Science of Copywriting Weekly Newsletter Issue 14

If you’ve just joined the Weekly Newsletter, you’re in for a treat. Saturday’s post described the benefits of the world’s most powerful formula.

A formula that’s been used forever. A formula that transforms the lives of not just the person using it, but everyone who comes into contact with it.

I asked the question what would it be worth to know it? And the answer was “nothing”. But that was a lie. In monetary terms, name your price. Whatever that is, that’s what it’s worth.

In terms of human cost, it is THE most costly formula there is. Nothing will ever beat this. It can produce the most wealth, and it can cause the most harm.

And no, it’s not Rhetoric (although that plays a massive role). It’s The Big Lie.

We all learn it from birth. The second we get into trouble we feel its power. It’s the most powerful reliever of pain there is (and the most powerful bringer).

Lying gets us out of (and into) trouble. It frees us (for a brief moment) of any responsibility to anything or anyone. It’s used by every con-person in the world.

It’s used by countries to fool the people, and it’s used by politicians to gain access to power.

But lying on its own is not enough. You have to know how to use the right words. And that’s where The Rhetoric comes in.

First you need The Big Idea. In the 2019 UK election, The Big Idea was “Get Brexit Done”. It defied the odds. It was repeated more times than any other slogan (in the USA’s 2016 election it was “Make America Great Again”).

Both will be proved to be lies (or at least, the benefits and timing behind the slogans will). How do I know? Because they’re hollow. They’re subjective (not objective) – so they cannot be measured, which means they can never be achieved (not in truth, only in the lie).

Once you’ve got your slogan. Repeat it until you’re so fed up of hearing it, you want to cry. At this point, it’s necessary to repeat it even louder, and continue to repeat it until you get what you want.

That alone won’t do it though. Next up you need to be acutely aware of your enemy (or opponent). Whoever that is, you need to find their Achilles heel (and make one up if there isn’t one).

With that found, you get your next Big Slogan, and repeat that ad-infinitum. Mud always sticks. Keep slinging it.

Trump did this to Hillary Clinton with “Lock Her Up”. The Conservatives did this to Jeremy Corbyn (in the UK) with “Anti-semite”.

Third (and last), you use association (again, just lie about it). Associate the most heinous character you can with your enemy and shout loudly as you can about their similarities. Character assassination is the name of the game for this one.

Repeat all the above for the duration of the campaign. You don’t need anything else other than either a) a large crowd, or b) money, to get and keep the messages alive.

Now, in case you’re bored and wondering what the hell this has to do with copywriting, think about it for a moment. If this is so successful, then why are people not using it all the time in their copy?

The answer is, they are. Most of us just don’t realise it because we’ve never been exposed to it as a formula. You have now.

One caveat. Unless you’re a villain, do all the above without lying. The lying part is the mistake. That’s the road to destruction (yes, you’ll get the same result, but it won’t last, and there’s certainly no satisfaction in cheating).

PS. There are only heroes and villains. Villains never get what they really want. Heroes always do (in the end).

Last Week

Saturday’s post was an example of an open loop. It created a scratch that needed itching. And the only way to itch it was to subscribe to this newsletter (those who didn’t feel the itch are the people who don’t have a strong enough desire, or who weren’t convinced by the copy – that’s life).

If you ever felt imposter syndrome (and wanted to know how to get more clients), you need to read the post on Power. And if you want to know more about business failure, read Belief and Dream.

If you’re new to copywriting, the links to Editing and Fear are a must.

Here are all the links:







With my love,

Quentin Pain

Science of Copywriting


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