10 Steps to a Profit-Pounding Sales Sheet

Sales data sheets, sell sheets or sales sheets – no matter what you call them, they can be powerful influencers when it comes to sales and marketing.  Sales sheets are used by both B2B and B2C companies to demonstrate product and service features and benefits, and to motivate customers to take the next step in the purchasing process.  The following offers a 10-step process to write, design and print winning sales sheets.

1. Set goals:  What is the No. 1 goal you want your sales sheet to accomplish?  Simply saying “make sales” is too general.  Be specific about the action you want customers to take, which could be visiting a website, calling a phone number, filling out a form or placing an immediate order with you.

2. List necessary data:  What data will help you achieve your goal?  Start by listing everything you might want to include about your product:  features, benefits, branding, testimonials, photos, comparison charts or graphs, pricing, awards, ratings, and customer action.  Then remove anything that will not contribute to your end goal.  Everything else stays.

10 Steps to a Profit Pounding Sales Sheet image sales sheet10 Steps to a Profit Pounding Sales Sheet

Monster.com sales sheet design by Jennifer Greiner

3. Develop 

  • your offer:  Not every sales sheet includes an offer, but you can without doubt increase your response and overall ROI by including a time-limited offer.  Make it good enough to motivate customers to buy now, but leave plenty of room for profits.

4. Break 

  • the information up:  Nothing’s worse than a sales sheet with paragraph after paragraph of text.  It’s boring, uninspired and a turn-off for customers.  Instead, break up your information into smaller, more manageable chunks.  Decide what information goes together, and brainstorm succinct yet powerful ways to present that data.

5. Write your sales sheet copy:  Your sales sheet should have a headline, tagline, body copy, bulleted features and benefits, photo and/or comparison chart captions, an offer, and a compelling call to action.  If you have awards, ratings or testimonials, write them, too.  Write everything out, focusing on your unique selling point.  You want to sell based on your USP first, so customers are instantly attracted to your message and so your other benefits reinforce why they should buy from you now.

6. Let it simmer:  Resist the urge to put your sales sheet copy to rest after the first draft.  Let it simmer for a day or two, then revisit it to make sure it’s as powerful as it can possible be.  In most cases, you’ll make several edits that make your copy more succinct, yet more compelling.

7. Design Your Sales Sheet: Your sales sheet design should work hand-in-hand with your copy to direct readers’ eyes to the most important information.  A bold headline and tagline that reveal your key benefit and unique selling point will help attract attention.  Large photos and comparative charts, as well as any potential diagrams, will help customers better understand your product and generate desire.  Make sure your call to action is bold and that customers know precisely what to do next to take advantage of it.

8. Revise, revise, revise:  Once your copy and design are melded into one, let it simmer again for a day or two, then do your final revisions.  In all likelihood you’ll identify ways to make your sales sheet more compelling.  It’s a good idea to get opinions from others at this point as well.

9. Print your sales sheet:  Print your sales sheets on premium paper stocks to lend the best impression on your customers.  Good choices include 100 lb. gloss text with either UV or AQ coating.

10. Test, track and tweak:  Like other marketing mediums, sales sheet copy and design has a major influence on your ROI.  Test different versions of your sales sheets against one another to determine which yields the best response.  Doing so means you will be able to quickly design predictable winners in the future.

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