November & December theme:
“Choose One Thing”
Posted in :  Brain Waves

“Why won’t she just do what I tell her to?” I moaned to my wife after finding my 5-year-old covered in tattoo marker.  She looked like Mel Gibson from Braveheart for the better part of a week.  The fact is I can’t tell my daughter to do anything. I constantly have to persuade her to do what I want and there always needs to be something in it for her.

A Five Year-Old Taking Matters Into Her Own Hands (or, Face)

Working with your customers and potential customers is a lot like the relationships you have with your kids. You can’t make them do anything. You need to persuade them why they should do business with you in the first place and why they should continue to do so in the future.  There needs to be something in it for them.

The truth is, it’s hard getting people to care about you.  You really need to understand what motivates them and build a framework around their motivations before you start implementing tactics.  Consider the following:

  • What problems are they facing?
  • Where do they look for solutions?
  • What language do they use to describe their challenges?
  • How do they make buying decisions?
  • Who else is involved in the purchase decision and what do they care about?
  • How is success measured?

Armed with the answers to these questions we can put together a plan to persuade prospects to take action.  We call these actions “conversions” in online marketing.  Here are a few examples of micro conversions that might lead to the macro conversion of a sale: downloading a trial version, registering for a newsletter, calling for more information, downloading a whitepaper or subscribing to a blog.

A framework that I find useful, when considering how to persuade someone to take action, is the AIDAS marketing model.  Here are the steps in the process:


A: First, you need to grab the prospect’s ATTENTION through AWARENESS. They need to be aware that you are a potential solution to their problem.

I: Next, you have to build INTEREST in your offering. Show your prospects that you can meet their need.

D: After piquing their interest, focus on building the DESIRE necessary for your prospect to take action (or to convert).

A: Propelled by the desire you’ve fueled in your prospect they now take ACTION . . . to buy, to download or to convert in some fashion.

S: Finally, you want your one-time customer to be SATISFIED so that they will become a repeat customer and ultimately a loyal customer that will recommend you to others.

In the weeks to come I will be posting ideas of the kinds of content that you can publish online that will help move your prospects through the AIDAS model.  What do you think?  How do you persuade potential customers to take action?  How do you figure out what’s in it for them?

AIDAS graphic credit: Michelle Bashaw

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Posted by: Steve Machesney
Email the author: stevem@fathom.net