Let’s say someone you know walks over to you sombrely and says:
“I’ve got some bad news”
No doubt you’ll get a sudden knot in your stomach and a hankering to know just what the news could be.
What’s the cause of that sudden anxiety?
Well, lets face it…
Your first thought is naturally; “how will this affect me?”
Can’t help it. Can’t fight it. It’s human nature. Even if the news will only affect you by proxy that’s the first question your mind and body asks.
That’s why WIIFM is so important when trying to sell something.
‘What’s in it for me?’. WIIFM.
That’s the most important question to answer – way before anything else, way before you even try to engage in a sale.
If you haven’t answered that in your sales call/article/advert/email then any conversions will be due to blind luck.
(image credit: The Telegraph)
Here’s a fact for you….
“On average, 8 out of 10 people will read headline copy, but only 2 out of 10 will read the rest.”
(Courtesy of Copyblogger)
It’s interesting, isn’t it?
And, almost sad in a way – because I know that many writers put so much effort into their actual content.
Headlines can be frustrating too. After all, they’re always limited and you can only get across a fraction of what you want to say.
So, I guess that’s the trick.
Finding that biting point – the right amount of information, to go along with the right amount of ‘readme’ promiscuity.
Find a hook, reel them in and then concentrate on engaging the few people who actually continue reading.
And remember, once you’ve got that headline out of the way – ever other line that you write is in itself an argument to get your reader to read the next line.
And the next. And the next. And the next.
Make every word count!
I’m a fan of Banksy’s works, and it makes me sad to see how the media are hellbent on finding out his identity.
Some mysteries just don’t need to be solved. As long as a fellow creative isn’t doing evil by being anonymous, I think we should let them have their secrecy. In fact, in my opinion, he’s doing a lot of good as he is.
Have I ever wondered who he is?
Yeah, sure I have.
But, that doesn’t mean I have to know. I think sometimes, as a society, we’re so keen on getting what we want we don’t stop to think ‘do I actually need to do this?’.
Let’s save our newspaper pages for reporting the real hard-hitting facts about the things we do need to know. And by that I do mean facts, no fake news.