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How To Write A High Converting Video Sales Letter (VSL) From Scratch

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You’ve heard me say it before, copy is queen and and content is king…

But no matter what form of online marketing you’re conducting…

It’s VIDEO that reigns supreme. 

And in this blog, I’m going to teach you how to write one of the most effective sales tools there is… Video Sales Letters

Hey Posse! What’s up? It’s Alex. 

Coming to you this week with a tutorial that has been highly, highly… HIGHLY requested from the Posse for a loooong time. 

How to write video scripts. 

But before we get into all of that, if you’re new to the crew – welcome!

My blog is your one-stop shop for all things copywriting, digital marketing, content marketing, and entrepreneurship. If you’d like to learn more about that, go ahead and subscribe to my newsletter! 

Now, it’s no secret that video has been rising in popularity over the years. 

We’re immersed in video content all day long, thanks to things like: TikTok, Instagram Reels, Facebook Shorts, and of course the king of video – YouTube

But video isn’t just something we humans like to consume for education and entertainment…

It’s also something we like to consume when it comes to our buying decisions. And here are some stats to prove it…

When asked how they’d most like to learn about a product or service:

  • 73% of people said they’d prefer to watch a short video. Compared to just 11% who’d rather read a text-based article, website or post.
  • ​​88% of people say that they’ve been convinced to buy a product or service by watching a brand’s video.

Thanks to statistics like that, business owners of all sizes – and in all niches – have really started to take notice and are beginning to incorporate more video into their own marketing efforts…

Which is great news if you’re a copywriter! 

Because as consumers continue to demand more video content from their favorite brands, more and more businesses will need help creating them.

But before you get all gung-ho and add “video writing” to your list of services, you better get familiar with the different types of video scripts. 

Because there are a TON of ways that you can utilize video to sell your products and services, such as:

  • Video ads
  • Video case studies
  • Welcome videos
  • Thank you videos
  • Sales videos
  • Short promo videos
  • Long webinars

And everything in between!

Basically, anything you WRITE online could also be said in a video. And the way in which you will write and structure each type of video script WILL be slightly different, depending on its purpose and context.  

The particular form of video script writing that we’ll be focusing on in today’s tutorial is…

A VSL – or video sales letter! 

Now for those of you who don’t know, a VSL is exactly what it sounds like… 

What is a VSL?

A VSL, or Video Sales Letter, is designed to persuade and convert an audience, but in video format instead of in a written format. A good VSL will still follow the same general flow of a written offer, and will still include many of the same elements. 

But there are some very KEY differences and I’ll cover those in this blog.

So let’s dive in…

Here are 5 steps to writing a high-converting VSL from scratchStarting with step #1…

#1 – Where & How Is It Being Used? 

Before you get started on the actual writing. You need to consider the context and placement of your video sales letter.

  • Is it going to be a stand-alone VSL? Something that needs to do ALL of the selling by itself?
  • Or will it act as a supplementary support to written copy?
  • Is it an upsell, downsell, or primary offer?
  • How is your audience finding the VSL? Is it via email, social, paid ads, or affiliate traffic?
  • How aware is the audience of your product or brand? Is this the first time they are finding you or have they heard of you before?

Just like a written sales letter, all of this context around your audience and campaign is extremely important to have before you start writing so you know what the user is experiencing on the page and how long your VSL should be…

And this seems to be the #1 question every wants to know when writing a VSL…

How long should a VSL be?

And the answer is it really depends on a variety of factors…

Like how complex your offer is, how aware your audience is, how expensive your product is, and what the end goal is. For example: if you’re just trying to sell a $7 product, then you probably don’t need a 20-minute video…

But if you’re selling a $5,000 service, then you’re going to need some more time to persuade a person to make that purchase. 

But no matter what – always follow “the golden rule” of copywriting…

It should be as long as it needs to be to get your point across. No longer. No shorter. 

But – this leads me to the first key difference between a written and video sales letter.

In a written sales letter, people can scroll ahead, they can skim and explore the page, they can jump to the price and click around. They cannot do this with a stand-alone VSL. They either watch it, or they leave so you don’t want to risk losing their attention for even a split second. 

Which brings me to #2…

#2 – What’s The Core Problem & Benefit?

