Using video to sell online: how to get started

The problem with selling anything online is that you can’t get face-to-face and tell people how your product is just what they need. For most of us, it’s far easier to help people in person because we pick up clues from their body language.

True, you can make up for what’s missing by becoming good at copywriting (that’s certainly something I’ve been working on) but there’s another option.


I know what you’re thinking…but don’t panic.

Video ‘sales letters’ are more interesting, more dynamic and more emotional than text sales letters. Best of all, I keep hearing that video sales letters simply out-convert traditional sales letters by a mile. So I had to give it a go.

But the main reason I wanted to use video instead of text to promote my course WAHM Fast Start is that I knew I could explain it much better by talking than I could by writing. The story behind the course is emotional – I didn’t want to hand my baby over to someone else. And I felt I could get that across better using spoken words than written ones.

On the other hand, I had to get the video done fast. It was September already and I had no time to fiddle with hair, make up and getting my video looking perfect! The main aim had to be to  help get mums started in business by getting them on the course. So I decided to do a fairly basic video and accept that I’d have to learn more about video production on my next project 🙂

So here are my tips for getting started with video sales letters:

  • Talk to someone specific

The best way to do a sales presentation is to have a specific person you’re talking to. Don’t just talk to ‘your audience’. Instead, talk to a specific person in your mind.

This person doesn’t have to be real and it’s okay if you’ve never met them. For me it was easy because I’d written the course that I needed four years ago, so I was talking to myself in 2008. But it doesn’t have to be you and it doesn’t even have to be a real person. Just make sure you’re talking to one person and you have a clear picture of that person in your mind e.g. their age, what’s on their mind, how you can help them, male or female, ages of their kids (if any), where they work.

If I were using a video camera, I would have looked  in the camera as if I were talking to that person one-to-one. I used a slide show instead, partly because I had a lot of info to get over but also because I need a bit more practice in front of a camera first.

  • Talk about the problem

Start your videos off by talking about the problem. For me this was easy because I’ve been there! You could also talk about how other people have the same problem and how it affects their lives. Try to connect with your viewer on an emotional level.

  • Present the solution

Once you’ve got your viewer to really feel the problem, the next step is to present the solution.

Excitement transfers from person to person much more easily over video than text. People should start to feel excited simply from your tone of voice. Looking back at my video now, that’s something I probably need to work on. But I was cautious this first time because I’m a down-to-earth kind of person and it would sound weird if I accidentally went too far. I don’t want to sound like I’m on QVC!

(Watch out for my next video to see if I step up the excitement a notch :))

I wanted to go into the solution in some depth, so I could cover it from all angles. True, I was concerned that it might be too long for some people, but I put notes beneath it for those who prefer to quickly scan through the content.

  • Putting in the proof

Next, I really needed to add some proof. Which was a problem because it’s the first time I’d run the course! Luckily for me I’d written a book on exactly this subject, which I was giving away as part of the course. Plus a heck of a lot of content on Business Plus Baby. I also added a testimonial about my mentoring to the notes beneath the video.

The types of proof you can use are video testimonials, video demonstrations and video before and after shots. I’m planning to build up my proof from now on so that I have it ready for my future products.

  • Calls to action

Finally, it’s time for the call to action. Let people know exactly what you want them to do. “Click the buy now button” or “Pick up the phone and call.” It’s best to have at least two calls to action and I had three – one at the end of the video and two buy buttons in the text beneath.

I also made sure the link to the page where people could buy was in the video description on YouTube.

A guarantee can really help people feel confident about buying too.

And it worked! I have a fabulous group of people taking the course right now. I know there’s a lot I can do to improve my videos, but I’m very happy with my first video sales let

ter. Stay tuned for the next one!

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5 Replies to “Using video to sell online: how to get started”

  1. Hey, well done you. Scary thing to do a video. Any chance you would mind sharing what kind of hard- and software you used to shoot it, and then to edit it and get it onto your website. Inge

    1. Thank you! My mic is this one, which as microphones go is fairly basic but the sound quality is great considering I only paid £40 for it. I kept the video production really simple and just used Powerpoint. I created a presentation as normal, added transitions and recorded narration, then used Powerpoint to convert it to a video (the more recent versions have this feature but not a lot of people know it’s there). There’s not really any need to edit because the narrations are linked to the slide that was showing at the time it was recorded, so if you make a mistake you just go back and re-record the voiceover for that slide. I just uploaded the video to YouTube and embedded it in a webpage.

  2. Im just about to start a new website selling speech therapy activities for parents and I want to do a video for each product. Thank you for this, it was useful and well-timed!

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