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HOW TO WRITE PERSUASIVELY TO BOOST SALES by Janice Jacobs

Writing persuasively is magical: the use of persuasive words has the power to convince your readers to take some type of action, whether it’s to order your product, enlist in your service, pick up the phone, or subscribe to your newsletter. The main thrust of persuasion is to answer the question, “What’s in it for me?” Readers want to know from the very start of your ad, sales letter, or sales pitch. If what you write can’t answer this question immediately, your readers will lose interest and they won’t read further. Right away, this translates into lost sales.

Here are some tips to write persuasively to turn readers into buyers and to boost your sales.

TIP #1: WRITE TO AN OLD FRIEND

When writing your copy, imagine writing a letter to an old friend. Picture a friend who most closely fits your prospect’s profile. What would I say to convince this friend to try my product or service? How would I target my friend’s objections and beliefs to help my cause?

Use the pronouns “I” and “you” to quickly build rapport. When trying to convince your friend, you might say: “Look, I know you think you’ve tried every gadget out there. But you should know that…”

Some sales copy is written in the first person perspective, where the writer uses “I.” Other times the third person is used, with “she,” “he,” and “them.”

TIP # 2: EMPHASIZE BENEFITS, NOT FEATURES

What are features? They are descriptions of what qualities a product has. And what are benefits? They are what those features mean to your prospects. For example: The “ABC car” delivers 65 miles per gallon in the city. The benefit of this car is you’ll save money on gas and cut down on environmental pollutants.

TIP # 3: WRITE CONVERSATIONALLY

You are not writing to impress your English teacher or win awards. Your aim is to speak to your reader the way you would in person. Take some liberty in grammar, punctuation, and sentence structure. You want it to be read and acted upon, not read and admired.

TIP # 4: PUSH YOUR READER’S EMOTIONAL HOT BUTTONS

To push those buttons, you need to first know what they are. It’s important to know upfront the wants, needs, and desires of your prospective buyers. Remember: people don’t like to be sold; but they do like to buy. They buy based on emotion first and foremost. Then they justify their decision with logic. Focus on their needs and desires and you can push their emotional hot buttons.

TIP #5: PROVIDE PROOF AND BELIEVABILITY

When your prospect reads your copy, you want to ensure he believes your claims about your product or service. If there’s any doubt in his mind, he won’t buy, no matter how irresistible the deal. Here’s how to build believability in your copy:

-- Include testimonials of satisfied customers. Be sure to put full names and locations, where possible.

-- Inject facts and research findings to support your claims.

-- If appropriate, include a picture of yourself or pictures of satisfied customers.

-- If applicable, cite any awards or third-party reviews the product or service has received.

-- Include a GREAT return policy and stand by it! This is just good business policy.

-- If you are limiting the offer with a deadline, be sure the deadline is real and does not change.

TIP # 6: USE A UNIQUE SELLING POINT (USP)

The USP is what separates your product or service from your competitors. Some unique selling points for a product or service may include: 1) lowest price; 2) superior quality; 3) superior service; and/or 4) exclusive rights.

TIP # 7: CRAFT A PERSUASIVE HEADLINE

If you’re going to make a single change to boost your response rate, then focus on your headline. Why? Because most people read your headline first rather than skipping to your main copy. I like grabbing my readers’ attention with a captivating question. For instance, "Do you want to cut your electricity cost by 55%?" An appropriate headline for a sales letter promoting a weight loss program might be: "Now, you can lose 10 pounds in 2 weeks without having to diet; and it’s easy and affordable!" This headline not only solves a problem, but it also offers a quick and easy solution that keeps in mind the price-sensitive consumer.

TIP # 8: Follow the rules of AIDA to write persuasively.

AIDA stands for:

-- Attention.
-- Interest
-- Desire
-- Action

First, you capture your reader’s attention. Then you build a strong interest with the reader to keep him reading; if he keeps reading, he just might buy. Next, you create a desire. Finally, you present a call-to-action, such as to pick up the telephone, return the reply card, attend the sales presentation, or order your product.

Persuasive copy is made, not born. Persuasive writing focuses on benefits, not features. It sells on emotion and reinforces the decision to buy with logic. It paints a compelling picture and an irresistible offer. The combination of these elements persuades your reader to act, and to act now! This is persuasive writing at its best!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
JANICE JACOBS is a freelance writer for LousyWriter.com, a free website to help people write better. Get her free e-book, “The Lousy Writer’s Guide to Writing Persuasively" at http://www.lousywriter.com/free-ebooks.php.







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