Sales Letter vs. Sales Video - Who will Conquor?

33 replies
Has anyone split tested a sales letter vs. a video sales letter? I've been seeing the videos pop up more and more and was wondering what the results were on them. Thanks.
#conquor #letter #sales #video
  • Profile picture of the author maximus242
    lots of people are saying videos been doing better, i know one of my clients is doing really well with them right now
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  • Profile picture of the author barakos9
    Actually it really depends on the product and what the conversion is all about?

    if you are trying to sell free course or anything like that Video will do the job for you.
    but if you are trying to sell something valuable that cost something you will need to convince with more then just a nice video...

    you will have to show testimonials , case studies , and lot's of benefits and other elements that help and i am not sure you can push all that into a video...
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    • Profile picture of the author Joel_Cowen
      Originally Posted by barakos9 View Post

      if you are trying to sell free course or anything like that Video will do the job for you.
      but if you are trying to sell something valuable that cost something you will need to convince with more then just a nice video...

      you will have to show testimonials , case studies , and lot's of benefits and other elements that help and i am not sure you can push all that into a video...
      But can't you do all that in a video?
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      • Profile picture of the author Aj Wilson
        I haven't TRULY and Specifically Split-Tested
        Sales Letters vs Video but I have been testing different sales elements ...

        using both at the same time.

        I'm experiencing conversions between 10%-19% using both...

        But like the guys above have mentioned,
        it depends on your Over-Delivering-Offer and your Audience.

        The "IM" crowd are always in here whinging about
        controls, no controls, long videos... too short videos...

        not enough or too much information...
        whinge, whinge, whinge...

        so why not give them both a sales letter to skim read,
        and a video demo of your offer (great to show proof elements and product demos) ...

        Im still learning heaps and have to streamline my videos,
        but that's what testing is all about

        all the best!

        - aj
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  • Profile picture of the author maximus242
    Interesting seeing as how people are reporting their highest conversions ever off $2000 products using only a single video and an order button.
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    • Profile picture of the author ARSuarez
      Originally Posted by maximus242 View Post

      Interesting seeing as how people are reporting their highest conversions ever off $2000 products using only a single video and an order button.
      I've been seeing this with multiple companies.

      Wasn't there a test done using video with the copy underneath is having higher conversions?

      Can't recall.

      All the best,

      Angel
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  • Profile picture of the author Aj Wilson
    We're always banging on about it because it is REALLY annoying to be treated like a child and be MADE to listen to the entire video.
    oh absolutely agreed...

    I'm not whinging that people are whinging... I just know if
    you can provide a solution to peoples whinges it can be profitable as well

    I mean...

    That's what our industry/profession is all about
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  • Profile picture of the author Matt MacPherson
    Video above my sales letter slightly lowered response. It was a well done video too.

    I guess I'm the odd one out.

    Matt
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  • Profile picture of the author johnyeo90
    i like sales letter than sales videos..this is because sometime my internet connection sucks and I might have to wait for a long time to load(especially for those videos that more tan 80mb),eventually just close it up instead keep waiting for it to load..Well this is just my own opinion on sales videos.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dean Jackson
    Suprisingly, I find that words keep my attention longer than video. I can't stand not being able to skip to the part where I want and it just gets ridiculous.

    And every video seems to have a long ass rags to riches introduction before you even know what the product is.

    I want to know what it does, how it benefits me, and the price of it. I can find that within 2 minutes or less with a letter without having to guess where it is in the video. And no I can't sit still for 20 odd minutes to find out lol.

    There was a post that someone got from copywriting board explaining this I think. Or maybe it was the short vs long argument, I don't recall but I'll try find it if anyone really needs to know.

    - Dean
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    • Originally Posted by Dean Jackson View Post

      Suprisingly, I find that words keep my attention longer than video. I can't stand not being able to skip to the part where I want and it just gets ridiculous.

      And every video seems to have a long ass rags to riches introduction before you even know what the product is.

      I want to know what it does, how it benefits me, and the price of it. I can find that within 2 minutes or less with a letter without having to guess where it is in the video. And no I can't sit still for 20 odd minutes to find out lol.

      There was a post that someone got from copywriting board explaining this I think. Or maybe it was the short vs long argument, I don't recall but I'll try find it if anyone really needs to know.

      - Dean
      I agree that those long videos with the big introductions making the presenter out to be very important leave me cold as well.

      However what if the video was highly targetted to the search term, and ONLY addressed the issue in the search term with a brief reference to the product on sale.

