Hypnosis and marketing have a lot in common. Both have formulas to guide the process. Both transcend these formulas – they are useful guides but, if you follow them blindly, it leads to disaster.
The PCAT formula underlies all hypnotic change:
You start with the Problem/Parameters, so that people have what they want in mind.
Then you bypass the Critical factor – a fancy way of saying you put them in a trance.
When they are in tune with their unconscious mind, you Activate inner resources.
Finally, you Transform them by applying the resources to the change. Then you Test to make sure it stuck.
If you followed that rigidly like a script, then you’d struggle to hypnotise anyone. If you use it as a framework to build upon, then everything flows like magic.
In copywriting – whether it’s email, sales letters or social media – there’s another formula: AIDA.
The first thing is to grab their Attention.
You keep their attention by engaging their Interest.
Then you activate their Desire for whatever you’re selling.
Then you finish with a call to Action, such as ‘click here’ or ‘buy now’.
Two formulas with two different goals. Or are they? After all, they both inspire change in people. You could use either to trick people, although that leads to a world of hurt for you. Both formulas work best when you genuinely want good things for the other person.
The contexts are worlds apart but the intention is more similar than you’d think.
In fact, not only are the goals the same, but so are the formulas.
There are a few ways to get someone’s Attention, which is step one in marketing. You could write a swear word in big letters, then proceed with your offer. It doesn’t work. It attracts attention and loses it straight away. The best way to grab attention is to promise a solution to a pain in their life.
Promise a solution? Doesn’t that sound like Problem/Parameters from hypnosis?
Once you have their attention, your marketing has to be Interesting. It has to suck them in. Maybe it tells a gripping story or perhaps it describes their ideal future. And what is either of these but bypassing the Critical factor?
Marketers then fuel Desire towards an action. And aren’t desire, motivation and determination fantastic resources that hypnotists Activate?
Then there’s the call to Action – a Transformation and Test in one. Handing over money is the best test that the process worked and, once they do, the purchase changes them.
Hypnosis and marketing use the same tools to reach the same outcomes. It’s not surprising, since both are forms of applied psychology. Keep this in mind the next time you sell your services – as a hypnotist, you’re already an expert in the principles.
Of course, there’s a difference between knowing the principles and applying them. If you find yourself getting lost in the weeds of designing your own marketing, then take a breath. An easier way to get fantastic results is just below.
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