The Summit has a new name, new site, and new opportunities!

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We’re making some big changes to the Summit.

Starting with a new name & website – The Financial Marketing Summit 

We’re creating new networking opportunities, expanding the marketing resources we bring you, and working hard to make the event even more valuable to you and your business.

So check out the new website, register for the event, and keep an eye out for some major announcements.

And if you need anything – introductions, information, recommendations, or whatever – connect with me on LinkedIn and I’ll do what I can to help.

John Newtson

The Most Interesting Copywriter in Chicago

Donnie Bryant, Financial Copywriter

Donnie Bryant, Financial Copywriter

Donnie Bryant has been given the unofficial title, “The Most Interesting Copywriter in Chicago.” Of course, in the direct response world, being “interesting” is irrelevant, but it makes for good conversation. Since 2007,

Donnie has written sales copy for dozens of niches, from dating advice to debt relief. Although he tried to resist, he finally surrendered to the siren call of the financial industry in 2014. He has written winning sales copy in multiple formats for clients such as Agora, Zacks Investment Research, Birch Gold Group, Goldco, Early to Rise and GKIC. He’s also written copy for financial services like annuities, life insurance and accounting firms. (Please don’t hold that against him.)

Donnie has published 3 books, contributed to numerous blogs and newsletters (the most germane of which is John Forde’s Copywriter’s Roundtable) and spoken on stage with the likes of Clayton Makepeace, David Deutsch and Parris Lampropolous. Donnie lives in the suburbs of Chicago with his wife Adina and their 4 children. Find out more about Donnie at Samples are available upon request.

Bob has some of the easiest traffic to convert to trading offers (add him to your short list of traffic sources)

Bob Fladung from is someone you need to know.

He should be on your short list of potential sources of traffic if you sell trading products.

As a general rule of thumb, if you’re sending traffic to a trading or investing offer and you CAN’T make’s traffic convert, then you probably have a conversion problem in general.

I’ve run campaigns with clients in the past to INO that have generated some of the highest returns-on-investment that I can remember.

Over the years I’ve found media sellers have great insights into what is working out in the marketplace because they see hundreds of sales funnels, offers, and promotional ideas. And they know what’s working and what’s not.

That’s why I always like to pick their brains.

It makes me a smarter, more effective marketer.

So I had a long conversation with Bob about…

  • What types of traffic he has available.
  • What OFFERS he sees working best right now (Summer of 2016)
  • How to get the highest conversions when advertising to his traffic.
  • What kinds of volume you can expect
  • How he prices advertising .. and WHY (This is useful info to know).
  • Plus, we talk about how they’ve managed to maintain the quality of their traffic over such a long period ( a rare feat in our space)

And a lot more.

I’ve mentioned before that I believe every financial marketer should have a short list of “go-to” traffic sources.

That way you know where to test new offers, where you can roll out quickly when you have a winner, and basically turn your media buying into a more stable business process.

And Ino is on my personal short-list of places to test and roll out trading offers.

I highly recommend you take a few minutes to connect with Bob. Talk to him about your offers and what you have going on.

If you haven’t ever chatted with Bob then I encourage you to Click here to get’s media kit and connect with Bob


How to buy & scale financial traffic with Mike MacDougall from The Darwin List Network


All year I’ve been hearing through back channels that Mike MacDougall’s Darwin List Network has been delivering some of the highest returns on investment for marketers in our industry.

What’s nice about that is his list network is big. Very big.

I just had a long video chat with Mike as part of a series I’m doing with the people who have the traffic in financial.

I have two goals with this series:

  1. To introduce you to all the different people in the investor & trader media universe who you can go to grow your business.I’ll be introducing you to some sources you already know and several new or smaller email lists and sources you maybe never heard of – but would love to test.
  2. To have in-depth conversations about how to make each of these traffic sources work for you. And help you be a smarter media buyer by giving you more detailed information.

What’s great about Mike is that he comes from the marketer/publisher side of the business. He ran an agency that handled product launches, acquisition campaigns, and built sales funnels for financial publishers.

And that evolved in his media business. So he has a lot of practical, tactical, and strategic insight into how to actually make your advertising pay out for you.

In our conversation Mike and I discussed:

  • What general offers work best to his traffic.
  • How to scale up a successful campaign. He can deliver 15,000 to 20,000 leads a month to his largest clients – but you have to be able to
  • Mike details how to scale up a successful campaign.
  • How he helps new advertisers avoid losing money before they buy any ad.
  • He also outlines one of the most successful sales funnel formats he’s seeing work right now.
  • How to think through what metrics matter for your individual campaign.

And a lot more.

I’d love to here any questions or comments you have for Mike.

Hope this helps,
John Newtson

Financial Traffic Series: Where to get high quality (and highly qualified) $3 leads in financial today

If you’ve been around the industry for awhile now then you know Tim Bourquin, from AfterOffers, is one of the go-to traffic sources in our industry if you are looking for high quality and highly qualified investor and trader leads.

What you might not know is that Tim started the Traders Expo with a classified add in a local newspaper. His initial response? Four guys showed up for a breakfast meeting.

