Seven Keys to Better Sales Letters
By: Michael Buechele, Elevation Business Coaching, Inc.
A good sales letter can be the difference in getting a customer to call you or not. You can spend a great deal of money designing a direct marketing campaign, hiring graphic artists to create brochures with impressive pictures, and buying a mailing list. Unfortunately, you will not be in front of the customer as the mail is opened. This is why what’s written (also known as “copy”) must strike something in the customer.
Here Are The Seven Keys to a Better Sales Letter
- Think like the customer.
Imagine getting a sales letter in the mail. You do not know the company this was sent from and it just goes on and on about how great they are. Do you care? Of course not. As the reader of your letter, you want to read about you. Can this company fulfill your needs? Write with the customer in mind.
- Organize the letter.
A good sales letter, needs an introduction, a body and a conclusion. In the introduction you tell why you have sent the letter, the body is your sales pitch, and the conclusion wraps it up by summarizing your points and putting in the “call to action”, like a phone number with a limited time offer. If you are writing a PS section, do not introduce a new subject or a new offer. It will take away from the whole letter.
"Keep it simple stupid!"
*Write in a conversational style, as if the customer is in the room with you and you’re talking about sports.
*Use short sentences. Readers tend to stay away from material with long sentences.
*Compose short paragraphs. People like to have breaks in their reading. It should flow smoothly from one paragraph to the next.
*Edit for content, spelling and grammatical mistakes.
- Grab the reader’s attention.
Use headlines to tell readers something they want to know in a bold way. It should be compelling so customers want to read the rest of the letter.
- Keep the reader interested
Write in an active voice. Every sentence needs to be interesting; a reader can become bored quickly. Add something to the letter like a handwritten note or a picture.
- Make them want what you're selling.
Answer the question, "So what’s in it for me?“ Do not just highlight what you do and the benefits of your product. Think from your customer's perspective. Are you selling soap, or cleanliness and freshness? Is that just another shoe, or is it comfort and style?
- The call to action.
You need to tell your reader what to do to get what you have. Urge them to take immediate action. The longer it takes for them, the less likely they will call. Add words like "Limited Time," "Only 5 Days Left," or "Supplies Are Running low." But don’t lie. If supplies are not running low, then don’t tell them that.
About the Author: Michael Buechele founded Elevation Business Coaching, Inc in 2004. Michael has been involved with coaching since 1990 and has experience in multiple industries including retail, publishing, and technology among others.