NLP copywriting power words

by 41 comments
Interesting new study on NLP power words:

Persuade with Silky Smooth Copy | Neuromarketing

- Rick Duris
#copy writing #copywriting #nlp #power #words
  • Profile picture of the author Steve Hill
    Roger Dooley's book, Brainfluence, is also a pretty good reference for marketers and business owners. It contains many subtle and not-so-subtle techniques to change people's perceptions, attention, and actions.

    While some of these 100 recommendations could use further proof of effectiveness, others are techniques of obvious merit, such as the measurable value in responding quickly and sincerely to customer complaints. (A Harris survey showed 18% of those receiving timely responses to to bad online reviews became loyal customers, and nearly 70% reversed the negative content by deleting the negative review or posting a second positive one.)

    There is also a section on adjectives that work, which is useful to copywriters. Would you rather have just plain salmon or Wild Alaskan Salmon (cue images of strong, robust salmon swimming in pristine waters)?
  • Profile picture of the author Harlan
    Originally Posted by RickDuris View Post

    Interesting new study on NLP power words:

    Persuade with Silky Smooth Copy | Neuromarketing

    - Rick Duris
    That was pretty limp.

    Use sensation based words.

    That's new?

    What good copywriter ever didn't?

    That's Intro To NLP 101
    • Profile picture of the author Steve Hill
      Originally Posted by Harlan View Post

      That was pretty limp.

      Use sensation based words.

      That's new?

      What good copywriter ever didn't?

      That's Intro To NLP 101
      I think Rick was referring to the study itself, not Roger Dooley's take on it.

      The study presents fMRI-based evidence that textural metaphors (such as "rough") activated the texture-selective part of somatosensory cortex, or the part of the brain known as the parietal operculum. In other words, texture-based words activated areas of the brain associated with touch.

      Roger then posited that those kinds of terms might be more memorable and impactful, and went on from there.

      Perhaps it would be more informative to read the interview with one of the co-authors of the study, Krishnankutty Sathian, who is a professor of neurology, rehab medicine, and psychology. It is located at This Is Your Brain on Metaphor - IEEE Spectrum.

      So while using sensation-based words is not new, sometimes it's useful to study the science behind how and why they work.
  • Profile picture of the author Pusateri
    Will someone please explain what NLP actually is? I mean, what do practitioners of NLP do that is not done by others?

    And please don't give me the modeling excellence line. People have been copying what works for the entirety of history.
    • Profile picture of the author Bruce Wedding
      You guys don't realize you're dealing with the self-proclaimed master of NLP copywriting You're not going to be able to teach him anything about NLP. I mean come on, this is a guy who wrote this page:

      Video « Beach Millions

      Warning: View at your own risk. Because of the author and his powers over the mind, you will have to use incredible will power to avoid buying the product when you watch.
    • Profile picture of the author Mark Andrews
      Originally Posted by Pusateri View Post

      Will someone please explain what NLP actually is? I mean, what do practitioners of NLP do that is not done by others?

      And please don't give me the modeling excellence line. People have been copying what works for the entirety of history.
      Neuro - brain activity. Frequencies. Think alpha waves, theta waves etc.

      Linguistic - speech. Or in this case the written word as applied to copywriting in our case.

      Programming, as in programming sensory input into the subconscious mind. Turning off the conscious mind which raises the objection to allow the unconscious mind more freedom to influence positively any desired action needed on the part of the programmer.

      Certain words used in combination for example can spark off in the subconscious mind a fight or flight response mechanism.

      Using fear words will typically trigger either of the above responses even if the recipient isn't aware directly of what is happening to them.

      Used carefully you can manufacture the results you're looking for, for whatever set number of variables or outcomes you want based on different standard personality types.

      An experienced copywriter with a very good understanding of the target market can manipulate these sensory and/or chemical organs knowing full well a certain percentage of said audience will nearly always respond in a certain way from the programming or words chosen to elicit the response desired.

      An NLP expert is simply aware of how to press these buttons whilst for the most part most people aren't aware of the actual processes involved at a deeper level although to some extent, knowingly or otherwise, most if not all people do this to some extent or another.

      In a nutshell.

      At least, this is my personal take on it.

      I could go a lot deeper into this but I haven't the time for it right now.

      Mark Andrews
  • Profile picture of the author videolover7
    Originally Posted by Ken_Caudill View Post

    Ah, it works but the subject is unaware that it works and there's no objective proof that it works.

    I like it.
    Some copywriters use NLP to help position themselves. Smart.

    Some copywriters believe those who use NLP to help position themselves. Dumb.

  • Profile picture of the author angiecolee
    Love this. Back when I was studying screenwriting, I had a professor that taught similar methods, but I doubt she thought of it as NLP. She encouraged us to avoid adjectives when possible and opt for descriptive action words instead.

    He shuffled instead of walking slowly.

    She chortled instead of laughing derisively.

    They collapsed instead of falling down.

    When I describe things, I try to stick to that wisdom - it's easy to cut down unnecessary words when you vary descriptions and don't rely on adjectives all the time.

    I promise that random ramble was tangentially related. It's the descriptions that make copywriting fun for me - finding different ways to say the same things we've all heard. Creativity, folks!

    Thanks for sharing, Rick!
  • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
    Now, now ladies. Behave, please.
    • Profile picture of the author Jason Fladlien
      NLP often gets confused with hypnosis.

      NLP is a method to MODEL a certain behavior. So NLP in copywriting would be to study a great copywriter and figure out how they make their decisions for writing headlines/hooks, laying out the letter, focusing on hot buttons, positioning the offer, etc.

