Selling With Shock and Awe

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Ever see those infomercials where someone buys a $400,000 house for $629.18?

Or, the one where person after person drops mindblowing amounts of weight, going from a size 48 to a size 4 in 4 months (and mysteriously losing all their body hair, too)?

It’s called social proof, most often shared in the form of testimonials and case-studies where “other people” share their stories about the impact of your product or service. And, it’s massively effective at persuading someone who’s on the fence to buy what you’re selling. One particular form of testimonial, though, is damn near magical as a tool to get people stampeding to be first in line to buy your stuff.

And, that’s the “Shock & Awe” testimonial.

You know, the one with results that are so far beyond what the average person conceives as possible, it just makes you stop and say, “Earl, you need to drive me to the Quickie mart and buy me one a them, stat!” We’re used to seeing Shock & Awe testimonials in infomercials and, more and more, internet marketing launches. But, truth is, they are massively effective in even the most local brick and mortar business.

Perfect example. Last week, my wife signed up for a 5 week drawing class called Drawing With The Right Side of Your Brain. It was made famous in Dan Pink’s A Whole New Mind. But, being in a bestselling book wasn’t what made the 5-day, $1,500 art class so popular.

It was their use of Shock & Awe testimonials in the form of before and after drawings.

Here’s a sample of self-portraits from their website. The ones on the left are from the first day of class. The ones on the right are from day 5:




Now that’s some serious hand-drawn shock and awe.

If you have even the slightest interest in learning to draw, it’s hard to look at these before and after pictures and not feel driven to sign up for the next class. And, yes, they are real. The difference between my wife’s before and after was equally stunning.

Which begs the question…are you sitting on any Shock & Awe social proof for your business or career?

Got any stunning accomplishments, massive sales, mind blowing achievement you could dig up and share? If so, you may have discovered a powerful new tool to not only drive sales, but strongly differentiate yourself from your competitors.

WARNING: Before you run out post your Shock & Awe social proof, you should know that the FTC regulates testimonials closely and, if your Shock & Awe is not typical of the results your other clients have experienced or can reasonably expect to experience, you may very well have to disclose that fact as well. Astonishingly, the art profile before and afters I shared above are fairly typical of the results attained in 5 short days in the Drawing From The Right Side of Your Brain Workshops.

So, ready to roll out the Shock & Awe?

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1 response

One response to “Selling With Shock and Awe”

  1. Jon says:

    Fantastic post, very relevant to what I am developing for my own site… social proof is a great marketing tool!

    Jon – Create Unique Memories