This is a really nice concept I’ve stumbled upon recently. Where by “nice” I actually mean that it’s one of the douchebag marketing techniques I’ve been talking about in some of my latest posts.
The method itself is not that new, it’s been in use for years now, almost exclusively in internet marketing (ain’t that a mystery?), but I didn’t have a name for it until today.
Distraction selling/marketing is something done mainly in video marketing - where marketers use videos to convince people to buy or to take some other action.
The whole idea is to distract the visitor by tackling some common objections, only to take advantage of those objections later on in the video.
This definition probably doesn’t sound very understandable so let me give you some specific examples.
Saying that it’s not a get-rich-quick scheme
Probably the simplest trick in the book. Marketers using it take the first 2 or 3 minutes of their videos to tell you something like this:
“Hey, this isn’t just yet another of those get-rich-quick schemes that so many shady marketers try to sell these days. This is a legitimate method that will make you money.”
But then the marketer goes on to present their product exactly like a get-rich-quick scheme just 10 minutes later into the video.
They even go as far as naming their thing “the magic solution” or promise that it can “automate” the whole process (cheers, Mike Filsaime, or Mike Fil.saime, which is the name you currently use in your emails).
In short, if you want to be a douchebag marketer … say that you’re not offering a get-rich-quick scheme, but then say that you actually do (but make sure to place the second message further down the video).
Saying that no magic results are guaranteed
… but then, of course, saying that the thing on offer will teach the viewer how to pay their credit cards, car loans, even mortgage, which is, in fact, a disguised results guarantee.
The funny thing is that some sales messages say those two things in one video segment. Literally, something like this:
“Hey, I can’t guarantee any outstanding results from this, it all depends on your dedication, but imagine how great it would feel to be able to pay your credit cards, car loans, and mortgage with no effort.”
Just … come on.
Saying there are no push-button solutions in existence
This is a great example of distraction in practice. In the first segment, the marketer finds a common doubt in the visitor’s mind and addresses it by agreeing with the rational point of view.
The doubt is that there are no push-button solutions that work. Here’s an example:
“We all know that there’s no such thing as a push-button solution. People who offer them only want to trick you into buying their products.”
Which is a statement everyone can agree with. So the visitor begins to trust the marketer – they think that “he’s one of the good guys.”
Then, 10-15 minutes later into the video, all that the marketer has to do is to start describing their product exactly like it’s the greatest push-button solution of them all.
This is actually quite similar to the situation with get-rich-quick schemes. But this one’s even easier to pull off because getting rich overnight raises much more objections.
Mentioning the things “others want you to believe in”
The easiest way of finding a common language with the visitor is to do it by finding a common enemy.
And in internet marketing there’s no better way of applying this than by saying something about “them” and the shady things “they” want you to believe in.
This isn’t a separate element, per se. It can be used along with the stuff about get-rich-quick schemes and push-button solutions.
The idea is to say something like:
“Countless marketers want you to believe in all these push-button solutions, which clearly is only a way of convincing you to buy their crap.”
Again, at this point, the marketer is building some trust. The whole trick is to later on convince the visitor that they should indeed believe in what the marketer is saying. A kind of “hey other marketers lie, but I’m telling the truth.”
Of course, the douchebag element in this is that the marketer tries to convince you to believe essentially the same stuff that they warned you about just a while ago…
Saying that the solution is not going to work for everyone
This distraction is all about saying something simple like:
“Hey, this solution is certainly not meant for everybody.”
But then, the marketer goes on to describe the person who is likely to get results. Now the best part, the description of this ideal persona actually fits everyone.
Something like this:
“If you want to finally make it on the internet, build a real business, make profits, and help people, but without having to work 12 hours a day then this product is perfect for you.”
The above practically describes the niche of “everybody.”
Let’s end the list with two crown jewels in the distraction marketing handbook:
1. Promise to share some specific information
… but then share nothing useful at all.
Here’s how it plays out. Have you ever seen a video where the marketer promises to tell you some great secret, only to find out that they really share nothing except an invitation to join their list (or something) at the and of the video?
In order to make the video seem attractive, the marketer promises some specific piece of info, like: “The 7 Killers of Online Business.”
But then, even if they do mention those “7 killers” the advice will be designed in a way that the visitor can’t take any specific action apart from subscribing to the marketer’s thing. In essence, the things they say sound attractive, but they are incomplete, i.e. they’re garbage.
Virtually, it’s like me telling you this: “Hey, do you know why you’re not winning the lottery? Because you’re betting on the wrong numbers.”
2. Distract from the main purpose in general
For instance, the way we get caught up in these videos is that the marketer promises some specific outcome – the result we’ll get after watching the video. But then, throughout the video, the message shifts from “wanting to teach us something” to “wanting to sell us something.”
It’s an outstanding distraction practice, and some great douchebag marketers can really pull it off.
From the viewer’s perspective, it seems like you no longer know why you’ve wanted to watch the video in the first place. All you know now is that you want to buy the thing on offer.
To be honest, that’s basically why those so-called informational videos are so long. It’s difficult to distract the viewer from the main purpose in less than 10 minutes, but in 30 it’s quite doable.
So … there you have it! Distraction marketing in a nutshell!
Of course, don’t use these techniques unless you want to become a douchebag marketer. I’m publishing this only as an informational resource so you can notice what’s going on when someone tries to use distraction marketing on you.
Anyway, what’s your opinion? Do you see a lot of distraction marketing going on?