talkingshrimpnyc talkingshrimpnyc

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Laura Belgray  Copy Expert & Unapologetic Lazy Person |Non-Sucky Copy Tips to give your biz some damn personality. Click to get freebies + go down the rabbit hole.👇

I think I need to be more slutty. (But not like I was in my 20s.)
Repost from @frynaomifry. I don’t even know her. I feel slutty already!

Oh no, I'm torn! I posted this thought a couple of years ago and I stand by it:⠀

👉All this "Cheers to my haters" business. All these posts about "Everyone's just jealous. And I can understand why."⠀

"Just deleted another hater. Bye, Felicia." ⠀

That's a haterbrag. ⠀

We get it. It's supposed to show how resilient and daring and willing to be unpopular you are, but we all know you're secretly trying to slip in that you're as big and controversial as like, Kanye. 👈⠀

But now...I have my first haters! (That I know of.) And I'm kind of excited? And want to tell you about it?⠀

So, this week I woke up to a google alert: offering my Money piece from last month about earning $6k per day writing quotes for IG as an "excellent hate read." 😂 ⠀

I think that's how I'd see it too, if it weren't mine. ⠀

I happened to be asked for a phone interview about the piece just this week, and this new one (swipe for image, link in bio) is the result. It cites tweets saying things like "I want to fling myself into the sun." Most of those were from underpaid journalists. (Which is pretty much all journalists.) Who can blame them? ⠀

I think the followup piece helps abate the hate. Ish? (To be clear, I didn't say "anyone" could, too. But anyone has the opportunity.)⠀

I made the mistake of reading some of the mean tweets. WHY? #dummy

In an effort to be thick-skinned, I pictured myself reading them aloud on Jimmy Kimmel. Like Ryan Gosling and Dolly Parton. I also reminded myself that they're commenting on the idea of me, not actual me. And that I say mean things about Gwyneth Paltrow and it doesn't hurt her one bit.⠀

Question is, should I hate myself for haterbragging? If I do, I might brag about it.⠀

Find the followup interview with me in my bio link or at:⠀⠀

Life is better when you can go to the corner for coffee and then come back and drink it and start work without changing pants. It’s also better when pant holes are easy to put your feet through. That’s every bit as profound as you think it is.

😱Oh no! How can that be? But my passion is...MY PASSION! I'm so passionate about it!⠀

Anyone who's ever had to hire for a cool job has had to wade through a zillion declarations of "I'm so passionate about my work, and this job would allow me to truly live my passion!" ⠀

If you look for someone to do anything for you online, you'll find everyone and her cousin has a website crowing "This mission is my passion."⠀

Remember The Apprentice? (Unfortunately, you can't forget it.) Whenever a certain orange, infantile, then-harmless reality show host asked "Why should I fire him and not you," the contestant would say, "I'm really passionate about what I do."⠀

Well guess what? No one cares. OK, YOU care. But your passion is about you, not what you do for us. THAT'S what we care about. ⠀

There's too much focus on passion in online copy, and too much focus in general. People will coach you to say no to work that's "not your passion." ⠀

Especially if you're new to what you do, that's sucky advice. Read today's story on the blog to see what I mean. ⠀

(It involves crying grownups, ice cream, a guy named Puff, and team-building exercises led by people in scoopneck leotards. 🍦😭) ⠀

Link in bio. ⠀

ps - If you're on my list, you have the whole story waiting for you in your inbox. Not on my list? Get on it. It's my passion. (Like you care.)⠀

Well gosh, it's my birthday! I always like those "x number of things I've learned by age x" posts, but for reasons expressed in #14, I present:⠀


1. Don’t sit behind an empty seat in the movie theater. Sit behind one that’s taken - by somebody short. Now, your view is protected by zoning.⠀

2. Likewise, if you’re traveling alone, book an aisle seat in a row where the window seat is already reserved. Now, if it’s not a full flight, you might get an empty seat next to you. If you book one with nobody in the row, you’ll probably get seated next to a couple. Or, worse, the 500-lb brothers who sat next to me on a recent flight.⠀
3. At the risk of repeating myself: It’s ok to repeat yourself. Your stories, big message, whatever people like to hear. ⠀

