Powerful Product Descriptions (Part One)

Illustration by HikingArtist.

Illustration by HikingArtist.

I’ll be blunt: most of our industry’s ad copy is horrible. Especially online product descriptions. Even the well-written, grammatically correct copy lacks the oomph necessary to sell a product.

It’s no wonder magicians want flashy photos and video trailers. For generations we’ve bored them to death with text descriptions.

But that can change. Starting with you. You don’t have to be a professional writer to produce easy-to-understand copy with high conversation; you just have to learn a couple of techniques.

In part one of this series, I am going to teach you a dirt-simple method to transform writing that blows into marketable prose. Follow the directions below and you will see instant results in your own writing.

Our example is a fake magic trick titled, “Jonas Powers’ Stage-Size Appearing Chair from Box”

Here is an example of the type of ad copy I’m asked to spice up on a regular basis:

Finally, an appearing chair barstool for stage work. If you are looking for a signature stage trick start with the stage size appearing barstool chair by Jonas Powers to open your show, or to close your show.

At first glance, the copy isn’t terrible. It’s a good start. In fact, it’s just good enough others will use it without question.

However, the opening is weak—nobody has really been waiting for this trick, stage-size or otherwise. The middle doesn’t provide enough information to move the reader to a buying decision, and the end doesn’t lead to the next paragraph, presumably where the reader will find a call to action.

Compare to my edited version:

Flat box, instant barstool! Open your show with the self-working production of a full-size barstool, or sit back and relax for a funny finale. It’s the durable, portable, audience-floorable Chair Box by Jonas Powers!

A visual image of the routine is revealed in the opening line. The second sentence, though it might feel a little long, illustrates the range of the product. The last line introduces the creator of the effect and leaves the reader wanting more—the call to action.

The concept here is to pack each paragraph with as much information as possible without weighing down the text. How? Instead of writing the whole paragraph prose style, I first wrote the phrases I wanted to use as free verse poetry, then I strung them together.

You can tell exactly what I did by reverse engineering the text.

From the sample paragraph, select the best one to five word segments and put them under the paragraph with a dash. Do this four times, the average length of a poetry stanza.

Finally, an appearing chair barstool for stage work. If you are looking for a signature stage trick start with the appearing barstool chair by Jonas Powers to open your show, or to close your show.

– appearing chair barstool

– for stage work

– signature stage trick

– appearing barstool chair by Jonas

The dashes represent bullet points (major selling points in a product description formatted as a list). The phrases above are what the writer is actually saying in the original paragraph. Pretty bland, huh? The whole paragraph is really just the title over and over again.

Lets try the same technique with my re-write:

Flat box, instant barstool! Open your show with the self-working production of a full-size barstool, or sit back and relax for a funny finale. It’s the durable, portable, audience-floorable Chair Box by Jonas Powers!

– Flat box, instant barstool!

– self-working production full-size barstool

– relax for a funny finale

– portable Chair Box by Powers!

With some punctuation, these bullet points could actually be used in ad copy. Here’s the tweak:

  • Flat box, instant barstool!
  • Sit back and relax! Funny finale!
  • Self-working! Full-size barstool!
  • Chair Box: The Portable Powers!

All I did to make one paragraph better than the other, was to say something worth writing about. My version may sound hyped-up—it may have flare that wasn’t there in the first paragraph—but I didn’t lie. Good magic deserves a product description that does it justice. It’s okay to be excited, as long as you’re honest. It’s a technique known as poetic license.

Hidden Opportunities Find Magicians

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“Image by Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net”

I received a call the other day and thought I would share it with you:

Q. Will you teach everyone a magic trick during/after the show?

A. That’s a great question! We used to teach a trick during the show, but through experience, we have found it actually detracts from the magic. We want your audience to be amazed and entertained as much as possible and for you to have a memorable event.

With your permission, we set up a magic table in the back of the room. We sell a few easy to do magic tricks that audience members can take home and share their love of magic with family and friends. Of course you can prepay for everyone to receive a kit for free. That’s a great option and gives guest something to do after the show…

A very simple way to get away from and handle a semi insulting question.

“There’s a big difference between a demonstrator and an entertainer.”

What you don’t want to do. Tell your potential customer you refuse to teach a trick and you are way above that! The customer does not understand how it works and is genuinely asking a question. We know, asking a magician to teach a trick during a show, is like asking a band how to play the instruments.

