How To Increase Sales By Using “Isolation”

Increase sales joyfully

The Magic Way to Increase Sales

45 minutes, 40 strangers, 1 product.

Over 50% sales. Extraordinary!

How did I increase sales?


I remember flying to Pittsburgh in the year 2004.

It was a 7am presentation in front of about 40 people I didn’t know. And they didn’t know me, either. When I finished the presentation at 7:45, I asked the crowd a simple question.


“How many of you would like to buy this product?”


Over 50% of the hands in the room went up. Which, by the way, wasn’t the most interesting part. The most interesting part was that I hadn’t told them much about the product, or the price, or the delivery. So why were so many people in the room willing to buy the product?

The answer lies in a discussion I had early in my career with an amazing salesman.

I was new to sales and marketing back in the early 2000s. And I ran into this multi-millionaire called Brian Tracy. His advice on sales was the best definition of sales I’ve ever heard. He said: “Sales is a transfer of enthusiasm from one person to another.”


So that’s what was happening—enthusiasm was being transferred!


Indeed, I’d made a good presentation. Yes, the content was very interesting and useful. But it’s the enthusiasm that caused people to brush aside the rest of the details and make a decision to buy the product. It’s the enthusiasm that allowed me to increase sales.

However, it’s one thing to say “be enthusiastic” and quite another to do it.


How do you create enthusiasm?


The answer lies in a concept called “isolation”. It doesn’t matter if you are selling offline or online, you can’t be enthusiastic if you’re bogged down with seven hundred features and benefits. So you isolate just one.

Just like Steve Jobs did when he presented the MacBook Air. Instead of simply rattling off every feature, the drama was centered on one thing and one thing alone: the fact that the MacBook Air was so thin, it could fit in an envelope.

The BBC presenter, David Attenborough, creates this same moment of enthusiasm.

There he is, standing in the middle of the forest, surrounded by thousands of trees, bushes, insects chattering endlessly and what does he do? He drops to his knees and shows you a flower. His eyes light up as he goes into detail about that flower, while ignoring everything else around him. What he’s doing is zapping that enthusiasm right into you, but he does so by creating isolation first—and then getting his message across.


Enthusiasm doesn’t mean you have to be loud or boisterous


The best sales people aren’t those who get in your face. Enthusiasm means you feel very strongly about that one feature of the product. So much so, that you’re willing to drive home that point in detail.

If you’re excited enough, and exciting enough, the audience feels this surge of excitement. Yes, your product has a ton of features, but they want that one feature, and they’re willing to raise their hands for it.


This method works for both online and offline sales.

Offline, you drive home the point in person by demonstrating or showing a particular feature. Online, you pick one specific feature, and drive it home using more pictures and more explanations, thus isolating the importance.


Sales is a transfer of enthusiasm from one person to another


To feel that enthusiasm you need to isolate one feature of the product that’s extremely exciting to you.

You then transfer this enthusiasm to your audience.

And then, like the Pittsburgh audience, watch as their eyes light up and their hands go up.

Yup, just like that.

The question is: are you excited enough to try it? How would you use isolation to increase sales? Tell me in the comments below.


About the author:

Sean D’Souza is a writer, marketing guru and expert on sales psychology. To read more articles by Sean, and get a very useful free report on “Why Headlines Fail”, go to

Image: Enthusiastic young man courtesy of

Why Working With Your Brain Is The Key To Avoiding Writer’s Block


How to Work with Your Brain to Avoid Writer’s Block

Olive oil
Garlic, Cinnamon, Oregano, Minced lamb, Tomato purée, Parsley
And red wine


Writing an article is like making a yummy dish called moussaka


Making the moussaka takes a bit of work. The first port of call is, of course, the ingredients. You have to make that all-important trip to the supermarket, the butcher and the veggie store to get the ingredients.

Then there’s the prep work, the cooking and finally, the serving.

In short, four major steps.


Article writing is a lot like making a dish


There’s the outlining, the research, the writing and then finally the editing. And the best way to get frustrated and head right into Writer’s Block is to do all four steps at once.

If you stop to think about it, it’s crazy. Just doing the outline will get you a bit tired. Then maybe it’s time for a bit of research, but even a little can get you pooped. By the time you get down to writing the article, you’re all wrung out. Who the heck is thinking of editing or formatting right now? All you want to do is get out of your misery.


But this misery is pretty easy to avoid if you understand your brain


If you notice, the brain works just fine in batches. It functions nicely when handling one thing at a time.

But try and do all the stages at one go, and you get physically and mentally tired. Then you start making mistakes and of course the entire article often falls apart. You can’t think, you’re too tired to act, and now you believe that you’re not a writer after all.


