4 Crucial Elements Every Sales Letter Needs

By Leevi Romanik
22 Comments

Copywriting 101: Writing Your Sales Letter

This is part four of the Copywriting 101 series. Previously we have covered headlines and the importance of and how to craft an engaging selling story for your body text after your headline. This week we will move onto other elements of the body copy, which include bullet points, testimonials, guarantees and calls to action.

You can check out previous articles in the series here:

1. How Bullet Points Can Make Your Sales Message Shine

The bad news is that bullets are often done poorly.

Product creators or manufacturers are often obsessed with features and bullet points become the place where they pile all the features that they are so proud of. Often this can result in a big heap of technical jargon for the prospect and a whole bunch of words that don’t actually mean anything.

When you write your bullets or features think about the benefits for the prospect.

Recently in Australia there has been a car company doing some television advertisements just like this. A car savvy friend’s jargon is translated by his wife to a non car savvy friend. It is a great way to do both the features and benefits:

e.g. Car savvy person “it’s got twin fuel injected overhead cams.”

Wife to non car savvy friend “means it goes really fast.”

Poor Bullet Examples

Recently I had a client ask me to look at his salescopy. He was happy with the copy and thought the reason his sales page wasn’t converting was because of the layout and design. He was promoting a weight gaining ebook and these are a few of his bullet points about what you will learn in the book:

I almost fell asleep reading the bullet points. And this is not an isolated example. I am often astounded at the under utilization of bullet points in copy. Make sure your bullets are loaded and stacked with value and benefits for the prospect. Off the top of my head I told him that maybe we could jazz up the bullets a little bit and suggested something like this:

Really Loading Your Bullet Points

John Carlton is a master of bullet points. He loves to write them for the previously mentioned reason. He has said that he once wrote a salesletter with eight pages of just bullet points!

Something we can learn from Carlton is loading your bullets, which comes back to the features versus benefits. But it also comes back to knowing your prospect and realizing you are not selling a product or service. You are selling the dream, the real benefit the prospect wants. Let’s go through how we would load a bullet point for a sports car.

Feature:

  • 320 horsepower engine

Feature and benefit

  • 320 horsepower engine means you will go really fast

Feature, benefit and dream

  • 320 horsepower engine means you will go really fast (and when you do eventually stop all the cute women won’t be able to take their eyes off you)

So think about your bullet points and really make them prospect value driven.

2. Testimonials

Testimonials are vitally important because they build trust and social proof. Remember last article I spoke about “checking off boxes” in the prospect’s mind before they pull out their wallet to make a sale. Well testimonials and providing social proof is one of those boxes that need to be ticked off.

If your product is new and you don’t have testimonials then you need to get them. So you may offer the product for a discount in order to get some feedback. The other thing people forget about testimonials is sometimes you have to ask for them. Don’t be afraid to ask for testimonials.

If you do have great testimonials, don’t hide them away. This is a common mistake I see in copy. It is almost like the testimonials are thrown in as an afterthought.

If you are making bold claims and you have the testimonials to back it up, then introduce them into the copy early on. Put a stop to any “bull crap” detector prospects may have with your bold claims with some crushing testimonials.

3. Guarantee

Just like testimonials, this is another “check box” that needs to be ticked off in the prospects head before they reach for that credit card.

Lots of people are scared of guarantees, thinking that they will be taken advantage of and people will try and rip them off. It is important to note that a large majority of people are honest and will not intentionally take advantage of your guarantee to get your product for free. So you have nothing to worry about.

I never advise making poor quality products. If you need to learn how to make a good quality product or ways to add value to your product, check out my product creation blueprint. So refunds based on poor quality products are a different matter.

That being said regardless of how good your product is there will always be refunds. It is just probability. For any market, it is estimated if your refund rate is below 7% you are doing great.  But the amount of refunds you get by offering a guarantee will be far out weighed by the amount of sales that having the guarantee in place generates.

How Long Should I Offer A Guarantee For?

Usually the longer the guarantee the more assurance it gives a prospect. You may not always have control over your guarantee length because of your payment processor. Paypal will allow a 30 day refund period and Clickbank allows a 60 day period. You can do what some savvy marketers have done and take matters into your owns hands, which has led to two types of interesting guarantees:

1. As long as I have a pulse guarantee. Basically as long as the product owner is alive he will honor your guarantee for a refund.

2. Anytime guarantee. Even your grandchildren can get a refund on this.

Although extreme examples, it shows confidence in their product and will totally put the prospect’s mind at ease.

4. Asking For The Sale

This is also a common area where I see clients fumble the ball. After a great sales pitch, that checks all the boxes in the prospect’s mind, the sales pitch falters at the very end. It forgets to ask for the sale.

The reason this is so commonly overlooked or forgotten is that it may seem like the next logical step of making purchase so obvious. Don’t make this mistake. Don’t leave anything to chance. Tell the prospect exactly what they need to do next. Don’t assume they will know the next logical step is buying the product.

This is classic direct response marketing. So don’t forget to ask for the sale. And don’t be afraid to ask for it a few times also.

Conclusion

Well that covers the content of writing a salesletter. If you are looking for a shortcut or crash course you can check out my copywriting in a hurry post. There you will find a simple outline for writing a salesletter in a very short amount of time.

Stay tuned for next week where I will cover conversion testing and tracking. This is hugely important and I am shocked every time I speak to clients who are not utilizing proper testing and tracking. In my mind, that is just leaving money on the table.

