Top 10 Video Sales Letter Mistakes That Are Killing Your Sales

By: Mike Steup | 20 Year Digital Marketing Expert

You Might Not Even Know You're Making These 10 Mistakes, But Each One Is Costing You More Money Than You Can Imagine...

10 Video Sales Letter Mistakes That Are Killing Your Sales

Video sales letters can work wonders for your conversions if you really know what you’re doing, or they can kill your sales if you don’t.

Below we are going to dive right in to the exact pitfalls that you must avoid if you want your video sales letter to be a raving success.

So, without further ado, here are the Top 10 Video Sales Letter Mistakes people most often make when writing and producing their VSLs . . .

1. Know Who You’re Speaking To, Not At

Let me explain this just a bit.

When you’re having a conversation with someone, you’re speaking to or with them. To the contrary, when you’re lecturing someone you’re speaking at them.

Be sure to keep your tone conversational. No one likes to be lectured about how bad they are, or something they did wrong.

However, people love it when you empathize with them, get on their side and help them to throw rocks at the enemy.

Now you’ve become allies, formed a united front and are taking on the problem together. You’re helping them find a solution.

Who Are You Speaking To?

Before you can have a conversation with them, you must identify your ideal customer. You can’t possibly speak to everyone at once. And the tighter you can narrow your field the better and more direct the conversation will be.

Think of it this way. Let’s say that you’re selling high heeled shoes. You now know that you should cut out roughly 50% of the population and speak directly to women.

The same could be said if you were selling a product traditionally purchased by men, you’d cut out the female aspects of your speech.

But, it goes way deeper than that.

Who is your perfect customer?

What gender are they or are they mixed (men and women)?

Where do they typically live, are they city dwellers or farm folk? Most people with New York City addresses don’t buy farm equipment.

How old are they in your ideal age range?

What do they do for a living and how much do they make?

Who are their friends? Show me your top 5 friends and I’ll show you who you are.

Where do they vacation, what do they do with their friends during their time off?

There are more aspects that you can drill deeper into, but, you get the point. You must know who you’re talking to. You can learn more about how to identify and talk to your ideal market here.

If you don’t, your VSL or even a text sales letter is going to fail.

2. You Must Thoroughly Research Your Niches Biggest Problems

Let’s just say this as simply as it can be said.

In most cases your products job is to solve a problem. How can you solve a problem if you don’t even know what it is?

Yes, if you’re at the stage of writing the sales letter, typically the product has already been developed. So, one would presume that you already know what problem it solves.

Not so fast!

Do you know why so many video sales letters miss the mark and don’t convert?

It’s because they really don’t know, or at least don’t speak of the problem their product solves.

So, really dive deep into it to find the real problem - not the surface problem - and then clearly demonstrate just how your product solves this and no one else’s product does. At least not quite the way yours does.

3. You Have To Feel Their Pain

This is an absolute must. You have to know the problem you solve so that you can know the pain not having your product causes.

You need to feel it right down to your bones, feel the anguish, the sorrow and sadness.

Then empathize with them like there is no tomorrow while you twist the proverbial knife deeper and deeper into that pain, until you bring it all out in the open.

Once you get them to realize how bad their life is without your solution, you’ve just won over half of the sales battle.

4. Now You Take Them To New Heights

You see, most copywriters, if they ever even do 10% of what we spoke of above, forget to take them out of that pain and let their spirits soar.

You do this by now taking away all of their pain and replacing it with sheer joy.

You show them how only your product will eliminate their problem and thereby their pain.

Not only that, but how it will lift them to new places that they dared not even imagined before.

Do that, and I can guarantee you one thing, the price is no longer the objection.

5. Here’s One of My Biggest Pet Peeve’s

This just blows me away.

You see a decent video sales letter and then they get to the point where they need to ask for the order and they fall apart.

I’ve seen this time and time again.

They did several things right in the letter, then at the end they get cold feet and forget to tell them what to do next.

The essence of a sales letter in any format is: Here’s what I’ve got. Here’s what it’s going to do for you. And here’s what I want you to do next.

So many letters forget that last piece that it drives me nuts.

Don’t be that guy. When the time comes, ask for the dang order.

6. You’re Not Writing Gone With The Wind, Get To The Point

Get to the point, don’t be too long winded and don’t make your VSL so long that they are wondering if there will be a sequel.

This is a huge problem.

Just go look at the forums. You see all kinds of people up there complaining about how the video sales letter was so long they took their kids to school, came back and it was still going.

Listen up, people can’t stand you wasting their time.

Not only that, but their social media addiction has made it so that if you don’t give them instant gratification they’re out of there.

The point is, get to the point.

The problem started from all the copywriters knowing that long copy converts better than short sales letters, so they thought it would work that way with video sales letters too, but it doesn’t.

You see, with a long copy text sales letter people scroll through and look at the sub-headlines and the juicy pieces they want to see.

They can go through the text letter as fast or as slow as they want.

But with a VSL, they have to sit there forever, like it or not, bored out of their minds while you babble on about things they couldn’t care less about.

So, in a VSL, stay on point, grind your points, but stay on them.

Don’t make it a movie, tell them everything they need to know, but nothing more than that and you’d do much, much better.

7. Don’t Think That You Have to be Steven Spielberg

This is something that so many people get stressed out about and there is no reason to worry about it at all.

You start thinking that you have to produce Hollywood style graphics and special effects, or no one will like your video. Well, nothing could be farther from the truth.

If you remember the Blair Witch Project; they only had a budget of $60,000.

While that may seem like a load of cash compared to your budget, you have to remember we are talking about a Hollywood movie here where budgets can exceed $100 million.

Sixty-grand is squat in tinsel town. The actor’s agent’s commissions are bigger than that per movie.

Well, that low budget film went on to earn 248.6 million USD!

It was at that time the single largest return on investment film ever produced.

They filmed it with home video equipment and virtually no special effects at all.

Simple Videos Convert Better

Here’s the secret to having your simple, virtually no budget VSL convert like mad.
Focus on the message, not the graphics.

It all goes back to this . . . what do you have that is so valuable that their money seems meaningless by comparison?

What can it do for them?

What are their core benefits?

Focus on that message and you don’t have to worry about big budget graphics.

Have you ever seen a white board video?

You know the ones.

The guy comes on yacking it up about some widget you need, or your life will implode as you know it.

Then you see a hand glide across the white background drawing the words, characters and scenes or sometimes the hand just places them there.

Well, guess what?

Several of those that were done by great copywriters have gone on to become million-dollar letters.

That is, they made one million dollars in sales or more over their lifetimes.

They are made with a piece of software costing under $100 and can sell more of your product than you might have dreamed of.

So, what’s the big lesson here?

Yes, sure, you must have some graphics, but they can be simple and neat, there is no need to compete with the Hollywood elite.

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