4. If you get a text or email that pisses you off, don’t reply right away. Especially late at night or 1st thing in the morning. ⠀
5. If you get a subscriber email rudely telling you why they just unsubscribed, don’t reply at all. Especially not w “Thanks for the feedback, asshole.” Not that I'd know.⠀
6. “Asking for a friend” is over right? Not asking for a friend.⠀

7. When you shop for clothes online, open an incognito window. Then they can’t retarget you with FOMO-bait ads like “buy it before someone else does.” ⠀
8. Losing a parent sucks but can also be a weirdly special experience. You get to love and appreciate that parent in a new way, & you get to see all your old friends and realize how much they love you. Your new friends, too. Great even if you don’t have the appetite to enjoy the Greenberg's cookies and 2nd Ave Deli pastrami sandwiches they brought to the shiva.⠀
ARGH! Too long for IG! Link in bio to read the rest. ⠀
Lesson # 15 might be, life's too short to spend your whole birthday trying to turn every "and" into "&" just to make a caption fit on Instagram. ⠀

Pic by @ericmichaelpearson - I'm supposed to save these for my website but F that, it's my birthday.

Everyone uses that circle diagram. Big circle: YOUR COMFORT ZONE. Little circle outside that: WHERE THE MAGIC HAPPENS. Well, you know what? I think those circles intersect!I think about it every time I speak on stage. Just finished a speaking gig (Copy Chief Live, led by the phenomenal @kev_rogers_here) and yes, I'm so nervous every time I speak that my teeth chatter and my body goes numb with cold right before I go on stage. I clutch a mug of coffee to keep feeling in my hands. And yes, I'm always thrilled that I did it, and congratulating myself on doing something scary. Nothing beats the euphoria of coming off the stage and having the tech person unclip the mic battery from your waistband. Yes, it's magic. ⠀

But I also like the magic of things I do easily and well, where I can say, "Sure! I'm comfortable doing that." ⠀

Kevin invited me to be part of a panel at the end of the event. I was like, um, sit on a stool and answer questions? Hell yeah I will! That's in my comfort zone! And it was magic. ⠀

Another example: Going to dinner. That's in my comfort zone. And I do it well. And it's magic. So. Yeah.⠀

Mmm, comfort zone. ⠀

One more: writing emails to my list. I'm very comfortable doing that. And I don't mind telling you, my emails are magic. If you want to be a part of the magic, sign up and get in the Shrimp Zone. Link in bio. ⠀

I don't have to expand on that but I will. There's a big whiff of fake-namaste BS about all these aggro marketers who claim multi-7-figure success and outline their morning routine with step 5 (after 3 - meditate while IV-ing bulletproof coffee, and 4 - jump in "cold water source" that's actually a Rubbermaid bucket of ice) being "I ask myself, 'How can I be of service today?'" Sorry, I just don't buy it. Sure, some people approach business that way. But I'll bet it's a small fraction of people who say they do. Most just heard it on a podcast. ⠀

I'm not here to serve. I'm happy to, but that's not what gets me up in the morning. Mostly, I like writing some fun shit and sending it in an email. You can sign up through the link in my bio. ⠀

Tip your server! ⠀

[closes today!] When I started writing blog posts and emails to my list, I had nothing to sell, really. ⠀

All I knew was, "I want to tell my weird stories & entertain people & make them feel like they're not the only crazy ones."⠀

I guess I wanted to connect, though that's not how I thought of it.⠀

Not everyone liked that.⠀

I heard from one dudely dude, an internet marketing bro, who'd subscribed to Talking Shrimp because his wife told him to.⠀

After a couple of emails from me, the bro wrote back: "I like your writing style, but I'm waiting for you to sell me something."⠀

Next one: "You still haven't made an offer. I'll unsubscribe if you don't soon."⠀

3rd: "Well, I warned you. I've just unsubscribed. Good luck!"⠀

Other people, though?⠀

They wrote back to my emails, "THANK YOU for being you and making me laugh! I feel like someone gets me."⠀

Over time, they let me know what they wanted me to offer: copywriting help, mentoring, permission & tools to be themselves in their writing & in their business.⠀

My biz ideas, & the biz itself, have all come from connecting w people through copy, even when that was all I had to offer: connection.⠀

