How to tap into your prospect's sense of betrayal

Few things can anger you like betrayal.

My pop-psychology observation: It takes a long time to build trust in a relationship. And during each stage of deepening that trust, you’re using your logical powers to evaluate whether the trust is deserved or not. When someone betrays that trust, not only are you angry at them for doing so, you’re a bit angry at yourself for trusting them to begin with.

We’d like to think that we’re smarter than that.

Nonetheless, betrayal happens. And if you can use the perception of betrayal in your copy, you’ve found a powerful ally toward gaining your prospect’s trust because you’ll protect them from being betrayed by the Big Bad Wolf.

How to Use Betrayal In Your Marketing

Betrayal infers intentional deception. When your prospect is looking for products or services to trust, they also usually have their BS detector turned on. They are looking for anything that will cause them to doubt the trustworthiness of a product’s claims. If they sense something is “not quite right,” they won’t buy.

To use betrayal in your marketing, you have to first, find your prospect’s vulnerability, the areas where they placed their trust. Find instances where this trust was taken advantage of and abused.

As an example: if you’re selling a software program that boosts productivity, you can hammer on other business software tools that don’t quite measure up to expectations.

“Have You Been Burned Too Many Times By MS Outlook?”

“It’s time that you stop getting ripped-off by cloud solutions that just don’t work.”

“XYZ Company claims to help you… but a sneaky back-door feature is actually exposing your sensitive data.”

Channeling Betrayal and Offering Relief

Once you’ve triggered the emotion of betrayal, you need to first, define the “enemy,” which in this case is the person, company, or group that has deceived your prospect, and then offer an alternative.

The alternative would then be your product or service. And specifically, it would be how your product or service would not take advantage of the prospect and would take away the pain of the initial betrayal by the “enemy.”

Your prospect wants to avoid being duped again. So focus your benefits on helping them by gaining their trust. Make them feel smart and safe for choosing you.

The Long Tail of Trust

I consider trust to be a sacred contract you make with your customer.

You can have the best copy in the world convince your prospect that you’re not like “the rest of them,” those snake-oil salesmen who prey on the desperate hopes of others.

But if, after getting the sale, you fail to live up to your end of the bargain, you’ll be tossed into the same heap as the rest of those swindlers.

So if you’re promising a better product or service, make sure you have an excellent customer service system in place that will do whatever it takes to keep your customer’s trust. Bend over backward to make sure they’re satisfied.

Expose whatever “broken windows” you have in your business and patch them up. Then apologize profusely to your customer for not noticing them in the first place.

Such gestures go a long, long way toward building trust with your prospects and customers. Netflix used to do this. Other businesses are learning.

If you consistently work hard to maintain trust with your customers, then you’ll be on your way toward having a customer for life.

In my estimation, this is the whole point of being in business.

Want more Trigger Emotions Deep Dives? Here you go:

Trigger Emotions Deep Dive: Anger

Trigger Emotions Deep Dive: Fear



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