How Long Should a Sales Page Be?

I asked a simple question in a few Facebook groups the other day …

“How long should a sales page be?”

I got responses ranging from as long as it takes to sell the product to it depends on the price to I have no idea.

Now here’s the answer:

It depends on the amount of your offer. Your sales page should include enough of the RIGHT words to propel the reader into action. (Yep, they got that one right – I hang out with a ton of smarty pants folks :))

For example, let’s say you’re selling a $75 mini-course on how to sell shoes online. You have a few videos, worksheets and that’s it. Now, you don’t need 50 pages of text to sell a $75 product.

You’d literally kill folks with your words. And NOT in a good way.

Second, it depends on your audience. Selling to a bunch of ice-cold folks who barely know your name? (You may want to rethink doing that, but that’s for another email.) You’ll need more words to get them to part with their moolah.

Third, it depends on what type of product you’re selling. Is it a “gotta-have-it” or a “need-it-in-my-life”?

Let me break this one down:

Gotta-Have-It Offers

A gotta-have-it offer is something folks don’t NEED to survive but want to so they can live a happier, richer, healthier life. Think of coaching services, copywriting, health coaching and so on. No one’s going to die without these (well your business might), but you see my point.

To sell these items, you need to do some serious copywriting because you have to stir up the DESIRE for the product when logic is telling them that what you’re selling is not something they require. With a long-form sales page, any good copywriter can make the reader believe they need the product or service.

Need-It-In-My-Life Offers

On the other side, you’ve got the need-it-in-my-life offers – clothes, food, shelter – life’s essentials. Now to sell these items, all you need is a fantastic unique selling proposition (USP) and copy that makes the offer sound irresistible. You can usually do those two things in less than 3 pages – think billboards and magazine ads.

Alright, so what’s the answer, Apryl?

How long should a sales page be?

Well … it depends. I can tell you that the sales pages I write for clients who sell products and services ranging from $47 to a few thousand bucks are between 600 to about 2,000 words.

But I want you to know that it’s not about the number of words, it’s about having the right elements to make folks wanna smack the buy button. Now, I share all these elements in my new book, Shots Fired! How to Write Copy that Pierces Hearts (And Opens Wallets). 

In the meantime, I know you want something today to make this sales pages thing a whole lot easier. And, of course, I got you covered.

So …

Here are the top 4 questions you MUST ASK yourself before publishing your next sales page:

  1. Did you pierce the heart of the buyer and make an emotional connection?
  2. Did you paint the picture of the “promised land” and how the buyer’s  life will improve after buying your product/service?
  3. Did you address the buyer’s objections to investing in your product/service?
  4. Did you make it easy for the buyer to smack the buy button? Side note: You should always include buy buttons throughout the page (folks get annoyed when they have to go all the way to the bottom to click – make it easy).

And that, my friend, should hold you over until you can get your hands on my bestselling book.

Are Your “Killer” Headlines Killing Your Sales?

Got a great question the other week:

“Apryl, how can I write ‘killer’ headlines?”

Frankly, this is one of most frequently asked questions copywriters get.

After all, if nobody makes it past the headline, you can stick a fork in your offer – no matter how irresistible it is or how intriguing your sales page.

So let’s have a little informal “challenge.”

Read the following email subject lines and try to guess which one had the highest open rate:

  1. Shake what your mama gave ya
  2. Free writing help
  3. Why do we use swear words

Advertising critics would say:

“All these suck!” There’s no pain or benefit! Where’s the numbers, we all know list subject lines are awesome? My mama didn’t give me anything to shake? ‘Free’ will get sucked up in spam filters. Who swears in business writing? You’re nuts, Apryl!”

And, of course, these critics would be wrong.

Before I tell you the winner, here’s a dirty little secret:

Focusing all your attention on the market is the magic of copywriting. And when you write headlines, think market first, product second.

Do this and you’ll get way better results. You see when you talk about someone’s insecurities, trends, past times, fears, wants, pains, you will never bore them. They will hang on your every word. And your headlines will never go ignored.

Let me drive this lesson home.

I sent the “shake what your mama gave ya” email in March to promote one of my copywriting services, and at that time it had the highest open rate of all my emails – 60%. Nowadays, I rarely even check email stats.

I don’t let open rates and click-through numbers mess with my mind anymore.

The only number that matters are sales.

And that number has tripled over the past few months.

Anyways, here’s the point:

You can find “killer” headlines anywhere.

Just flip through the “junk” magazines at the checkout line in your local grocery store.

Watch the news and listen to how the anchor leads to a story right before the commercial break.

Listen to heart-wrenching one liners in hip-hop, gospel and country music.

Go to a movie.

Play with those addictive little headline analyzers (just for fun, please).

“Killer” headlines are literally everywhere.

Focus on What Matters Most

So don’t stress over writing so-called “killer” headlines. Frankly, they can kill your sales because they usually don’t focus on what matters most …

The Market!

Gurus will tell you to use numbers to your headlines.

Include explosive words.

Insert “You.”

And these are theoretically solid tips.

But really, all you gotta do is …

Focus all your attention on your audience first. The loyal followers and fresh pile of leads you want to invest in your products and services. And then the product or service.

Do this, and your headline will be killer without you fussing with “guru” tips and tricks.

Plus, you’ll make a ton more sales.

At least, that’s what has worked for me.

Intrigued? Excited?
Ready to attract more clients, close more sales
and make your bank account extremely happy?

Turn your copy into cash with my fabulous Friday writing digi-chats. Join us now and get your copy of the “Write Like A Boss Guide”for the hefty price of FREE.

How to Respond When You’re Asked About Price

One of the most effective ways to approach the pricing question is with the assumption the prospect on the phone with you will – right out the gate – be shaking her head and saying to herself, “this chick is a lunatic if she thinks I’m paying that!” when you reveal your price.

