5 Factors that Motivate Impulse

I’m sure that most of us have seen this list before, but I re-encountered it last week and thought it might be something we could all benefit from reviewing.

There are 5 factors of impulse that most often lead to a purchase:

 Value Factor

“This is worth more than you will be paying for it.”

 A transaction is a value exchange, and all customers want more for less. Establish a high product value in the customer’s mind, preferably a price at which they might contemplate purchasing. When they encounter the actual price tag they will be pleasantly surprised. This can help to mitigate some of the sticker shock that we encounter on base packages. Pre-Pub and Community Pricing also do a good job utilizing this factor. How can we leverage it on our other channels?

 Sense of Urgency

“If you don’t buy this, you might not be able to later.”

 We do this very well. Almost every flight plan has a series of “don’t miss out” messaging. Not much to say here, I thinks we’ve mastered this.

 Fear of Loss

“You need to act now, or you’ll run out of time.”

 Fear of loss is more powerful than the hope of gain. “Fear of loss” is subtly different than the “sense of urgency.” It implies an uncertain deadline. It demands an instant action. Best used in places where the customer CAN take instant action. Avoid “fear of loss” messaging anywhere that’s more than 2 clicks from a purchase.

 Jones Effect

“You need this if you’re going to keep up with the times.”

 Nobody wants to be the first person to buy. Whenever possible, highlight someone who has already become a satisfied customer of our product. Celebrity endorsements are great, but sometimes pointing out a regular joe who has bought and benefited from the product can accomplish everything that you need. And the average joe is almost always more relatable than a celebrity.


“Its okay if you don’t buy this, someone else will.”

 Never act desperate. We have a great product, and everybody knows it. Make an offer, but don’t beg. Be careful though, too much indifference can make you sound snobby.

 We use some of these factors really often– value and urgency– but others less often. How can we hit more of these triggers with our messaging?

Pitching makes a huge difference

The intern hack-a-thon taught me a lot about the importance of constantly growing the skill of pitching.

Learning how to pitch can make a huge difference in your career.

You can use pitching skills to:

  • Drive customers to open emails, click on buttons and place orders
  • Get approval for, and excitement about, your ideas
  • Persuade others that your project or request deserves more focus or a higher priority (or that it should be canceled)
  • Recruit awesome people to join our team
  • Convince a publisher to let us put their books into our format
  • Ask for  a promotion and/or a raise

The intern hack-a-thon: pitching skills can make or break it

As a marketing mentor for the intern hack-a-thon I had the opportunity to to hear three versions of almost every team’s pitches:

1. Friday at lunch they gave pitches to recruit team members

  • As I watched groups formed I realized that convincing the right team member to join a team could make or break the team’s success.
  • The max team size was five members. There was a team that started with two members and didn’t recruit anyone else through their initial pitch. They ended up being the only team that was not able to demonstrate a working prototype.

2. Saturday morning I met with most of the teams about their product pitches

  • Two of the teams sent me stuff to review ahead of time. One team sent me an email the night before asking for data to quantify the potential revenue their product could produce. Another team sent me a written pitch that showed they had really thought through the business and marketing implications of their product.
  • Both of the teams that prepared in advance ended up winning.
  • One team I met with had “something” missing from their product. As we talked we realized it was that the presenter wasn’t passionate about the product.
  • During my meetings it was interesting to see that some teams joined together in crafting their pitches while others delegated it to a single member.

3. Saturday after lunch the interns presented their pitches and demos for the judges

  • It was stressful! The main conference room was filled with tension and excitement.
  • The pitches/demos were timed (4 minutes) with a 1-minute warning. No additional time was given for technical malfunctions.
  • The judges asked questions for 5-6 minutes. The questions were intense and topics included: revenue implications, how revenue estimates were determined, why a specific coding language was used, why an app wasn’t integrated into Faithlife, how long it would take to get the code ready to ship, etc.