All you need is a bit of planning


I know that you think you don’t have the time to break up a single article into several stages, but that’s the most efficient way to write. Here’s what to do:

- You outline.

- Then you do your research, if needed.

- Then, possibly the next morning, you write.

- Finally, let it sit for a while, then edit and tidy it up.

Cooking, writing, dancing—any activity that requires brain power also requires the brain to power up and power down; to have rest periods so that the enthusiasm and energy come flooding back.

The gap between different stages gives you time so you can think and ideas can percolate, giving your article a better chance of being a work of art instead of it becoming a chore.


But can’t you get it all out in one go?


Yes you can. There are times when you’re all fired up and turn out that dish from start to finish. But in most situations, you want to work with your brain, and work in stages.

Stages allow for much better, less frustrating articles.

And yes, yummy moussaka.

Bon appétit.

Or should we say, “kali orexi!”?

Do you write in stages and does it help beat writer’s block? Share in the comments below!


About the author:

Sean D’Souza is a writer, marketing guru and expert on sales psychology. To read more articles by Sean, and get a very useful free report on “Why Headlines Fail”, go to

Image: Cutting vegetables courtesy of


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How To Correctly Use Emotion To Create Drama And Set The Pace

Would You Like to Use Emotion Correctly?

Would You Like to Use Emotion Correctly?

I raced madly.

I raced madly, but I didn’t care.

I raced madly, but I was too excited.

I raced madly, but something was gnawing inside of me. Something was about to go wrong.

I raced madly, but I couldn’t shake the depression.


What’s the difference between the first line and all the others?


Yes, the first line is shorter. But it also lacks emotion.

And while facts give the um, facts, they don’t tell us how you feel.

In any given situation, ten people getting the same bowl of soup will respond in ten incredibly different ways.

I saw the bowl of soup and my heart sank.

I saw the bowl of soup and it flooded me with happy childhood memories.

I saw the bowl of soup and I was surprised how hungry I felt.

I saw the bowl of soup, but a feeling of hesitancy crept into my being.

I saw the bowl of soup, and immediately felt overwhelmed.


You get it, don’t you?


The bowl of soup isn’t what the brain is searching for in the story.

The brain is searching for the expression on your face. This search is embedded in who we are as human beings.

When my niece Keira (she’s three, almost four years old) hears her mother shout at her, she almost always scans her mother’s face instantly.

She’s trying to read her mother’s face to see: 

Is she annoyed?

Is she angry?

Is she frustrated?

Is she furious?

Is she about to go bananas in a second?


The reader of your article needs to know what Keira can see.

They need to know not just what the event was all about, but why it was important.

And how it was important.

And the biggest clue comes from the emotion that follows the statement. Or the emotion that precedes the statement.


A few examples…


When the emotion follows the statement:

Example 1: There she was, the girl I so cared for. And yet, there was a sense of disgust.

Example 2: There she was, the girl I so cared for, and my heart lit up like the fourth of July.

Example 3: There she was, the girl I so cared for. And then she was gone. I was frantic.


Or you can create the scene using emotion as a precursor:

Example 1: Little did I know that I would be disgusted. After all, this was the girl I cared for very deeply.

Example 2: I wasn’t expecting the sudden burst of happiness on this gloomy day. But as I rounded the corner, there she was—the girl I cared for very deeply.

Example 3: There was nothing to suggest that I’d be frantic in a second. Because right in front of me was the girl I cared for.


The emotion sets the scene.


The event itself is just an event. What makes it burst into flame is the emotion that surges through our system as a result of experiencing that event.

And then of course, we can choose to bring in the emotion earlier, or let in hang a bit behind and then whiplash the event with its suddenness.


But you can overdo the emotion.


Emotions provide the roller coaster that lead the reader through your writing. And especially so, when you’re telling a story.

Sadness and depression tend to linger longer, so it’s okay to keep the emotions going for a little while.

Other emotions like surprise and fear can be fleeting; speeding through faster than a bullet.

But you can’t keep going on and on, line after line, with emotions.

The way to use emotion correctly is to bring it in and let the reader feel the happiness, sadness, disgust etc.

And then move on.


You set the pace.


And you set it with emotions.

Because ten people can drink soup.

And every one of those folks feel totally differently about the soup.

A soup is a soup is a soup.

Until you add a dash of emotion. Maybe two dashes. You decide :)


How have you used emotion successfully to create drama and set the pace? Do share in the comments!


About the author:

Sean D’Souza is a writer, marketing guru and expert on sales psychology. To read more articles by Sean, and get a very useful free report on “Why Headlines Fail”, go to

Image: Excited Man courtesy of

The 6 Most Important Lessons Of Marketing

Do You Apply The 6 Most Important Lessons of Marketing?

