What happens when you actually click on one of those "One Weird Trick" ads?

14 replies


Article on Slate

Pretty funny. Always interesting to see views about this stuff from people who aren't in the internet marketing world. Funny to see that the author was actually afraid to click on one of those ads for fear of getting a virus or having his identity stolen. Also interesting to note was his opinion that these ads usually look like "obvious scams."

They forgot to mention however, that the main reason why so many marketers use the "weird" trick line, is because as soon as they see something working, everybody copies it, over and over and over, until eventually it no longer works, then someone comes up with a new original idea that works, and then everyone copies that, and the cycle repeats.
#“one #ads #click #trick” #weird
  • Profile picture of the author RickDuris
    Based upon the shallowness of the journalist's "research", looks like he pocketed the money on the debit card he was given and never spent it on any of the products.

    Imagine how the article would have turned out had he actually bought one of the products.

    Something to think about...

    - Rick Duris
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    • Profile picture of the author Sean Fry
      Originally Posted by RickDuris View Post

      Based upon the shallowness of the journalist's "research", looks like he pocketed the money on the debit card he was given and never spent it on any of the products.

      Imagine how the article would have turned out had he actually bought one of the products.

      Something to think about...

      - Rick Duris
      Not sure if it would've changed anything. He was looking at a penis enlargement page selling some junk supplement, a diabetes "reversal" offer (an obvious scam) and some cuckoo right wing anti-Obama site teaching you how to build bunkers and purify water and shit.

      I can guarantee that he made the right decision by not purchasing any of that garbage. The article would've been much worse.
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  • Profile picture of the author Raydal
    It's always fun to read about advertising from an outsider's view.
    I know some people who judge any product from the format
    of the presentation. They have told me that as soon as they
    see one of those long sales letter they know it is a scam and
    they are "out of there!"

    -Ray Edwards
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    • Profile picture of the author Sean Fry
      Originally Posted by Raydal View Post

      It's always fun to read about advertising from an outsider's view.
      I know some people who judge any product from the format
      of the presentation. They have told me that as soon as they
      see one of those long sales letter they know it is a scam and
      they are "out of there!"

      -Ray Edwards
      With so many people who are bailing out immediately whenever they see a long form sales letter, or a typical powerpoint VSL, maybe it's time for a new way of looking at creating sales pages? That's a lot of lost business that would likely be captured if the marketing didn't automatically trigger the "scam" response.

      Personally, I think it's time to move beyond the scammy looking sales pages that have become ubiquitous in this industry, and move into better strategies, such as creating better transparency, building better relationships, building stronger foundations of proof and designing sites that look just a wee bit more professional while still sticking to the basic elements of persuasion and copywriting.
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      • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
        Originally Posted by Sean Fry View Post

        With so many people who are bailing out immediately whenever they see a long form sales letter, or a typical powerpoint VSL, maybe it's time for a new way of looking at creating sales pages? That's a lot of lost business that would likely be captured if the marketing didn't automatically trigger the "scam" response.

        Personally, I think it's time to move beyond the scammy looking sales pages that have become ubiquitous in this industry, and move into better strategies, such as creating better transparency, building better relationships, building stronger foundations of proof and designing sites that look just a wee bit more professional while still sticking to the basic elements of persuasion and copywriting.
        The marketplace will continue to self-correct as it always has.

        As the conversion rates of certain formats decline, new formats will take their place.

        Just like certain words used in sales copy.

        "Amazing" lost its luster... someday "weird" will too.

        Alex
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        • Profile picture of the author sethczerepak
          Originally Posted by Alex Cohen View Post

          The marketplace will continue to self-correct as it always has.

          As the conversion rates of certain formats decline, new formats will take their place.

          Just like certain words used in sales copy.

          "Amazing" lost its luster... someday "weird" will too.

