It never ceases to amaze me that I can write words on paper (or the computer) to convince people to send me money. The subject of persuasion is endlessly fascinating.
Today, I’m going to introduce you to one of the most effective psychological hot buttons – one that you can profit from immediately. I’m talking about giving people a “reason why.”
Telling people the reason why you are doing something – or want them to do something – is one of the most powerful influencers of human behavior. If I could use just one copy approach in my marketing, that would probably be it.
In his book Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion, Robert Cialdini describes an experiment conducted by Harvard social psychologist Ellen Langer. Langer had a researcher approach people waiting in line to use a library copy machine and asked if he could cut in.
The first time he tried this, he said, “Excuse me, I have five pages. May I use the Xerox machine?” This request was granted 60 percent of the time. But the second time he tried it (with different people waiting in line), he said, “Excuse me, I have five pages. May I use the Xerox machine because I’m in a rush?” – and this request was granted 94 percent of the time.
Why? Because he gave the people a reason why he wanted to cut in line. That’s what triggered the magic “yes” response. Using this psychological “trigger” in your marketing can massively increase your success.
Copywriter Maxwell Sackheim, famous for writing the long-running ad “Do You Make These Mistakes in English?” and originator of the book-of-the-month concept, said: “Whenever you make a claim or special offer in your advertising, come up with an honest reason why, and then state it sincerely. You’ll sell many more products this way.”
And today we are given a BIG reason why to have a sale.
It’s National Eat Your Beans Day in America.
I’m not joking.
It is, and I might, but more important, according to Langer’s study above, that’s reason enough to have a sale.
People don’t care that eating beans are not directly related to your product (unless you sell air fresheners!). People just want to enjoy a sale. And your reason why is permission for them to do so.
Of course, there’s a bigger reason why to have a sale today, tomorrow, and Sunday.
It is Independence Day Weekend in America.
There are so many ways you can tie in a promotion of your product to July 4th. Or, if you’re Canadian like me, it’s all aboot celebrating July 1st – Canada Day. That’s a reason why to have a sale up here.
Are you selling today?
You better be…because any day that ends in Y is National Sales Day, as far as I’m concerned. There are so many opportunities to have a sale…and so many good reasons why!
Don’t believe me? Read this…
The Truth About a Sale
By Seth Godin
When things go on sale, (while supplies last, our annual savings event, end-of-season markdowns) it is a combination of scarcity and abundance.
Abundance because there’s more here for the person who takes action. More variety, more for your money.
And scarcity, because sales never last forever.
We can get a lot of mileage out of telling ourselves and our friends that we bought it on sale.
Sales are effective for two kinds of mindsets:
The person who is wired to enjoy the sport of the sale. You’ll find people clipping grocery coupons who charge an hourly rate far higher than the money they’re saving on coupons. They’re not doing it for the money, necessarily, they’re doing it because of how it makes them feel (like an active participant, like someone ahead of the pack). This person is attracted to the potential abundance of buying on sale.
And the person who was interested but had no real reason to take action. If what’s on offer today is going to be on offer tomorrow, better to just wait. The scarcity that a sale creates means that the feeling of missing it, of being left out, is compelling enough that it’s better to take action now than it is to wait.
It doesn’t matter what the sale is ostensibly for. The sale is a signal, a chance to sit up and take notice and possibly take action
PS – Here’s more truth…
“You must APPLY all the information you have…you can’t just gather information. You must take action. Many folks invest time and money in learning new skills but are still broke because they haven’t put them into use. Be an ACTION TAKER, not an information gatherer. Do. Don’t just talk. Get outside of your comfort zone. Avoid self-sabotage. Take responsibility for your success by being an action taker. Fail forward. Those who don’t take personal responsibility and don’t take action will be in the same place 12 months from now…only older. I know you’re different, and I know you are an action taker. You want a better life, and you deserve it, now go out and get it.” – Bedros Keuilian