Because only rookies write from scratch, I have pulled together 5 copywriting formulas that will help you write super-persuasive sales copies…
Listen: A few days ago, I was scrolling across the web. And I have found a so-called “copywriter” that offers courses on becoming better at copywriting.
But when I saw the sales page, I almost threw up. It was crazy. He first talked about himself, then he has written the headline and he immediately stated the offer.
The emotion was nearly at the end of the copy, and it was so poor that I wouldn’t buy the course even if somebody would point a gun at my head. (Copywriting formulas mean nothing to him.)
That’s why I got the idea of writing this blog post that will show you 5 copywriting formulas that will help you write super-persuasive sales messages…
Without them…well you will sell nothing. That’s it. So chain yourself to the chair, take a drink, hold your socks, and get really excited because we are starting right away!
1. Copywriting Formula: AIDA
If you’ve never heard of it, AIDA is a model that is widely used in both copywriting and marketing circles.
The copywriting formula describes the various steps that occur from when a person enters the Awareness stage of your marketing funnel to when they ultimately make a Decision.
The concept of AIDA originated in 1898 when Elias St. Elmo Lewis, who was eventually inducted into the Advertising Hall of Fame, wrote a column (anonymously) about three advertising principles that he found useful throughout his career.
That column appeared in The Inland Printer, one of the most influential 19th-century American magazines, and stated that all successful advertisements should follow a certain copywriting formula.
AIDA was born.
So how this formula works? Nothing too complex…
In the first stage of this copywriting formula, you have to grab consumers’ attention. That is done with your headline and opening.
The headline needs to contain a big promise, arouse curiosity, and appeal to their emotions.
When the consumer will read the headline they should think “I will just DIE if I won’t find out more!”
That’s when you got something.
The next thing you need to pay attention to is your opening. The opening should also contain a promise and tell them why they need to read your sales copy.
An opening is super-important because it’s the part where you will lose most of your readers.
But this is just the beginning…
Attracting attention is one thing. But HOLDING the attention is completely another thing.
And that is the second part of this copywriting formula.
You can do this by mentioning a problem your audience is facing. A problem that is eating them alive. A problem they would beg on their knees to solve.
If you will talk about it, you will hold their attention. And no copywriting formula will work without your reader’s attention. Psychological triggers insanely help here!
Or you can make the copy personal. Personality works like hell. Tell them something like “I desperately need your help!”, then expand that thing, and you did more than just held their attention…
Most people have the “A” and “I” but they completely forget the “D”.
The desire stage of this copywriting formula is where you appeal to their desires by showing them what you have to offer.
Here is where you will explain the features and benefits, where you will make them imagine how they are using your product or service.
You also want to use bullet points to make sure they won’t miss a single benefit of your product or service. And this is also the part where you will make the price a non-issue.
This is the stage of this copywriting formula where you will make their lives better and where you will appeal to their emotion as much as you can. [Logic matters as well!]
If you have done this properly, then you the reader should be ready to buy, so we need to move on!
Now it’s time to make them act!
In this stage of this copywriting formula, you want to play with the call-to-action and create a huge sense of urgency.
The call-to-action needs to challenge the reader, include a summary, and of course, tell them to act!
The problem is that people love to procrastinate.
They want to put things until tomorrow. But tomorrow never happens!
So you need to create a massive sense of urgency. You want to make them act NOW instead of tomorrow. You can accomplish that by creating a limited offer, giving them a deadline, telling them that the price will go up soon, etc.
But you need to make them act. Tomorrow never happens. As famous copywriter Victor Schwab said, “Procrastination kills sales!”
2. Copywriting Formula: P-A-S
The P-A-S copywriting formula stands for problem-agitation-solution.
Copywriters can use formulas like PAS to save time and energy versus brainstorming completely unique combinations.
Copywriting formulas use proven and effective strategies that act as fill-in-the-blank templates.
So, while many copywriters are using the same formula, the copy will always come out unique.
You don’t have to worry about looking like everyone else because you’re writing for a completely different audience, product, etc.
This copywriting formula can also be used for everything from blog posts to sales letters to marketing emails and everything in between, too.
The sky is the limit!
Identify the problem your customers face. A business sells its products and services because those products and services fix a problem.
“Don’t you hate it when your light bulb needs replacing? It is so annoying having to go to the shop and buy a new one.”
This is the foundation of the whole copywriting formula. In the second stage, you will directly follow up on this step.
Without a problem the readers face, there is no reason to buy at all.
So you need to identify that problem and continue with the second stage…
What makes the problem stressful? What emotions do people experience when they face this problem? This is what you are trying to tap into in this stage of this powerful copywriting formula.
Amplify the problem so that readers become emotionally involved as they know what that negative experience is like.
This stage of this killer copywriting formula also resonates as an engaged reader identifies that the business understands its predicament.
“Don’t you hate going to bed once the sun goes down? It’s like you’re living in the 1300s. Yes, it is stressful not being able to turn on the light. Light bulbs should be easy to find and install.”
