You’re trying to make a sale. Putting incredibly high-value resources on the web encouraged readers to reciprocate, which brought him tons of positive SEO. This will make it easier to get the reader to agree with you when you move up the ladder and make a somewhat larger ask. Every business owner knows how difficult it is to work in their business and on it at the same time. These people used the decisions of the majority to influence their own actions. This can be through the use of testimonials, email list size, product reviews, or an endorsement from a trusted authority. Becoming someone whom his customers couldn’t help but like persuaded customers to do business with him over and over again. You can use this persuasion principle in your copywriting to show customers the high value that you offer and influence them to take the action that you want. This is the authority principle of persuasion in action. You can use authority in your copy as a tool of influence.
Most of the questions people ask me are about SEO. Getting the #1 spot in Google is “sexy” in the marketing world.
I get it. I love seeing my domain in the top spot as well.
But SEO tactics have drowned out an extremely important part of selling online: copywriting.
According to Copyblogger, “copywriting is the art and science of strategically delivering words (whether written or spoken) that get people to take some form of action.”
Let’s go even deeper.
What is your end goal of getting someone to take action?
You’re trying to make a sale.
To put it bluntly: You’re using words to persuade someone to take money out of their pocket and put it in yours.
The mistake that could be killing your sales
Most marketers go about selling the wrong way.
They believe that their product or service is superior to the competition and that the customer will buy based on that fact.
They spew off facts, figures, and statistics about their product to customers and expect the sales to come rolling in.
You and I both know this rarely works.
It reads like a badly written catalog description. Often, these businesses wonder why they have terrible conversion rates despite pumping tons of cash into SEO campaigns.
The answer lies in the inability to make emotional connections with readers.
This article will teach you how to use psychology to pull the emotional levers in your customer’s mind that persuade them to buy.
People buy experiences, not products
Many companies incorrectly assume that customers buy based on a logical and linear process.
If we’re honest with ourselves, most of us do not really read the heavy facts that accompany the products we buy when we go into a store.
We instead choose products that make us feel good. It may be something small, like the color or packaging of a product.
It could also be based on the experiences that consumers associate with that product. In fact, Harvard Business School professor Gerald Zaltman says 95% of our purchasing decisions are made subconsciously.
This means that your decisions are mostly being made on an emotional level.
Great advertisers know this and try to make us connect to the product in a special way. That’s why we choose one product over others even if there are cheaper or better alternatives.
Psychology is about understanding people. If we understand people, then we can relate to them in our writing and other forms of expression and persuade them to take action.
The psychological triggers that will make people line up to give you money
One of the keys to solid copywriting on the web is writing for real people rather than writing for search engines.
I’m not putting down keyword research. I believe SEO fundamentals are crucial for getting organic traffic to your website.
However, keyword density should never detract from the quality and emotionality of your expression in the copy.
If you really want to boost your sales and get more customers with better copywriting, you need to learn the basics of persuasion and influence.
In the classic book Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion, Dr. Robert Cialdini lays the groundwork for what makes people say “yes.”
After 35 years of rigorous, evidence-based research and a three-year program of study on influence and persuasion, Cialdini has discovered the six universal principles for what persuades people to comply.
If you’ve studied copywriting or marketing before, you may be familiar with some of the concepts in the book. Most marketers brush these gems off to the side in favor of traffic hacks and SEO techniques.
These six levers of influence are some of the fundamentals of persuasion and great copywriting.
Cialdini mentions the six keys of influence as follows:
These six principles are the key to understanding human behavior in a range of situations. You as a writer and marketer can use them effectively in your copy to reach your audience in a unique way.
They can also help you to predict how people will react to the content so that you can make appropriate adjustments.
This article goes beyond merely listing these principles. It explains to you how you can use them to attract, convince, persuade, and convert prospects or other traffic into paying customers using copywriting.
A step-by-step approach to making your copy more effective
People feel obligated to give back to someone who’s given them something first.
If one of your friends gives you a gift for your birthday or invites you to a party, you’ll feel more inclined to do the same or give another favor to that person in the future.
People are much more likely to agree with someone if they feel like they owe them a favor.
Professor Phillip Kunz of Brigham Young University did a study where he sent out 600 Christmas cards to total strangers to see what would happen.
Over the next few weeks, Kunz got over 200 replies from the recipients. These letters even included long notes. Some were three pages long!
In another study completed in 1971 by Dennis Regan at Cornell University, he brought his subjects into a room and told them that they were going to evaluate art. Regan’s assistant would be planted in the room as well.
The assistant would then leave the room, but in some instances, he would return with 2 bottles of Coca-Cola and give one to the subject.
When the experiment was over, the assistant asked each subject if they would buy a $.25 raffle ticket from him to help him win a prize.
It was found that the subjects who had received a Coke from the assistant bought two times as many raffle tickets as the ones who received nothing.
The results in both scenarios indicate that people likely gave back because of the societal norm to return the favor to someone who’s given you a gift.
How to use reciprocity in your copywriting
The best way to use reciprocity in your copywriting is to add as much value to your prospect’s life as possible.
You want to make sure that you’re always giving them useful information long before you ever ask for anything in return.
In this way, you’re positioning yourself as a highly valuable resource that has gotten them closer to their goals.
A great example of the law of reciprocity in action is Jon Cooper of Point Blank SEO’s list of link-building methods.
This monster post is over 19,000 words and contains an exhaustive list of just about every link-building tactic known to man.
Not only is there tons of information, but the list is also interactive and allows you to filter by how long each tactic takes to execute, link value, and dependency on other sources such as content, design, development, and video production.
After looking at Open Site Explorer, I can see that the page has garnered an incredible amount of SEO love with over 922 total links from 395 root domains, which has definitely improved his search engine rankings.
The page even has top blogs linking to it, like Backlinko, Moz, Shopify, and Search Engine Land. Jon also has an option for people to sign up and download the list as a PDF. I’m certain that he’s added tons of emails to his list as well.
Putting incredibly high-value resources on the web encouraged readers to reciprocate, which brought him tons of positive SEO.
Commitment and consistency
Have you ever been in an argument or debate and refused to let the other person win?
As the conversation progressed, you probably found yourself taking a firmer stance on your point than when you started. This happens because humans generally like to stay consistent with what they say and do.
In a study done by two Canadian psychologists, Robert Knox and James Inkster, the researchers found that bettors at a racetrack were more confident in their horse’s chances of winning the race after they placed the bet.
In another study, Psychologist Thomas Moriarty wanted to see how nearby New York City beachgoers would react to witnessing a staged theft.
Moriarty had his assistant put a beach blanket down a few feet from a chosen person on the beach.
After spending a couple of minutes on the blanket listening to a portable…