Author Box
Articles Categories
All Categories
Articles Resources

9 Easy Steps to Writing an Effective Sales Letter

April 18, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 150

Writing terrific sales letters is simple...when you know how. That's exactly what you are about to learn in 9 easy steps. Say goodbye to wasted time writing letters that never get read. Master the skills that drive your message home and get the sales results you want.

Step 1 - Getting your copywriting act together

Copywriting, like planning a road trip, have something in common. They require smart planning to enjoy a successful outcome. Before making a single keystroke on your computer, gather your thoughts and ideas about your topic. Then begin structuring the framework of your sales letter using the following elements...

  • Introduction
  • Capture attention and interest
  • Main Body
  • Develop your sales proposition
  • Conclusion
  • Reason for buying your products and services
  • Call to Action
  • Ask for the order

The introduction must make the purpose of your letter perfectly clear. This is not the time to get cute and tease the reader. Get to the point and grab their attention, motivating them to continue reading.

The main body of your letter essentially contains the presentation of your sales proposition. It should outline features and benefits. Tell prospects and customers how your product and services help them by providing real, tangible benefits.

Your call to action should include an incentive to motivate action such as...

Fear of Loss

Offer good while supplies last

Desire for Gain

Mention this letter when ordering and get a 10% price discount


We come to your home free of charge


Don't risk your life and property

Now, ask for an order. Don't be timid about it either.

Step 2 - Shake them up - wake them up

Unless you capture the reader's attention, your letter may quickly end up in the bin. You should invest time and imagination preparing headlines and paragraph headers that entice the reader. Consider bolding key words and benefits for time-poor readers that skim your letter before actually deciding to read it. Allow plenty of white space to make the letter appear inviting and easy to read. Break up lengthy paragraphs. Add a picture or two. It's always a good idea, especially pictures of faces and places.

Step 3 - Step into your customer's shoes

Know your target audience. You must write at their level of comprehension and understand what pushes their buttons. If you are not quite sure, do your research first. Once you establish who you are speaking to, write in a manner that convinces them to consider your offer. Tell them what they are interesting in hearing and how you can help them.

If you really want to deliver impact, consider personalising your letters when practical. Use the recipient's name and include something in the letter from your CRM history database. Here are some examples...

John, as a preferred customer you are invited to attend our pre-sale for the best selection

Mary, as a gold member you are entitled to a special 5% discount when ordering

Peter, for your birthday gift redeem the enclosed 10% discount coupon on your next purchase

Step 4 - Keep it simple

Using multi-syllable words may impress your family and friends but it could easily alienate the person reading your well-intentioned sales letter. Easy reading which is quickly understood and absorbed helps get your message read. To avoid writing letters only scholars could possibly decipher, follow these simple guidelines...

Conversational Style

Sales letters present a welcome opportunity to write as you normally speak. Take advantage of it. Write as if the person is sitting across from you. Use a warm and inviting tone in your writing style. Don't make it too casual or friendly. Use contractions sparingly and use words like 'you and your.' Avoid using the words 'I, we and our' whenever possible.

Short Sentences

Nothing is more boring and confusing than compound sentences that seem to never end. Keep your sentences short and sharp. Think of them as small building blocks that create a bigger picture.

Brief Paragraphs

Huge paragraph blocks and plenty of them create a daunting, overwhelming sales letter. Would you be encouraged to read it? Your reader feels the same way. Design the layout with enticing headlines and small, well-placed paragraphs that encourage people to read them.

There is simply no excuse for misspelled words and grammatical errors. It is the quickest way to discourage your reader, detract from your credibility and damage your brand. Use a spelling and grammar checker followed by a text-to-speech software tool that reads your writing aloud. You will be amazed how well you identify mistakes when you listen instead of just proof reading.

Step 5 - Excite and stimulate

Motivating a reader peaks their interest and draws them into your message. Here are some writing ideas to motivate your readers...

Provide a continuous flow of exciting information

Build the momentum of your writing by interjecting new developments and discoveries

Write in the same style and tone you use when speaking to customers

Make every sentence interesting - if you think it's boring, so will your readers.

Include a photo of yourself if you plan to personally sign your name on the sales letter. The face-to-face image adds a sense of sincerity and trust in your readers.

Step 6 - Merchandising your words

Retail store owners merchandise their window displays to attract attention and lure shoppers into their store. Use the same strategy with your sales letters. A well written letter simulates a storefront, drawing readers into your writing and sales proposition.

Document design, layout, colours and imagery are supportive elements of your writing. They create a subliminal and imaginative backdrop that enhances the visual impact and professionalism of a document. Use designer templates included with most publishing and word processor applications. Add your logo to the template and customise it by changing colours to match your brand and standards.

Step 7 - Assert your authority

Gaining the reader's trust is essential to make a sale, especially if you own an online business instead of a 'mortar and bricks' storefront. Potential customers must believe in your credibility and that of your business. Attaining this level of trust must be established in the second paragraph of your sales letter.

Begin by telling the reader about yourself. Avoid being too general. The personal approach has greater appeal and is more believable. Next, be unique. Tell them something that distinguishes your business from the competition, especially if you offer an exclusive product or service. Try to minimise the use of incredible statements that raise alarm bells in the reader's mind.

Avoid excessive self-proclamation. Let your reader know why you are an authority in your area of expertise but keep it modest and brief.

Step 8 - What are you going to do for me?

