I read The 12 Step Foolproof Sales Letter Template, by David Frey, a few years ago. This sales letter formula has made me millions of dollars since then.

A sales letter formula can be a big help with your marketing plan when you know exactly how to follow it. It’s important to be able to write good sales letters, and video letters as well. Over the years, I’ve added a few points to the sales letter formula I use, and I’d like to share them with you here.

Many thanks go to David, a brilliant marketer from San Antonio, Texas, for introducing me to the effective Sales Letter Template.

I kind of feel like I’m painting a mustache on the Mona Lisa by doing this, but many people have asked how I write sales letters and video sales letters so well. This is the exact formula to follow.

1. Call Out to Your Audience

Address your target audience (Attention: [insert your audience here]) at the top of your sales letter. This lets the reader know immediately that they are on the right page, so essentially this is your first yes, and you want to get your reader to say yes, mentally, as many times as possible.

2. Get their Attention

Grab the attention of your reader with a great headline that speaks directly to them. For example, “How to Lose 10 Pounds in 10 Days Quickly and Easily.”

3. Back Up the Big-Promise Headline With a Quick Explanation (Sub-Headline)

The sub-headline gives the main headline support. For example, “Lose Weight Without Giving Up the Foods You Love.”

4. Identify the Problem

Identify the audience (who they are, how they feel) or tell a story about a problem, a struggle, or a challenge you might have had in the past.

5. Provide the Solution

Reveal the solution, which is your product, and explain why it’s the best option out there. Remember, lots of other people have similar products, so ask yourself how you can stand out from everyone else.

6. Show the Pain and Cost of Development

Let your audience know the pain and cost you and others went through to develop the solution to the problem. Establish empathy and affinity with your audience.

7. Explain Ease of Use

Let your readers know just how easy it is to use your product or service.

8. Show Speed to Results

Give your readers a typical time frame within which to expect their desired outcome.

9. Future Cast

Let the reader imagine what their future could be like if they were to solve their problem. In your writing, use as many of the senses as possible. Here’s an example:

Imagine shopping for clothes that are two sizes smaller. How would you feel inside? Imagine looking in the mirror and feeling amazing. Imagine all your friends telling you how great you look. How would that feel? Even better, imagine walking past bakeries with all their wonderful smells of fresh doughnuts and cookies and not even thinking twice about entering.

10. Show Your Credentials

Establish your credibility and demonstrate your expertise.

11. Detail the Benefits

Use bullet points to list the benefits of your product or service.

Remember that benefits are not the same as features. People want to buy an outcome, not a product or service. So think about that when you’re writing about the benefits of what you’re selling. In the example above, readers aren’t buying a weight-loss product; rather, they’re buying a sexy body.

12. Get Social Proof

Use an outside authority or third-party validation, such as research statistics, quotes from credible or authoritative sources, case studies, and so on.

13. Make Your Offer

Tell readers exactly what they are getting for the price of your product or service.

14. Add Bonuses

Adding bonuses will often increase the perceived value of your product or service, but don’t go overboard with too many of them. Also, make sure your bonuses are worth the same amount as the cost of your program or more.

15. Build Up Your Value

Build up the value of your offer. Tell prospects how much everything is worth.

16. Reveal Your Price

Add the prices of your product and bonuses together to calculate the value, and then reveal a price that’s much cheaper. Explain why the price is what it is and why it is such a great value.

17. Inject Scarcity (If Any)

Offers that don’t involve scarcity don’t sell as well, but the scarcity needs to be genuine or you will hurt your business credibility.

Change the price, make this a limited-time offer, or take away a bonus—for example, bonuses available only at the end of this call or webinar, or for a certain number of days during the product launch, and so on.

18. Give a Guarantee

Eliminate, reverse, and take out perceived risks. Longer guarantee = fewer returns. Your buyer wants peace of mind in a skeptical world. For example, offer a 60-day risk-free trial.

19. Add a Call to Action

The call to action is a command. Be specific and tell readers exactly what to do. Use visuals, screenshots, and other tools to guide them through the next steps until completed.

20. Give a Warning

Warn them about the consequence or what’s going to happen if they don’t buy. For example, “If you don’t take action now, you will be in the same situation as last year, with the same amount of debt, if not more, lost profits, living out of your car,” and so on.

21. Close with a Reminder

Recap the whole offer and remind readers what they are getting. Summarize the problem, the solution, the offer, the guarantee, and the benefits and consequences they will experience.