February 19, 2018 by Razvan Rogoz
How Understanding Your Marketplace Is More Important Than Persuasion.
From the desk of Razvan Rogoz,
In the last months, almost every single person I’ve meet interested in my services asked me the same thing “how long does it take you to write 1000 words?”. He may also ask me “what is your rate for 1000 words”.
Then I go into a long explanation – it takes me 30 minutes to write those 1000 words and about 10 hours to do the research to know how to make those 1000 words effective. At this moment, the other person usually loses interest and has no interest in hearing me that a sales letter is made to fit a specific challenge and not a one size fits all solution.
This or I hear “If you know what you’re doing, you should be done in 30 minutes”, usually as a tactic to write a sales letter that costs four figure for $50.
But, contrary to popular belief, this is true. It’s not a tactic to justify me charging more. A good sales letter is not a sales letter that sounds good. It is one that takes into account your prospect, your market, your competition and the unique nature of your product to deliver an emotional and rational argument that finally leads to a sale.
This is of extreme importance. A sales letter is not a piece of literature. A sales letter is not meant to be creative. That field is called “creative copywriting” or “Madison Avenue copywriting”. What you see in TV ads or in brand awareness campaigns is not what works for you as an online marketer.
A sales letter is salesmanship in print. It is like taking a salesman, a real person and putting his pitch on paper. The pitch may be boring or interesting. That’s not relevant. What’s relevant is that it connects with the prospect just in the right way, leading to the sale. The best sales people are rarely the most exciting or interesting people. Instead, they are more low key, focusing more on the prospects than themselves. A good salesman knows how to seduce and seducing is about enticing someone else with something SHE WANTS, not that you want.
This is one of the most counterintuitive things about human nature. If we want others to do what we want, we must lead and deliver what they want, not what we want. It’s so hard. You have no idea how often I focus only on my needs and I express in terms of my self interest, not in the terms of what the other party wants.
To give you a brief example, I’m doing a lot of networking and in the last two or so days, I talked about my preferences, my wants, my options. Not surprisingly, I’ve broke rapport fast and the others were not interested in meeting me anymore or lost their enthusiasm fast. I am a copywriter, I am a life long student of behavior and I still make the first mistake in the book, not answering “WIIFM” – What’s In It For Me, from their perspective, not mine.
So if I do this mistake and this is one of my main skills, what do you think about the engineer or the designer or the product developer that hasn’t built a career by persuading others? How hard do you think it is for them? And this is the reason why good coywriting is so rare. Most sales letters don’t sell. Most campaign fail. The reason it’s not because they are badly written. The reason is that they talk to the marketer, not to the market, like the entrepreneur is selling himself on the idea.
This problem is compounded when we are an authority in a field. If you take a “I’m better than you and you need to respect me for this” approach in your sales letter, you’ll alienate your prospect completely. Your prospect doesn’t care if you’re a world class executive, a Nobel prize winner or a 180 IQ genius. The prospect cares only WHAT YOU DO FOR HER. They give you their time in exchange of a promise of a benefit.
To put you in a good frame of mind about selling, think about your prospect like this …
Your prospect is like a very beautiful and skeptical girl which accepted to date you after months of you insisting. She tried to get rid away of you again and again but finally agreed to go out with you. You have her attention but she’s going to leave the restaurant the first moment she feels bored. Yes, she’s not a very kind lady but your prospect doesn’t owe you anything.
One mistake and she’s gone. If you don’t entertain her and make her feel special and promise her the benefit of an amazing evening, she’s gone. You must be her fantasy.
So it is with selling. The prospect doesn’t know you. He doesn’t care about you. He is not interested in your story. He’s interested only in what you can do for him and how your presence will make his life so much better. Your prospect is NOT your friend. Your prospect IS NOT patient with you. Your prospect is in front of you only because you’ve promised to make him thinner or richer or more attractive to the opposite sex.
This is what makes copywriting hard. This is why it is an insult to ask a copywriter how long does it take him to write 1000 words. A sales letter is like a perfect romantic date, it must be planned, everything must go right, it must be paced. It’s not a set of random points thrown in the face of the prospect hoping that he’ll buy (although this is how most try) but rather a well orchestrated meeting where you leave no detail to chance.
To be honest, it takes me about two hours to write a 3000 words promotion. Yet, it takes me ten or twenty hours to brainstorm, structure, refine the argument in order to know how to write this. And maybe, so should you.
Are you interested in discovering how I can help your business or how we can apply these concepts to your own venture? Then let’s have a talk. For a limited time, I’m giving away complementary 30 minute calls. In these sessions, we’ll discuss ways in which we can maximize your customer value, boost your conversion, achieve more sales and increase any other relevant metrics in your business.
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The Business & Self-Improvement Copywriter