Customers buy from you for two basic have something they want or need. Write a sales letter that convinces them you are the ideal choice to fulfil a particular want or need.

In every customer's mind, they are thinking, "Why should I buy from them?" Give them a reason. In fact, give them several reasons to prove that your product or service delivers tangible features and benefits. In the examples below, features are highlighted in orange text and benefits are highlighted in green.

  • Quality products for years of dependable service
  • Volume purchasing to save you money
  • 5 year guarantee for peace of mind
  • Free technical support services always available 24/7

When marketing your business, don't assume that customers instantly recognise the benefits of your products and services. Tell them in clear terms how they will benefit.

Step 9 - The inevitable close...with a twist

If you want an order, you must ask for it. When you have done this, instruct the customer what they must do next. For example, if you only sell products online, give the customer detailed instructions about how to order on your website.

You want the customer to act now. Review the points in Step 1 - Getting your copywriting act together about asking for the order. Use incentives to motivate the customer with limited time offers such as...

  • Percentage Discounts
  • 2-for-1 Promotions
  • Free Gifts

Whatever teaser you use that creates a genuine concern about fear of loss in the customer's mind, write a strong close to convince them you have what they really want and need.

About the Author - Bob Hoffman is a SEO Digital and Print Copywriter. He has more than 30 years business experience in management, sales and graphic arts and is currently the director of Pebble Ridge Corporation Pty Ltd trading as PRC Marketing.

Free Reprint Articles - You may reprint this article using digital or print media provided that you do not change the article. When you reprint the article, you accept and agree to indemnify Pebble Ridge Corporation Pty Ltd, trading as PRC Marketing and its directors, officers, employees and agents from and against all losses, claims, damages and liabilities which arise out of the use of the article.

To read other free articles, please visit our Articles Web Page. PRC Marketing - Experience the Quality... Discover the Difference

Source: EzineArticles
Was this Helpful ?

Rate this Article

Article Tags:

Advertising Copywriter


Copy Writing






Marketing Copywriter


Seo Copywriter

A speech is similar to an essay, except that a speech is meant to be spoken, while an essay is meant to be read. If you wish to write a great speech that will impress your audience till the end and

By: Denize Rodricks l Writing & Speaking > Writing l December 07, 2012 lViews: 254

The ability to writing great headlines hold the key to getting people to read your article or sales copy - whether you publish it online, send as email or even print it on a magazine. Learn how you

By: Prince John l Writing & Speaking > Creative Writing l July 10, 2012 lViews: 246

Unemployment rate in India has been one of the most terrible problems that it has been facing since its independence. Corruption and crime has increase manifold due to the unemployment factor.

By: Vaibhav P. Bhadange l Writing & Speaking > Creative Writing l July 10, 2012 lViews: 383

Four out of five adults say they have a book inside them. Only two percent actually write and publish their masterpiece. Talk is cheap. Just do it!

By: Ted Bowman l Writing & Speaking > Creative Writing l July 09, 2012 lViews: 217

You have wanted to see your book in print for years and now, thanks to self-publishing, you reached this goal. Now you must market your book, an uphill climb for any author, especially a new one.

By: Harriet Hodgson l Writing & Speaking > Book Marketing l July 08, 2012 lViews: 241

Choosing the right creative writing program could compensate for copywriting in businesses, although, it is a whole different course subject. By being successful in such a competitive industry you

By: Edward Joseph l Writing & Speaking > Creative Writing l July 06, 2012 lViews: 221

Working as a freelance writer is one of the most popular ways to make money online. There is plenty of work for those who love to write. Having a solid grasp of language and being able to write in a

By: Teresa A Douglasl Writing & Speaking > Copywritingl April 25, 2012 lViews: 157

You can become a professional copywriter only if you have the ability to write persuasively with impeccable grammatical skills. It is a very rewarding career and has an extensive scope if you have

By: Mike Hussy Andyl Writing & Speaking > Copywritingl April 25, 2012 lViews: 178

The inspiration for this article is from three public spelling mistakes I saw recently in the same day. I found myself pondering these mistakes more than usual, because arguably they were only minor

By: Sally M Evans-Darbyl Writing & Speaking > Copywritingl April 21, 2012 lViews: 167

Can you show your prospects how your product makes life easier for them? If not, read this article to help you brainstorm new ways to think about your products and services...

By: Chris Doverl Writing & Speaking > Copywritingl April 19, 2012 lViews: 122

In learning copywriting, books can take you only so far. Books do not tell you whether or not you are applying the fundamental concepts intelligently and masterfully finessing the finer points. They

By: Marcia Yudkinl Writing & Speaking > Copywritingl April 19, 2012 lViews: 140

Today, everyone is looking for people who can write affordable SEO articles. It is understandable. The Internet or World Wide Web as the technical jargon goes is omnipresent literally and

By: Madeleine Mullerl Writing & Speaking > Copywritingl April 18, 2012 lViews: 137

Proven techniques are revealed to help you improve your sales copywriting skills and increase your sales conversion rate. If you need to boost the results of your persuasive writing, you are about to

By: Bob Hoffmanl Writing & Speaking > Copywritingl April 18, 2012 lViews: 122

You have decided it's time to roll up your sleeves and create a written masterpiece. Good for you! The first step to creating awesome copywriting depends on you. For example, how well do you express

By: Bob Hoffmanl Writing & Speaking > Copywritingl April 17, 2012 lViews: 126

Discuss this Article

comments powered by Disqus