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Advertising Secrets of the Written Word: The Ultimate Resource on How to Write Powerful Advertising Copy from One of America's Top Copywriters and Mail Order Entrepreneurs Hardcover – June 1, 1998

4.8 out of 5 stars 56 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


Every trade has its role models. And for me, there is no better model for ad copywriters or maazine editors... -- Ray Schultz, Editor, DIRECT Magazine

I have been a fan of Joseph Sugarman's copywriting and marketing ideas for years and have benefited greatly... -- Jack Canfield, Co-author, Chicken Soup for the Soul

There are a lot of great copywriters, but Joe Sugarman is the best. He knows how to build a story... -- Richard Thalheimer, President, The Sharper Image

About the Author

Joseph Sugarman has been highly recognized for his effective advertising copy and the innovations he's brought to the direct marketing field. He won many awards to include Direct Marketing Man of the Year and the distinguished Maxwell Sackheim Award for his career contributions to direct marketing. He's become a role model for many in sales, marketing and direct marketing. He has authored five books and has successful run several business--all created from the power of his pen.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 312 pages
  • Publisher: Delstar Pub (June 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1891686003
  • ISBN-13: 978-1891686009
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 7.5 x 10.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #154,376 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By K. A. Mayer on August 3, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I am not a copy writer and I had NO idea how to write ads. I have a couple books on copywriting, but frankly, they were boring. I'd flipped through them trying to find some magical text that would teach me what I wanted to know without wasting my valuable time. Then I found this page and read these reader reviews. I decided to give the book a try.
The writing style is so engaging, I'm finding myself reading every word -- and I tend to be a "skimmer." Mr. Sugarman has such an easy style, it's almost as if he's sitting in front of you, telling you how to write advertising.
What worried me most about spending my hard-earned money on a hard-back book like this was that it would assume too much about me as a copy writer and I would be lost. Not at all! The author explains stuff so extraordinarily well that I couldn't wait to get started using the techniques.
My second concern was that he would be too general. Other marketing courses and articles I'd looked at said stuff like "list the benefit." Well, duh! What they didn't tell me was how I should WORD it such that my readers won't get bored before I can finish telling them about it. Mr. Sugarman does a superb job of explaining why this wording didn't work and why this one did. He walks you through how to discover a talent inside you that you never even knew you had!
The book seems to be geared mostly toward mail order (I'm not done reading it though), but I'm finding that I can apply the same principles and lessons to my web site. Of course, it's easier to change a web site when you find that what you're doing isn't working :o), so I'll be looking forward to trying out new approaches...
In summary, if you're looking for a book that will explain in a captivating way, using tons of examples (he even uses his techniques in the text of the book, which is lots of fun to see), get this one! You will not be sorry!
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Format: Hardcover
Srikumar S. Rao is Louis and Johanna Vorzimer Professor of Marketing at the C. W. Post campus of New York's Long island University.
This book is actually the first volume of a trilogy. The other two are:Marketing Secrets of a Mail Order Maverick and Television Secrets for Marketing Success. The set is one of the best expositions of marketing I have come across and I cannot recommend them more highly.
Joe Sugarman may not have invented the format of full page advertisements in leading publications - such as the Wall Street Journal - packed with dense copy, but he was/is one of its best exponents. In the seventies he made his reputation and fortune by being the first to promote the electronic calculator and other leading edge technology gizmos. His company, JS&A, was synonymous with hugely entertaining and informative advertisements.
These volumes are part biography, part hard learned marketing lessons and part personal philosophy. Sugarman lets it all hang out with unmistakable sincerity. What distinguished his advertisements two decades ago is that he would tell you what the flaws of the product he was selling were. The same honesty is present in this set of books.
The appendices of each volume contain dozens of actual advertisements Sugarman produced and ran. He does not exclusively display his successes, of which he has had his fair share. He shows you good ads that bombed and speculates on why. He tell you why some campaigns worked, why some were runaway successes and why others stalled. It is rare to find this degree of candor from such an established marketer.
Even better, Sugarman tells you many "tricks of the trade" that might well save you hundreds of thousands of dollars.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Great copy looks so easy -- so simple, so effortless, so "ordinary." There are those who can take the process of writing it and make that process look complicated. And then there's Joe Sugarman.
This is one of the two books I recommend for further study in my home-study "Money-Making Copywriting Course." Why? Because Joe cuts through all of the needless and cumbersome detail so many teachers of copywriting instill in their lessons. He makes the information accessible and entertaining to learn. And he's a super-successful real-world practioner, as well as a very skilled and effective teacher.
A novice might think that because this book does not refer to Internet marketing or the latest trends in print and direct mail advertising, it is out of date. That is a well-intentioned but misguided criticism. Of course very few people know how to market effectively (and close sales) on the Internet. Since I have done this successfully (I've created Web sites that made lots of money, by themselves) and since I spent a year as the editor of a newsletter tracking who was successful marketing online and who wasn't (almost everyone wasn't), I can say with some authority that there are very few people who can market effectively online.
But know this about Joe Sugarman. If he ever chose to do online marketing, he would make a fortune -- just as he has done before in other ventures. Why? Because there are certain principles of human nature, and of selling with the written word, that have not yet changed. And he is a world-class expert in conveying those principles to novices and experts alike.
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