3 Must-Have Copywriting Formulas to Tell a Irresistible Story that SELLS


Storytelling Copywriting Formulas that SELL:

  1. Before-After-Bridge
  2. Star-Story-Solution
  3. Future Pacing

People are more likely to buy if they can picture what their life would be like after your offer.

People aren’t interested in you. They’re interested in themselves.

We know! It’s a tough pill to swallow.

But think of it like this…

  • Warby Parker lets you see how’d you look in your new frames with their virtual try-on feature.
  • Apple fills their stores with products and encourages you to play around as long as you want.
  • Ikea spends big $$$ staging elaborate room displays to give you that *in-home feel* when you visit their stores.

Why do they do this??

Because if you can experience what life is like with those frames, that iPhone, or that couch (that you probably have no idea how to pronounce), then you’re more likely to buy it!

(Anyone else visit IKEA and leave thinking they need 13 mason jars and that poster of animals wearing sweaters??)


… help people invision their life, that is… not have animals wearing sweaters.

As a business owner, you need to paint a picture. If readers can can visualize using your project or having their problems solved, then your offer will be irresistible.

But how do you do this? You sell your offers with storytelling! Because people don’t buy things. They buy feelings!

Ok, here’s what I mean…

I just recently bought a new pair of shoes. Sneakers, actually. And this was loooong overdue. Because I’m picky! But only about my workout shoes.

I need good arch support. I want something lightweight  And they have to look good!! (I’m also realizing how ridiculous I am). 

But in the end, I didn’t just buy supportive shoes. I bought comfort. I bought motivation. I bought confidence. 

And you do this, too. So when you sell, focus on the feelings your clients or customers are seeking. Not your offers. And remember… the best way to make people imagine and feel? Tell a story. 

Let’s dive into 3 of my favorite copywriting hacks to help you really paint that picture when you sell your offers. 

Starting with a classic… 


  1. Before – Here’s your world …
  2. After – Imagine what it’d be like having your problem solved …
  3. Bridge – Here’s how to get there.

This is one of my absolute faaav techniques to use for website copy and design (yes, we do both!). Because it doesn’t have to be fancy – just a simple 1-2-3 format that helps readers picture themselves in the journey. 

Now let’s look at it in action (because I never give tips without sharing my own examples). Otherwise, you could just use Google for all this info.  

BEFORE: You deserve to spend this time enjoying your engagement, not searching for the perfect vendor or stressing over budgets.

AFTER: Go ahead and pop the champagne and let us take over. With us, you get a wedding planning experience full of trust, peace, and most importantly, FUN!

BRIDGE: Schedule a hassle-free call with us to talk details. Once we get your date on the books, you can be one step closer to barefoot dancing on the reception floor.

If you start really looking, you can likely find this tried-and-true formula on almost any website (well, any website with good copy).

Here’s a peek at the OG queen of copywriting, Marie Forleo’s website. She uses the BAB formula all throughout her landing page. In this snippet below, you can see how simple it is to move from before to after. Where’s the bridge? She includes a bright, shiny CTA below this section to take readers right to her course sign-up page.

This formula is in every successful copywriter’s toolkit because IT WORKS. And speaking of tried and true… 


  1. Star – The main character of your story (Can be anything – yourself, an offer, a client…)
  2. Story – The story (Make it relatable. Bring in all the emotions.)
  3. Solution – How the star wins in the end (& why the reader MUST buy-in)

This formula is another time-tested classic because it gives your readers a clear example to resonate with. They should be able to recognize themselves in the star, and by the end, know they can do it too if they just buy whatever you’re offering.

Here’s a step-by-step look at how this storytelling copy formula might look for a service-based business:

(INTRODUCTION) I know these techniques work because I’ve lived on the other side. I was the girl who was “too busy” to take control of her health. Running myself ragged between a 9-5, a family to take care of, and an embarrassing amount of Mountain Dew just to try to keep up. (yikes, I know!!).

(STORY) I said no to every adventure, every girls’ trip… I even wanted to cancel a family vacation out of fear of being seen. By 30, I had been diagnosed with too many autoimmune diseases to list. I was struggling mentally and didn’t have the tools I needed to heal my body and mind. Until… I found a 360-approach to restoring gut health. And one that’s not too damn complicated (or expensive) to keep up with. 

(SOLUTION) Once I started implementing the protocol into my daily life, I was able to:

✴ Heal my IBS symptoms

✴ Eradicate chronics migraines

✴ Clear my acne and skin issues

✴ Calm my nervous system

✴ And feel better than I EVER did in my 20s.

And now… I want to help you do it, too!

Now let’s jump into an example on Alex Cattoni’s (the Beyonce of copywriting) website. Alex’s course site is filled with testimonials. And because her course is for copywriters, these testimonials don’t just praise the course… they SELL. In this testimonial, we’re introduced to the star, a copywriting student. Then we’re given the story – barely scraping by to *digital nomad bliss* thanks to The Copy Posse. The solution? A quick CTA button to guide readers to more info.

The SSS formula doesn’t have to be complicated. You can use stories from your life to show how much better you are now that you have [your amazing offer]. Or include an offboarding questionnaire (in your totally seamless client experience… we’ll get to this another day). Give your clients prompts to guide them to leave feedback like Dayana’s above. Just make sure the star of your story is victorious in the end but also relatable. 

And finally… 



More of a technique than a formula, this storytelling trick is famously used in Neuro-Linguistic Programming, and practiced by some of the world’s most notable speakers (think Oprah).

And the reason it works isn’t as complicated as you’d think when you see tip number 3 is a pseudoscientific approach to communication. 

The secret is that our brains simply can’t tell the difference between positive memories and positive future desires. So when you tell the brain it’s already happened, you get the feel-good emotions that come with it.

And emotions = good, convincing copy. 

The trick is to only use present tense when you tell your story. 

You wake up each morning, well rested and filled with gratitude. You flip through your planner with peace, knowing exactly what needs to get done (and when it needs to be done). You manage your energy well, finding time for rest and time for your true priorities. 

Reading that totally made me want to all my sh*t together. 

For Future Pacing, hone in on that one benefit your readers are looking for. And once you know what it is, weave this trick into your copy so readers are frequently reminded of what life can be like AFTER you helped them overcome their problems.

And that’s it! Those are the three techniques you can use to craft up some irresistible storytelling copywriters have been using to create irresistible stories for readers. I hope this sparks some creativity! 

If you found this helpful, let me know!! I love, love, love when our people reply to an email, comment on a blog, or slide in our DMs just to tell us if something was useful.  

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Do less, but better

Ditch the diy copy &

More time for spontaneous vacations and bingeing an entire season of Gilmore Girls in one night. Less time for hitting the backspace key and reading the same sentence 7 times (only to end up deleting it anyway).