Read Part 1. Now, we continue our discussion on the Psychology of Activated Selling …
Use these Psychological Activators in your sales letters, blog posts, newsletters and more. You can use them to get more subscribers, get sales, get referrals … or whatever else you need to grow your business.
Sales Activator #4: Be Provocative
Provocation is one of the most misunderstood Activators. No one knows how to do this right.
You have to be careful within your provocation; but those who provoke with wisdom win.
To provoke means doing one of two things:
Provoke Negative Emotions
You are either capturing attention by stirring emotions of anger, hostility, fury, madness, irritation and the like.
Provoke Sexual Arousal
You are deliberately arousing sexual desire to capture or hold an attention point.
Hugh Hefner gave a press release last week indicating Playboy would no longer feature nudity.
Not at all. There was a time that nudity was provocative for selling many different kinds of magazines. For example, the most beautiful or celebrated models could be paid from $25,000 to $2,000,000 to pose sans clothes for Playboy.
It’s not provocative in 2016.
Don’t misunderstand. Nudity still is provocative, but not in the context of sales of hard copy magazines.
You don’t need to buy Playboy to see the most beautiful women in the world in 2016. You simply google Lucy Pinder, Keeley Hazell, Tessa Fowler or whoever – and there you go.
No physical product can compete with that.
And, don’t misunderstand this! Sensual arousal is provocative in many contexts.
The Vegas shows featuring guys from Australia strutting on stage in Vegas will never go out of vogue. Similarly, the Hooters Girl working her way through college will always have a job. And they do their jobs beautifully.
In various contexts – arousing desire, particularly sexual desire, will always be effective.
Importantly, sensual desire is not always desirable for capturing or holding attention. In many contexts, it is far more valuable to be provocative in a different way.
Emotional Provocation for Capturing Attention
Imagine a couple having a big emotional argument, “a fight” if you will.
There are a several different kinds of arguments, a couple of which are helpful. And a couple of which are neutral for relationships. And then a couple of which are disastrous.
Two types are PROVOCATIVE.
“Bill, I think you are wrong. The fastest way to Chicago is to take 94 not 41.” Debating back and forth is about prediction here. The people could become ticked off at each other, but nothing is being provoked. It’s a “who’s right” kind of thing.
To be sure, these kind of predictive disagreements can cause irritation and downright anger, but there is no negative INTENTION. There is no provocation that makes it difficult (or unreasonable) to walk away from.
So what is provocative in a relationship context?
“Do you want me to start seeing other men?”
That’s provocative. It’s begging for an apocalypse, but one thing is certain – it either captures OR holds attention. Rarely will someone walk away from that question.
That provocation generates all kinds of emotions inside the recipient of the message. In selling, that kind of provocation can be as priceless as it can be devastating in a relationship.
So let’s look at EMOTIONAL PROVOCATION for the purpose of capturing, holding, or gaining agreement.
Here are phrases designed to use Emotional Provocation to capture attention and gain agreement:
Incite Their Emotion
“Are you sick of being a loser?”
“How long will you be a loser?”
In the “loser” examples, you are asking the reader/listener/viewer directly and inciting their emotions to say “NO! I will do it!”
Bond with Them to Get Agreement
“Are you stupid enough to vote Democrat (Republican) again?”
In the “Democrat” example, you are doing nothing of the kind. Here, you are provoking the reader/listener/viewer to STAND UP WITH ME AND MATCH MY ANGER/DISGUST against the bad guys.
Both kinds of provocation can be used in most sales settings.
If you are selling a lawn service …
“Are you really going to stick with the service that gave you all those weeds?”
That’s a direct “loser” challenge.
Sell Yourself Using Provocation
If you are selling yourself as a job candidate, you can gamble.
“Are you really going to hire another person because they meet some ridiculous arbitrary criteria, or are you going to hire someone who can get the job done?”
Bonus insight: This direct challenge works if they are NOT going to think about it, or if they are NOT going to huddle with other managers to make a decision.
