23 Oct 3 Mind Tricks to Get People to Buy Your Books Online
After weeks, months, and years of slaving over a blank page, you finally completed the one book to rule them all. Before you can bathe in the accolades of having written such a masterpiece, you must first get people to buy it. Whether you have signed on with a commercial publisher or decided to go the self-publishing route, marketing your book to potential buyers is an essential part of the publishing process. Here are three psychological techniques you can use to convince people to buy your book.
Learn About Your Audience
Before you can properly persuade potential patrons to purchase your book, you must thoroughly understand who your readers are. Using psychological techniques requires knowing what motivates your readers, their goals and fears, their likes and dislikes, and other factors that influence their buying decisions.
It’s not necessary to get to know the nitty gritty about specific individuals who you want to buy your book. Instead, you should develop a detailed profile of your ideal client. In the business world, this is known as defining your target market.
Your target market is the people who are most likely to be attracted to your work. For example, if you’re selling a book about losing weight, your target market are those people who want to shed a few pounds and are looking for a way to achieve that goal.
The best way to determine and understand your target market is to create a profile of your ideal reader. For instance, if your weight loss method involves cutting carbs, then one trait your ideal customer will have is the ability and willingness to consume higher amounts of fat and protein. This rules out people who have medical conditions that require them to minimize the amount of protein they consume (e.g. those with kidney disease).
The more traits you can brainstorm and uncover about your ideal customer, the easier it will be to use the following psychological tactics to get them to purchase your book.
Tap Into Their Emotions
It’s a common misconception that people make purchases based on logic and reason. If that were the case, luxury homes and vehicles probably would not exist, since it’s more logical to purchase a reliable affordable vehicle with good gas mileage than it is to lay down $200,000 for a Lamborghini.
The truth is, people make purchases based on their emotions. They see something that makes them all tingly inside and then they come up with the rationale to purchase it. If you’re able to hit your target audience’s hot buttons, you increase the chance they will put your book in their shopping carts.
Knowing your target audience will help you determine what emotions are driving their purchases. The trick then is to design your sales copy and book blurb to hit those pain or pleasure points and position your book as something that can help them fulfill their unspoken needs.
For example, a person may say he or she wants to lose weight for health reasons, but what the individual really wants is to feel desirable or to stop being teased by others because of excess weight. If you position your book as a tool to help them achieve these emotional objectives, the person is more likely to give your book a chance.
Help Them Rationalize the Purchase
As noted before, people buy with their emotions first, but they justify their decisions by rationalizing the purchase. A person may fall in love with your book, but if the individual can’t justify spending money on it, then he or she is not going to buy it.
While price is sometimes a factor in the decision, it’s not the only one. When justifying the purchase, people will also look at:
- Whether the purchase is a good value
- How much time they must invest in reading the book
- The convenience of making the purchase
- Whether they have room in their homes or electronic devices for the new purchase
- Whether there is a potential for loss at any point (e.g. no returns policy)
Look for ways to help the reader justify the purchase. For instance, you could offer a money-back guarantee to assuage their fears of wasting money on a product they don’t like or use. Offering your book as a physical and digital product lets readers purchase the book in a way they’re comfortable with. The more rationalizations you can provide, the higher the chance they’ll make the purchase.
Use Peer Pressure Responsibly
As much as people talk about individuality, humans are social animals and take cues from the people in their social circles more often than they probably would admit. When someone is uncertain about a matter, most of the time, the person looks to his or her peers for clues about what to do.
This is why book reviews and testimonials are so important. The reader doesn’t know anything about your book, so the person will naturally seek out the opinions of others to get a sense of whether or not to make the purchase and act according to the type of feedback provided.
While you want the book reviews to be positive, don’t sweat it if you get the occasional negative review. Not only can a bad review make your other reviews seem more legit, negative feedback can stoke a sort of perverse curiosity in the reader. The person may still buy the book just to see if it’s really as “bad” as the reviewer says.
Another psychosocial trick you can use is to align your book with something positive the person is already aware of. For instance, if you write fiction, you could associate your book with another writer the person may already read (e.g. if you like Stephen King, then you’ll love this book). This taps into the psychological foundation already laid by other writers and marketers and makes it easier for you to sell the reader on your work by associating it with something the person already enjoys or has positive feelings about.
Book marketing is challenging, but with some ingenuity and persistence, you can drive books sales to achieve the level of success you desire.