Yes, you need good copy to sell. Without sales, you don't have a business. ⠀

But copy isn’t just about selling.⠀

Some of us don't know what we want to sell yet.⠀
And some of us do, but the real joy comes from pouring our heart onto the page & arousing tears, laughs, or full-body goosebumps in people.⠀

Yesterday, I heard from my friend Gry.⠀
She sent me a voice memo, crying.⠀
When I pressed play, her sniffling made me think her apartment had burned down. But she was happy.⠀
She said she'd sent out a love letter to her list, pouring her soul & all her copy skills into it.⠀

"Responses are POURING into my inbox from people thanking me and saying how much my words moved them. It's such a great feeling. It was just a letter, not even selling anything! I never knew I could write like this!"⠀

Expressing yourself & using your voice to connect with people offers value on its own.⠀
If seeing responses from thrilled, engaged fans pour in excites you, get in The Copy Cure. Link in bio

“It’s terrible light for a photo! I’m pretending to smile!” - @ecklers in every picture we take. At least when he holds the camera, it’s harder for him to block his face or give the finger. Happy Birthday to my camera-shy Boo. The best everything in the land. I’m the luckiest!

🎙Sounding human - it always looks so easy...and then it's so hard. ⠀
The thought sounds good in your head, but then on the page it sounds like Professor Salesy SlimeBot 2000. 🤖🎓🏷⠀

That's not your fault. Blame the English teachers who crossed out all the fun in your essay with a big, red pen (that's their job, we have to learn the rules, but then it's so hard to unlearn them). ⠀

Blame the corporate or academic job where you got reamed for being informal (not to mention frozen by office air conditioning set at Canada Goose parka temps). ⠀

Blame your inner a-hole critic, who's yelling at you that no one will take you seriously if you write like that.⠀

👯‍♀️@marieforleo and I can deprogram you with The Copy Cure! ⠀

In fact, Marie had some quick tips to help you sound like a person right away in our free class. If you missed it, or want to review, catch the replay. ⠀


Same with enrollment for the full Copy Cure program. Doors clang shut Monday. Clang! If you're going to join us, join us. I hope you will. ⠀

Link in my bio. ⠀

Get in, you personality-filled person you.⠀

✏️Good copy feels natural - like a 1-to-1 conversation.⠀

✏️Good copy makes people feel relieved that someone gets them.⠀

✏️Good copy surprises and delights your audience.⠀

✏️Good copy makes people wet themselves -- just a little, not too much - with excitement that they found you.⠀

✏Good copy sounds like a person talking, not like a business advertising. Or a professor professing. Or a robot roboting.⠀

✏Good copy puts stripes on your shirt. I don't know what that means, but it sounds better to me than hair on your chest.⠀

✏️Good copy makes the sale, which makes your business.⠀

⭐️Want to write good copy? ⭐️⠀

📓Join me and @marieforleo for The Copy Cure. Doors close Monday at 6pm, so now’s the time. We have no idea when we’ll reopen it. We hope you’ll join! ⠀
Link in bio, duh.⠀

Oh, ps - the free class Marie taught, 5 Writing Mistakes That Are Killing Your Sales, was on 🔥🔥🔥! The replay is up for a short while, grab it from my profile link.

🛠I can't think of a single business that doesn't rely on words. Are you going to say, what about drug dealers? Even *they* brand their product. They have to come up with names to stamp on the little envelopes so you come back to their corner and not someone else's. (I admit it, I get all my intel from HBO's The Wire.)⠀

Point is, you can't just build a business, or put up a product or service and some pretty pictures, and hope everyone will line up at the door. You need the right words to get them there, and to get excited about buying. ⠀

Know what helps you succeed even more than knowing how to write copy? Enjoying it. The most successful business owners I know have learned how to have fun with copywriting. ⠀

If "fun with copywriting" sounds like an oxymoron, you need to get your sweet little tuchus into The Copy Cure's free writing class (taught by the one and only @marieforleo) on Wednesday. ⠀

You might walk away a little bit in love with writing copy. You'll definitely walk away better at it. ⠀

Bonus! Watch live and you'll have a chance to get a personal copy makeover -- from ME. ⠀

Hit the link in my bio. See you there!⠀

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