Because you can be TOO PROVOCATIVE.
There is always a bell curve of provocation effectiveness.
You can be too milk toast and never gain attention, never hold attention and never close deals.
You can be too provocative and TURN OFF your CUSTOMER.
Note: Your customer is not the same as your VIEWER.
Who Do They Want to do Business With?
You want to market to people SIMILAR to your CUSTOMER and be provocative to the point where their ENEMY is irritated with you. People want to do business with people who are LEADERS of EMOTIONS.
In other words, “just how much more money will we blow on defense/welfare before we take down our nation?”
Here, you incite the frustration of your CUSTOMER and TURN OFF your ENEMY.
Your enemy is listening but they aren’t likely to ever buy.
Your CUSTOMER is listening and KNOWS YOU ARE RIGHT and they WANT TO BE RIGHT and on the SIDE OF RIGHT.
Provocation will sell.
Push Only Til They Bend
But don’t be stupid. Remember who your actual BUYER (The woman who does BUSINESS with you) is and do NOT go over THEIR BOUNDARY LINES. You can push limits creating BEND. You don’t want to BREAK limits with your CUSTOMERS or people SIMILAR to your customers.
Key Point: The most successful people in the world are provocative in SOME significant WAY and it is PART of their identity and YOUR IDENTIFICATION with them.
Provocative people, as I’ve mentioned before, have an audience of people that will dislike them; and the more the anti-Provocative Person speaks badly of the provocative person, the MORE power and success the provocative person will have.
Activator #5: Engage the Law of Reciprocity
The Law of Reciprocity works like this: if you give your prospects something THEY PERCEIVE as being valuable, they’ll be more likely to feel compelled to return that perceived value to you in some other way.
This “something” might be a referral, a sale, an email address, or something else of value to you.
The reason this works is because we tend to get psychologically uncomfortable when we feel like we owe someone something.
Worthy of Note: Some people have an entitlement mentality, and you could deliver valuable stuff to their door all day long and yet they’d have no feeling of appreciation for you or be compelled to create value in return for your goodness.
On the flip side, you don’t want to be a conditional giver in general. In other words, you can’t give with the expectation of receiving something back. So give freely and don’t worry about whether others are giving you anything in return. Help your prospects, even if you aren’t rewarded for it. If nothing else, this will give you a great reputation in your niche (which, in turn, will boost sales).
Let me give you a real-life example.
Let’s imagine you call up a couple friends and invite them out to dinner tonight. You take them to a really nice restaurant, and everyone enjoys appetizers, a nice meal, and even dessert. When the bill comes, you snatch it off the table and insist on paying. Your friends argue a bit – after all, this was a very nice meal – but eventually they relent and then graciously thank you for the meal.
So what happens next?
If you guessed that your friends are going to take you out for dinner some night, you’re absolutely right. If they didn’t, they’d start to feel psychologically uneasy. Their unease would grow if you did something else nice for them in the meantime, like bought them a cup of coffee or took them out to the movies. The only way they can get rid of this psychological discomfort is by returning the favor.
Listen, your prospects are the same way. If you do them a kindness, they’ll feel, on average, a compulsion to return the kindness.
The easiest way to do this is by offering a free lead magnet product, and then sending good content to your fan base, prospect list or customers.
You can also share good content on your blog and social media platforms. These simple steps will trip the reciprocity activator.
Take note …
Key Point: The key to making this work is to remind people of the Activator when you ask them for a favor.
For example: “Since I’ve given you this free video, I’d like you to do a favor for me – click this link to tell your friends about the video. They’re sure to love it just as much as you!”
See how that works? You remind people what you’ve given them, and then you ask for what you want. It’s an “I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine” sort of concept. And yep, it works like crazy to boost response rates.
The Reciprocity Secret No One Knows?
The farther in time you get from the point you gave someone your kindness, a gift, love … the less likely the other person is to respond in like kind.
This is critical because you want to engage your potential customer/client relatively SOON after engaging reciprocity.
