Struggling to write an opener for your sales letter? Try one of these…

April 09, 2010
Can opener

Do you ever find yourself staring at a blank screen, with your head in your hands, desperately trying to think up the perfect line to open your sales letter with? The cursor hasn’t moved for the last 10 minutes and continues to blink at you, taunting your lack of creativity. Sound familiar?

Writing an opener for a sales letter could, in a mad way, be compared to persuading a reader to open the lid on a can of food. Unless your opener is  enticing enough they won’t want to read the rest of your writing and devour what’s inside (the can/sales letter). Still with me?

So how do you write an intriguing opener that makes people eager to read what you have to say? Well, one idea is to dip into your swipe file for inspiration (you do keep one don’t you?). But to get you started, here are a few common types of openers you might like to try:

Ask a question

  • Confused about where to invest your money?
  • If you like to [    ] you’ll love [    ]

Even better, ask a rhetorical question they’re going to say ‘yes’ to (getting your reader to start nodding and agreeing with you early is a powerful sales tactic)

  • Would you agree with me that you need to make better decisions faster?
  • Don’t you wish you could earn millions without having to get dressed or do any work of any kind?

State an interesting fact

  • High cholesterol is a ticking time bomb that can cause heart attacks and strokes, and it affects up to two thirds of adults without them even realizing it. Thankfully, your local pharmacy now offers free cholesterol and blood pressure health checks…

Tell a story

  • A decorator was suffering from a bad back when they discovered an ingenious new way of lifting heavy tins of paint to the top of a ladder effortlessly, and without spilling a drop.

Tell them what they’ll discover from reading the sales letter

  • Over the next few pages I’m going to explain to you exactly how you can increase your income and have more free time to spend on the golf course, to go shopping or do whatever you like in four simple steps…

Refer to something in the news

  • Tiger Woods is back to playing golf and many will be wondering if the time off has affected his accuracy. Had he been practicing with our golf net he’d have been able to avoid the paparazzi and improve his short game at the same time.

Tell them why you’re writing

  • I’m writing to you because you expressed an interest in our new range of self cleaning dish cloths at the recent ‘Real Homes Spring Cleaning Expo’.

Introduce yourself

  • My name is Roy Jenkins. Each day I spend a lot of time looking for ideas and tips on  the best internet marketing strategies around. From my research I’ve developed a one-of-a-kind system that sky rockets your…

Still stuck? Well, check out Pro Copy Tips’ 31 sales letter openers to see if any of those can open your sales letter for readers and get them devouring every word.

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2 Comments. Leave new

Matthew Pattinson
July 13, 2010 10:33 pm

Great post!

Whether you are a creative or commerical writer, we all hit the writers’ block wall at somepoint. It just one of those universal pitfalls suffered by all writers.

You offer up some great advice on how to kick life back into the process and break through that blocky partition.

I recently produced a similar piece which you guys might find interesting – http://creativepen.co.uk/2010/06/09/writing-for-the-web-06-writer%e2%80%99s-block-breaking-down-the-wall/

again, thanks for the post, a top read

Matt

Matt Ambrose
July 14, 2010 10:02 am

Thanks Matt.

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