The following is a guest blog post by John Allen, Director, Global SEO of RingCentral.
Whether we are aware of it or not, all of us use psychology in our daily lives in one form or another. Perhaps we are using micro-aggressions through facial expressions when we talk to people. Maybe it’s in the language we use to get that competitive advantage over our workmates.
However you use it, becoming aware of how your understanding of others impacts your day-to-day work can help you turn these daily traits into sales results. It doesn’t matter if you are a small business owner or a worldwide company. With a little bit of know-how, you can leverage psychology to create organic leads and generate more sales simply through the way you behave with customers.
After all, the point of any marketing campaign is to influence how people think. Here are four ways in which you can use psychology to convert leads into customers.
This is not as confusing as it sounds. The term ‘paradox of choice’ describes a situation when a person is confronted by too many options. They become overwhelmed and have difficulty making a decision. In the marketing world, this means giving a shopper so many options that they can’t choose — which means you make no sale at all.
Barry Schwartz is the creator of this concept. He spoke of how the paradox of choice leads to people feeling they lack control over their decisions. In his book, “Paradox of Choices”, he writes:
“When people have no choice, life is almost unbearable… But as the number of choices keeps growing, negative aspects of having a multitude of options begins to appear… The negatives escalate until we become overloaded. At this point, choice no longer liberates, but deliberates."
When making your customer engagement strategy, don’t send three emails in one day, each with ten different offers included. Instead, create one clear path that walks a customer to a sale from start to finish.
Offering a limited number of better-tailored options to customers is a great way to break this paradox. Listen to what they want and offer them one or two solutions. This will make you appear knowledgeable and encourage customers to return to a store where they can get results.
Remember, having fewer options accelerates growth.
World class customer service strikes a balance between evoking knowledge, reliability, and urgency.
It might sound simple, but urgency is one of the most-used marketing methods. Something as simple as an “Act Now” or “Hurry! Ends Soon!” call to action (CTA) works wonders.
Implying that an offer will soon vanish into thin air will create a sense of FOMO amongst customers and throw a potential buyer into action.
A great tool to prompt this is a countdown timer. For example, on an email or landing page, you can set a timer to the exact second an offer will expire, pushing customers to buy. You can also limit an offer to a short period of time, even a single day, to drive customers to commit to the purchase.
You could also set up offer reminder emails. Many will ignore an offer email the first time around, but a follow-up email a few days later will put it back into the customer’s mind. You can even personalize it For instance, ‘Jeff, 20% Off Shampoo Still Stands.’ It goes without saying that your company should find a way to keep these light and friendly without being too pushy.
Using some nifty marketing teamwork, come up with a watertight strategy. A well-executed email workflow that sends reminders without being overwhelming will win conversions.
Remember to share your strategies with every member of your team, permanent and contingent workers alike. Consistency in your messaging is vital.
The way that color is used to change our thoughts and feelings is taken for granted much more than we realize. Think of the associations we have with certain colors and the way that we automatically know the meaning behind those hues.
Take red, for instance. Depending on the context, we know it can mean love, anger, passion, or danger. It can even indicate a sale. Marketers have been using color to sell for years. Around Valentine’s Day, for example, the shops are filled with red hearts and flowers.
Think, too, about the way that a color can make you feel in general. A room painted yellow will give off different vibes than a room painted white.
Steven K. Shevell from The University of Chicago talks about the influence that colors have on us. He says:
“Emotional responses to hues are a classic example… Color is used routinely in symbols and signs.”
For example, blue indicates trust, whilst orange indicates positivity and green denotes harmony.
Through applying this psychology, brands can use different colors to draw in customers and sell. Of course, using colors is visual, so if you deal with inbound calls, this may be a bit more difficult. However, those that use visual marketing should take advantage of this point. Think about what you want from your customers and use colors that match this.
There’s nothing like a crowd mentality. In the most positive sense, of course. If something is proven to be reputable amongst a variety of customers, it’s very likely to be successful amongst new customers.
Social proof should be one of the key messages of your outreach strategy. It’s a theory discussed by psychologist Robert Cialdini. On the topic, he says:
“It states that one means we use to determine what is correct is to find out what other people think is correct.”
To put this in a modern marketing context, good reviews drive sales. We look to other people to decide what is right..
Like a connected workforce, social sharing creates a community around your brand. You could hold competitions involving customers sharing content. This shows that you already have a dedicated customer or client base.
You could also leverage social proof by highlighting your most-purchased products or showcasing your award-winning credentials. It’s like having a resume at a job interview: show what you’ve done, demonstrate your achievements, and provide references to prove it.
There are many ways you can use psychology to create leads and, ultimately, make sales. Some methods are simpler than you think. Chances are you probably already use them on a regular basis without realizing it.
Becoming aware of these psychological concepts will allow you to integrate them into your marketing strategy more effectively.
Psychology is, and always will be, an excellent way to connect with customers and clients. All you need to do is give customers a direct path to the sale, create a sense of urgency, and choose the right colors. You will also provide ample social proof of your successes.
With those key points in mind, you’ll be well on your way to using psychology to drive leads and make more sales.