Like it or not, most of what we do in marketing involves influence. We are constantly engaged in an attempt to influence someone’s decision-making process.
Now, this can be done for good as powerfully as for evil, but there is a science to it that every great marketer comes to adopt in both writing and selling.
The secret to influence starts with the understanding that most people don’t make decisions with their head, they make them with their heart. No matter how much logic and data you pump into a situation, emotion is always the prime driver.
If you want to create influence motivate the emotional side of the buyer.
And, when it comes to tapping emotion, few things are more seductive than aspiration.
Aspiration is simply another way of describing wishes, hopes and goals – the things, situations, and feelings that people aspire to have in their lives.
Luxury brands have long played on our aspirational desire to feel rich and pampered like the young, wealthy, beautiful players in their ads. Get rich quick marketers know that a good rags to riches, anyone can do it story will get readers to whip out their wallets faster than any other device.
So, as I said, this secret can be used to educate and manipulate, but marketers that understand the power of aspiration can use it to help prospects and customers come to a clearer understanding of the benefits of their products while gently catering to the needs of both the logical and emotional side of buying.
Below is my 3-step formula for telling your story with aspiration.
This formula is just as effective in a sales letter as it is on the home page of your web site. It’s simply a way to put your reader’s desires into an explanation of your business offerings. Used authentically, it is the most effective form of education.
1) Set the table
The first order of business is to let the reader know that you understand them and their situation. You get the challenges they are facing because you’ve been down their path a million times. The use of stories to illustrate this is one of the most powerful ways to attract a reader’s attention.
2) Paint a hopeful picture
Now that you’ve established some common ground, let them hold the puppy. Paint a picture of how it could be. Help them come inside the story so they can build what it will look like once they have what they desire, once they get the problem fixed. Help them imagine a better world.
3) Provide the answer
If you have the product or service that will allow them to realize this better view, and you do because that’s the point, now is the time to let them in on how, when, and why you have just what they want and need. If you’ve taken the time to thoroughly cast the previous two steps your reader should be warmed and ready to act on this part.
Nowhere is this post did I intend to suggest that you use this powerful tool to manipulate someone untruthfully. What I am suggesting is that in the competitive world of business, drawing on one’s aspirations is a crucial way to differentiate your message.