FACT: Your brain has been programmed from birth with powerful software that controls your every decision, every second of the day.
And it doesn’t matter where you live… what your religion… how much your income… or how your parents raised you. Truth is, you will carry this software to your grave.
Your customers and prospects are programmed the same way.
QUESTION: Do you know what your customers REALLY want?
Consumer researchers and psychologists do. They should – they’ve studied the subject for years! And while they don’t agree completely with every finding, there are eight foundational “desires” common to them all.
I call them the Life-Force 8 (LF8 for short). These eight powerful desires are responsible for more sales than all other human wants combined.
Here they are. Learn them. Use them. Profit from them.
The Life-Force 8:
1. Food and drink
2. To live longer
3. Freedom from fear and danger
4. To attract the opposite sex
6. To be superior
7. Welfare of loved ones
8. Social approval
Who could argue with these things? We all want them, don’t we? But in how many of YOUR ads are you openly using an appeal to one or more of the LF8? Few, if any, I bet.
Likely because no one ever told you to do so before! (Aren’t you glad you’re reading this article?)
Listen: When you create an advertising appeal based on any of the LF8, you tap into the power of Mother Nature herself. You tap into the very essence of what makes humans tick. You see… you can’t escape your desire for the LF8… it’s with you until the day you die.
Can you shake your desire to eat? (LF8 #1)
Can you suppress your want to survive? (LF8 #8).
How easily can you quash your desire for physical comfort? (LF8 #2)
Or, to make sure your child looks both ways before crossing the street? (LF8 #6).
You don’t need to conduct any studies to answer these questions. That’s because the answers are obvious. These things are ingrained in us. They’re part of what makes us human. They’re powerful.
And as a smart advertiser you can tap into them.
Let me introduce you to a master book seller. His name was E. Haldeman-Julius. During the 1920s and 30s he sold over 200 million of them, in nearly 2,000 different titles. They were simple little books. And they all sold for just 5 cents each.
To advertise his little books, he placed an ad consisting of only the books’ titles. If a book didn’t sell well, he’d change only the title, and then study the ad response.
Amazing! Look what happened when the titles were changed and based on the LF8:
>OLD TITLE: Ten o’clock – SALES: 2,000
NEW TITLE: What Art Should Mean to you -SALES: 9,000 (LF8 #6)
>OLD TITLE: Fleece of Gold – SALES: 5,000
NEW TITLE: Quest for a Blonde Mistress – SALES: 50,000 (LF8 #4)
>OLD TITLE: Art of Controversy – SALES: 0
NEW TITLE: How to Argue Logically – SALES: 30,000 (LF8 #6)
>OLD TITLE: Casanova and His Loves – SALES: 8,000
NEW TITLE: Casanova, History’s Greatest Lover – SALES 22,000 (LF8 #4)
>OLD TITLE: Apothegms – SALES: 2,000
NEW TITLE: Truth About the Riddle of Life – SALES: 9,000 (LF8 #2)
According to Haldeman-Julius, the two strongest appeals are sex and self-improvement. Surprised? Neither am I. Yet, I ask you again: How many of your current ads contain either of these appeals?
Now, while we have many wants other than the LF8, (such as the desire to be healthy, fashionable, intelligent) but these are learned wants. Yes, we actually have to learn to want these things. When we’re born, our first thoughts don’t include wanting to put on a pair of alligator shoes and hop into a Rolls Royce Silver Seraph, do they? No. We want food. Security. We cry out for comfort.
That means the LF8 are biologically programmed into us. Hardwired, if you will. Just like your reflexes. No matter how much to try to train yourself to not pull away from a hot stove, your brain’s hardwired response will send a signal to your arm and hand and ZZZZIIIIPPP! Your hand snaps back before you even think about.
Bottom Line: the LF8 are the strongest of all.
So, what does all this mean to us as advertisers? That those other wants are less dependable. They’re less dependable “hooks” to use to persuade people to buy what we’re selling.
But guess what? Those other less dependable wants are those things that so many less informed advertisers try to tap into! Poor guys. (And they wonder why they’re not working.) Hey, why recreate the wheel? It’s been proven that using the LF8 is the most efficient way to tap into people’s brains. Using anything else is like filling up your car with el-cheapo gas when the fiery, super high-octane stuff is in the next pump!
So stop racking your brain over how to tap into the human mind. Simply see which of these “hard-wired” appeals already exist and tap directly into them. That’s what the most successful advertisers do. It’s a remarkable shortcut, don’t you think?