Golden rule for sales copy.

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You might have heard the ‘golden rule’ most speakers follow when they deliver a speech or make a presentation:

  • First, tell them what you’re going to tell them.
  • Then tell them.
  • Finally, tell them what you told them.

This golden rule can work equally well when it comes to sales copy.

Of course, you won’t use exactly the same words and phrases again three or more times.  But you will find that your persuasion rate and retention is higher if you reiterate your key logic at least three times during your sales message.

Why is this?

Perhaps you recall being in elementary school and learning your times table off by heart.  Of course, you’d probably have to be older than 35 to remember that as rote memorization went out of fashion in education some time ago… but nevertheless, if you didn’t have the pleasure of chanting 2×2=4, 2×3=6, 2×4=8 together with your classmates, I’m sure you can still visualize the process…

The reason kids used to learn foundational information through use of repetition and speech was because repetition increases retention. Note:  I said ‘retention’ not ‘understanding’.

In the same way, seeing, saying and hearing something at the same time also increases retention.  In other words, if you read something aloud, you will remember it better because you’ve absorbed it through both your eyes and your ears.

For this reason, repeating your logic in your sales pitch will help your readers believe and remember it far more than if you state it only once.

As I’ve mentioned, you won’t want to use the same words and phrases, nor even the same approach within a single sales pitch.  But, by explaining the logic from multiple view points, you will create multiple opportunities to hit your customer’s ‘hot button’.  In other words, at least one of your view points will probably make sense to your reader and engage their attention.  The other viewpoints will serve to reinforce the validity of your logic.

The easiest way to achieve this is to make a list of the major benefits your customer will experience from owning your product or using your service.  Take each benefit and  analyze how many ways it can be played out.  Write a short pitch on each of these ways.  Then, as you write your presentation, weave these extrapolations in as naturally as possible.

The end result will be far more persuasive and give far more reasons for your reader to take action than if you’d created only a single argument.

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