This week’s blurb breakdown is Brittany Spears, The Woman in Me.
At the time of writing it was 9th in Amazon US Books, and number one in Rich & Famous Biographies.
Here’s the blurb…
“In Britney Spears’s memoir, she’s stronger than ever.” —The New York Times
The Woman in Me is a brave and astonishingly moving story about freedom, fame, motherhood, survival, faith, and hope.
What I like about this opening hook is that it doesn’t waste time introducing who Britney is. There’s no backstory to her rise to fame. We all know her who she is—and thrown a few shapes on the dance floor to her songs. The publisher’s know that we know who she is.
This is a great example of Eugene Schwartz’s five levels of market awareness, and knowing where the audience is at. It starts with that and the blurb carries on from there.
The quote form the NYT adds social proof and brings with it a degree of status. You also have to look at the choice of words. I’m betting ‘Britney Spear’s memoir’ is a good Amazon SEO keyword phrase. Pair that with the sense of empowerment you get form the latter part of the quote and you’ve got yourself a solid opener.
Side note: This book description works because of the level of Britney’s fame. If you’re writing a memoir and one knows who you are, you’re going to have to take a slightly different approach. You’ve going to have to add some elements of your backstory or credentials to give people context and reason to care.
In June 2021, the whole world was listening as Britney Spears spoke in open court.
This first sentence gives us context. The date helps to jog our memory and tells us—very succinctly—where we are in Britney’s journey. ‘The whole world was listening’ adds further social proof and there’s a subtle open loop at the end…What did she say in court, and what didn’t she say?
Ok, next sentence:
The impact of sharing her voice—her truth—was undeniable, and it changed the course of her life and the lives of countless others.
This taps into our curiosity, we’re suckers for wanting learn the secrets, or get insider info, so using the phrase —her truth—is a red hot curiosity button.
The Woman in Me reveals for the first time her incredible journey—and the strength at the core of one of the greatest performers in pop music history.
They repeat the book’s title here. I’ve seen this technique used multiple times and it does two things: first, and I have no evidence to support this, so take it with a pinch of salt, it might be part of a keyword strategy to maximise organic reach.
Second, and the mostly likely reason, the repetition helps with memorability.
Side Note: It’s also a clever title. They know that the target market for Britney’s book is largely going to be women, and it speaks directly to our identity.
Written with remarkable candor and humor, Spears’s groundbreaking book illuminates the enduring power of music and love—and the importance of a woman telling her own story, on her own terms, at last.
This sentence, although long, starts with a summary of the reading experience. It sets the scene for the style. Then we have the trigger words ‘groundbreaking’, and ‘illuminating’ to create open loops and curiosity. And the final part of the sentence makes you feel empowered.
The ‘at last’ is my favourite part. It’s loaded with the weight of her past. It’s hopeful. And it’s a powerful way to end.
Often, trad publisher’s use what I call a social proof sandwich, i.e. they start and end the book descriptions with review quotes. At first glance, to improve this book description I might have suggested adding more social proof. However…
That final ‘at last’ lingers in your brain. That’s stronger than any social proof or soft CTA you can ever come up with.
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