Inspire Change Through Words

33 Copywriting & Messaging Principles For The Rising Personal Development Star


Personal Development Copywriting & Messaging Principle #1: Know The Arc Of Transformation

You have the gift of transformation. It’s a gift you want to give to people who are ready. At the very core of what you do is help a human being go from point A to point B. 

That sounds simple, and it is. So long as you’re clear about point A

Your arc of transformation must start where change is ready to happen. When you deliver a highly potent and refined message to the person who is ready for change, it’s 10X more powerful than attempting to deliver even the most inspiring words to someone who’s not ready to budge.

As you advance as a marketer, you can speak more broadly to people who aren’t sure. 

The best personal development copywriter who ever lived was no doubt Eugene Schwarz. He helped grow several multimillion-dollar businesses, including the company Instant Improvement, which boasted a dense catalog of personal development books.

He also wrote Breakthrough Advertising: the holy grail of copywriting books. His most important teaching is about market awareness. The arc of transformation I’m referring to is a simplified version of Eugene Schwarz’s teaching.

The key difference: 

Your market’s awareness focuses on how aware they are of their problems, solutions, and your solution specifically.

Your market’s arc of transformation contains specific events that move them through to each stage of awareness.

Those with massive brands like Tony Robbins speak in broad strokes because of how recognizable their names are. Tony started his journey working for Jim Rohn, who taught leadership and communication skills to large corporations. Tony’s first seminar was a leadership skills series, because he knew how to communicate the arc of transformation to those who sought it. Mark Manson was a dating and relationship coach. Marie Forleo was too. Jen Sincero was a coach to female business owners. The points from A to B were clear when they started; now they have gigantic brands and can address the masses.

Master your arc of transformation first, Superstar. We’ll get there, don’t you worry.

Example #1: Napoleon Hill & Stephen Covey

This one is easy. Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich speaks to people who want to be rich; Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People speaks to people who want to be more productive and effective at what they do. 

The arc is simple. 

Napoleon Hill was not trying to convince people who believed money was evil to read his book; Stephen Covey was not trying to convince the chronic couch potato to be more productive.

Example #2: Brendon Burchard

Brendon’s first big hit was The Millionaire Messenger, where he taught people how to make a fortune by packaging advice. It’s fairly obvious: people who want to make lots of money sharing what they know. Real broad. 

Except three years before that book was published, he was selling his ideas about becoming an expert to speakers and coaches specifically.

Wowza, and look at his landing page, complete with hard-hitting, objection-busting copy like “bad economies are GOOD for experts.”

Imagine reading that in 2008. Well, it worked. Brendon Burchard is now one of the leading high-performance coaches in the world.

But he narrowed in on one arc of transformation first.



Copywriting & Messaging Principle #2: Remove Your Ego

Many misunderstand their ego. Convince yourself you know it all and you've failed completely. Just because you have solutions doesn't mean you know more than others. A bum on the street knows things you do not.

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