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Last week, LEAP subscriber Maria Berg sent an email to her list, and it blew me away.

It actually choked me up a bit, and that’s not an easy thing to achieve.

What with me being such a rugged manly man and all…

Seriously though, you want to learn how she did it, because she did a bunch of things right.

This email is a bit long, but it’s worth a close read because you’ll learn a lot.

Below is her email verbatim, with permission.

At the end, I’ll give you a quick analysis of exactly why this is a good email, so you can use the same principles for yourself.

Keep in mind the target audience: for you personally it might be too emotionally charged, too soft, but for her audience it’s perfect.

Take it away, Maria:


It’s late in the evening when the phone rings.

“I don’t know how to thank you…”, I hear her say.

>From the tone in her voice, I can tell she’s very excited.

It’s contagious: my heart is beating in my throat.

“I’m listening”, I tell her.

Wishing I could see her eyes – they always contained the whole range of her emotions.

“I guess my mother was expecting a gift, you know, the usual flowers and a little piece of jewellery, like every year.

But when I handed her the big package, I saw her eyes getting wider, full of surprise.

‘What’s this?’, she asked, not knowing what to expect.

‘Just open it, Mom!’ I said, with my heart pounding in my chest.

I could barely contain myself.

‘Oh!’ she exclaimed, staring at the painting she now held in her hands.Maria Berg

The smile disappeared from her lips and for a moment, which seemed like an eternity to me, I didn’t know what to make of her reaction.

‘My baby…’ she whispered and pressed the painting against her chest.

Tears were rolling down her cheeks.

I wasn’t alarmed anymore, because she was smiling again and it was one of the most beautiful smiles I ever saw on my mother’s face.”

“Maria, I already knew that my mother would love the portrait you made.

I was already thrilled to have such a beautiful gift to give her.

But what you have created was more than a painting.

It was more than just a gift.

It was some kind of magic.

You created something that couldn’t have happened otherwise…

You created a unique experience for my mother and me – something that I know both of us will hold in our hearts forever.”

I don’t have to tell you how happy I was to hear those words.

I felt blessed and fulfilled.

And so grateful for the fact that my work had made this difference in her life and that of her mother.

I would be more than happy to create the same kind of experience for your mother and you.

Starting today until next Tuesday, you have the opportunity to commission a piece of art as a gift for your mother, on Mother’s Day.

Do please consider that I can only create a limited amount of paintings in a given period of time.

So if you feel inspired by the idea, please contact me as soon as possible – there’s only enough time to create 4 of these.

All I need – aside from a very affordable 450 Euro and your street address – is a few of your childhood photos, and about a week’s time.

After that, you’ll have a framed, 24 x 32 cm (9,4 x 12,6) mother’s day gift that’s unique and precious, delivered to your doorstep by express mail.

Click reply and I’ll let you know the details.

Wishing you to feel especially blessed and loved today.




How do you like them apples?

Here’s why this email is the dog’s bollocks, as they so charmingly say in England.

1: She gets right in there with a story, no dilly-dallying. She could have made that even stronger by omitting the ‘it’s late when the phone rings’ line – it’s good for context, but not essential.

2: Right from the start, there’s curiosity, as well as suspense. Why is the caller excited? How come it has the same effect on Maria?

3: ‘Wishing I could see her eyes’ – not an essential statement, but a strong emotional and very personal message.

4: The meat of the thing: In just a few words, with good storytelling, she relates what happened. In that section, a range of emotions that logically follow each other and take the reader along in the experience: nervously handing over the package, the mother’s curiosity, a moment of vacillation – why is the smile gone?

And then: Bam, an emotion we can all relate to, the sudden and dramatic reliving of how things used to be. “My baby…”

Add a few tears, and the whole theatre reaches for their hankies.

Hollywood couldn’t have done a better job.

5: An explanation of the deeper event behind just a painting as a gift – the real value and experience that art can deliver.

And, a customer testimonial that in no uncertain terms shows the reader why Maria’s art is so captivating.

6: Maria’s own gratitude – always good to put something of yourself in your communications.

7: Straight for the jugular: ‘Now you’ve seen what a painting can do, how about the same for yourself?’

8: Limited time offer and limited availability – not engineered and fake the way you see marketers often do, but real and genuine: after all, mother’s day is fast approaching.

9: The way it works, what the buyer gets, and of course the price. No pussyfooting around, but a straight question: ‘These are the terms, do you want this?’

10: A simple but strong call to action.

Disclaimer: I myself tweaked a few of the sentences for her, but very very minimally. She had it 98% right when I first saw the draft. All I did was polish it up a bit.

The nice thing about this is that she closely follows the Listen-Explain-Ask-Profit strategy that LEAP is built upon.

And, I’m very curious to see how sales turn out for her.

So there you go, a simple but effective way to engage an audience, give them a reason to want to buy your art, and a way to offer them something special.

You can use the same system for yourself – whether in an email or on a salespage.

In fact, Maria told me you have permission to copy the email word for word, but I don’t recommend it:

Since this first appeared on Maria’s site, re-posting it to your own could hurt your SEO ranking.

Besides, it’s better if you turn it into your own story, infuse your own personality in it.

That way it’ll ring more true with your audience, and that’s far more likely to get you sales.

So how did Maria become so smart?

She signed up for LEAP a few months ago –>



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