Some take aways

  • If others don’t buy-in or join in, you probably need to refine your pitch or come up with a different idea.
  • If you don’t feel passionately about your idea or products others probably won’t either.
  • You can give an excellent pitch and still not win.
  • Pitches don’t have to be perfect to be successful.
  • Presenting pitches with a team is useful because they can answer questions that you can’t.
  • Planning the “go-to-market” pitch with the entire team led to greater insights and better presentations then when the marketers worked on their pitches separately from their teams.

Here’s a few articles I thought were interesting on this subject:

You may also want to check out this video that Jim shared with the interns: https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=mB5VVxWre2M

I’m currently reading Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In and getting ready to start Spin Selling. If anyone wants to do a book discussion group on either one, let me know.

Do you have any other articles (or books) you would recommend?

How to Attract Wild Animals with your Copy

This article from Unbounce.com offers some great tips for copy writing, specifically applicable to our product and POS pages. It will be most useful for my fellow interns, all of you who have been here for a while can correct me where I am wrong and add any additional thoughts.

I really like the analogy and the end of the article that describes customers as “wild animals foraging for food.” In this case their “food” is information and their “foraging grounds” are on the web. It is important to concisely communicate the benefits of our various products to customers, while acknowledging that each customer base has different needs. This article provides a quick checklist for writing compelling copy; I summarized the most important points below and how I connected each to the Voice of Logos.

stinky copy

  1. Know your reader. Your target audience should heavily impact your voice depending on your target denomination, and purpose for using our product (preaching, scholarly study, self-help/study, etc.).
  2. Use appropriate language. Recognize the ideal time to address your reader directly, such as in sales pitches: Logos saves you time…. You save this much money when you buy now (these are the sweet desserts that lock down the sale) and when the reader expects dense, focused information (the main course of your copy).
  3. Don’t talk about yourself. Customers want to hear what we can do for them. Instead bragging about “lightning fast search results” talk about how quick and comprehensive searches save users time in their studies.
  4.  Be Concise. Enough said.
  5. Write each page like a book. We run thousands of promotions throughout the year. At any point a promotion could link to the page you are designing/writing and all kinds of Logos users (veterans, regulars, and newbs) will be seeing your page. Ask yourself, will they know where to go from here? We all know what to do after reading the first page of a book, you turn the page!
  6. Separate sales pitches from product information. When reading about a product the customer doesn’t want to be bombarded by requests to purchase. Give them the product information they are looking for upfront, and wrap up with compelling reasons to buy now.
  7. Avoid sentence bloat. No reason to fluff up the facts, just give them the facts.
  8. Web copy is not a science. What works for one customer base will not necessarily work for another.
  9. We are the best…. According to who? We all know we provide the best customer experience from purchase to everyday use, but no one likes to hear people brag. Use endorsements and examples to show how others appreciate our products.
  10.   Have a clear CTA. Your reader should never be wondering “what to do next” after reading your copy.

Lets feed those hungry animals!


100 Conversion Optimization Case Studies


Click to read 100 cases of optimization increasing conversion.100 cases


5 Ways to Grow Your Network

This post is specifically written with our new interns in mind. However, I hope it offers something of value to each of you.

Recently Bob gave a talk and specifically encouraged all interns to reach out to those in the company with influence. Request a lunch, coffee, or even group meeting. I hope you all take the list of emails sent out and score as many lunches and coffee meetings as possible.

With that aside, there are other things you can do to connect with those who work here, and those who work with Logos. Grab your coffee and take a deep breathe, I went a little lengthy on this one.

