How to Get People to Stop Reading Your Ads

by Lou

In 1795, Napoleon Bonaparte had to give a talk to his army. An invasion of Italy was about to begin, and although the Austrian army would outnumber his men by 2 to 1, his success at Piedmont a month before encouraged him to make greater and faster conquests with what he had.

So on a warm Milano night, when he stepped up to the microphone and gave his speech to his 5,000 strong army of mainly Savoyards…

STOP. Everyone knows that Napoleon gave this talk in 1796. But see what happens when you have a wrong fact or incongruent message? Check your internal experience. What did you say to yourself when you came across such a wrong fact (Ai)? Any unpleasant internal kinesthetics (Ki)?

This is what will happen to you if your ads contain any errors, lies, and over-the-top hyperbole. An internal experience that could have prospective customers saying “Yuck!” and ignoring your ad, your message, and your business.

And yet I see these type of ads all the time. They’re especially prevalent in the Biz Ops and Internet marketing ads. (I think written mainly by people with little copywriting experience.)

Take an ad you’re thinking of making public, but before you do, hand it to your skeptical friend, John, who has a finely tuned B.S. Detector (and isn’t afraid to use it) and let him read it. Does he find any incongruities and inconsistencies?

Don’t have any friends who like to tell you the truth? Fine. If you can handle the criticism, go to an online copywriter’s forum, sign up and post your ad there for a critique. They will be plenty of people willing to help.

* By the way, don’t bother emailing me about the use of microphones in the late 18th century. I know they only used solar power’d megaphones back then; I was just trying to make a point.

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