Spewing Hype vs Inspiring Action
A reader asked…
Q: How do I write effective sales copy without losing my genuine voice or coming across too hypey?
Good question. “Hype” can be a subjective term, so…
A: Let’s start by defining hype.
Hype is short for hyperbole, which in sales copy can be identified as…
– desperate calls for attention
– over-the-top promises
– shouting without substance
– making bloated claims
– pushing the boundaries of truth
– aggressive and condescending tones
– flat out lying
– bullying and manipulating
It’s easy to agree that these and other elements of “hype” copy are unappealing. However, instructing your readers and prospects to take an action is not hype, it’s a mandatory piece of the communication.
For instance, at the end of a blog post, you could simply say “hope you enjoyed this…” and allow your reader to stumble away and find something else to think about.
Or you could do what masters of engagement like Marie Forleo do at the end of a post… “challenge” readers to tell about their experience with an issue relating to the post they just read.
A small shift that spurs radical results. Marie’s comments reach beyond the hundreds on just about every post.
Yet, asking for “action is a common hangup people have about selling and communicating. They mistake using proven copywriting tactics like…
– bold headlines
– big promises
– confident claims
– praise from customers or colleagues
– emotional storytelling
– identifying a common enemy
– genuine scarcity
– creating a strong desire to act
… as “hype”, when, if done with sincerity, these are fair and necessary tactics of solid direct response copywriting.
These are important distinctions because a lot of people confuse “sincere” with “boring”.
And, believe me, as much as you and everyone you know insist they hate “hype”, you would instinctively choose it over boring any day of the week.
So, my suggestion for avoiding hype is to first identify hype.
Some things you think of now as hype, may just be tools you need a little practice handling.
It is possible that your voice and persona needs to grow more confident before you can lead your best prospects to the action that is best for them?
Remember what my man John Carlton says If you’ve created something that you KNOW will help your prospect solve a problem and improve their lives, then shame on your for not doing everything in your power to make sure they hear your message..
That should help you get past this worry about coming on too strong.
In a nutshell, my advice for developing your voice is this:
Be yourself, but be the boldest version of yourself possible.
Now I want to hear from you (wink) … tell me which emails or websites you interact with always seem to get you taking action, and why.
To better action!