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Sales Letters: The Underrated Marketing Strategy That Still Converts

You’re considering a long-form sales letter to introduce your new product or service. You think it could be an effective way to get more information to prospective customers and persuade them of the investment.

But aren’t long-form sales letters a thing of the past? And how do you convince your target audience to keep reading?

A good long-form sales letter can still be an effective marketing tool. We’re sharing some components your sales letter needs to hook, engage, and persuade your audience.

Before we dive in, we need to talk about what a sales letter is and when you need one.

When your prospective customer needs more information than what the average product page provides, a sales letter explains your product or service in greater detail. Your prospective customer needs more convincing to make the purchase.

Founder of Launch Space Nico Prins says a landing page is most suited for:

  • Information products like online courses or PDFs
  • A limited time offer or heavily discounted product
  • A product that costs more than $20
  • A product that solves a problem your target audience is facing

 

Your goal with a long-form sales letter is to persuade readers to take the next step you’re asking them to take — to “buy now” or “sign up today.”

To win over your target audience, you’ll want to include these elements in your long-form sales letter and organize them into strategic sections in your mailer, landing page, email, or other marketing communications.

1. A Strong Headline and Subheadline

Every good sales letter starts with a powerful headline and supporting subheadline.

Your headline should be the biggest text on the page. In your headline, focus on a significant problem your customer is facing, explain how your product or service solves that problem, and quickly give a summary of what the reader will learn in the rest of the sales letter.

The subheadline should clarify the header more. The headline and subheadline work together, but both should have a clear enough message to also stand alone.

2. Relevant Media

Although a long-form sales letter relies heavily on copy, including some relevant photos or videos provide visuals for understanding your product or service and breaks up large sections of text.

The best media works with your copy, not against it. Don’t overpower your letter with too many images or videos or lose your audience with irrelevant media content. How-to videos for using your product, video testimonials or interviews, illustrations, and animations make great media content.

3. Call to Action

The call to action (CTA) is essential to any sales letter. The CTA is the next step you want people to take on their customer journey now that they understand how your product or service solves their problem.

Your CTA should be concise, clear, and easy to do. “Buy Now” and “Register Today!” are good examples. Position your CTA as early as you can for customers who are already convinced. Then include CTAs wherever possible. There’s (almost!) never a bad time to ask your audience to act.

4. The Copy

The immense amount of copy makes a sales letter “long-form.” A sales letter should give your audience detailed information about your product or service, explain how it solves a problem your audience is facing, and list the benefits that make your offer irresistible.

We know what you’re thinking: you don’t want to overwhelm your reader with too much copy. Remember, organization is key. You won’t overwhelm your audience if you use a strategic, organized marketing framework. You can find tons of frameworks for sales letters online, but we wrote about one of our favorites — Hook, Story, Offer — here!

5. Testimonials (and More Testimonials!)

Testimonials from customers or clients are the best way to convince your audience to invest in your brand. We agree with entrepreneur Neil Patel: put your testimonials at the end of your letter “right at the last chance for a conversion.”

Quotes from customers, post-purchase reviews, and interviews with happy customers or clients make great testimonials. If you’re unsure how to gather testimonials, we wrote a whole blog post about how to get started here!

When you include these elements and a final CTA, you’ll have a long-form sales letter that keeps your target audience engaged and generates sales. Still unsure how to craft a long-form letter for your product or service? Let our team at Sigl Creative help you turn prospects into customers. Schedule a call today, and our copywriters and designers will create a sales letter that converts.

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