The 5 Most Persuasive Words in the English Language

The 5 Most Persuasive Words in the English Language

Reader Comments (182)

    • Not too sure if your prescriptions (which do make sense to me) are universally applicable, especially as regards the words ‘free’ and ‘new’. For some audiences in the UK and Ireland these two words can have negative connotations. ‘Free’, for example can be associated with ‘shoddy’ or ‘valueless’ or ‘they wouldn’t be giving it away for free if it was any good’; while ‘new’ can give the impression that the product is ‘untested’.

      • Paul,

        I wouldn’t have agreed with you but last year a friend put an ad for free poodle puppies in the paper and didn’t get one response. She then put in an ad to sell them for $100 each and they were gone in a week.

        • Lisa, that goes back to the piece on understanding why these words work and using them in the right situations. For example, a free ebook is a nice benefit that captivates my attention. However, free puppies makes me think there’s probably something heinously wrong with them. A dog is such a long term valued investment that it almost doesn’t seem right to acquire one for free, which sparks suspicion and mistrust

  1. You presented some interesting research here because it is fascinating to learn how we are converted.

    I don’t write persuasive copy, but I will start using some these words more often in my blogging.

    Perhaps I can use this type of language to help persuade more people to comment.

    • Iain,

      I’m in the same boat as you, lacking persuasive copy. I also enjoyed seeing the psychology behind how we make decisions and are converted to the message.

      Darin

    • Thanks Iain!

      I would also add that you ARE writing persuasive copy, even if you don’t write sales pages, because any business related writing will at *least* have the simple goals of getting people to read all the way through and then take some sort of action when they’re finished.

      So give yourself some credit. πŸ˜‰

      • Gregory,

        Thanks for the support.

        You are right. Business writing is persuasive writing, It revolves around persuading your boss, or persuading a colleague, and not selling a product per se. Selling your boss on an idea is converting a lead I guess.

        Perhaps I feel am not writing persuasive copy, but in reality I am.

        Again, great work.

  2. Gregory,

    A surprising piece that is nicely done, and I notice that you model the strategies nicely in your own writing, with “you need,” for example. “You” in the number one position was especially surprising since it counters everything we’ve been taught in other types of writing. Teachers always scold when if you adopt the second person, but what you say makes perfect sense in engaging the reader. As a university English professor, unfortunately, I still have to teach this because all of the other professors while criticize the use of “you.” I guess it all depends on your purpose in writing, the audience’s needs and expectations.

    The others were less surprising except “because,” which struck me as unusual at first. However, you make clear how the word establishes the significance of the message for the reader. These are all things that we are not normally conscious of, and therefore very helpful to consider. Thank you.

    Darin

    • I don’t remember where or explicitly what, but I recently read an article that commented on writing as taught in school as being suitable only for the academic community. The gist was that this ‘formal’ writing didn’t actually communicate with the world outside academia and that an ‘informal’ style that used contractions and other speech-like forms did a better job with sales, instructional material, etc.

      • Amki,

        I do not doubt it, and the battle is often fought between the sciences and humanities in higher education. The sciences tend to be prescriptive with language and writing, wanting to freeze academic language in time while the humanities lean towards the descriptive (a little bit), believing that languages change over time. The main objective is to communicate your purpose and message to an audience effectively.

        The real difficulty lies in determining where the boundaries are drawn. With too much freedom, communication is hindered, but with excessive restriction comes the scene as you describe it. I like the approach taken in Gregory’s article where he focuses strictly on his purpose, message, and reader.

        Thanks for your insight , Amki,

        Darin

    • Great points Darin, really appreciate your thoughts.

      I would clarify on “You” just a bit: it obviously isn’t appropriate for certain styles of writing, but in this instance I actually use “You” in reference to the self, that is, your *name* is actually one of the most important words in your own mind.

      • Hey, thank you for the follow up and clarification, Gregory. It’s great when bloggers participate in the conversation! Looking forward to reading more of your writing.

