If you’ve even flirted with the study of copywriting, you’ll already know about “reversing objections” – the fine art of making the buyer feel better about things that make them resistant to purchasing your product.
It’s a pretty straightforward process that leads to higher sales, and it works like this:
- Think of a potential objection / concern
- Think of how you can relieve that concern
- Mention it in your copy before the reader thinks of it
When you do this, the reader’s concern is relieved before they even think of it, which is a powerful event.
Why objection reversal is so powerful
When you can reverse and objection before the reader explicitly thinks it, you’re doing them a huge favor.
We all have worries and concerns, and they can really put us on edge once they come to mind. With an effective reversal, the brain can relax, and pay better attention to what’s going on.
Here’s an example. Let’s say I borrowed your car on the weekend. And on Saturday night I sent you this text:
“Can you call me ASAP? I need to talk to you about the car.”
That message could go in a lot of directions. You might think I crashed your car, or that something else happened to it that might be bad news. You’d be on edge, braced for a potentially unpleasant event.
But if I sent you this text instead:
“Can you call me ASAP? I need to talk to you about the car. (Don’t worry – nothing’s wrong, it’s just a technical question)”
Now you could relax. You could call me without cringing. You could actually be in a good mood.
Reversing objections is like that. It helps readers staying in a good mood while reading your copy.
Why some objection reversals get defensive
One challenge that many people have when trying to reverse objections is they go a bit overboard.
They assume that the reader’s objection is intense, which makes them defensive.
This is a big one with pricing. When a seller worries that people will say “That’s too expensive”, they try and reverse the objection with a strong statement.
Here’s one I saw recently in an FAQ, paraphrased so that I’m not copying someone verbatim:
Q: Why should I pay $500 for an online course?
A: Because it’s worth it. When you think about all the value this product will bring to your business, $500 shouldn’t be considered that much of an investment. And this course is worth far more than the current price, so you’re getting a great deal.
Defensiveness happens because of insecurity. (Ask me how I know!)
When we’re afraid that someone is not going to buy from us, we can go on a convincing campaign, coming up with all the reasons why they should not have a particular objection.
The problem with that is it sounds like we have an agenda, and we’re trying to justify something. We’re trying to convince them, sell them on an idea, change their mind.
To the reader, that gives the impression that we don’t have confidence in our product – and maybe even ourselves.
That’s not good for sales. :)
How to tell if your copy is defensive
An easy way to review your copy to root out defensiveness is to read it over and see where you, personally, feel a little bit afraid that someone won’t buy, or someone won’t think your product is good enough.
Defensiveness happens when you feel like you might be attacked, which isn’t surprising when it comes to buyer objections.
We often conjure a mental image of someone verbalizing the objection in an angry or cynical voice, and we want to tell them they’re wrong. We want to convince them.
Unfortunately, that doesn’t work. You can’t argue and change someone’s mind.
So as you review your copy, look for anything that doesn’t sound confident, or has the “No, but really you should buy this!” vibe to it.
If you feel like you have to convince someone, or you’re afraid they won’t buy, you’re probably writing defensive copy.
How to turn defensive copy into confident copy
Defensive copy happens when you think “No, but they need to know / believe this!!!”.
That’s all about you saying what you want them to hear. It’s about proving yourself.
To reverse this, use empathy.
Put yourself in the buyer’s shoes, and think of what they need to hear to make their concern go away, or at least be softened.
Picture them having the concern, and then ask yourself what a person needs to hear to feel better about that particular thing.
Whatever that person needs to hear, it’s probably going to be a lot calmer and a lot more relaxed than something defensive.
Reversing objections confidently is about reassurance.
Instead of convincing someone that they shouldn’t have an objection, consider what they would need to see in order for them to disassemble that objection on their own.
In other words, “Show, don’t tell.”
If their objection is about price, for example, don’t say your product is worth it, or make a big stink about how it’s a great value. You can certainly mention those things, but don’t draw attention to it.
Instead, show them indicators that will signal reassuring things about your price.
- If your product is lower-priced, you can use words like “affordable” throughout your copy.
- If you have payment plans, you can draw attention to that, too.
- If you can demonstrate how money savings in another area, that’s helpful, too.
Each of these indicators soothes the objection, a little bit here, and a little bit there, until it’s reversed.
You can also connect price to outcomes as well.
On the sales page for Easy-Peasy Sales Pages, I have this in my PS:
P.S. – Most people only have to make 1 or 2 sales of their product to make this program pay for itself. Consider how many more sales you can make with a better sales page, and decide if you'd like to give this course a try.
Remember “Show, don’t tell”, and you can remove defensiveness in your copy.
Here’s one last tip for getting the defensiveness out of your copy:
Assume the objection is small.
Don’t frame it as a big objection like, “This program is going to be too much work!”, because then you’ll be prone to convincing and defending.
You’ll be all, “No it’s not! Because because because!”
If you frame it as something smaller like, “I hope this won’t be too much work…”, then you’ll be in a better state of mind for empathy.
And in that state of mind, you’ll be more prepared to think of all the little things people need to hear in order to be reassured and relax.
And reassured, relaxed people are more likely to buy.
When you make the objection smaller in your mind, you can relax, too.
And a more relaxed you will write much better copy.