There is a lot of confusion out there (especially in the blogging space) about how to create an offer. Without a clear blueprint for structuring an offer that sells, you’re leaving your efforts up to chance.
And quite frankly, that sucks.
Working with my clients and creating my own offers, I’ve created a basic road map that I use for presenting any product or service I create. Specifically, there are seven rules for creating an offer that sells. I didn’t make these up, they are tested by the sweat, success and failure of marketing promotions. Violate them at your own risk.
1. Make the outcome plain as day to see.
In any case, starting out by confusing your audience is a bad idea. Think about all the things you’ve taken out your wallet and paid money for. Did you know exactly what you were going to get? Or was it a grab-bag mystery of chance and surprise? Probably not.
If you want to create an offer for a service or product that gets people to buy, you absolutely must have a clear, easily identifiable outcome. People don’t want more confidence or better intuition. They want a specific solution where their investment will create a tangible result. Of course you could help people with confidence to create a better relationship with their partner, or improve their intuition to cultivate the right business relationships.
Without a clear path, the offer is limp and unconvincing. The clearer you make the path, the easier it will be for someone to decide whether or not the investment is worth their time.
2. Create an offer that alleviates pain and satisfies a deep desire.
Some people will tell you that your product needs to either alleviate pain or satisfy a desire. I think it needs to do both.
The deeper the pain and the desire, the better. That’s because all good offers are emotionally driven. People don’t buy things for logical reasons — even the most logical purchases include some driving emotional reason underneath.
3. Use social proof to make the decision easier.
Proof based on the results and testimonials of others relieves the decision making pressure from your customer. Ever notice you pick the product with the highest reviews, not the cheapest one or the one with the loudest manufacturer claims?
As social human beings, we rely on the experiences of others to make sound decisions. We simply don’t have the time or energy to do the necessary research and take the risk ourselves. The less you put the burden on the buyer — by supplying convincing proof from past clients and customers — the stronger your offer will be.
4. Make the value outweigh perceived or real cost.
People want to know they are getting a good deal and that they’re getting their money’s worth. So the value must outweigh the real monetary cost, or the perceived cost of time and energy they need to put into the solution.
You can do this in two ways.
- Give them more value or potential for value than their investment. You can do this by selling them something that will make or save money, or by selling something where the emotional benefits are higher than the monetary cost.
- Make it easier for them to get results. If you can create a checklist that makes keeping track of their progress easier, do it. If you can offer a type of mindmap or perhaps some case studies that gives them real world examples, find a way to include it. All of this makes your product easier to use and increases the perceived (and real) value.
5. Center your offer around the active seeker.
This should be common sense, but you’d be surprised how often this simple principle is overlooked. And not doing it can result in the death of your offer (and your business).
With any offer, you can either target the person actively seeking your solution, or the person that needs it but doesn’t know it yet. When you target the latter group you set yourself up for resistance and frustration. You may see a sliver of success, but not enough to justify your effort. In all cases, you absolutely must center your offer around the person that wants what you have to offer right now. You don’t have to convince them or “convert” them. You just have to prove to them that you can deliver and are the best choice for what they need.
Try this: think about the customer that is ready to buy your solution right now. What puts them in a unique position to make that investment?
6. Create an astonishing guarantee.
“30 day money back guarantee” doesn’t work anymore. It’s expected. It’s boring. It’s not convincing whatsoever.
Let’s see if we can turn that up a notch.
If during your or your grandchildren’s lifetime you decide you’re not satisfied, tell us and we’ll give you double your money back.
Now, that’s a convincing guarantee. It shows that the seller has 100% faith in their product, almost to the point of insanity. It not only instills much more confidence in the buyer, but it urges you to step up your own game to deliver on that promise. It’s also something people are likely to talk about “Hey, have you seen that ridiculous guarantee that one company has?” (I’ve said this many times about REI’s incredibly convincing lifetime guarantee on their products.)
It’s even better if you can promise a specific result that relates to your outcome. 1,000 subscribers in six months is a good example from Tyler Tervooren.
How can you create some type of unbelievably convincing guarantee, and deliver on it?
7. Induce a sense of belonging and identification in your offer.
One of the strongest human urges is that of belonging and feeling like they’re a part of something. So try to make your offer about a bigger movement that your customer is becoming a part of.
Ask… What’s the deeper collective movement or experience that’s involved here? How can I use that to tell a story?
Incorporating this collective belonging allows you to easily tell the story of how and why the product or service you’ve created originated. Less of the attention is placed on the logical objections a person has, and more emphasis is given to the emotional connection your customer has to being a part of that story.