How emotion motivates


This article is very short and sweet.

Ask any commercial copywriter and they’ll tell you the best way to get people to open their wallets and buy is by evoking emotion through your content.

So, in answer to the title of this blog, yes, emotion does motivate people to buy.

However, I’m not talking about feelings.

That’s where a lot of people get confused. Usually, when talking about emotions, you immediately think of feelings: being happy, sad, angry, upset etc.

But when it comes to triggering a response to make someone buy, you’re looking to trigger emotions that cause motivation.

How to kick start a reader’s motivation

The idea is to get your reader to want something and act on that want.

That means:

  • They want something through positive desire – e.g. they desire the latest smartphone, a luxury holiday, a good outcome (such as weight loss) etc.
  • They want to avoid something that’s deemed low value – e.g. they want to avoid paying too much for their utilities, they want to help eliminate poverty, they want to avoid a stigma etc.
  • They want to criticise or eliminate something – e.g. they want to get rid of vermin, they want to stop terrorists etc.

Once you’ve decided which motivation you want to evoke, all you have to do is create a story around it to get your readers to take the action you want them to take.

To do that, you have to make it personal, which means writing in the second person so you’re addressing your reader directly.

Changing your mindset in this way and thinking of emotional writing in terms of motivation should help you decide how to craft your content.