      I've had some success with this approach, and the other benefit is that your landing page has two ways of being seen 1) via the page itsself (PPC or SEO) and 2) via youtube or whereever you host the video (I prefer youtube).
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    • Profile picture of the author MarkWidawer
      Originally Posted by Dean Jackson View Post

      I want to know what it does, how it benefits me, and the price of it. I can find that within 2 minutes or less with a letter without having to guess where it is in the video. And no I can't sit still for 20 odd minutes to find out lol.
      The difference between what we LIKE, as potential consumers, and what we RESPOND TO, as real consumers, can be vast.

      I agree with you, Dean, that I like being able to decide, in a few seconds, whether I'm looking at something that I'll want to buy, or whether I'm wasting my time.

      That said...

      It may be that the compulsion to watch the video as produced, and in order, is what makes videos work as well as they do.

      And that brings up the point that when split testing between videos and sales pages, you'll always be testing something other than just the medium. You're also testing the script, the graphics, the way the offer is presented, the way the guarantee is presented, the position on the page, the production qualities...and on and on.

      That said...

      I've done a few tests of sales pages vs video and find that video typically improves conversions by a minimum of 50%. And believe it or not, they can be far easier to do.

      Here's the bottom line, when making any changes to your sales page: test everything! Guessing costs money.

      --Mark
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  • Profile picture of the author John_S
    No one will conquer. Intelligent marketers will use the medium best suited to their audience.
    Conquer what? These people are reading their sales letter in front of a camera. Their text-only, plain old, never-meant-for-video Sales Letter. The vast majority still haven't discovered scriptwriting for sales yet.

    About the only positive thing you can say is what these "persons" are doing is better than shadow puppets. It is not a sales video.

    It might hint that -- when there are sales videos -- there may be something for a letter vs video thread to discuss. Will your great grandchildren this thread location. I'm sure they'll be mystified.
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  • Profile picture of the author JamesJeffery
    Ask yourself a question, what is the purpose of a sales video? Then ask would your product really benefit?

    My answer is no. A video should complement a sales letter, and not be used on it's own to sell a product. Television, and YouTube is the only place I could see fit for a sales video. But even then, I would only use a video to build leads to follow up.

    And before you say "OH BUT JAMES! ... PEOPLE ARE MAKING MONEY FROM VIDEOS!!" ... good for them. How much more could they make from a well written sales letter WITH a video to compliment it? Have they tested it? And if so, was the sales letter even up to par in the first place? There are way to many factors to make a definitive answer.

    When you sell a product you need to give the user every bit of detail that will help sell the product. Headlines are great for dividing these bits of information. A percentage of buyers will skim a sales letter. How is a buyer going to skim a sales video? Also, a sales letter can be 1, 2, 3, 4 pages long (when comparing a web page to A4 paper). This would make a LONG video. This brings us back to the "skipping to the parts you are interested in" topic.

    If a sales video is 10, 15, 20 minutes long the potential buyer is likely to press STOP. They don't have time. They are at work and they don't have sound. They are in a meeting or confernece. They could be anywhere that stops them from watching a video. Granted they could save your page and come back later ... but will they?

    I highly doubt I will ever use a sales video on it's own. I might use one with a sales letter, but there are to many bad points with sales videos that could lose me profits.
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  • Profile picture of the author TK1
    Sales Videos are nice to my favor, but:

    - Please don't make them 2 hours long

    - Please don't disable the possibility to pause, resume and see how long the video goes

    and again:

    - please don't make them 2 hours long (which I know many pro's would disagree as people build trust by reading long salesletters and watching long salesvideos)

    Additionally I like mixed salespages, with a 5 minute video and copy to read.

    TK
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  • Profile picture of the author John_S
    Yes, but selling a how to make sales letter videos to others selling how to read your sales letter on video, so you can sell your how to make videos that sell your how to course on video sales letters ...now that needs a video sales letter.

    It might take two hours to say all that.

    I just wonder why my video on Circle"jerk" marketing never took off. I know there's a market. And, unlike all those people selling videos on selling videos ...on selling videos; my idea is very visually oriented.
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  • Profile picture of the author nemock
    I know the question is intended to be an "effective headline," but it's also funny because this is similar to the "war" between long and short copy.

    The real question is: why would it even matter for one to be the victor over the other?

    The content of a good video contains all the elements of long copy. One way or another, you're delivering the content.

