In part 1 of this series we looked at some current typical online display ad headlines, the first three of which were all product based. Two of them included a price in the headline, both of which used anchoring to make them appear to be better value.
Anchoring is one of many psychological tactics I write about in my upcoming book Copy for Beginners to be published early 2021. I’m writing a daily diary on its progress here if you’re interested: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1xns1095JQL5oX3a_ljf0TUSiAKOA15-_jtmrSacsnqc/edit?usp=sharing
The anchored headlines in part 1 used two variations of price fixing to help influence the prospect. Ad #1 claimed your life could be saved for £49. Since most people value their lives at more than £49, you can see why this works.
Ad #3 was more direct. We’re told a powerful telescope costs $3000, but we can get something better for $47. We’ve been anchored so high, it’s hard to resist finding out what sort of con this is (because that’s going to be the reaction of most people). The result is a click. Job done (as least as far as the ad agency is concerned – the advertiser probably has no idea that the quality of those clicks is likely to be super low – but that’s another matter).
Anchors are not just limited to prices though. We can anchor people on anything we like. We only have to say “Squirrel” to a dog, and we’ve anchored that dog’s brain on squirrels for the next few microseconds. The same happens to us too. Eg. if I ask you what book you last read, you’re now anchored on “books you last read”.
This is powerful persuasion stuff. Continue to part 3.
I've spent my working life starting and running a whole variety of businesses, from my first QPL Express Couriers where I travelled over 100,000 miles every year delivering packages on a motorcycle (along with a whole bunch of colleagues) to Accountz.com which made a major in-road in the UK, to ProofMEDIA my current business that focuses on Copywriting and the International Copywriters Association, which helps copywriters learn more about copywriting and the copywriting industry around the world.
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