The Essentials Of The Wall St. Journal Letter (“Tale Of Two Young Men”) by Martin Conroy 

By  Csaba Borzasi

Today I have a special treat for you!

You may have heard about the famous Wall Street Journal Letter which is also called the “Billion Dollar Letter”.

It's one of the most respected direct response marketing promotions of all time that generated more than $2 BILLION between 1975-2003...

And has one of the most ripped-off leads of all time, too.

It's no wonder why pretty much everyone and their mother are raving about it...

It has everything you'd ever want in a timeless piece of sales copy.

Or does it?

Well... Today I'm going to reveal exactly why the famous "Wall Street Letter" isn't just the most over-hyped sales letter of all time with a meager 0.3% conversion rate...

It's also a blatant swipe of a lesser-known letter from 1919 talking about the Civil War (!)

I realize that this video is probably going to piss off a lot of people...

But hey - it's the truth.

Don't believe me?

Click this link to see for yourself…

Prefer video instead? Watch Below!

An Incredible Story Lead By Martin Conroy

The sales letter has a great hook. It starts with the story of two young men who returned to college for their 25th reunion. 

They were above-average students with ambitious dreams for the future.

Interestingly, they were quite alike. Both were happily married with three kids and worked at the same company after graduation.

Except for ONE major difference.

One of them was the manager of the small department of the company whereas the other one was the president!

In just a few lines, the writer hooks the audience with a relatable story that many have experienced in their lives.

What makes it so effective? 

It speaks to the most dominant emotion of the target audience - being left behind in their lives.

This is the major fear for most people so they will go to major lengths to avoid it.

We are usually comparing our progress to those of our peers.


Hence, this story hits the nail on the head by evoking the fear of being left out.

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Explaining The Difference And Positioning The Product

The sales letter revolves around one big idea, one pain point, and a promise.

The writer then agitates the problem and goes on to ask a “philosophical” question.

What makes such a difference in the lives of people?

Some people achieve huge milestones and professional success whereas others struggle through their professional lives.

Contrary to popular belief, Martin Conroy states that this isn’t about talents, intelligence, or dedication.

Rather, it is about how well-informed you are and how you apply the knowledge.

Hence, the concept behind the Wall Street Journal is revealed; to keep you updated with the latest trends and open new doors of opportunity for you.

What’s wonderful about this letter is how direct it is in its core message.

Then, the story has been linked up well to show how knowledge makes a difference in the lives of people.

So far, everything feels pretty effortless, which is great.

The Sales Pitch

Next comes the unique selling proposition of the Wall Street Journal.

The sales message has been very strategic as it positions the journal as the must-have subscription to excel in business or professional settings.

It gives you inside knowledge from the experts and keeps you up-to-date with the business trends.

This is especially beneficial in the fast-paced corporate world where quick decisions are required, which can also shape the future of an organization.

As you can probably tell, the sub-headings are also very effective as they clearly communicate the ‘what’, ‘why’, and 'how to' about the offer.

Then, there is future pacing that makes you visualize the experience of owning the magazine.

The writer describes the cover as ‘the read front page in America’.

There are three major sections dealing with business news, consumer insights, purchasing patterns, and comprehensive investing guides.

Isn’t this surprising that the letter has a 0.3% conversion rate? Why?

What needs to improve?

Well, there is a very interesting story that you don’t want to miss out on.

Check the video to find out the less-known secrets about the billion-dollar sales letter.

Do you think this letter would work today?


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Interested in more great content on copywriting? Check out my Copywriting Resource Hub where you'll find in-depth guides, interesting case studies, and practical resources that will help you boost your conversions and sell more, without being salesy or aggressive.

Csaba Borzasi

Csaba Borzási is the founder of Game of Conversions. After spending 10 years learning the ins and outs of persuasion psychology, Csaba now focuses on what he loves most: helping ambitious entrepreneurs grow their online business and get more profitable customers. When he isn't geeking out on discovering how the human mind works, you can probably find him climbing a mountain, dancing salsa, or traveling around the globe.

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