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The Architecture of Persuasion by Michael Masterson – 5 Stars

The full title of this book by Michael Masterson is

The Architecture of Persuasion: How to Write Well-Constructed Sales Letters

In my review posted on Amazon.co.uk, I gave the book Five Stars. This means it is Excellent and Very Highly Recommended.

Here is my review.

Very interesting with an emphasis on the teaser, headline and lead

I read a lot of business books and especially about marketing. I have to admit many of them are quite dry and only appeal to my inner geek who wants more knowledge and understanding.

Thus book is different.

First the introduction to the theory is written with style and should give you are clear understanding of why copywriters do what they do when writing a sales letter. I liked the way the author explained how the different parts of the letter appeal to the emotional and rational parts of the reader’s brain. Too often you can see an overdone emotional appeal which screams hype and makes the reader feel manipulated.

It then goes on to explain how an Indiana Jones style character can find love using the principles involved with writing a sales letter. To add a sense of urgency, the task has to be achieved within a day to secure an inheritance.

This metaphor crops up throughout the book but don’t let it fool you. The book is packed with copywriting concepts which will give you plenty to think about. It argues in favour of an indirect approach to deepen interest without scaring away the potential customer. It also argues in favour of using complex emotions rather than appealing to the fear or greed staples.

How should read it? It’s written more for (inexperienced ) copywriters who want to improve their skills than for marketing/business experts or business owners although they will also benefit.

There are a huge number of copywriting books and I encourage you to read the masters from the past. Few modern authors have the “been there and done it” record of Mark Ford writing as Michael Masterson. If you don’t know the name, he helped Bill Bonner grow Agora into a huge information marketing business.

It’s stronger as a guide for information marketing and B2C than it is for B2B copywriters who the author acknowledges should use a direct approach.

You can buy it from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com.


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