21 Bullet Points That Will Increase Your Sales
That was one of the first things I learnt about copywriting.
Think about how you read web pages and social media sites. You scroll down until something catches your eye - a headline, a sub-heading, an image or a bullet-pointed or numbered list - and then you read that section.
That is why bullet points are one of the most powerful tools in a copywriter's arsenal, when used correctly. They make your copy easier to read and can demonstrate the benefits of your product or service in a clear, concise and distinctive way.
For the main part of this article,I'm going to share 21 bullet point templates that you can use in your copy for your web page, sales letters, brochures or Facebook ads.
These 21 "bullet point templates" are from one of the first books I read on copywriting, "How to Write Copy That Sells" by Ray Edwards.
There are some great tips which I hope you'll find useful and that you can begin putting into use with your own copy.
Let's kick off by going looking at 5 tips on how to use bullet points effectively:
write your bullet points concisely - 1-2 lines max.
remember they don't need to be complete sentences, leave that for your paragraphs
make them benefit-focused (remember people buy on emotion, not logic)
keep your bullets simple and avoid using sub-bullets, and sub-sub bullets!
start each bullet with the same word-type to keep consistency
think about using bullet points in the same way as headlines
When writing bullets, they may fall under 2 distinct types:
So, let's get into the 21 different types of bullet points!
1. The "Wrong" Bullet
We can use this type of bullet to dispel a common assumption. This is a great way to pique the interest of your readers. We're always intrigued when someone tells what we thought was true, is actually false.
You do need to be careful with this though - and make sure you have some facts or proof to back up your counter-argument
Example (Fitness Magazine): A low-carb diet is the best way to lose weight, right? WRONG! We'll explain why when you order our special report
This "pin" shows an example of the common assumption - plus a reality check.
2. The "Themed Sequence" Bullet
These bullets work well when you want to give the readers a list of important facts or benefits.
Example (Triathlon Coach): The 8 Things You Need for Your First Triathlon
3. The "Two Step" Bullet
You've seen these in action before. They're the bullet points that have a main benefit in the headline, followed by important fact or point in parentheses.
These "blind" bullets are great for creating high levels of interest. Check the example from Nerd Fitness below. Just by adding (without dieting) in brackets makes the copy more appealing
Check this example from Nerd Fitness above, where, just by adding (without dieting) in brackets the copy becomes more appealing.
4. The "Giveaway" Bullet
Every now and then it's good to give something away for free as it establishes authority and credibility.
And as Ray says in his book:
“If you can give people a tip or trick that’s stunningly good, they are more likely to think, ‘If that’s what they’re giving away in their sales promotion, what are they hiding behind the scenes? If the free stuff is this good, what kind of information do I get when I pay it?’”
Just remember to not give away ALL you best info for free!
5. The "Reverse Hook" Bullet
This type of bullet begins with an interesting fact and is followed up with an unexpected benefit.
Example (Email Marketing): 20% of emails go to spam and not the inbox. Here's a simple trick that you can use to to lower this % and reach more prospects.
6. The "Naked Benefit" Bullet
This is a pretty straightforward bullet which states the benefit the customer will get after purchasing your product.
Example (Sales Training): How to increase the number of sales appointments made from cold-calls
7. The "Transactional" Bullet
This bullet is written as if a transaction were taking place, for example, "Give me X and I'll give you Y".
It works even better if you can really highlight a big contrast between what the reader is giving you and what they'll get in return.
Example (Social Media Marketing Agency): Give me 15 minutes and I'll show you 3 ways to improve your Facebook Ads to double your current ROI.
Just one word of caution when using this bullet - you need to be able to follow through with your claims, or risk losing credibility and getting a bad reputation.
8. The "If... Then" Bullet
With this type of bullet you want to think about a problem or issue that your readers might have and are trying to solve, and then show them what result they can get.
Example (Learn Guitar Course): If you have 20 minutes spare each day, then you can learn to play the guitar.
9. The "Truth About" Bullet
Use this bullet to introduce a topic which is controversial in your sector, that will probably polarise people but get them to read on and want to find out more.
Example (Vegan Diet Program): The Extraordinary Truth About Vegan Diets (and it's not what you think!)
You can also see from this example that it's possible to combine different types of bullet points, in the above example we're combining a "truth about" bullet with a "two-step" bullet
10. The "Single Most" Bullet
This is a highly-effective bullet to use as it can really show your product or service as being the fastest, quickest, cheapest, and most superior option on the market.
