How To Build A Compelling Sales Letter In Under 2 Hours
Jun 02 2020
11 min read
11 min read
Table of Contents
- What You'll Learn In This Post:
- 5 Quick Hacks For Better Writing…
- #1: Short, Sharp Sentences.
- #2: Write In Plain English
- #3: You’re Only Ever Talking To One Person
- #4: Use Power Words
- #5: Long Copy Sells Better (But It Has To Be Interesting)
- Part 1: Draw The Readers Attentions
- Step One: Make It Stand Out
- Step Two: Create A Mystery Box
- Alex Jeffrey’s Does This Perfectly…
- Building Your Letter: The Headline
- Part 2: Keep Your Readers Attention
- Letter Writing
- Choose Your Method…
- Building Your Letter: Keeping Attention
- Part 3: The One Rule You Know (But Always Forget)
- Social Proof
- Building Your Letter: Backing Up Your Claims
- Part 4: Drive The Point Home
- Drive It Home With Endless Benefits
- Building Your Letter: Make People Want It
- Part 5: The Call To Action
- The Guarantee
- Make It Limited Edition
- Building Your Letter: Call To Action
You put your heart and soul into your products, don’t you?
You make them absolutely perfect. Down to the finest, smallest little detail.
There is no part of that product you don’t know everything about.
Everyone you’ve shown it to loves it. And in your head it’s already sold in the thousands.
Then comes the fateful day where you have to type your sales letter.
Suddenly everything you knew about your product starts to fade away.
You can’t put into words just what it is that’s so great about your products.
You can’t think why everyone should want this amazing product.
So you begin to write whatever comes to mind. The wonderful features of your product.
What makes it so great. And why you, the creator, have had so much success.
Which means your sales page sucks. Your product doesn’t get the attention it deserves.
It doesn’t help as many people as it should. That mean’s you’re not quite able to go out and buy that Mercedes yet.
It’s not your fault though…
Writing sales copy is damn hard. It an industry all on it’s own (one which pays my bills).
So I’m about to show you how to make it stupidly easy.
In fact it’s going to be so easy that even the most illiterate Yokel in deepest Alabama could sell from it.
And you’re going to learn how to do all of it in two hours. Or less.
Because you’ve got a lot of other stuff to work on to.
You’re going to learn a year’s worth copywriting in no time at all.
Because the success of your Niche Site is more important to me than holding onto ‘Trade Secrets’.
What You'll Learn In This Post:
- 5 Quick Writing Hacks To Make Your Write Like A Pro
- How To Effective Grab Your Readers Attention…
- …And Keep It.
- The Power Of The Mystery Box
- What Your Sales Letter Should Look Like
- The One Rule You Know But Pay No Attention To
- The Art Of Solving Problems
Before you try to write your sales letter in under two hours, read this article at least once. Then come back and try to write it. Take in all the points and then build your article.
There’s a ‘Building Your Letter’ segment at the end of each segment for you to act on the information when you come back to it too.
However, planning makes perfect. Use your de facto brain – Evernote, Word, Pen and Paper – to sketch the outline of what you’re going to write as you go through.
If you’re ready, let’s get to work.
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5 Quick Hacks For Better Writing…
You’re not a writer. I get that. You’ve got far too much on your plate to worry about whether you used exactly the write style and grammar.
As long as it can be read, it will do.
Many professional copywriters have the same view. But they’re the one’s earning $5 an hour on Elance.
Because that’s not how your reader will see it.
The words you choose are part of a much bigger picture. And they have an impact on how they view you and your product.
You wouldn’t pitch an idea to the person next to you sounding like Sloth from the Goonies. So don’t do it with your writing either.
However writing good copy is hard if you don’t quite know what to be looking for. Which is about to change…
Here are some quick hacks for you to use when you start writing your sales letters:
#1: Short, Sharp Sentences.
Long sentences take a lot of energy to read.
Your reader isn’t willingly reading your writing in the same way they would read their Jack Reacher book.
Instead they’re here asking “What’s in it for me?”.
Which you’ll learn how to answer in a moment.
The best way to keep their attention is to keep your sentences short and sharp.
No more than 12 words. Get straight to the point. Then hit them with the next sentence.
#2: Write In Plain English
Big words don’t make you sound clever. They exclude the reader. Making it hard work to figure out just what it is you’re getting at.
They don’t talk like that it real life (and you’ve probably never used ubiquitous in conversation either).
Speak to your reader as your friend. Talk in words they know. Or reading your writing becomes a chore for them. If in doubt, read your sentences out loud and see if they sound like you’re actually talking. If not, rewrite it.
#3: You’re Only Ever Talking To One Person
How often have you written this sentence?
“Most people reading this article….”
If you’ve not written it you’ve definitely read it. It’s a terrible way to talk to your reader. Because they aren’t most people. They’re themselves.
Talk to them like you’re trying to get on a date with them. There is nobody more important than they are at that moment in time. There isn’t another person in the bar. Just you and them.
The word “You” is truly powerful. Use it.
#4: Use Power Words
Power words are short, single syllable words that drive your point home. They don’t leave much room for interpretation.
