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Cornerstone concepts act as an invisible structure for a sales letter. Like bricks, they build on each other and become a conversion machine for sale.
You've likely heard that a compelling sales letter contains certain elements, including headlines, emotional storytelling, intriguing bullets, the lead, the hook, the "big idea," the customer's belief matrix, and other factors that come together.
Between the levels of these elements, however, are three principles that are woven into every hyper-effective retail copy.
They are a picture, a proof and a promise.
These three cornerstones form the critical backdrop for the canvas on which you will paint your message. This news turns cold buyers into your ever-growing brand audience.
Related: The 6 Essential Components of Effective Sales Letters
Your sales letter shouldn't be about what your product / service does or what it is. Your customer doesn't care.
Let me repeat: no. Takes care.
What are you interested in? Themselves.
How do you get them to care? Paint them a picture they can step into and feel for themselves.
Consumer self-centeredness is nothing new or personal. So if you want to sell record numbers of your product / service you need to reach the level of your ideal customer and create images in your copy.
Every customer is the hero of their own story and it is your job to use images that make them the hero of that story.
“In 2 weeks of taking this vitamin, you will have so much energy that you will be able to climb this mountain, run the Boston Marathon / play a full basketball game with your teenage son (and beat him ) … Imagine waking up in the morning with a pain-free back and moving around as if you were 21 again … "
Create positive, meaningful pictures of what the product can do for your customers and how it will change their lives. Use them throughout your sales copy to keep the consumer the center of their story, not yours. When you do, you will build legions of loyal fans who made you the hero of their own story.
To improve sales, you should sprinkle a sufficient amount of evidence in your messages. Some clients are based on logical decisions, so you need to make your copy believable.
Credibility is how credible you are to a potential customer. This is created by a combination of two factors: authority and social proof.
Authority draws on facts from resources that have a certain status in society. Status is the degree of appreciation you have for advice and / or establishing facts from a source. For example, if you're looking for information about chronic migraines, your primary care doctor might be a good source. You can attest that he has studied medicine for 22 years, specializing in the treatment of migraines and cured 1,000 migraine sufferers.
Your brother-in-law Jerry who changes oils at Jiffy Lube but swears if you put tree moss between your toes it will cure your migraines, probably not that much.
Documented research from universities, medical institutes, or consumer protection groups are examples of credible resources. Quotes, authors, researchers, and experts are additional credible resources for your sales copy.
Related: 10 Secrets To Building Trust And Credibility With Your Customers
The core of every sales letter is your offer, which is a value proposition. A value proposition says, "You give me _____ and I will give you _______ back."
As simple as it is, this has been the essence of every transaction between buyer and seller since the beginning of time.
But your product / service has to deliver a specific result and that is your promise to the consumer.
A promise can be direct or indirect. If it's direct, include on your copy, "If you give me ______, I guarantee you will get _________." Then use this promise as the basis for your offer and as a guarantee in your sales copy.
When a promise is indirect, subtext is usually used to layer it in your sales message.
“In my seminar, you will learn the secrets of investing that have produced over 100 millionaires in this past year alone. Follow the directions in this exercise program for 30 days and you will have the physical strength of a 25 year old weight lifter … If you follow these 3 simple marketing steps, you will immediately see a 10% increase in business bottom line … "
Use a combination of direct and indirect promises in your copy. This creates a successful sales message that gets your customer to take action and buy.
Related: 5 Essential Tips to Improve Conversion Rates
Tinker your conversion machine
Copywriters are trained to use the structure of sales letters to get your brand across. This is the science of effective copy that is robust and proven. It's like a Timex versus a Rolex – one is a digital representation of the time shown while the other is an analog masterpiece that has been fine-tuned with the utmost precision and perfection of purpose.
But the material of your sales letter falls flat without the 3-Ps: picture, proof and promise.
Use the 3-Ps as fuel when crafting your marketing message in a way that will attract customers, grab their attention, take your customers on their hero's journey, and consider why they should choose you over a sea of “me too” for your success Conversion machine.