Your offer can be the difference between making a ton of sales and making nothing. Literally.

Your offer—or, more specifically, how compelling it is—will determine whether or not your target audience will gobble up what you are selling.

Before all else, though, there needs to be a starving crowd in your marketplace that desperately wants what you're offering.

If there is no starving crowd that wants your offer, then you will make no money: No matter how good your product. No matter how many hours you slaved away creating it. No matter how talented the direct response marketers on your team.

So let's say that there is a starving crowd in your marketplace. You need three things to craft a compelling offer that will make your target audience care:

  1. You need a solution that helps them solve a problem.
  2. You need to know their deepest desire.
  3. You need an irresistible guarantee that removes any buyer risk and instills confidence in your offer.

What is your target audience's biggest problem?

Creating a compelling offer begins with understanding what your target audience's biggest problem is. Without that, you'll never be able to create an offer that gets their attention. And if you are unable to get the attention of your prospects, then you'll never make sales.

You need to create an offer that resonates with your target audience. Anything less, and you'll be ignored.

If you aren't sure of what your target audience's biggest problem is, some good-old-fashioned research is going to come in handy.

If you have an email list, then surveys are a great way to start. Create a survey and send it out to your list.

What if you don't have a list? Then get creative.

  • Look for forums online.
  • Go on Amazon and read negative reviews people leave on books in your niche.
  • Read magazines in your industry.
  • Get out into the real world and speak  to people. Speak to your target audience.

Get creative and don't limit your options: This step is too important.

What is your target audience's deepest desire?

Next, you'll need to tap into the emotions of your target audience so they'll associate their deepest desire with your product or service.

When buying, we are all quite irrational. We like to think we are rational, but we are anything but.

Instead, we make buying decisions based on emotional reasons and then justify them with logical reasons.

So... you need to target emotions.

Specifically, you need to target the deepest desire of your target audience if you want to get a lot of leads and sales from your offer.

Let's look at an example.

You have two cars: A Hyundai valued at $20K and a Mercedes valued at $80K. Now, we know that both of these cars do the same thing: They both get you from point A to point B. And both perform comparatively similarly. So why do people go and buy a Mercedes? Emotional benefits, that's why. They do it because driving a Mercedes means your peers and society will perceive you as being successful. They do it for social approval.

That's the sort of thing to keep in mind when coming up with a compelling offer for your target audience.

Look at the features and benefits of your product or service. Do the old-fashioned features and benefits column.

Then you will see the emotional benefits your product or service provides to your target audience. You will see what they really want.

An irresistible guarantee can make all the difference to your sales

You are probably familiar with the unique selling proposition (USP) that helped Domino's Pizza explode onto the market and make millions of dollars: You get fresh, hot pizza delivered to your door in 30 minutes or less—or it's free.

Overall, it's a brilliant USP. But the offer component that makes it so irresistible is the guarantee that it will be at your door in 30 minutes or less or you get it for free. That kind of guarantee is hard to refuse.

Let's paint a scenario to demonstrate why it's so powerful.

It's a Friday night and you want a pizza. You're pretty hungry, and you've got barely any food. You know a pizza shop 15 minutes' walk from your place. So it will take you 15 minutes to walk there and you'll probably be waiting 15-20 minutes just for the pizza to be cooked. So you're looking at around 35-40 minutes, and you've got to go and get it yourself.

Now, let's say you know another pizza shop like Domino's will deliver a pizza within 30 minutes or you get it free. You can just stay at home and wait for it. Which one of the two options are you more likely to choose?

Most people will pick the second choice.

Including a powerful guarantee with your offer can make all the difference in the eyes of the buyer.

If you have any problems coming up with a guarantee, then check out Derek Halpern's comprehensive list.

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Three Steps to Creating an Offer That Gets Leads and Sales

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image of Leigh Hankin

Leigh Hankin is a daring direct response copywriter (Boldly Crafted Words) for small businesses and entrepreneurs.

Twitter: @boldcraftedword

LinkedIn: Leigh Hankin