How to avoid having your sales letter dropped straight in the bin!
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Our guest blogger this week is the lovely Karen O’Mahoney from Market Energy who provides Marketing support you can switch on and off to suit YOUR business
In my last blog I talked about how to target your copy towards your reader. I thought I’d follow that up today with a bit specifically about sales letters.
Earlier this year, I received this letter in the post (the names have been changed to protect the innocent!).
Dear Mrs K O’Mahoney
Well 2011 has been a very eventful year for myself and my ABC colleagues. On a personal note I would like to say a big thank you to all who have supported me.
As a company ABC Ltd continues to go from strength to strength. For the second year running we have been voted the best widget company by readers of the Daily Blurb newspapers. I am extremely proud to be part of a company who cares about our customers. We won the award because of our high standards of customer service and as this echoes my own ethos, I feel it is richly deserved.
We continue to expand across the globe and now have colleagues based in Ireland, Germany, Netherlands, Australia, USA and South Africa.
There are many fantastic widget offers available exclusively to you, your friends and family so don’t forget to make me your first port of call whenever you want to buy widgets. I am here to help you find the perfect widget to suit your own personal plans.
So can you spot what is wrong with this? Where do I start?!!
Here’s a few suggestions on how this letter could be improved, I’m sure you’ll get the gist and see more for yourself.
Get the personalisation right, please, I’m Karen or Mrs O’Mahoney. We all know the letter is mail merged rather than personally typed but at least make an effort to create the illusion of the personal touch.
I’ve got to the second paragraph and actually, I can’t be bothered to read on. There is nothing so far that offers me any type of benefit or solves any problem I might have.
Count up the number of times the letter talks about ‘I’ or ‘my’ or ‘we’. When what it should be talking about is ‘you’.
You’ve expanded worldwide. Bully for you. I only operate in Northamptonshire so I don’t care.
OK, I’m having a quiet day and so I have actually ploughed on to the end. What do I do now? How do I contact you? There is no call to action, no offer to tempt me to give you a try.
In summary, the whole letter is pointless. It offers no benefit, no reason for me to contact them or buy from them. If you are going to send out a letter, please think carefully about what you write. Otherwise you are wasting your money and your readers’ time.