The Copywriter’s Guide to Coming Up With a TLA

If I’ve learnt anything from interviewing some of Australia’s top online entrepreneurs, it’s that they are experts at coming up with TLAs.


TLAs are Three Letter Acronyms. Yes, I’m being slightly facetious, but I’m serious too. Why? Because in the highly competitive world of writing copy for an internet business, you’ve got to stand out, get cut through and get remembered.

Creating a catchy TLA that sums up your IP, your process, or your viewpoint can be the very thing that lands you a book deal or that game-changing TV interview. And the sooner you can come up with a TLA (three-letter acronym) to describe your process, the sooner you can start charging big money on the speaking circuit.  And it works! People love pithy phrases, catch cries and the like. Here’s just a few I’ve heard from the entrepreneurs I’ve been interviewing.

1. The ABC of Data: 

Kate Morris, from, a very cool online beauty store, said:

“We have to remember the ABCs of internet marketing – Always Be Collecting. The secret of success for any online business is a really good list, and the only way to build that list is to Always Be Collecting.”

2. Another TLA: PAG

Jane Huxley, Managing Director of Pandora Internet Radio said that when they collect data, they always focus on PAG – postcode, address (email) and Gender. In America, where Pandora’s head office is based, their data collection process is so sophisticated, and they have so many people on file that they can actually predict how their customers will vote in a political election!

3.  The 3 Cs:

Mark Middo, founder of Social Empire and author of the 5-Minute Business, created his own TLA with his 3 Cs:  Castle, Content, and Communication.  This is a good one for internet marketers as it gives a structure to the process of setting up online businesses quickly.

  1. Castle = set up your website.
  2. Content = write great stuff for the site and create loads of other content
  3. Communication = get those aforementioned pieces of copywriting (blogs, webinars, reports, eBooks) out into the world

How? Send them out to forums, LinkedIn, blogging sites, and aggregator sites and start commenting on things you’ve read, seen or heard.  Get active.

If you want more tips on how to become a successful online entrepreneur, watch our interviews with some of Australia’s internet superstars here:

  • Episode 1:  Secrets of Aussie Online Entrepreneurs:  The Young Guns

About This Episode:

Discover how three of Australia’s top ‘Young Gun’ internet superstars built their businesses and turned fledgling ideas into multi-million dollar online juggernauts.  Features interviews with Ruslan Kogan, Dean Ramler from Milan Direct and Jack Delosa, founder of The Entourage.

  • Episode 2:  Social Media Mavericks

About This Episode:

Tap into the genius behind Australia’s top Social Media futurists and discover the new rules of engagement for business executives. Guests include the world’s most provocative futurist, Brian Solis, on ‘connected consumerism’; Peter Williams, CEO of Deloitte Digital, on why leaders must either get linked or become extinct; and market researcher Mark McCrindle on the top social media trends coming our way.