Please help review my copy

11 replies
Hello!

I'm posting here to ask for some feedback on a short sales letter and order page I've written, at this address:
algebrahelpsecrets.com/store/?t=a

(Sorry I cannot make it a direct link - I'm a newish member, and need to post more before I'll be allowed to post direct URLs.)

This is promoted to people who have signed up for an email-based, algebra minicourse, described here:

algebrahelpsecrets.com/

Subscribers currently get one email lesson per day for five days. Each email encourages them to go to the above link; this email course has been alive for about one week, and so far, about 10-15% of all active subscribers visit it each day.

The copy itself has only been live for about 24 hours, and has had 12 visitors and no sales so far, at the time I'm posting this.

Thanks every much everyone who is able to help! Even short comments are appreciated, if that's all you have time for.

Cheers,
Aaron
#copy #review
  • Profile picture of the author bryansarnold
    You need a headline. Don't be afraid to place a powerful headline even though you have niche market.
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  • Profile picture of the author teohcl1919
    Banned
    [DELETED]
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    • Profile picture of the author redsymbol
      Thanks bryansarnold and teohcl1919! I'll look into developing a powerful headline.
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      Aaron Maxwell
      http://redsymbol.net/

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  • Profile picture of the author JMartin
    Who exactly is the initial target?

    I ask because the first thing that jumped out at me was your headline addresses students, but then you address parents and then you talk using "you" as it relates to students.

    If it's parents of students who are your target audience, the copy is directed wrong.

    If it's students, are these students old enough to purchase online? If not, what are you doing to retain the connection while the student figures out if your product is interesting, tells parent, parent comes to look, etc?

    Additionally, how much time is your target audience willing to devote to a solution?

    I ask again because I see no mention of "time til solution" in your copy. To me your product is something I'd have to study (great, more study time) for who knows how long to find an answer.

    Anyone who needs a solution in a reasonable amount of time might be turned off.

    In fact, it's not until late in the copy where I accidently read:

    "Inner Algebra is meant to be used while concurrently taking a traditional algebra course, or after you have completed a first term or semester of algebra instruction, to take your skill to the next level... in your current and all future math classes!"

    So this brings up a new question. Is this for college students, HS students, or both?

    If it's meant to be used along with typical class instruction (meaning it takes time to learn), do the majority of students who are going to only take one algebra course care now? Is your market reduced even further?

    If so, how could you better tailor your offering to aspiring "math people?"

    Good luck!

    Jason
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    • Profile picture of the author redsymbol
      Hi Jason! Thanks so much for the thorough and detailed feedback.

      Originally Posted by JMartin View Post

      Who exactly is the initial target?
      College students currently enrolled in an algebra course.

      There are actually three possible markets here:

      1. high school students taking an algebra course
      2. college students taking an algebra course
      3. the PARENT(s) of a student taking an algebra course

      I think #1 is going to be a relatively small market - how many young teens are self-motivated enough to spend their own money on supplementary math materials?

      (BTW, for my friends outside of the USA: I'm using the USA school progression here, where high school (HS) is for kids up to about age 18, while college is 18-19 and higher, and can include older adults returning to college later in life.)

      I just checked; my list has 80 active subscribers right now (i.e. not counting those who subscribed, then unsubscribed). I have been collecting information in the signup form about whether they are a parent or a student; 31 of those 80 identify themselves as parents, the rest as students.

      I ask because the first thing that jumped out at me was your headline addresses students, but then you address parents and then you talk using "you" as it relates to students.

      If it's parents of students who are your target audience, the copy is directed wrong.
      Ok. I think I see. I threw in that sentence about parents just in case the reader was a parent. But it actually weakens the letter for everyone.

      Well, since I do have the information in my database about whether the subscriber is a student or parent, the solution is pretty obvious: I need to develop two versions of the letter, one for each audience, and direct the mailing list software to include links to the appropriate sales letter.

      If it's students, are these students old enough to purchase online? If not, what are you doing to retain the connection while the student figures out if your product is interesting, tells parent, parent comes to look, etc?
      I guess right now I want to ignore the market of students who are not old enough to purchase their own stuff online. It just seems more complex, for the reasons you point out. Focus instead on (1) adult, college age students taking algebra and (2) parents of students of any age. (I think I can successfully lump "parents of HS students" and "parents of college students" together in the same group.)

      Additionally, how much time is your target audience willing to devote to a solution?

      I ask again because I see no mention of "time til solution" in your copy. To me your product is something I'd have to study (great, more study time) for who knows how long to find an answer.

      Anyone who needs a solution in a reasonable amount of time might be turned off.
      I honestly have not given any thought to this point. The product is indeed something that would require more study at first.

      Maybe I need to explicitly address (and neutralize) this objection in the letter.

      In fact, it's not until late in the copy where I accidently read:

      "Inner Algebra is meant to be used while concurrently taking a traditional algebra course, or after you have completed a first term or semester of algebra instruction, to take your skill to the next level... in your current and all future math classes!"

      So this brings up a new question. Is this for college students, HS students, or both?
      Answered above...

      Do you think it's ok to put that prerequisite information at that location? Or do you think it needs to be placed earlier in the letter, necessarily? I do believe it's important to include it somewhere, to help ensure customer satisfaction - I don't want someone to purchase it, and find that they are not able to use it because it's not appropriate for them at their current educational stage.

      If it's meant to be used along with typical class instruction (meaning it takes time to learn), do the majority of students who are going to only take one algebra course care now? Is your market reduced even further?

      If so, how could you better tailor your offering to aspiring "math people?"
      Good questions. Don't have an answer yet

      One comment that might be relevant: The product has produced strong results for people within a couple of weeks, which is plenty fast enough to be worthwhile for someone taking a two-semester "College Algebra I and II" course sequence.

