Episode #159 – Big Jason Henderson On Shortcut Copywriting Secrets Rides Again! The Legacy Of Scott Haines (Plus Email Dogma Holding You Back)

by John McIntyre

BIG Jason Henderson (He’s a 7 footer) was a professional
basketball player down-under.

Sensing the limits of that career he hit the internet.

From his early days at what would become About.com and learning about email “conversation” …

To being “Halbertized” into the fold by Bond Halbert…

Since ’96 he’s been writing and testing profit-pulling email copy.

His involvement with MECLABS has been invaluable and…

He’s out to punch some holes into email dogma (especially from the IM niche).

Recently, his close friend (and renown copywriter) Scott “Mongo” Haines passed away.

Scott had created a famous copy course that many people had urged him to update for the last five years.

Gary Halbert himself had said…

“If you could only afford to purchase and study one product, it would NOT be anything I, personally, had produced… I would recommend, above everything else, a course called ‘Shortcut Copywriting Secrets’ which was created by my friend, Scott ‘Mongo’ Haines.”

So Big Jason has picked up the torch and will be securing Scott’s legacy by keeping his work alive.

You’re going to love this week’s episode.

In this episode, you’ll discover:

  • The sordid truth about daily emails. Past the rhetoric and propoganda, Jason gives everyone the low-down on best practices.
  • How testing a different approach boosted EVERYTHING in the funnel! (Starting with a 27% boost from the Facebook ads)
  • What Scott’s longest running client had to say about 3 of Scott’s amazing sales letters.
  • How Scott handled the knock-down, drag-out, jump-off-a-cliff battles with several “clients who suck”. (The outcomes may surprise you).
  • Where Jason got the hook-up when getting his career in copy started. This secret rears it’s ugly head again and again – but bears repeating!

Email Marketing Podcast Episode 159


Intro and outro backing music: Forever More by CREO

David Allan: Hey everybody. Welcome to another edition of the podcast. I’m David Allan and we’ve got another great guest. I’ve really been looking forward to speaking with today. He is a lord of e-mail.
He has over 20 years of experience e-mail marketing and he sent over 1 billion e-mails much of which has been tested. Jason Henderson Welcome to the show.

Big Jason: Hey David thanks for having me.

David Allan: So tell us about that a little bit. You’ve been at this since 1996 in regards to e-mail. How did you get into marketing maybe give us that superhero origin story lead us down the garden path of why you’re in marketing.

Big Jason: Sure. So I was playing professional basketball Down Under in Australia and I just had this six sense that it was going to last forever so I don’t really you know been online and looking at stuff never really did anything and there was a local college there which is high school in Australia and they had a you know computer lab and they said hey you know anytime there’s a free seat feel free. So I started jumping on and the first big thing I did was I was the about dot.com guy to exercise back then they’re known as the mining company.

OK. So basically brought in all kinds of experts to teach us about list building you know stuff like that. And as far as e-mail all I said was like hey guys it’s simple you just want people back and it’s you just have a one on one conversation. Oh I can do that. I started from there and I started working with local businesses. I stopped after a while if I only knew how big you know marketing for local businesses would become I would stuck with it.

Right. That’s that’s interesting. So you were and back then. How would you approach these people one on one or how would you go about it.

Oh yeah just people that I would meet you know normally is they had their cousin or their freind bastard nephew doing their stuff and I was like oh really.

Well you know it just gave you I totally you know X Y Z.

BI crap are there you know if you put a nephews out of work since the 1990s.

OK I you go from there into getting into. I was reading a bit of your bio there on the campaign page or something I think and it was talking about how you attended all their marketing Sherpa McLeod’s conferences and stuff like that sort of the route of education you chose in terms of the marketing.

Definitely. The first one was in 2006 in Chicago and I’ve been to every single one I just got done last week on my 12th straight sum and I’ve spoken there and I’ve taken all their certifications and email messaging optimization value proposition 12 Atlantic bridge optimization and especially the online testing part. So yeah before 2006 you know I was studying Dan Kennedy and that had been introduced to Armand Morin and Alex then dozin and they kept on referencing marketing Sherpa.

