Why your coopy needs emotion

You probably like to think of yourself as a rational person. (Don’t worry—that’s not a bad thing. I do too.)

So when you decide to splurge on that brand new iPhone, you might tell yourself that you did it because of all the great features it has. After all, who doesn’t want a phone with a nicer screen, a better battery, and a more sophisticated camera? Even if the price is through the roof…

However, although your head may be blissfully ignorant of what really happened, your heart knows the truth: You didn’t buy that iPhone based on a careful analysis of its features. In fact, you knew you were going to buy that phone before you even looked at any of the specs.

Why?

Because you wanted to be the first person you knew to have the phone.

Or because you knew that all of your friends were going to buy it, and you didn’t want to be the only person who didn’t have one.

In other words, you decided to buy the phone based on emotion.

And you know what? Your customers do the same thing when they’re deciding whether to buy your product or service.

You might think it’s the list of your product’s features or the description of how your service works that convinces them to click “buy.” But in reality, if you’re successful in making a sale, it’s probably because you made them feel something—something that matters to them.

Still not convinced?

Here’s why you need to use emotion in your copy—no matter what you’re trying to sell.

 

Need help finding the right words to make your copy persuasive and compelling?
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1. We’re wired to make emotional decisions

As humans, we’re sophisticated creatures. We’re the product of millions of years of evolution. And we’ve developed the abilities to think abstractly and critically.

Yet, instead of making buying decisions based on what’s most logical, we rely on our emotions to tell us what to do.

Why?

Because when we make decisions about what to buy, we use a more primal part of our brain that’s involved in processing emotion. Not the more sophisticated part that lets us think critically.

This is what researchers found when they used fMRI scans to identify the areas of the brain that people use when they evaluate products. They found that when participants studied the products, the limbic system (the area of the brain that processes emotions) lit up. In comparison, the areas of the brain involved in analyzing information didn’t show any additional activation.

 

Parts of the brain

 

This is consistent with research showing that people who are unable to process emotions struggle with decision making. In particular, Antonio Damasio, a professor of neuroscience at the University of Southern California, examined people with emotional impairment caused by a brain injury.

In these participants, the part of the brain that’s involved in rational thought wasn’t affected. So when these people were asked to make decisions about eating, they could describe what they should eat and provide reasons to back up their arguments.

But they couldn’t actually make a decision. Why? Because they didn’t know how they felt about their options.

So what does this (and tons of other scientific research) tell us? People don’t think their way to logical buying decisions. Instead, they make decisions based on emotion and then use logic to rationalize these decisions.

And that’s why…

 

2. People buy transformations (not products and services)

You often see businesses using facts and stats to sell products or services. But because people are wired to buy based on emotion instead of logic, this strategy usually falls flat.

It’s also why people sometimes choose a product or service even if it’s not the best one out there.

You see, when it comes down to it, it’s not the product or service—or its features—that really grip us. After all, you have to be a certain type of person for a description of a lithium ion laptop battery to give you all.the.feels.

It’s the transformation that the product or service promises. People want to be happier, feel less overwhelmed, love their body, or make more money. (And the list goes on.)

 

A woman wearing a hat and smiling

 

So when you’re writing copy for your website, sales page, or marketing emails, you don’t want to drone on about the features and facts of your product or service. Instead, you want to focus on how your product or service will transform your customer’s life.

Because that’s what your customer really wants from you. They want something that’s going to kick negative feelings—like fear, shame, and stress—to the curb and replace them with positive ones.

Related: How to use power words to instantly write stronger copy

 

Need help finding the right words to make your copy persuasive and compelling?
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3. Appealing to emotion works

Okay, so emotions seem to be pretty important for decision making. And savvy marketers say that you should inject them into your copy.

But does this actually work? Data shows that it does.

Emotion driven copy has a bigger impact on sales because people are more influenced by emotional ads than rational ads.

Even charitable letters elicit 2x the number of donations when they appeal to donors’ emotions.

That’s why 31% of marketers and advertisers see a significant increase in profits when they use emotion in their copy.

Related: 13 simple phrases that make people actually read your sales copy + free list of 100 compelling copy phrases

 

A person holding US bills

 

4. It’s important even in B2B sales

I know what you’re thinking: “But Nadia, I sell to other businesses, not to consumers. Businesses buy based on facts. I’m going to look silly if I talk about emotions.”

A lot of people think that if they sell to other businesses, they need to be super corporate, factual, and logical in their copy.

But the reality is that even at businesses, buying decisions are made by people. (Gasp!)

Really, though. The people who decide which project management software to buy or which accountant to hire for a business are the same people who decide which TV to buy for their home or which skincare product they should splurge on.

 

People in a meeting at work

 

Business owners, leaders, and employees react emotionally to things. They’re worried about not having a system in place to make sure deliverables don’t fall through the cracks. And they want to save themselves the hassle and confusion of trying to file their own taxes.

They don’t stop becoming human once they walk through the door at work (even if their job is slowly killing their soul).

That’s why even boring scientific equipment for toxicologists sells better when it’s sold using emotion-based copy rather than logical, factual copy.

Related: 9 copywriting secrets to write better sales pages + free list of 100 copy phrases

 

No matter what, emotion belongs in your copy

When you’re writing copy to sell your product or service, it’s incredibly tempting to go on and on about all the great features it has. And it’s true that these logical facts do have a place in your copy.

But as I’ve explained above, logic and reason aren’t enough when you’re trying to convince people to click “buy.” Because we’re wired to make decisions based on how we feel or how we want to feel, it’s important to appeal to your customers’ emotions too.  Even if you’re trying to sell scientific equipment to a large organization, emotion, not reason, is what sells.

But how exactly do you infuse your copy with emotion to make it more persuasive? Stay tuned for my new blog post!

 

Need help finding the right words to make your copy persuasive and compelling?
Download my FREE list of 476 power words.

Send me the list

Why your copy needs emotion—no matter what you sell + free list of 476 power words
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