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  • Writer's pictureDavid de Souza

Persuasive Copywriting: 80/20 Summary

Updated: Feb 10, 2022


Mental Models from the book:

'Persuasive Copywriting' can be summarised into 7 mental models:

1. Curiosity Instinct

  • Reveal a secret (or a lie) in headlines.

2. Desire

  • Make a promise that is: (1) Commanding (2) Specific (3) Desirable. For example: Earn your annual salary by working 4 hours a week.

3. Ego

  • Both flattery (and greed) are one of the most powerful motivators. Use them at the start of your copy.

4. Emotions

  • Emotions cause buying vs information (that causes analysis). You want your reader to act.

  • We make a snap emotional decision to buy a product. We then look for information to rationalize our decisions.

  • Find your reader's pain point and you've found your way into their emotions.

5. Language Instinct

  • The do/don't of adjectives and adverbs:

    1. Don't tell how great something is, let the reader decide.

    2. Information, not emphasis.

    3. Evoke the emotional response you are looking for. Do not describe your emotions. Readers do not care how the writer is feeling.

    4. Don't say it was night: show the reader it was night by saying "the moon reflected in the lake".

6. Narrative Instinct

  • 'You aren't selling the product you are selling the experience of ownership'.

7. Vividness Bias

  • If your product stimulates the senses, then describe how.


Mental Model Mind Maps

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