How many conversations do you have with clients or prospects every day? And how many sales letters does your company send out every day?
Now ask yourself this...
Of all the sales letters you send out, how many are actually having a conversation ... on your behalf, with your prospect? Well, I wouldn’t mind betting the answer is none.
That’s not to say direct mail letters will automatically get attention and readership. But the odds of achieving those ends are greatly enhanced with letters ... especially well written letters that have a genuine person-to-person feel.
But, how can you achieve this?
Your first priority is to create a “conversation in print”. To talk to the recipient in a way that’s as close as possible to how you would if they were in front of you ... and that starts with the salutation.
Imagine you're sending a sales letter to one of your prospects called Mr John Smith. When you begin the letter you’ll start with something like...
“Dear John”, “Dear Mr Smith” or “Dear Sirs” (Unbelievable I know, but people still do this.)
But if Mr John Smith were visiting you in your office, or vice-versa, how would you greet him?
Would you walk up to him, shake him firmly by the hand, look him straight in the eye and say ... “Dear John, how are you?”
Obviously, you wouldn’t do this. So why do you persist in doing it in your letters? Why not open up with ... “Hello John”, “Good morning John” or even something like “John, do you ever have this problem?”
And when you finish your meeting, will you shake hands and say John, I am yours sincerely? Of course not ... so don't do it in your letters.
Finish with “All the best”, or “See you soon”, or perhaps “Great to talk to you John”.
Even if you’re doing mass-mailing, you should still use a personal style greeting and close because, while few people will believe the letter has been prepared for their eyes only, these touches will create more of a person-to-person feeling.
Building these simple strategies into your sales letters can have a positive impact on the response rate: try it and you'll be surprised.
To read more articles related to this go to the Generating Leads section of the Academy.