In marketing, an addict is someone who must have or use your product or service and will do so repeatedly. Robert Allen came up with 12 principles of persuasion to create this effect. Here, I apply these principles to startup businesses.
1. Give Gifts
For online businesses it is fairly easy to give gifts. Anything from free memberships to actual prizes can help; however, you must remember to understand your market and what types of gifts they would desire.
2. Take Baby Steps
Don't try to get your users to make large commitments up front. If your end goal is to get a business to purchase an upgrade, first get them signed up, then actively participating, then on a free trial program. If your service has proven value to that business they will upgrade and cause some viral marketing.
Highlight press, awards and recognition and continue to create buzz. This helps establish credibility and trust.
If your team has relevant experience, certifications, credentials and/or degrees, make those items visible.
A good example of this tactic is the beta invite program. Give a limited amount of access to a select few and you have created scarcity. It is important to use this tactic hand in hand with creating buzz.
It takes a long time to build trust, don't ruin it by diverging from the truth.
7. Create Rapport
Establish a relationship with your users. Personally address and respond to your users whenever possible.
8. Create Urgency
When you run promotions; first, always vary them, and secondly, make sure there is a hard deadline.
9. Create Pleasure
Make your product or service irresistible to use or buy. Combine all of these points in a manner that makes it more painful to not use your product or service.
10. Create a Fear of Loss or Pain
Highlight reasons why not using your product or service will cause some loss or pain.
Create a community and encourage participation.
Create some mystery that causes users to check out your offerings out of curiosity.
At ThemBid.com we take each marketing idea and run it through this list in order to assign a priority.
Elmer Thomas Jr. is Founder of Above the Limit, Inc., an award winning web and software development company dedicated to bridging the digital divide. You can find out more about Mr. Thomas at www.AboveTheLimit.com.
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