  3. I thought I was all high and mighty because I read Cialdini (by the way – it’s the first time I’ve seen him being mentioned on a blog, you have my respect for this one). But I was only using the first three words, so thanks for the help. I always enjoy the down-to-earth, no-bull**** way in which you write articles. It makes it much easier to remember the pieces of information you give out. Keep it up! πŸ™‚

  4. Great stuff! I’d like to nominate a sixth word: SAVE. When people are buying something, they’re often more interested in getting a good deal than paying a low price, and SAVE implies that they are indeed getting a deal. People also like to save things other than money, like time and effort. Do you have any research supporting the power of SAVE?

    Thanks for a very insightful post!

    • Really like this one John.

      I like it so much that I think I’ll have to look around for some research on the subject!

      That’s the best part about citing research in my opinion, not to break new ground, but to verify things we already suspect, a la:

      β€œNormal science does not aim at novelty but at clearing up the status quo. It discovers what it expects to discover.” – Thomas Kuhn

      I”ll get back to you if I find anything. πŸ™‚

  5. Good stuff Gregory. Interesting point on the danger of free attracting the wrong kind of customer. I’m sure the 80/20 rule applies here.

    I also like the words “check”, “how”, “why”, “try” and “value”. They can certainly be persuasive.

    • This is very true, in fact in our e-Book I cover the importance of urgency (and follow-up instructions) that cites some interesting research on the matter. You should check it out πŸ˜‰

  6. Just expanding on the word ‘you’ a bit further, it is particularly effective when used with certain simple (but also powerful) verbs, e.g.
    you’ll have
    you’ll get
    you’ll save (as mentioned in the comment above)
    you’ll find
    you’ll discover

    • Kevin –

      I might add that from a sub-conscious perspective, the contraction you’ll implies you will have in the future…

      A better word would be to put them into the present tense, such as “you have” or “you get”… present tense will allow themselves to visualize already owning the product, and mentally they will already own the proverbial set of keys to the car, making it that much easier for them to plop down money

      Matt

  7. FREE
    I’m starting to get suspicious of that word. I’ve jumped through hoops only to determine that “free” meant:
    – Free 7-day limited trial
    – Free to register and look at titles but accessing anything costs money
    – EXTREMELY limited access. I wanted to convert a 166-page PDF and went to a “free” site. After giving all of my contact info and doing the confirmation email, I converted the file and … oops … “free” means 3 pages. My other 163 pages would have cost me about $10. I was irritated by then that I left the site and blocked the domain fomr ever coming up in future Google searches.

    I don’t chase free things because I’m cheap. Often I have legit interest in something and the marketing just irritates me because they’re being slimy.

    Marketers need to be judicious about what they call “free” because consumers are learning to put bogus or even offensive data into online forms just to peek over the wall and see if the marketer is really delivering what they are touting. Now, what good is the data that’s been collected?

    • Absolutely agree — it all has to be in context. If you’re in a context of providing solid value with content + you’re getting good word of mouth over social platforms, “Free” is something your audience will feel they can trust. But all of these classic persuasive power words are used extensively by businesses that are dodgy or spammy, as well.

      “Free” will feel trustworthy to your audience when they know they can trust you, in other words. πŸ™‚

      • Developing trust! YESSSSS!
        I think this is more important than the 5 Most Persuasive Words. So many marketers are abusing these words. Yes, there are studies showing that the words work. But will they work in the long run?

        If you look up ‘banner blindness’ is shows a habit that people have for consciously and subconsciously being blind to ads. We’ve been trained. Ads not only try to sell to us, they also have a history of being associated with malware, pop-up storms, endless redirects, etc.

        SImilarly, we can be trained to be suspicious of words like free and instantly. We might be “persuaded” but then we can be “trained” to click on something and stay there long enough to determine there’s something useful or just bait to build their list and load users into an auto-responder.

        Marketers are going to have to do more to cultivate trust. This will ensure that the persuasive words remain persuasive or, they can turn into warning flags.

      • Also, it wasn’t brought up that maybe the reason the $.15 sold over the $.01 is perceived value.

        What would happen if Hershey raised their prices to $.15 or even $.30? Some people, like myself, like to pay extra for the good stuff. So if something is more expensive there can be more perceived value…

        πŸ™‚

  8. Gregory –

    A well formed story, and your final 2 points highlight my own – that you made this an interesting exercise to practice putting these words together into a sentence or two, which is exactly what I did as I posted this to facebook… I used all 5 words in two sentences, that will become clear to my friends after they read it.

