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6 Tips for Understanding Words that Trigger Behavior

By John Alexander


This Have you ever wondered about writing styles for your Web page that literally trigger behavior and compel visitors to respond?

I know there has been a real increase in the interest of keyword research recently since I was speaking about it at the Toronto SES Conference. Keyword forensics is the term I coined after I wrote an e-book about the methodology I use to research user behavior. This style of research as forensics investigator put it so nicely is nearly like conducting a forensics investigation to discover the hidden evidence that so many people miss. 

With this methodology, you quickly begin to notice specific keyword phrase clusters that are very telling about the conditions in a searchers life. The reason you want to dig into this is so you can understand what initiates the search and what the searcher is looking for and then you can find the best windows of opportunity for optimizing a keyword phrase for top organic ranking search visibility. 

Okay, you can read some of my other articles on keyword forensics here.

Next though, I want to talk about Words that help trigger behavior on your Web page, so that once you attracting the ideal audience, you can compel them to respond. This does not have to be a lesson in sales letters because your objectives can be varied and for instance maybe you are just trying to get more people reading your newsletter or perhaps some other objective. But this is the first step, always know what the objective is for the page you are working on.

1. Consider your writing style.

You do not just want to use brochure style Web copy or anything that is written in muti-syllable words. I like to compare the best writing style, similar to writing for voice like the broadcasters do. Many times you will notice that broadcasters write in a pretty direct, friendly dialog where they focus on speaking to you.

Words like you, you can, you will enjoy, yours, your own, your way are speaking directly to the listener, or in the case of Web copy, are read by the reader. Words you should typically avoid are self focused words such as we, we are, ours, our guarantee, we are the best, we have experiences etc.

Always write your compelling copy so that it focuses on them the reader, not yourself.

2. You want to develop a specific voice for your copy.

If your personality shines through, it can be beneficial to help develop a following or a list of subscribers. Regardless of your voice, people want to hear from someone who writes their thoughts in a helpful or useful and sincere way. Perhaps you can try and fake sincerely, (I don't recommend it) but it's far better to just be yourself and your readers can get to know you through your writing.

3. Try avoid using hyped up superlatives.

By this I mean far too many people want to talk about why they are the best there is in the business or how their guarantee is the greatest or whatever. It's far more effective to try and illustrate how you are different than your competitors than to say you are better. The reason is that all you are doing is blowing your own horn.
However, if you say you are different, then let your illustrations and dialog verify just how different and unique that you are. If you do this correctly, the reader will be able to see for themselves that you really are different.

4. What are trigger words and how are they important.

Understand that depending on your service or business, you will want to become aware of triggers that compel response. Notice that I said response, not reaction. Here is a simple definition of a trigger word.

Primarily trigger words are actually sales triggers
For example: 

  • Does your product or service 
  • Save people money?
  • Increase their profits
  • Reduce their stress level some how
  • Improve their appearance
  • Improve their results
  • Streamline a process or save them time
  • Give them some measurable advantage
  • Improves their confidence
  • Help them remember something better
  • Give them proof of skills or some type of certification
  • Teach them something new
  • Improve their Study habits

This is just a partial list to keep in mind when you writing compelling copy for your Web page. 
These are the types of triggers that help people with making a decision.

5. Make sure you are using friendly graphics.

Remember that most people relate well to the human face and especially around expressive eyes. If you use graphics, try and choose images where people are happy, smiling and making eye contact. Avoid photos of people looking discouraged or with their eyes looking downward symbolic of discouragement. 

6. Remember that using good trigger words does not just apply to your Web copy.

If you are describing the benefits of a product there is sometimes very good ways to include them in your Title tag so that a benefit or a trigger will appear right in the search results. The description Meta tag is an excellent place to include trigger or call to action as it may also appear right within the search results too.

Check out these upcoming local SEO Workshops in any of these local communities.

About John Alexander
John Alexander is Director of Training at Search Engine Workshops offering live, SEO Workshops with his globally located community network of Search Engine Workshop Associates. John has
taught SEO skills to people from 87 different countries world wide. John is also Director of Search Engine Academy with localized Search Engine Academy training centers where the Complete SEO Mastery Workshop and 6 Month Mentoring program is taught locally to business owners and individuals in communities across North America and Internationally in Asia and Australia.

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