So that’s how I found out about them and I found they had the email summit. So I started going.

Cool cool. That’s interesting and 12 years straight that’s a long that’s a long stretch.

Yeah I get something out of it every single year.

Now what do you when you went from taking me like you know putting nephews out of business and you got into doing more e-mail or you know for internet marketers and so forth was that through those conferences those are more and more and connections and so forth.

Yes definitely going to events was crucial in developing relationships so yeah meeting those people and you know them get to know me helped a lot.

Yeah. That seemed to be a common thing that we hear on the show when you interview copywriters and various designations is that live events have been a big boon for them getting started and for continuing to find new clients.

You know as they say a lot of work is done in the bar.

So that brings us to today. Most of your business now is still doing email for people.

Yes. You know product launch is anything you do with email strategy email copywriting. Yeah.

Affiliate promotions all the good stuff and you have a couple several courses of your own that sells well.

Correct yeah. Of course not improving the response to any email you send about in-basket Series product launches cost them.

Now what we’d like to talk about sort of first today aside from your sort of career trajectory is you’re involved in something right now that is very special to you from a friend of yours. You know basically based on a friend of yours someone actually had the pleasure of talking with on the phone one time and that is had to do with Scott Haines what another would you talk to Scott about I wanted to buy his shortcut copywriting secrets course.

So that was the way back then years ago this would have been but few for sure.

And that’s going to be the only way to sort it out. I’d heard about it. I see people talk about it on the Warrior Forum or wherever but it seems to be the only direct way to sort of get a hold of it was to get to Scott.

So you got something very special because Scott has since passed away and you’ve sort of been very instrumental in helping him and his family and you are sort of there throughout that thing and and you’ve kind of taken the reins of Scott’s legacy. In terms of his marketing and copywriting legacy. Let’s talk about some of the things you have going on in regards to that.

Yeah. Bond Howard introduced me to Scott. Scott Scott had heard about me from other halber protege protegees throughout the years from Bon and said Markowitz who had done some work for him. So we met up in Vegas. And so for the last four years we’ve been hanging out. And then when I moved to Austin he moved as well shortly thereafter. And yeah he tragically passed away recently and his family asked me to. You know they gave me all this stuff and said hey can you please you know take the lead on this and you know make his course available so I’ve been doing is I put up a waiting

list and I’ve been doing ad break downs and some of his best ads in his original course he has a bonus called his hottest sales letters volume one. And people have been asking him to update us course or at least update is hottest sales letters for you know over five years. And he just never got around to it and so going through all his stuff I just found a winner after winner after win and is just not finding sales letters and assuming that winners like finding actual notes and details about the millions of dollars these sales lawyers have generated and so killable doubt another Howard protege.

He came up that it’s you add breakdowns of this how to sales letters to add to the second version of this course. And so that’s all I’ve been doing Guys like John Carlton David Deutsche Mark Jostein David Garfinkel Brian Kurtz. Gilbert Dowds Jimmy mark with Bon halber Kim Rogers $9 Mike Morgan and a lot others. So they’re going to get you know how to sales letters line to you know update of this course based on his notes that he left that I found. Right. And yes so it’s going to be killer.

Wow that’s awesome. Now having known Scott free for years like you did. What is it about Scott Haines that people should know if they’re not familiar with Scott and give a rundown of why he was such a close friend of yours why are you taking the lead on this.

Sure. Yeah he was known as the copywriter. After Gary Howard’s own heart he he wrote most like Gary. Gary called him his best student. Gary actually told people that you know before he even said anything that I’ve written about Kuyper anything new to study scores and which It’s interesting. We hit it off immediately and we have a love of copywriting UFC Ultimate Fighting Championship segment. Right. And and we always did that and then also we had we really connected on Gary halberds

famous line you know our clients.

So we are always sharing war stories about.

