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How To Use 3 Triggers That Convert Leads To Sales

Bloggers and online marketers all over the world are searching for new and more effective ways of getting more opt-ins to their email lists, getting subscribers to open their emails, and getting more people to buy stuff from them.

If you have been struggling with any kind of conversions in your own business, then it’s time to consider the part that human psychology plays in helping you increase your conversion rates.

In this article, we are going to look at some of the most common psychological triggers that help to increase various conversion rates.

We will also explore some examples and delve into why they work so well.

A Glance Into The Psyche of Humans (from a marketing standpoint)

In the marketing landscape, there are a lot of people who are focused on various aspects of the psychology of humans.

They look at the subject almost as if people are stimulus-response creatures that they can manipulate into doing anything they want.

But in truth, it’s never that simple.


Because human beings are human beings. In addition to the stimulus-response element of their human psyche, they also have a spiritual and creative aspect as well.

This part is not so easy to place in a box.

This means that there is always going to be variability when it comes to what tactics actually work in marketing.


There are also some common themes – what you might call ‘triggers’.

By trigger, we mean something you do that causes predictable actions to occur, just as when you pull the trigger on a firearm, it causes it to go ‘boom’.

So, even though there is a (heck of a) lot of variability to human psychology, there are still some common triggers that have been proven to drive people into taking certain actions better than others.

We call these ‘conversion triggers’.

Being able to make sense of conversion triggers will help you in moving people into action. After all, in marketing, that’s the name of the game.

Conversion Triggers Will Help You To Be Able To Do The Following Things:
  • Get people to buy your products or services
  • Convince them to opt into your list of email subscribers
  • Increase your email open rates
  • Boost your click-through rates
  • Get more comments on your blog posts
  • Get more engagement on social media
  • And whatever else you want

Understanding Conversion Triggers

When discussing conversion triggers, it’s not difficult to see why the conversation paints humans as being simple stimulus-response creatures.

This is because most marketers are focusing only on the perfect combination of words and the right colors to magically hypnotize their audience into pulling out their wallet and entering their digits.

That seems a little manipulative, and it is not the right mindset at all if you want to succeed in online marketing.

When leveraged correctly, conversion triggers can transform your entire marketing strategy. You see, our entire society as humans is built on convincing other humans to do certain things.

This means that marketing and conversion are a part of our every day lives. And as with everything else, it all comes down to intention. Conversion triggers work no matter what your intention is.

If you’re working to convince other people to do something that is in their best interests, then that is great.

But if you’re working to make them do something that is not in their best interests, then that is definitely bad, but conversion triggers will still work, which is why some people consider them to be manipulative tactics.

But, if you have been following this blog, you know that at, we are big advocates of providing value to your audience first.

The money will always, and I mean ALWAYS follow when you base your business on providing value.

If you put money first and use these conversion triggers to convince your audience to do something that isn’t in their best interests, it not only comes dangerously close to being a scam but sooner or later, it’s all just going to blow up in your face.

A great marketing strategy is conversion-focused, and it is designed to not only attract the people that your product or service is right for but also to repel those that won’t get any value from your offer.

This is ethical marketing:

The willingness to tell a potential customer if what you are selling is not the right product/service for them. This is looking out for their best interests over yours.

Why Conversion Triggers Work

When used in your marketing, conversion triggers work because they run parallel to our natural human tendencies.

It’s as simple as that.

They are such a natural part of our psyche that we often use them even without thinking about it.

That being said, let’s take a look at a few of the most important conversion triggers that you can use to enhance the results from your marketing efforts.

3 Psychological Triggers to Help You Convert Leads to Sales

Conversion Trigger #1 – Avoiding Pain And Seeking Pleasure

This is more than a mere trigger, it goes to the heart of basic human nature where the impulse to survive resides.

At the core of each and every human being (once you peel away the onion layers), there is a basic survival command that we all obey. It’s true for human efforts to live better, more fulfilling lives.

In fact, this is true of ALL life. Even a tree finds a way to grow (and thrive) out of a rock in the ground that barely has any water.

When talking about survival, it’s not all black and white.

