Your ad layout and the first few paragraphs of your ad must create the buying environment most conducive to the sale of your product or service. The first thing you do in selling is to set up the selling environment. Whether it be a private room in a gallery or a car dealer’s showroom, you configure the physical environment to be your selling environment.

Next, you have to get the attention of the prospect. That certainly makes sense and is related to the headline of a print ad. Once you have the prospect’s attention, the next step is to introduce yourself and say something that will keep the attention of the prospect. This is similar to the sub-headline and the photos and captions.

Then comes the sales pitch or the copy in a print ad. During this activity, the seller has two thoughts in mind.

  • The first is that the buyer must like and develop confidence in the seller. The buyer must believe that the seller knows his product.
  • Secondly, the seller must somehow relate the product to the buyer and the buyer’s needs. That’s clear. But the buyer and the seller must literally vibrate together. There must be a harmony struck in both the buyer and seller or the persuasive sales message won’t come through.

First, you’ve got to get the prospective reader to start saying yes. Second, you’ve got to make statements that are both honest and believable.

  • Let’s cite an example. A car salesman says, “Nice day, Mr. Jones.” Mr. Jones then answers, “Yes.” (It is a nice day, the statement is truthful and the customer answers in the affirmative. I  see, Mr. Jones, that you keep your car clean.”
  • Every element in an advertisement must cause that slippery slide effect. The headline must be so powerful and compelling that you must read the subheadline, and the subheadline must be so powerful that you are compelled to read the first sentence, and the first sentence must be so easy to read and so compelling that you must read the next sentence and so on, straight through the entire copy to the end.