching back is literally causing your brain to wither away and the result will eventually be the same as if you were diagnosed with dementia:
- loss of memory
- inability to focus
- poor decision making
- personality and behavioral changes
- even seizures
In fact back ache is likely to significantly increase your odds of dementia (which at 65 years of age affects around 10 percent of the population, and the risk continues to double every 5 years from that point on).
Researchers at the Northwestern University Institute of Neuroscience found that back pain sufferers lost an average of 1.3 cubic centimeters of gray matter - the part of the brain that processes information and memory - for every year of chronic pain.
Back pain is just ONE of the reasons why your brain may be susceptible to excessive shrinkage.
Not exercising regularly (which is tough to do if your back hurts) is another.
Carolyn outlines the main causes for loss of gray matter, and what to do to block their effect, in her free report:
Click here to discover how to prevent brain shrinkage
If you've ever wondered just how susceptible your brain is to what else is going on in your body (or not going on), here's your chance to nip those destructive influences in the bud.
While there's still time.
Before your brain has had a chance to undergo irreversible downsizing.
SWIPE #2: “Balzac Coffee Break” Theme
The inspiration for the next swipe came when I learned about the memory-preserving properties of dates – the kind you eat, not the kind you go on to further your romantic interests.
It turns out the seeds of dates, which contain this magical substance (as does the flesh of the fruit), are used to make a caffeine-free coffee in parts of the Arabic world. I checked, studies have been performed and substances linked to memory preservation have been detected in the seeds of dates.
Now I have the basis for an interesting connection between drinking coffee and memory loss. The target market for our brain health product includes people in their 40s, but most of them are not thinking a great deal about memory loss, and won’t for another decade or so. But they are drinking coffee…
Now all we need is a suitable hook for reeling them into our message. This came when I chanced upon a reference to the lethal limit for coffee consumption. That and a reference to an historical figure who may have exceeded the limit.
Nobody gets to drink 50 cups of coffee a day and live to tell the story.
That's what the 19th century French writer Honoré de Balzac is rumored to have found out the hard way.
Mason Curry, who has studied the creative habits of some of the world's greatest thinkers, believes it was coffee that proved to be the double-edged sword that put Balzac away for good.
Coffee contains caffeine, which is known to set your brain's electrical circuits abuzz and fire your imagination.
But the same chemical substance that makes coffee a stimulant also causes it to be addictive for many people.
Balzac was hooked on the stuff. A veritable coffee maniac. And according to Curry he paid the price for his overexuberance.
"He ended up suffering from stomach cramps, facial twitches, headaches, and high blood pressure, and he died of heart failure age 51."
Towards the end poor old Balzac found himself holed up in his house hiding away from creditors and so jacked up on coffee that his caffeine-fueled penmanship gouged furrows into the top of his writing desk.
He might not have been paying his other bills as the debts piled up, but somehow he always found a way to ensure his coffee pot never ran dry.
"Coffee is a great power in my life; I have observed its effects on an epic scale. Coffee roasts your insides."
As it turns out, it may also roast your memory center.
That's what Carolyn Hansen discovered when she took a closer look at just how harmful some of our everyday habits can be to the long-term health of our brains.
And you don't need to be hauling back 50 cups each day to be causing the kind of damage that can lead to memory loss, mild cognitive impairment, and possibly a good deal worse than that.
Carolyn is an expert on matters related to brain health and dementia prevention.
Recently she has given a lot of thought to this issue of caffeine and the brain and figured out how to make those coffee breaks we love so much more brain-friendly (the way you might have assumed them to be).
To find out how to immunize your brain against the incremental memory-degrading effects of too many visits to the coffee machine click the link below to download her new FREE guide:
Carolyn will show you:
- How to reinvent your coffee break so as to avoid the brain cell-depleting dangers of a caffeinated, caramelized brain...
- How to harness the memory-preserving properties of a desert-blooming fruit to build a steel-trap memory...
- A surprising brain-healthy coffee "look-alike" PLUS 10 simple recipes for delicious, guilt-free, sugar-free ultra brain-friendly snacks
In the years since, she has been identifying the weak points in our lives where we are inadvertently encouraging our brain to shed the vital connections that keep our memories pinned in place.
And one of those weak points has turned out to be the coffee break where many of us are completely undermining our short and long-term memory.
Fortunately, as Carolyn explains in her guide, there's a much better way to enjoy your coffee break.
It's one that doesn't involve the quiet chipping away of your cherished memories each time you head for a refill :)
Click for your free copy of the "Brain Healthy Coffee Break"
SWIPE #3: “Bone Loss Dementia” Theme
When I pointed out to a prospective Ageless Brain affiliate that the buyers of the program tended to be middle-aged women he suggested it might be a good offer to present to his “menopause” list, made up largely of women interested in the topic of weight loss.
