Boring ‘business card’ type advertising doesn’t work, and unfortunately most hypnotists are guilty of using boring advertising.
Here are some essential concepts of copywriting virtually no one in the hypnotherapy profession use in their marketing materials. In fact, it’s rare to find this in most small business advertising. This means if you do it, you will have an advantage…
1. Translate features into benefits
Don’t just give information and assume that the reader will correctly interpret it and realize how it brings value to their life. People want to know that you can solve their problem, you need to make that clear as a bell so your prospect has no doubt they came to the right person.
Example: You offer a ‘Free Consultation’. You need to clearly articulate how this is beneficial to them.
"Take advantage of our FREE 30 minute consultation. Come down and meet our staff and have any questions answered about how our program works and can help you to stop smoking forever."
As a side note, it’s a common misconception that when you give something away you don’t have to ‘sell’ it. This is totally false. In fact, sometimes you have to work harder to give something away, because of people’s distrust of so called ‘free gifts’. The point is, assume you have to sell anything you give away at the same level as that which you charge for.
2. Write from the ‘you’ perspective not the ‘I’ perspective
Nobody buys anything unless they perceive a direct benefit to themselves. The question must be answered "what’s in it for me?"
If you spend all the time telling them how wonderful you are, instead how what you do is good for THEM, they will not spend a dime with your business.
Don’t say, "I offer three weight loss packages." Instead talk directly to them, or as Robert Collier would say, you enter the conversation already going on in their mind.
Example: "Everyone has different needs. You may just want to lose a few pounds, or you may desire an entire lifestyle change. You can choose from three different weight loss plans, each specifically tailored to get you to your desired level of health and fitness. I will personally help you to choose the one that will serve you best during your free consultation session."
3. Use long copy in your advertising
Don’t be afraid of long copy. Ad copy should be long enough to get your message across effectively and leave virtually no questions unanswered.
John E. Kennedy, one of the most famous figures in early advertising history once said "Advertising is simply salesmanship in print." This holds true today. Your advertising is selling your services, it is like your sales force working to bring you qualified leads and clients.
You wouldn’t limit a flesh and blood salesperson to just a few sentences and expect them to convince anyone to buy, so why would you put a limit on what you can say in your ads? Imagine if you were only allowed 5 minutes to do your pre-talk.
If anyone takes the time to look at your ad, they are going to want as much information to make a decision as possible. The more you give them, the more likely they will be to do business with you.
An ad with long copy will out-pull an ad that is mostly white space or graphics every time. This has been shown in tests time and time again since the 1930’s. If you do use a photo or grahics, it should only be there if it helps with the sales message. Putting a photo of a sunset or your dog does not help people get your benefits oriented message.
4. Positioning yourself as THE expert
Especially when it comes to hypnosis, people are skeptical. One tool to overcome skepticism is by positioning yourself as THE expert. I can’t emphasize how important this is, and it is a central theme to my marketing methods.
When people consider you THE expert, they will forget their skepticism, they will listen to what you say, and they will not object to your fees.
Positioning can be done in a number of different ways, including.
- using testimonials from satisfied customers (ALWAYS USE THIS ONE)
- listing the number of clients you have worked with in your career (only use if a big number)
- guarantees and warranties
- any media coverage of you or your business
- writing articles or books about your profession
- length of time in business (only if a long time)
Note: of these, the most powerful is TESTIMONIALS. Especially for something people really don’t under stand well, such as hypnosis. ALWAYS use them whenever possible. You are collecting testimonials aren’t you?
Also, remember tip number 2. Tell them how this benefits them using the ‘you’ perspective.
5. Remember that stories sell, facts only tell
Whenever you can use first person stories, third party stories about customers and anecdotes to make key selling points, be sure to do so.
As a hypnotist, you know very well the power of metaphor. Well it works in your marketing and advertising too. If you have a client who comes back to you with a story about how their life has changed remarkably, use this story in your marketing. In this business heart warming stories happen all the time, and people can connect on an emotional level with such stories.
A story is also much more captivating than a bunch of bullet point items and facts and figures.
One of the most famous sales letters in history, the Wall Street Journal Letter, is a 2 page story about two men and how one ends up a CEO and the other never gets beyond mid-level manager. This letter was worth over a BILLION dollars of subscriptions for the Journal and was mailed non-stop for over 40 years. What made it work is the story.