Between the low-level base necessities or what keeps your heart beating, and the highest level of survival where you are happy and fulfilled, it’s a gradient scale that has many shades of gray.

The degrees of survival on this scale can best be measured by pain and pleasure.

As humans, we’re ‘wired’ to do our best to prevent pain and to seek pleasure. This includes physical, mental, and spiritual pain/pleasure.

To apply this to our marketing efforts, we want to make prospects see our offer as moving them away from pain and toward pleasure.

The definition of pain or pleasure is something that is obviously going to be different for various markets, but it’s basically the transformation that your business offers to deliver.

It’s the ‘before/after’ scenario whereby in the before state, your customer has a more pain/less pleasure, and in the after state, they have more pleasure/less pain.

You must understand the before/after transformation that you are offering:
  • In some markets (for instance the health market) pain may refer to actual pain and people may be looking to avoid literal pain.
  • In other markets like the adult business, the pleasure that people are seeking may be literal.
  • In markets such as self-development, the pain may be more mental like stress or lack of fulfillment.
  • In the dating market, the pain might be emotional like problems with finding a relationship.

As you can see from these few examples, there are different forms of pain in various markets.

Once you understand the transformation that you’re delivering, then you can create your offer around it and trigger much better conversion rates from your ideal audience.

Conversion Trigger #2 – Novelty And Newness

A company that understands the immense power of ‘new’ is Apple.

Each year they release a newer model of their iPhone.

While they change something interesting every now and then, most of the time it’s just a small upgrade which doesn’t really justify upgrading, and yet there are always tons of people queuing to upgrade their iPhones.

One of the ways that Apple draws those customers is through the promise of pleasure (there’s also their status and community, but we will get to that another time).

People love NEW.

This is why a bottle of shampoo can get a significant increase in sales just by changing something as simple as the design of the bottle. It’s also why software companies continually issue newer versions of their products.

This conversion trigger is simple and easy to apply to your marketing strategy. Simply roll out new things for your customers to buy.

Fresh offers, new versions, bundle packages, or entirely new products – it all works.

Give your offer a fresh new feeling and then let the novelty and newness trigger do the rest. This trigger is typically coupled with one of the other triggers that we’re going to discuss, but that is usually how all this works.

Conversion Trigger #3 – Explain ‘Why’

Yet another of our distinctly human tendencies is the need to find some meaning in everything. Whenever we’re presented with new information, we want to file that information relative to other stuff that we already know.

This helps us to evaluate both the meaning and importance of that information.

In marketing, prospects often invent their own meaning for stuff if you don’t provide it. Human beings are great at making things up to fit any new data into their current paradigm.

But if you’re trying to sell them something, you’re probably not going to benefit from the things that they make up.

This is why giving them the ‘why’ is such an important conversion trigger. It helps them to connect the dots, however trivial they may seem.

For instance, if you’re running a discount or sale, explain why. Giving away a free consultation? Tell them why.

Of course, everyone knows the reason is to make money, but aside from that, it could be something obvious like offering a Black Friday Deal during Black Friday week.

You could also help your customers connect the dots just by showing them the reason why what you’re offering matters. Explain to them why your offer is better than another and why they should act immediately as opposed to later.

The Bottom Line on Psychological Triggers

These are just three of the many psychological triggers that can help you transform leads to sales and boost your business growth. There are many others that we will discuss in future posts.

And while they are not the only things that go into copywriting or marketing, they are very important when it comes to orchestrating the best sales message to get you your desired results.

And we’re not just talking about making sales here, we’re also talking about various other forms of conversion where you get someone to do something that you want whether it’s:
  • Opening an email
  • Clicking on a link
  • Posting on social media
  • Watching videos
  • Commenting on your blog post
  • Or sharing your social media post

These conversion triggers will work for all of it.

So, going back to what our goal is with content marketing:

To drive our audience to take action, you can see why these conversion triggers are vital to your overall marketing plan.

It’s important that you have a firm understanding of how the human psyche works. You need to know what makes people tick, and why they do the things they do.

