Dear Kids,

       Through reader feedback, I know that my explanation of the AIDA formula is not clear enough. Your grandfather has already wrote about this, but here is a shorter version.

       AIDA is an acronym that helps you remember the four phases of ALL marketing.

       It stands for…


I –interest


       Attention- The first step of all salesmanship/marketing is to get people’s attention. Examples would include monkies dressed like cowboys at car dealerships, AD headlines, knock on the door etc.

       It is any tactic, trick words or basically anything to get attention. You can’t do anything to sell people if you don’t have their attention.

       For AD writing it is the Headline and the little headline in the upper left hand corner called the lead in headline.

       Interest- Once you have a prospect’s attention you must get him or her interested in what you have to say, or what you want to offer, or what you wish to show them.

       This could be a provocative statement that would interest your clients like, “Five people from Massillon, Ohio just made $5,000 for an hour’s work.” That statement would be particularly interesting to people who live in Massillon, OH and were curious how they could earn so much.

       Unlike with the headline you already have the prospect’s attention and it is time to keep that attention and turn it into the next phase, desire. So the interest phase is really a transition phase.


       Examples of the interest phase would include stories about the product’s discovery, reciting news events, or an explanation of why you sent them a bag of dirt attached to the top of a letter.

       Desire – Once a prospect is interested in what you are talking about it is time to get his greed glands going and make him really desire the product or service.

       This can be accomplished by showing the prospect how wonderful his life will be if he uses the product or how bad it could get if he doesn’t. We could show the benefits of a service or demonstrate a product. These and other selling points are what causes the desire in a prospect’s heart.

       The last phase of all marketing is action. This is where you call upon the prospect to buy now. Some marketers call this phase the “call to action.”

vTo give them a sense of urgency you can tell them the sale is ending soon and the price will be higher if they wait or that there are only a few left or offer a bonus for those that act now.

       Later I will break down my ad into these components but this is true of all good salesmanship.

       Take a home sale as an example.

       The kid on the corner spinning a cardboard arrow will get a prospect’s attention. Assuming our prospect is looking for a house, he will then turns towards the house to drive by it.

       The curb appeal is what interests him and that is exactly why the realtor had it all fixed up.

       Okay now our prospect is sort of interested but he isn’t sold on the house. He sees there are a few people meandering about and decides to take a peek inside.

       As he speaks to the realtor she tells him the house has a wine cellar and comes with a home theater system. She tells him all of the house’s selling points making him really desire the house. This of course is the desire phase.

       Now he desires the house, but he wants to see what else is available and bring over his wife and if she likes it maybe then they will then show it to a friend who knows more about houses and on an on.

       So it is time for the action phase.

       The realtor is an old pro and she tells our prospect two other people are looking at the house and one is making an offer this afternoon. She says the owner needs to move in a week and she has been instructed to take the first offer over 250k. This really puts the pressure on the prospect to buy now or lose out on the deal of a lifetime.

       I hope this explanation is more clear. Later, I will use my own ad to illustrate this once more.



Click Here If You Want
To Be On My Newsletter
Announcement List

Copyright 2005 Gary C. Halbert.  All Rights Reserved.