Book Notes: The Boron Letters // Gary Halbert

The Boron Letters - Gary Halbert

Rating: 8/10

Actually a very enjoyable read. Very relatable and NOT just about ‘copywriting’ and advertising. It was almost like having a mentor in my pocket at all times. Great for fundamentals of copywriting and a quick read for anyone looking for solid life advice too.




A positive addition is simply being addicted to something (like exercise) that improves the quality of your life.

What happens when you do roadwork, is that after about 40 minutes, your brain begins to secrete what some people refer to as ‘survival chemicals’

Everyone wants to climb the mountain, but the difference between those at the top and those still on the bottom is simply showing up tomorrow to give it just one more shot.

Develop a healthy disdain for average people

Surround yourself with people who have similar goals or have already become giant successes

Write down your goals and go over them every day, not just once a year.

A fat, sloppy or skinny and weak body tends to broadcast to the world that the owner of that body is lacking self-respect.

You see this guy sending out signals saying: “I’m a pussy. I’m easy. I’m vulnerable” and so on.

Rely on your own strength, instead of somebody else’s compassion

You don’t need to act tough, you need to be tough.

Don’t let anything stand in the way of success. Stick to your routine, prioritise well and have INSANE focus.

Cut those who hold you back

Stop seeking the approval of others and control you destiny

John D Rockefeller: “Nothing is as satisfying as self-reliance”

Self reliance is the real motive of most business men

When it comes to making money, attitude is the most important thing of all

You must learn what people want to buy

People do not read the bible. But they do own it in order to externally display something.

Become a student of the markets

The only advantage you want in marketing: a starving crowd!

People don’t always put their money where their mouth is, but they do put it where their true desires are.

A patient does not tell his surgeon what to do, nor does a player tell his coach.

Although they would never admit it, most clients are relived when someone takes a “don’t mess with me” kind of attitude to their work

Gary Halbert felt the smartest marketers offer all the eskimo’s a deal on heaters!

“Most of the world’s work is done by people who didn’t feel much like getting out of bed”

When you get emotionally jammed up, one of the ways to get unclogged and flowing again, is just to keep moving. Run. Jog. Walk. Write. Do the dishes. Just don’t wait around for a flash from heaven. The key is movement!

How to create a product:

  1. Find the top 3-4 books in the field

  2. Extract the key ideas

  3. Arrange in a logical order

  4. Start writing

  5. Create your report (100’s a report not a book)

How to gather data on markets

  • Clickbank

  • Amazon

  • NYT Non-fiction best seller list

Work with people you love. You don’t need a big list. Just a small list of weirdo’s who like the same stuff you do.

Get specific in your letters (time, location, date, surroundings). It’s appreciated.

Always ask: “How can I make ordering even easier?”

When things are tough, just keep moving in some sort of positive direction.

Don’t be a cheap shot kind of marketer. People resent cheap shots. If you put your mind to work, you won’t have to either.

Get your prospects attention in a relevant way.

Paint the picture for your audience. “Cherry red” paints a very vivid pic.

Only start pitching AFTER you’ve seriously fueled their desire

AIDA = Attention, Interest, Desire and Action.

Keep a pen and paper with you at all times.

You must get attention of the reader before you can build desire and interest. Getting attention is crucial (must be relevant attention too! - one that provides a natural tie in!)

Create desire through describing benefits the prospect would get if he were to buy

You must be VERY, VERY specific and clear with the action that you want the prospect to take. Lead him there by hand.

Building desire:

  1. Describe all the financial benefits

  2. Discover how long it would take to learn on his own

  3. Discover how much he would have to spend on books to acquire the same knowledge

Bullet pattern = specific fact, benefit.

Rewriting notes imprints the messages on your brain. Let it sink in deep.

What is a good writer? Someone who makes things CLEAR.

Write for money...not applause.

You never get a second chance to make a first impression

When a person goes for a job interview, the interviewer makes their impression whether they like the person or not within the first 40 seconds.

Never make a decision under HALT conditions:

Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired.

You can’t always control what happens to you in life, but you do have a lot of control over your responses.

Steps to success:

  1. Find a hot market

  2. Find or create a hot product

  3. Create a direct mail promo that describes the product or service and the benefits of owning the same

  4. Mail it out

  5. Review and analyse

  6. If results are good, keep it up

Use common sense and your chances of success are excellent. Where people go wrong is they try and complicate it.

The number one mistake in all marketing is developing a product first, and then looking for a market to sell it too. Always find your market first.

If I can do it while in prison, you can do it on the outside!

Phrases to steal:

“This is like shooting with a shotgun, instead of a rifle”

“So obvious. So simple. So OVERLOOKED.”

“You can smoke the competition when it comes to open rates”

“Your competitors will consider themselves beyond this.”

“Now my son. Listen, and listen closely.

Books to read:

  • Scientific Advertising - Claude Hopkins

  • The Robert Collier Letters Book - Robert Collier

  • The miracle of fasting - Paul Bragg

  • Are you confused? Paula Airolat

  • The dark side of success