What is the most important factor in the decision to buy something?

by Shadowflux 44 replies
There are plenty of theories about why certain sales copy turns readers into customers. Each piece of copy has the same objective but will go about it in a different way. I feel that every piece of copy also has one main selling point. Whether it's a low price, the novelty or exclusivity of a product or the ability to receive said product immediately, there is always one thing which tips the scales and makes the reader buy what you are selling.

I would love to hear what you guys think is the most important factor in the buying decision. What do you think is the last piece of the puzzle, the last bit of weight that tips those scales? If your reader is on the fence, what pushes them over to the other side?

I look forward to the responses, discussions on this sub-forum are always quite lively.
#copywriting #advice #buy #copy #copywriting #decision #factor #important #sales
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  • Profile picture of the author Pusateri
    The sale hinges on confidence.

    If the prospect doesn't have confidence that the product will meet her need, deliver on its promise, there will be no sale.

    It's the meat in the selling sandwich, placed between the bread of attention and urgency.
    • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
      I agree with Pusateri... believability is the most important factor.

      I'd put the selling sandwich together differently, though. Attention and irresistible offer between the bread.

      Alex
    • Profile picture of the author Shadowflux
      Originally Posted by Pusateri View Post

      The sale hinges on confidence.

      If the prospect doesn't have confidence that the product will meet her need, deliver on its promise, there will be no sale.

      It's the meat in the selling sandwich, placed between the bread of attention and urgency.

      I like your sandwich analogy, it prompted me to have lunch.

      I'd have to agree that confidence in the product or service is incredibly important. I would even add to that and say that one of the most important elements in good copy is creating a feeling of legitimacy around the product or service being offered. I think this is done in a number of ways and one of the most important is using the right terminology.

      If your targeted market is very specific, let's say it's doctors or investors, then you need to use the right words and phrases to make it seem like the product or service is a part of that market.
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  • Profile picture of the author copyassassin
    Originally Posted by Shadowflux View Post

    What is the most important factor in the decision to buy something?

    Shadowflux,

    Strangely enough, what I'm about to share has little to do with copywriting; yet, I find these factors to be present in almost every single case in niched services/products:
    • Very high demand, low supply
    • Deadline, with negative consequences for not making deadline (IRS, health)
    • Predetermination to buy
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  • Profile picture of the author Rezbi
    All other things being equal, the thing that makes people buy is desire.

    If they don't want the product, they won't buy, no matter what.

    Keep in mind, desire could be inate. Something they're not yet aware of.
    • Profile picture of the author TheSalesBooster
      Solves a problem.
    • Profile picture of the author stephenwaldo
      Originally Posted by Rezbi View Post

      All other things being equal, the thing that makes people buy is desire.

      If they don't want the product, they won't buy, no matter what.

      Keep in mind, desire could be inate. Something they're not yet aware of.
      My thoughts exactly. Desire is the most important factor. All people do exactly what they want.

      Just look around this forum. Plenty of folks here who think they want to make money, but they actually want to linger on forums all day socializing. So they do.

      Your job is to figure out what the prospect ACTUALLY wants, and then either give it to them or convince them they want something else.
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  • Profile picture of the author ERPLeadsWriter
    Originally Posted by Shadowflux View Post

    Whether it's a low price, the novelty or exclusivity of a product or the ability to receive said product immediately, there is always one thing which tips the scales and makes the reader buy what you are selling.
    The answer to your question is actually any of these things. It can just be one, a pair, or an entire combination. The important thing to remember is to know your target audience. What matters most to them and in what order?
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  • Profile picture of the author verial
    One of the things a good copywriter recognizes before even beginning to write is whether the decision-making process is a:

    1) Should I buy this?


    or a:

    2) Which one should I buy?

    Knowing the answer will guide your copy down one of two routes:

    1) Convincing the prospect to buy (as opposed to go without)

    or

    2) Convincing the prospect to buy this one (as opposed to buying a competitor's)

    If your writing objective doesn't match the reader's mindset, you're setting yourself up for low conversions.
  • Profile picture of the author zthfitness
    Believability is HUGE... it was Mr. Halbert that said the #1 reason people DON'T buy is that they simply DO NOT BELIEVE YOU!
    • Profile picture of the author cjp214
      Shadowflux,

      The way I see it, there are not one but several "fences" you have to knock your prospects off before you can get them to open up their wallets.

      Here are just a few I can think of:
      • "Do I pay attention to this marketing message?"
      • "Do I read the message beyond the headline (or whatever it was that caught my attention in the first place?)"
      • "Does this product/service address a problem I'm having?"
      • "Why should I buy this product/service instead of a cheaper/different alternative?"
      • "Do I even believe what this ad's saying?"
      • "Is the offer being made worth the money?"
      • "Do I really have to act now... or can I just set this aside for later?"
      Phew. That's a lot of fences!

      But if you've led your prospect all the way through your copy, kept their interest, and channeled their innate desire (I don't believe copy can create desire...only channel and amplify it) towards your product, that final fence you have to get over is getting themselves to act now.

      They already want the product. They want their problem to go away. But they need to believe you enough to give you a chance (a solid guarantee helps with this)... and they need an impetuous to act now (premiums, negative consequences, etc.)

      If they're on that last fence, I think it's a combo of credibility and a giving them a reason to act this second.

      Corey
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve The Copywriter
    Yes, all the above...

    Before anyone buys - the product, service, offer - must give a resounding ping to the right emotion (the research shows the key emotion) - and you need to justify the decision with a helpful dash of logic.

    You're creating an "itch" that the prospect simply has to scratch.


    Steve
  • Profile picture of the author mrdomains
    Greed.

    If you stop to think about it, greed is the driving force behind almost every lust, desire, ambition, ego, etc, all of which are triggers to sale. The only occassions when greed is not behind it all is when compassion is the driving force.
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  • Profile picture of the author CopyMonster
    There is one thing in my mind that is above all else (including desire, value etc). Not ready to share it though. Maybe when I retire. You know, follow in the footsteps of The Bencivenga.

    Don't PM me either because you will be disappointed when you don't get it from me.
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    Scary good...
    • Profile picture of the author Pusateri
      Originally Posted by CopyMonster View Post

      There is one thing in my mind that is above all else (including desire, value etc). Not ready to share it though. Maybe when I retire. You know, follow in the footsteps of The Bencivenga.

      Don't PM me either because you will be disappointed when you don't get it from me.
      Nah. That ain't it.
  • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
    Cool thread and everyone who's posted here is right.

    Buyers will go over the edge deciding to buy for multiple reasons.

    And while you might be able to identify one key in one buyer it's
    probably going to be a different key in another.

    Writing good copy is about hitting multiple buying triggers well so
    that different kinds of prospects in different emotional states and
    situations will all become more likely to buy.

    If there was just one thing that worked all the time for everyone that would be
    really cool...we could all just write copy based on that trigger.

    If only it was so simple.

    Kindest regards,
    Andrew Cavanagh

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