5 Ways to Use a Deadline to Super-charge Response
Adding a deadline to your offer can make or break a deal. Why? It gives your customer an ultimatum, "Act now or forever lose out."
If you aren't using deadlines online and offline, you should be. The fear of loss pushes a wishy-washy fence-sitter over the edge of indecision creating clicks, calls and traffic to your website.
Deadlines work whether they are delivered by direct mail, email or mobile media. In fact, tests show they almost guarantee a lift in response because they create urgency.
Here are six tips for super-charging your response using deadlines:
1. Give it a name
Call it a "Black Friday," "Cyber Monday" or "24-Hour Sale." Name it "an Early Bird Discount" or "Daily Deal" like the email Dean & Deluca's sends me. When I see the words "Daily Deal," I immediately know I'd better open, read and respond to it NOW. Tomorrow is too late.
Giving a deadline a name makes it intangible and concrete.
2. Get specific
Specificity is convincing, and it builds credibility. Don't say "limited time only!" without attaching a specific end date, or you'll lose credibility. Specificity also pinpoints the reason for urgency and generates action. Here are some examples of specifics that make people sit up and take notice:
- Postmark deadline: Midnight, December 31, 2011
- The FIRST FAST 50 to click or call get a Bonus FREE Mystery Gift (reg. $49.99)
- Act now before this limited edition of 500 hand-painted widgets sells out
3. Grab 'em
Grab your reader's attention with phrases like these:
-24 hours only
-last hours ends in 3 hours
-the clock is ticking
-this weekend only
The more urgency there is in your message, the more likely it is that a fence-sitter will respond.