• David de Souza

How to Write Better Copy

Updated: Jul 7



This book provides simple, actionable advice to help you write better copy. My favorite nugget: Keep the momentum going by asking a question at the end of a paragraph. Do you want learn 8 more insights? (Do you see what I did there?)


Want to dig deeper than the core principles? Check out:

Core Principles


I have taken the lessons from 'How to Write Better Copy' and distilled them into 9 core principles:


  1. Appeal to the reader's self-interest.

  2. Use empathy to overcome resistance, build rapport and make your copy more engaging.

  3. Suggest. Don't sell

  4. Use juxtaposition. The reader must use their intelligence to reconcile and gets a 'smile in the mind'.

  5. Be abruptive: For example: New, Announcing, Now

  6. The most powerful short word is 'you'.

  7. Use short sentences and paragraphs.

  8. Keep the momentum going by asking a question at the end of a paragraph.

  9. Include the problem the reader has within the headline.


Remember These Core Principles:


I've condensed the core principles into an image, making memorization easier. Use this image, its caption, and Quizlet as a memory aid to help you remember the 80/20 from this book:

If you have a problem with the appearance of a short, abruptive man, imagine an empathetic juxtaposition

Q: What does 'you' refer to?

A: The most powerful short word is 'you'.

Q: What does 'problem' refer to?

A: Include the problem the reader has within the headline.


Q: What does 'short' refer to?

A: Use short sentences and paragraphs.


Q: What does 'abruptive' refer to?

A: Be abruptive: For example: New, Announcing, Now


Q: What does 'empathy' refer to?

A: Use empathy to overcome resistance, build rapport and make your copy more engaging.


Q: What does 'juxtaposition' refer to?

A: Use juxtaposition. The reader must use their intelligence to reconcile and gets a 'smile in the mind'.



Let me know how these summaries can be improved? Contact me via Email (david@thisdomain.co) or on Twitter



The 80/20 of Worldly Wisdom: