Key lessons from the book The Brain Audit - The 7 red bags of consumer psychology

✈️ Don't miss these 7 bags on the proverbial conveyor belt of marketing

Key lessons from the book The Brain Audit - The 7 red bags of consumer psychology
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When you last came from the airport, did you get all your bags from the baggage conveyor belt?
That’s a crazy question right.
Of course you got all your bags. No one leaves the airport without their luggage.
Now apply the same logic to your potential customer.
Your marketing, copywriting and landing pages are the conveyor belt.
And your customer is waiting to pick up 7 bags from the conveyor belt. Only if you deliver those 7 bags will they buy your product. If you don’t deliver, they’ll never buy.
This is the core insight of the book - “The Brain Audit” by Sean D’Souza. Its a fantastic book that explains the pschological reasons behind why customers buy, or why they don’t buy.
A must read!
And the 7 proverbial red bags?
These are the 7 factors that determine if your potential customers think your product is worth it or not.
Let’s go over them quickly -

1. Problem

What is the core problem you’re trying to solve? Identify that, and start your message with that.
Always start with the problem, because that’s what our brains are attracted to the most.
Problems are a natural magnet for the brain. Here’s a quote from the book -
Pain and problems are a natural magnet for the brain. We can see how they instantly get our attention in our day to day lives. We should be using the power of problems in all our communication, marketing and advertising.”
But don’t throw too many problems at the customer at once. Don’t overwhelm them.
Isolate and elevate 1 core problem that you solve. And make all your messaging about that 1 problem.
Once you’ve elevated the problem, ease the customer’s brain with the solution.

2. Solution

Craft a solution as carefully as the problem. The sequence of the problem followed by the solution that makes the message so much more effective.
That’s why I love the PAS copywriting framework. I try to use it everywhere in my messaging.
Your solution should focus solely on the 1 problem you’ve highglighted previously. And be as clear about it as possible. Here’s a quote from the book -
“Not being too creative or clever is important, because the customer is not looking for a clever answer. They have a problem. You’ve identified the problem. They want a solution. Give them the solution.“
Clear over clever. Always!

3. Target customer profile

Don’t try to serve to everyone.
Even if your product can help everyone. Never use that in your marketing.
Because when you’re for everyone, you’re for no one.
Instead, call out the exact, narrow user persona in your copy, be as specific as possible. This will perk up their ears and get their attention.
This is when they will focus on your message.
This is also when objections will start to emerge in their minds. Objections which you need to tackle head on.

4. Objections

Here’s a quote from the book -
“When a customer is confused, or has questions that need to be answered, they don’t usually pick up the phone and call you. They almost never email you or text you. Or send a carrier pigeon. They simply mull over the objection in their minds, and then they procrastinate.
Objections are obvious, don’t try to run away from them, instead take them head on. Empathize with the customer, and tackle each objection.
This is how great copy is written.
List down the top objections your customers can have (or use AI to make this list)
Then write a counter point to each of those objections, and include it in your copy, or your FAQs.
Usual objections are -
  • “This is not for me” - Call out the user persona, say exactly who this is for.
  • “This is too expensive” - Explain how the value the customers can get is way more than the price they have to pay.
  • “This doesn’t work” - Show case studies, examples, testimonials from previous customers.
Let’s talk about testimonials -

5. Testimonials

Testimonials are super important. They’re proof that your product works. But don’t go with any random testimonial, in fact, get a “reverse testimonial” from your customer.
I’ll let Sean explain -
A reverse testimonial talks about doubt. It starts with the skepticism first. It describes the fear or uncertainty racing through the customer’s mind at the point of purchase.”
The book recommends 6 questions to ask your existing customers to get powerful reverse testimonials -
  1. What was the obstacle that would have prevented you from buying this product/service?
  1. What did you find as a result of buying this product/service?
  1. What specific feature did you like most about this product/service?
  1. What would be three other benefits about this product/service?
  1. Would you recommend this product/service?
  1. Is there anything you’d like to add?
The answers to these questions will ensure you get effective testimonials.

6. Risk Reversal

Risk is what stops your customers from buying. How do they know you’re legit? How do they know YOU have skin in the game?
If you don’t take a risk, why should your customers take a risk?
To reverse their risk - offer a money back guarantee, or a free trial, or a free version of your product.
Be confident of your product and reverse the risk for the customer.

7. The USP

This is the final bag, the last hurdle you must cross, and the question is - Why YOU?
What’s your unique selling proposition?
What’s your unique positioning? The cool thing is that you can choose your unique positioning yourself. You can invent it!
A few quotes from the book to make you think -
“You don’t find your uniqueness; you invent it. Choose one of the factors you want to be the best at, and then build your business around that factor of uniqueness.”
What’s the one reason you set up your business? What do you want to do, differently from everyone else? What’s your dream for your customer? “
“The uniqueness has to be invented. Make it up. Think of your wildest wish; your wildest dream and write it down.”
This was a very refreshing take about uniqueness and positioning.

Final Recap -

The 7 red bags of consumer psychology are -
  1. The Problem
  1. The Solution
  1. Target Customer Profile
  1. Objection Handling
  1. Testimonials
  1. Risk Reversal
  1. Uniqueness and Positioning
From the book - The Brain Audit by Sean D’Souza. Grab it and read it today, it’s a fantastic book.

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