That’s good. If you can share that with our audience because we’ve talked about that quite a bit and what sort of a low you know brief backstory that’s sort of how I got involved in that. All this is true seeing Gary Hurlburt reading Gary Albert’s letter and so forth and that’s one of the first things that I sort of made aware of is that phrase all clients suck. And so maybe a few of those stories if you can.

I’ll try to share a few without revealing I know certain details but on game one arrested hit today. Yeah. No the kid has had quite a few.

Where there is he had everything in writing.

Everything was agreed upon you know X front x on the back and certain royalties and he just had a lot of clients who would just come up with the craziest excuses of why they didn’t need to pay him. One guy one guy or one client I should say said you know you know your copy was great and everything but most of these sales were were closed foam and he’s just like how did you get him on the phone. Is I would yeah your copy but you know myself. And so just take crap crap like that. But

the crazy thing and this is when I went to Tulsa to be with Scott for the few weeks he was fighting and meeting his family in his hometown friends. It really resonated with me is just how much people loved him as a person. It was funny that there was three or more like knock down drag out just piss off you know.

You know jump off a cliff encounters you had with clients he.

Was still great friends with them. He oh yeah.

Was he always even when he told people off he always what extra mile to to make it seem. Or you know actually you make it seem it is actually the truth is just like look it’s just not working out you know business wise by well I really want to leave this personally as friends. You know I I like you as a friend I love hanging out with you. I love hanging out with you again. But as business wise it’s just not working together and I’d rather and things now versus you know never speaking again. And the crazy thing is

the three worst blow ups he’s had with clients he still remained great friends and they still say great things about him today.

Wow. That’s that’s testament to the person Scott was obviously that he was able to separate those things and maintain those relationships outside of the business aspect which is hard to do sometimes.

One of the people this is really interesting.

So I reached out. I was able to take control of his list and his customer list and other things so I was reaching out to them saying hey you know I just want to let you know that Scott passed away and I’m trying to continue his legacy and all that. And one person actually got a hold of me was his longest running client. And he just raved and raved about Sky’s a person about how you know how fond memories of hanging out with him and everything and he told me the craziest thing because like I said I’d found some really good sales letters and some amazing stats of what they had done. He had told me that

he started working with Scott in about 2000 2001.

Upon the recommendation of Gary because Gary didn’t have time and he said that he had taken at least three possibly more of Scott sales letters and put them on line.

And this was after doing millions initially with Scott and he put them online. And there’s he can’t find he get paid copywriters enough today like literally today they’re online he can’t find anyone to beat Scott’s controls.

Wow. At least three of them. So I was like I can believe what I know.

That’s awesome. That is a great if I remember correctly Scott wrote at least a version or perhaps the final version.

Of the Trump University. Yes sales letter right which is controversial.

Yeah actually now that’s very interesting.

It sounds like I have heard of a lot of people sort of talk you know in different videos different products you know about how good of a guy he was and it seems to bear out not only just in copyright in school and also in his personal life. So what should people know about you know if they’re going to get involved with shortcut copywriting secrets and you know get on the list and we’ll give all those links and stuff from the show notes. We’ll get that information. What are things that they should know about the way Scott wrote copy and what you’ve learned perhaps Jason yourself from being friends with Scott just conversational one to one copy.

You know Bon’s says that Scott wrote more like his dad than anybody else. And it’s true. It’s been amazing doing these ad breakdowns and everybody agrees that yeah it’s very personal one to one very simple language. And that’s the big problem I see today with copying especially e-mail copies everybody’s is looking for the you know the latest persuasion trigger and all the fancy you know persuasion tactic to increase copy. And I just found out you know simple

you know fourth grade reading level is the way to go.

Yes it’s like you’re talking to everybody.

Yep exactly. That’s what Scott was all about so I learned a lot about that. I still studied his letters every day.