Sales Activator 6: Be Specific
In The Psychology of Persuasion: How To Persuade Others To Your Way Of Thinking, I introduced the power of specificity to the world. I think I was the first person to really bring out this valuable tool. You do see some examples in a few successful ads prior to 1995, but I haven’t seen it discussed in any sales or academic books or literature prior to P.O.P.
SINCE 1995 and beginning about 2002, I began noticing ALL marketers of note adopting specificity. I also sadly began noticing a lot of scamsters of note use specificity and to this day THAT is a hot button I have.
Please … be honest, truthful and accurate when you use specificity.
People are always a little skeptical whenever they’re reading bold claims in ads or other content. THEY SHOULD BE. However, there are ways to reduce their skepticism and make them more likely to believe what you’re telling them. One of these ways is by being specific about your claims.
How to Use Specificity Effectively
The best way to explain this is with an example. Take a look at these two statements:
Statement 1: “You’ll find out how Joe made $5000 last month with Facebook ads, and how you can too!”
Statement 2: “You’ll find out how Joe made $5,197 last month with Facebook ads, and how you can too!”
Those statements are exactly the same, except for the dollar amount. The first one is an even $5000, whereas the second statement is very specific.
Guess which statement is more compelling?
If you guessed Statement 2, you’re right. That’s because it’s highly unbelievable that someone made exactly $5000 last month. It’s far more believable that they made $5,197. Because the claim is specific, it seems more believable.
Get Real Specific
This doesn’t just work for dollar amounts – it works for most anything where you can be specific about a number. This includes:
Length of time. For example, “31 days” is more specific than “one month.”
Weight. “Jack lost 63.5 pounds” is more specific and believable than, “Jack lost 60 pounds.”
Other dimensions such as length and width. “The plants grew 13 inches tall” is more specific and believable than saying they, “grew about a foot.”
Number. For example, “15,955 subscribers” is more specific and believable than “about 16,000 subscribers.”
So you get the point. Whenever you can be specific about a number or any other detail, do so because people are more likely to consider and act on specific claims.
Next week, we conclude Seven Psychological Activators to Increase Sales.
Decision Point–Discover a System of Decision Making That Will Clear the Way to Success
Next Course begins December 1, 2015
If you’ve ever taken one of my e-courses, yes, it’s like them! This E-course lasts 7 weeks and has more than 20 modules. You set your own schedule – you don’t have to be “in class” at any particular time each day. You get VIP access to a secret portion of the web site, and can log in at any time.
If you could point to one word, to one factor, to one element or cause of what happens to you in your life, it is decision.
Maybe you have been experiencing one or more of the following:
Moving is always tough but when there are more than one person’s job or one person going to a school that they love and the possibility of leaving friends behind makes for what many consider an impossible decision. What do YOU decide? How do you decide?
Your investments have done OK but your total income saved for your future is terrible. There are a lot of options you’ve been told about but you really don’t know what to do. What will you decide? How will you decide?
You are a manager at your company and only have enough budget to pursue one product line. You can choose between an almost sure thing with a very modest return or a riskier proposal that could make you a superstar. What do you decide? How do you make the decision?
You’re on your way home for the holidays. You get stuck in bad weather and are put up at a local hotel. In the bar that night a beautiful woman strikes up a conversation with you and she has offered you the key to her room. What will you decide?
A relative lives with you. They take advantage of you but you can’t let them go because you don’t know what will happen to them. What is the right thing to do and will that thing be what you decide? How will you decide?
An elderly relative lives with you. They can’t take care of themselves any more. You hate the idea of a nursing home or “worse.” You also want “a life.” What will you decide to do?
Your wife is two months pregnant. A test reveals the baby is going to be born with a disease that will require your 24/7 care for the rest of your life. She decides she wants to keep the baby. But you haven’t made your decision. What will you decide to do? How will you make the decision?