    As I started your article, the first book I thought of was “How to win friends and Influence people”, our names are our most important power word, and your tie in with mailing lists was spot on with that.

    Thanks for sharing such a succinct and insightful article.

  9. Something positive about a negative…not exactly what you asked for:

    It always intrigues me that ‘need’ is NOT a trigger word. While it is always emphasized that buying is an emotional process based on desire and not logic, it seems to me that need would be at least equally motivational emotionally.

    I can’t exactly put my finger on it, but I think that says something about my own logical processes. πŸ˜‰

  10. I’d like to nominate ‘GET’. Because everybody wants something. As always, a very helpful post, Brian. Happy Holidays!

  11. The analysis around the word free was really interesting. I’d like to think that I’m smart enough to see through the marketing when it comes to free stuff, but either I’m really naive about how I really think, or I’m in the minority. I don’t tend to offer free stuff because I think that people tend to see through it. but maybe it’s just me! Might make me reconsider making free offers in future.

    • Good points Dave, but I think we become susceptible to these words during situations where they aren’t directly on our minds.

      For instance, reading this post, these words seem “too obvious” to be effective, but out and about in the real world when we aren’t consciously thinking about them, they’re able to influence us.

  12. A surprisingly short post for you, Greg, but just as excellent as ever!

    We recently started using customer names in our email blasts. I don’t have any numbers yet, but we are definitely seeing more conversions. Getting intimate works, plain and simple.

    Personally, I like using “right now” in my copy. I use it mostly because I know it usually gets me to buy, so hey, it should work for others! And based on the psychology behind “instantly,” it all makes more sense. πŸ™‚

    • Mandy!

      Agree 100%, I always try to attach some form of “time limit” to actions I’d like for people to take. Given people’s reluctance to come back to things a second time, any language that urges action within the next few minutes is key. πŸ™‚

  13. I’m not sure I agree with the use of a person’s name – in advertising copy, it seems manipulative to me when I see it. Especially if it’s in an email from someone who I know has no idea who the hell I am (and that goes double if they’ve spelled my name wrong). But then, I’m in marketing, so I’m probably a tougher audience. People in general are more cynical and aware of marketing “tricks” than they used to be, though. It’d be interesting to see how some of those stats have changed over time!

    • Laurie, that’s why we don’t personalize the emails at Copyblogger — our audience of marketers sees that and thinks, “Ad.” Normal people are less likely to do that. πŸ™‚

      • Our target audience are mechanics, and used to be video store owners (still is, but less these days).

        We’ve had people respond to our emails as if we’d sent them directly, so I agree marketers are more skeptical. We also noticed (and we never figured out why), that the mechanics (or their assistants) tend to post correct info including the phone number, whereas the video store people gave us bogus info. Perhaps we’re saying something wrong on the download page. I’ll be checking into that after this article, Thanks.

  14. Hi Gregory, great post. I’m a huge fan of using “you” in copy. Why? Because it’s the equivalent of using someone’s first name in a mass communication. Yes, actually using their first name would provide a better result, but using “you” as a first name alternative gets nearly the same results.

  15. Very interesting article and well researched. Here’s a tip to make your chocolate graphics even better:
    15 cents should be $.15 or 15Β’ (.15Β’ means 15/100 or 3/20 of 1 cent).
    Ditto for the other amounts. Thanks!

  16. While using certain words is important I think its more important if you speak with conviction as people will pay more attention to what you say.

    • Very true! In fact there is research on things like confidence + persuasion, and many studies point to conviction playing a HUGE role in persuasive speaking and arguments.

  17. Ian,
    Thanks! I found this article to be helpful with the work I need to do on a daily basis. Writing persuasively is so difficult because you don’t get the chance to listen before making your argument.

  18. Oh, how I fought the “you need” in a Tweet the other day.

    Days went by and that hashtag my name and what I needed to do rolled around in my head. Finally and against my will my curiosity got the best of me. I clicked the website. When the “you need” is hard wired to my core interest and there is not even the slightest whiff of spam anywhere to be found, I was a goner. You’ve got to hate that. Or, you’ve got to figure out how to use it. Your call.