If you’ve made everything right, the reader should be so dedicated to solving that problem that they would travel around the world on a bicycle just to solve it…
And that’s when the third stage knocks in…
The last part of this copywriting formula is to offer a solution. This is where you will present your offer, and price, and tell them how you can solve their problems.
This is also the part where you will ask them to take action. Here you will make it rain!
“Our light bulbs shine brighter and longer than any other and will have you enjoying the evenings again in no time. You don’t have to lift a finger! We will send an experienced light bulb installer to your home to install our genuine light bulbs.”
Do you see the power of this copywriting formula?
This copywriting formula is my favorite. When I’m writing some kind of sales copy, I always use it. It is simple and it is powerful.
However, there is another copywriting formula that will make them buy…
3. Copywriting Formula: 4 P’s
This is not just for copywriters. It can be used to get better results from any of your writing, from marketing emails to blog posts, argumentative essays, to video scripts.
It can even be used offline in things like conversations with leads, public speaking…you name it.
Here’s how it works.
The 4Ps are Picture. Promise. Prove. Push.
Let’s go through them one at a time and see how they work together to convince the reader and motivate them to action.
So here we go…
This is the stage of copywriting formula where you paint a picture for the reader.
You use emotive language to get them to visualize how your product or service is going to change their life.
You don’t want any facts or figures (or other proof) here. Just straight-out emotive language that will paint a picture of how things are going to be when they adopt your solution. This should be as specific as possible. Use imagery to make it as real as possible.
The whole point of this step of this powerful copywriting formula is to get the reader to engage on an emotional level with whatever it is you’re promoting.
Remember: people make the decision to buy based on emotion. That’s what we’re doing here – appealing to their emotions.
In this stage of this copywriting formula, you will promise that the picture will come true if the reader will buy your product or service.
This promise is what your product (or content) is going to DO for the reader.
How will it improve their lives? What will it do for them?
These are all the questions you need to answer. Also, you should appeal to the logical side of the brain here.
Show them statistics, and studies, and give them strong logical reasons related to your product or service.
That will make them believe in the words you are saying. But this is not enough…
In this stage, you want to prove that what you are saying is true!
Now, you want to give them testimonials, a list of the clients you worked with, etc.
The testimonials should be based on the results your product or service creates.
“Working with XYZ was absolutely fabulous. He/she almost tripled our revenue. First, we couldn’t even believe our eyes. But now we know it. He/she is the best copywriter we’ve ever met.”
The example above is the kind of testimonial you want to use. This is the resulting testimonial. And in this copywriting formula, they are necessary.
Then there is the kind of good-feel testimonial that is absolutely worthless.
Here is an example:
“Working with XYZ was awesome!”
You don’t want to use these, because these testimonials are not reinforcing your claim in any way.
Now it’s time to take action. This step of this copywriting formula is pretty the same as the one in AIDA. So I’m not going to fill your head with the same stuff and let’s move on!
4. Copywriting Formula: ACCA
To make this a little bit different, I’m going to show you this copywriting formula in an infographic. If you want, you can download it after you will read it.
5. Copywriting Formula: H-O-C-O-B-T-V-G-C-U
What the hell Filip? H-O-C-O-B-T-V-G-C-U? What is this?
Let me explain. I got this copywriting formula from Dan Lok. It starts with a headline. Then it continues with opening, credentials, offer, bullets, testimonials, value justification, guarantee, call to action, and urgency.
It is quite different from the others isn’t it?
Well, this is actually a copywriting template. You will see for yourself.
There are many types of headlines, but my favorite ones are question headlines, newsy headlines, and how-to headlines.
Let’s take a closer look at them to make this copywriting formula (template) work even better…
Question headlines are engaging the reader’s mind and appeal to his or her self-interest.
Always appeal to readers’ emotions, arouse curiosity, and make them say “I’ll just die if I won’t find out more!” and you have done more than written an ultra-persuasive headline.
“How Does An Out-Of-Shape 55-Year-Old Golfer, Crippled By Arthritis & 71Lbs. Overweight, Still Consistently Humiliate PGA Pros In Head-To-Head Matches By Hitting Every Tee Shot Further And Straighter Down The Fairway?”
Use those headlines, use them properly, and the reader will read your message. Personally, I use question headlines really often when I’m using this copywriting formula.
And it is awesome.
The reason why headlines announcing something new are powerful is that people love new things!
When you use words such as new, introducing, announcing, discover, it’s here, at last, and just arrived, etc. in your headline, the reader will intend on reading your message if the headline appeals to his self-interest.
“New! Revolutionary! The Most Exciting Educational Breakthrough Of The Century! Guaranteed To Improve Your Child’s School Marks – Or You Pay Nothing!”
In other words, giving the reader news is an attention-grabbing gambit.
You don’t want to underestimate these super-new things!
The words ‘How-to’ are pure magic in advertising headlines, sales page headlines, and every other headline possible.