Wow. Awesome. So that’s going to be a whole new package you’re putting together that people should be able to get their hands on. Yep. So maybe tell us a bit more about your about you and about your e-mailing history. I know you have this long history and all these tested emails and this a B tests but you’ve run for people you know that are out there that either are getting into email marketing. We have a lot of freelancers or they’re in our Chua’s I established in their freelance career and they want to improve their email. What are some of the you know top ways that people seem to go wrong. Obviously the conversational thing is as massive. What are some of the other ways.

Sure. So the marketing super mech Labs was huge for me because what I found was that in the eye and circle there was a lot of email dogma. And I was fortunate enough that I had gotten started with really no one teaching me about email other than you know about dot com formerly the mining company saying you know hey you know it’s like having a one on one conversation. Right. So I didn’t have to go through you know starting with the Course saying you know don’t use images or don’t do this and don’t do that you can’t do this and go to the

marketing Sherpa email summit and studying wigwag labs really emphasized that that you know by a lot of the I am circle has a lot of dogma that’s just not true. So I would caution people about listening to what they hear you know online about you know can’t do this can’t do that and stick the one on one conversation. It’s been huge for me. And part of that is having a personality which of course can include images. Right. And as far as the testing goes this is a I’ve probably spoken to over 40 people

who don’t believe that you can scientifically or accurately splits us to email which is total B.S. by the way.

But I think they’re missing the point because if you really study splitters you realize that when you split test the main goal is not to get aleft or see what works better. It’s to learn about your customer. And that’s been huge because you know there’s the whole curve versus stick you know what’s going to work better.

Telling them you know how amazing their life’s going to be blah blah blah or telling them you know what your product or service is going to save them from and a good example of that is probably about a year ago a company came to me and they managed PPC for small two small businesses pay per click ads. Facebook called all that stuff and they had automated wegen are Funland. OK look you know we have a conversion group that you know test and optimize our clients campaigns blank pages and emails and all that. But for our

own stuff we can’t seem to get a lift. And we know you’re on the Macleods now thinks we want to see what you can do. OK. So I went and I analyzed everything. And the first thing that came to me was that it was all about you know make X amount of money more with us. You know you’re going to make a lot more money with us. I was like I’m like zero and just based on my research of their potential client and the existing customers was that is that really what’s going to push them over the edge or is it you know what are they missing out on or

what’s what’s fear or frustration is happening without you know this. My clients services voice. So I sit up on the Facebook add to tests you know what I came up with is how much do you think your average client that you get has been wasting how much they’ve been losing by not using you.

They gave me the figure an accurate figure or you know best guests. And so we tested that and there was nothing about making you know X more it was all about you’re losing X per month.

And right away 27 percent increase from the Facebook ads.

And I said you’re going to I want you to apply that now to the landing page to the e-mails. I want to actually change the Web and our So then change everything and everything increased across the board.

Wow big big difference.

And another key thing was just another awesome benefit of my classes. Again you you peel away a lot of dogma is on testing is I gave them on their Facebook that I give them a new headline new copy new call to action and when they’re ready to start testing like OK we’re going to test the headline now. Wait wait what do you mean you test the headline and just the headline the cottonseed I honor no where just gets us the headline because we want to make sure what changes what I said no.

First of all that makes no sense you’re going to change a new headline it’s going to be incongruent with the copy and the CTA too. Who cares what works. You guys can’t get a lift. So if we test everything and it increases you know your bottom line by 27 percent who cares.

You can go back and test again if you want to test little things. But when you really need a lift Who cares what actually does that’s what McCloud’s calls a radical redesign. Right. So you don’t have a completely different direction kind of thing. Yeah. So you don’t have to.

I will mention a name but a huge company. They’re revered around the world for their marketing prowess. And I’ve worked with them same thing on the landing pages. Oh no we can’t. We can only test the headline and there had been testing already by themselves for a year and they’re testing little things here and there you know point five percent increase 1 percent increase 2 percent increase. And I’m just I was just like blown away that they’re stuck in dogma that they can’t test more than one thing at a time.

