On Monday we talked about vision, on Wednesday we moved to desire, yesterday we drove to the future in our roaring British Racing Green Jag, so let’s round this off with FEAR.
Start here if you missed the earlier parts: https://scienceofcopywriting.com/copywriting/have-a-vision-sell-more-copywriting-tips/
The whole of life can be summed up in two words: Hope and Fear. With hope we have everything to look forward to. With fear we can be given a motive to get it.
But fear comes in two forms. Success and failure. One stops us, the other can urge us on.
Fear of success is a big problem. It represents our doubts (“what will people think of me if I start driving around in this ostentatious piece of luxury?”).
If it ever rears its ugly head, you’re in trouble. Trying to persuade people they’ll have no problem, will backfire. They’ll dig in deeper. Fear of success is not a good place to be.
But fear of failure is entirely different. It’s perhaps the biggest motivator of all when it comes to desire.
It’s other name is FOMO (fear of missing out) or to go to the extreme: dying before we can fulfil our dreams (a bucket list is nothing other than a list of desires with a massive dose of FOMO).
But FOMO is really about ownership. And it matters because the desire for ownership can overcome every other objection (irrational or otherwise).
What if this Jag came with a cherished number plate (eg. CAT 1)? What if it was the only one available in a signed limited edition? What if someone else was just about to get their wallet out and beat you to it?
There’s an unlimited number of “what ifs” available to sell on fear and part of our job as copywriters is to ethically sift through them and pick the most appropriate ones.
Tolkien used FOMO as the centrepiece to Lord of the Rings. He knew that ownership is the king of consumerism. If you want to sell more, never ignore ownership as the root of all fear.