“For as long as I can remember, I wanted to be a copywriter…”

Jody-Raynsford_MdS-Finish

Jody Raynsford

Well, that’s not entirely true.

Hi, I’m Jody Raynsford, direct response copywriter and marketing consultant.

Right now I AM a direct response copywriter, I’ve written sales letters which have generated six figure revenues for my clients, primarily in the health, fitness and self development niches.

Fortunately, I’m not a one-trick pony and my expertise extends to email copy and campaigns, with clients who use my words to engage, enthuse and make their readers look forward to hearing what they have to say.

Like any copywriter worth their salt, I’ve studied the best from John Carlton, Gary Halbert, Dan Kennedy, Joe Sugarman, Jody-Meets-MarketersEugene Schwartz and David Ogilvy, as well as the email masters, Ben Settle and Andre Chaperon.

Before I was a copywriter and marketer, I was a health and fitness journalist. I’ve written and appeared in publications such as the Telegraph, Independent, Men’s Running and Running Fitness, among many.

For just as long, I’ve blogged about health and fitness and presented to scores of fitness marketing pros about the right way to engage audiences.

Now, we all know good writers don’t necessarily (in fact, I’d argue very rarely) equal great copywriters. Fortunately, I’m able to bring both disciplines together to offer a unique proposition to the people I work with.

Combining direct response copywriting and content marketing strategy, I help businesses get to grips with understanding and engaging their target audience in meaningful and, ultimately, profitable ways.

Today, I’m fortunate to be able to use my marketing skills to help fitness info marketers and entrepreneurs who I can relate to – and I’m guessing you fit the bill. It’s the winning cocktail of unblinking determination mixed with adventurous naiveté which serves us well, personally and professionally.

Turning ‘extreme’

I wasn’t always this way. Ten years ago, I was hacking out a living as a journalist in London on an entertainment magazine. It was a pretty good gig and loaded with great perks.

Parties, film premieres, more parties, drinking and plenty of excess were just some of things I had to endure as I plodded away through a slow-burn journalism career writing to make money for a faceless corporation.

Don’t get me wrong, I was good at my job… it just, well, didn’t really seem to be going anywhere.

The late 20s drift, it’s called now and with reason.

Back then, I couldn’t understand why a talented, reasonably clever guy, like me, wasn’t making the money I deserved to make.

I’m sure you know the feeling…

… working long hours, going beyond the call of duty when deadlines needed to be met and, even though you had a perk or two worth shouting about, sometimes you just wished you could trade it in for a semblance of control.

I found myself in a rut I couldn’t escape from. Suddenly something snapped and I made two rather hasty decisions, the effects of which continue to ripple through my life:

  • I quit my job. After another wasted day earning money for a boss I couldn’t stand and who didn’t appreciate the great staff who mitigated for all his mistakes, I resigned. No discussion, no thinking about it, I decided to leave there and then. And so I started working for myself. A life-changing move only surpassed by my decision to…
  • Run across the Sahara desert. I wasn’t a runner. I wasn’t an athlete in any way. If anything, my life was more academic. You were more likely to find me deep in a book than tearing up a running track or lifting in the gym. But one day, after reading about a crazy race in the desert only a few hundred people have ever completed (the Marathon des Sables), something just clicked (or broke..) in my brain and I knew I had to run it.

And so three years later, I did. I ran 151 miles in 6 days across the western Sahara in heats up to 47 degrees… and this was only the beginning. In those intervening years, I’d gone from an overweight, ill-disciplined couch potato to an extreme fitness fanatic who thinks nothing of going out for back-to-back 30 miles runs on the weekend.

Running across the Alps

Running across the Alps

One part of my life affected the other and my mindset for success changed. When we do these physical and endurance feats others seem to shirk from, we understand the extent to which control lies in our own hands. This is true of our personal and our professional lives and, for me, it was no different.

Adventures in marketing

For years, I’d been struggling along and now I had the understanding to know with discipline and a plan, everything was achievable.

Jody WTR conference

Speaking at a blogging conference at The Runner’s Show 2013

Like a typical journalist, I’d sneered at marketers and copywriters. I soon found out the joke was on me. Forced upon me by necessity, I made the transition from being a writer to a marketer of my skills and quickly found it all came naturally. Turns out I was pretty good at this copywriting lark.

When companies came a knocking, I discovered another surprise. There was a distinct thrill at transforming the fortunes of a business which was failing into one which was thriving. And I liked it. Of course, I experienced all the highs and lows of a marketer trying to make their way. I tested relentlessly, make all the right and wrong mistakes and learned to understand the nuances of communicating to different audiences with an aim to ask them to buy.

With a childlike curiosity I sought out as much knowledge as I could find, devouring content by Claude C. Hopkins, Gary Halbert, John Carlton, Joe Sugarman, Dan Kennedy, Jon Benson and Joe Polish among many, many others. I still have the insatiable appetite for learning, as all marketers should.

Living the dream

And now, here I stand. Enjoying the independence I craved all those years ago so I can work where I want, take vacations when it suits me and never feel guilt I’m missing time with my family.

Enjoying being alive during one of the most exciting times in history and surrounded by other inexorable talents from which to draw inspiration.

Enjoying the satisfaction I’m helping others fulfil their potential while keeping my copywriting and marketing arsenal engaged for projects which interest me. Project work keeps the blade sharp but it’s the marketers eager to learn and apply who keep the fire burning.

And I particular enjoy the sensation of being able to enjoy getting out and grinding the miles out in the hills when the mood takes me.

With Piranha Marketing's Joe Polish

With Piranha Marketing’s Joe Polish

Please take a look at these pages. On here, you’ll find hundreds of valuable free resources and blog posts of interest to any entrepreneur in the health and fitness space. If you want something more hands-on and fast-track to building your business, coaching and mentoring opportunities occasionally arise alongside a range of products designed to help you take your product to the next level.

Whether you’re starting out in the game or already have the stripes and want to discover ways of exploding your business into a totally different sphere of wealth, there’s something for you on this site.

Cheers,

Jody Raynsford