5 Ways to Grow Your Network

  1. Get on the internet. No seriously. Sign up for Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Pinterest, Stumble Upon, Reddit, YouTube, Riffle, SlideShare, Foursquare, Instagram, Vine, GetGlue, LinkedIn, Vimeo, WordPress, Pheed, About.Me, etc. Learn how the internet works by doing it. Connect with your closest family, friends, and acquaintances first. Then expand from there. Observe, participate, then create. This will help you become a better marketer and grow your network. Even if most of those accounts are a fake identity because you’re afraid of being on the internet, at least you’ll get a good taste. #Internet
  2. Follow ALL your supervisors—everywhere. Phil Gons doesn’t mind chalking up another follower. Are you connected to him on LinkedIn yet?(Don’t answer if that’s a no) Have you subscribed to PhilGons.com? Have you followed him on Twitter? Seriously, it’s nothing weird. It’s not even personalunless you decide to make it. It’s all business. Phil will likely school you in history, design, business, management, and social media while eating sardines and a side of almonds. Why not follow his lead and learn from him casually. When he interacts with individuals such as Tony Reinke and Andy Naselli, you now know who Phil sees as influencers–follow them. #NetworkExpanding
  3. Follow Bob and Daneverywhere. Ok, I don’t mean find their address and follow them home. (Although, rumor has it Dan will order you lunch in exchange for Flyer fan gear that is mailed to his house) I mean connect with them on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc. Bob has a killer SlideShare and what he said about his reading interests is true. He shares some of the awesomest stuff everyday. See who they chat with(which isn’t often, but happens) and follow those people. Comment on their content. I mean after all, “you’re just the young intern”. Take that card and run with it! #NetworkExpandingMore #BuildingKlout
  4. Collaborate and brainstorm with coworkers. Now I’m not talking about moonlighting. I’m talking about helping each other get better. Share the blog article you just found. Show your cubicle neighbor that article about how to specialize in using hashtags. Explain over lunch how you discovered Google Authorship can boost visibility for blogs and increase CTR via organic searches. By doing so you are giving first, building others up, and establishing yourself as a resource. #Value #LearnAndRelearn
  5. Put it to the test. Have a blog?(If no, go back to #1) Want to know how to build an email list, get followers on Twitter, run a giveaway, or land an interview with your favorite author? Do it! Just do it on your blog. Sign up for MailChimp. Setup a YouTube channel. Change themes for the learning benefit. Oh, and buy your name.com.<–This will only get more expensive and difficult the longer you wait. By doing these things your marketing colleagues, new found connections, and other internet surfers will want to connect. #GrownUpStage #boom

There’s a lot of other ways to connect with people. I’m very fond of grabbing coffee. Sometimes that’s not possible. I couldn’t do that with Steven Kryger today because he lives in Syndey, Australia. We had a Google Hangout instead. So use the internet(the world’s playground) for leverage. It won’t replace the need for face to face interaction, but can in handy a lot.

Some of you may have no desire to become internet famousthat’s ok. That’s not what this is about. It’s about you discovering what’s available. Who’s available. How to help them and how they can help you. This is about your education, you career, and your community.

I hope this was helpful. If I can be of any help, please let me know. I’ve got stories I’m willing to share, and hope to learn something from you. Oh, and following me is a really good start too. Nathan Smoyer


Did you know Outlook can be a great place to find your coworkers on Facebook and LinkedIn? You can easily spy who they’re chatting and connecting with too. Follow these steps:

  1. Open Outlook
  2. Click File
  3. Click “Account Settings”
  4. Click “Social Network Accounts”
  5. Done.

email connections

Each time you open an email from here on out, you can see the social activity of your coworkers within your email. Here, you can see I’m about lurk each of those LinkedIn accounts Jayson has recently connected too. If need be, I now know to ask Jayson to conduct an introduction.

Extra cool is this feature works on people from outside the company. When I chat with people from publishers, ministries, or Facebook pages, I want them to remember me. So I connect where I can. Top of mind, tip of tongue(clearly a Contagious reference, have you read that yet?). See how this works below.

email in linkedin

P. S. I purposefully did not post direct links to many of the people I said to follow or places to go. I hope you’ll learn to navigate the deep seas of the internet.


7 Marketing strategies that work better than advertising

Advertising-on-your-blog7 Marketing Strategies That Work Better Than Advertising

This is a great article and I think we as a company do a lot of these things.

How a can we “exploit” what we do well to drive more engagement?

How Boba Fett Sells Lightsabers & Plans Content

“Click-throughs? My gun clicks when I’ve gone through my ammo . . . .”

Good news: you just got the opportunity to promote base packages for the next three months. It’s a huge campaign, and your manager is sure it can bring in 1.5 million dollars. You’re cleared for two Logos Talk blog posts per week, and Lauron, Dark Lord of MarTar, is giving your campaign green lights on any email list you want to hit.