In other words, with every benefit you toss out there, just assume she will object to the price.

She might want to just pay what you’re asking and get started with the project (if you’ve targeted your market right and have copy that sings the value of your offering).

But chances are she’ll have sticker shock.

And yet, there’s a special way of selling to skeptics like this that prevents them from running for the hills when you reveal your price.

What is it?

Simply think of your prospecting call as a sandwich.

Here’s what I mean:

Your “meat” is the price.

The two pieces of “bread” are both some form of credibility element (such as your experience, testimonials, endorsements from a respected professional, etc.)

And to make your price “objection proof,” every time you reveal it, simply add a credibility element – even if it’s just a few words – that backs up the price both before and after the price.

What to Say When You’re Asked About Rates

So your conversation could go like this:

Her: “Alright, so how much is it?”

You: “Before we talk price, let me say this. If you’re looking for a cheap [business plan, website design, etc.), then I’m not right for you. My clients make millions off my [business plans, website designs, etc.] and results like those require a high level of quality, which is what I deliver.”

Her: “Okay …” (Thinking to herself, this is going to expensive.)

You: “With that being said, for this service, you’re looking at $XX. That rate includes XYZ. With XYZ in hand, I can almost guarantee you’ll get the results you want, as long as you market/present it right.”

Now, if you’re talking to the right person (someone who can afford your services), then she will undoubtedly whip out her credit at that very moment.

 

7 Timeless Tips for Persuasive Writing

So you just met your dream prospect at a networking event. And you heard the angels sing when he said, “send me the details!”

But now what?

Follow these 7 timeless persuasive writing tips to land your next client.

Tip #1: Be Persuasive

My No. 1 tip for persuasive writing is making the content about the prospect, not you as the awesome service provider.

Always start off your letter, email or other business communication with details on what the prospect will gain by hiring you.

People are selfish. So if your writing focuses on “me, me, me” you’re sure to lose your reader’s attention … fast!

Tip #2: Know Your Audience

This rule is critical because, after all, how can you effectively sell a solution if you have no idea who you’re speaking to?

Do some research to identify the right buyers for your services. And do this BEFORE you hit send or drop your letter in the mail.

Tip #3: Be Clear

Your sales letter should hit on three key points:

  1. How the prospect will benefit from your services
  2. Who you are (and why the reader should care)
  3. How the recipient can get their hands on what you’re offering

Sales letters should be only as long as necessary to deliver this information in an engaging and persuasive way.

Tip #4: Be Relatable

Sales letters are intended to engage and persuade your prospect. Yes, it’s fine to create a template. Templates save time and prevent you from needing to write your letters from scratch each and every time, but you still need to infuse your letters with some flair.

Let your personality shine through. Tell a relatable story. Use a casual, professional tone. Whatever you do … let your personality ooze from the page.

Tip #5: Be Courteous

I get it … email is the fast, new way to contact prospects. And you’re not sitting by the phone for prospects to call. So, you decide to include only an email address in your letter.

Uh oh! Remember, it’s not all about you. Give your prospects options to contact you via phone, email, snail mail … message in a bottle if necessary.

Tip #6: Speak Their Language

Tone is a common issue with sales letters. They have an awkward, robotic tone that turns off the reader from the opening sentence.

When writing sales letters, picture yourself having a face-to-face conversation with your prospect. What words would he use? Would his tone be casual? Whatever the answer – match that same tone in your letter.

Again, show your human side. CEOs and company big wigs hear people use jargon and corporate-speak all day long, it would be refreshing to read a letter that’s down to earth and relatable.

Tip #7: Smoke Out the Typos

What’s the quickest way to sink your chances of building credibility with your prospect? Deliver a letter riddled with typos.

Your spelling, grammar and punctuation should be perfect. Spell check, proofread, ask your wife’s brother’s cousin to read your letter … whatever you need to do. But please proofread your letter before sending it.

Bonus Tip: Follow Up

Even with the best sales letter, people may not respond right away. So do you bury your face in the sand and give up?

Heck no!

You follow up. A study done by the Association of Sales Executives revealed that 81% of all sales happens on or after the fifth contact.

So, if you’re only following up once or twice, imagine all the business you’re losing out on.

Dying to get more money-making writing tips like this, join my Word Boss Mastermind Group on Facebook.

How to Know if You Need a Copywriter or a Lawyer Who Practices Copyright Law

I was asked to speak at a local entrepreneurship event – one of Cleveland, Ohio’s most notable conferences. Our panel discussion was fun, amusing and full of “real talk” from women business owners who are finding success.

Anyway, here’s the good part:

After the event, attendees were lined up to hear more about my business. I had already talked to 10 or so folks when bright-eyed Carmen sat across from me and said:

“I wrote a brilliant book that’s going to change the world, but I’m worried someone will swipe my story. What can I do?”

Copywriter vs. Copyright

That’s when I had to explain that a “copywriter” has nothing to do with a “copyright.”

A copyright makes sure you don’t get screwed if someone decides to steal your great idea.

A copywriter writes sales messages that appeal to specific audiences.

Bottom line:

Copywriters write the words that get people to buy what you’re selling.

If you’re looking for someone to protect your brilliant idea, then you’d be way better off calling a lawyer who specializes in copyright law than dialing up a copywriter.

Very common mistake. But you see it’s all in the spelling.

Feel the Power of Copywriting

Anyways, if you want to tap into the power of copywriting, go here:

http://www.baab.biz/freeguide/

Inside, you’ll find a ton of profitable tips and tricks to get people to do what you want.

Now, I gotta warn you that it’s all pretty dangerously wicked.

But it’s completely legal and ethical.

So click and be persuasive.

You’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain.