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Unread 21st February 2013, 09:42 AM   #1
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Default Need Sales Letter Critique

Hey everybody. This is my first time writing a sales letter. This for a local service. I would like to get some critiques on the letter so I can know if I need to tighten some of it up.


Quote:
Are You Sick of taking that long walk to the dumpster to get rid of your trash? I might be able to help.


I know you are frustrated with the hassle of taking your trash out to the dumpster once a week (or even worse everyday). It is cold outside this time of year, and nobody is looking forward to going outside, let alone walking and or driving 2-4 blocks to the dumpster. This has been an inconvenience to me over the last few weeks since the trash pickup stopped, and I am sure that you have been inconvenienced by this as well. Iíve watched as neighbors trash build up week after week with no solution to their problem in sight. Thats when I got the idea to take it upon myself to solve the problem that not only to my problem, but the problem of my community as well. I am offering to do a weekly trash pickup personally to your apartment, to save you the hassle of having to waste all that time and energy with taking the trash out to the dump yourself. It is cold outside, nobody wants to do this, and the leasing office doesnít plan on offering the service anytime soon. Allow me to save you the inconvenience.

Advantages of having a waste pickup service:

Enjoying the same peace of mind that comes from knowing that we are committed to providing you with on-time, every-time waste pickup as the rest of your neighbors.

We help you to save time on the stuff you donít really want to do, like taking a walk to the dump. While giving you more time to do the things you want, like relaxing after a long day.

*Third example*


Call me directly at xxx.xxx.xxxx to get started this week.
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Unread 21st February 2013, 09:53 AM   #2
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

Quote:
Originally Posted by SubUrbanHype View Post

Hey everybody. This is my first time writing a sales letter. This for a local service. I would like to get some critiques on the letter so I can know if I need to tighten some of it up.
There's such a word as 'please' as in...

"I would like to get some critiques on the letter please so I can know if I need to tighten some of it up."

A few manners go a long way.

Bruce Wedding summed it up perfectly with these two threads from many moons ago...

http://www.warriorforum.com/copywrit...copy-here.html

http://www.warriorforum.com/copywrit...critiques.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruce Wedding View Post

We all have skills and all of our time is valuable. We're also all in the business of making money.

What if, instead of coming in here asking for a free critique, you come here and say one of these lines:

"For a quality, free critique, I will..."

"use my graphics skills to create you a banner or header."
"offer you an hour of my php skills to setup a script or code a simple split test."
"use my article writing skills and write you a 300 word article."
"backup your sql database."
"setup a Wordpress blog for you."
"produce a video or audio for you."
"give you a copy of my product."
"give you some PLR stuff I have legal rights to."
"setup a new domain, redirects, create email and ftp accounts."
"give you a video testimonial for your sales page."
"create 10 backlinks for you on high PR sites."
"post on my blog about your copywriting skills."

You get the idea. Wouldn't this be a lot better deal for everyone involved? Or is it just about what YOU require?

Copywriters, feel free to add suggestions.
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Unread 21st February 2013, 10:35 AM   #3
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

Mark,

Please stop insisting that people say please. Because they just don't (lol).

I know, I know manners always help. But English may not be the OP's main language and he or she inadvertently forgot to say "please".

At least refer him or her to -

http://www.warriorforum.com/copywrit...-critique.html

Or just do a quick critique.

Like...

Tighten up the copy (deleting most of the non stop repetitious wording and phrasing). Keep it in logical order. Make the point with the right emotional impact. And move on.

Use enticing subheads. Never write a paragraph more than 4 - 5 lines long.

* Powerful Pre Headline, Main Headline and Sub Headline

* State The Problem - Amplify it - Then Provide the Optimum Solution

* Who are you and why should people listen to you?

* Got a good story that ties in perfectly? - then use it

* Benefit, Benefit and Benefit (using bullet points)

* And Prove, Prove Prove - how and why the service is utterly indispensable

* Irresistible Offer - with a pricing structure

* Genuine scarcity element

* Glorious Testimonials

* Reminder of the problems with the joy of the solution

* Give something valuable free

* Rock solid Guarantee

* Strong, compelling persuasive close - making people say 'Yes, we must get this"

* P.S. Highlighting the benefits and the dire and dreadful consequences if the good people don't use this service. With the immense emotional relief, pleasure and satisfaction when they do.



And then say this type of Promo is absolutely ideal for a Postcard delivered to the target neighbourhoods.


Steve

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Unread 21st February 2013, 01:23 PM   #4
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

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Originally Posted by Steve The Copywriter View Post

Mark,

Please stop insisting that people say please.

Steve
I'm old school Steve. So no, it's something I can't allow to slide because basic good manners seem to be slipping everywhere these days and it's quite simply not on. This expectation attitude of getting something for free, which at the same time could be extremely valuable advice to the OP is necessary in my opinion.

Maybe I'm just a bit old fashioned but for example, if I go to another country the first three words I'll make sure to learn are how to say hello, please, and thank you. Basic manners go a long way to help you get what you want.

Yes I still walk on the outside of the sidewalk (pavement) if I see a lady walking by.

Yes I still hold doors open for ladies too every time, these basic manners are something which I'm very strict about.

In today's busy world we should be encouraging more good manners not criticizing other people when they remind others to use some manners.

The OP given his written English above, no way is English his second language.


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Unread 21st February 2013, 04:17 PM   #5
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

Mark,

It helps me if I stay "real"

This is a 2013 copywriting forum.

On the wild, anarchic inter web.

Not a 1950's dining debate on decorum.

I wasn't criticising you on your mission to encourage "more good manners"

It's a good thing.

It just might take a while especially in an internet chat room.


Steve

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Unread 21st February 2013, 04:19 PM   #6
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

Hang on a tick. Are you implying that you live somewhere that has no rubbish collection.

How can that be possible?

Why did the rubbish collection stop?

Dan
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Unread 21st February 2013, 05:10 PM   #7
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve The Copywriter View Post

Mark,

It helps me if I stay "real"

This is a 2013 copywriting forum.

On the wild, anarchic inter web.

Not a 1950's dining debate on decorum.


Steve
My dear dear fellow,

I don't care if it's 2013 or 2113 when I'll be 146 years old, good manners will still be highly valued no matter what the communication medium is in the future.

Stop making excuses for others to show a lack of good manners. The communication medium / platform does not matter one iota. Nor the date. Nor the time.

Good manners, as I'm sure you're more than well aware, minding your p's and q's demonstrates class and a good upbringing.

There's really no need to be advocating 'feral' uncouth and totally unbecoming behaviour traits here or making excuses for another persons demonstrable lack of good manners.

What what,


Markus Parkus 'Rupert Amadeus' Andrews
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Unread 21st February 2013, 05:23 PM   #8
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

I figured the "please" was implied. This is the copywriting forum, and I was hoping to get some suggestions on the copy. Not a discussion on "manners."

To answer Jimbo13's question:
Yes, there is an apartment complex near where I live stopped doing trash pickup, from what I am guessing because they are cheap and were looking for ways to cut some costs, and decided to toss the responsibility to the tenants.
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Unread 21st February 2013, 05:38 PM   #9
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

Okay I see. By the way I am not a Copywriter so take this with a pinch of salt.

So are all the residents disgruntled? After all you are.

Because if so it is not the individual residents I would initially be targeting, it would simply be a walk in face to face with the company that own the block.

No letter required.

You offer to alleviate their image problem by getting them to write to all of the residents saying how they have found someone and negotiated a discount if x number of people take up the service. Moreover the letter would imply that they are contributing towards the cost.

eg Normally SUH charge $100 per month (this is just a number exercise) we have negotiated a 20% group subsidy and we will contribute a further $20 towards the cost making it a $60 per month cost to you.

In order to proceed with this we need to know initial levels of interest by xyz date. Have a tear off strip thingy that has name, address, contact number and a check box for interested and not interested and an envelope that says please return by Thursday.

Cost to the managing company is negligible, just the cost of printing and envelopes on their letterheads.

That sort of thing.

Do you need a long explanation or is this sufficient for you?

