Which Is Better: Long-Form Or Short-Form Sales Letters?

Earlier this year, I wrote a sales letter for a client that was about 10-12 pages long…

Long story short – it was too long. At least for what he was trying to sell, which was a two-month call-in service for his students.

It didn’t really dawn on me until afterward that he really didn’t need to go in a FULL detailed story or have to re-educate his students on why they should buy his program. He could’ve just kept it plain and simple.

Now don’t get me wrong, I still feel the long-form sales letter could’ve still been effective. But it was enough to get me thinking:

Which is better to use? Long-form or short-form sales letters?

I’m sure I’m not the only copywriter who’s faced this dilemma. But to help you guys out, I think I’ve come up with a better way to determine when which style is necessary.

Like both styles? Learn about split-testing in the blog: The Joys Of A/B Split-Testing.

<h4>Let’s Break It Down: Long-Form Sales Letters</h4>
So when you’re writing a LONG-form sales letter you’re writing, really, to educate about the product and demonstrate on a deeper level that you understand your client.

And if you’re writing about a product or service with the long-form, it’s probably because there’s A LOT of info about the product.

Long-Form is great for:

  • High-Ticketed Items
  • Information Products with a ton of information
  • Products that require monthly payments
  • Expensive Services
  • Video Sales Letter Scripts

I’m sure there are other types of products that a long-form sales letter would work great for, but at the moment, these products are what I’ve written them for so far.

Learn the difference between copy and content in the blog: The Difference Between Copywriting & Content Writing.

<h4>Short-Form Sales Letters</h4>
Short-form sales letters are a little different…

I’ve noticed that when this style of a sales letter is written, it’s usually for something that’s offered for free.

In fact, short-form sales letters use Russell Brunson’s Who, What, Why & How method, which helps you get the main point across in a short amount of time.

So usually, Short-Form is great for:

  • Giveaway Items
  • Landing Pages
  • PDFs and Ebooks
  • Templates
  • Cheat Sheets
  • Webinar signups

Short-forms are perfect if you’re trying to get your audience to take immediate action. You don’t have to take too much time to nurture them. Instead, you save that part for your emailing series or the upcoming webinar.

Learn about Russell Brunson’s technique in the blog: Convert Like Crazy In Just 4 Simple Questions.

<h4>Knowing Which One To Choose Will Save You Time</h4>
If I had known to choose the right style, I’m sure the edits wouldn’t have been nearly as much as choosing the wrong one.

But hey, if you’re stuck on which one to use, you can always write both and split-test them! Gotta love a win-win situation!

For more copywriting tips and strategies, check out the blog at joshwrotethat.com.