I have an Agreement on my desk which I could have read and signed about a week ago. I do want to enter into the agreement because it stands to benefit both my business and the party making the proposal. But I looked at it for a few minutes and handed it on to Pam to read. Guess what? She looked at it for a few minutes, groaned and put it straight back on her desk. Why haven’t we done it? Because it is so WORDY and bursting with industry “lingo” neither of us have had the patience to pick it up and plough our way through it to where we have to sign!
Now I realize that Agreement documents are not strictly sales copy, but the purpose of BOTH is for them to be READ and ACTED upon. If it’s that unpleasant or hard to read, then that’s not going to happen!
Your SALES COPY is your bread and butter. The greatest sin you can commit is the one that is more about your ego than anything else; the one that makes you forget what you’re actually writing this piece FOR – to make a SALE – and instead launch into an epistle to impress your intended audience with how clever you are to know so many big words and how to arrange them in such a sophisticated manner!
GET REAL! And I mean that literally!
Make your letter like a long, interesting, easy to read and CONVERSATIONAL letter!
Nobody but YOU cares about how clever you are, your clients only want to know what’s in it for THEM! If they want to read ‘clever’, they’ll take themselves off to special group where like minded individuals gather to share mutual admiration to their heart’s content.
The more you tell the more you sell, as a general rule. Let’s make an analogy here. What if the Good Lord had ordained that although we all had a partner ‘earmarked’ for us, we could not choose them ourselves and we could not SEE them before we were committed to each other? I mean not even a photo! And neither could you speak with them or get somebody else to find out all about them and report back. No the ONLY WAY we could make any contact and find ANYTHING out about our intended would be for each of us to write a letter to each other, telling each other all about ourselves!
How much detail would you want in that letter? Imagine it! Would you want to read …?
“Hi, my name is Bethany, I have blue eyes, long fingernails and I love dogs.
I don’t mind cooking and I can add up but I can’t spell”
Is that all you’d want to know about the person you’re going to spend the rest of your LIFE with? Unless you have a serious personality quirk, or you’re a thrill seeker of the highest order, OF COURSE NOT! You’d want to know EVERYTHING there is to know!
And so do the people you’re asking to spend their money with you! You must tell them everything you can! And remember what you consider to be a significant amount of $ to part with might be wildly different to the amount THEY consider significant!
Whatever you are selling, strive to know so much about it yourself; you have no trouble writing prolifically about it for their benefit. Make it easy to read and write as though you’re having a conversation.
Take the same approach to selling on your web site! That means a long, easy to read, conversational letter, leave out the graphics clutter, forget the cute animation and make “what’s in it for them” your Mantra!