Goodbye Cruel World! (A Lesson In Fear-Based Marketing)

This Saturday… on May 21, 2011… the world will end.

It’s also going to end October AND December 2011.

(Funny… I didn’t realize the world could end more than once)

Oh wait… I forgot about these…

  • The financial currency of the United States is also collapsing.
  • We’re about to enter into a nuclear holocaust with [insert any middle eastern country here].
  • We’re about to enter a “new age” where food will be scarce and we’ll need to live off the land for the rest of our lives
  • Bin Laden didn’t really die in the recent attack – it’s a conspiracy! He really died in 2001 (even if this is true, does it really matter?

If you’re alive today, you’ve heard all these things.

You’ve also probably heard a million other fear mongering “facts” being shoved into your head every day of your life too.

The funny thing is – I bet YOU have used them in your marketing. Especially if you’re in the financial market where there’s a new threat to the local, national and global economy popping up every other day.

If so, let me tell you why you’ve most likely made a mistake, and how to easily fix it.

Should You Use Fear Tactics In Marketing?

Let’s face it.

Fear is a POWERFUL emotion.

So powerful that thousands of suckers around the world have literally put their life savings into betting on the assumption that on May 21st, the world will end.

I’m not kidding.

As a side note, do you know there have been something like 242 different dates for the end of the world? Seems to me we’re still doing ok…

But most people underestimate the power of fear.

Let me explain.

You see… fear is so powerful that if it consumes your mind TOO much… it actually works in reverse. What I mean is that if you become too fear-filled, you’ll do everything in your power to deny what you just read. You’ll make it your MISSION to prove that person wrong.

… and in terms of marketing … you (or your prospects)… won’t buy.

Here’s an example.

In the bullets above you see that I listed “the collapse of the U.S. dollar” as one of them.

I’ve researched this area and can see it becoming a fact. However, I’m not fearful enough to risk my financial future on it. What I’m doing is preparing for that scenario in various ways, but not letting it stop me from what I’m doing.

On the other hand, there are millions of Americans out there right now who violently oppose any mention of the dollar collapsing.


Because they’re so afraid of it happening, they’re FROZEN in fear.

They’ll never buy any courses showing how to get through it. Nor will they hire a financial expert. Or start stocking up with gold and silver. Or take their Forex investments out of the dollar and into other currencies.

So How Do You Properly Created Fear Based Marketing?

First of all, you need to understand your customer.

If you’re selling a knitting course to 70 year old ladies, you probably don’t want to have a headline talking about how those little old ladies are going to wither away and die a miserable mess if they don’t buy your course.

But if you just discovered research proving that they’ve been betrayed… or lied to… that’s a perfect entrance for fear.

But see, I’m a positive kind of guy.

I’m the kind of person who uncovers the silver lining in any bad event. Because in 99% of cases, their IS a silver lining and if you spend a few minutes looking for it, not only will you feel better – you’ll also propel your life further.

And that’s exactly what you want to do for your prospect.

You want to hit them fast ‘n hard with a 1-2 judo chop to the throat, grab their eyeballs and pull em straight into your copy, and show them why things are about to get a whole lot worse.

… but here comes the key.

WHILE you’re telling them how bad things are, be sure they don’t fall into the FROZEN stage. You do this by adding in a few reminders and reassurances that everything will be OK… as long as they keep reading and discover how you can help them fix the situation.

See how easy that is?

So here’s your homework.

Go through and read over the marketing pieces you’re creating.


1) Ramp up the fear by adding more proof

2) Give the reader re-assurances that everything will be GREAT if they continue reading and buy your product/service.

One Final Request For Fear Based Marketing

Whatever you do, be HONEST.

Don’t scare the crap out of your prospects unless the final solution will BENEFIT them. My philosophy in marketing is to ethically sell them as hard as possible, as long as the value exchange is worth it for them and gives them at least 10x the value.

There’s enough fear based marketing these days that is complete BS. For every one “good” message we hear… there are about 30 “fear” messages bombaring us everyday.

So please, only use fear based marketing (and conspiracy theories) if it’s necessary.

It works, but it also brings us down emotionally/mentally and creates most of the problems we have in the world today.

About the Author Jeremy Reeves

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