This guest post comes from Courtney Johnston. Courtney is the founder and Chief Copywriter at The Rule Breaker’s Club. She teaches women entrepreneurs how to write amazing sales pages and even performs “Sales Page CPR”. In her free course, The Rainbow of Sales, you can learn her unique approach to selling.
The work I do has a rather challenging obstacle: It makes my clients want to vomit.
As you can imagine, this puts me in a pretty sticky predicament!
My clients want to vomit because I make them do something that they procrastinate, put off, and resist.
What is this nauseating task, you ask?
I teach entrepreneurs how to write sales pages. Yes, sales pages — the page on your website that convinces people that they should work with you.
(Feeling nauseous yet? Keep reading!)
Every day, I work with female entrepreneurs like you who run small creative businesses. My job is to help them craft the right language to make their offers irresistible to their target markets.
These amazingly talented women are some of the most ambitious humans I’ve ever encountered. They’ve launched companies, quit their jobs, raise kids, travel the world, and more.
However, writing sales pages is their achilles heel!
After a couple of years working as a sales page copywriter, I’ve learned one thing:
Women entrepreneurs love what they do, but hate having to sell it.
That might come off as a really generalized, bold and slightly sexist statement. In my experience, however, it’s also really freaking true. (Remember the nausea?)
If you’ve ever tried to give an “elevator pitch” or close a deal, you know how terrifying it can be to sell. Most of us want to write a sales page about as much as we want to scrub a toilet.
And it’s not because we’re “bad” at selling. Far from it! Rather, the amazing women I work with are just like you. They want to help people, not push them with manipulative sales tactics.
We procrastinate writing sales pages because it feels hard and we’re not sure how to do it without compromising our soul.
What if I told you that I can teach you a really fun, rainbow-infused way of writing an amazing sales page (or work-with-me page) for your website?
Yes, really! You can write a sales page that:
- Feels like having a cozy sit down chat with a good friend.
- Completely resonates with your readers, making them feel heard, seen, and understood.
- Makes your target clients think, “How did she get inside my head?!”
- Converts prospects into clients like gangbusters.
Are you in? I promise it will be super fun. (And I’m dead serious about the rainbows).
Grab your best pen and hit “play” on some dance music.
Here are the 5 steps you must take to write an irresistible sales page:
SALES PAGE STEP 1: SHOW THEM YOU GET THE PROBLEM
First off, your sales page needs a powerful opening.
I once read that 80% of the emotional connection is made in the first 20% of the copy. In my experience, this is totally true!
So how on earth do you make this all-important emotional connection?
The answer might surprise you: You have to become a mind reader.
Yes, really! It’s actually not that hard to read your target client’s mind. All you need to do is use the exact language that they are using when they think about (or talk about) their current situation.
To show your reader that you understand how they feel, answer the following questions:
What’s your target client’s core frustration? In other words, what’s the problem that your product or service will fix?
Writing prompt for Step 1:
- Are you sick of ________________________?
- Psst! You can get a whole slew of formulas for this opening section in my free guide, “How to Write a Catchy Sales Page Headline”.
SALES PAGE STEP 2: SHOW THEM YOU’VE GOT THE SOLUTION
Congratulations! You’ve got their attention. Now how do you get them to keep reading?
One of the best ways to keep people’s attention on a sales page, in a presentation, or any piece of communication is to vacillate between the “high” and the “low.”
In the first section, you addressed the “low” and it’s time to take them high and show them what’s possible (once they use your product).
If you can paint a picture for the reader of what their life will look like once they’ve used your offer, they’ll be able to see that you understand not only what they’re struggling with right now, but what they desire most.
What will someone be able to feel, see, do once they’ve solved the problem from step one? How will their life look different? What will they be able to do / be / or have now?
Writing prompt for Step 2:
- Imagine what life will look like when…
- What if you could be / do / have…
SALES PAGE STEP 3: PAINT A PICTURE OF THE EXPERIENCE
Whew! Nice work.
Now that the reader is totally on the edge of their seat, it’s time to show them that you’ve got exactly what they need to get what they want. You’re going to position your offer as the bridge between the two.
When you share the details of your offer, you absolutely must paint a picture of what the experience will look like from start to finish.
It’s often difficult to get outside of your own head and know what details you should share about your product or service. The best way to understand what you need to share is to “step into your client’s shoes.”
Close your eyes and pretend that you are one of your new clients. Then, answer the following question:
What is the step-by-step experience of using your offer from start to finish?
Writing prompt for Step 3:
- List all of the “touch points” of your product or service. In other words, what’s the experience like from start to finish from the client’s point of view?