He grew that until he was hosting 600 traders in a ball room TWICE A MONTH.

Eventually he sold that business to the Money Show but that experience also introduced him to the business of financial lead generation.

Now Tim runs a great business delivering investor and trader leads to publishers. (He also generates leads in other niches like internet marketing, travel & leisure, and others.

I wanted to interview Tim for a few reasons.

First & foremost because if you’re buying investor & trading traffic then he is someone you should know.

Tim gives you LEADS – not impressions, not email opens, but actual leads. People who saw your offer and manually selected to subscribe to your emails.

And he does it for about $3 a lead – which is one of the great deals available today.

He’ll even give you 100 leads for free so you can see how qualified they are.

Second, I wanted to introduce you to Tim because he is one of those guys who is always generous with his time and his expertise. He’s good people and worth knowing if you’re working in our industry.

He offered a lot of invaluable insights and advice to Jami & I when we launched the Summit based on his years of experience building and running the Traders’ Expo.

Third, this is part of a series of conversations I’m having with the highest quality advertising sources in our industry.

I believe we’re past the age of simply putting out “how to” information. The internet is full of how-to market, how-to sell, how-to do just about anything.

What matters now is connection.

It’s who you know.

And I want to make sure you know everyone who could potentially help you build your business.

So if you’re looking for traffic opportunities then go check out 


Mike Capetanakis, DM Guru

Mike is direct marketing expert & copywriter who has managed as much as $50 million marketing budgets.

Mike is direct marketing expert & copywriter who has managed as much as $50 million marketing budgets.

Mike Capetanakis is the principal of MCDM Strategic Direct Marketing which designs, implements, and facilitates direct response projects. He specializes in producing leads from Online and Offline media channels using his experience, copy & creative design expertise. His Email Drip copy has proven to increase customer retention by 25-50%.

At Net Marketing Alliance/Trump Institute, whom he joined after selling his company- Success Publishing Group; publishers of Compton’s Encyclopedia. He managed their $50 million marketing budget to produce 800,000 affluent leads for the Donald Trump, David Bach & Duchess of York/ Sarah Ferguson financial education seminar brands. He was responsible for producing leads from all Multi-Media channels: mailing 100 million pieces/year, buying DRTV/radio time, Space ads, creating their Email promotions and Websites. The results of his lead acquisition program and strategic development of the Women’s Financial Conference increased sales by150% from $80 million to over $200 million.

He moved to Chicago and joined Encyclopaedia Britannica to manage their Mail Order profit center as their youngest Vice President. He created many new club and loyalty marketing programs, including the Sesame Street catalog, which produced millions in sales with high profit margins while reducing fulfillment costs. Subsequently as the Compton’s brand was sold to The Tribune Company/The Learning Company, he moved with the Compton’s brand which led to his buying the company brand. As President of Success Publishing Group, he published Compton’s for several years before he sold the company back to EB.

He began his direct marketing career over 30 years ago with Columbia House Record Club, a division of CBS. For the next several years, his career expanded at Grolier Enterprises culminating in his being appointed their youngest Executive Vice President and Officer. He was responsible for developing and implementing group sales of tens of millions of dollars with significant profit contributions from club, continuity & loyalty programs. At Grolier, he worked with many licensors including Disney, Dr. Seuss/Random House, Charles Schulz, Jacques Cousteau, Price, Stern and Sloan and others.

Mr. Capetanakis has been a DMA Echo Award judge for many years, a past speaker at DMA conventions and was a past member of the board of directors for the Advertising Mail Marketing Association. He holds an MBA and a BS from Long Island University.

Client Roster (Financial & Other)

  • Adam & Eve- a publishing firm
  • Barchart/Commodity Research Bureau– oldest publisher of charts/trends in commodity market
  • The Casey Report– Leading newsletter publisher on Natural Resources including gold & oil
  • Chelsea House/Main Line Book Co. – children’s/young adult trade and library publisher
  • Cole Group- publisher of Ortho cookbooks, California Culinary Academy and 101 Productions Imprints
  • The College Network- Offers Online educational college tests for transfer credit for AS & BS degrees
  • David Lindahl/ Riches in Real Estate– teaches people how to invest in Real Estate
  • eVoice, a division of J2- BTB firm selling phone systems to new business owners
  • Hill Group- a leading DM agency; worked on the Blockbuster Video account
  • Ken Roberts– launched his “un-retirement” with Ultimate Technique for Success Club
  • Larry Levin/Trading Advantage– leading investment education firm for traders
  • National Grants Conferences– trained consumers to receive grant money from the government
  • Media Syndication Group- sold consumer products via bank and oil credit card statements
  • MIT/NMA– one of the largest financial seminar firms- mailed over 100 million pieces/year, partnership with Investools
  • MYTXTBOOKS.COM, Inc.- Start-up firm and marketer of college eBooks
  • The Options Insider Radio Network- #1 podcast on iTunes, developed new business- 300K downloads/month
  • Larry Pino/Optionetics/MyMediaWorks– teaches people how to invest in Options
  • Penguin USA- a major US publisher
  • Publication International Ltd. – the largest publisher of cookbooks in US
  • Strategic Data Intelligence- a new leading BTB data marketing group (formed by owners of Direct Tech)
  • The Trump Institute– a Donald Trump educational company featuring live training for investors
  • Wilton Gallery- a collectible firm offering US stamps to retailers and consumers
  • Women’s Financial Conference– the Duchess of York/ Sarah Ferguson offered financial education to women
  • World Impressions, Inc. – a marketer of Sportmaps to retailers