Yeah I think that’s what you know. That’s what people seem to be. And you’re dead right on this. Is this sort of they’ve taken what’s been said and maybe some of those older copyrighting books or people coming up you know about testing or going way back to like Claude Hopkins and so forth.

And they seem to be very very narrowly applying it in a sort of like like you said a dogmatic fashion where it’s like it’s only can be done this way. And when you’re looking for a bigger homerun and bigger left going in completely direction new direction you can’t just do that with the headline per se. So that’s a very important point I think for people understand is you’re talking about trying something completely new with a whole new premise kind of thing. So maybe you know when it comes to you know I learned to e-mail primarily from Mac fury and I started reading e-mails. You know he was a guy who was teaching at the time I started to learn some of the stuff.

You know he’s got a very distinctive style and you know he was big on sending he you know saying he would send as many e-mails as humanly possible for up to him. He wasn’t lazy you know and so forth. Let me speak to some of the frequency issues as he encountered these discussions with people all the time and I’ve sort of have my own opinions of course but as someone who’s been in the game as long as you have let me talk about some of the frequency related issues to e-mails and what really matters clicks open sales with you know what the deal is.

Sure. Yeah. Coincidentally Scott wrote a couple of solos for Matt that did really well.

Now one of them was his e-mail caught writing workshop with a h know products of that got me.

That’s going to be included in the volume two of his Hustler’s. Cool awesome awesome.

Yeah so fitting deal has been around forever. The first person that I’ve actually seen evidence was a former I think is that a Navy pilot is actually through Scott because one of the sells letters in like early 2000 2001 was for internet marketing seminar recordings for Gary halber.

And there is a guy there that was big on daily. So I’ve actually had to help clients that have followed sending daily systems like step by step find how to do daily emails and it’s destroyed their business. So a lot of it depends on your market. Who you are your own authority. I see a lot of people teaching stuff that applies to them because they have a built in authority like me personally. It’s not that I don’t teach anything that I do but most of it is what I do

for my clients because I know that people get on my list specifically because oh yeah you got to get on Jason’s list he’s the Lord of email marketing blah blah blah. So I could pretty much say all kinds of crap. You know one word e-mails and people would buy or respond or whatever. Right. So you have to take that into consideration. And the thing you don’t hear when people say Oh I say I changed daily I made more money it is you really don’t cheer in the set up of OK.

So I was e-mailing X and I did a test. It was just I switched to daily. So it perfectly all cases. Were there any sort of details. It’s not that they started sending Galey is that it’s that they said send more frequently. Right. So in my opinion in the majority not all cases but majority cases. It’s not that they started saying daily that they start sending more Fraknoi. So I think that’s a pretty good bet that most people don’t send emails frequently enough.

Now maybe if people are interested in getting in volved with Scott Haines project and continuing Scott’s legacy and updating his course when people get a whole lot of information they can just go to a short.

Copywriting secrets dot com.

OK. Awesome.

And I actually get introduced to bonce. I believe it was 2009. I was doing a project with Tony Flores a make peace Progeria also forgot to mention clean make pieces and break down the sky in a nice way. Tony invited me to the operating system teachers mastermind our get together in San Francisco with John Carleton and bond and Kevin halber were guests there. And the first topic of the day was email and so John Carlson spurred Ascanius So I talked

about for a half an hour to start off the mastermind. Awesome. Yeah that’s how I got to this DUBON and he really loved the fact that I was more evidence based on what works best. And so yeah he started introduce me to Samarth with Caleb and then Scott and I became known as the go to you know source for Howard protegees which is a good group to be associated with.

So people want to get in touch with you directly because I know you have mentioned before you have products and stuff like that can help with peoples email.

How do they get in touch with you personal.

They can go to email response Warrier dot com and thats your email response product. Yes. How do I Creusa respond to any email you sent regardless of whether its daily or every other day or on a responder.

Also Man Well thanks for coming on the show.

Its been a real pleasure having you on youve given some great knowledge semantics for having me.

Everybody else of course will be back next week with another exciting guest hopefully half as entertaining and knowledgeable as Jason

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