Length of Sales Page Inversely Related to IQ

August 5, 2008


People often ask me how long their sales page should be. The answer — It depends on the intelligence level of your target audience.

There is no ideal sales page length or word count, but if you’re trying to push something cheesy or borderline complete waste of money, you’d better err of the side of too long.

In this case, you’re pitching to imbeciles (For those reading this right now), and these people love them some text.

If you’re drafting an online sales letter, here’s a foolproof chart to assist your decision.

Know your audience

The lengthy internet sales letter model was drafted by someone who found the Telecommunications Act of 1996 extremely enthralling. This guy looked at the document and said, “Hey, throw in a couple completely fabricated testimonials, and I’m sold!”

I’m certainly not saying long copy doesn’t convert because it does. Brian Clark (who doesn’t suck at websites) over at Copyblogger recently announced the death of the long sales letter.

But I disagree. As long as there are people who just can’t get enough multi-colored text, over-hyped headlines and phony handwritten signatures, there will be people employing these tactics.

I don’t blame the creator of a long sales letter. I blame those who fall for it.

You can find a whole slew of these salespages over at ClickBank. I just looked at the current most popular product and corresponding sales page. I’d link to it here, but I don’t want to give them more traffic.

Word Count: 10,480. Who writes these things, Leo Tolstoy?

I had to scroll so much, my pointer finger cramped.

Actually read through one of these things from start to finish, and you shouldn’t buy the product — you should be awarded a medal.

I went straight to the source to discover where people asking how long their sales letter should be are getting their answers. Apparently, a sales letter should be “as long as it takes to tell your story or showcase the benefits of your product.”

Sorry, but if it takes more than 10,000 words to tell your story or tout your product, it’s probably not one worth sharing in the first place.

The only thing worse than a long sales letter? A long sales letter about writing long sales letters (e.g., Link)


6 Responses to “Length of Sales Page Inversely Related to IQ”

  1. Brian Davis on September 25th, 2009 2:05 pm

    I’m definitely with you on this one, long sales pages or squeeze pages as the gurus like to call it, suck.
    I never read through the whole dang thing anymore because they all say about the same thing with maybe slightly different wording. Instead I scroll down to the bottom in an often vain search to find out just how much they want to hit me up for. It is surprisingly hard to find that out. However if you read closely enough they’re trying to get you to sign up for automatic billing every month for the chance to shove even more internet marketing BS in your face.
    Blog on brother

  2. Poster on December 28th, 2009 5:42 am

    jezz … all the how-to-pick-up-a-girl sales letters are at least 20000 words … omg … think of the consequences ….

  3. Generic_Guy on January 2nd, 2010 9:53 am

    I just ran the make-sales-letter sales letter through UNIX’s ‘wc’ command. The result? 3833 words.
    And they think that the people they’re selling the product to don’t have enough time to make a sales letter, but enough time to read a way-too-long one?

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