SALES PAGE STEP 4: TELL THEM THE PRICE
Almost every entrepreneur I work with freaks out when it comes to stating the price on their sales pages.
In my opinion, there are very few cases when it’s appropriate to leave the price off of a sales page (highly, highly, HIGHLY customized services or a Tesla, for example). As a rule of thumb, it’s a good idea to include the price.
How do you state the price of your offer without people clicking away?
The good news: At this point on your sales page, you’ve already sold the offer. In sections 1-2 you aroused desire. In section 3 you painted a word picture of what the experience will look like.
There are two main ways you can introduce the price of your offer:
#1 Simple Price –
Easy peasy! If your offer has one price option, you can introduce the price by stating “Your investment for this service is $X”.
#2 Multiple Pricing Options –
If you have a multi-tiered offer, the best way to introduce the price is with a table. This way, you can show each option side by side, state what’s included in each option, and the price.
Writing prompt for Step 4:
- What’s the price of your offer?
- Have multiple tiers? Create a table that outlines what’s included in each tier.
SALES PAGE STEP 5: MAKE IT EASY TO SAY “YES!”
Don’t forget: The entire purpose of a sales page is to get someone to take action.
Once you’ve given the details of your offer and stated the price, it’s time to give your reader an opportunity to say YES. Specifically, you want them to click your “Call to Action” button.
For service-based businesses, I always suggest using an application form or questionnaire as a “call to action”. This way, you can qualify leads to make sure they’re a perfect, Goldilocks fit for your service.
For products, a button that says “Enroll Now” or “Get my copy!” is a great option. (Whatever you do, steer clear from the typical “Buy Now” button which reinforces what the person is giving rather than what they’re getting).
Writing prompt for Section 5:
- What action do you want people to take once they’ve read your page?
Writing sales page copy doesn’t have to be so hard.
Having a framework helps, but ….Writing a sales page is more fun when you remember why you created an offer in the 1st place. Click To Tweet
Your future clients are depending on you to inspire and uplift them. And that’s exactly the kind of energy you want to bring to your sales page.
P.S. The cheap DIY writing retreat I sweaaaaar by
I emailed this question to Sarah and she said maybe post it here so we could hear your thoughts on it:
Is this formula now just over-done? Particularly the back-and-forth between problem, solution and the old wording like “are you sick of…” I haven’t really felt like this formula produces the nice chatting atmosphere which was mentioned.
It can be exciting but not so much when people see this formula so much it’s dull and they are naturally skeptical of it. Well, I am anyway. I really appreciate this wonderful idea in my inbox, I just don’t know if it’s as relevant as it was a year or two ago.
I have another thought to add: these pages I think are very effective for those people who are drawn in because they want more business – so, business to business style, they think, oh great, this course sounds amazing, and I’ll replicate this with the same success for my potential customers. But say they are an architect, well, their customers have a different agenda, they don’t want to be ‘sold’ to… Um, hard to express this.. I’m sort of angling at, what works for talking to businesses who want customers, can’t necessarily be turned around and used by those businesses who want to connect with people, because the concepts and whole motivation is different. This is what I have seen in my experience working with clients and just around the web. Sorry it’s hard to express, I hope you understand a bit!
I’d love to know what you think anyway 🙂
Thank you for the wonderful post.
This is the literal answer from the universe to my question about writing sales pages the other day. Specifically, I was like “I can’t do this shit, I need something to help me write better sales pages and emails.” At first I thought my inability to sell my own awesome product had something to do with ‘not deserving’ to sell my own awesome products to begin with, but now that I’m moving past all that, it really just comes down to getting the writing out, and I’ve struggled with it so much the past month! I think also it has to do with me getting clear about the benefits of my product, and what my buyers’ ‘after’ picture will look like , so to speak. I always have this idea of what my product will do to help people in my head, but getting it out is like pulling teeth! I’m SUPER happy to have stumbled on this post because I’ve actually already implement a lot of the stuff you mentioned, and I’m glad I’m on the right track. Thank you so much for writing this out and including the prompts, I’m going to get to work! 🙂
So glad it was helpful, Monique!
I’ve read this formula many times and I always have the same problem with it.
What I want to sell is my stories. I write fiction, so I don’t offer any solution. I don’t have a service to offer, I don’t solve people’s problems. I just offer a pastime which people definitelly don’t need, though they might choose to get.
I feel this is a completely different approach to the selling page and I can never figure out how I can do this.
As Lara stated above, it is more about connecting than selling and I’m really not sure this formula works in this direction.
But of course I might be wrong. If I am, I’d love to hear how it can work for me too.