What’s the hidden opportunity? Select six to twelve tricks audience members can buy directly from you. Put your name, email, and website on all the instructions. Put them all together as a package deal or magic kit. This gives you repeat customers and sets you up for new ones. You can easily double, triple or make even more off your “dealer room”. Some magicians even reduce the rate of pay, just to set up that booth at the end of the night.

Have an intermission for some sales during the show. It works best with a partner, but don’t worry if you don’t have one. This also gives you a nice break and set up time for the second half of the show.

Let WholesaleMagic.com know you want special instructions or Magic Wand Scrolls and they will be happy to work with you. They can even give you ideas to push.

Jay Leslie

Batteries Not Included…

Batteries_Not_IncludedI stumbled upon this trick by accident and it quickly became one of those “gems” you find yourself performing at every opportunity. It is contagious. Whenever I teach a fellow magician “Batteries Not Included,” they end up performing it just as often.

When I perform the trick, it is usually because there happen to be two batteries lying around; a friend is changing out the batteries in a remote for instance. Double A are best, but you can sometimes do the trick with D’s and C’s too.

You can carry a couple of batteries in your pocket to perform anytime.

“Did you know those batteries are magnetic?” Pick them up and lay one next to the other lengthwise. Nothing happens. “Oh wait, you have to rub them together to get a static charge.” Now, hold one battery and the other is magically – supposedly magnetically – stuck to it. When your friend tries it, there is no such magnetism.

If you would like to learn how the trick is done and share with your friends and family, Click here and place a FREE ORDER of Batteries Not Included.

Simple Strategy Transforms Your Business

Photo by Mike Kirby.

Photo by Mike Kirby.

The internet tossed a stick of lit dynamite into the old saying, “You can’t sell from an empty cart.”

Today, that small phrase sums up the business model of many small-to-medium businesses online. The internet itself is an empty cart in some respects. There are whole companies that actually sell turnkey “empty carts.”

In the magic business, it’s okay to operate an empty cart—or a somewhat empty cart; the business shouldn’t be completely hollow. If magic stores had to stock everything they sell on their website, magicians would have limited access to supplies and would need to do business with more stores—a shipping nightmare for the magician.

Instead, it’s a shipping nightmare for magic shops!

There is a rule of economy in play here: shipping costs per item increases as volume decreases.

If you’re not doing the business you were a few years ago, then chances are your shipping costs—even if well-managed—are really high right now. Every time you order one item to service one customer, you are paying a percentage of profit to shipping that you would have saved if it were part of a larger parcel meant to service more customers.

Fortunately, there is an easy way to offset these increased costs.

Once a month, call a vendor and inquire about their newest items. Focus on their top three and buy a dozen of one. Push the item through your newsletter and feature it on your website.

When you get down to two remaining units, call and order another dozen. Keep the item featured on your site and promote it to your list again. Continue doing this until it stops selling. By this time, it’s the next month, repeat the process with a new trick.

This simple concept can and will transform your business. Eventually, you will earn thirty-day net with your vendor and you will develop a relationship with them that may include discounts—even more profit.

Cornering the Market on Best Sellers

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Instead of gambling your investment on a new product that hasn’t proven it’s worth, take an item that was a best seller and re-release it. Image by 2bgr8

Competition for new items with best seller potential is so fierce that it can be near impossible for small shops to compete. Size isn’t the only factor, even the largest retail entities cannot capture the exclusive every time, which is why they often re-release an old item. If done properly, you can corner the market and take a huge volume of sales.

Hindsight is 20/20. Instead of gambling your investment on a new product that hasn’t proven it’s worth, take an item that was a best seller—it can be two years old or absolute vintage—and announce it like a new product. If your competitors have this item on their website, but do not genuinely stock it, then they may be coming to you to buy it.

Here is a quick guide on how to corner the market and make your product re-release campaign a huge success:

NEVER…

  • Change the Title: You don’t want people who already have the item to buy it twice or for people to accuse you of ripping off the original
  • Call it New: If it is an old product, don’t advertise it using the word “new.” It isn’t necessary or productive.
  • Remove the Creator’s Name: Give credit where credit is due, it’s the magician’s code.
  • Re-Release a Crappy Product: Once was enough for that item. If it isn’t good, it shouldn’t have been out there in the first place, let alone re-released with your effort and market force behind it.
  • Wait to the Last Minute to Promote: Start the build up in advance. As soon as you have an item make a vague announcement on Twitter and then keep it going.
  • Use this Technique Only Once: Find what works, and replicate your success throughout the year. Corner the market on twelve products, and you’re now a pretty tough competitor.