    P.S. The person blew it though. You get to the site and it is miles away from the implication and someone just burned a bridge. The one that leads me to take ” you need” seriously. It is like a vaccination. Next time the bug has a harder time. Or, no shot at all.

  19. I agree with your list of words if our goal is to sell. I’ve taught advertsing and understand the basics of writing great headlines and copy. As a blogger, I’m creative and try to be sincere. I shudder to feel like I have to use advertising tactics to simply get more traffic, but I guess it comes with the territory.

    • I think it’s very possible to be persuasive and sincere at the same time Dan. It’s sometimes tough when we feel like we may be going “too far”, but as long as everything is honest, it’s okay to utilize this information to get people to take action.

  20. All good ideas and reminders. I too am suspicious of “free” yet really like “because” as folks like an explanation.

  21. Thanks Greg. Great post. I saw four of the five coming but I have to admit I would never have picked ‘Because’. But it makes sense. Now to make sure that I keep these words in the back of my mind when writing. Cheers!

  22. Your piece is not just full of persuasive copy; it has a very persuasive headline too. I spotted it in Twitter and immediately wanted to know what those 5 words were – and I read right through to the end. In fact, I have even forgotten why I went to Twitter in the first case. Nice article πŸ˜‰

    Will πŸ™‚

  23. Amazon once ran a promotion – free delivery when you make a 2nd book purchase. This was very successful in every country apart from France. The marketing department looked into it and found that the program had been slightly altered in France. The French offer charged 20 cents for shipping when customers made a 2nd purchase. Monetarily, the promotions are almost indistinguishable but the 20c offer did not perform…it just doesn’t have the power of FREE. http://www.webcontentwriter.co.uk/website-copywriter-reveals-2-most-powerful-web-words/

  24. Indivdually, each of these words appeals to a certain kind of person. If we use the Eisenberg Modes of Persuasion as a guide, we can assign each to a different mode.

    “You” – Humanists are relationship oriented. When your voice shifts from “We” and “our company” and you speak to them in the first person, it feels more human — and more Humanistic.

    “Free” – This word appeals to the Spontaneous reader. These visitors are just looking for an excuse to take action.

    “Because” – Methodicals want to understand the details. They make decisions deliberately and logically. Credible proof is important.

    “Instantly” – This also appeals to our Spontaneous reader, who wants immmediate gratification.

    “New” – This appeals to the Competitive, who wants to know what will make them better. New technologies, new versions, new looks get their attention.

    So, two of the words are very Spontaneous, and we tend to act spontaneously when we’ve decided to buy something. So, “Free” and “Instantly” are probably good “bottom of the funnel” words.

  25. I’m going to start using “because” more when I’m in a rush. I think I’ll still get scolded, especially in the grocery store line in Philly.

  26. Thanks Greg (can I call ya Greg?)

    It’s cool to read WHY those words we use in our copy actually work – and why sometimes they can be used incorrectly.

  27. Great article and great feedback.

    I liked your action items at the end, asking for comments as well as offering your “10 Ways…” with a great reason. I’m going to use this reason with some of my offers. (Hope that’s OK)

    A number of months ago I felt that I was writing too much copy with “you” in it and decided to switch to “we” instead.

    Based on your article, I think I will go back to these articles and compare my reader engagement. It will be interesting to see if there is a difference.

  28. When you’re venturing into “because” land, try also using “so that” so that you can easily describe cause/effect relationships that enhance the persuasiveness of a message.

  29. I would like to politely disagree Gregory my man.

    Five more persuasive words:

    – Freeze!
    – Bomb!
    – Duck!
    – Run!
    – Three! (after dad had already said “….1…. 2…..”)

    πŸ™‚

    Great post bro. Always enjoy your research.

    Rams

  30. You can also use the word ESPECIALLY to justify a call to action. Unlike because,you can use ESPECIALLY to confirm your reader’s justification for wanting a particular product or service.
    Thank you for the practical advice and theory,especially the referenced academic studies.

