“NASA”… “Nobel Prize-winning”… “Harvard doctors… “Stanford discovery”… “MIT scientists…”
What do all of these have in common?
They’ve earned me and many other copywriters a pretty penny in royalties when we’ve used these words and phrases in our promo headlines and other copy!
At least when it comes to promos for the nutritional supplement market. Which is what we’re looking at in today’s breakdown.
But you have to do much more than simply insert one of these tried-and-true credibility boosters into your headline or subject line to get yourself a big winner.
As you’re about to see, it’s the artful execution of dozens of copywriting tactics… some less obvious than others… that lead to a successful promotion.
Last month, one of your fellow Copy Insiders submitted an online sales page for an energy-boosting supplement. I can’t attest to its success, but I will say there’s a lot here to study and learn from that’s done quite well.
So let’s start with taking a look at the main headline and lead at the top of the page…
(note: I’ve linked all of the images directly to the sales page link so you can read through the entire promo later).
The copy and graphics here are telling a compelling story. The NASA headline and opening story are generally eye-grabbing and you keep reading because you want to know where this is going.
The lead almost goes on a little too long, but in the first crosshead it brings the reader into the picture and ties back to the energy-boosting benefit promised in the main headline.
I think the main headline and the sentence following it are strong. My only quibble is the deck copy below it could be stronger.
I feel it could benefit from bringing in the cause of low energy (you’re running on 80% fewer mitochondria, though I wouldn’t mention the term “mitochondria” right up front since many people have heard it before) and that this uniquely solves that problem.
That would dimensionalize the mechanism a bit more. “5000X more efficiently” almost sounds a bit scary when it comes to energy-boosting (kind of like “Death Coffee” on steroids!) It would also dimensionalize the hidden underlying cause (or the mechanism of the problem).
The copy gets into this concept later with a nice chart but it could work better, along with the credibility-boosting Harvard quote about mitochondria, by possibly coming earlier.
As you read through the promo, you’ll see that overall the copy is smoothly written. There’s a good flow and you glide through the copy without any “speed bumps”.
There’s lots of “future pacing” (painting a picture of what life with the product will be like) woven artfully throughout the promo…it doesn’t just insert it at the beginning and in the close section.
Now I’m going to jump ahead to give you a few examples of copy tactics you can apply to any promo you write. After the first star ingredient (PQQ) is introduced, it introduces ubiquinone, which is basically CoQ10, next.
Unlike PQQ, CoQ10 risks being seen as “old news”…but the copywriter deftly makes something that could seem old appear new again.
It does so by bringing in the M.D. who discovered it into the story. It then boosts credibility by name-dropping “Nobel Prize” and showing a picture of the product spokesperson with the “trailblazing M.D.”…
Now let’s look at another copywriting tactic that’s used to elevate the product and make it seem even more unique and powerful.
After the PQQ and ubiquinone ingredients are introduced, the copy talks about how much better the two work together…a super-additive effect that makes the combination even more effective…
This section makes it clear to the prospect that they can’t just go out and buy PQQ or ubiquinone and get these benefits…they have to take them together. They have to take THIS formula.
The above copy also includes a great example of how to dramatize the results of a study as proof, and tell it like a story instead of simply recite the dry, boring details.
Also note again how good a job the copywriter is doing of weaving in future pacing throughout, reminding the prospect of what this combination can do for them.
Now let’s look at another effective sales tactic the promo copy is using: overcoming all possible objections…
One challenge with focusing on “more energy” as a main promise is that even though it’s something many older adults want, it may not be seen as pressing as perhaps constant joint pain, digestive distress, or memory loss.
But beyond that, there’s the challenge of overcoming objections. People are wary of stimulant-like effects, getting too wired up, feeling like they’re on “speed”, effects it could have on their heart rates, those kinds of concerns. (It’s one reason I raised the concern about the “5000X” figure in the main headline deck copy.)
However, the above section of copy does a great job of overcoming these possible objections to an energy-boosting product. It emphasizes the fact that it’s compliant with GMP safety standards, doesn’t contain any bad stuff like artificial colors or heavy metals, and “has zero side effects–not even a single jitter.”
The copy also demonstrates the ease of use (just one easy-to-swallow softgel in the morning) and brings in more future-pacing…painting the picture of the prospect feeling more “alive, focused, and in control”.
Ultimately that’s what many supplement buyers are in search of: greater control. Aging is a cruel beast…the constant battle and frustration with not being able to do the things they used to is something that makes older adults yearn for more control.
Now let’s look at a section of the promo where they’re playing up the exclusivity of the formula…and “sealing off all the doors” to other ways of getting this product…
This copy doesn’t beat around the bush. It knows you’re already online in front of your computer or staring into your smartphone. So it knows you may already be surfing Amazon to see if you can get the product at a better price.
It calls this out directly, and seals off all the doors so that it’s clear you can ONLY get the product by ordering it on this page. It then re-emphasizes the quality and uniqueness of the formula and ingredients to provide added assurance.
The photo of Dr. Sears with the patients makes it even clearer that this is what he uses at his clinic with his patients…giving it more of an exclusive feel and showcasing that it’s safe to use.
Okay, we’re going to look at ONE more persuasion tactic the copywriter is using here before we wrap this baby up. It’s helping the prospect pre-experience the product…
Reading this copy you can’t help but see yourself ripping that “discrete” package open and using it right away. This copy encourages product usage as well as closes the sale.
It also builds urgency by bringing in scarcity while providing social proof: “…continues to rocket through thousands of American households every day–faster than we can keep it in stock at times”. This sets the prospect up for ordering more, increasing average order value (AOV).
It’s also building up the prospect and tapping into deeper emotions here…this is who they are supposed to be, they’ve been unfairly denied this until now.
The clincher is that crosshead that follows: “write a new chapter in your life”…a promise of living life without regrets.
Implied is the fact that the only thing you might regret is not ordering. It’s brilliant stuff!