      The refinement is not what they tell you... that's not a model. You have to know how to figure out what they do even if they themselves aren't aware at it. You have to figure out how to elicit their strategies - that's where it's important to know NLP.

      So if you asked a copywriter - "How do you know when you have a great headline" and they answer - "It just pops out at me then I start humming along and next thing I know I'm in the groove and the copy is done!"

      Their internal process is Visual (pops out) Audio (humming) Audio (groove).

      More important is if I ask them to describe to me what they see, hear and feel internally when they are in the "copywriting zone".

      If almost every copywriter who gets in the zone sees moving images, close and larger than life with vivid bright colors... guess what? I'm going to start visualizing moving images of me writing world class copy with vivid colors

      In my opinion, one of the great contributions from NLP was the "phobia cure" invented by Bandler. He discovered how to cure almost any phobia using in less than 5 minutes. How'd he do it? He took an ad out in the paper asking for people who had phobias and got rid of them to call him - and he interviewed them.

      What he discovered was a pattern - people "seeing themselves" from afar just doing what they were afraid of, and "looking back" at all the times they struggled with their phobia. So he then took that and made a model:

      Understanding NLP's Fast Phobia Cure

      And now almost anybody who understands it and practices can do well with phobias. That's how Tony Robbins first got big
  • Profile picture of the author Steve Hill
    And how in the world does someone get a phobia about...baked beans? But it was an interesting article.
  • Profile picture of the author ThomasOMalley
    Use all copywriting resources that make your copy read more smoothly so that readers move down your copy like going down a slide. Excellent resources include Richard Bayan's Words That Sell and Joe Vitale's Hypnotic Writing Swipe File.
  • Profile picture of the author Adrian Int
    Saggsee, I believe Bruce was quoting Jennie Heckel during the portion you're asking about. I wouldn't hold him accountable for any bitter taste reading that may have left in your mouth. :-P
  • Profile picture of the author saggsee
    No bitter taste at all. I am asking as a way of how to promote oneself. I have no "proven record" so any advice would be most welcome. I have posted a new thread on the subject but looks tacky lol....but attention grabbing. I am a trained NLP Practitioner and have just recently read a book on Web Copy that being "Web Copy That Sells" Great read and I am quite geared up to start this form of writing but like many newcomers just need a pointer in where to start.....Fiverr is not my way but if needs be??? Thanks...
  • Profile picture of the author debml
    When did this become the critique Jenny Heckel forum?
  • Profile picture of the author sammib01
    Bruce Wedding I do not know you but I love your comments. The Warning was best. I do International Business negotiations and believe me copywriting is different in many countries. The Germans are exact in spelling and use Little emotion, the French, Spanish, Italians and Portuguese use alot of emotion and spelling is secondary. The Russians can't spell and Love to tell looong stories. It changes from country to country. And NLP will work in the US but internationally I am not so sure.

    I Love reading peoples ideas and having a laugh... And I mean ist in a good way. People can be so pleasent and funny while still providing quality useful information.

    Love it. Thanks all and especially Bruce. You make me smile. :-)
  • Profile picture of the author Ken Hoffman
    There is so much to NLP that it is easily misunderstood and distorted, even by people who think they know what it is.

    You really can't make an evaluation on it until you have experienced it first hand. Not by talking about it or reading a book about it. But by interacting with others, in person, using it.

    I have been to many NLP trainings, including Richard BAndler, who many credit as inventing it.

    I'm a certified NLP trainer. Went through about 6 weeks of training 10 hours a day. The only word that describes my experience is transformational. That is, I was a completely different person after.

    Everything I did, I did better after that, including copywriting.

    It helps you sync up your conscious and unconscious thought processes.

    It helps you quantify every tool of communication.

    Yes, there is overlap between NLP and hypnosis. Much of my NLP training worked on Milton Erickson's language patterns.

    Unfortunately, NLP has gotten a bad rap as being manipulative. And many business people who got into it, did so to try to get "control" over other people.

    What it is, IMHO is one of the strongest tools for self-improvement available today.

    And that includes improving your copywriting skills.
  • Profile picture of the author saggsee
    As a quick add on note to Ken's excellent words above regarding NLP getting a bad report at the moment I can confirm that when I have mentioned my NLP Practitioner level to some people I am met with faces that seem horrified. What I think IMHO is that in copy writing and selling for that matter NLP techniques have been used since business begun but only now are we beginning to acknowledge that certain words induce certain reactions.
    People will never buy/subscribe/call unless they are happy to do so, no matter what words we use for copy.
    • Profile picture of the author Ken Hoffman
      One other thing I'll add. People sometimes forget that the words alone are only 7% of the communication. So as a copywriter that leaves out 93% of the communication.

      Most of the value of NLP comes from tonality, emotional state management, and body language.

      Outside of the words, there are strategies that can be applied too, such as future pacing, etc.
  • Profile picture of the author CopyMonster
    Forget NLP.

    What you want is to CAPTIVATE.

    What you want is to CONNECT.

    And above all...

    What you want is CLARITY.

    Focus on these things and you can drop prospects to their knees, begging you to take their cash.

    Day after day after... well, you get it right?

    Isn’t it FUN to do... have customers shove money in your account night and day?

    CUSTOMERS get better lives. YOU get a big house, fancy cars, amazing vacations (whatever your heart desires)... bam, bam, BAM!

    Write. Get cash. What’s not to like?

    Forget NLP.

    You don’t want to touch that stuff...

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