48 hrs left…
24 hrs left…
12 hrs left… I’m about to close it!
8 hrs… you’re REALLY gonna miss out
4 hrs… I SWEAR I’m not effing around this time.
2 hrs… this might be your last chance ever!
10 min…. LAST CHANCE… do it now or you’re a terrible human.
Welcome to the final 48 hours of pretty much every launch, funnel or email marketing campaign on the internet…
Where the countdown timers work overtime.
Where online marketers get more dramatic than Nic Cage in a direct-to-Netflix disaster flick.
And where the urgency and scarcity get spread on thicker than the Nutella on a diabetic’s breakfast sandwich.
You don’t feel good sending those.
Your prospects feel worse getting’em.
And the only reason you still order the Mailchimp monkey to fire them off at your subscribers is cause you’ve been tricked into thinking they’re the best way to maximize revenue in the final hours of your email campaign.
Those last-chance cart-closing don’t-miss-out emails are a necessary evil, right?
Not so fast. Truth bomb time. In the last 48 hours of your promotion:
You’re not actually “selling urgency”…
I hear you, dear marketer.
And I’ve read Cialdini’s Influence as many times as you have.
But I’ve also spent the last half-decade engineering 7-figure product launches for world-class coaches, course creators and respectable business leaders who wouldn’t dare let their closing emails look like a K-Mart liquidation bin.
And after helping generate tens of millions of dollars in “final day” revenue for peeps like Amy Porterfield, Todd Herman, London Real and others….
Here’s what I’ve realized.
Urgency is NOT the most powerful thing you should be “pushing” in the final hours of a sales campaign.
Instead, your job is to trigger a far more subtle and powerful precursor that empowers your prospect to say “yes.”
How do you do it?
It’s a lesson I learnt when I hired my first business coach, Marc.
I was three days out of the stroke ward, dead broke from my previous 30K/year agency gig, and sitting in the middle of a doughnut shop when my soon-to-be biz coach asked:
“Here’s the investment. Are you to ready to commit to 3 months of one-to-one coaching?”
There was no “deleting” him from existence (legally).
No shoving him to a chrome tab.
No retreating to the safe confines of a funny cat meme.
My soon-to-be food stamp reality.
And a decision that had to be made.
He didn’t threaten to “close the door” or spontaneously combust if I didn’t make a decision in 15 seconds. Instead, he coached me into a decision I felt confident enough to make.
And therein lies the secret.
If you take a closer look at why 1-on-1 selling boasts a 10X close rate over your overly dramatic “the sky is falling” emails…
…you might just tap into a much more powerful, authentic and value-giving way of leading your prospects beyond their resistance, and into your checkout process.
Obviously there’s a level of responsiveness and adaptability that CAN’t be replicated at scale… no matter how ninja you get with your behavioral triggers and automations. But if you extract a few of the more powerful (and repeatable) principles at play. You can start making profitable strides in bridging the 10x gap between the 2-5% conversion rate your closing emails are probably getting you…
… and the 20-50% that the world’s top enrollment specialists get to brag about.
Ready to make this practical?
Want to see how you can take your next campaign (or an existing evergreen sequence) and coach decisiveness in the final minutes to boost profits?
Here are 3 Conversion Triggers I use to “Coach The Conversion” and Boost Sales in the Final Hours of Every Email Campaign
Conversion Trigger #1: Minimum Viable Commitment
“I only want you joining my super expensive program if you’re 110% committed”
“Tire kickers can go screw themselves”
“You have to be willing to invest 18 months, your first born child, and your vintage rock t-shirt collection”
Holy commitment batman.
Marketers have this pesky habit of either setting the commitment bar ridiculously high… or non-existently low (looking at you SaaS trials).
Problem is, if humans only took action when they were 110% certain, there’d be like 6 married people in the world – with 5 of them being pre-arranged.
When you ask for 110% commitment, you’re going against billions of years of neural wiring.
