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Here's the scenario: your company has made the final cut, and you and a partner are scheduled to make the Big Presentation to the purchasing committee; close the deal, and the two of you will split a high five-figure commission, with significant residual income throughout the life of the contract.

No question about it, you and your partner are going to spend a substantial amount of time preparing, organizing and rehearsing your presentation. You'll make sure that you cover every key benefit and give extra time and attention to those features and benefits of particular importance to your prospective client.

And because you've been told that every presenter will be given exactly 90 minutes, you'll take pains to see that you have a tightly organized presentation, and each point quickly and smoothly transitions to the next.

Make the effort to make your copy flow.

Here's my point: if you want your direct mail program to be successful, you'll be sure to put forth the same effort on every sales letter you write. (After all, it well may have been a sales letter that triggered your prospective client's initial inquiry and ultimately led to the Big Presentation.)

Just as in the Big Presentation, you should pay careful attention to ensure that each point in your sales letter quickly and smoothly transitions to the next. A sales letter that has an easy and natural flow to it is more likely to be read and acted on.

Giving the thoughts and ideas expressed in your letter a smooth and easy flow may be as simple as beginning a sentence with “and” or “so.” Here's an example from my own files:

Ouch! Renewing your property lease in a tight market can be painful. And let's face it, we both know that's the type of market we're in right now.

So what do you do?

Do you just take a deep breath, take out your pen and “re-up” at higher rates? Maybe. And maybe not. But one thing's for sure…

Notice how the ideas in each sentence and sentence fragment were logically connected to one another—and how smoothly and easily thoughts flow from one paragraph to the next?

In addition to single word transitions such as “so” and “and,” there are a number of excellent transitional phrases that can be used effectively. A couple of my favorites are “what's more” and “most important.” These phrases can be of great help to you when you want to transition from benefit to benefit.

Here's an example of both, again, from my own files:

Years of experience have brought us proficiency, skill, expertise—or as you and I might call it—just “plain ol' smarts.” The “smarts” that enables us to know what questions to ask, and after listening carefully to your answers, quickly determine exactly how bar coding technology can benefit your company.

What's more, in short order, we can give you a good idea of how much of an investment your system will require. As well as how fast—and how substantial—your payback will be. (Most bar code systems pay for themselves in a year or less.)

Most important, when you deal with the experts at BCI…

These are other excellent transitional phrases:

  • Best of all… 
  • What does this mean for you? 
  • That's why… 
  • The result? 
  • That's where _______ fits in. 
  • So remember… 
  • And that's not all! 
  • These are just a few of the… 
  • But there's even more

Put these tips and pointers to work, and your “presentations on paper” are sure to have a smooth and easy flow that keeps your prospects reading, and ultimately pays off for you in more profitable results.

Continue reading "How to Write a Smooth Sales Letter for Results" ... Read the full article

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image of Ernest Nicastro

Ernest Nicastro is an award-winning B-to-B freelance copywriter who is also equally adept at crafting B-to-C content. For more information, and to review samples of his work, visit Positive Response.

LinkedIn: Ernest Nicastro

Twitter: @enicastro