I thought about that for about two seconds and realized it would not be difficult to connect menopause with cognitive decline. So I went ahead and created a new lead magnet to broaden the options for affiliates looking to promote the Ageless Brain program.
As typically happens when you perform research on a topic (in this case the causes of cognitive impairment) you come across some facts that jump out at you as being really interesting but for which you have no immediate use. That was the case with “bone hormone” that forms the centerpiece of the new lead magnet: “Weak Bones, Weak Mind: Age-Related Cognitive Decline & The Menopause Penalty”.
This time the theme is novel. We are going to connect two seemingly separate ideas: bone loss and memory loss. And as the tag-line for the book implies, there may be a severe penalty associated with not knowing this information if you happen to be a woman going through menopause.
In this instance I am going to use narrator skepticism of a reported aspect of menopause to try to get the reader on my side before attempting to suggest they may understand less about the way their body works than they thought they did – and that this could ending up costing them.
Question: Given that I am not a woman, how do I approach going about writing on the topic of menopause as though I am completely familiar with the challenges of the opposite sex during their period of “midlife crisis”?
Answer: I happen to have a 700 page book on the topic of menopause on my desk and the author spends a lot of time empathizing with the plight of her audience. So I allowed a little of her angst to drive the copy. I’m such a cheat.
I discovered recently that menopause for some women is considered to be a time of personal empowerment.
I know. I'm like... Wow. Really? I'm a little surprised to hear that.
Apparently these lucky ladies find themselves approaching a "threshold for total transformation" (to quote an unnamed authority in the field of women's health) and regard the physical and mental changes forced upon them as an opportunity to completely remake themselves.
Well, it sounds absolutely marvelous.
Yet the reality for so many other women is that the irregular periods, hot flashes, insomnia, and bouts of volcanic anger mark a period of intense irritation and frustration.
One that can go on for years.
Fortunately the emotional turmoil comes to an end within 12 months of a woman's last period.
Life gradually resumes normalcy. The atrocities of biologically-curtailed womanhood come to a halt.
At least, that's what we thought...
Now, you may think it a terrible injustice that nature would reclaim your estrogen on reaching middle age and do its level best to turn you into a man.
Well, OK, now that I put it like that, it does seem kind of cruel.
But it turns out that if it is an injustice it's not one limited to just the years leading up to menopause.
That's because while your hormones may be sloshing back and forth during this period and causing huge disruptions in your daily life there are *other* things going on inside you at the same time.
Things which may be decidedly detrimental to your long term health...
This is stuff you couldn't possibly know about because it does not manifest as chills, boob sensitivity, or the involuntary act of peeing yourself when you laugh.
Instead it takes time for the "hidden" symptoms to develop.
So right when you're ready to break out the party hats and celebrate "life as a menopause survivor" it's actually dawning on you that the old you is not coming back.
Worse yet, new you is discovering that she is increasingly prone to episodes of memory loss, anxiety, and depression.
And it's all because one of those hidden transformations is finally taking effect - one that is able to exert its own powerful influence over your brain.
I'm talking about bone loss dementia.
Never heard of it?
Until recently no one else had either.
It certainly escaped the attention of brain scientists.
Probably because they don't spend their time thinking about bones.
The scientists who do study bones, they've known for some time that estrogen enhances bone growth and that estrogen levels drop off at menopause.
So they viewed the bone thinning process that women are subjected to after menopause as both normal and inevitable.
But new science is revealing that they never had the complete picture.
And what that new science is telling us is that fractures aren't the only serious risk posed by thinning bones...
Your very sanity may be at stake.
That's because scientists at Columbia University Medical Center have found bones don't just hold you upright. They send signals to your brain, important messages that affect memory and mood.
In other words, healthy bones produce hormones, something we previously had no idea they were able to do.
Carolyn Hansen, the creator of the Ageless Brain protocol has just released a free guide explaining exactly what all this means for your brain health.
She calls it "Weak Bones, Weak Mind: Age-Related Cognitive Decline & The Menopause Penalty".
It's an excellent summary of this strange development, one that surprised even Eric Kandel, the Nobel Prize winning neuroscientist who figured out how memories are encoded into the connections between our brain cells.
"Who thinks of the bone as being an endocrine organ?" said Kandel.
"You think of the adrenal gland, you think of the pituitary, you don't think of bone."
Yes, men (they have bones too!) are also susceptible to this form of "brain thinning". But it's really the ladies who find themselves in the cross hairs.
