How to Create Urgency in Sales Pitches

Have you ever experienced the sense of urgency that occurs when looking for a last minute birthday present or Christmas present?

If you manage to find the ideal gift, you are much more like to make the purchasing decision quickly and spend more money when doing so.  If there isn’t much stock left on the shelf, you will probably rush to grab the item and take it to the checkout as quickly as possible.

Skilled marketers can create sales pitches that emulate the same sense of urgency in customers.  This is achieved through a series of clever sales tactics.  These tactics use a variety of approaches including scarcity (fear of missing out), emotional appeals, incentives, and deadlines.

This article will explain how to use these tactics to create urgency in your sales pitches with techniques we often use for our Audience Advantage sales presentations.

Help the prospect understand the value of your product

Perhaps the most important tactic for creating urgency in a sales pitch is to emphasise why a prospect needs the product or service you are selling.  This starts with a description of the many incredible benefits that purchasing the item will provide along with some product differentiation (why your product is superior to other products).

However, it doesn’t stop there.  To create urgency, you must also highlight the negative consequences that will occur if they don’t buy.

For example, if they don’t buy your incredible new carpet cleaning product, their carpet will continue to harbour dust mites, toxins, and other contaminants.  It will make their home an unhealthy environment and potentially put their children at risk.

The goal is to make your offer a ‘must have’ purchase instead of a ‘nice to have’ purchase.  When combined with a sense of scarcity, it will trigger the prospect’s loss aversion instinct and make them more likely to complete their purchase as quickly as possible.

Attach a deadline to the sale

A post it with "Only One day left" on it

If a prospect believes there is no time limit for buying a particular product or service, they will often spend more time evaluating its pros and cons.

They may also look at other competitor’s offers, check product specifications, read some online customer reviews and so on.  In some cases, they will simply walk away from your offer temporarily and eventually forget about it.

Avoid these common problems by adding a deadline to your offer.

This could be a limited time offer where they can obtain a 20% discount on the price or an exclusive bonus for customers who purchase in the next 2 hours.

You could even have deadlines for postage, so the consumer knows how much time they have to buy the item if they want to receive it by a certain date.

Use the fear of missing out

The fear of missing out (FOMO) is one of the most effective techniques for creating a sense of urgency.  Triggering FOMO is simple — just tell the customer how many products are left in stock or how many spots are left at your event.

If you are selling online, have the website automatically update the quantity remaining as sales occur.  If an item is selling quickly, mark it with a unique graphic that indicates it is a ‘hot’ product.  Big online stores like eBay Amazon often use this tactic, displaying how many products are left and how quickly they are selling.

Use warm colours

Red, yellow and orange colours

Marketers have discovered that certain colours are more conducive to creating a sense of urgency. A/B testing performed by Hubspot found that warm colours like red, yellow, and orange were better at converting compared to cool colours like green and blue.  This occurs because humans see warm colours like red as signs of danger, importance, and action.  They are attention-grabbing colours that can help to convey a sense of urgency.

Use the vocabulary of urgency

You will need to write compelling ad copy that conveys a sense of urgency to the prospective buyer.  Time-related words are particularly useful as they instantly trigger the notion of scarcity and the fear of missing out.  Incorporate words and phrases like:

  • Exclusive one day sale!
  • Last chance
  • Clearance
  • Hurry
  • Limited time offer
  • Don’t miss out
  • Limited release

Use powerful titles

The title should be the first indication to the prospect that the offer is a matter of urgency.  Use titles which convey the exclusivity, time-limited nature, or scarcity of the offer.  A title like ‘Final Days! Summer Sale Ends Sunday’ or ‘Last Chance: Limited Edition Shoes 50% Off!’ quickly explains that an offer is time-limited or scarce.

Add time-limited bonuses as an inducement

Offering a prospective buyer a bonus item if they make a purchase within the next hour will immediately create a sense of urgency.  They know they must act if they want their ‘free’ item.  Even low-value ‘mystery items’ have been proven to trigger a sense of urgency in some buyers.

Keep ramping the urgency up

If you have the user’s email address or phone number available, continue to ramp up the urgency with follow up contacts.  A quick email that lets a prospect know how much time they have left on an exclusive offer may inspire them to act.  You can also add a time-limited bonus to later emails in order to sweeten the deal.

Lower any barriers that prevent quick transactions

Try to make the purchasing process as streamlined as possible and remove any issues which may cause the prospect to delay their purchase.  For example, if you are contacting a prospect for the first time, there may be limited trust or rapport.  Reduce the impact of this barrier by highlighting your money back guarantee and many testimonials.

If you are selling online, make it easier for the prospect to complete the purchase by streamlining the checkout process.  This will help them complete their urgent purchase without second-guessing themselves.

Thanks for reading How to Create Urgency in Sales Pitches.  Try incorporating these techniques into your pitches to see how conversion rates are affected — you will be pleasantly surprised.

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