Content: Making The Promise

In the last post, I described the “picture:” how to make a product or service “real” to a target market. In other words,you as a seller wants the prospective customer to actually see him or herself enjoying the benefits of whatever it is you are offering.

It’s an excellent start, but it is not enough. The consumer needs some assurance that the product or service is really going to fulfill his or her need. In order to provide this assurance, the copywriter needs to keep one simple fact in mind: People buy based on emotion.  In short, you need to appeal to the heart when making a promise – don’t try to appeal to reason at this point yet (that comes in the next step).

Remember that the sale is not about you and your product or service, regardless of how marvelous it is. It’s about your prospect and how that product or service is going to fulfill a desire or need.

One mistake that many ad copywriters make is to go on and on about how great the product is. For example:

The X-supplement is scientifically formulated from genuine organic herbs imported from the rain forests of Bali-Hai, and are guaranteed to make you look and feel as wonderful as you did at age twenty…”

Right. Tell me another story.  Here’s a better approach:

I have some good news and some bad news here. The good news is that after a week on the X-Supplement, folks like you are reporting higher energy levels, slimmer figures and  better sex lives. The bad news is that after they’ve had to replace their wardrobe to fit their new, slimmer bodies, they’re not always sure what to do with all that excess energy…”

Granted, this example is exaggerated, but I trust the point is made.  You will notice that here again, the copywriter is painting a picture, making the benefits of the product more real to the prospect. You’ll also notice that the copywriter is targeting the emotions – in this case, desire. Who doesn’t want more energy? Who doesn’t want to look thinner and have better sex?

There are of course other emotions that you can target, fear being one of the biggies. I’ll get into this subject later on. For now, just remember that people decide to buy with their emotions.

However, they have to justify that decision with reason. This is where “proof” comes into the equation, which I will discuss in my next post.

Brad Anderson

Brad Anderson is the founder and CEO of Fruition. Brad combined his passion for marketing, technology, innovation and data-based decision making into a successful national digital marketing agency when he created the Denver-based Fruition. Brad brings the unique perspective of an expert marketer, board member, agency owner and entrepreneur to his career and his thought-leadership writing.

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