In part 1 of this series on selling, we dipped back to the dawn of civilization, where pictograms and grunts were the only means of passing information (as far as humans were concerned at least).
Other animals developed different ways of course – ants and bees being great examples of collaboration and information sharing. What’s interesting about them is their heritage. Being members of the insect family, they originated along with the first plants around 480 million years ago.
Compare that with humans – around 6 million years ago, and you’ll see it’s not that surprising how advanced insects have become.
The problem with insects (and every other species come to that) is they hate paying for stuff. They have no interest in currencies or crypto. Most don’t care about their status (and those that do, tend to decide it with a fight instead).
But they still, nevertheless, consume. Instead of currency, they use collaboration or force. If you look a little deeper though, they’re really not that much different – we just like to complicate things (and buying is a good example).
There are two types of buying: considered, and impulse. We often hear that impulse buying only happens with low cost items, but that isn’t true at all. I have bought multi-thousand dollar products on the spur of the moment (and regretted a few too).
I’ve also spent a considerable amount of time umming and ahhing over low cost items (such as vitamin supplements). Insects and other animals don’t seem to suffer from this – they have a need and go fulfil it.
That tells us their desires are strongly tied to their needs. But with us, we developed a new way of looking at the world – and we called it WANTS. We saw what someone else had and wanted it.
Sometimes that was because we wanted to be like them, sometimes it was because we saw something in whatever they had that would evoke some emotion we liked, and sometimes it was just greed.
Other species are also in the process of developing wants (birds collecting trinkets, monkeys swiping aerials and wing mirrors from cars etc.). But all of this activity only happens when we do one thing: Take Action (it’s no wonder that internet marketers have been “rewarding action takers” for years – it’s part of their propaganda machine).
As I said in part 1, the whole point of copywriting is action. If there’s no action, our copy fails. This is why people focus so heavily on clicks, shares, and comments in social media – it’s the sign we’ve been told to look for as proof we’re doing something right.
So we focus on that and in time we get some action. The trouble is, the action is mostly useless. It’s rarely tied to any system. Our clients get clicks and sometimes visitors, but no extra sales.
The content writers among us point to the stats and say “Look, this is amazing, see how the bounce rate has gone down, people are reading this stuff I’m writing for you, visitor numbers are up. You need me more than ever…” and business owners are saying “Yes, I see that” but thinking “so why am I still not making more sales?”.
There’s action and there’s action, but the only action that counts for our clients is the one that produces money. Which is where we’re headed for 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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