Writing a sales letter is no easy task, but writing a great one is tougher still. Sales managers labor over the wording in order to get it right, and then wonder why they still fail. The reason usually boils down to the fact that they failed to think about the person they are selling to and what it is they are actually looking for.
Customers have to feel as though they are somehow benefiting from reading the sales letter, which is the one thing that is often missing. Sales letters are usually just a mishmash of various pieces of information thrown haphazardly together. The end result is a sales letter that is an absolute mess that usually ends up in its rightful place: the trash.
Keep in mind, there is no point in putting together a sales letter unless you have a product to sell and an accompanying offer. Do not use the sales letter as a way to introduce your product or company. No words should be wasted in the letter, as every single one is important in keeping the customer interested from beginning to end.
It’s not the features of your product that will attract the customer, but rather the benefits it provides. Before you write the sales letter, put yourself in the shoes of the customer and think about what would make you want to read. Can you provide an offer or benefit that simply can’t be passed up? Can you convince the customer of how great the offer is?
After taking all of that into account, the sales manager should then set about writing the sales letter. It’s the headline than can often convince the reader to continue on. The headline should directly target the customer, but be done in a way that is tactful.
If you are inexperienced in doing so, try to keep the writing as simple as possible. The headline should be no more than a single line, so try to be specific without being overly wordy. People nowadays have busy schedules and don’t want to have to commit a ton of time to reading a sales letter.
Keep it short and to the point to have the best chance of success; anything else will drive the customer away. The headline should include a benefit to the customer, which is usually enough to get them interested in the body of the letter.
Once you have the headline down, it’s time to get started on the body. The goal here is to continue the excitement that has been started with the killer headline. That means staying away from the features of your product and focusing instead on the benefits and offers that are available to the customer. Be sure to mention how they can save money or have their lives made easier by choosing your product.
Show them how much they need your product, whilst comparing it to a competitor. You have to keep in mind that the person reading the sales letter is going to have questions after each and every sentence. Be proactive by answering possible questions before they arise. You might consider an informal approach which could include using real life scenarios to catch the reader’s attention. Humor is also a good tactic, but be sure that it’s something that won’t offend.
You could use testimonials from previous customers, but keep them as believable as possible and use them in a way that is related to the customer.
Once you have summarized the benefits, finish the letter with a call to action. For example, at the end of an e-mail ask the reader to click a link or call a contact number. If you are using direct mail for your sales letter, inform the customer that they need to act within a certain amount of time to be able to take advantage of the offer.
To finish the letter off, consider adding a P.S. at the end. People often skim the contents, focusing heavily on the beginning and end. A powerful addition at the end may be enough to send them back to read the entire letter in more detail.