The role of self-esteem in copywriting

From the desk of Razvan Rogoz
Dear friend,

You know what is the “engine” of persuasion?

It is not IQ or how many books on sales / copywriting you’ve read. It is self-esteem.

Let me explain. Persuasion involves getting someone to do something. No matter if you are writing a sales copy or if you are having an actual sales conversation, it is influencing behavior.

Now, if you don’t think you deserve that person to do that action, if you do not think yourself worthy of it, you’ve got a problem. You may have all the techniques, you may have a perfect template for persuasion but if you don’t feel like you deserve to make the sale, your entire effort will be half-heartedly at best.

I haven’t found many references to this in copywriting books / materials. There are a few people mentioning it but that’s about it. Instead, I’ve noticed this when coaching other people. Their own level of self-esteem was projected in how aggressive and direct they were in their own sales copy.

It was a projection of their own way to communicate and interact with other people in real life. Those who were shy and were having a rather bad image of themselves took a more indirect approach. Those who were more confident were a lot more direct.

Copywriting is similar to selling. Selling is similar to dating. Dating is similar to normal human interactions. Every field that involves “selling” something, no matter if it is an eBook, a car or yourself as a potential mate, carries about the same principles.

And in all of the above fields, self-esteem is 80%, technique is 20%.

Contrary to popular belief, unfortunately, not geeks are the best persuaders. If persuading was directly related to how many books about the field you read, then I would be a mind-reader by now. People who are confident enough to present and ask for the action are those who achieve success.

I think is the dating field. Let’s take the two end of the spectrum. On one side you have bad-boys who naturally attract women. On the other side you have losers who manage to shot themselves in the leg every single time. Most copywriters nowadays are the losers trying to learn everything about dating. They are faking it. They know the pick-up lines, they know the rules and in some ways, the are more sophisticated than the bad-boys.

But when the girl comes home with them, they don’t feel like they deserve this. And jumping back to the copywriting field, when they are writing copy, they don’t have the conviction that the prospect should actually buy the product.

Fortunately, self-esteem can be built. It isn’t something you can read in a book, but you can learn through experience that you deserve success and that you deserve to have your product bought by your market.

It is a bit strange but I feel like I was a better sales person when I’ve started, at least in a informal manner than now. I had tons of self-esteem. Now I am mastering or mastered the technical part of writing copy but those guts that I had when I was younger and bolder are less then they used to be.

But … there is nothing that some good habits and some upcoming lifestyle changes can’t improve :).

Best regards,
Razvan “The Copywriting Scientist”