Do You Apply The 6 Most Important Lessons of Marketing?

1) Follow up.
2) Follow up.
3) Follow up.
4) Follow up.
5) Follow up.
6) Follow up.


How do I know this to be true?


Because recently we launched a book on Membership Sites. As is the norm, we give the best price to our members at 5000bc. We also let them know about the product much in advance. They read it in announcements, on the forum etc.

So what price would your members choose to buy the product at? The lowest possible price or a higher price?


You’d be surprised at what you find…


The logical mind would say that people buy the product at the lowest possible price. But that’s not true. Yes, many members do pick it up at the member’s price. But at least 15% or more pick up the product/service/workshop at a higher price.


Now why would they do that?


We can’t say. And neither can you. Maybe they weren’t convinced. Maybe they didn’t read the earlier emails. Maybe they were on vacation.

The maybes don’t matter.

What does matter is that a reasonable number of buyers (and we’re still talking members here) do buy at a higher price, and at a later date. Which means that if we didn’t follow up, those sales may not have happened.

And this little insight shows you that if your closest, tightest band of followers aren’t paying that much attention after being reminded over and over again, how will the rest of your audience react?


Yup, you got it right!


The rest of the audience is more skeptical, more distant and so logically, they would react much more slowly. The less connected your audience is to you, the more they’d hesitate to buy your product. So if you don’t follow up, you miss the chance of getting a sale from this audience.

But that’s not all.


When you miss out on a sale, you don’t just miss out on one sale.


I recently bought a series on “How to draw trees, How to draw skies” etc. I bought that product about three weeks ago. Yesterday, I bought some more products from the same instructor. What are the chances that I’d buy the second series if I had not bought the first?

It doesn’t take much to guess that you don’t get to second base, unless you slide to first.  And yet, the first would have never got my interest if it wasn’t for the consistent follow-up.


Which is fine in theory, but how do you follow up without being a pest?



Well, it depends. There are several ways of following up. The most effective way is to be direct and to the point. That means an email that says: “Announcing the book on XYZ…” is going to get far more response than anything else you can send to your list.

The single announcement that is pure sales and nothing else will get a far greater open rate than any other email. Yes, it’s sales-y, but customers want to buy from you. So if you have something to sell, they want to see it.


But continuously being direct and to the point isn’t the best of ideas.


If you keep pummeling someone with sales offers, they’ll soon tire of you and stop paying attention, no matter how great your offer. You can, however, follow up with other methods. E.g. a book excerpt. Or a few client testimonials embedded in your weekly newsletter. Or an interview in which you talk about your book.

As you can tell, there are many ways to follow up for a single product.

You don’t want to do them all at once. The mistake that rookies make is that they send out the excerpt, the testimonials, the interview etc. – all in one email. So now, what do you have left to send to your list when you want to follow up? Not a lot, huh?

Keeping the follow-up sequence ready is pretty darned critical. And yes, make sure you create this sequence well in advance.


In advance?


Yes, in advance. When you first sell a product/service, all your cylinders are firing. You may be exhausted from having put together the product, the sales sequence and so on, but that’s the time when you’re most focused on your product.

If you create the entire sequence — at least six follow-up steps, you’ll get those follow-up steps out the door on time. If you don’t, you’ll get distracted with taking a break or launching something else, and your existing product will get bounced to a black hole on your to-do list.


So follow up:


1) Follow up many times. Six is a good starting point.
2) Even your best customers don’t pay attention the first time, or even the fifth time.
3) A great starting price is often not incentive enough. Your best customers are likely to buy even when the price rises, so keep at it.
4) If your best customers are not paying attention (ahem!), guess how much more work you have to do for the rest of your customers.
5) So it’s one sale. Nope, it’s not. If you don’t make this one, you miss out on future sales as well.
6) You can indeed follow up without being a pest — provided you plan your sequence of follow-ups.
7) If you front-load all your follow-ups in one email, you have nothing to follow-up with. So space them out.
8) Plan and put the follow-ups in place at the time when you’re most exuberant (and yes, most exhausted). It may not make sense to work when you’re so fed up of everything, but once the moment passes, it will be even harder to set up any sequence at all.


That’s it.


You now have the 6 most important lessons in marketing.

Unless you follow up 9 or 10 or 15 times.


How many times do you follow up with your list when you have a product or service for sale? Share in the comments below!


About the author:

Sean D’Souza is a writer, marketing guru and expert on sales psychology. To read more articles by Sean, and get a very useful free report on “Why Headlines Fail”, go to

Image: Marketing lessons courtesy of


How Your Local Bookstore Can Help You Consistently Create Content For Your Newsletter

Would You Like Get Ideas For Great Content From Your Bookstore?

