There’s a huge mistake that a lot of novice sales people make that leads to wimpy sales presentations…
And, because copywriting, marketing, and advertising are “selling multiplied,” it should come as no surprise that many novice copywriters make the same dang mistake.
Which is bad and good.
It’s bad, of course, because every time you make this mistake, you’re getting less response than you could be.
Why is it good? Well, if I’m competing against you, it’s good because I can beat the pants off your copy easily, simply by not making the same mistake.
But that’s good for me, not you. It’s good for you because once you know about this mistake, it’s a relatively easy fix. And without becoming a better writer, you’ll almost instantly increase the selling power of your copy.
So — what’s the mistake?
Well, let me share something interesting. A sidebar comment made on the Truth About Marketing podcast, by Joe Schriefer, Publisher at Agora Financial. (Here’s the episode link.)
Joe was talking about the process of getting a piece of copy out the door at Agora.
He was saying that a good copywriter develops so much faith and conviction in their big idea and argument, that he likes to have his copywriters fight for their idea in a little roundtable discussion before the copy even gets fully written…
Here’s roughly how he described it…
A copywriter comes up with a big idea. Their copy chief or team lead thinks it’s worth pursuing. They’re told to really study it and make sure they can make a solid case for it. Then, they are brought into a conference room with a handful of other copywriters from their team.
They present the idea.
And it’s the team’s job to run it through the gauntlet. To throw rocks at it. To tear it down. To bring every objection and reason why a prospect wouldn’t believe or respond to bear on the idea.
Their mission is to get the copywriter to go in one of two directions.
First, is to break. To not have enough to really stand behind their position. And thus, to decide they either have to get a pile of additional research or to go back to the drawing board and find a new idea.
The second direction is to get a fire in their belly and give inspired testimony for their idea. They may struggle a little, at first. But they’ve done their homework. It’s a solid idea. It’s got merit. And, they can back it up. So for every punch that’s landed against their idea, they have a counter-punch. For every objection raised, they have a solution. For every reason not to respond, they have an answer.
Assuming the second direction, the copywriter whose idea survives this battle has a new energy and zest for the concept.
So they hit their computer, and start slamming on keys. Making sure they captured as much of the dynamics of the meeting — and their response to every attack — as thoroughly as possible.
Do this, and you have a rock-solid selling argument. Do this, and you might just knock it out of the park. Do this, and you might create a breakthrough winner.
Have you figured out the mistake yet?
The difference between wimpy sales copy and really powerful, breakthrough messaging is…
Tackling objections head-on!
If you’re a novice salesperson, who doesn’t know your product and doesn’t have conviction, objections will quickly throw you off-guard.
You won’t know how to respond. You won’t be able to.
You’ll try to sidestep them, or just hit the breaks on the sale with an, “Um… I don’t know.” You’ll cower when your prospect throws up any old excuse in the book, and you won’t close.
You’ll be like the copywriter leaving that meeting with their tale between their legs. Either hitting the proverbial library to find more support for your big idea, or going back to singin’ the ol’ “Blank Page Blues.”
A pro, on the other hand, will eat up objections. They call them “buying questions.” As in, the prospect wouldn’t be asking this question or raising the objection if they weren’t thinking of buying.
And that’s a good frame of mind to be in when it comes to objections.
Even if you’re writing copy, if you get to the point where someone is having objections, it means they’ve already gone deep with your sales message and represent a good potential buyer.
A true A-list copywriter or sales person takes yet another approach to objections…
While the pro is happy to get objections…
There IS another level.
And it’s the level that Joe is trying to get the Agora copywriters to, with their messages, BEFORE they sit down to crank it out.
A true A-lister knows that objections are best handled before they’re even conscious!
That is, if you really understand what it takes to make the sale you’re looking to make, you’re going to understand all the objections, and where they’re most likely to come up in the selling process.
Throughout the course of your message, you’ll know where the prospects are most likely to have questions, see roadblocks, or raise objections that might prevent them from moving forward.
That’s when you…
Take two steps back and address the objection before it’s obvious!
That is, right when the objection is coming up, you find a way to put something in place that will handle it before it becomes conscious.
Now here’s a little hint that should help.
As you are going through your copy — either the outline you put together before you write, or the draft copy after it’s written — get in the mind of your prospect. And, from their perspective, try to imagine every time you’re prone to respond, “So what?!” or “Bull—!”
That will catch most of them.
Even better if you can get someone else who doesn’t have an emotional investment in the copy to do the read-through for you, using those same “lenses” looking for problem spots.
Mark all the troublesome spots, and go back and find a way to counter the objection before it comes together in the prospect’s mind.
Done right, this will make your prospect start to assume you actually know what you’re talking about!
It’ll be like you’re reading their mind.
Every time they start to notice the seeds of doubt even starting to germinate, you’re there to wipe it out.
Pretty soon, doubt will be gone.
They’ll be nodding their head.
And they’ll whip out their credit card, smack it down on the table, and shout, “Take my money!”
And that’s when you’ll no this ain’t no wimpy copy no mo’!
Yours for bigger breakthroughs,