ALWAYS…

  • Do Your Research: Record items you are being asked about that are no longer available, and stock them. Track the popular searches on your own website. Talk to a jobber about items that used to be popular and are available in quantity.
  • Re-Write the Product Description: Refreshing the ad copy is an excellent way to breathe new life into a magic product. Add information that makes it current and ties it to today.
  • Spruce up the Picture(s): Especially on vintage product. Give the sales graphic a new coat of paint—or redesign it completely—to fit the current trends. Grunge was the thing, but might be over the top today. Many young magicians are growing out of their entry-point shops and moving on to pro outfits.
  • Shoot a Demo Video: Include some sort of video in the description, even if it is just you talking about and pitching the item—show the item on screen in your hands. People like to see something—the trick if possible, the packaging if nothing else.
  • Include Bonus Item(s): If you cannot get a bulk price, offer a bonus item or kit to go with it and raise the price. If it is a DVD, include the props your customers need to get the most use out of the product.
  • Offer an Introductory Price: When you announce the product, give a discount for customers who buy it within the first three days.
  • Contact the Creator: Ask the creator of the trick to mention your renewed interest on their social media or to their list. Maybe interview them and post an article you can both promote—a magic magazine might publish it too. If the trick does well, offer to buy the rights to the item.
  • Buy Them All: Call your vendors. If one outfit has a dozen units, another has three dozen, and so on, buy them all. Make sure nobody else has them in stock. When you talk to the creator, buy their stock too, or ask them to give you a ninety-day exclusive. If there is no demand on the items anymore, an exclusive is pretty easy to get from independents.
  • Buy at a Bulk Price: When you are buying up all these units, get a good price. Buying is half the battle. Negotiations are easy with jobbers. Just ask for the best price. That first number they give you is probably it. Remember, they work on the smallest margins in the industry.
  • Offer Wholesale: Once you have everything ready to go, consider putting a paragraph at the bottom of your product description offering wholesale pricing on 3-6 unit minimums. Your competitors may need to pick up a few of your exclusive.
  • Promote EVERYWHERE! Announce your new product on all of your social media, blast your email list, call people, send personal emails, and even contact customers who have placed orders but didn’t buy that one item. Post on forums. Build demand!

Click HERE to get started!

The Poor Boy Billet Knife: Supper Size Me Please

poor_boy_billet_knife_FULLSIZEThe most popular Poor Boy magic product on the market, now in a new size. Bigger billets! Larger Loads! Plus a convenient pocket clip to keep your Poor Boy Billet Knife ready to read minds at a moment’s notice.

The Poor Boy Billet Knife isn’t a fancy magic prop. It’s a simple utility device invented by a magician, used by same, and placed on the market for a reasonable price. Like most magic gimmicks, it’s just “one of those” with “that one thing” attached to it.

However, this Billet Knife is also very effective! There are no moving parts to get stuck or jammed as with other billet knives. One simple move with your thumb and the billet is loaded, every time!

A borrowed dollar bill, signed and folded, vanishes at your fingertips. Pick up a piece of fruit from the table – or the spectator can choose it fresh from the market – and cut it open to reveal their signed dollar inside the fruit!

• Stainless steel blade!
• Durable composite handle!
• Convenient pocket clamp!
• Dirt-simple and damn reliable!
• New size for BIGGER BILLETS
and LARGER LOADS!

The Poor Boy Billet Knife can also open a sealed envelope and secretly inject a small item inside. Reveal the billet right away, or just do the cutting and let your spectator expose the prize!

The maximum FOLDED billet size, without hiding it with your thumb or finger, is about one inch wide by two inches long (compare to the original size). Fully extended knife measures nearly seven inches long. Instructions include the most famous billet trick ever, Bill in Lemon!

What is a billet? A billet is any small object, usually a folded piece of paper and often used in mind reading routines by mentalists. Use the Poor Boy Billet Knife to inject billets into impossible locations!

Three-Year Replacement Coupon Inside! With your Poor Boy Billet Knife, you will receive a replacement coupon. If the product fails within three years, Poor Boy Magic will replace it free; you just pay shipping and handling at actual cost.

Click here to check it out.

Did You Know: Find Magic Dealers Right in the Palm of Your Hands?

 

Magic in the palm of your hands.

Magic in the palm of your hands.

TheSocialMediaPartner.com has joined forces with Magicdealers.com to bring the ultimate magic resource right to your smartphone.

