The Real Copywriter’s Lift Letter
The advertising copywriter’s words are always speaking for someone else, like the company that’s paying for the promotion. But recently, I found a promotional package in my mailbox where the copywriter had his own special message for me.
I mention this not only because it’s the first time I’ve seen anything like this message, but also as a chance to review a component of direct mail marketing that you might want to use in one of your promotional packages.
The two images you see are the front and back panels of a component called a lift letter or lift note. It’s called that because it’s known to give a “lift” to the campaign’s response rate.
This mail package for the Skeptical Inquirer magazine is unique because it includes not one, but two lift letters. A lift letter is always signed by someone other than the individual who signed the main letter in the envelope package. That’s true here. The standard letter is signed by the executive director and one lift letter is signed by the magazine’s editor.
But then there’s the other lift letter from the copywriter/consultant (the images shown above). Inside the half-fold component (5.5 x 6 inches folded), the lift letter is addressed to “Dear Fellow Skeptic,” and the copywriter tells a personal story about growing up and how he got involved with the Skeptical Inquirer.
That’s the sort of angle I expect to see in a lift letter. It should be written as a more personal correspondence than the standard letter in the package. It should encourage the reader on a one-to-one level to take advantage of whatever offer the package makes and it should end with a personal appeal. This copywriter lift letter does that by concluding, “So do yourself a big favor and become a subscriber. I know that I’m going to.”
Notice the casual language, written as if the words were being spoken rather than using a formal writing style.
I don’t know if this copywriter’s life letter will convince prospects to subscribe to the magazine any more than a lift letter from someone else at the magazine, but it’s a new approach. New and different can certainly generate attention. It’s like a financial institution including a note from a branch manager rather than an executive. Maybe you or a colleague in your marketing department would like to include a note that gives your unique perspective on the promotion. Wouldn’t it impress a reader if someone in marketing said, “This is the finest offer I’ve ever worked on in all my years in marketing.”?
So there are two points to remember when you think about the copywriter’s lift letter from this magazine offer: 1) use another component, like a lift letter, to attract attention, and 2) try something different because it can peak the interest of your prospects.