As a copywriter, I’ve seen (and indeed written) sales letters that span from one page to 50-plus pages. And, as a rule, regular businesses’ sales letters fall into the first category (one or one-and-a-half pages max) while the epic sales letters tend to be the preserve of investment opportunities, money-making concepts, internet marketing and so on. These are what I would describe as ‘American-style sales letters’ because they’ve been used in the States for decades. Also, many people believe that they work better over there than in the UK. Some people call these ‘get rich quick’ sales letters. But whatever your product or service, how long should your sales letter be?
The rule of thumb is to ONLY say as much as you need to and not a word more, or less. This is because the sale rests purely and simply on the answer to the question “What’s in this for me (the customer)?” And if you can answer this question in three or four paragraphs with a bundle of bullet points, then that’s as long as your sales letter should be.
A highly interested prospect will read several pages of engaging, well-structured copy on a product or service which is intricate but which grabs them from page one – usually along the lines of how to make lots of money quickly, easily and without risk (hence why some people call these ‘get rich quick’ letters). But in today’s busy world, most business-to-business and business-to-consumer sales letters tend to stick to one or one-and-a-half pages.
So next time you write a sales letter be sure to apply the rule: Only say as much as you need to and not a word more – or less.
And, unless you’re offering a way for the reader to make lots of money quickly, easily and without risk, go for the briefest-possible sales pitch.
Visit my sales letter copywriter website for more information.