The Placebo Effect of Strong Marketing Materials

by Michelle Salater on September 5, 2012

Rumor has it that boxed wine is getting better and better these days. Even so, most of us would rather show up at a dinner party with a bottle than a box. Why? Because things like packaging still matter—a lot, in some cases.

While that may seem like a quirk of our collective perception, it’s also really good news for online marketers, because it means that we can have a significant impact on our clients’ perception of our goods and services by improving the way we present them.

To boost the enjoyment your clients gain from using your products and services (without actually changing what you deliver), take the time to implement these experience-improving “placebos.”

  • Say “thank you.” Thank-you pages and follow-up emails are standard in online marketing, but that doesn’t mean they have to be boring or formulaic. Create unique thank-you pages that speak to your clients’ wants and needs to reinforce their conviction that they just made a smart purchasing decision.
  • Invest in top quality web design. Poorly designed web pages prompt clients to question whether they’re making a wise decision investing in a product or service. Reassure your prospects by building web pages that are the highest quality you can afford.
  • Invest in good copywriting. Grammatical errors reek of Nigerian princes seeking short-term loans. Clean writing and a crisp voice, on the other hand, demonstrate your legitimacy and help your prospects get to know, like, and trust you through your voice.
  • Increase value (and draw attention to it!). Are you offering freebies? Providing a price break? Giving your prospects priority notification about an offer? Remind them about the value of your offerings in the text of your marketing materials.
  • Add a personal touch. Hand-written thank-you notes, personal follow-up emails, and other one-of-a-kind touches are irreplaceable as far as making clients feel valued. Reach out when the situation merits an extra contact.

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