Geoff Ayling, in his superb book, " Rapid Response Advertising," provides wannabe guerrillas with a full fifty reasons why people buy. There are really far more than fifty, but I have a feeling that these fifty will get your creative juices flowing. People make purchases for these, among many reasons:
- To make more money -- even though it can't buy happiness
- To become more comfortable -- even a bit more
- To attract praise -- because almost everybody loves it
- To increase enjoyment -- of life, of business, of virtually anything
- To possess things of beauty -- because they nourish the soul
- To avoid criticism -- which nobody wants
- To make their work easier -- a constant need to many people
- To speed up their work -- because people know that time is precious
- To keep up with the Joneses -- there are Joneses in everybody's lives
- To feel opulent -- a rare, but valid reason to make a purchase
- To look younger -- due to the reverence placed upon youthfulness
- To become more efficient -- because efficiency saves time
- To buy friendship -- I didn't know it's for sale, but it often is
- To avoid effort -- because nobody loves to work too hard
- To escape or avoid pain -- which is an easy path to making a sale
- To protect their possessions -- because they worked hard to get them
- To be in style -- because few people enjoy being out of style
- To avoid trouble -- because trouble is never a joy
- To access opportunities -- because they open the doors to good things
- To express love -- one of the noblest reasons to make any purchase
- To be entertained -- because entertainment is usually fun
- To be organized -- because order makes lives simpler
- To feel safe -- because security is a basic human need
- To conserve energy -- their own or their planet's sources of energy
- To be accepted -- because that means security as well as love
- To save time -- because they know time is more valuable than money
- To become more fit and healthy -- seems to me that's an easy sale
- To attract the opposite sex -- never undermine the power of love
- To protect their family -- tapping into another basic human need
- To emulate others -- because the world is teeming with role models
- To protect their reputation -- because they worked hard to build it
- To feel superior -- which is why status symbols are sought after
- To be trendy -- because they know their friends will notice
- To be excited -- because people need excitement in a humdrum life
- To communicate better -- because they want to be understood
- To preserve the environment -- giving rise to cause-related marketing
- To satisfy an impulse -- a basic reason behind a multitude of purchases
- To save money -- the most important reason to 14% of the population
- To be cleaner -- because unclean often goes with unhealthy and unloved
- To be popular -- because inclusion beats exclusion every time
- To gratify curiosity -- it killed the cat but motivates the sale
- To satisfy their appetite -- because hunger is not a good thing
- To be individual -- because all of us are, and some of us need assurance
- To escape stress -- need I explain?
- To gain convenience -- because simplicity makes life easier
- To be informed -- because it's no joy to be perceived as ignorant
- To give to others -- another way you can nourish your soul
- To feel younger -- because that equates with vitality and energy
- To pursue a hobby -- because all work and no play etc. etc. etc.
- To leave a legacy -- because that's a way to live forever
I must add one more area about which you should be creative, one more reason that motivates people to make a purchase, and that area deals with pain.
Thomas Jefferson said, "The art of life is the art of avoiding pain; and he is the best pilot, who steers clearest of the rocks and shoals with which it is beset."
More recently, Sam Deep and Lyle Sussman, who wrote " Close The Deal," teach the importance of pain and the ways to learn where it resides. If you know exactly, you've got a heckuva great starting point for your creativity.
There. Now that you've got 51 ways to win the hearts and business of your prospects, I think you'll have an easier job of winning sales and profits.
Jay Conrad Levinson is the author of the " Guerrilla Marketing" series of books, the best-selling marketing series in history. His books now appear in 37 languages and are required reading in many MBA programs worldwide. This article has been excerpted from Jay's new book, " Guerrilla Creativity: Make Your Message Irresistible with the Power of Memes", published by Houghton Mifflin.
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