As I mentioned in my last post, my background is in publishing and copywriting. As I’ve studied the elements of persuasion one of my favorite quotes comes from copywriting guru John Carlton (author of the infamous three-legged golfer headline) who says the best persuasion comes from the…
Juxtaposition of Incongruent Elements
Let’s unpack that a bit, eh?
According to Carlton, we live life in a trance, droning from one task to the next. We have a getting to work “trance,” a “making dinner” trance, a getting dressed trance, a “stick anything you do on a daily basis here” trance. Some people could call this process a “routine” but it’s a bit more than that because much of what we do is automatic, without thinking.
So, he advises marketers to break the audience trance by combining two “incongruent elements.” This causes the “prospect” to pause just long enough to break their trance and give their incredibly-valuable attention to the marketer. Then, depending on the marketer’s skills, the prospect can be reeled in.
That’s how it works in theory… and overall it’s quite effective.
However, through the years I’ve noticed how this technique is used by not only marketers, but by some religious folks to manipulate their flocks: the blind see, lame walk, thoughts become things, give god money and you’ll get rich, and so forth.
It’s a fascinating concept, hence the name.
I’ll talk more about this later. ‘Til then I’ve got some posts from my previous blog to import…
Glad you stopped by!