“People buy emotionally and justify intellectually.”
– David Sandler, You Can’t Teach a Kid to Ride a Bike at a Seminar
There’s an idea in sales- the idea that the actual properties of your product matter less than how people feel about your product. I see this in myself all the time. It’s the reason I choose to pay $25 to go to a concert or $65 for the name brand shoes instead of the department stores lookalikes. I want to feel cool or excited or classy or admired. That’s why I buy what I buy.
Yet, this was an idea I rarely put into practice in my marketing. I was stuck to the notion that people want facts, people want details, people want amenities.
I approached writing for Loveland Coffee as I need to give people a peek into how a drink is made, what it’s made of, how the flavors work. I was writing posts about our drink of the month with this formula:
[Generic opening, reference to local weather]
[Drink of the month is ___. It’s made of ___ and ___ and ___. It’s prepared by ___ing and then ___ing and then adding ___ to the brew. Try it because ___.]
[Ask to buy. Mention physical location. Link to online shop. Generic statement about awesome customers and/or employees.]
As you may have guessed, these blog posts were disappointing. They may have been accurate to the extreme, but they were also bland and boring. As I continued writing and editing and receiving feedback from my boss, I began shifting away from facts and towards feelings.
Suddenly, these posts were way more enjoyable to read! This is because people don’t really want facts- they need them to justify a purchase. What they do want is an experience.
Now, these are three principles I write by:
- Emphasize feeling words
- I write opinionated
Use confirmed facts when relevant
Instead of fretting over the exact process involved in crafting a drink (I’m not a barista), I focus on how it feels to enjoy a coffee. My power is in my words- I can’t give you a taste of the mocha or let you smell fresh roasted beans, but I can let you imagine it with the right words. I’ve learned where facts are necessary and which ones to pick. Writing like a human is important too- no one reads textbooks for fun. People trust content because they trust and connect with authors.