Example (Photography Course): Learn the single most important factor when taking photos at night.
You just need to make sure you can back up these claims
11. The "How-To" Bullet
A very common bullet - so if you use this one, try to make it stand out and be different from your competitors. Use specifics and make it tangible to the reader, give them something which they can picture in their mind.
Example (Golf Swing Coach): How to improve your golf swing and hit the ball further with less effort
12. The "Number" Bullet
You can use this bullet when you have a specific number of ways or reasons for doing something.
This is a good bullet which can be combined with another bullet, such as the "how to".
Let's see how we can adjust our bullet from the previous example:
Example (Golf Swing Coach): 7 ways to improve your golf swing and hit the ball further with less effort
Here's an example from PNC Insights of a numbered bullet followed up with a slightly different take on the "how to" bullet.
13. The "Sneaky" Bullet
An interesting bullet that can be used to imply some sort of conspiracy that your readers know about, and that you can help solve.
Again, we can see in this example how two different types of bullets have been combined, the "sneaky" bullet and the "two-step" bullet.
14. The "Better Than" Bullet
This is a bullet that can really grab the attention of your readers. You want to find something that is good and make it even better.
For example, maybe you've recently discovered that holding meetings for teams spread over multiple locations works better with an online platform, rather than asking the various teams to come together in one location.
Example (Web Conferencing Software Company): Discover why holding meetings with our online conferencing software is better than meeting face-to-face.
15. The "Simple Fact" Bullet
Using a simple fact to demonstrate how readers are missing out something, or a worst case scenario, then follow this up with how your product or service can solve that problem.
Example (Electricity Company): Most home owners are wasting 15% of their energy, there are steps that can prevent this from happening
16. The "What" Bullet
These are simple bullets to write but still highly effective. They are used to answer common "What..?" questions that customers may have about your industry.
Example (Accountancy Firm):
- What to do when your tax-return is late
- What to do if you tax refund is late
- What to do if you get audited
17. The "What Never" Bullet
A slight variation on the "what" bullet in that it plays on the fear-factor of readers. This bullet works well when combined with the "two-step".
Example (Career Coach): What never to say in a job interview (if you want to avoid rejection)
It can also be combined with a "numbered" bullet, as in this example by The Muse
It's human nature for us to be super curious when we see the word "never"!
18. The "Do You" Bullet
Use this bullet when you want to highlight a common mistake or problem that your readers face - and you have the solution.
Example (English Language School): Do you ever make these mistakes in English?
This was a famous headline from Max Sackheim and is considered to be one of the best headlines in ad history.
What makes this type of bullet so appealing?
it instinctively creates curiosity and we want to know if we are making these mistakes and think to ourselves, "Maybe this guy knows how to stop me making these mistakes!"
19. The "Reason Why" Bullet
This bullet lays out the reasons why someone should buy your product or service. Use it to highlight why your offer is better than another company's, why they should buy now, why they should choose you.
Example (Business Start-Up Consultancy): 9 Reasons Why You Should Start an Online Business
This arouses curiosity and should get readers to think, "I want to know what these reasons are!"
20. The "Secrets Of" Bullet
You can use this type of bullet if you have a unusual solution, method or tool. Used sparingly it can build curiosity, overuse and it can harm your credibility.
Russell Branson really plays on his knowledge of secrets in his book, DotCom Secrets.
This is taken from his landing page, and you can also see some of the bullets we talked about earlier being put into action, such as "numbered", "how-to" and "why" and quite a few "two-steps.
21. The "Probing Question" Bullet
This may appear to be similar to bullet #18 - but the difference is that with "18" we are exposing a problem that we are fairly certain readers are making.
However, the "probing question" bullet can be a question about whether they have a specific kind of knowledge.
Example (Content Marketing Agency): Do you know these three tricks to sell more with video content to sell (and the one thing to NEVER do)?
A couple of final tips on how to approach the process of including bullets into your sales copy.
Aim to write 5 bullets for each bullet type - this will give you a final list of over 100 bullets that you can use in your sales copy. Obviously you don't want to use all 100, so start to whittle it down to the ones which you feel have the biggest impact.
The final number you choose may depend on where your copy is being published and how long it needs to be.
Weave the bullets into your sales copy so it "flows". By this, I mean you want to make the copy look consistent. For example, two short paragraphs followed by ten bullets, followed by another two short paragraphs and then another set of 10 bullets, and so on.
I hope this has been useful and can help you to start writing some super-impactful bullets for your product or service!