Dan

PS: Only if the company don't go for this, which would be odd as it is not costing them anything and makes them look good, would I think about the next step ie mailing residents directly.
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Unread 21st February 2013, 05:53 PM   #10
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

I am going the route of mailing the residents directly (for now). I might go after the company that runs the complex after I see what the response from the residents turns out to be.
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Unread 21st February 2013, 06:13 PM   #11
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

Quote:
Originally Posted by SubUrbanHype View Post

This is the copywriting forum, and I was hoping to get some suggestions on the copy. Not a discussion on "manners."
Just because this is the Copywriting Forum doesn't mean good manners escape our attention. If you'd said 'please', undoubtedly you'd be in receipt of much better answers.

Copywriting, that is, salesmanship-in-print is the most vital skill you can learn, which skill it has to be said, unlike most other facets of Internet marketing is the number one skill which can potentially add many tens of thousands of dollars profit to your business bottom line.

Given the potential amount of profit you're depending on as a result of the free advice you're asking for and the fact it only takes about 1 tiny second to type out the word 'please', don't you think it might have been better to ask this just a little more politely in the first place?

With so much profit potentially on the table, just waiting for you to walk away with, is it not reasonable to ask for a tiny display of good manners when putting in a critique request rather than coming across as if you're demanding one from other people far more experienced than yourself?

You're the one asking for our expertise after all is said and done not the other way round.


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Unread 22nd February 2013, 02:48 AM   #12
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

OP, I think the main problem is your use of the word "Need" in your thread title. It's a put off...

In terms of your copy, and I'm only a beginner, yet, I wouldn't read it.

A block of text? No thanks.

Number 1 (well, maybe not, but close) rule: White Space!

Break it down. Short sentences, short paragraphs. Paragraphs of different length.

Shorter words.

This:

Quote:
Thats when I got the idea to take it upon myself to solve the problem that not only to my problem, but the problem of my community as well
Is not only wordy but doesn't make any sence.

Joe Ditzel made a great list for beginners, there will be something of use there: http://www.warriorforum.com/copywrit...pywriters.html

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Unread 24th February 2013, 03:00 AM   #13
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

Quote:
Originally Posted by SubUrbanHype View Post
Hey everybody. This is my first time writing a sales letter. This for a local service. I would like to get some critiques on the letter so I can know if I need to tighten some of it up.
Hi,

I think you are off to a great start. Structuring your letter, offer and what you want to say better will help a lot.

First start with getting clear about what you want to offer, like...

"In exchange for x dollars per month I will pick up your garbage once per week"

You need to put that offer into your copy. How much it is, what exactly you are giving, and how to order.

Next I would tighten things up more, your copy is doing a good job of talking about what motivates your prospect.

Now make it clearer, easier to read, and use better grammar.

Some suggestions to help raise response, these do not work 100% of the time, they need to be tested:

> Try adding in sub-headlines
> Test using yellow color paper
> Try creating an order coupon
> Try coming up with a creative, inticing offer like 'first month is only $1 then just $x after that"
> Provide a guarantee
> Give your full name in the letter
> Provide your address in the letter
> Test attaching a grabber such as a little piece of a garbage bag to get peoples attention

xResponsive Advertising Agency | Direct Marketing | Online Advertising | Create Breakthrough Campaigns for Your Business http://xresponsive.com
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Unread 26th February 2013, 12:21 AM   #14
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

Simple but useful rule:

Never use a question in the headline to which a reader can easily answer NO.

In short, you're essentially saying upfront that your service only offers one benefit.

E.g., I don't necessarily hate walking a couple blocks, but I might still benefit from saving the effort/time. Leave an opportunity for me to get past your headline and read what you're offering, in other words.

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Unread 26th February 2013, 06:41 AM   #15
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Default Re: Need Sales Letter Critique

I found it both sad and humorous people waste so much time chastising others in here.

All the manners stuff could be summed up in a couple sentences by a wordsmith, one would think...

As for the letter. I would weed it out, it has too many words that aren't helping. I would inspire the aggravation they have, then quickly unveil the solution.

I also agree with hitting the property managers, first. Why chase many when a few control the many. I'd rather sign an entire complex, than 2 or 3 tenants.
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