Your home has a horrible defect that you can cover easily in the selling process and the defect almost certainly won’t be discovered for years. Revealing it will reduce the price of your home $100,000. What will you decide to do? How will you decide?
You can stay at your present job which you really don’t like that much and live on a predictable but very modest income or you can pursue a venture that has about a 70% chance of success and if it succeeds, you would double your income. What do you decide to do? How do you decide?
“Just wanted to thank you. I took your Decision Point E-Course earlier this year, and have put the ideas into practice. I knew I wanted to leave my job, but didn’t seem able to decide when, how, etc. Well, using what I learned from you, I was able to make a very definitive decision about NOW being the time. I feel great about the timing in my life now and at peace with the decisions I made. This means so much to me! Mahalo nui loa (thank you so very much).”
You’ve been thinking of getting a divorce but you’re just not sure. There are other fish in the sea but you wonder if you can still compete? Can you do better? What about the kids? What do you DECIDE? How do you decide?
You are involved in a custody battle for your children. One of the kids is misbehaving terribly and you don’t know whether you should spank them or discipline them firmly. The result could easily effect the results of the custody hearing. What do you do? How do you decide?
Two women have taken a liking to you. You date them both for some time. They both begin to talk about moving in and a permanent relationship. One is the kind of person you feel comfortable with and would be easy to love. The other is 10 years younger and is celebrity beautiful. Unfortunately she knows it and enjoys being the center of attention. What do you decide? How do you decide?
And those are just a few of the decisions that face real people every day. Decisions that people are forced into and have no idea what to do or how to do it.
THIS COURSE shows you how to make ALL of the decisions above.
And it’s important to note, that the right decision easily can be different from person to person. Knowing how to evaluate THAT is crucial to everything you will do…but no one ever does it….
“As a psychotherapist, I work in the minefield of decision-making and I can tell you that making good decisions is critical to happiness, success and relationships. Kevin Hogan’s course covers the terrain of decision-making with his usual thoroughness, candor and relevance. Kevin is always ahead of the game because of his extensive research, vast and varied connections and sharp mind. His thinking about ‘high noon’ and light a fuse, if applied, would save many relationships and learning the concept alone is more than worth the price of admission.”
If you haven’t taken an e-course with me: an E-course with me is not like an E-course as thought of by the rest of the world. With me an E-course means you will have instruction in several media forms. Video, audio and text. There is NO specific time you must meet with me every day.
About 50% of the people who take my courses collect all the materials and work at their own pace later. The other half work with me and sometimes with other participants when necessary, on projects that are necessary to learning how to make RIGHT DECISIONS.
My courses are universally known to be challenging, results-oriented, pragmatic and show you EXACTLY how to get where you want to go.
Decision making is a function of thinking that almost 90% of people do very poorly. Most people think that if something turns out well, they made a good decision. If something turns out poorly they made a bad decision.
And that conditioning is one of the biggest reasons why people are poor decision makers.
Decision making is first and foremost about MAKING DECISIONS IN THE FIRST PLACE.
Every day, people vacillate on making changes in their lives that they KNOW are absolutely necessary, but they decide to do nothing and hope for the best, only to live a life where nothing ever changes.
This is where we begin.
Elimination of PROCRASTINATION and VACILLATION.
You will learn how to recognize situations where you are about to commit acts of self-sabotage. I’ll show you how to identify it long before it becomes an issue. I’ll show you how to crush self-sabotage so you can make a CHOICE instead of only having the ability to stay with the Status Quo.
This first week’s module alone will be worth the investment in the course.
How would you like to NEVER procrastinate again?
What would happen if you could actually MOVE in the DIRECTION that you want to, even if it is ONLY AWAY FROM WHERE YOU ARE TODAY?!
By the end of week one, you will have daily projects to do for several weeks that will almost literally beat the habits of self-sabotage and procrastination from your life.
Most people don’t know that procrastination is a habit you picked up, but it is NOT your fault.
The same is true of self-sabotage.
