About Lorrie Morgan-Ferrero

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The Raw Truth About Persuasion and Copywriting!

By Lorrie Morgan-Ferrero, Expert Copywriter Strategist

Lorrie_Morgan-FerreroI get asked all the time, “Lorrie, how can I make my copy more persuasive?” Well frankly it helps if you can speak your prospect’s language. But writing persuasively is more involved than just saying the right words. You need to say them in the right order…and in a way that lowers resistance to new information and is acceptable to his or her mind.

One discipline that translates nicely to writing persuasive copy is NLP or Neuro Linguistic Programming. NLP isn’t a replacement for good copywriting. It’s a turbo boost. Meeting a person on his or her own level by using familiar words puts YOU in control of the communication almost immediately.

Have you ever been moved to buy a pair of sexy shoes instead of the sensible, comfy shoes you really needed? But when you got home you didn’t know how you got over the resistance of spending the money? See, people understand the RESULT of making a purchasing decision, but are often unaware of the internal recipe that gets them there. We all know we tend to buy based on emotion over logic. In fact, most buying decisions are largely emotional.

WHO’S RIGHT ANYWAY?

We can all agree there are two sides to the brain, correct? The left (logical) and the right (emotional). Interesting fact: information is first perceived by the emotional right brain. Then within a fraction of a second, it shoots over to the logical left. Then finally, once again, is reflected to the emotional right. In other words, every message we get is influenced by the emotional right brain. Pretty fascinating, huh?

Here is the basic principle of NLP as I understand it. There is no mental resistance to an idea you perceive as your own. And whenever any of us engages our imagination, we think we came up with the idea ourselves. So it must be great!!! It aligns with our own beliefs so it’s unconsciously accepted as being the truth and you act as if it’s true. So NLP always prefers to presuppose that changes can be made quickly and automatically.

So let’s cover some NLP principles and how to use it in the art of persuasive writing.

PACING

Pacing is putting yourself in the prospect’s shoes through languaging. Look at David Ogilvy (one of the greatest advertising masters who ever lived) as an example. His first headline for Rolls Royce didn’t come from HIS mind, but that of an engineer at the factory. Ogilvy was told, “You know David, the loudest noise from this Rolls Royce comes from the clock on the dashboard at 60 miles an hour.” And David thought this man, this engineer must know something because he’s constantly in the flow about changes and revisions and everything happening at the Rolls Royce factory. So David did his research and made a connection. I’m not suggesting the engineer was deliberately using NLP on David, but it’s an illustration of how we as humans connect the dots and are able to write persuasively as a result.

Though similar to empathy, pacing is a bit more complex. In pacing, you actually encourage the prospect to use visualization or other accessing cues in a very subtle and vague way. These are the same communication skills of matching, mirroring and rapport that allow you to pace and lead someone to the sale.

NLP Master Ross Jeffries says, “People will not accept that you are an authority on where they should go unless they accept you’re an authority on where they are at.”

In other words, if you’re reading a letter or listening to a podcast, it makes sense for me as a writer to mirror that experience for you.

Then you subtly relax:

  • “As you’re sitting there reading this letter…”
  • “As you are sitting in front of your computer…”
  • “While you are listening to this broadcast…”

Any of those phrases have you and the prospect share an experience, which moves him or her toward the sale. Have you ever met someone and felt an instant kinship with that person? Or on the other hand, met someone who you just could never quite get on the same wave length?

What if you knew how to get on that person’s “wave-length”? You would have a totally different outcome – the outcome you wanted! That’s the importance of defining your target audience (or my own term, TAR-KET). You can communicate with that one person because you have already defined him or her.

PRESUPPOSITION OF AWARENESS

This technique also ties to speaking directly to your own target market. (If people don’t have their target market nailed down, it doesn’t matter how good their copy is. It doesn’t matter if you’re trying to sell beef to a vegetarian. It’s just not going to work. So you really have to zone in on your target market.)

The way you do that is to understand your product. Figure out where they shop, where they eat, what they look like. Are they a family or are they single? Do they have dogs or not? Do they live in a rural area or the city? These keys make a huge difference when you are trying to figure out who your target market is. When I write my copy, I write to one person. I visualize everything about them so it’s very real to me when I start to write. I would suggest that you funnel down your target market to your TARKET as much as possible. That’s how you’re able to give them the illusion. You’ve given them information and the mind fills in the blanks. The more specific the better is what I’m saying.

