Crafting Unquestionable Proof to Seal Your Sale, Part 1

Many of my coaching students ask about one of the most crucial aspects of writing a winning sales letter. "How do you make your proof section as strong as the rest of your copy so it virtually ensures a sale?”

Your proof section will be powerful and strong enough to carry your prospect right into the close of the letter if you follow seven simple steps. This week, we concentrate on the first three steps – what to do before you even begin. Next week, we'll continue with the four steps to take when you're actually doing the writing.

  1. Do extensive research.

    Compelling proof begins with hours of research into your product. What are its features and benefits? How does it work? What is it made of? How do you use it? What will it do for the user? What technical, medical, financial, or similar proof is there for the claims you plan to make about it? Let's say, for example, that your core promise is that your product will boost your prospect's sexual prowess – and ginseng is the ingredient in your product that is primarily responsible for this. In that case, you would do in-depth research on all types of ginseng.

    Then what? Then you dig deeper. You research your competitors' products. How do they compare with yours? How are they better and how are they worse? Much of what you find might not seem important, but don't discard it. Keep your research organized and handy. Many times, some "unimportant" information has provided me with crucial tidbits that made my proof stronger.

    We'll discuss specific Internet research sites soon in a future article – but two good places to start are Google's advanced search page (www.google.com/advanced_search) for general information and PubMed (www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov) for health-related studies.

  2. Know your prospect.

    You must "know" your prospect intimately and personally – as if he were a good friend or a member of your family. This is not only the key to writing any winning package, it's also essential for coming up with convincing proof. Because only by knowing your prospect will you be able to determine what to say – and how to say it – to convince them to buy.

    For example, if you're writing an alternative health package and you already know that your prospect fancies herself to be an expert on that subject, you might start by giving her information that she recognizes as being true in order to establish your credibility. Then, you could give her new information – something that she probably doesn't know – to prove your product's claims, to prove that you are even more knowledgeable about alternative health than she is, and as a "gift" to help her become even more of an expert.

  3. Craft and prioritize your promises.

    You will probably include one main promise and several sub-promises in your promotion. Let's go back to our example of a product that will increase your prospect's sexual prowess. That's your main promise. And your sub-promises might be that the product will also give him more energy, a better memory, and greater resistance to disease.

    How do you figure out which promise is the main one – the one that is most important to your prospect? By knowing him intimately, of course.

Start with these three steps before you begin writing your promotion, and you'll find that the actual writing of the proof will be much easier. Then, when you follow the guidelines you'll learn next week in Part 2 of this article, your proof will be personal, powerful, and ultimately profitable for you and your client.

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Published: May 24, 2004

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