Always keep in mind that under all the mechanics, the websites, and the tools, you’re dealing with real live people. Once you understand what motivates them and learn to work with it, you’ll always win the online marketing game.

In Conclusion

Use these cognitive triggers to help you increase the conversions that you are getting on your offers.

But remember, this does not work if your offer isn’t based on providing your audience with value. The offer is what matters the most.

Once you have that down, using the triggers will work like magic.

We have posts on our blog on how to create offers that convert. Put this all together and you’ll soon be a pro at learning how to find out what people want, crafting your offers, and finding the best ways of presenting them and getting the best conversion rates.

Feel free to post your comment below.  An email address is required but it will not be shared with anyone, put on any list, or used for any kind of marketing, just to alert you if there are any replies. Thanks and happy hunting!


Updated: Originally published September 21st 2018

This Post Has 10 Comments

  1. Jody

    Great post you have created here! Its a message every person can use in all areas of their lives to help convince others to take a specific action.

    As you mentioned your suggestions should only be used with the intent to help others.

    Avoiding pain and seeking pleasure, novelty and newness and explaining why are areas I see where humans can be convinced to take specific actions if you can offer solutions that will address their concerns.

    1. Steven

      If you keep this in mind while creating your site content you should do well. Also, like you said, use only for good, never evil!!!

      Thanks for the comment Jody!

  2. Amjad

    Hello Steven and thank you for the great article!

    Honestly, I knew already about the Pain/Pleasure and the Why & Benefits triggers.

    But the “New” Trigger is really new to me. I never though of it as a word that would significantly affect the conversion ratio.

    But with your example about Apple, I now understand how effective this trigger is. I have always wondered why people keep buying Apple Products although there are better products from Sony for example. Now, it’s clear.

    I should try to use this trigger more in my online marketing business and see how it goes.

    Thanks again!

    1. Steven

      Novelty is a powerful motivator for humans. We love shiny new toys!

      Thanks for the comment Amjad!

  3. Mariah

    What an excellent article! I am pretty new in the online marketing scene and one thing that I am working on getting over is the prospect of manipulating people to do what I want. That has always had a bad connotation to me, and I hate being sold something. So now that I am trying to promote products, I feel a little guilty sometimes. But it’s like you said, we are promoting a value, something that we believe will actually make someone’s life better.

    That’s why I like that you made sure to emphasize that you should use these triggers to convince people to do something that is in thier best interests. That’s what I want to do! I hope that I can leverage the 3 psychological triggers to help people and add value to thier lives.

    1. Steven

      You are not alone… Many people that get into marketing, at first, feel like they are being dishonest somehow.

      I think this comes from being a victim of dishonest marketers in the past. Don’t let past experiences with dishonest marketers reflect badly in your mind.

      Be honest, with your users, and yourself. Only promote quality products and services. Do this and you will sleep well at night and make a good living at the same time.

      Here’s an article about selling that might help as well:

      How To Perfect The Art Of Selling Without Selling

      Thanks for the comment Mariah!

  4. Kenny

    Hi and thanks for a great piece of content that I hope many site visitors read as it will truly help them to make some money. Many new affiliate marketers get very downhearted when they get lots of traffic coming in but no conversions to sales. And then they quit or don’t put in as much effort as they did in the beginning. I hope you create more very helpful tips to assist others in achieving their goals. Thanks, Kenny 

    1. Steven

      Many never make it to the stage you describe. Low conversions is actually easy to fix, getting the traffic is the difficult part!

      If you hang in there long enough and follow the simple rules to get traffic, you can then work on conversions, which is usually just tweeking content and fixing site structure.

      I’m glad you found the post useful and thanks for the comment Kenny!

  5. cpascal

    I didn’t know that putting an old product into new packaging can boost sales. I’ve always wondered why companies change the packaging of the same product so that it looks so different from what people are used to. However, the new packaging often tends to jump out at you too much. Although it gets attention, it can also be quite annoyning to walk into a store or see a commercial and to find so many things with an overwhelming appearance. 

    1. Steven

      You’re right. The practice of repackaging products can, and has been, taken too far. It does work if done tactfully though. People love novelty!

      Thanks for the comment Cpascal!

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