  31. You nailed it! A very good blog on the subject of writing persuasive texts.
    I would like to add that these words, in combination ith the three modalities that people perceive the wworld surrounding them is even more powerful.
    So like for people who think (mostly) in terms of pictures: Imaging yourself being…
    For those who act based upon their (gut?) feelings: You can feel yourself …
    For those that think in terms of words: You can hear the apraisal from your friends now that you…

    Of course, combining these makes a post for all readers interesting

  32. Hello, my two cents, or should I say my $.02? … πŸ™‚

    Great article. Way to put 5 great topics into one short and to-the-point blog.

    One phrase I’m trying is “CLICK HERE” and seeing if that works. From what I have learned, some people like to be told what to do. You lead them through the process while giving the impression that all choices are made by YOU. I thought it was a great comment about how in English class we are taught not to use “You” or “I” but to write academically. I guess it really depends on your audience and the search criteria they are using.

    I know one word that really helps. When I was reading, I thought the word “Warning” was one of those words you were talking about, but it wasn’t even part of the article.

    Another word is “Help”. People like to help. “Please help me”, “Could you help me?”

    And as far as “Free” goes, I’ve heard that “Free” can be a bad thing too because it lowers the perceived value. Yeah someone wants something free, but when the person has to spend money, are they going to buy the Hershey Kisses or the other kind? I would have liked to see the conversions of the people after the test, whether or not they became customers or bought anything afterwards.

    Another thing I would personally like to see is if someone is telling me to click on a link, I want to know exactly what I’m getting myself into. If not, I assume they are hiding something because they won’t tell me what the hell is going to happen once I click that link.

    As one person says, “Free” usually means “Free for 7 days, then it’s $39.99 a month” and they don’t mention how difficult it is to get through to customer service to cancel. Or all the other assortment of not-so-free sites.

    • I agree with “Click Here” when it comes to the web, I’ve tested that on multiple occasions and an “action phrase” like that almost always outperforms other words.

  33. Well-researched article. Using simple language is the way to write. Now I agree more with #5 because before I always replace it with the word “improved”. But then it’s the right timing that makes these words most persuasive. Great article.

    • Eh, I would say they go hand-in-hand on many occasions. The persuasive element here is the *novelty* of whatever you’re describing, and “improved” often implies that something about the product is new.

  34. Found this really interesting. Most of them I can see how they work. For me the first one can be a complete turn off!! If my name is anywhere other than in the titles then I switch off. My Mum used to put my name in a sentence as a put down or to let me know I was in the wrong – it still has the same connotation!!

    • True, but a lot of testing with personal communication (read: email marketing) has shown that names often increase open-rates and engagement in many instances. I remember a MailChimp article that showed exactly that, so it’s something to consider.

  35. Your title totally drew me in because I wanted to instantly know those five words that would be new to me . . . for free!! Aren’t I clever? I used all five words in that sentence! Seriously, great and helpful post with terrific research and backing added in. Can’t wait to grab that free report too. πŸ™‚

  36. awesome and informative stuff here.. Love to read it.. Normally, i will incorporate this word in my article: I, me, you etc.. and it is worked, my blog looks more alive..

  37. I imagined the word “FREE” would be at the top. I also knew about “because” and “you”. The word “instantly” is a new idea. I’ll try and fit that into my writing…

      • But be careful. Using these words to draw people in, and then not delivering anything, that can hurt a person’s reputation and train people on what to ignore.

        Yes. We get one chance to make an impression. Don’t miss an opportunity, but don’t ruin the experience either.

  38. Who amongst us can resist the alluring nature of the word “FREE”? Posts like this are why I love Copy Blogger. The info on here is great and has really helped me improve my writing over the years. No matter how long you’ve been writing, there’s always something new to learn.

    • Lots of us can resist the word “free.” We’re being trained to be suspicious. See some of the earlier conversation.

      Free can get someone’s attention. “Free” can also be the first step toward “I should have known it was too good to be true. Lots of “free” software is revealed to be packaged with adware and hijacks your homepage, and claims “in order to provide this to you for free, we have to pull these shenanigans.”

  39. “Free”, “New” and “You” were quite obvious but didn’t expect “Because” and “Instantly” in the top 5 list. I expected “Now” word.

