How to write copy that converts by understanding the client’s state of mind

We don’t search and purchase services in a vacuum, neither do our customers. There is a whole mental process that takes place before you pick up that tablet and swipe on the Chrome icon. That’s the client’s state of mind.

Understanding this state of mind will help you create copy that converts. When you can predict when, how, and why someone is searching for something, you can almost customize your copy to that person.

It's not enough to know who your customers are. It’s not enough to know what their problems are. 

You need to understand the lens through which the customer views their own problem. The only way of doing this is to know their state of mind when they are reading your copy.

Search marketing VS interactive marketing

Someone who finds you from a Google search is going to have a different state of mind than if they’d come to you through a Facebook ad. This is what we call search marketing versus interruption marketing.

If they're searching for an answer on Google, they're already in a state of mind to be looking for that solution.

On the other hand, if they see it on social media, it has to catch their attention in an entirely different way. This is keeping in mind most people have a tendency to skim, if not outright ignore such ads.

The client’s state of mind

Understanding the reader’s state of mind matters when it comes to connecting with your ideal client. What are they doing when they see your copy?

Are they mindlessly scrolling through their phone? Are they hunting down a solution online? Are they sitting there thinking about how awful their life is?

Why does knowing these things matter? It lets you know what you're up against when it comes to capturing their attention.

When I was at Glaser, Kennedy, we used to send out a lot of direct mail. We have to imagine that they sorted their mail directly over the recycle bin. That visual forced us to make sure the envelope captured the reader’s attention in the few precious seconds it had before going in the bin.

The same idea goes for web copy. You have to imagine that they're being bombarded from 85 different directions with information. Understanding what they're doing when they see your content, or your copy is going to help you get to the point where you can connect with them in the right way.

Has the client tried purchasing similar services before

Another thing to understand is what experience the potential client has trying to solve the problem. Have they invested in similar services and got burned before?

Someone who’s been disappointed before will have a more negative state of mind when reading what you have to say. They’ll need more convincing.

You also need to establish where they are in terms of their learning or buying journey? Are they in a position where making a purchase is the next natural step?

Understanding this will help you figure out the best way to approach them. If they're brand new, you're going to need to do a little bit more education than if there is an old hat and you can just kind of cut to the chase. 

Do they know what the problem is

Sometimes, a client’s statement of mind might be “There’s no problem here.” That’s why you have to start from scratch.

If this is the case, you really need to emphasize the problem in your copy. The best way to do this is to emphasize how your product will make their life easier. This article on features and benefits will help you understand this better.

If, on the other hand, people are searching for a solution you offer, they are already aware of the problem. They are simply looking for answers. So your copy will focus on how you can give them these answers.

Segmenting your list according to the client’s state of mind

It’s possible for you to only send mail to specific people on your list. We call this list segmenting.

Not every buddy that sees your ad is created equal. We’ve already seen you need to advertise differently to people searching on Google and those stumbling on your social media ads.

This is why you need to test and tweak your copy. 


You can’t send a doubting Thomas who needs more convincing and a raving believer the same email. Whom you send which message will depend on that client’s state of mind.

Here is an episode I did on segmenting.

So does your copy consider the client’s state of mind

If you want to see higher conversion rates, you need to start by understanding the customer. 

You need to understand who the customer is, their background, and their state of mind when reading your copy.

Book a call with me today for professional help with your copy.

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