Whether you are teaching, lecturing, training or giving a business presentation there is one underlying approach essential to the success of all those situations. It makes no difference whether you are standing in front of a class of 6 year olds, a university seminar or a roomful of business people, the formula is: – “Get their attention and then hit them with the message!” Different people will use different ways of achieving the first part of that formula but, if you don’t manage to do it, your message will be lost, ignored or forgotten.
A sales letter must follow exactly the same formula. In an earlier Blog Post (“What’s in a Name?”) I spoke of the old mnemonic, – A.I.D.A:
This follows very much that same philosophy as the teachers’ formula. The headline of your sales letter should catch the eye of a browsing visitor and make them want to know more. They will follow the link where they will find a website which creates interest and fans the flames of desire. Then comes the clincher, – a call to action. This call to action will often be an invitation to get further free information and leads to a direct contact with your potential customer.
This is why a good website is not just one almighty sales pitch. Try to make a visitor’s time on your site interesting and enjoyable; give them other things to do and see rather than just encountering a passionate plea to buy! Provide informative articles, related information, even personal details (photographs perhaps) which will help them make a connection with you and your niche.
Remember the teacher’s formula above; you will not make a sale unless you get people’s attention first. If your approach is right and you can really forge a link with your website visitors, they are far more likely to return to your site time and again, and far more likely to want to buy from you. If you go into a shop where the assistant seems more interested in filing her nails than helping you get what you really need and really want, you are very likely to go and look elsewhere. In a shop where the assistant is attentive and helpful and who really makes you feel as if it really matters to him or her that you find what you are looking for, you will almost certainly walk out having enjoyed the buying experience and with your purchase tucked under your arm – unless it’s a hat!
So, remember, before you can get your message across to your potential customer you must first get their attention! That is the basis of any effective and successful sales letter.