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4 unexpected marketing lessons we learnt from reading Gary Halbert’s Boron Letters

In the 1980s [yes, 1,000 years ago] Gary Halbert wrote The Boron Letters. Now, in 2022, we’re still learning sh**loads from the deceased direct-marketing obsessed copywriter. 

Whether your instinct is to jump for eager joy, or to roll your eyes at yet another old, dead white guy telling you the ‘right way’ to do things – the lessons Gary Halbert imparted on the world are undeniably valuable. They’ll help you reach more customers, sell to those customers effectively and start making a real impact [oh, and WAY more $$$].

Who is Gary Halbert?

Gary Halbert is one of the most well-known direct response copywriters of all time. He was born in the 1930s and died in 2007 – during which time he achieved crazy success. 

Gary Halbert used an old-school method to test out his copywriting strategies. He mailed out variations of thousands of letters to customers and waited to see which ones were responded to best. It’s way harder than checking your eDM stats for click-through rates, but it worked. 

In the 1980s, Gary was sent to Boron Federal Prison for tax fraud. While there, he wrote a series of letters to his son, Bond. These letters shared his philosophies on life, health, business, copywriting and tips about direct-mail marketing.

Bond then became an amazing copywriter himself, with over 50% open rates on large [and sometimes old] email lists. Woah. 

So what have we learnt from Gary Halbert’s Boron Letters?

1. Mindset is EVERYTHING

Whether you’re writing an email, crafting your new website or coming up with sales pitches – mindset makes ALL the difference. If you want to grow your business and get more sales, take note of this quote from Gary Halbert:

“Everyone wants to climb the mountain, but the big difference between those at the top and those still on the bottom is simply a matter of showing up tomorrow to give it just one more shot.”

While your competitors might be waiting around for good luck to strike their business like a bolt of lightning, showing up tomorrow [and the next day] with the right mindset will truly set you apart. 

2. Know your audience

From social media marketing to SEO strategy, knowing your customers inside and out will help you solve their problems. That means looking at the data and figuring out what their habits are, what pain points they have and how you can help them.

3. Grab their attention

Is getting your customer’s attention easy? No. 

Is it worth it? Hell yeah it is! 

But how?

According to Gary, there are two ways to capture and sustain the attention of your audience:

  • Distinguish your value proposition from the very start and tell the audience why your offer is relevant to them specifically.
  • Do something different or novel to pique their interest. How can you separate your marketing from the pack?

4. Never forget A.I.D.A

When it comes to effective copywriting [and digital marketing in general], the A.I.D.A. formula is a tried and tested technique. It stands for:

Attention: Create an attention-grabbing headline.

Interest: Write a hook that expands on the promise that your headline makes.

Desire: Outline the service or product benefits that will entice your reader to convert.

Action: Give your customer an irresistible offer that convinces them to buy from you. 

Never heard of A.I.D.A before? Try implementing it in your next eDM or landing page copy and you’re guaranteed to see a conversion rate increase.

Start multiplying those zeros!

Whether you’re hoping to make hundreds, thousands or millions in 2022, using the tried and tested lessons of Gary Halbert will undoubtedly kickstart your mission. 

Want to grow your business using tips from the Boron Letters but not sure how? Get in touch with our expert team today and start seeing your business get more zeros.

Oh, and remember:

“Constantly be on the lookout for groups of people (markets) who have demonstrated that they are starving (or at least hungry!) for some particular product or service.” – Gary Halbert


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