You can find out more about Mike at his company site,

Get this Webinar Recording on New Video Conversion Boosters

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Just wanted to let you know that this Thursday March 24th, at 2 PM East (10 AM PST), I’m hosting a webinar with Ray Karpuska.
Ray’s a top video conversion expert who has boosted conversions for top internet marketers like Russell Brunson, Kelly Fix (“The Rich Jerk”), Mike Koenigs and others.
And he’s also boosted conversions for some of the classic direct response marketers like Jay Abraham and Jordan (the real “Wolf of Wall Street”).
Ray is doing a lot of really cool stuff. Stuff you can use in your business to boost conversions and sales.
He’s got a string of testimonials a mile long from top marketers.
See you on the webinar,

Sandy Fox writes all the short copy you need to support your long form sales promotions

Sandy Fox creates short copy collateral for financial newsletter promotions.

Sandy Fox creates short copy collateral for financial newsletter promotions.

Sandy Fox specializes in the short copy surrounding long sales letters especially financial newsletter promotions. This includes: emails, opt-in, order pages, thank you, welcome, retention and renewal pages. 

When publishers change the offer, freshen the lead and headline, or do A/B tests, they need fresh ancillary copy each time. Sandy is skilled at matching the tone and voice of the original promo while adding energy and persuasive techniques.

She also works in the alternative investing and money management opportunities. These include rental real estate, mortgage notes, whole life insurance, info-marketing and technology start-up’s.

She has been trained by Clayton Makepeace (financial copywriting), Jeff Walker (Product Launch Formula), Ryan Diess (Digital Marketer), AWAI, Chris Marlow, and Dan Kennedy (info-marketing). And she uses their methods to create compelling copy.

She’s written for Newsmax, Street Authority, Motley Fool UK, Academic Tech Ventures and others. Her recent book, Growing Customer Lifetime Value: Retention & Renewal, shows how to use short copy to strengthen the bottom line.  You can view her portfolio at

Ryan Niessen, full-service copywriting & funnel provider

Ryan Niessen, full-service copywriting & funnel provider

Ryan Niessen, full-service copywriting & funnel provider

Hi, I’m Ryan Niessen.

If you’re looking for an “A-Level” copywriter, that’s not me. I haven’t written million dollar campaigns, trained in person with the greats, or taught copywriting.

Frankly, I’m honored to be listed on the same page as the other legends of direct response here.

Why am I here? 2 reasons:

Reason #1: I have unique value proposition that attracts a different type of client than the other brilliant copywriters here.

  • I develop strategy.
  • I write copy including emails, landing pages, sales pages, VSL’s, launch videos, webinars, and more.
  • Plus, I implement – meaning I’ll build your funnel and actually execute your campaigns.

In other words, I’m a full service copywriting + funnel provider.

Reason #2: Almost three of my 4+ years in this space were spent as the marketing manager for a financial education company called The Elevation Group (EVG), which generated more than $30M and taught more than 50,000 members since 2010.

I learned from and worked with some of the best, which makes me uniquely qualified to serve you in a full-service capacity

Since leaving EVG, I’ve executed two 6-figure campaigns for small business owners who hadn’t previously reached that mark online.

I created a funnel and campaign that generated a 3924% ROI on only $822 in ad spend.

Plus, I’ve been trusted to quarterback an upcoming digital product launch for Fanpage Traffic Academy (a Facebook agency that works with people like Brendon Burchard, Russell Brunson, and Chalene Johnson.)

To discover how we can work together, message me on my LinkedIn profile here.

Full-Service Funnel Samples:

From $0 to $40 million in 18-months

How to scale fast

On August 7th, 2014 two guys working for someone else decided they wanted to go out on their own and launch their own website and business in the investment industry.

They approached Jeremy Blossom, of StrikePoint Media, a full service customer acquisition marketing agency dedicated to the trading & investing industry, with their idea.

After two months of preparation Jeremy launched his new acquisition strategy.
16 months later the brand new business had generated nearly $40 million in gross revenue – and are well on their way to breaking $100 million in 2016.

How’d they do it?

You’ll find out in 3-weeks at theInvesting Info-Marketing Summit because Jeremy has agreed to come do a case study on exactly how they did it.

He is going to show you exactly how he and his team scaled a company from scratch and made it the fastest growing company in its niche in a matter of months.

Including how they built the funnels, developed the lead generation offers, planned their media and more.

This is a rare opportunity to get an inside look into the full marketing strategy behind one of the biggest success stories in financial in the last two years. Go here if you’re not registered

John Newtson