What feels safer?
“I know we just met, but let’s hitch a ride to Vegas and get married now.”
“I like where this is going. Let’s test things out. If they continue to go well, we’ll keep doing them for as long as it feels right.”
Buying your product shouldn’t feel like a “massive step” forward.
It should feel like a natural step forward, propelled by the momentum generated through your previous interactions.
Where to use Minimum Viable Commitment?
MVC feels most at home In your CTA’s and your risk reversals.
Here’s how we plugged it into the “Perfect for You If” closing email template that we used in our February launch of Copy School. Have a read:
What do you see?
First, actually, let’s talk about what you don’t see.
You don’t see “you need to drop everything in your life to make this work.” And you don’t see the copy creating absurd, unrealistic expectations.
What you DO see is a quick display of empathy around our prospect’s current mental/emotional struggle. What you DO see is a stress-free invite to give things a shot.
On a more subtle note, this allows you to take potential objections like “being unable to dive in for a few weeks” and make that INCLUSIVE in what makes a perfect buyer. When you do this, you set the bar just high enough so that your prospect feels good about their ability to clear it. Yet low enough that they can still make the jump even if they have a 10 pound bowling ball of resistance shackled to their feet.
So try this formula in one of your closing emails:
Maybe you’re [time or value objection]
Maybe you’re [unsure of being a fit objection]
Either way, you totally appreciate having [guarantee length] to put [Product] to the test to see if you can [achieve most desired outcome or overcome most crippling pain]
Oh… and a note about the so-called “tire kickers.”
Stop procrasti-shaming them.
The hyper-committed bought the second you said “go.”
If you’re down to the final 48 hours of your promotion, chances are good that all you have left are the “tire kickers.”
Don’t kick them out of the car lot.
Give them an ice pack for their swollen feet, and show them why driving is more fun than kicking a tire or two.
Conversion Trigger #2: The Quickest, Most Valuable Win (QVW)
I know your product or service can do some pretty uh-mazing things when used to its full capacity.
The problem is, for many products, the “big win” or “ultimate outcome” won’t come for weeks, months or even years.
aka…when your prospect’s changed their hairstyle, gone keto, and barely recognizes themselves in the mirror.
aka… a reality which is EXTREMELY difficult for them to project themselves into no matter how many senses you engage in your expert level “future pace”.
So how do you get around this?
How do you get your prospects excited about an imminent outcome that they can actually see themselves being an active participant in through your product?
I introduce to you, the QVW (Quickest Valuable Win)
This is a concept I developed as the love child between two brilliant thought leaders.
The first one being world-class performance coach, Todd Herman who suggests that any goal we set outside of 90 days is too far beyond our “horizon line.” In other words, the further out we try to envision a potential outcome, the blurrier it appears – the less we feel connected we feel to it – the less inclined we are to take action towards it. This has immediate implications for any marketer. Cause the further out we need to future pace an outcome for our prospects – the more “out of focus” and out of reach it will feel.
But to counteract that phenomenon, it’s not enough to simply shorten the timeline of the buyer’s experience to what they’ll get to experience in the next 90 days.
We also need to be strategic about which outcomes we choose to future pace.
To do that, we lean on the research of Stanford Professor and behavior expert BJ Fogg, whose concept of “easy wins” suggests this:
For people to be motivated to continue pursuing any action, they need to experience a set of immediate and observable wins.
Not just the low hanging fruit…
But the lowest, juiciest, most immediately satiating fruit.
The combination of both is what I call the “Quickest, Valuable Win” (QVW).
Want a few examples? Happy to oblige.
The QVW for a driver who’s run out of of gas isn’t a full tank of premium quadruple grade nitro…
… but a few drops of WETF will get them off the right shoulder of the freeway.
The QVW for a 40-year-old tech entrepreneur who’s going to the chiropractor to fix an achy back ISN’T being able to do cartwheels on her front lawn – but the quick little spinal adjustment that will allow her to sit for more than 2 hours a day to do her most important work.
