Telling Versus Selling

from mila 

Ever wonder what the difference was between telling and selling? Here’s your answer…

Web copy, advertisements, sales pages, autoresponders and more all have one main job – to sell. Is your copy doing its job? Is your copy telling or selling? Here’s the difference:

Telling lists features. For example, the washing machine has a 7 cubic foot capacity.

Selling explains benefits. For example, larger capacity machine means fewer loads and more time spent doing the things you want to do.

Telling describes. Stainless steel face with digital controls.
Selling paints a picture. Bring your laundry into the 21st century with designer controls and a sleek stainless steel face. Digital controls are touch accurate and make doing laundry simple enough for your five year old.

Telling makes a statement. Does your laundry.
Selling makes a promise. Do your laundry in half the time, and save water too.

Telling speaks to the head. Use logic to reinforce the buying decision later in your copy through testimonials, case studies, and facts. People don’t want to read, buy this washing machine because it cleans clothes. They want to know what it will really do for them. Will it save time? Will it help the environment? Will it make their laundry room look like it was professionally designed? Will it clean their clothes better?

Selling speaks to the heart. We buy for emotional reasons, not logical ones. Strong words and copy that bring about or speak to the emotions of your buyer will not only capture their attention, they’ll keep them reading and encourage a sale. Emotions like curiosity, jealousy, love, anger, gratitude and so on are strong emotions that can be used to effectively sell the benefits of a product or service.

Here’s an opening sentence for Swiss Money Strategies that uses the emotion of fear very effectively – “Your wealth is in imminent danger.”

When your sales copy is complete ask yourself one important question – does your copy tell or does it sell?

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