This is the fifth part in the series on how to overcome a saturated niche. You may read parts one through four here.
In this part, you will discover why you shouldn’t even mention a benefit in the headline. You need to call-out your customers’ names by using this trick called identification.
If you’re in the most competitive stage of advertising:
Your market no longer believes in your advertising, and therefore no longer wishes to be aware of your product.
The emphasis shifts from the promise [benefit] and the mechanism [invention] which accomplishes it [the goal/result], to identification with the prospect himself. You are dealing here with the problem of bringing your prospect into your ad—not through desire—but through identification.
Identification is the secret to this state of market. It is when you should no longer to use a benefit in your headline–and instead you call your audience out by their characteristics (that relate to your product). Your target audience has seen the benefit before so you need to give them a unique reason to read your ad.
According to the famous copywriter, Eugene Schwartz here’s a few headlines that would fit in this category:
Why Men Crack (See full ad.)
Why Haven’t TV Owners Been Told These Facts? – This ad identifies TV owners, and makes them curious about what facts they should know without mentioning the benefit. The benefit is slowly explained later in the ad.
You’ll start noticing how many famous ads have used this technique. An ad can only run so long on a benefit, but using identification, the ad can run for years. In fact this ad ran for over 40 years:
Do You Make These Mistakes in English? – This ad identifies people that speak English and are curious if they are making any grammatical mistakes. An identifier plus curiosity does very well in this stage.
Read more about curiosity in headlines in this article: Are You Forgetting This Most Important Step in Writing a Headline?
Above (the last two headlines that I wrote), could have the identifiers (bold terms) replaced. You could test dozens of headlines by changing their identifiers instantly. For example:
Why Haven’t PC Users Been Told These Facts? This ad could then go on to explain why name brand computer software is overpriced and doesn’t get the job done, but this software will…. You can see how there really is no limitation when using identifiers.
Do You Make These Mistakes in Your Ad Copy?
That’s almost it. The last part will be my conclusion and explain the two tweaks you need to use if you’re getting a low ad CTR or lower readership.
Part 6 (final stage): How to apply these principles.