Business

How To Grow A Creator Business

Nicholas Verge
April 21, 2024
5 min read

Writing a high-converting sales letter is both an art and a science. 

Everyone poo poos sales letters saying they’re ancient and no one reads them, but this is really just a sign of someone not knowing what they’re talking about.

The highest grossing sales letter I ever wrote pulled $5M in 2 weeks, so yeah, they still work.

After years of experience writing these things when I was solely a direct response copywriter, I’ve been able to distill the most important lessons I learned into four essential rules. 

Follow these rules, and your work will be read by eager buyers who are excited to hit the buy now button.

Ignore these rules, and your work will be read by people who could not care less about your product.

The choice is yours

Rule 1: The Success of Your Sales Letter is Determined Before You Even Write It

I've seen it time and time again where people want to write a sales letter, but the problem is that they are writing to people who aren't enthusiasts of whatever you’re writing about.

You have to understand that sales letters don’t work on someone who's not already a part of your market. 

Let’s say you’re selling some crazy Alaskan fishing trip retreat.

If your audience aren't already into fishing, why would they bother reading 12 pages about your topic? That's where most people fail to grasp why sales letters work in the first place. The style of your copy (short form vs. long form) matters quite a bit.

Sales letters are best with niche interests.

Take a company like Agora for example. They were incredibly successful because they targeted people who were actively looking for investment advice. 

Their audience wanted to improve their ability to invest, maybe even retire successfully. They were primed to read lengthy advice.

But someone who's not invested at all in your industry? 

They don't give a shit. 

You're not going to magically turn their lack of desire into beaming desire because of your headline. They'll scroll and see a mile long letter and think, "Ugh, I don't want to read that." 

So again, the success of your sales letter is dependent on the decisions you make before you write it. 

What audience are you writing towards? 

Who are you working with? 

Who are you going after? 

That determines a huge part of your success. Choose your audience wisely.

Rule 2: Focus on the Prospect, Not the Product

I've noticed this issue across the board in all forms of sales copy. 

Whenever I read a piece and think, "This could be better," it's usually because they focus so much on their product that the reader doesn't have any real reason to want to buy it (unless they've already 100% been sold on it beforehand). 

Here's the thing - if you're not talking about the prospect, their problems, their desires, and what life would be like on the other side of achieving their desired results, you're going to lose people's interest fast. 

Readers won't relate and they won't feel understood. 

Let me give you an analogy.

There's a guy I know who, whenever we're out at a social event, always makes the entire conversation about him. It's never about anyone else. God forbid anyone else talk about themselves or share something. He always redirects it back to himself. As a result, everyone thinks he's a dickhead.

In fact, he recently sent out a text that basically said, "Hey, do you not like me? What have I done? I just want to know the mistakes I've made so I can be better in the future." And get this - he copy and pasted that exact message to eight different people. Hilarious.

But it perfectly illustrates my point. He talks about himself constantly and everything is always about him. As a result, no one gives a shit. He doesn't get any help from friends because he's seen as a self-absorbed jerk.

The same principle applies to your sales letters. 

Focus on the prospect, don't just talk about your product non-stop. 

Tap into their world, show that you understand them, paint a picture of what's possible, and you'll hold their attention. 

Make it about them.

Rule 3: About 80% of Your Sale is Dependent on the Lead and Introduction

This is a startling realization for many, but it's absolutely true. 

The majority of people are not going to read your sales letter in its entirety.

Very few will start from the beginning and diligently read all 12 pages straight through to the end. That's just not how people operate, especially in our attention-deficit world. 

Here's what will usually happen instead. 

Most people will read the first page or so, think "Huh, that's interesting," and then skip through to the end to look at the product, the testimonials, and they might hop to the middle to check out features and benefits. 

Then they'll decide whether to buy or not, very few will consume every word in linear fashion.

So what's the solution? 

You need to make your sales letter "scroll-friendly." Aim to have powerful snippets and engaging information scattered throughout the page, so no matter where someone lands while scrolling, it showcases your product in the right way. 

Most people don't do a good job of this. 

Their letters are just long, endless walls of text on a google doc. It's not scroll-friendly at all. But if you structure it properly, embracing the fact that people will skip around, you'll be in good shape. 

(A lot of this is achieved in website production for the letter)

Remember, the lead is what matters most, since it's likely the only part everyone will read. Spend ample time crafting a captivating hook and introduction. 

Then make sure you have attractive "billboards" with benefits, testimonials, and calls-to-action throughout for the skimmers.

Rule 4: The Offer is More Important than the Letter Itself

I was recently discussing this concept with a friend, comparing how this plays out in the marketing/info-product world versus the tech world. 

In tech, they are so obsessed with perfecting the product that they're willing to be unprofitable for years and years just to get it right. 

Marketing is an afterthought to them. 

They develop the product first, then figure out how to sell it.

In the marketing world though, we often have the opposite problem. 

We are so focused on the marketing and sales that the product becomes an afterthought. The copy and positioning take priority over the actual substance of the offer.

Here's what I've found. 

The majority of the success that I've experienced came from having an offer that was just really fucking good. 

You've probably heard this a million times, but it’s so important, that I’m going to repeat it again…

If the offer doesn't make people feel stupid for not taking advantage of it, as in, it's such a no-brainer that they'd be idiots to pass it up, then why are you even trying to sell it? 

Your aim should be to make it as easy as possible for people to say yes.

In fact, I'd argue that you shouldn't even bother writing your sales letter until you've got the offer completely dialed in. 

And to be clear, that doesn't mean just stuffing in more bonuses, more features, more of this, more of that. That's not what I'm saying.

What I mean is taking a hard look at your offer and assessing how you can make it as compelling as possible. 

Maybe that means adding more bonuses.

Maybe it means repositioning the core promise. 

Maybe it means bolstering your guarantee.

Maybe it means adding a new feature.

There are numerous ways to enhance your offer, and it's worth reading resources like Alex Hormozi's '$100M Offers' to dive deeper into the strategies. 

But the core insight is that the success of your sales letter isn't based on how clever your copy is. The copy is perhaps 20% of the equation. 80% is the strength of your offer. 

Is it something people actually want? Does it tap into the deeper desires and pain points of your market? The market will always show you how good your offer is. It's very fair and honest in that way.

Conclusion

Woooo, that was a lot, so let's recap the four essential rules for writing killer sales letters:

1. The success of your sales letter is determined before you write it. Choose your target audience wisely and make sure they're a match for your product.

2. Focus on the prospect, not the product. Make the copy about them, their problems, their desires, and the transformation they want to experience. Don't just harp on about your product.

3. 80% of the sale comes from your lead and intro. Most people will just skim, so make your sales letter "scroll-friendly" with compelling hooks, benefits, testimonials and calls-to-action throughout. 

4. The offer is more important than the letter. Spend ample time optimizing your offer and making it as compelling as humanly possible. That's even more important than your actual copy.

If you internalize these four rules and put them into practice, I'm confident you'll see a substantial boost in the performance of your sales letters.

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