How effective copywriting sold my “unsellable” typewriter

Side Hustle

One of the must-have skills on your road to financial independence is selling. Even if you don’t work in a marketing or sales position, we often find ourselves in situations where we have to sell or persuade people to act in our favor, may it be applying for a job, asking for a raise, or asking a girl for her number.

As an engineer, however, I don’t have a lot of experience selling actual stuff. Much more, writing copy for it. I live in a binary world where the solutions that I build or recommend will either work or fail.

Not so with selling, I found out that making some subtle tweaks to the formula can make for entirely different results.

Take, for example, this Sears Newport typewriter of mine which I bought for $5 at a local garage sale when it struck my interest to resell the thing on Facebook Marketplace.

There’s nothing really special about this typewriter other than it’s a typewriter that nobody uses anymore.  It’s somewhat heavy as the case was made partly of metal, but mostly out of cheap plastic.  Besides, something that was made in the 70s won’t even qualify as an antique.

But I went ahead and wrote the original caption as follows.

Vintage 197x Sears Newport typewriter. Made in Portugal. Comes with original case, brand new ribbon, and manuals. Fully functional.

I ran the ad for several days but got no response from any interested buyers. I’ve gotten not a single inquiry, not even a single “like”.

Then it occurred to me that I need something more creative.

Something that is simple yet engaging.

Impress your girlfriend by typing your love notes using this vintage 197x typewriter… Or standout from the rest of the pack by sending a typewritten resume to a prospective employer!



And the response was overwhelming…


Writing an effective copy does make a big difference!



That is awesome, haha… I’ve wanted to type out a blog post and then scan it in here for yearrrrs now. I literally asked my mom to keep her eyes open at yard sales this past weekend so I can get one! 🙂

I love the typewriter especially the original garage sale price. I remember using an old typewriter for assignments or had my mom pay for the service that was before a relative sent us one from Canada.

This makes Marketplace more interesting as a seller. Maybe I can also find a book to splurge on for a low . . . low price or just read the title and learn how to make a good copy to entice people in reading a blog post.

I would love to find out more stuff that you are able to sell online. Congrats with the copy that sells. Keep on writing and selling.

Thanks. I’ve found that computer books are the hardest ones to sell. The easiest ones are children’s clothing, shoes, bikes, etc. Many people won’t buy those new because their kids can easily outgrow them.


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