What to Do When a Sales Letter Fatigues

Most copywriters and direct response business owners know that even the best of sales letters will fatigue over time. The market gets tired of seeing it… or times change such that the old copy is no longer as effective as it once was.

This recently happened to a letter I had written for a client. Conversions were falling, sales were slowing. What to do?

Rather than test a new headline or lead or guarantee — I simply wrote a new letter.

Sometimes you can’t revive a dying sales letter; you just have to let it die.

But before passing the old letter on to the “sales copy morgue,” I set up an A/B split-test to make sure the new letter and sales process were going to beat the old one.

And so far, the test results haven’t disappointed me.

First, a little background:

  1. Most traffic comes from Google Adwords, although there’s some organic traffic.
  2. The product sells for $97 up front plus overnight shipping, then $97 a month.

The old sales letter is converting at 0.31% — that’s one third of one percentage point. Not good.

But the new sales letter is converting at 1.89%, which is…

A 509% Increase in Conversion Rate!

The only question now is, will the results hold for the remainder of the test?

I certainly hope so.

And if the old letter picks up a little, or the new letter slows down a little, I’ll still be happy with a 300% increase in conversion rate. ;-)

Now, here’s something you should know: I was kinda scared to put up this new letter because it’s a bit different from most of the work I’ve done in the past.

In fact, it takes TWO pages to make the sale instead of just one (not counting the order check-out pages). The average direct response copywriter might look at the page and think, “That’s not direct response!”

But it is.

The lesson here is this:

Be Willing to Experiment with New Approaches

And certainly be willing to experiment with new tested approaches.

The approach I used for my client’s new sales letter probably wasn’t as risky as I’ve lead you to believe.

It was an approach I’d gotten from reading Terry  Dean’s Monthly Mentor Newsletter. And he got the tip from Glenn Livingston, the guy who runs the only PPC ad campaign management company endorsed by Perry Marshall, Howie Jacobson, and a host of other trustworthy experts.

Hint: When you listen to the right people, and apply the right strategies at the right time, things just work.

But the guy who keeps doing what he’s always done is probably going to find that his results decrease over time.

Changes happen — both in the market at large and in your market specifically. So be bold. Try new approaches. Many times, your creative effort will pay off big.

-Ryan M. Healy

Ryan M. Healy

Ryan Healy is a financial copywriter and the author of Speed Writing for Nonfiction Writers. Since 2002, he has worked with scores of clients, including Agora Financial, Lombardi Publishing, and Contrarian Profits. He writes a popular blog about copywriting, advertising, and business growth, has been featured in publications like Feed Front magazine, and has been published on sites like WordStream.com, SmallBizClub.com, and MarketingForSuccess.com.

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