In this technique you direct the conscious mind of the reader by assuming something is true. So you speak to him or her as if something has already happened. Here are some examples:

  • “As you become aware of…”
  • “As you recognize …”
  • “I’m not sure just how excited you can get about this offer but…”

The proper use of language patterns in written words means you communicate by tonal shifts, tempo shifts etc., following the patterns of a question, a statement, or a command. We invite people to share our certainty about our product or service by using an intonation of a command or a statement like “Do you agree?”

PRESUPPOSITION OF TIME

This concept piggybacks onto the previous one. You build on the prospect’s experience of awareness by adding in the element of time. Examples:

  • “Before you order today…”
  • “After you make your decision to order…”
  • “While you are filling out your order form…”

Use language patterns to move yourself and others in a direction that results in a win-win situation. The truth is that we are selling ourselves every day, all day long. Doesn’t it make a lot of sense to use communication skills like NLP to lead someone where you want them to go? And the more that happens, the more successful you will be with your copy.

ABOUT LORRIE: Award-winning marketer, world-renowned copywriter and creator of “The She Factor,” Lorrie Morgan-Ferrero of Red Hot Copy has a reputation as the top female copywriter in the info-marketing industry. Lorrie is dedicated to teaching the world it is possible to shift from the hype-filled sales to a more modern version …marketing written with authenticity, trust, and rapport.

CLICK HERE to learn more about Lorrie’s insightful She Factor Copywriting Bootcamp and her other amazing products.

The Secret Words That Keep Your Prospect Reading!

By: Lorrie Morgan-Ferrero, Expert Copywriting Strategist

www.redhotcopy.com

© All Rights Reserved

SecretWant to know one of my secrets to getting my copy très conversational? Bridge phrases! You know. That throw-away language my journalism school professors called “empty and useless.” The connector phrases that keep the pace going – like a bucket brigade! Direct mail copywriter Maxwell Ross used that concept to illustrate how copy should flow.

Let me take you back to when the West in America was young. When men were rugged. And women didn’t have to diet. I’m talking about the time before there were fire departments. Oh, there were still fires. Just no organized way to put them out. So they came up with the bucket brigade system.

When a blaze got going, the townspeople pulled together. They’d line up and pass water – bucket by bucket – from the nearest water source to the fire. Being careful to keep the water moving along briskly. No let up. No slow down. Can you picture it?

Well, that’s what we aim for in copy. It needs to move along briskly. No let up. No slow down. Each sentence pulls the reader into the next. And so on. And so on. Until he’s so deep in your copy he doesn’t want to come out. In fact, once your reader has gotten through 25% of your copy, chances are he’ll read it all, says copywriter Joseph Sugarman (the marketing genius who introduced the Blu Blocker sunglasses among many other successful marketing campaigns). Joe also said, “The sole purpose of the first sentence in an advertisement is to get you to read the second sentence.” There’s your bucket brigade in action.

That’s a little bit about the flow of the copy. Basically, the 1st sentence of your copy is designed to get them to read the next sentence. And then that sentence is to get them to read the sentence after that.

That’s why that visual works really well for me when I think about writing copy that flows. Before this country even had fire departments a long time ago, they would have volunteers that were called “the bucket brigade”. If there were a fire in the village the people in the bucket brigade would line up from the water source to the fire. One person next to the other and they would pass the bucket down full of water quickly, because they had to get it there, and throw it on the water and fill it back up and so on.

So I like that visual of each sentence briskly moving you along to the next sentence over and over again. That’s how your copy should go. It should never let up. As soon as you start letting up, you’re going to lose your reader. And that’s why we have sentences that connect like,

  1. As if that’s not enough
  2. Best of all
  3. But wait there’s more,
  4. By now
  5. By the way,
  6. Even better
  7. Good news!
  8. Here’s why
  9. Meanwhile,
  10. Nevertheless
  11. No wonder
  12. On the other hand
  13. What’s more
  14. You see
  15. Think about it
  16. As if that’s not enough
  17. As it turns out
  18. But that’s just part of the story…
  19. Fair enough?
  20. No problem!
  21. What does this mean for you?
  22. And we don’t stop there
  23. As it turns out
  24. But that’s just part of the story…
  25. Fair enough?
  26. In my experience
  27. It’s true
  28. My experience is
  29. No doubt about it
  30. No problem!
  31. Sadly,
  32. Simply stated
  33. These are just a few
  34. To make a point
  35. Treat yourself
  36. What does this mean for you?

Things that your English teacher would say like don’t put that in there. That’s really silly. It doesn’t add any value. But it does add value. It’s a connecting phrase that keeps the copy flowing along the way. Remember that copywriting is interactive. The reader gets to decide when the copywriting is over. The reader gets to decide when they’re done reading. As soon as they’re not feeling your copy, they’re gone.

