A Stupid Question
This is a stupid question but it has to be asked.
Does your sales letter create as many sales as you would like?
What proportion of them respond to your advert?
What is just as important, how many of those that responded actually purchased your product?
How can you improve the response rate?
How many new email addresses did you capture?
Do you have an 'opt in' strategy so that you can mail them later with more offers without being accused of spamming?
Let us look at the sales letter first.
Does it stand out? Does it grab your attention?
Does it shout, "READ ME, READ ME, READ ME".
On the other hand: Does it give a tantalising hint at something interesting inside. Something of real benefit to the reader.
Does it ask a question that can only be answered by reading the content of the letter?
The letter itself.
Is it speaking to a group of people? Or is it a one to one conversation?
How many times does it say 'You' compared with the number of times it says 'Me, We or I'.
Your readers are not interested in you or what a marvellous gadget you are offering. No, they are only interested in what it can do for them. How much better off they will be if they invest their hard earned cash in your enterprise.
Will it help them to become rich, a better person, happier or better looking, Will it make them more attractive to the opposite sex?
Convince them of just one of these, or similar things and the price will not matter.
It all boils down to "What's in it for me."
The old adage: "Sell the sizzle, not the steak" is as relevant now as it was in the old days of door knocking.
Let's go back to the original sales letter. How good was it in the first instance? Were you happy with the initial response? if so, what went wrong? Has it become stale. Would a makeover put it right? Perhaps it just needs a new headline.
If the click through rate is good, it would appear that the headline is doing it's job. Should the ratio of purchases to clicks-through be poor I would suggest that the text of the letter is not up to scratch.
The problem may not be in the letter, or the headline. It could be that you are not aiming your advertising at the right people. Whatever you are selling, a very large percentage of the population will not be interested in it. You must find those who are the most interested in your particular product.
You would not think of advertising fishing rods in a boxing magazine.
It is amazing how many things are aimed at e-zines and other media that have little or no relevance to the product.
Let us assume that we are advertising in a selection of ezines. How do we know which ones to use? The surest way is to sort out some likely ones and subscribe to them. Ask for some back issues. Get a feel for the type of readership. Would they be likely to be interested in your product? Or have you another product that would interest them? I have had some of my best product ideas from reading an ezine that had no relevance to what I was selling at the time.
I generally try the cheapest adds first, if I am sure that the readership is right for my product and the cheap ad' pulls even a few sales, I then put a similar ad in the best position in the ezine, knowing that if the small ad' works, the bigger ad will surely make a good profit.
Should the cheap ad' not work, don't give up yet. You can generally get a good idea of what is working by studying the other ad's in the ezine, especially those that appear week after week in more than one ezine. Type out a similar ad' but for your product and see how it goes.
Copy other people's methods but don't copy their adverts. As soon as someone has written something, it immediately becomes their copy write and you would need their permission to reproduce it. (The main exception is if you paid that person to write it for you.) In that case it is best to decide who is the owner of the copy write before you start.
Don't give up. If you have faith in what you are selling, you must find the best methods of advertising it.
Then it is up to you to write the best advert that you can. Always remembering that it is the headline that must capture the reader's attention. Without a good headline, the best advert in the world will be overlooked and just a waste of space, time and money.
I hope I have given you something to think about. In this business your adverts are your shop window. The aim is to get their attention and invite them to come in and take a closer look. I wish you all the best in your business ventures, remember, You are a very important member of the community. Without the small businesses, the world's economy would collapse over-night.
By for now.
Robert J Farey