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Closing the Deal – Persuasive Blogging Part V

Posted By Darren Rowse 26th of August 2006 Miscellaneous Blog Tips 0 Comments

Commitment“Desire is the key to motivation, but it’s determination and commitment to an unrelenting pursuit of your goal – a commitment to excellence – that will enable you to attain the success you seek.” – Mario Andretti

The last step in the process to writing a persuasive blog post is to lead your readers to a point of commitment to the action that you’re asking them to take.

Having worked on their desire to make some changes they should be feeling motivated to do so – but depending upon the action you’re asking for they could be feeling some level of ‘fear’ about what might happen if they do step out and do something.

Many people find change to be a scary thing and so it might be time for a little reassurance to get them over the line.

Here are a few tips on seeking commitment from readers.

Ask for a Specific Response

One of the best things you can do at this point is to give a small first step for the action you are asking for. Make it as specific as possible and consider making it bite sized enough that it’s achieveable but not so small that it’s not significant.

Add Accountability

People follow through on commitments to a much higher extent if they know other people know about the action that they’ve committed themselves to. Invite your readers to let you know about the commitment that they’ve made, or to do something public about it (leave a comment, write on their own blog about it, participate in some forum you might have).

The other thing great thing about this is that people like to feel that they are part of something larger than themselves and that they’re in a movement of people like themselves taking specific action. Create an atmosphere of ‘we’re doing this together’ and you’ll get people achieving so much more.

Personal Reassurance

If you’re able to give it you might like to make a commitment to help the reader through the action you’re asking them to take. Even if it’s just asking them to email you if they have problems can be enough to get people over the line and take some action.

Once again – in this last stage it’s useful to tell your own story and to use ‘inspirational’ pictures of what can be to help people move past their fear to commitment.

Follow Up

Also know that people’s fear doesn’t always end once they’ve taken the action you’ve asked them to take.

I started this series by talking about some of the sales guys I met when searching for a new car. One of the things I liked about the one that ended up getting the sale (we bought a Honda CRV) was that his sales process didn’t stop at the moment we signed on the dotted line and handed him the cheque.

The day after we took the car home and again a week later he rang to see how we liked it and if there were any problems. What he was doing was helping us to get through our ‘buyers remorse’.

Good sales people know that when they sell a big item that the purchaser often feels some sort of remorse or concern a day or two after their purchase. They might worry that they’ve made the wrong decision or that they spent too much etc.

Good sales people know this and it is often a time that they’ll call or write to reassure that the buyer made a good decision.

In the same way – ongoing interactions with readers can go a long way too. If someone’s gone out of their way to do something you’ve asked them to do you should do as much as you can to acknowledge it and thank them. If they’ve made some significant decision as a result of something you’ve written even just a simple email congratulating them and letting them know you’ve noticed what they’ve done can have a real impact.

The Art of Persuasive Blogging

I hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s series on persuasive blogging.

Over the week we’ve looked at:

  1. Getting Attention – taking potential readers from your a state of Rejection to Attention
  2. Stimulating Interest – moving readers from Indifference to Interest in your writing
  3. Conviction – taking readers on a journey from Skepticism that what you’re writing about is the right action to Conviction that it is and that they should do something about it
  4. Creating Desire – helping readers to move out of a state of Procrastination to a state of Desire to do what you are asking them to do
  5. Seeking Commitment – leading readers past their Fear to Commitment to take action

A lot more could be said on persuasive blogging and I invite you to share your experiences both of being persuaded as a blog reader but also of being the persuader.

I’d also be particularly interested in hearing your reaction to the process that I’ve outlined this week. Give it a go in your next post and let me know how it goes.

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.
  • This series really hit home for me and has given me a fresh approach to my own blogging. There were some aspects of the process that I feel were already being incorporated but by combining all of those elements together, I think it will make for a much more enjoyable blog.

    I’m sure that I will be making many references back to this series as there are things that I probably missed in the first read. Thank you for providing this series.

  • Pingback: Bloggers Buzz » Blog Archive » Persuasive Blogging Part V - Closing the Deal()

  • Hey Darren,

    Sounds like your points are based on the “AIDA” formula —


    Funny how some of the “classic” copywriting techniques show up in a 21st century mode of communication, isn’t there? :)

  • Tony – interestingly I came across AIDA halfway through writing this series. Looks like whoever came up with the communication wheel that I was taught based it on AIDA (or the other way around).

  • While I haven’t read the staple of copywriting books I have delved into a few, and have been keeping tabs on the ‘on-line’ copywriting scene for a while (?10 years) in its variety of forms — from 20 “bootcamps” to all day extravaganzas.

    The “funny” thing (not funny if you’ve spent sacks of cash) is that the fundamentals don’t really change. At all.

    What seems important is how copywriting links with the over all strategy of direct marketing, where it really has a critical role.

    Integrating it into a larger DM strategy is where copywriting as Ogilvy, Halbert and all the rest seems to really shine.