Saturday, 6 June 2009

Marketing Consultant Tip: Write a Sales Letter

Most marketing consultants will agree that a sales letter is a great way for a company to get their foot in the door of potential clients. A sales letter can serve as an introduction, or be used like a newsletter that announces new developments to current customers.

Many business owners are not confident in their writing ability. One way to get over this fear is to decide what you want to say. Verbalise it first, then a marketing consultant can take your ideas and put them on paper, or in the content of a web page or email message.

Here are some tips to help you get started with a sales letter for your company.

First Things First

Perhaps the most important parts of the sales letter are the subject line, greeting, and opening. These are the first three things a customer, or potential customer will see when they receive your message.

Think carefully about the subject line for an Email message. These days, so many people are inundated with spam they tend to pick and choose which messages even get opened. Make sure your subject line provokes immediate interest. Ensure that it states succinctly how the body of the message is going to benefit them. You might want to offer something discounted or even free in order to grab the reader’s attention.

The greeting should be personalised, if at all possible. A generic address is a sure way to sound amateur and immediately indicate to the reader that this is a form letter.

The opening of your letter comes next. If you are sending the sales letter via Email, remember that many people use the preview pane included in their Email program so they will see the header even if they don’t open the message. Again, the idea is to make it attention-getting and eye-catching. It is appropriate to use colour here and perhaps a simple graphic.

The Body

Once you’ve attracted a potential client’s attention, don’t lose it by making your sales letter a blatant pitch. Make it friendly, informal, and interesting. You might want to consider including a story from a satisfied customer as a way to keep the recipient reading on. This also shows them how your product or service can benefit them.

Keep the text simple. Avoid using long or complex sentences or big words; neither do you want to use industry-specific jargon that might not be understood. Your sales letter needs to be easy and quick to read.

The Ending

The last paragraph should include a short summary of the content of the sales letter. Always include a “call to action”. Ensure there is a link to your website and all forms of contact, from telephone number to Email address to physical address. You do not want to make it hard for potential clients to get hold of you. Put your name at the end so it is apparent the letter is coming from an actual person.

You may want to consider including a printable coupon, or a link to a discount offer. This is a direct call to action which should result in furthering the reader’s interest. If you are mailing the letter, include a coupon or brochure that the recipient can keep.

Remember that a marketing consultant can help you with this process. If you’ve already spent too much time writing and rewriting and are still not satisfied with your sales letter, then call a professional for help. Marketing consultants can also be of benefit by obtaining mailing lists and sending out the professional sales letter in a manner that will be most effective for your business.