Is The Sales Letter Dead? - How Do You Feel About Them?

25 replies
I think I saw my first long winded sales letter on the internet back in 2005 or so. You know the kind that starts out something like:

"Dear Friend,

Are you pulling your hair out trying to make money? If so read this letter because I'm going to tell you a million ways you can make money online and save your hair too......bla, bla, bla"

and continues on and on for pages that usually lead to a "buy now" button.

It's true that I've bought a fair number of products on pages like this.

But now whenever I come to a site with this kind of sales copy, I almost always immediately close it.

It seems I've become allergic to that kind of sales letter.
I'm guessing that I'm not the only one who feels that way. It makes me wonder if the sales letter is dying out on the internet.


What's your experience?
Do you still read them?

And, do you know of any marketers that are using alternative methods successfully?
#dead #feel #good sales letter #letter #sales #sales letters
  • Profile picture of the author Saj Gupta
    It depends. Some who have been in IM for a while now are almost prone to delving into the meat instead of all the gravy surrounding it, whereas those who are getting started like to read the background of the person and how (s)he got started, why they are selling this etc etc.

    Overall I have seen a big shift from long sales copy to videos as pre-sell and for sales.
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  • Profile picture of the author Scott Murdaugh
    Check out the copywriting forum for literally hundreds of posts on this exact topic.

    Here's my take on it...

    I'm not saying anything bad about Ryan.

    I don't know the guy personally, but the people I do know who've talked to him say he's an upstanding guy and the products I've seen of his are generally pretty good.

    Ryan Deiss' Video Sales Letter Formula

    "Old fashioned long-form sales letters ARE DEAD..."

    "I will probably never write a long form sales letter again..."

    His latest pitch...

    Idea Hatchery

    Looks like a sales letter to me.

    I'm not taking a cheap shot at Ryan.

    However long copy is not dead. Neither is video.

    And I get the feeling in the near future a lot of sites will be a mixture of different media and types of content...

    See the following examples...

    Target Focus Training -

    Online Guitar Lessons

    Dating Advice For Men | How to Attract Women and Use Pick Up Lines

    And there are dozens more.

    Why go this route?

    Because the internet is changing. And the way people want to be marketed to (online) is changing.

    And ad networks are changing. To even get our ads approved for Google, Facebook and other sources of traffic the site has to have a lot of content. It has to be like a megalogue offline...

    The sales message itself has to be too valuable to ignore.

    Just my opinion. And I'm happy to elaborate/debate if anyone wants to talk about it.

    But, copywriting isn't dead.

    And to be fair to Ryan, he said he'd "probably" never write a sales letter again, and I'd say there's a good chance he outsourced this one, so technically he probably wasn't lying

    -Scott
    And you can check this thread for more opinions.

    http://www.warriorforum.com/copywrit...you-think.html

    The final word. TEST.

    Thanks,

    -Scott
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    Over $30 Million In Marketing Data And A Decade Of Consistently Generating Breakthrough Results - Ask How My Unique Approach To Copy Typically Outsells Traditional Ads By Up To 29x Or More...

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  • Profile picture of the author Lou Diamond
    Hello,
    I like to read shorter to the point sales letters, I usually just scroll down to the bottom to get to the point anyways.
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    Something new soon.

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  • Profile picture of the author Underground SEO
    I think you need a sales letter, especially if you are selling IM products, what else would people who sell on clickbank put on their homepage for example?
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  • Profile picture of the author JayXtreme
    Originally Posted by markament View Post

    It seems I've become allergic to that kind of sales letter.[/B]
    Most marketers have this feeling, once they've seen a few.

    It's really easy to let this get in your way, and block out your objectivity when faced with a long form sales page.

    It would be wise to overcome this objection..... for one reason only, if you intend not to buy:

    STUDY

    Do you still read them?
    Yes

    I read a helluva lot of sales pages recently.

    Regardless of what the vocal minority will tell you around here, Long form sales pages are still working wonders, and creating magic right across the web.

    Sales pages in this arena are FAR from dead. Learn that craft, absorb that magic.

    We have some of the best copywriters in the world operating in this very industry, it would be foolish to ignore all those free lessons being given on sales pages...

    The launch/sales page sequence is a fascinating beast. Almost something sexy about it.

    So much value is given and can be found, simply by observing how other people are doing it. Many launches give away more value in the sequence than they do in the actual products.

    And, do you know of any marketers that are using alternative methods successfully?
    Yes, plenty.

    Video, for example.

    But then again, video is just long form sales page in disguise

    Peace

    Jay
    Signature

    Bare Murkage.........

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  • Profile picture of the author R Hagel
    Big companies still spend money sending sales letters via regular postal mail. Omaha Steaks comes to mind. Many charities send me long sales letters. So do political groups for fundraising purposes. I even got a long-form sales letter from a mail order clothing company (and it was a good read).

    So no, sales letters ain't dead -- online or offline, in IM or pretty much any other market.

    Cheers,
    Becky
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  • Profile picture of the author DeadGuy
    Sales letters are not dead in the IM money making niche simply because you are telling people exactly what they want to hear (if you do it right). In other niches, long sales letters have never worked... and never will. It really depends upon the niche.
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    You are making this work at home stuff way harder than it is. Ready for some sanity? Clear your head and start over.

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    • Profile picture of the author scrofford
      Originally Posted by DeadGuy View Post

      In other niches, long sales letters have never worked... and never will. .
      This is completely false. There are many niches I have seen with long copy sales letters and they have pulled in thousands for the product owner.
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    • Profile picture of the author JayXtreme
      Originally Posted by DeadGuy View Post

      In other niches, long sales letters have never worked... and never will.
      Are you sure about that?

      Experience tells me otherwise.

