In order for copy to be effective, it needs to connect with readers on a deeper level. Otherwise, there’s a good chance that it becomes part of the constant noise in the background.
Connect with your readers through emotional appeal
You see, the thing that happens when you start with emotional appeal is you hook people from the start. Your lizard brain is responsible for this. Hence, you should use primal (emotional) appeals like catering to one’s need for health, wealth, happiness, security, love and other desires.
Once you’ve catered to this, hooked people and have their attention, their rational minds will rationalize your arguments (to an extent) so they suit their initial decision. This is how the human brain is hardwired. Instinctually, we don’t like to admit when we’re wrong. So on a subconscious level we rationalize these initial feelings we have toward an offer.
In other words, if you get readers excited right off the bat and can deliver on your initial promise. Well, you’re off to a great start.
Should you always use emotional appeal at the start?
As a rule of thumb, it’s always good to begin by digging deep and thinking about the emotional benefits your product offers. Remember, this is the real reason people are interested in buying products and services – because of how they make a person feel.
When should you add in some logical appeal?
For purchasing decisions that only rely on a few factors (say 2 or 3), then it’s best to use logical appeal. Decisions with only a few factors to weigh, compare and consider it’s best to use logical appeal. This is based on the fact that our brains can only process so many different things at once. When there’s only a few factors involved, your brain can logically come to the right conclusion.
However, when there are a number of factors at play and the decision is actually quite complex, you should cater to the right-side of the brain. In other words, you should use more emotional appeal since the brain cannot process so many factors at once.
Make sure you consider your audience.
Of course, you must always consider who you’re talking to. For example if you’re writing to a techy at a company, they’re probably more interested in facts than emotional appeal. These are just assumptions. It’s critical that you test this to find out which types of messages resonate most.
How do you decide what emotions to appeal to?
You want to consider the reason why someone will act on the offer and purchase what you are selling. After each answer, dig deep. Ask why they are looking for that outcome – you’ll find a more specific answer.
An example taken from Ramit Sethi’s book,
Your Move, uses a weight loss plan as an example.
The first time you ask why someone wants the weight loss plan, the answer is to lose weight.
So then you ask, why do they want to lose weight?
Possibly so they can fit in their old pants.
Why would they want to fit in their old pants?
So they can look good.
Why do they want to look good?
They want to be confident!
And therein lies the true answer. This is the emotional appeal you may want to cater to in the case of a weight loss plan. Specifically, you’d want to position all your features as benefits the user can expect. Mainly in terms of confidence boosters.
A final word – you can never have one without the other.
More often than not, it’s a good idea to blend a combination of emotional and rational appeal. In some cases, emotional appeal can take it all the way, but in other cases you’ll need to give your readers a little more. This is when you want to add your dose of logic and rationale to the argument.
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