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How to Attract—And Keep—the Interest of The Readers of Your Sales Letters

By Rich Silver

Putting news, stories, or human interest into your ads and sales letters is an excellent way to get people to read your advertising. Just be certain that what you write is true.

A good way to attract and capture the attention of readers is to begin the story in the headline of the ad. But make sure that the story behind the headline is told in the sales letter. You don’t want people reading your ad because they got interested from the headline…and then not get the “payoff” in the letter.

For example, have you ever seen those ad headlines that say SEX? Then you start reading the ad and it says, “Now that I’ve got your attention, blah blah blah…” and the ad has nothing to do with sex but is about some widget they’re trying to sell. Don’t ever do that in your advertising.

If you don’t follow through with the information from the headline to the letter, people will feel cheated…and they’ll be really ticked off. The consequences? Your letter goes in the trash, you’ve lost a customer, and your company name is tarnished.

Below is an example of a sales letter I wrote that illustrates the power of a good story to attract attention…and get people to start reading.

Anyone who gambles or plays blackjack and sees this headline is going to be so intrigued they’ll be forced to start reading. And once they start reading they are hammered with bullets that contain benefits they’ll want to know. And then the reader is hooked.

“Amazing Lost Blackjack Manuscripts of a Gambling Genius Discovered Safely Hidden in
Rat Infested Shack”

The mysterious circumstances surrounding the death of one of North America’s top blackjack players became even more mysterious recently when…the books he was writing on his years of gambling (revealing all his tricks and secrets for making a fortune)…were discovered in an old run down shack in rural Oregon.

Dear Friend,

If you play blackjack—even if it’s just a few times a year—this will be the most important letter you read this year.

Here’s what you’re going to learn that could make you a lot of money…quicker and easier than you can imagine.

  • How to play blackjack just a few times a year…and almost always go home a winner…Page 7
  • How to get free hotel rooms and other comps—even if you’re a small time player…Page 23
  • Three books you must read (and it’s easy reading) if you want to make at least $100,000 a year playing blackjack…Page 30
  • The story of how this ex-carpenter became a gambling genius…and ended up making so much money he literally had to stuff it in the walls of his home…Page 13
  • 10 suggestions for playing with partners…and immediately doubling your winning cash flow…Page 56
  • How to cut the casinos edge to almost zero—without counting cards…Page 37
  • The two most critical points you must know to consistently play winning blackjack…Page 19
  • When…and why…you should play blackjack in Canada…Page 77
  • What never to do when you sit down at a blackjack table…Page 63
  • Seven little known secrets for playing blackjack on riverboats and in Native American casinos…Page 73
  • Why you should start taking acting lessons right away if you want to be a million dollar player…Page 69

The important thing to realize about writing advertising is that you must not bore people. They are bombarded with messages every day and you have to find a way to cut through the clutter. Making your sales letters interesting—by telling a story—is one of the best ways to do that.

© 2009 Crow Moon Marketing

Rich Silver is a copywriter who specializes in writing direct mail packages and sales letters (print and e-mail). He has worked with some of the top direct marketers in the world.

Lorie Drozdenko is a graphic designer and illustrator, specializing in catalog, direct mail, and web site design.

You can view their Web site at

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