I will explain why, where it all started, why it happens to everyone and why it must be eradicated intentionally and with no little effort. By the END of the course, IF YOU FOLLOW the Decision Point Plan, you will have eliminated procrastination and almost all forms of self-sabotage.
I’ll explain in detail why self-sabotage is a little trickier and lurks in EVERYONE’S back yard waiting to strike. I’ll show you how to get rid of it and then prevent it so you never have to deal with it in the future.
And that is only week one! How we doin’ so far?!
Decision IS Destiny
You make decisions all the time. Generally speaking, the more decisions a person makes, the more successful they are.
The better a person is at making decisions, the more successful they are.
When you move from your old home to the home you are in now; maybe you moved because you wanted a bigger house, or to put the kids in a better school district. Maybe it was just closer to where your job is…more convenient.
And of course in the case of uprooting and moving your family, you’re talking about a lot of variables, a lot of things to consider. You’re going to find out how to make the right decision in which house to buy and where to move.
What about leaving your job for some other opportunity?
FEAR enters the picture quite clearly and because the future is seemingly unpredictable, you feel frozen or stuck as to what to do, so you immediately default to stay in your same job. But there is a way to make this decision much easier. And you’ll be pleasantly surprised when you do….
But there are also the smaller decisions of life.
There is a simple method that takes little thinking at all to make these day to day decisions.
And then there are decisions that you make that influence other people’s lives like taking a new job, going into business for yourself, moving to a new area, having a surgery that has risks involved….
How do you know what to do? Don’t worry, most people haven’t got a clue as to how to make the right decision every time, and there is a right decision to make.
Then there are Destiny Decisions…those decisions that you make that will literally determine where you are going to be in three years or five years.
These are REALLY IMPORTANT decisions. Every day I see people screwing them up as if they are no big deal.
You’ll find out a methodical system that might take a very short amount of time or significantly longer depending on circumstances. Nevertheless, you will find out exactly what to do every time.
Obviously there are plenty of Black Swan’s (unexpected random events like hurricanes and terrorism) out there to get in the way of what you want in life, but nothing you can control impacts your life more than decision.
Write that down.
Nothing you can control impacts your life more than decision.
How would life be different if you knew you were going to make the right decision, every time?
Did you know that in life, there is almost always a best decision?
What would happen if you had the method for decision making?
What would it be worth to have a simple systematic approach to decision making where the guidelines are from your head and heart?
Most people are paralyzed with uncertainty about whether they should:
Why Do People Make Bad Decisions?
And…they make bad decisions because…we all have about 8-10 areas of failure in our brain….similar experiences where you make the wrong decisions over and over again.
(Like marrying the same guy five times, dating jerks, working for idiots, saying the wrong thing at the worst time, etc. Sound familiar?)
We’ll repair all of that. (If we don’t, life will be the same tomorrow as it has been in the past….)
Did you know there is a proven way to make the right decision in each of the above choices?
For the sake of discussion, let’s assume that is correct. There IS a method you can use to make the RIGHT decision just about every time.
It doesn’t take a genius to think, “I decide to make more money,” “lose weight,” “get a better job,” “get married to perfect person x”.
KEY: Learning the process of making the right decision involves making that decision STICK, be UNYIELDING and barring a Black Swan, guaranteeing you will follow through.
Over the last 15 years we’ve been fortunate to have studied the raw information about how to make laser beam accurate decisions. Complex software programs have shown scientists how to simplify the decision making process using some mostly simple (sorry, it’s not ALL instantly easy!) rules.
And now, you don’t need the software or the computer any more…
And, by the way, in the last 15 years there has been an incredible amount of research done about decision making that teach and use VERY FAULTY processes, that can’t and don’t work.
KEY: You’ll experience FIRST HAND, how what seems to be an obvious decision, is almost always the wrong one….the costly one…(often the disaster one….)
If you follow that teacher’s advice, you’ll flat out screw up.
You’ll end up with next to nothing and headaches and heartaches to boot.
People, including a lot of authors, are lazy.
