Following on from yesterday’s piece, there are three states of belief: Positive, Negative, and Indifferent. People with a positive belief in something are the cream of the crop when it comes to audience selection. Negative are second, and the indifferent are last.
There is also more than one scale when it comes to audience selection. If you’ve followed the work of Schwartz, you’ll know about awareness levels. Without being aware of how aware your audience is, you’ll struggle to write the right words to convert them.
But without knowing their beliefs, you’ll never know why a seemingly great piece of copy fails (and a seemingly bad one succeeds).
It’s why unsuccessful people complain about their “oh so mediocre” but successful competitors (I know because I’ve been at both ends of the spectrum). Compassion is the ONLY weapon whichever end you’re on (if you want a relatively stress free life).
Our job as copywriters is made easier when we’re writing to a specific audience who we know have positive beliefs about our message and they’re at least at the problem aware level.
For example, if I’m a travel writer, and I know my audience is in love with a specific place, then it’s easy to take them further on that journey (it’s a journey they crave to be on). All I have to do is show them something they never knew before (about the location or people) and lead them to the golden land (which might be a holiday offer or something else that’s relevant).
Get those wrong and you’ll find yourself writing for the indifferent. The indifferent may cover every spectrum of the awareness scale (in other words, just because someone is fully aware, does not make them a target).
But someone with positive beliefs about some aspect of what we’re selling may fall anywhere on the awareness scale and yet still be a great prospect. That’s where desire comes in.
Desire is the third scale we need to consider as copywriters (Schwartz argues that without desire there is nothing, and he’s probably right – but it’s a chicken and egg thing).
I’ll be talking about that in this week’s newsletter. If you’re not on the list, sign up before Sunday to get it – https://scienceofcopywriting.com – the link’s on the home page of this site.