So if you are a woman and you are experiencing back pain (possible weakened bones), or you're glancing at your brittle nails or thinning hair, and you've been wondering if any of it is a sign of bone loss which you should be doing something about...
Well, I've just provided you with yet another reason to consider doing that.
It's the same point Carolyn drives home repeatedly in her guide.
That bone loss drives a "brain softening" process, and the act of rebuilding your bones (she provides you with her top bone-building strategy) could do more than just put a dampener on cognitive decline...
As the science is now showing, it may even reverse the damage by putting the right "bone hormones" back into circulation.
P.S. You can get a copy of Carolyn Hansen's free guide to averting "bone loss dementia" here:
Click here to download your copy of "Weak Bones, Weak Mind"
SWIPE #4: “Pricing Your Brain” Theme
In this fourth swipe the challenge is to promote an audio resource as our lead magnet. It is essentially a half-hour session of “guided meditation”. Tips on how to reframe your thinking so that you automatically assume lifestyle habits that lead to improved brain health.
The title of this resource: “Better Habits, Better Brain Health”. It is not the kind of title that grabs me, so I am going to go at the promotion sideways.
I will try to reel the reader in with curiosity about something they might never have considered before – the dollar value of their brain. Once I have convinced them it is in fact one of their most precious assets I will present them with an effortless way to “protect” it (just listen to this here MP3…)
This swipe benefits from the inclusion of a number of specific details and side story references that lend credibility to the final number I present for the value of a human brain.
If you are wondering why I present the dollar figure at the beginning of the piece, rather than try to work towards the big reveal, it is because it is an outlandish number. Knowing the number ahead of time begs the immediate question: how does one justify it? I judge that to be the more compelling question than the number itself.
Plus, if the reader knows the number ahead of time they can throttle back and absorb the information in the message rather than skim through it in a hurry to find the “dollar value”.
In a moment I'm going to tell you how I came up with my number.
(and maybe as much as twice this figure)
"My brain?" you may be thinking to yourself.
"My brain is worth that much?"
Not if you are thinking of selling it.
Anna Dhody curates the Mütter Museum in Philadelphia which houses 46 slides containing portions of Albert Einstein's brain and spinal cord.
Her blunt assessment of your chances of making a sale to someone like her:
"Unless your brain is very famous or very pathological, I probably won't be able to take it."
Even on the black market you would be lucky to get more than about $200 for the totality of your gray matter.
How can I be so sure?
Because in 2013 someone stole preserved human brains from the Indiana Medical History Museum and sold them on eBay.
No, that large monetary figure at the top of this message represents the COST to you and your family if your brain should happen to fail long before the rest of your body does.
As in, you do nothing special to preserve the health of your brain (which is par for the course for most people) and the inevitable happens.
Memory loss at first.
Then confusion. Followed by inability to complete simple tasks. Followed by social withdrawal. Followed by...
Well, you get the picture. All the hallmarks of a life diminished by dementia.
The math for my number - that worryingly high "cost of a brain" - is not difficult.
But to make it even simpler, let's assume there is NO cost associated with the loss of perhaps a decade during which you might otherwise have continued to earn an income had you not become mentally impaired.
It's a horrible assumption, but only you can figure out how much that loss of income is worth to you.
Much easier to calculate is the cost associated with paying someone to care for you from the time it becomes clear you can no longer care for yourself, until your death.
Typically someone diagnosed with severe dementia (generally Alzheimer's disease) is going to require about six years of full-time professional care.
The average number of hours of care per month required to tend to this failing brain... it's about 170.
Or 8840 hours over the course of a year.
Multiply this by a representative hourly rate of care - say, $15 - and the annual figure you come up with is $132,600
Over a six-year period this adds up to a whopping $795,600
Of course, you may not fare as badly.
Before casting off your mortal coil you might need full-time care for only half that amount of time...
In which case the cost of keeping you out of harm's way would be closer to $397,800.
So that's the reasoning behind my number.
It's also in line with the figure quoted by the Alzheimer's Association for the estimated lifetime cost of care for an individual with dementia.
They put the price tag at $341,840
Of this amount, they claim, about 70 percent will be directly borne by family members.
Keep in mind that this huge expense which might put your family into bankruptcy covers only babysitting services, not medical treatment.
But there is another option...
It is one which has as a consequence the elimination of this potentially crippling financial burden.
It involves doing what is needed to avoid ever being diagnosed with dementia in the first place.
The good news: it's not rocket science.
If it was Carolyn Hansen would never have been able to piece together her Ageless Brain protocol.
This is something you can learn more about when you download her free MP3 "Better Habits, Better Brain Health":
Carolyn was forced to watch helplessly as her mother's life was first derailed, then dramatically shortened by dementia.
