June 03 Writing Prompt

More copywriting? More copywriting.

Today’s main blog post helped define the term copywriting and is a crash course into the introduction of the craft. This week on the daily writing prompts, we have looked at ads and the AIDA approach.

But there is another common tactic as well.

This one is called PAS.

Most copywriter’s have heard (or even studied) Dan Kennedy. He is one of the highest paid copywriters of all time, so there may be something there.

Anyway, PAS, like AIDA, is an acronym. It stands for Problem. Aggravate. Solution.

This common funnel technique is used more and more and may be the front runner to overtaking the century old AIDA formula.

Let’s take a look at the writing prompt and then I will get into the PAS formula more.


June 03

Look at the ad below, then rewrite is using a more aggressive PAS formula.

Establishment Wigs

When dealing with the PAS formula, it is actually quite simple. That is what makes it so powerful, too. The audience doesn’t realize that their brain is being handled like a puppet, all they know (if you do your job right) is that they MUST have your product.

Let’s look closer at PAS

P is for Problem. You want to identify the reader’s problem right up front. Dive in like you are old friends. This works best when you can identify the problem without calling it out as such. In the Establishment Wig ad, for example, they say “No need to cut your hair for those occasions when shorter hair is a must…”

The obvious problem here is that long haired people may need short hair for a moment, but not for as long as it will take to grow their hair back.

A is for aggravate. You want to lay into the problem here. Really get in there and turn that knife. The goal isn’t to make the reader feel bad for having this problem. So, you still want to identify and sympathize. Using the whole “I’ve been there too, friend.”

The ad above doesn’t really aggravate at all, so you can take the opportunity to really show the problem in all it’s horrible-ness. If your reader has this problem, you want to use this space to make them wish for, and desire, a solution.

S is for solution. Ta-Da! Lucky they found you! Not only are you their friend, so much so that you can empathize and sympathize with their current problem, but you know exactly how bad it is. Maybe even more than they do! But you have already traveled that road.

You have come back with the quick, easy solution, and are willing to present it to them. For a fee, of course.

Now It’s Your Turn

Now you get to try your hand at it. Take the ad and use the PAS formula to sell some wigs. Use the same concepts the ad uses (why it is needed). Instead of making the reader take action, though, you want to make them long for your product. So much so they are willing to clip that coupon and mail it back to you for all of your information.

If you are feeling confident (or want suggestions), post your PAS results in the comment section and we can all go over it to make it even stronger.

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