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Traditional Scarcity Tactics
First, you need to understand that traditional scarcity tactics do still work… to a point. However they can actually be detrimental to future sales, especially when it comes to digital goods.
Let’s take a look at a few traditional scarcity tactics so you can get an idea of why they don’t work as well for digital goods.
Traditional Tactic #1 Limited Quantities
Limited quantities can work very well for some products. For example, high-end cars, limited edition collectibles, antiques, etc. But there’s a reason for that. These goods are either in extremely high demand, creating natural scarcity, or they are very rare, also creating natural scarcity.
Some companies create artificial scarcity by creating only a limited number of a particular product. For example, rare baseball cards that are only found in one out of several hundred (or thousand) packs of cards. Another example is when a company like Bradford Exchanges creates a limited run of a particular collectible, and you know only so many thousand will ever be made.
People understand that some items should be limited. If something takes a lot of craftsmanship or time to create, or if something is created specifically to be rare and collectible, not everyone should be able to get their hands on these items. Otherwise, they wouldn’t be special.
However, because digital goods are something that can theoretically be made available in unlimited quantities with little to no extra expense, people do not understand the need for scarcity. If you try telling people you only have a limited number of eBooks available, they will know it isn’t true, because you can offer as many as you want.
Limited quantities can well without harming your reputation in the eyes of some potential customers when you have a new technique that very few people know about that you can say you only want a few people knowing about because you don’t want the technique to lose its effectiveness. Even then, they know people will learn about it eventually.
Limited quantities could also work if you have a PLR product, because you don’t want to create too much competition for your buyers.
Other than that, most people won’t understand why you’d have limited quantities, and you could risk upsetting people who might have otherwise ended up buying many products from you over the years.
If you try offering limited quantities of digital goods, you’re really shooting yourself in the foot. You’re missing out on a large number of potential sales just for the sake of getting a few select people to take quick action. Does that make sense?
Traditional Tactic #2 Limited Discount
Limited time discounts have been around almost as long as stores have existed. Most coupons have an expiration date. The sales flyers that come in the mail typically state that prices are only good for the current week or month, and sometimes include a few items on deep discount for 1-3 days only.
The trouble is that once the sale is over, sales typically drop significantly. People who missed the sale price will often be too upset that they missed the sale price to buy at regular price, or they will wait for the product to potentially go on sale again.
Limited time discounts can work very well if combined with another scarcity tactic, but on its own this tactic doesn’t produce ongoing results.
Traditional Tactic #3 Limited Bonuses
Bonuses definitely help boost sales, especially if the bonuses match the theme of the product and have significant value. (In other words, if people can’t get them easily elsewhere.)
Of course, as with limited time discounts, the tactic only works for a while. A limited bonus is only offered for a limited time or in limited quantities, so its use is greatly minimized.
Traditional Tactic #4 Delays
One tactic that can work well with physical products is to create artificial scarcity with regards to production. Game console manufacturers are known for doing this (or at least suspected of it) because when new consoles are released there is usually a very limited quantity available, causing a mad rush to grab them whenever they are found, and driving prices sky high on the secondary market.
Of course, this gets the new console a large amount of media attention. News outlets report on the shortages, the prices on sites like eBay and Craigslist, the long lines at stores, and even fights people get into while trying to obtain one. This makes the console even more in-demand, because people want what they cannot have.
The game console makers claim they can’t produce enough to keep up with demand, and most people believe this. However, with as many times as this has happened with various consoles, wouldn’t you think that a major console maker like PlayStation or Xbox would produce a very large quantity of these consoles and have them ready in anticipation of high demand?
Of course, this shows quite clearly why such a tactic wouldn’t work with digital products. These products don’t need to be manufactured after the initial creation. They don’t need to be shipped. They don’t need to be stocked. Thus, you can’t create artificial or natural scarcity like this for digital products.
The only time this might work would be if you’re selling services like writing, coaching, etc. Since you have a limited number of hours you can work each day, people could naturally experience delays if they don’t order while you have time slots available.
But for digital products like eBooks and downloadable goods… it just doesn’t work.
Amplifying Scarcity with the Fear Factor
Now it’s time to really delve into exactly what you can do to put these scarcity tactics – these fear factors – into use in your business.
But we’re not going to focus on just those typical scarcity tactics you read about in the previous chapter. Instead, you’re going to learn how to add some natural scarcity tactics into your repertoire as well, amplifying the effect tremendously!
Fear Factor #1 Focus on Benefits
If you’ve read any kind of books or articles on copywriting, you already know you should be focusing on benefits rather than features in your marketing materials.
In case you don’t know, here’s the difference:
• Features are the actually features of the product. For a downloadable course, this might be things like the number of pages in an eBook, the number of videos available, the video format, the length of the videos, etc.
• Benefits are the ways the product can actually help you. For example, it might help you get rid of unsightly acne. The primary benefits of that would be that you look better, feel better, gain confidence and might even find it easier to find a date.
Too many people focus on features rather than benefits. While you need to include the features for those who want to know, most people just want to know the answer to one basic question: “What’s in it for me?”
So how can you use benefits to create an urgency to buy your product? It’s simple if you think about it…
Make people afraid they won’t ever get the results they need unless they buy your product!
The fear that they will continue to live with whatever problem they are currently experiencing will drive them to buy, especially if you combine it with another scarcity tactic like a limited discount.
So make sure you reiterate the benefits of the product right before you call-to-action button. Tell them how the product will make them feel. Tell them what it will do for them.Other Details
- 1 Ebook (PDF, DOC), 25 Pages
- 7 Part Autoresponder Email Messages (TXT)
- 1 Squeeze Page (HTML, PSD)
- File Size: 30,761 KB