      It really depends upon the niche.
      You said it
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      Bare Murkage.........

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      • Profile picture of the author DeadGuy
        Originally Posted by scrofford View Post

        This is completely false. There are many niches I have seen with long copy sales letters and they have pulled in thousands for the product owner.
        My statement is completely true. You are correct that there are many niches where long sales letters are very effective. Certainly, you must agree that your reference to "many" niches does not imply "all" niches. We certainly cannot extrapolate that assumption across the board. That simply would not be true. How do I know this?

        A number of my niches involve scientific, medical and other types of sophisticated technical equipment. I can assure you from sad experience that attempting to promote products such as these by means of a conventional long winded sales letter is a disaster. There is just a huge difference in the mindsets of the potential customers. These folks buy on technical aspects alone and there are precious few emotional buttons you can push. There is no slippery slope.

        My point is this. Know your customers. If you honestly believe that a long sales letter will affect their purchasing decision then go for it. If it will work against you, the answer should be obvious.
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        You are making this work at home stuff way harder than it is. Ready for some sanity? Clear your head and start over.

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  • Profile picture of the author scrofford
    I think it depends on what you are selling. I am reading a copywriting book right now and it is recent. It talks about long copy still being very important and viable. Most copywriters would agree with this. Long copy can help you get your message across a lot easier than compacting it all into a smaller shorter version.
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  • Profile picture of the author MoneyMaker Guy
    Why are people still investing thousands on copy writing courses? Simple they want the formula to write long sales letters and make their fortunes.

    Sure, video may be taking over a bit these days but I even get sick of video when all these Gurus keep banging on for 20 minutes at the start of the video all about who they are and what they have accomplished. Enough already use that intro to market the product.

    Ok, Ranting over, I still buy from a well written long sales letter. Call me an anorac
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  • Profile picture of the author Nickel
    I'm sure these letters do work for some people. Honestly, I would always hit the back button when I came to a page like this. I wouldn't even read it. Now that I'm getting into the IM field, I scroll down to see what it is going to cost me, decide if I can afford it, then decide if I'm interested. Even the websites I create for affiliate marketing aren't sales letters.
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    recruiting duty suggestions appreciated
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  • Profile picture of the author kindsvater
    Some of the best sales letters are even LONGER these days. They're called videos.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dalton Dewar
    Video sales letter seem to be the new thing....rather bury the original format of sales letter do a split and then make that determination...
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  • Profile picture of the author TimGross
    Originally Posted by markament View Post

    Is The Sales Letter Dead? - How Do You Feel About Them?
    The good news of course is that there's nothing to wonder about how you "feel about them". You don't need to form an opinion at all, and you don't need to second-guess anything:

    You just need to scientifically split-test different sales approaches to discover without a shadow of a doubt what sells best for your particular product.
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  • Profile picture of the author allegrity
    I'm sure it is becoming common and obvious to consumers that they are trying to be sold something whenever they see that sales letter.
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  • Profile picture of the author Scott Murdaugh
    I'm sure it is becoming common and obvious to consumers that they are trying to be sold something whenever they see that sales letter.
    Funny thing about customers (not browsers), if they're on the site they're wanting to buy something.

    When I buy say a laptop, I want the sales guy to answer every question I have about it, and sell me on why it's the right laptop for my needs...

    That's what sales letters do.

    -Scott
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    Over $30 Million In Marketing Data And A Decade Of Consistently Generating Breakthrough Results - Ask How My Unique Approach To Copy Typically Outsells Traditional Ads By Up To 29x Or More...

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    • Profile picture of the author markament
      Originally Posted by Scott Murdaugh View Post

      Funny thing about customers (not browsers), if they're on the site they're wanting to buy something.

      When I buy say a laptop, I want the sales guy to answer every question I have about it, and sell me on why it's the right laptop for my needs...

      That's what sales letters do.

      -Scott
      That's a really good point, Scott. I guess it makes a big difference the quality of the traffic that you are getting - I mean what their intent is - information or purchase?
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  • Profile picture of the author Ishan Soni
    I look at the headline. See if I am interested in the offer. If I am interested I look for reasons NOT to buy it.

    If you make an irresistible offer, people will buy your stuff and so will I.
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  • Profile picture of the author thomashoi
    Originally Posted by markament View Post

    I think I saw my first long winded sales letter on the internet back in 2005 or so. You know the kind that starts out something like:

    "Dear Friend,

    Are you pulling your hair out trying to make money? If so read this letter because I'm going to tell you a million ways you can make money online and save your hair too......bla, bla, bla"

    and continues on and on for pages that usually lead to a "buy now" button.

    It's true that I've bought a fair number of products on pages like this.

    But now whenever I come to a site with this kind of sales copy, I almost always immediately close it.

    It seems I've become allergic to that kind of sales letter.
    I'm guessing that I'm not the only one who feels that way. It makes me wonder if the sales letter is dying out on the internet.


    What's your experience?
    Do you still read them?

    And, do you know of any marketers that are using alternative methods successfully?
    Seriously, i don't bother to read the full length but will like to watch videos.

    Sales letter converted to videos, I think that's the trend. This keeps the
    visitor stayed on your site for a longer time and have a longer attention span.

    Some of the top clickbank vendor are already switching to video sales letters.
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  • Profile picture of the author zenmack
    I am new to IM an I am also using video sales letters or attempting to. I just put 1 up:


    HOW TO MEET WOMEN
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    • Profile picture of the author thomashoi
      Originally Posted by zenmack View Post

      I am new to IM an I am also using video sales letters or attempting to. I just put 1 up:


      HOW TO MEET WOMEN
      Wow, that's cool... if you can put an opt-in box and give more free videos, this will
      easily hook up your visitors and then you can sell your products to them.
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