The very first thing you need to do in your VSL is capture the attention of your ideal client – and the faster, the better…

This is the second key difference between a written and video sales letter. In a written sales letter the headlines hold A LOT of weight, because they decide if the reader continues to read. They are written in a way to grab attention VISUALLY…

In a VSL though, it’s the first sentence or opening line of your video that holds all the weight and it needs to grab attention in a whole other way. And it needs to be done conversationally, as if you’re speaking to your customer.

Of course, there are many ways to do this, but one of the most effective is to clearly call out your audience’s core problem. 

You can do this by leading in with a really compelling story…

Or by asking a question you already know the answer to… 

Each one of those questions is, of course, completely rhetorical. 

But they serve as a great way to open your VSL and get straight to the primary problem that your audience is facing…

This helps them immediately self-select and think – yes! I need to pay attention to this!

Now another way you could accomplish this same thing is simply calling out the biggest benefit…

So for example:

  • If you want to ignite your copywriting business in just 8 weeks…
  • “If you want to learn the highly-sought after copywriting skills and marketing secrets that businesses are looking for right now…”
  • If you want to have a complete portfolio that potential clients find absolutely irresistible…
  • “If you want to turn your passion for writing into a real life business…

You get the point. And you can see how using these “if you” statements help communicate CLEARLY who I’m talking to and who this offer is for…

Now next up you want to pivot to…

#3 – What’s The Solution?

Alright, so you’ve called out the audience, captured their attention, helped them self-select, and hooked them into listening to what you have to say…

The next thing you need to do is let them know that there is, in fact, a solution to the problem (or problems) that you just called them out on. 

So this is where you tell them: “Hey, I can help and here’s HOW I can help.

This is where you’ll give a rundown of your offer and specifically how you/your product/your service can solve the big problem that they’re facing. This is also a great time to weave in a story or case study! This brings us to the next key difference between a written and video sales letter…

Unlike case studies or testimonials written on a sales page, in a VSL you are TELLING your customers’ stories for them. So it needs to be more conversational and free-flowing.

And you need to tell the stories in a way that continually opens loops and creates interest to keep them listening as you introduce your product or service.

Which brings us to the next step…

#4 – What’s The Big Deal?

Just like in a written sales letter, in a VSL you need to go DEEPER than just the left-brain “Here’s your problem and here’s how I can help” type of stuff. If you want to compel your audience to buy then you need to explain why YOUR solution is THE BEST solution. 

So this means talking about your USP (unique selling proposition)…

It means talking about the BENEFITS of your solution (not the features)…

It means showcasing your authority and WHY you’re the person they should buy from…

But, that leads me to the next key difference between a written and video sales letter. In a written sales letter, you might list out benefit bullets one by one…

You might include an authority bio written in third-person about yourself or whoever created the product or service. You might list out every single feature, module and service along with it’s value…

In a video sales letter, this all has to be done, but it has to be done VERBALLY. Which means you need to cut the fluff and make sure the copy flows very conversationally…

So make sure the script is structured in an easy-to-read format and add in natural pauses and transitions.

And all good VSLs (or ANY good copy for that matter) must answer the question… 

#5 – What’s The Next Step?

After you get your prospects on board with how your product or service will make them FEEL and what their life could be like AFTER buying, you then want to circle back a little bit…

This is where you address any objections, remove the risks, throw in any last-minute bonuses, and of course… 

You’ll wrap it all up at the end with ONE very clear and specific CTA  – such as clicking the link below to purchase, submitting a form, booking a call, etc.

BUT that brings me to the LAST key difference between a written and video sales letter…

In a written sales letter, you may have one or two buy buttons at the bottom of the page, because anyone who is looking to purchase just has to quickly scroll down to find it when they are ready.

In a VSL, you definitely do not want to wait until the very end to drop your first CTA—because most people will not make it that far. Make sure you’re dropping verbal calls to action multiple times through the script, starting immediately after you first introduce the product and offer. 

And there you have it – the 5-step formula for writing a high-converting VSL and the key differences from writing a written sales letter! 

I hope you found this blog helpful. If you want to see more tutorials on VSLs and other forms of video script writing, leave a comment below and let me know!

Until next time, I’m Alex. Ciao for now! 

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