And that’s also why the headline and the sub headline, those 2 are the most important part of your copy. It doesn’t matter how good your copy is if they’re not going to read it. And they’re not if you don’t get their attention.

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ABOUT LORRIE: Award-winning marketer, world-renowned copywriter and creator of The She Factor, Lorrie Morgan-Ferrero of Red Hot Copy has a reputation as the top female copywriter in the info-marketing industry. Lorrie is dedicated to teaching the world it is possible to shift from the hype-filled sales to a more modern version … marketing written with authenticity, trust, and rapport.

CLICK HERE to learn more about Lorrie’s She Factor Copywriting Boot Camp and her other amazing products.

5 Ways to Pump Up Your Storytelling Muscles

By Lorrie Morgan-Ferrero, Expert Copywriting Strategist

Lorrie_Morgan-FerreroIn 2014 we’re bombarded with more media messages in a single day than our grandparents got their entire lives.

You heard me right! We see about 5,000 ads a day (one every 11.52 seconds we’re awake). Craziness.

So how do you stand out over the rest?

Simple. You need a good story.

Let’s tackle the mystery of getting started…how do you find ideas?

1)    Listen to what’s going on around you – Yes, I’m encouraging you to spy at the grocery store, the gas station, the pet store, or wherever you are. Pay attention to random topics.

2)    Eavesdrop in a coffee shop – You’ll get to hear full conversations from the tables around you which gives you loads of ideas. Just be discreet.

3)    Always have a way to take notes – Whether you prefer writing in a notebook (like I do) or making notes on your phone or recorder, just be sure to get it down. You won’t remember all the gems. I assure you.

4)    Listen to storyteller channels in the car – There are endless podcasts and satellite radio stations devoted to telling stories. Besides iTunes, you can also check out NPR.com and search for storytelling.

5)    SIT! STAY! WRITE! – Grab a timer and start writing for 15 minutes without editing. You’d be surprised at how your inner writer will emerge when she doesn’t feel judged. In about 5 minutes, you’d be surprised that you can probably write 300 or so words.

A strong story forms an emotional bond with the person who hears it. That emotional bond is what triggers action – a purchase, a decision, a new perspective. Pair that with the technology that has leveled the media playing field, and you’ve got a powerful one-two punch that can reach large numbers of people, all over the world, in a flash.

No matter which marketing medium you’re using, storytelling will make it more effective.

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Wanna get better at telling stories faster? THIS Friday, August 1st we heat up the next FREE 30 Day Storytelling Challenge on Facebook. Register here.

Guest Post – Secret to Connecting With Language

Lorrie_Morgan-FerreroImagine getting your ticket to visit a colony of creatures living on Mars. Would you simply go there without doing any research on their culture, their habits, or their sensibilities? Of course not!

Yet many marketers erroneously waste their time spewing out generic messages to their prospects. They are not aware of how often these prospects leave the fold, never to return again. That means money pouring out faster than it comes in.

Let’s bring things back to Earth. Ever notice how different language appeals to different people? How you speak to one group makes a big difference in whether or not you’ll connect. Use the word ‘sick’ to a nurse means someone is ill. Use the word ‘sick’ with a teen and it means something is a good thing. You never want to mix up the lingo.

To be honest, using the right language with the wrong prospect isn’t going to get you anywhere.

So as a marketer, where do you begin to dig for this connecting information? Well, you start by connecting to the person on the other side of the page…the person reading.

Before we go one step further, please understand this concept…

Copywriting is a team sport. There is YOU, the writer. And there is HIM or HER, the reader. Here’s the deal. The reader gets to decide when the game is over. As soon as the reader is gone, nobody is reading your copy anymore. So you must anticipate what’s going to keep them interested and intrigued with the copy ahead of time.

We have a lot to cover here, so pull up a chair and pay close attention. First of all, when you want to connect with somebody, you have to know where they’re coming from.

Let’s put this in the most basic of terms.

If you’re interested in someone of the opposite sex, to get the best results, you’re going to need to do a little research, right? Hopefully you wouldn’t just approach the object of your desire without knowing a bit more about him/her. (That’s why the movie “Fatal Attraction” was made.)

Same with your target market. You need to dig a little bit in order to get the best results.

For starters, you must know the education level of your target market to reach them effectively. Here’s the deal…in general, even educated people don’t mind reading simple words. Simple means clear. But there’s a fine line between talking down to your target market and using simple language.

