The following post on the motivations of customers is by Dean Rieck from Direct Creative.
Do you understand the motivations of your blog customers?
Hold on. Did I just say, “customers”? If you’re like most bloggers, you talk about “subscribers” or “traffic” or “page views.” The term “customers” may not come naturally to you.
But if you’re selling things, offering services, or even just placing ads on your blog, you’re running a business. And if you’re running a business, you DO have customers. So in order to maximize the income your blog produces, you have to understand what your customers really want
I’ve been studying customer psychology for years. And from my experience, and the experience of thousands of other businesses, I’ve compiled a list of the most powerful motivations that drive buyers.
Understand these motivations and you will understand your customers.
People want what they don’t have.
They are driven to obtain the things they want or feel they deserve, especially when others have them. In modern society, people are trained to expect more and more from their personal lives. People seek to gain:
- Pride of accomplishment
- Better appearance
- Ego gratification
- Business advancement
- Social advancement
People want to avoid losing what they have.
Just as they seek to gain what they don’t have, they also seek to avoid losing something once they have it. The potential loss of any item on the previous list is a strong motivator.
People want to avoid unpleasant things.
While they are driven to gain and keep pleasant things, there is an even stronger drive to avoid unpleasant things. People want to avoid:
- Offense to others
- Domination by others
- Loss of reputation
People want to act in particular ways.
They usually have specific, emotional reasons for doing things even if they are not aware of those reasons. People act in order to:
- Express their unique personality
- Satisfy their curiosity about some subject
- Feed their appetite for something physical, emotional, or spiritual
- Act or appear like their heroes
- Attract the opposite sex
- Acquire beautiful or rare things that “say” something about them
- Improve themselves in some way
- Gain affection from people who are important to them
- Be accepted into a social circle
- Get ahead at work
- Add beauty or elegance to their lives
- Impress others, build and reinforce their reputation
- Fulfill their duty
- Enjoy themselves or just play
- Create or accomplish something
- Get rich or make money
- Reward themselves for something
- Protect themselves from harm of some kind
People want to be seen in a favorable way.
They like to think of themselves in a positive light. Plus, they are sensitive about what others think of them. So people want to be seen as:
- Smart or savvy
- First or best at something
- Unique, one-of-a-kind
- Creative, either generally or in a special area
- Good parents
- Recognized authorities
- Up-to-date, well-educated, or “with it”
- Gregarious and sociable
- Influential, able to get things done
- Independent and individual
- Popular, well-liked
- Part of a group, “one of the boys”
This list can be helpful when you’re creating a selling message. However, I caution against choosing a motivation at random and grafting it onto something you’re selling.
Good products or services usually have a built-in appeal. You’ll be far more successful if you identify that natural motivation and then build your message around it, along with a strong offer.
Also, be careful about being too blatant about customer motivation. While people are driven by emotions, they like to think they are logical. Always play to the emotion of your customers while speaking to them as if they make decisions rationally.
Dean Rieck is an internationally respected copywriter and designer. For tips on copywriting, advertising, and direct marketing, sign up for Dean’s FREE Newsletter at www.DirectCreative.com , plus get a FREE 16-page report with 99 Easy Ways to Boost Your Direct Mail Response. Or drop by the Direct Creative Blog at www.DirectCreative.com/blog.
PS from Darren – a good book that picks up on some of the same themes as Dean’s post is Hot Button Marketing: Push the Emotional Buttons That Get People to Buy. It’s a good read and helped me in thinking about motivations of readers quite a bit!