Many copywriters claim that if you begin your headline with how-to, you can’t fail. And my opinion is that they’re right.
How-to headlines offer the promise of solid information, advice, and solution to problems.
“Here’s How To Knock-Out One Revenue Generating Facebook Post, Email Or Sales Letter After Another…Without Writing!”
You should better start believing that this is one of the most super-powerful choices for crafting a riveting headline.
The next stage of this copywriting formula is opening.
The opening is crucial because it is where readers are most likely to stop reading if you don’t provide them with a sufficient reason to continue.
Ideally, it should immediately demonstrate that there are desirable rewards for reading the message. Also, it needs to be easily readable…
If you have a bad opening in your sales copy, you won’t sell a thing…
You can’t sell them if they quit reading after the first sentence.
Now you want to talk a little bit about yourself. You want to build that authority.
Everybody wants to do business with experts. Tell the reader about your experiences. If you have won some awards – tell them.
Tell them how many years you are in the business. How many successes have you had. How many customers or clients have you worked with.
People respect authority. And they trust it.
The next part of this copywriting formula is the offer.
This is where you will show them what you are offering and where you will show them the price.
Give them a solution to their problems. Show them every feature and benefit. Make them imagine that they are using your product or service, etc.
A bullet is a brief statement showing the benefit of your product or service.
They look like this:
- Lets you pay $24,000 less in taxes.
- Triples your revenue!
- You will discover a copywriting secret that will skyrocket your credibility to another level.
Bullets increase readability and appeal to your reader’s greed. Also, they let you show every benefit of your product or service.
But you need to prove your claim…
This is exactly the same as in the 4 P’s copywriting formula. So I’m not going to talk your ear off about it. Let’s move on…
Here you need to show the consumer why they should buy the product or service from you instead of the competition.
In other words, this is the Unique Selling Proposition.
Stress the unique feature or benefit of your product or service.
USP is a must if you want to sell something. If you want to create a killer USP click here.
Another stage of this copywriting formula is the guarantee…
Guarantees are shutting down the wall of cynicism, skepticism, and fear.
When you offer your prospect a strong guarantee you’re taking all the risk from their shoulders.
The more is the offer different, unbelievable, or unusual, the stronger the guarantee has to be.
Call To Action
The call to action (CTA) is part of the close.
Here, you must tell your reader exactly what to do, challenge them, and lighten the act of purchase as much as you can.
Some marketers miss this important step.
Even if it’s obvious to you what the reader ought to do next, you must direct them to do it.
Just because you have presented your offer doesn’t mean your prospect will buy what you’ve offered.
You have to close the sale. It’s no different from visiting a store and looking at a product you are interested in buying; even after all your questions have been answered, until a salesperson closes the sale with a question like, “How would you like to pay for that?” the sale isn’t made (unless you happen to be a highly motivated buyer, determined to buy that item then and there).
So close the sale with call-to-action phrases like:
- Learn More
- Order Now
- Unlock The Cash Vault Right Away!
Urgency turns up the heat under desire. Without it, desire will cool down to interest and interest will quickly turn to apathy and disinterest.
We put off taking action even for things we want for a variety of reasons. If you don’t get immediate action from your target group, there is a good chance they won’t come back. Out of sight, out of mind.
Here are some of the most common but powerful methods for creating sense of urgency:
• Deadline. Create limited-time offers. Urge them to respond in some period of time, and tell them that if they won’t, they won’t get a second chance.
• Limited Supplies. Create such offers as “Only 1,000 books available!” and you have created a great sense of urgency. Also, this device makes the offer exclusive.
• Bonuses For Fast Response. Offer them bonuses for responding in a certain period of time. For example: “And I’ll also give you FREE copywriting secrets report if you’ll respond by May 15th.”
Never, ever forget this step!
Without copywriting formulas you will sell absolutely nothing. They are absolutely necessary for you to succeed.
The first copywriting formula you can use is AIDA. This formula has its own place in the hall of fame of copywriting and it is used for hundreds of years. And it works like hell.
The second copywriting formula that you can use is P-A-S or Problem-Agitation-Solution. This is my favorite copywriting formula. It is simple and you can sell everybody with it…
The third copywriting formula that you can use is called 4 P’s. Or Picture-Promise-Prove-Push. This copywriting formula can also be used in blogging, writing newsletters, etc. It is great.
The fourth copywriting formula is called ACCA or Attention-Comprehension-Conviction-Action. This formula is also often used in marketing. Why? Because it works incredibly!
And the last copywriting formula is H-O-C-O-B-T-V-G-C-U. In fact, it is a template. With it writing sales copy will become much easier.
3 thoughts on “Best Copywriting Formulas [Infographics Included]”
I can’t thank the internet enough to make me stumble upon this post. This is sooooo good. Loved how you have explained everything in such detail yet with such ease. Thanks for this!
This is very helpful and I really want to write confidently in the future not just for marketing a product.
Thank you so much! Let me know if you want more posts like this in the future.😉