I recently read a great article about writing magnetic blog post headlines, filled with great advice, much of which I’ve recommended in my previous experience and consulting work. I’m not going to rewrite any of it so just go and read it when you’re done here.
However, one thing I noticed right away in this article was the author’s use of number abbreviations and I felt a bit underwhelmed from the data. Here’s what it said:
The data included over 30K visits and 6K social shares.
When I saw these numbers, it made me a bit more than subconsciously think “well that isn’t all that much” which is wrong. 30,000 visits and 6,000 social shares IS a lot and definitely enough for a good sample amount to learn from.
The problem was it just didn’t LOOK like that much because of the abbreviations.
We as people are actually quite easy to manipulate with numbers. Psychological pricing is a perfect example of this, and it actually works. I even catch it working on myself even though I know to be aware of it and always try to round up when looking at pricing.
For pricing something, marketers want to make it look like it costs less – not necessarily cheap – for the value you’re getting.
So when you’re trying to promote something where you are presenting how much someone is getting or how big something is, using the opposite method can be helpful.
Here are some fictional examples:
Here’s a few examples I just made up comparing larger looking numbers to abbreviated ones – consider which ones feel larger to you:
- Join 1k Newsletter Subscribers vs Join 1,033 Newsletter Subscribers
- Free 1 Month Trial vs Free 30 Day Trial
- 90 Day Money Back Guarantee vs 3 Month Money Back Guarantee
Use the Opposite When Appropriate
There are times you may not want to make something sound larger, so consider what your objective is and use the opposite approach when appropriate.
As an example, let’s say you wanted to sell a course in something that you want to sound short and easier to accomplish, unless you are trying to sell the value (in days/time) of the length of the course. In that case you might want to say something like 1 Week to Success vs 7 Days to Success which of course makes it sound less because 1 is, well, less than 7.
Use Your Knowledge Responsibly!
Please use these techniques responsibly. I’ve had a saying for a while; Marketers are Liars. Please don’t be a liar. You can make something sound appealing without misleading or deceiving and build success based on truth and honesty.