The copywriting tip you are about to read could be one of the most impactful marketing ideas you will ever consider.
Well, it’s about headlines (aka email subject lines, video openers, special report, article, advertorial, blog post titles, etc.)
That’s where you get most of the leverage in your marketing…
Ergo your business, ergo your lifestyle, ergo… Well you can fill in the blanks from here.
Anyway, I learned this during a copywriting peer review hosted by Sandy Franks with American Writers And Artists Inc. She’d brought in one of today’s biggest guns in marketing, Joe Shriefer, Creative Director with Agora Financial. He’s grown that company to something like $200 million in annual revenues.
Not by coincidence, Joe oversees about 20 copywriters. He’s got a sharp eye for ads that work, and ads that don’t. And all too often, he sees one major flaw that most copywriters miss.
Once you know what to look for, you too will know whether any piece of marketing has a good chance of selling or not.
So, what is this acid test?
To evaluate any given headline, subject line, blog title, etc., ask yourself this:
Can it be easily dismissed?
Notice your response…
Did your brain say, “Move on!”…
Or was there something about it that almost literally forced you to keep going?
Here’s what happens:
The human brain is wired so that when our senses detect something, the most primitive part of our brain responds first. Dubbed our “reptile brain”, it’s main functions are, well to keep it PG here, survival and procreation. It’ll either dismiss the stimulus if it can…Or, it tells the next higher level of the brain, “Hey, you better look into this!”
If it’s dismissed, as most stimuli are, you’re never even aware it happened. Filtering out all the things in our environment is what keeps us sane. If we had to respond to everything our senses encounter, we’d go nuts.
So if your ad’s headline can be easily dismissed, the audience you’d hoped to attract will never even know it was there. The job of every ad you publish is to first shake up that reptile brain so your reader/viewer/listener can’t help but give it his or her attention. The problem is, ad copy gets written by the higher centers of the brain. We try to be cute or clever or argue our prospects into giving us their attention. All of which, of course, is instantly dismissed by the reptile brain.
Unless you do something to startle it.
It’s why, before the internet, the National Enquirer was the hottest selling publication at your neighborhood grocery checkout line…
And why, as rumor has it, its copywriters are some of the highest paid writers on the planet.
In case you’re too young to remember, here are some of the gems they’ve produced:
BIGFOOT KEPT LUMBERJACK AS LOVE SLAVE
FATHER GOES FOR KIDNEY TREATMENT – LEAVES HOSPITAL AS WOMAN
HILLARY CLINTON ADOPTS ALIEN BABY
JAPANESE SPACECRAFT ATTACKS HAWAII WITH EARTHQUAKE WEAPON
MACEDONIA MANUFACTURES METALIC WAR SPIDERS!
ALIENS ARE LIVING IN MY TOILET
HEADLESS BODY IN TOPLESS BAR
Well, you get the idea…
Point is, before you publish, or even write the rest of any ad, ask yourself, can the headline be easily dismissed?
So how are your ads, emails, landing pages and sales letters shaping up?
The answer could have a direct bearing on your income — and your lifestyle — from this day forward.
Heed thee my words and profit ye henceforth! 🙂