They don’t do the research.
They get paid the same no matter what and when YOU screw up, they just say, “you did it wrong.”
Play along for just a moment.
Can I ask you a question?
Have you ever read that it’s been proven that 93% of all communication is body language?
Of course, lots of times. Everyone has read that.
And of course, it’s not true.
(It’s not even close to accurate.)
How could that be, it’s common knowledge…isn’t it?
There was one study done by a brilliant communication researcher 35 years ago that evaluated people saying one word to another, with the other person only being able to see the person from the neck UP. (that leaves about 90% of the body out of the study.) In this one specific instance, Dr. Mehrabian found that about 93% of the communication sent was at a nonverbal level. Obviously when people communicate with more than one word and people can see below the neck, all kinds of factors change the percentages.
Problem is people read something in a book written by Goofball X and they believe what she writes because she says it’s “scientific.”
People look at their lives and think, “I did everything I was told…”
Yep and look at that life. It didn’t work.
The guru didn’t do the research. They went with the party line and taught that.
I don’t care about the party line because I don’t like the people at the party.
Remember when Benjamin Franklin did his famous experiment about testing each of the virtues (temperance and so forth) for a month so he could eventually become adept at all of them? I’ve heard most motivational speakers talk or write about this. I’d name them, but it would take an entire page…
Anyway…You remember… but he gave up the idea after the first week …he never did the experiment. He wrote early in his biography that he was going to do the project and then soon after decided not to. Basically he said it was impossible to do such a thing.
I’ve never heard ANYONE get that right, either.
But THEY TEACH YOU TO DO IT…
And because you trust them YOU TRY IT and FAIL.
Franklin’s personal challenge didn’t work for all kinds of reasons I’ll show you later.
Question: Why did you believe he actually did the project?
Only one reason: …because someone you trusted or believed, an author, a teacher….told you that it was true.
Want a quick way to filter a crummy guru out?
If they tell you that story, they didn’t get very far in Franklin’s biography. If they tell you that, they’d tell you anything.
By the way…what did Franklin do instead?!
I’ll show you that at Decision Point, too.
The point is that MOST of the stuff people tell you to do…. that is “scientific,” that is based on laws of the universe or proven techniques is nothing more than their imagination having run wild.
…and following their advice will get you the same ultimate destination, every time…
Back to Start. (If you don’t go into foreclosure first.)
So why don’t the vast majority of people make good decisions?
Why are people AFRAID to make decisions at all?
They’ve been given crummy information and worse methods for how to choose and what to do.
It’s that simple.
(OK, there are eight other core reasons people make crummy decisions every day, but to pick on your neighbor here is so not cool…)
And what does the Power of Decision Point give you in life?
You’re going to learn it ALL in this 7 Week E-Course.
If you’ve been in an E-Course with me, you know that although they are always convenient, they are also densely packed with practical, real life application as the end result. That is the same here. Everything you learn will be immediately applied to a crucial part of your life because there is a LOT going on in your life right now and a LOT of it has to change but you don’t know WHAT.
Each week you’ll receive a number of emails or documents from me. You’ll have homework assignments that are all real-life based…your life. You’ll be given audios to listen to or video to watch. You will once again, find out what “over delivery” means!
You’re going to discover:
“You’ll never see a sunset if you keep going east! And you’ll never live the changes you want in life if you exercise your decisions in the wrong way. No matter how positive or determined you are. So, if you want to begin making decisions that will help you take control of your life at a whole new level, then you need to enroll and immerse yourself in Kevin’s new e-decision-making course. It’s packed with fresh, new, exciting information that will help you train your brain, period. Since I completed the course, I have learned to think better and smarter about challenges, enjoy being able to make powerful, timely and well-considered decisions with new secret technology that until recently, only the elite had access to. In the course, besides being presented in a convenient format, you will be able to start and work on your learning curve at your own pace. And, personalized learning means you can contact Kevin at any stage of the course. I strongly recommend this course, it has solutions that really work!”