Almost nobody does enough homework before they write a word of ad copy, make a marketing plan, or start selling. And that’s the main reason why most ad copy and marketing tactics are anemic, weak and ineffective. Frankly, about 80% of the ad copy I see is: full of puffery instead of power; loaded with generalities instead of specifics; full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. Here’s what I mean by “doing your homework”. Before I write a word of copy for a client, I have them fill out a 25-question Client Questionnaire. In its original form, it runs to 5 pages! Below is a list of those 25 questions you can also use to get your thinking focused. Feel free to print out these questions in your own form, and use it for your own projects. Make sure you do the research necessary to get the answers to these questions before you write the copy.

About the author
Russ Phelps is a master copy writer and marketing consultant, with more than 600 clients nationwide since 1978 - including fortune 500 companies and many smaller businesses and entrepreneurs. He has created thousands of marketing campaigns for direct mail, print, publicity, internet, TV, radio, back-end marketing and ancillary marketing.  
Contact him at or call (858)831-1668. 

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