    • If I had to go with a 6th “bonus word”, I’d definitely envision it being something like “Now”, I should look to see if there is any solid research on that! πŸ™‚

  40. These are specially great for writing ads, where you have so little time to grab someone’s attention, not to mention the million other ads competing for those same eyeballs. Great, useful article. Anyone looking to improve their copywriting skills should spend some time learning all the “power” words that can dramatically improve engagement and clickthrough rates.

  41. I hardly ever write copy. Most often I just correct it. Coincidentally however, I just helped someone write copy for an advertorial of sorts today. I think it’s important to say “we will” as opposed to “we can.” “We can” just sounds too much like “we may,” while “we will” sounds more certain. Agree?
    Loved the information….thank you!

    • I agree 100% Joline, in fact, I’d go even further and say that great copy should eliminate any phrases that showcases an alternative (“I think that…”, etc.)

  42. About 20 years ago i was working for a bank selling balance transfers, which basically is trying to get people to switch all of their debt to us for a lower interest rate. I was doing a terrible job up until the guy next to me said to start using the phrase. It’s a no brainer. To my shock and amazement I more than doubled my closing rate with this stupid phrase. I guess no one wants to feel like they have no brain…LOL

  43. The world will be pleased to know I’ve ordered that Cialdini book.

    Everywhere I go recently that book is recommended. Can’t wait!

    Great post – I loved the Chocolate study, that’s fascinating.

  44. Gregory – YOU did a great job with this article BECAUSE it INSTANTLY helped me idetify specific ways to make my copy more persuasive. I hope I can reciprocate in the near future with NEW ideas for you in my next blog post on Harvard Business Review. Thank you. I find thank you and reciprocity to be attractive words as well.

  45. I do agree that FREE is a great in attracting attention. But over the years, I do notice that FREE attracts the wrong prospects as well. Now I actually charge a nominal fee for all the workshops to capture a better qualified audience.

  46. From my media training – “Actually” is very powerful. It’s a good word to use instead of “yes” or “no” to pivot questioning

  47. I’m not sure about the “because” but You, free, instantly and New are difintely words that gets my heart racing. Like most people, I like to hear my name and see my name in big lites. Who doesn’t love free? Only thing about free is that it can sometimes devalue valuable things. We take things for granted when they’re free. Like mostly people today, we want everything and we want it now. Instantly ain’t fast enough sometimes. Definitely love new. Been buying used stuff so long only new will due for me now.

  48. I read a blog a year ago where the writer had done tests to his “follow me on Twitter” link to see what compelled the most people to follow him. He ended up with “You should follow me on Twitter”. I wonder how much the “You” had to do with that being the most compelling version.

    Now I also wonder how much more compelling it would have been if he had had a “because” in there.

  49. I have always loved that Cialdini experiment example.thanks for the reminder….I’m in the middle of sending out some postcards and I think I will use this great article as the basis to do some testing…thanx

  50. Two words keep popping up in my mind: “please” and “thanks”. What strikes me is that I believe these two words are very powerful, but mostly when spoken! In writing, these are overused or expected. Interesting the difference between both ways of communicating

  51. A word I keep thinking of is “beta”. Many people like the idea of being the first one to try something new. I know I do. Giving people access to something prior to the “general public” makes them feel special and will likely lead to brand loyalty and engagement.

  52. Wow, this list was put together well. I still can’t believe because is that persuasive, but the logic behind it makes sense. I could have guessed the other 4. Great post keep up the good work, Daniel

  53. I always think when I see things like: “These are selling like hotcakes. Only 5 left. Hurry. Don’t miss out!”. This makes me think: “If they’re selling so fast and furious, why are they so bent on urging us to buy?”. They don’t need to!

  54. Not for headlines, but within copy, it is important for me to use the word LIKE somewhere in there for two reasons. The first is such usage almost always is in an analogy, and anologies work well in persuasive writing. Analogies are like pictures, they convey more than the words they are comprised of. The second is that within the analogy, I always try and put the word like in front of what I am persuading about. For example, if the new “what-a-car-mobile” is something I am trying to pursuade some to take interest in, I could say “Seeing a double rainbow is for visual pleasure much like the what-a-car-mobile is for driving pleasure. The embedded secondary statement that speaks to the subconscious is ‘like the what-a-car-mobile”.