Pawn Shops are great at this. They always have a big sign saying:
“Fast Cash Loans”
Short. Sharp. Easy to understand. Powerful. And you’ll definitely remember it.
Here are some words that are really great to use in your copy:
Do you want a challenge? Make sentence that sells better than; Quick Easy Cash Boost – Buy Now”.
#5: Long Copy Sells Better (But It Has To Be Interesting)
Your sales page should be like a bright pink Anaconda. Long and interesting.
But it has to be interesting. It needs to speak to the reader. It needs to be relevant. It needs keep their attention. It needs to solve a problem.
No matter how bad your writing is though, long copy still sells better. So if in doubt, make it longer. But don’t waste time saying something that doesn’t need to be said.
Okay. So you’ve learned some useful tips on how to improve the quality of your sales letters. Now it’s time for you to start writing it.
Part 1: Draw The Readers Attentions
A good headline is the ultimate way to get people to read the rest of your sales letter. Your headline is the only part of your page that someone is guaranteed to read.
So it’s best to make it count. For you the strategy is simple:
Step One: Make It Stand Out
It should be clear. At the top of the page. In a different font or size to anything else written on the page.
The uglier and more out place it looks, the better it seems to convert. Because your readers love ugly, for some reason.
Step Two: Create A Mystery Box
I first learned about Mystery Boxes in J.J Abram’s TED Talk.
If you don’t have 18 minutes to watch it, he basically discusses how people love mystery in media. From films to TV, to adverts. Nobody likes being left out in the dark.
And one mystery box leads onto the next one, and the next one, and the next one.
By creating mystery in your Headline – and the rest of your sales copy – you’re able to keep your readers hooked. Because they’re always looking to find the next answer to the question.
Alex Jeffrey’s Does This Perfectly…
Take a look at this headline from Alex Jeffrey’s, The Launch Bible. See if you can spot the two methods I just mentioned:
It stands out: the font is attention grabbing. It’s much bigger than what you would normally read.
It’s also full of those power words you learned about before.
It’s got a mystery box: just what is the method that is making all this money?
Using details has a great impact on the reader. Numbers, especially ones that seem out of reach, make you want to know more.
Alex knows his readers want to earn more money. So it becomes the main focus of his headline.
Building Your Letter: The Headline
Your headline is important. Take the time to think about what you’re going to write.
Test them out on people if you need to and see what they react like.
But remember to:
1. Make it stand out
2. Create a mystery box
3. Use details that say what the reader really wants to hear
Part 2: Keep Your Readers Attention
You’ve done the hard part. You’ve got someone to read the next part of your sales letter. You have their attention.
Now it’s all about getting them to that lovely ‘Buy Now’ button right at the end of the page.
There are two schools of keeping readers on your page:
2. Letter Writers
No way is the right way; it depends on your audience and your writing style. But the next 400-500 words needs to be built around one of these.
Look at each and decide which one you like.
Scientifically this is the way to go.
Your audience are 22% more likely to remember what’s been said. And readers naturally sync with your story. Especially if they can relate to it.
They’ll also spend up to 520% more time on your page if it starts with a story. The odds are really in your favour doing this.
Start with a personal story. One that tells the story of you, your product and how it’s made your users (or your own) life so great. It might sound cliché, but that rags to ruin story is more powerful than you think.
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This Niche Marketers favourite.
This is another form of storytelling. You tell the story of your product through an ‘open letter’ to your reader. Just like Stuart’s for his 7 Steps To The Perfect Niche product.
This is perfect for highlighting a reader’s problem. You can hit a nerve straight away. It’s also easy to show cold hard facts in an engaging way.
Choose Your Method…
It doesn’t matter which method you choose.
Just choose the one you feel most comfortable writing. Or write one of each and test it.
It’s up to you.
But what should you say? Well that’s simple.
Look at your product from the readers end.
You see your product through your eyes. The person who created it.
You don’t see it from the end of the people who want to buy it. You assume everybody knows what you know.
Build your story or letter from their perspective.
What life was like before the product was a part of your life. To not have the many benefits it’s brought to your life.
That could be a story as simple as (but longer than) this:
“I used to make $20 a day as a Copywriter. I wouldn’t know where my next meal was coming from, and I had just enough to cover my household bills. But then I found Copywriting For Dummies; it showed me how to make a $100,000 living without leaving the couch.”
Or a letter like this:
“Dear Starving Writer,
Are you one of those writers? Do you make pennies for the beautiful words you craft? Do you feel undervalued and underpaid for your skills?
Well, that’s about to change when you join the 4,000 writers who made $100,000 a year incomes without leaving their sofa using the Copywriting For Dummies program”.
Now it’s time to show them just what your product is capable of.
Building Your Letter: Keeping Attention
Your only job when you’re writing is to get someone to read the next line. To hook their attention use a story or write a letter.
Look through your customer’s eyes and build a story around where they are right now.
Highlight a problem.
Connect with the reader.
Show them the grass can be greener on the other side.
Part 3: The One Rule You Know (But Always Forget)
You’re at the stage in the letter where the reader is thinking, “Yeah. Right. Whatever. You can’t really do that”.