The Magic Dealer App is your handheld resource for Magic Dealers, Latest Magical Effects, Profiles, Convention News, Reviews and More. With our app stay on top of the latest magic news, find the hottest new trick or lecture. You can also join our mailing list and stay on top of all the current happenings in the world of magic.

If you would like to download this Fantastic FREE app search Magic Dealers on iTunes or Google Play and see what your missing!

For Apple iPhone users: Click Here

For Android Phones: Click Here

Magic Chatters: An Untapped Traffic Source

Magic Chatters: An Untapped Traffic Source

Introducing the official MagicWholesale magic chat room! wholesalemagic.com has teamed up with Cybergician—the premier new magic chat community—to deliver our clients an untapped traffic source.

One of the challenges of lone chatrooms scattered across the Internet is that they do not have enough chatters at any given time to keep momentum. Online magic shops, for instance, may only have a few visitors who want to chat throughout the day. When potential chatters get to the chatroom the chat is empty, so they just leave.

Collectively, there are hundreds of magicians who want to chat about this subject we all love—magic! If we have several sites all feeding the same chat, we will pool together one large group of magicians.

That’s why MagicDealers has partnered with Cybergician. Their non-profit business model is unique and fills a valuable niche. Cybergician doesn’t advertise on their own site, but they will build you a custom interface that you can link to and advertise your products and services all you want.

Everyone with a custom site shares the same group of online magicians in which to fill the chat; to keep the momentum.

What does it mean for our group of certified magic stores? Magic Dealers now have a place to meet up with current customers, plus gather new customers! You can chat with fellow magicians through our custom branded interface, or create your own custom chatroom and link to it on your site.

We are one of the very first affiliates to join this massive project and I think it will be big! You can be apart of the magic. Click here to contact me and I will create for you a custom chatroom for your website.

Click here to chat!

Customers Find You No Matter Where You Hide!

750px-IRS46_nasaIntroducing  the Acme Magic Exchange.  Join the exchange and let us know your account number.  Spend only $400.00 a month with Magic City and you get a FREE paid membership.  That’s right,  Maintain $400 a month or more with us and you get a free paid member ship with Acme Magic.

Check out some of the details below:

Do you really want to boost your web traffic?
The excess inventory on Acme Magic banner network is for sale. Here you can rapidly increase your site traffic.

The Acme Magic Banner Exchange is an easy way to convert your advertising dollars into paying customers! Acme Magic serves banners on over 200 PLUS magic-related web sites and is the largest targeted magic banner exchange in the world. Target the magic market with precision!

Other popular websites charge more than $250 a month with very little return. Your ads can hit market saturation in just three months on those sites, yet you’re expected to keep paying big money month after month without results. Pay as little as $50 a month with the Acme Magic Banner Exchange and you’ll constantly convert new customers!

The Acme Magic Banner Exchange GUARANTEES your absolute satisfaction! Get the results you want, or we’ll work with you until you do. It’s Acme Magic, home of the world’s largest magic specific banner exchange!

AcmeMagic

Click Here!
Magic Banner Exchange

 

 

TREND: MagicDealers.com Invade My Stats

16If you have a website, you have the ability to view and monitor your traffic statistics. Most server companies have a statistics program built right in to their administration panel. Many webmasters prefer Google Analytics, one of the best, free traffic monitoring services on the internet.

There are many services out there. I use four—yes, four!—separate analytics programs to measure and tweak the traffic for Wholesalemagic.com.

Recently, my team and I revived MagicDealers.com and officially re-launched the site. I thought for sure this was going to take months of intense, hard work to create a “useful” resource.

Turns out, I was wrong.

When I checked my stats today, MagicDealers.com was my NUMBER ONE REFERRAL SITE in my host’s stats program and NUMBER FIVE in Google Analytics non-search engine referrers. (that’s why I use more than one program to monitor my traffic, they don’t always match up perfect)

What does all this mean? It means we are off to a fantastic start. If you are listed on MagicDealers.com, great! Check your stats. You might already be getting a significant amount of traffic from the directory. If you haven’t signed up yet, what are you waiting for? Start getting MORE TRAFFIC TODAY!

My traffic quick view:

1. MagicDealers.com
2. facebook.com
3. m.facebook.com
4. Newsletter link
5. AcmeMagic.com

Google Analytics:

1-2. Internal Links
3. Newsletter Link
4. acmemagic.com
5. MagicDealers.com

And a nod to both acmemagic.com and magicians-scrapbook.co.uk (#8) they are great resources!

Google