  55. As a Public Speaking Coach and Trainer, I teach 4 of these to my students! I have started Copywriting more and more to learn more about persuasive speaking! Thank you for the tips!

  56. This is a fabulous blog post.

    ‘You’ is a very powerful word that stands out to me above all others. ‘You’ creates a personal relationship between a reader and the content that they are reading.

    Content writing often misses out in creating a relationship with the reader.

    Without that relationship there will be no engagement and your content will not be valuable

  57. I use superlatives to make products and services seem more attractive. Saying something is lovely or beautiful, amazing or remarkable, is powerful stuff.

  58. The word “because” is definitely an important word to implement when using persuasive language. Especially when you’re trying to get your kids to do stuff like clean up their room and things like that. Great post by the way!

  59. Gregory,

    I can’t help but feeling a little sleezball knowing these psychological tricks and using them to get conversions.

    I keep reminding myself that I am offering something really valuable, something that I would like to give away for free. And, even am giving away for free to a certain extent, or at least will be when I publish my free report “Busy People Get Healthy (In Half the Time)”

    You should check out my site and let me know how your brain reacts because, I would really value your opinion. (There’s a real reason!)

    Thanks for a great article,

    Alexis

  60. From my experience, while “You” is indeed deserving its spot, an even better one is a person’s own name.
    We all hear our name from the very first days of our lives – we are conditioned to pay attention whenever that word is used.

    Even when walking on the street, if you hear someone saying out loud your name:
    “Gregory!” … “you” would turn your head “instantly”, not “because” it is something “new” but simply “because” you are trained to do so from way back, during your childhood.

    The attention-grabbing word “free” is an acquired taste, though; it comes in your life almost at the same time (parents provide you with anything in “free” mode) but you come to value it properly only much later… πŸ™‚

    Cheers,
    ~Steve

  61. Thank you for making me smile in a VERY hectic week. Of course, you are right. But I write historical fiction and while ultimately I’m selling a product, something in me rebels/resists using outright marketing strategies such as those outlined here.

    BUT I do want to reach my audience. So I’ve got my toe in and appreciate very much this NEW and FREE information you’ve made so INSTANTLY available BECAUSE you have helped me. Thank YOU!

  62. because you asked me to I’m going to instantly give you my new opinion, for free!

    When I started blogging about yoga I quickly realized that my average competitor was writing a lot of blah blah blah posting photos of themselves in insanely difficult yoga poses, talking about their “beautiful” kids and supportive spouse. yawn. Even I don’t want to read about that, and I’m a professional yoga teacher!

    So I started talking about “you” and things that might be of interest to “you”. Assuming that the average yoga practitioner is smart, green conscious, politically savvy I started instantly started blogging on new topics like big pharma, organic foods, and relationships because, you know, people like to read about interesting things – not just “me” and how my day went when I worked out.

    My readership really grew! Stop by and read me some day, would love to meet you

  63. Thank You Gregory,

    Simple and definitely meaningful tips. As Dale Carnegie said many years ago “the most important sound to a person is the sound of their own name”. A challenge though with digital communication, eg. communicating with parents via Facebook to help one another, the hardest job in the world with little to no prior preparation and loaded with exhaustion, frustration and loneliness.

    I took a few great tips from your article, any others would be greatly appreciated by this parent and others ?

    Thank you again all the way from Down Under.

  64. Persuasion is written and verbal and I think it’s true people like seeing their name in print, hearing it called. Persuading the brain in advertising is an awesome process when you see it unfold.

  65. I like to use the word “imagine”. I think it is a way to get people involved in the content being discussed. I suppose it is a way to try to force them to think.

    Once they are doing that, it may be possible to lead them in a certain direction by providing compelling arguments, research results, and information.

    What do you think to this approach?

      • I should have mentioned it in the previous post, what an excellent and informative article that was. Certainly some food for thought there. I will keep this in mind when writing content for my site.

        Thanks so much.

  66. Love this article. I’ve bought so many marketing tools, plugins, themes, etc. and most, if not all of these persuasive words were in the copy that sold me.

  67. Great article really helpful for getting into your customers head and there thought processes. Very interesting and helpful.
    Thank you,

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