And this is where you lose most of your readers.
Because you almost always forget this golden rule when you’re writing your copy. You know it deep down. But you never stick to it.
Proof sells products.
Everyone wants to know what their return will be. If they give you $200 what do they get back?
The most effective way of doing that is through testimonials.
If you don’t have testimonials - proof of how your product has worked for you.
This builds: trust, authority and excitement. If your audience can see your product definitely works they’re more likely to buy it.
Your readers want to share the success of others. So show it to them.
Quotes. Pictures. Videos. Whatever you can get your hands on. Make it tangible.
The best place to see this is in Personal Training. Those before and after pictures where somebody has gone from Fat To Fit using Dave’s Diet Dynamo.
You can’t argue with results. They’re compelling. They’re easy to digest. They make selling much easier.
If you can’t show people what someone else has done. Which is common for new products. Show what you’ve done yourself.
How you boosted your income. Built your empire. Changed your body, life or habits.
Building Your Letter: Backing Up Your Claims
I’ll say it again: Proof sells products.
Gather as much information as you can that really backs up all the claims you made in your opening sections.
Go to town a prove that you, in fact, a legitimate business. Not just a scam artist.
Part 4: Drive The Point Home
So far you’ve: got their attention, kept them reading, shown them it works. Now it’s time to give them the final blow. You want to drive home how much they want this product.
At this stage you probably want to talk about the features of your product.
Partly because you feel you should. Mostly because you’re not sure what to say this far into a post. But your reader doesn’t buy because of its features; they buy it because of its benefits. Why?
Because nobody cares about what your product is. They care about what your product does.
Take your phone out of your pocket. I can guarantee it can does these three functions:
1. Call people
2. Take notes
3. Check e-mails
Those are features of your phone.
And they’re not why you bought it. You bought it because:
1. It’s easier to stay in touch with people
2. You’re always able to write down important information
3. You can keep your business running no matter where you are
Do you see the difference? Benefits make peoples life better. And your customers always want an easier life, no matter the product.
Drive It Home With Endless Benefits
How does your product benefit your reader’s life?
If you can’t answer that it’s probably time to throw in the towel. Have a serious think about it.
If you’ve got an information product; what do they gain from it?
If you’ve got a physical product; how does it add to their life? Or how does it make it easier?
Your Whiskey Tasting Kit doesn’t show you the difference between Whiskey brands. It makes you a connoisseur of the world’s finest beverages. It takes the stress out of choosing drinks for your next party.
Think of all the benefits of your product and include them here. There is no reason to talk about any of it’s features.
You’re basically saying; you want my product, because without it you don’t stand a chance.
Building Your Letter: Make People Want It
I spend hundreds of dollars a month on stuff: Comic Books. Shoes. Bottles of Whiskey.
This is stuff I don’t really need. I’m not going to die without any of them. But do I want them?
Damn right I do.
There is nothing I enjoy more than getting lost in a Comic Book with a glass of neat Whiskey after buying some new shoes.
I don’t do this because I need to do it. I do this because I want to do it.
Your audience thinks the same way. They don’t need your product. So stop trying to make them need it. Instead make them want it badly.
By showing them just how much their life sucks without its benefits.
Part 5: The Call To Action
Your reader’s mouth is watering. They know it works. They know they want it. Now they just need to know how to get it.
This part isn’t as simple as it seems.
You’d normally just whack a PayPal button onto the end of it and hope for the best. But it doesn’t work like that. You need to give the reader no other choice but to click and sign over their $7.99.
That 30 day, no strings attached, Money Back Guarantee is priceless. What it says to the reader is “This product is so good that I’m sure it wont fail”.
Even though it really means, “Well, erm, yeah, this might not work. If it doesn’t you can have your money back I promise”.
You take all of the risk away from the reader and put it on yourself. And risk is one big factor holding them back.
Make It Limited Edition
You can only get this product for the next 12 hours.
Every 10 minutes, the price gets higher.
I only have space for five new clients.
Whichever one fits your product. The rarer it is the more they want it.
“Do It, Now. Right Now. There’s No Other Choice”
I’m going to send you over to Alex Jeffrey’s again for this one:
Basically Alex has said; “If you leave this page, your business will suffer. Pay the money and reap the rewards”.
Building Your Letter: Call To Action
You need to provide three things here. These come directly from B.J Fogg – the behavioural scientist that influenced Instagram.
1. Trigger: they’re prompted to pay.
2. Ability: they’re able to pay.
3. Motivation: they want it.
Everything else you’ve written should take care of number three. You just need to use the above methods to provide one and two.
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There you have it. Your Sales letter is done.
You’ve just become an expert salesperson. Because only a few people know how to build a sales letter in the way you just have.
And you can use this method for every sales letter you ever write. Forever and always. Because even though your product might change, the psychology behind selling it won’t.
So go. Reap the rewards. And start making a real impact on the customers who come to your page.
Author Bio: James is addicted to the three C's: Coffee, Copy and Creativity. He uses all three to power his Freelance Blogging business. And you should definitely hire him.