    To suggest that video automatically outperforms long copy is obviously fallacious. If you suck at video, and rock at copy layout, your copy will always blow your video conversion numbers out of the water. The opposite is true as well, though if you suck at long copy, you might have a hard time developing video content that converts...but maybe not.
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  • Profile picture of the author copycashvalve
    Jason Fladlien -"I will go against the grain of what everybody else has said; I have never lost a split test when I take my written copy against a video, unless the price point was over 197$. Ok, so anything under 197$ I've never lost a split test with long form written sales copy over video. Now there is one other exception, the only time I would consider using video is if the product is easily demonstrable. So for example, a product on how to publish amazon books in 14 minutes. So in this case, since you can demonstrate it, then it would make sense. These guys who are reading power-point slides on sales page, I could beat with written copy, I guarantee I could unless the price point was over 197$. Ideally you would want to use both a little bit of video to enhance copy."
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  • Profile picture of the author John_S
    These guys who are reading power-point slides on sales page, I could beat with written copy, I guarantee I could unless the price point was over 197$.
    I don't think you're allowed to make this much sense on the 'net. It's really for "tastes great -- less filling" or "the Hulk could so totally beat superman" type discussions.

    It is not so much writing to the eighth grade level as thinking with a grade eight mentality. Try throwing in a "...so there" every so often.
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    • Profile picture of the author copycashvalve
      Originally Posted by John_S View Post

      I don't think you're allowed to make this much sense on the 'net. It's really for "tastes great -- less filling" or "the Hulk could so totally beat superman" type discussions.

      It is not so much writing to the eighth grade level as thinking with a grade eight mentality. Try throwing in a "...so there" every so often.
      I was just quoting someone that has done several split tests in the realm of IM.
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  • Profile picture of the author burnbebe
    From our experience, the sales video did better in terms of getting mroe people to our site... but only because we posted it on YouTube.
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  • Profile picture of the author lknielsen
    Personally, when I land on a page I would like to see both. Sometimes I am just not in the mood to watch a video and I can read fast. Other times I would rather just watch a video. Do you think maybe others feel the same way?
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    • Profile picture of the author SEOArbiter
      Although videos are certainly an extremely popular and useful marketing tool now, I think it is going to depend on your product and offer. One would work better for say an instructional course vs. the other for a more service-oriented product or service. It would also depend greatly on your budget.
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  • Profile picture of the author WickedWally


    So Ryan Deiss says that video salesletters got him 300% more conversions than standard salesletters.

    Who knows... he could be full of sh*t too.

    Try it out yourself and see if it works.









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  • Profile picture of the author copycashvalve
    I actually like Diess for the most part and granted we all tend to use arbitrary numbers when coming up with figures, it's normal, 300% i'm not sure is.

    Video if used right will do very well, so i've been told.
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  • Profile picture of the author FreshPLR
    I think what matters is the trust building between the reader (potential buyer) and the vendor of the product or service. If the reader can get a strong feel for the character of the person offering the service then it doesn't matter whether it is a video or a sales letter or both.

    A short letter can be better than a long letter which could be better than a video.
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    • Profile picture of the author iSoftware
      It's easier to EMOTE with video....

      Also, in a few cases (example Alex Mandossian) I've seen "audio sales letters".

      I think you're seeing alot of these because you can reach people through multiple sense points...

      Also some people are auditory, some are visual, some are a combination.

      I think the point about video scripting and the just reading a sales letter is valid too....

      I'm curious to see if these things can significantly boost conversion %'s on lower end products (below $97). I respect JFlad's opinion but at the same time it mediocre video produces better results than a good sales letter, in terms of what the average non professional copywriter can do, perhaps there's an argument for it....

      I also think getting a PROFESSIONAL VOICE OVER ARTIST helps. I've paid good money for people with 10+years experience and it can often be worth it....
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  • Profile picture of the author Flareman
    Most of the sales videos we see today are merely narrated versions of their sales letter, like an animated powerpoint. Its no different from listening to a person presenting at a podium where he reads off a script and doesn't even engage the audience with eye contact.

    The benefits of using a video is so we can engage the senses of our viewers in more ways than just visually via sales letter. Theres sound efx, music, animation, transitions which if done properly, will all help to create the desire emotional state for the call to action.
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  • Profile picture of the author irishpolyglot
    I use both - my site starts with an extremely convincing sales video and then the letter follows. With the video sales have improved dramatically. When you see it you'll understand why (proof of concept):
    languagehacking.com
    When you are in the video it also helps you connect with your readers much better!
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    • Profile picture of the author Biz Guru
      COMBO Platter the Best Answer?

      Accepting the fact that each situation is unique, the bottom line is that Video out perform and convert better.

      As with anything you must split test. Also the best solution is to start with a video if they try to X out then take them to the salesletter. Also try setting a timer so in case they leave the computer and video running that when they come back your script redirected them to the sales letter automatically.

      (I would say set this for about 5-10mins of no activity after video ended)

      - Your video should be around 12 - 24 mins Max.
      - Set it to autoplay
      - Remove the controls (most players allow for pause)
      - Optin, squeeze or presell videos should be under 3 mins max

      P.S. It sounds weird but Borderless players are converting VERY high lately.

      Cheers,

      Kevin
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      Cheers To Your Success,
      Kevin
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