Click here to read part five of this series.

Leevi Romanik

About Leevi Romanik

Get The Secrets of Creating and Successfully Selling Your Own Product - Leevi reveals product creation shortcuts and marketing that works to generate passive income from your own info-product in the Triple Threat Info-Product System. Grab the FREE video "How To Guarantee Your Niche is a WINNER" Click Link For Instant Access.

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22 Comments

  • You’ve given me a whole new outlook on bullet points. I’m going to start using them a alot more in my posts and more efficiently

    Thanks for that great post.

    • Glad you enjoyed it Dennis!

      Nail some killer bullet points.

      Leevi

  • Wow! Awesome tips Leevi, most people out there will charge money for this kind of info! The first tip you gave is very insightful on how someone can learn to have a bigger impact with their words. Asking for the sale near the end is the end goal and you’re right! So many people do it wrong or forget to ask for the sale. Good info, thanks for sharing!

    • Cheers Peter, thanks for those kind words.

  • Leevi – I am loving this series! Thanks for all of the advice, I think this is really helping me become a better writer. I enjoy reading all of your posts, especially the examples of what good writing should look like, like the section on bullet points in this one. :)

    ~Laurie

    • Hi Laurie,

      Glad you’re enjoying the series and getting some benefit out of it.

      I recently heard that the 2 most important skills an online marketer can have is the ability to copywrite and mastering the art of split testing.

      There may just be some truth to that!

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  • Hi Leevi great article as usual, I would like to ask you something about guarantees and refunds, I am planning to start a business where I will offer seo services what should be my guaranty policy since I will not sell products but services, I am thinking to offer to people who may not be satisfied a free bonus, what do you think about this?

    Regards Kostas

    • Hi Kostas

      Most services should be able to offer a satisfaction guarantee.

      But SEO service is a whole different ball game b/c even though you can do the best you can for the website with on page and off page SEO factors the end result is dependent on external factors out of your control.

      SEO guarantees are very tricky.

      I think it is very risky to offer any result based guarantee with SEO b/c there are just too many variables at play. And what happens if you do get a #1 ranking then google changes it’s algorithm or your competition does a crazy backlinking campaign? Then what?

      The free bonus is good. But I think also splitting payments into a monthly basis and presenting proper tracking and reporting to clients is another way so you can demonstrate exactly what you are doing for them and how well you are doing it. Plus educating them on SEO so they know it is a process that takes time.

      Hope that helps
      Leevi

      • Hi Kostas

        Most services should be able to offer a satisfaction guarantee.

        But SEO service is a whole different ball game b/c even though you can do the best you can for the website with on page and off page SEO factors the end result is dependent on external factors out of your control.

        Therefore it makes SEO guarantees very tricky.

        I think it is very risky to offer any result based guarantee with SEO b/c there are just too many variables at play. And what happens if you do get a #1 ranking for 2 weeks then google changes it’s algorithm or your competition does a crazy backlinking campaign? Then what?

        The free bonus is good. But I think also splitting payments into a monthly basis payment plan (removing a bit of risk for clients) and presenting proper tracking and reporting to clients is another way so you can demonstrate exactly what you are doing for them and how well you are doing it. Plus educating them on SEO so they know it is a process that takes time is also important.

        Hope that helps
        Leevi

  • Hi leevi,
    Guarantee with money back is one of the most important points on the list.
    Other points that I want on the list is:
    Make your clients feel exclusivity.
    Pictures speak for themselves.
    Extra discount when they buy for 2 or 3 times from you.

    • Hi

      Yes you mention some good points.

      Exclusivity and upsell possibilities are good points.

      However, be careful with pictures – they are often poorly used in marketing and can end up having a detrimental effect on sales and conversions.

      I will cover pictures and images in more detail in the upcoming series I am doing on conversion testing and optimization.

      Keep an eye out for it!

  • Bullet points are helpful, but you have to make sure that you retain a professional tone when writing your sales letter. Moreover, since bullet points are about brevity, spelling and grammatical errors are more noticeable, so avoid them at all costs.

  • I think that this post itself is a good example of how to make a good copy :) Thanks.

  • [...] 4 Crucial Elements Every Sales Letter Needs by Levi Romanic [...]

  • This is a very helpful article! Copywriting is a crucial tactic that every successful internet marketer must master. If you can write a good sales letter that actually converts, than you are automatically “in the money”. Awesome post, thanks!

  • Good article, Leevi. Great point about the bullet points. It’s always more easier to get the gist of something across than a lengthier explanation, atleast when it comes to grabbing attention in a competitive field atleast. But like you explained so well, doing them properly is a skilful job in itself.

  • I enjoyed your article Leevi

    I have been very leary of offering a money back gaureentee, after reading this I feel ready to make that change.

    Thanks for the cool ideas!

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  • Your post has given me a lot to think about Levi. I am definitely going to have to check out the previous posts on this subject.

  • [...] content effectively, you can check out these articles on writing to attract, retain and engage and four crucial elements of a sales page [...]

  • Hi Leevi,
    I just finished this 4 articles serie… great info!
    I’ve spent lots of time and energy on the creation of my product that at the end I just wanted to get it out there! I did a quick sales letter with pretty ecovers hoping that it would do the job.
    Now that i’m finally taking the time to study how to do a good sales letter, i’m realizing that I basically have to redo it completely… and i’m looking forward to apply your advices cause I clearly see how it’ll drive more sales.

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