      Good luck!

      Jason
      Thanks again, Jason!
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      Aaron Maxwell
      http://redsymbol.net/

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  • Profile picture of the author Jon Steel
    You need a powerful headline...As your website is currently - you are trusting that your visitors will automatically start reading and will understand the purpose of your site...this is risky -
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  • Profile picture of the author BlaineGlynn
    I saw you put up a headline which is not bad IMHO, but maybe you want to look at it from the customer's point of view: They are really frustrated to their wits end because they cannot figure it out, they have low self esteem about it, they are in fear of failing.

    "Does an upcoming Algebra quiz tie your stomach in knots, are you scared of failing? Learn the powerful secrets that will MAKE Algebra Make SENSE TO YOU"

    I'm not a pro copywriter by any means, just trying to get your ideas flowing.

    ~Blaine
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    Please stop digging up old threads to spam your links.
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    • Profile picture of the author redsymbol
      Originally Posted by BlaineGlynn View Post

      I saw you put up a headline
      Hm. You know, I'm confused about something here. The linked article hasn't changed (and probably won't for some time - I'll create a separate link for any updated versions). I thought that I DID have a headline originally: namely, the copy that says
      Want to UNLOCK your surprising ability and ease with Algebra... that has been SECRETLY HIDING inside of you all along?

      ... near the top. But the first two responses (one of which appears to have been deleted for some reason) said I did not have a headline. Since I'm very much a newbie at copywriting, I assumed that a headline in this context just wasn't what I thought it was. Does it have to do with the fact that I put a couple of fragments of text above it?

      So, am I wrong in considering this to be a headline? (separate from the question of whether it's a GOOD headline or not)

      which is not bad IMHO, but maybe you want to look at it from the customer's point of view: They are really frustrated to their wits end because they cannot figure it out, they have low self esteem about it, they are in fear of failing.

      "Does an upcoming Algebra quiz tie your stomach in knots, are you scared of failing? Learn the powerful secrets that will MAKE Algebra Make SENSE TO YOU"
      Yes, I really see your point here. This morning I went through the ten market diagnosis/profiling questions that Dan Kennedy suggests on p. 20 of his "ultimate sales letter" book, answering them for this context (the target market of college students taking algebra). If you haven't seen it, basically it's a suggested list of questions to ask yourself about who the sales letter is targetting, just before you write it, to help you get clarity on what they about and so you can craft compelling copy. Doing this helped me realize that fear of failure/failing grades, anxiety, and even self-worth issues are important for them.

      I'm not a pro copywriter by any means, just trying to get your ideas flowing.

      ~Blaine
      Very helpful, thanks!
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      Aaron Maxwell
      http://redsymbol.net/

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  • Profile picture of the author BillOliver
    1) The major mistake product developers make is to first think "product" then "market". Gary Halbert said: "Find a starving crowd." That is, FIRST look at the market, THEN tailor make the product accordingly.

    You need THREE products, all written SLIGHTLY differently - different color covers?
    a) HS, b) College c) Parents.

    2) This should be at the top, NOT 'Algebra Help secrets"
    Want to UNLOCK your surprising ability and ease with Algebra... that has been SECRETLY HIDING inside of you all along?
    BETTER: At Last! A Way to Make Algebra Easy.
    OR, variation on the classic;
    They Laughhed When I Said I Could Do Algebra In My Head ... But Then I Did A Demonstration.... You'd need to rewrite your entire copy for that one though.


    3) As a mathematician & statitician, you would know that the minimum meaningful sample is 120. You won't really know until you get 120 hits.

    4) TEST prices: $17, $19.95, $20 & $27, $29.95, $30
    See which is most profitable.
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    Bill Oliver (B.Bus. Banking & Finance, Computing)
    Sales Writer/Marketing Coach, Resume: www.billoliver.net
    NICHES: Financial Sector, Sales & Services, Brick & Mortar SMEs.
    btw I'm an Australian living in Malaysia & a 1978 Fiat X1/9 owner.
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    • Profile picture of the author redsymbol
      Thanks Bill. I'm writing two new sales letters starting this weekend: one for the market of college students, one for the market of parents (and for now ignoring the high-school student market for reasons given earlier). Your comments are giving me some good ideas.

      Cheers,
      Aaron
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      Aaron Maxwell
      http://redsymbol.net/

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  • Profile picture of the author Daniel Scott
    A quick skim of your copy reveals:

    No hook
    No story
    No bullets
    Few testimonials

    Essentially, what DOES it have that a good salesletter should?

    Answer: not a lot.

    You need to read some direct response copywriting books and start over... although, to be honest, I'm not entirely sure there's even a market for this product.

    -Dan
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    Always looking for badass direct-response copywriters. PM me if we don't know each other and you're looking for work.

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    • Profile picture of the author redsymbol
      Thanks for the reply and feedback Dan.

      Agreed that I need to work through some copywriting books, started seriously doing that about a week ago. I'm about half way through DK's "Ultimate Sales Letter" book (reading and doing exercises), and have more I'm planning to read and work through after that.

      As to whether there's a market for this product - there IS one, but I don't know yet if it is sizable. I had self-published this as a regular print book two years ago, and without doing any marketing or promotion, it was selling a few copies a month. The two testimonials I received were unprompted; the persons just liked it so much they wrote me to tell about it, and they agreed when asked if I could use their words.

      It's pretty easy to get people to sign up for the email mini-course, which I think is a good sign. Once I get a better sales letter up I will know the demand better.

      Thanks again
      Aaron
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      Aaron Maxwell
      http://redsymbol.net/

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