Have you ever wondered why some ads were simply more appealing to you than others? Why you throw away most of your junk mail but stop to read others? Why you skim over some headlines but stop to read some?
In his book “CA$HVERTISING: How to Use More than 100 Secrets of Ad-Agency Psychology to Make Big Money Selling Anything to Anyone”, author Drew Eric Whitman explores all of these questions and dozens of other advertising tricks and techniques to show you how you can do a better job of marketing.
One of the central themes of CA$HVERTISING is that anyone could use the strategies presented in this book and they would be more affective than most ad agencies out there. The unfortunate fact, Whitman states, is that most advertising is garbage because it fails to appeal to our basic needs and interests.
What We Really Want:
The reason some ads tend to be better than others is because they appeal to what Whitman refers to as “The Life Force 8”. Basically, humans are biologically programmed with the following eight desires:
1. Survival, enjoyment of life, life extension
2. Enjoyment of food and beverages
3. Freedom from fear, pain, and danger
4. Sexual companionship
5. Comfortable living conditions
6. To be superior, winning, keeping up with the Joneses
7. Care and protection of loved ones
8. Social approval
These basic desires trump any of our learned behaviors. If you can write your ads and copy to appeal to any combination of these desires, the more your audience will become interested in the product or service.
Want to know the secret to great advertising? Sure you do! Want me to tell you what it is? You probably do! Why do I keep asking you questions? This is one of the tricks that Whitman presents. It’s called creating an open-loop. What is an open-loop? When you ask a question, your brain naturally has to close the loop by either figuring it out or continuing to read until the answer is found. Want to know another thing that’s interesting? Okay, that’s enough of that …
Over half of the book is 41 actionable techniques that Whitman gives you for selling anything to anyone. The following is a quick summary of a few of those tips:
• Use short, simple words
• Present benefits, not features
• Don’t make your ad cute or clever. Put the biggest benefit in the headline.
• Long copy outsells short copy
• Be specific about the product or service
• 12-point Arial and Serif fonts do the best
• Ask a lot of questions
• Provide proof
• Provide powerful visual adjectives
• Direct mental movies
• Use ads with faces
• Bigger ads do better
• And many, many more
The Bottom Line:
CA$HVERTISING reads with the ease and speed of fiction novel while managing to jam-pack tons of useful psychology research and information. It is extremely informative, easy to understand, and provides you with techniques you can start using right away. Give it a read!
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