Now she is using what she learned during that "awful time" to help others achieve the kind of brain resilience that could allow you to forgo the constant threat of cognitive decline in your later years.
And save your family up to $397,800
Or whatever the number is you think you'll pay once your brain packs up for good...
It's something to think about.
BONUS SWIPE #5: “Candy Jones” Theme
One more. Another swipe developed for the promotion of the MP3 resource.
This time I am going to use a real life story. But not one that has anything to do with dementia or any other disease-related cognitive impairment. This one is about… well, you’ll find out in a moment when you read the copy.
The idea here is to tie the theme of authenticated intelligence service “mind control” methods to the somewhat more questionable approach of guided meditation, which if we are being overly generous might also be described as mind control.
The appeal of this story is that it is based on real life and it is bizarre. With luck, some of the attraction to it rubs off on our much more humdrum MP3.
Note also the soap advertising image taken from a 1950’s-era magazine. It is used to “prove” that, despite the tawdry and questionable plot twists, the heroine of our tale was indeed a real person.
Something strange happened to Candy Jones
in the 1960s.
Candy was an international fashion model who had appeared in a white polka-dot bikini two decades earlier on posters that adorned the walls of World War II ships, tanks and foxholes.
I'm going to tell you about Candy Jones because of the "mind control" aspects of her story which intersect somewhat with the approach my friend Carolyn Hansen has taken.
Carolyn has created an audio you can download for FREE.
It is designed to reach the "other you".
The part of you you often wish would take control and get done the harder things in life you may not be able to find the willpower to pull off on your own.
Like exercising regularly to stimulate the brain-protecting hormones and growth factors that can be triggered in your body by no other means.
Use the following link to download Carolyn's effortless "brain retraining" audio session "Better Habits, Better Brain Health":
Carolyn's approach relies on an attempt
to first access your subconscious, then
trick it into going to work for you.
Just like the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States did with Candy Jones.
Purely by accident Candy ended up at the end of the war in the temporary care of a "Dr. Jensen" who many years later went to work for the CIA.
In 1960 she crossed paths with him again, this time very probably not by accident on his part.
Jensen promised to bring her deeper into the exotic world of covert intelligence.
But, he told her, she looked "tired", and suggested she do a hypnosis session with him to help with that.
We may never know whether he had already detected a second personality within her when she was sick and under his care in 1945.
But in 1960 Jensen was able to draw out "Arlene", the personality Candy had created in her youth to deal with emotional and physical abuse at the hands of her parents.
Now in Jensen's hands, Arlene became a tool to be developed for the CIA's top secret MK-ULTRA mind-control project - a spy in the form of a stunning six foot four inch pin-up girl.
Whereas Candy was warm and the life
of every party, Arlene was her mirror
image. Cold and contemptuous like her
mother had been.
For more than a decade she operated as a courier for the CIA, delivering messages while supposedly conducting "out of town business" as part of the regular activity for her modeling agency.
During that entire period, as Arlene went about her missions, Candy never once suspected she was living a double life.
Not until she married John Nebel, a Howard Stern-like radio talk-show host, in 1972.
When Nebel began to notice Arlene's personality leaking through he grew increasingly determined to get to the bottom of what was going on with his wife.
It didn't take long.
With a little probing Nebel discovered his wife's susceptibility to hypnosis and her incredible secret life as a kind sexualized Manchurian Candidate came tumbling out.
In 1976 her story was made famous in the book "The Control of Candy Jones".
Naturally it was billed as:
A BEAUTIFUL WOMAN'S INCREDIBLE BUT TRUE STORY OF HYPNOSIS, BRAINWASHING AND SEXUAL TORTURE...
Now, to be honest, no one knows for sure whether the story is true.
We only have Candy's (Arlene's) word for it.
On the other hand, when details of the CIA's MK-ULTRA mind control program were made public in the early seventies they confirmed the use of "amnesiac couriers" who took orders under the influence of LSD and sodium pentothal injections administered in the guise of vitamin shots to the program's willing participants...
When you think about it, this is a very EXTREME way to tap into your subconscious and get it to do the things your conscious mind would rather avoid.
Like regular exercise.
Whereas simply listening to a 30-minute audio session that gently nudges your subconscious in the right direct, like Carolyn's FREE MP3?
Click for your copy of "Better Habits, Better Brain Health"
I know which method I'd choose :)
Use the link above to grab it while you can.
Selling brain health to an audience that may not yet be experiencing the symptoms of a faltering brain is not easy.
As you can see from these swipes I felt compelled to find entertaining ways to bring the audience along, avoiding almost entirely any direct messaging about the consequences of neglecting to take care of one’s brain.
But once someone has opted in for one of the resources, then the topic is fair game.