Would You Like Get Ideas For Great Content From Your Bookstore?

Every time you sit down to write an article, it’s the same story.

You sit there and you can’t really think of what to put in your newsletter.

You really want to say something, but nothing comes out.


The longer you sit there, the longer the minutes will tick away.

And before you know it, the phone will be ringing, the distractions will be piling up and you’ll find yourself mindlessly wandering through Facebook or emails.


That’s why you need to leave your office.


Go down to your local bookstore instead. Get yourself a coffee or a drink first, and now that you’re in a different state of mind, go to the section where you can find books on your topic.


Which means that if you write about gardening – well, head to the gardening section.

If your business is graphic design, the graphic design section it is. No matter what your area of expertise, you’ll find a few dozen books on the topic.


What do you do next?


Open the book to the Contents Page. Here’s what you’ll find. You’ll find a dozen topics, just sitting there for you. And you? You’re already the expert.

So let’s say your newsletter is about ‘gardening’ and you are in the gardening section of the book store.


Your eye falls on a book called “Raised Bed Gardening”.

You open the book, swing right to the contents page, and voilà, this is what you find:

Chapter 1: Advantages And Benefits To Using Raised Bed Gardens

Chapter 2: The Proper Placement Of Raised Bed Gardens

Chapter 3: Standard Designs and Preparation For Your Raised Bed Garden

Chapter 4: Plants Suitable For Raised Bed Gardens

Chapter 5: Potential Problems That Are Avoided With Raised Bed Gardens

Chapter 6: Making Your Own Compost

Chapter 7: Best Soil Recommendations For Your Raised Bed Garden

Chapter 8: Strategies for Planting Seeds In Your Raised Bed Garden

Chapter 9: Natural Methods To Resolve Crop Infestation

Chapter 10: Crop Rotation In Gardening


Suddenly you have at least ten topics that you know quite a lot about.

Well, get out that pen and paper, or take a picture of the Contents page with your smartphone. And then close the book. Yes, close it, because you have everything you need. Within that Contents page were about ten ideas that you could easily write about—after all, you do know a fair bit about raised bed gardening, don’t you?


But you can’t write ten articles just today, so start with one.

Let’s look at the topic that we spotted in Chapter 9, for instance: Natural methods to resolve crop infestation. Now the author of the book would have methods, but hey, you have your own methods as well.


And this is the important part…


The subscribers on the mailing list — your mailing list — care a hoot about what that author thinks.

But they do care what you think. They care about the way you present your ideas. Remember, they signed up to your list for a reason. So even if you were to write exactly the same ideas as mentioned in the book, they would still want to hear your take on it.


Now that you have your topic, make several points about how you’d deal with ‘infestation’.

Talk about the what: What is infestation?

Talk about the why: Why is it such a problem?

Talk about the when: When does it mostly occur?

Talk about the steps: Step 1, Step 2, Step 3, Step 4.

Talk about the mistakes: What mistakes does a home gardener make?


And there you have it. Your visit to the book store is super-fruitful.

You got ten topics and just one topic has gotten you all fired up. There are still nine more to go. And you’ve opened just one book.

There are dozens more books, but you can leave those for another day. Finish your coffee and let’s head back to someplace where you can jot down your ideas. Once you’ve done the jotting, only then do you go back to your office to complete your article.


But isn’t this plagiarism? Aren’t you just copying and ain’t that nasty?

No, you’re not just copying. That is why you closed the book immediately after you wrote down the topics on the Contents page.

The goal was not to get ‘inspiration’ from what the author wrote. Instead it’s just a way to get you jumpstarted on some topics. Because you sure as heck can write a ton of stuff on any of the topics in the Contents pages of the books on your topic.

The place you were stuck was coming up with the idea itself. If you chose to keep the book open, you might have inadvertently copied the author’s ideas, and that would be bad. Mucho bad!

Instead, all you’re doing is firing up the ideas in your brain and ideas are free. There’s no copyright on ideas.


Surely I can do this while sitting in my office—why go to the book store?


A big part of writing is getting your brain in the right frame of mind. With all those distractions in your office, it’s hard to think, let alone write. In the book store, your mind is a lot more relaxed.


Everyone gets stuck when writing.

Almost everyone continues to sit in their office.

Almost everyone avoids the trip to the local bookstore.

Make the trip. And make it soon.

It sure beats going nuts about writing your next newsletter.


Have you used your local book store to find content? Or do you find content ideas in other nooks and crannies? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments!


About the author:

Sean D’Souza is a writer, marketing guru and expert on sales psychology. To read more articles by Sean, and get a very useful free report on “Why Headlines Fail”, go to

Image: Bookstore courtesy of