Here’s how the QVW played out for our signature program, Copy School:
Copy School includes 3 FULL courses and close to 100 video lessons, with the ultimate goal of turning you into a world-class conversion copywriter with the chops to parlay your skillset into premium rates or high-paying in house gig.
But what about right now?
What about the quickest, most valuable win that you can achieve this weekend while life is still pretty much the same?
For that, we led with the library of 29+ templates, any of which could be written in about 30 mins and cover your ROI on the spot (selling your own product or writing for a client) in a single weekend.
So the question you need to answer is this:
What’s the quickest, most valuable win your prospect can gain from using a certain feature of your product?
Or… flipping that around, what’s the most painful wound you can patch up in minutes?
And while you ponder that, let’s move on to your third trigger…
Conversion Trigger 3: Binary Choice (and how my step dad became my step dad)
In 1997, when my mom and now stepfather were 3 years into their relationship, she finally gave him the world’s oldest ultimatum.
“Are you in or are you out?”
A few months later, they were trading nuptials and stomping on wine glasses, essentially putting an end to the world’s longest nurturing sequence.
Cute story, you say, but what does this have to do with bumping up my “final minute” profits?
If you’ve implemented the first 2 parts of this post, then…
… you’ve made the decision feel safe (MVC)
… you’ve made the outcome feel palpable and imminent (QVW)
… and in doing so, you’ve earned the right to get hyper binary.
Yes or no with absolutely zero in between.
Remember, most leads who fail to convert do so NOT because they’ve said “no” but because they’ve said nothing at all. Sales teams estimate that approx 60% of all lost sales are lost to “no decision.” Not to the competition. Not to the cheapest kid on the block. But to no decision whatsoever.
They abdicated their responsibility to act.
They let your cheesy countdown timer hit zero before shrugging their shoulders and saying “whoops, guess I missed it.”
The greatest culprit to your conversions isn’t a “no.” It’s the absence of a decision altogether.
So when the time is right – that is, after you’ve engaged your leads, presented the problem, positioned your offer and given them multiple chances to take you up on it… aka the last hours of your promotion or launch – you no longer need to dance around the issue. Stop dancing. Start closing with real questions that require real answers. And with real statements that require real reactions.
So how do you do it?
Nothing ninja about it.
Don’t throw more sales arguments against the wall to see what sticks.
Instead, position against indecision. Literally call it out. And give your prospect a binary choice, with clear stakes and outcomes for each divergent path.
Because examples help clear this idea up and make it more likely to stick the next time you write an email, here’s how a recent 10x Launches student executed the “binary choice” in his cart-closing-soon launch email. Take a sec to read and see what he’s doing:
Bonus Trigger: Give a damn (and don’t write until you feel like absolute sh*t)
So you know how, back in the day, salespeople were told to “smile on the phone” cause the person on the other end could supposedly “hear it.”
Ya, I used to think that was a bunch of BS too.
Until I realized that my highest converting emails were the ones in which I brought myself to feel the pain as deeply as my prospect would.
As if I was right there in the eye of the hurricane with them.
Desperate to solve the problem as if it were my own life or death situation.
Here’s what I’m getting at…
FOMO shouldn’t just be the thing you ask your prospect to feel in the final minutes before your offer or promotion expires. It should be something you feel on behalf of them when you sense their opportunity to overcome a pain or solve a problem quickly slipping away.
There’s no template or swipe file for this last one.
But if you expect your prospect to give a damn about your expiring cart…
Might not be a bad idea for you to take the lead.
Your subscribers want you do to this next
These triggers are just a few of the ways you can “coach the conversion” in the final 48 hours of any drip campaign, product launch or evergreen funnel.
If you’re feeling good about sprinkling these triggers in your “final day” emails, by all means… skip “go” and dive straight into your email software so that you can start profiting ASAP.