HOW TO WRITE PROFITABLE
CLASSIFIED ADS

    Everybody wants to make more money. In fact, most people would like to hit upon
    something that makes them fabulously rich! One of the easiest roads to the
    fulfillment of the dreams of wealth is known within the professional circles of
    business as direct marketing, commonly referred to as mail order. However,
    hardly anyone gives much thought to the basic ingredient of selling by mail -- the
    writing of profitable classified ads. If your mail order business is to succeed, then
    you must acquire the expertise of writing classified ads that sell your product or
    services!

    What makes a classified ad good or bad? First of all, it must appeal to the
    reader, stating exactly what your product can do for him. Secondly, your classified
    must convey your message in the fewest possible number of words in order to
    keep advertising costs within your budget. Finally, a classified must produce the
    desired results, whether it is generating inquiries or promoting sales.

    Grabbing the reader's attention is your first objective. You must assume the
    reader is quickly scanning the page on which your ad appears in the company of
    numerous other classified ads, each set in the same typestyle and of
    approximately the same length. Therefore, there must be something about your
    classified that causes a reader to stop scanning down the column and read your
    entire ad. The first two or three words of your ad are of the utmost importance and
    are deserving of your careful consideration. Words or phrases that quickly involve
    the reader are the best attention- grabbers. Messages such as "FREE", "WIN",
    "MAKE BIG MONEY", "FANTASTIC", or "FAST PROFITS" will capture a
    reader's attention and draw his focus toward your ad.

    Whatever words you use as attention-grabbers to start your ads, you should bear
    in mind that they'll be competing with similar words in other ads on the same
    page. Therefore, in addition to your lead words, your ad must quickly go on to
    promise or state further benefits of your product to the reader. Your ad might read
    something like this:
 

    MAKE BIG MONEY! Easy & Simple.
    We show you how!

    In just a few words you've grabbed the attention of your prospect and interested
    him with something that he can do.

    The next step in successful classified copywriting is to increase the reader's
    desire to get in on your offer. In a great many instances, this rule is by-passed,
    and is the singlemost reason that an offer does not pull according to the
    expectations of the advertiser. Think about it. You've captured the reader's
    attention. You've told him it's easy and simple, and you're about to ask him to do
    something. Unless you take the time to make the offer unavoidably attractive, your
    ad is only going to have accomplished half the job for which it was designed. The
    reader will compare your ad with the others that have grabbed his attention and
    will ultimately decide upon one that has better given him a vision of the
    possibilities the product holds. It is at this point that you must insert a word or
    phrase that will convince the prospect of your offer's proven value. Use of that
    seemingly magic word "Guaranteed" or some equally powerful word or phrase
    will let the reader know you mean business. Thus, we've got an ad that now reads:
 

    MAKE BIG MONEY! Easy & Simple.
    We show you how! Guaranteed.

    The reader's complete attention now is focused on your ad, and in his mind, he is
    thinking that he can't lose by accepting your offer. You're ready to ask for his
    money. This is known as a "demand for action." This portion of the ad should use
    such words as" "Limited Offer", "Act Now!", "Write Today!", "Only", and Just".
    Putting it all together, your ad could read:
 

    MAKE BIG MONEY! Easy & Simple.
    We show you how! Guaranteed. Limited Offer. Send $2 to:

    The formula for any good classified ad is the use of words that will capture the
    reader's Attention, Interest, Desire, and Action - commonly referred to as AIDA.
    Without these four ingredients carefully integrated into your classified, chances
    are your ad will just "lie there" and not do anything but cost you money. What
    we've shown above is a basic classified ad. Although such an ad could be placed
    in any leading publication and would produce a good response, it's known as a
    "blind ad" and would pull inquires and responses from a whole spectrum of
    people reading the publication in which it appeared. Many would send the $2
    requested, but others would not. In other words, you would receive responses
    from as many people merely seeking to fill their boxes with free mail as from bona
    fide buyers.

    Let's give you an example of the kind of classified ad you might want to use to sell
    a report such as this one. Using all the rules of basic advertising copywriting
    listed above, and stating exactly what our product is, our ad will read:
 

    MONEY-MAKER'S SECRETS! How to Write Winning Classified Ads. Simple &
    easy to learn - learn how to double or triple your responses. Rush $3 to ABC
    Sales, 10 Main, Anytown, USA 10001.

    Remember: You've got to grab the reader's attention, interest him with something
    appealing, further stimulate him with some catch-phrase that makes him desire
    the product or services, and demand that he act immediately.

    There's no point in being tricky or clever with classified advertising. Just adhere to
    the basics and your profits will increase accordingly. One of the best ways of
    learning to write good classified ads is to study the classifieds that are already
    out there. Try to figure out exactly what they're attempting to sell. Practice
    rewriting the published ads according to the rules we've just given you. Whenever
    you sit down to write a classified, always write down everything you want to say.
    Go back over it, crossing out words and refining your phrases. Rewrite the ad
    several times for maximum effectiveness. After you have arrived at a final ad, try
    to write an entirely new ad for the same product. After completing the task again,
    choose the one that most appeals to you.

    The final ingredient of your ad is the name and address to which the reader is to
    respond - where he's to send his money or write for further information. Generally
    speaking, readers respond more often to ads that include a name than to those
    showing just initials or merely an address. However, because advertising costs
    are based upon the number of words or the amount of space your ad uses, the
    use of some names in classified ads could become quite expensive. If you were
    to ask your ad respondents to write or send their money to "The International
    Consumer Research and Publishers Association", to "American Book Mart
    Review", or even to "Economic Opportunity Digest", your advertising costs would
    be prohibitive. Therefore, shorten your name to simply "Researchers" or "ECD".
    The point is, consider your name in relation to the placement costs of your ad,
    and shorten excessively long names.

    The same rule that applies to names holds true when listing your post office box
    number. Shorten "Post Office Box 40" to "Box 40, or in the case of rural route,
    shorten it to RR. If the ad is sold by the line length, abbreviate extensions such as
    "Boulevard", "Drive" and "Avenue" to Blvd., Dr., and Ave. If the street name is
    completely unique, you want to leave the extension off entirely. A suite or
    apartment number can be listed as #303 rather than spelling out Suite #303".
    State or province names can always be abbreviated. Also, abbreviate directions
    in an address. Use "NE" in place of "Northeast" or "S" instead of "South".

    Always remember the rules of profitable classified ad writing, and follow them
    closely. Use the AIDA formula in writing a succinct, clear, and eye-catching ad.
    Hold your costs in line by using as few words as possible, but make sure that
    every word counts. Shorten names and addresses to keep costs low. Also
    remember that the best, most productive use of classified advertising is to
    generate inquiries, not sales. Now that you know the basics, the rest is up to you.
    Practice writing and rewriting your classified ads until each one becomes a
    successful tool for propelling you along the pathway to success.

I hope this information helps you in your business endeaver.You may copy and print this article. For more information read Reynold Jay's book    How To Think Small Business For Big Profits  and Born To Be Rich for business motivation. (CLICK for more information.)