          Alex
          Well put. We have to remember that for every customer making fun of advertisements, there are probably dozens of them buying the products. It's like the bad boy that all the chicks say is a "pig," but they somehow all end up in bed with him.
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      • Profile picture of the author Raydal
        Originally Posted by Sean Fry View Post

        With so many people who are bailing out immediately whenever they see a long form sales letter, or a typical powerpoint VSL, maybe it's time for a new way of looking at creating sales pages? That's a lot of lost business that would likely be captured if the marketing didn't automatically trigger the "scam" response.
        Recently some marketers have been doing very well with
        autobiography type videos--much like you'll see at a
        political convention--except that these are expensive
        to produce. For the results you get though they are
        beating out traditional long sales letters.

        But for sure the market will numbness to any form
        of advertising that is "over used". The formats may
        change but the principles of persuasion remain the
        same.

        -Ray Edwards
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  • I actually prefer sales letters. You get the whole sales talk in one go, and can quickly find the areas where you want to know more. Videos are great but take up a lot of time.

    With a sales letter, you don't have to load 25 pages on some crazy website, jumping from the homepage to the FAQ to the About Us to figure out what the heck they sell. I wish more advertisers would use sales letters, just not the screaming kind.
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  • Profile picture of the author CopyHat
    I am actually still amazed that those "3 tips for..." and "1 wierd trick to..." ads are still showcasing after all these years.

    They must still be pretty affective if that is the case.

    I think any new comers that start to do media buys, PPC should used these kinds of ads as a baseline, and than construct/deconstruct as necessary.
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  • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
    "as I sat through video after video, alternately bored and enraged—is that there’s no way to shut the guy up and just buy the dick pills already. The videos were all 15 to 30 minutes long, and you had to sit through the whole thing before you can hand over your credit card."

    I'm hearing that.

    So many marketers have gone video sales letter crazy and
    often the execution is not great.

    Paying attention to what you do and what your prospects
    do when they're on a page on your site can lead to huge
    insights in how to improve your sales process.

    Kindest regards,
    Andrew Cavanagh
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  • Profile picture of the author MaxReferrals
    There's another strategy at work, also.... remarketing.

    Pixel dropped, and the ad follows folks around the web.

    View thru conversions. Don't ignore them, it's not just about Direct conversions.
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  • Profile picture of the author Memetics
    Originally Posted by Ken_Caudill View Post

    "There may be another reason for the length and shoddiness of the ads. “The point is not always to get the customer to buy the product,” Urminsky says. “It may be to vet the customer. Long videos can act as a sorting mechanism, a way to ‘qualify your prospects.’ Once you’ve established this is a person who’ll sit through anything, you can contact them by email later and sell them other products.”

    Trolling for idiots.
    And yet another strategy at work called the "sunk cost fallacy" it's a cognitive bias where the reader continues watching because of the time they have already spent viewing. To stop watching is inconsistent with the time they've already invested in watching, so they stick to the end to back rationalise to themselves that it must be interesting for them to have done so.

    They're just "keeping up appearances" to themselves.

    An analogy would be, going to the theatre to see a movie and realising after 10 minutes that it's a load of rubbish but staying to the end because you've paid your money and to leave would be to "throw your money away" (or in this case our time.)

    At a push we may even buy: Afterall we just spent 30 minutes watching...so we must be interested...:rolleyes:
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  • Profile picture of the author Mark Pescetti
    The thing about the "1 Weird Trick" type approaches is:

    They have to reveal something the person reading or watching the presentation will be WOWED by.

    Too many marketers try to use the technique and follow it up with non-truths, nonsense or information that's just plain dumb.

    If you have an innovative perspective you want to share...

    ...it can be the perfect curiosity generator.

    And you overcome any sense of putting off the "scammy vibe" because you're backing up your weird trick with information that people can use - making them more likely to buy.

    But using the weird trick or tricks technique - without having something kinda extraordinary to say is just plain stupid. And it makes you look like a tool - as the marketer trying to leverage it.

    Mark
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