  • Instead of ‘at this point in time’ write ‘now.’
  • Instead of ‘subsequent to’ write ‘after.’
  • Instead of ‘on the grounds that’ write ‘because.’
  • Instead of ‘in spite of the fact that’ write ‘although.’
  • Instead of ‘whether or not’ write ‘whether.’
  • Instead of ‘make inquiry regarding’ write ‘inquire.’

You get the idea. (Lawyers may not appreciate copywriting but your prospects will.) So anytime you can ‘dumb down’ or simplify the language, by all means do it. You’re not insulting your reader at all.

For the most part, Americans read between the 11th and 12th grade levels. Did you know that best-selling books are written for the 8th to 10th grade level? “Reader’s Digest” aims for the 10th grade level, while “Time” and “The Wall Street Journal” reach for the 11th. So remember to KISS it…Keep It Simple, Sweetheart!

Remember, you won’t make everybody happy unless you write boring, milquetoast copy that’s easy to ignore. The first recipient of the Pulitzer Prize, Herbert Bayard Swope wrote, “I can’t give you a surefire formula for success, but I can give you a formula for failure: try to please everybody all the time.” Be BOLD!!

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Copywriting Strategist Lorrie Morgan-Ferrero publishes the award-winning Copywriting TNT weekly e-zine with 33,000+ subscribers. If you’re ready to jump-start your business, make more money, and have more fun in your small business, get your FREE tips now at Red Hot Copy

How to Create Predictable Emotional Response (PER) In Copy

ElephantAs a wordsmith for over a decade, I have to say that for the longest time I couldn’t figure out why people didn’t respect copy.

It seems they would look to improve every other aspect of a marketing campaign before they’d look at the copy.

Then I figured it out…

Copy isn’t just a bunch of words on a page or in an email…

At its most basic definition, it’s “salesmanship in print”…but it goes so much deeper than that…

Have you ever heard of the Elephant & Rider metaphor?

It’s based on NYU social psychologist Jonathan Haidt’s theory in his bestselling book, The Happiness Hypothesis.

It goes like this…

Imagine a 200 pound rider on top of a 15,000 pound elephant. It appears that the smaller rider is in control…but the truth is the enormous elephant is really going to go where it wants.

This is a metaphor for emotional response

See, the rider represents the conscious, logical brain…while the elephant represents the emotional, visceral brain

The truth is…the elephant is in charge…and so are your emotions

People feel emotion first, then rationalize it.

Say you want a piping hot pizza…

You can practically taste the hot cheese and the crispy crust…

Then you start talking yourself down rationally…

You know pizza has little nutritional value…

You’ve been hitting the gym lately and pizza is just more unwanted calories to work off…

You also feel like crap afterwards…

So now it’s a push me/pull you game…

Which side wins? The rider or the elephant? The rational side or the emotional side?

If you’ve even done things that you know you probably shouldn’t do like sleep in or procrastinate or make an impulse buy, then the emotional/elephant side is winning.

Emotions are much more powerful than rational thought.

In order to write copy that really connects, you have to break into your prospect’s subconscious, and create a Predictable Emotional Response (PER)

See, understanding your target market is just the first layer…we need to feel those people viscerally… like the flesh and blood people that they are. When you can get to THAT level, your bond is instantaneous.

So how do you get there? Well, for your consideration, I’d like to reveal my favorite, yet quirky secret to getting a Predictable Emotional Response (PER).

This trick harkens back to my acting days when I first arrived in Los Angeles. (Fun fact: Did you know I was an actress on Baywatch for a summer? Yup. That’s how I got into the Screen Actors Guild.)

When you’re studying a character for acting, you need to understand the “backstory” of your character.

In fact when I’m teaching copy-writing classes, I teach my students to write their own “backstory” biography of the ideal prospect they’re looking to attract.

It’s really fun and engaging. Best of all it brings your “target” (or avatar or persona or whatever you want to call it) to life.

The best way to elicit a true Predictable Emotional Response (PER) is this…

You need to FEEL an emotion when you write if you want your prospect to experience an emotional response while writing…

You must HAVE an emotional experience while you’re writing if you want your prospect to have one while they’re reading. The way to get there as a marketer is to know exactly who you’re selling to, which is the same person you’re relating to across the page.

This emotional connection comes from your true empathy of where they are and where they want to go…

The more you can actually visualize a single person in detail and know her emotional road map, the faster you will build lasting connection.

It works every time.

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Copywriting Strategist Lorrie Morgan-Ferrero publishes the award-winning Copywriting TNT weekly eZine with 33,000+ subscribers. If you’re ready to jump-start your business, make more money, and have more fun in your small business, get your FREE tips now at: Red Hot Copy


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