Sales letters made simple: The anatomy of the “Dear Friend”

Hey there,

This week I’m going to break down the infamous “Dear Friend” letters that you so often see on sales pages. In case you don’t know what I’m talking about, here’s an example…letter

Dear Friend,

It seems like yesterday that I was 80 pounds overweight. Well.. That’s because it was practically yesterday.

Just six months ago I was 260 pounds. Now I weigh 180 pounds. Let me tell you how this is possible, and how you can get the same results.

Look familiar? Now let’s get into how to write a damn good one of these.

Tip #1: Be genuine

The best Dear Friends are genuine. Tell a true story – and tell it exactly how you would tell it to your best friend. Use the same kind of language you would use in everyday conversation.

Tip #2: Overcome adversity

Everyone loves a hero – so tell your heroic story about you overcame some sort of adversity. Whether it’s overcoming being overweight, or overcoming feelings of insecurity and self-doubt, think of something in your life that served as an obstacle for you to overcome. It helps if it relates to your product or service you’re selling, too.

Tip #3: Give your reader hope


Even if your reader decides not to hire you or buy your product, let them walk away with something they didn’t have before: hope that their problem can be solved. After you’re done telling your story, talk about how and why your reader can accomplish all of their goals, or solve a specific problem they have. You’ve just proven that the problem can in fact be solved because you solved it yourself – now give them hope that anyone can do it, including them.

Now, here’s an example of these three tips at work:

Dear Friend,

I know we’ve just met, so maybe it’s a bit early to be calling each other friends, but the fact that you’re reading this page shows me that we have a problem in common: money.

We both want more of it, and we want to spend less time earning it. Well, I think I’ve come a long ways in solving this problem. Let me show you what I mean, and how you can solve this problem of yours, too.

It all started when I began using Craigslist to advertise my guitar lessons business. I started just like everyone else on Craigslist – writing long paragraphs about why I’m such a great teacher. But there was a problem… No one wanted to read these long, boring paragraphs! So I didn’t get a single call.

So I started to think… How can I make people want to read my ads more? And then it hit me.


I began learning HTML, and using this code (which is the same code used to make websites) to design my ads. I made different text different sizes, and different colors. Plus, I also used time-tested sales writing tips to make my ads powerful and persuasive.

And you know what? My phone started ringing off the hook!

Then, I partnered up with a graphic designer, and together, using my powerful writing skills, and her expertise in graphic design, we made ads that were irresistable!

And we’ve designed a system so anyone, in any field, can use these same ads. You too can use Craigslist to blow past all of the long, boring paragraphs and shine through with a well-designed, powerfully written ad guaranteed to attract clients. And the best part is as soon as you get just one client, the system pays for itself.

To better writing (and more money),


5 Replies to “Sales letters made simple: The anatomy of the “Dear Friend””

  1. Your explanation is great. It’s super easy to understand and I’ll definitely use these tips whenever I can.

    Also, how much do you charge for CL ads?
    Shoot me an email and let me know – I was looking to get some ads for my business.

  2. This is good stuff. A lot of sales letters open with “Dear Friend” and then immediately throw a hard sales pitch into the reader’s face… completely UNLIKE what we would do when writing to a friend!

    Your example sounds much more like a LETTER to a friend. I like it.

    BTW, I just found your site from your Warrior Forum post about getting clients. Also pure gold.

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