It’s Not About How Smart You Are

...Or how many products you have in stock…

…Or how many folks you have on your team…

…Or that you were the first to market.

Prospects just don’t care.

But here’s what they do care about, “What’s in it for them?”

And the way you tell your prospects, “What’s in it for them” is crucial to making the sale.

Denny Hatch wrote a post called “The Lure of Exclusivity” where he outlines the seven key copy drivers:

  • Fear
  • Greed
  • Guilt
  • Anger
  • Exclusivity
  • Salvation
  • Flattery

Case in point:

I’ve used Portland Adventure Bootcamp (sadly, the business closed in 2016) as an example before. Believe me, this is no easy workout. You have to want to do push ups, run stairs and jog first thing in the morning. As such, it would be easy for the target audience (women) to self-select out of signing up (heck, it would be easy for men to self-select out!). But look at these benefits:

Consider the emotions someone could be feeling as they read this (and remember – all sales are made based on an emotional response.)  You’re tired of your unwanted body fat (anger.) You imagine walking past a mirror and checking out your new, toned figure (flattery.) Your metabolism may have shifted, so you really do need personalized help figuring out what foods to eat (salvation.)

Throw in third-party testimonials, specific benefit statements and an iron-clad guarantee and  the copy is incredibly persuasive.

Compare that to this:

See the difference?  The copy is OK, but there’s a lot the site owner could do. Even turning the vague statements into specifics would go a long way. For instance, instead of saying, “heading towards a healthier lifestyle,” the site owner could tweak it to, “Know exactly what foods to eat to keep your metabolism and energy levels revved-up.”

Just a minor tweak – but one that more specifically tells the prospect, “what’s in it for them.”

So remember, it’s not about how smart you are, or all the cool things you’ve done. It’s about how you use the written word to share that enthusiasm with your readers.

Once you’ve mastered that, you’ll be rewarded with higher conversion rates and additional income. And that’s a benefit statement we can all enjoy.

2 replies
  1. Laura Crest says:


    Yes, mastering your content messages so that they are completely customer-centric (WIIFM?) and shine specific benefits makes the bottom-line difference between “good copy” and “sizzling, conversions-bent copy!” :-)

    Thanks for the insight!



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