Now you need to plan out content. What will you say? Here’s one way I like to plan messaging—but let’s use a cooler role model than me.

How Boba Fett sells lightsabers

Let’s say Boba Fett has killed so many Jedi that he starts selling off his trophy lightsabers. There’s no discount, and they’re pretty pricey. He’s also interested in selling lightsabers to the Christian market, so he adopts a system of marketing channels similar to those of Logos . . . but in space.

So where does he start?

First, he makes a list of reasons people might want a lightsaber:

  1. It’s the supreme cutting tool.
  2. It’s an elegant weapon from a more civilized age.
  3. It’s not as clumsy or random as a blaster.
  4. It blocks and reflects blaster bolts.
  5. It makes you look really cool.

There are more benefits, of course, but this will do for now.

Second, he makes a list of the audiences that these benefits would appeal to:

  1. Youth pastors
  2. Sci-fi enthusiasts
  3. People who often cut difficult-to-cut things
  4. Sith and Empire sympathizers
  5. Jedi wannabes

Nice! A list of selling points and a long list of customers.

Now he’ll list his available marketing channels:

  1. Blogs
  2. In-app messaging
  3. Emails
  4. Social
  5. Homepage slides

Now he does a little math:

If there are five benefits and five audiences and five channels, then Boba has a lot of options when it comes to messaging. He’s not limited to just one blog post about all five benefits to all five audiences. In fact, there are more than 125 combinations here (5 benefits x 5 audiences x 5 channels).

He chooses the ones to use in his sales campaign, beginning with a general, birds-eye-view message that speaks to everyone about all the benefits, then getting targeted right after that.

The sweet lightsaber-selling plan is almost done; it’s time for a sanity check. After all, some of these messages will be more #enpointe than others:

  • Email to sci-fi lovers about the lightsaber’s elegance: great
  • Facebook post for youth pastors about looking cool: terrific
  • Homepage slide for Jedi wannabes about blocking blaster bolts: probably too targeted for such a general channel
  • Email to Empire sympathizers about its superiority to blasters: offensive

Now the galaxy’s deadliest bounty hunter is armed with months’ worth of content ideas, and he’s going to make bank.

Now, try it with your promotion.

Make a list of reasons anybody would want to participate in your promotion. Then make a list of the kinds of people you think would pay attention to those reasons. Now, what channels can you use to reach them?

I bet you can come up with at least 50 things to say.

There’s an outline of this exercise on the wiki: check it out!

Five things customers want

On CopyBlogger today Sean Jackson wrote about five things that customers want:

  1. Ease
  2. Physical comfort
  3. Mental stimulation
  4. Identity reinforcement
  5. Social acknowledgement

How does this resonate with you? What are your thoughts on how this can be applied to Logos?

For those into behavioral theory, how does this stack up against Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs?

Join the conversation!

Are you “dogfooding”?

DogfoodingDogfooding” (or “eating your own dogfood”) refers to a company’s use of its own products in order to discover usability problems, poor customer experiences, inelegance, etc.

Are you dogfooding? If not, you should be.

I’d argue that a marketing department should do more than just use its company’s products; it should also follow the company’s customer-facing communication, participate in its programs, etc.

Here are some ways you can (and should) be dogfooding:

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The Ultimate Guide to Conversion-Centered Design

The Ultimate Guide to Conversion-Centered DesignGood design is effective design. If a page fails to accomplish its goal well, it’s worthless—no matter how beautiful or easy to use it is.

Unbounce has a great free resource that deals with this subject: “The Ultimate Guide to Conversion-Centered Design.”

Here’s what it covers:

  1. Conversion Centered Design vs. User Centered Design: Find out how design is evolving
  2. The Seven Principles of Conversion Centered Design: Build from a solid foundation
  3. CTA Design & Page Placement: Best practices for the strongest CTA’s
  4. Persuasive Copywriting: Work with your prospects, not against them
  5. A/B Testing Designs for Higher Conversions: Test your designs for optimal results
  6. Designing for Mobile Conversion: Embrace the platforms your customers use
  7. Conversion-Based Page Templates: Example landing pages designed for conversion

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