"The Hypnotic Power of Confusion"
by Joe Vitale
"Did you walk to work or carry a lunch?"
My father asked me that question more than 25 years ago. I still
remember it. Why? Because it's a ridiculous question.
A famous comedian in the 1950s used to ask people, "Got
a banana?" The question might make sense if asked in the
right situation, but he asked it everywhere. I've forgotten the
name of the comedian, but I still recall his question. Why? Because
As I write this, I am creating new business cards for myself.
I decided to add a confusing line to it. After some fun brainstorming
with my girlfriend, I settled on, "Ask me about the monkey."
Why is "Ask me about the monkey?" worth putting on
my business card? As with my father's question and the comedian's
question, it stops your brain in its tracks. It makes you pause.
It makes you focus on ME. The theory is that once you stop someone
with a confusing line, you can then implant a hypnotic command
right after it.
In other words, if I write something like, "Apples desk
fly dirt," and then follow it with, "Read my new ebook,"
the chances are very high that you are going to want to read my
Why? Because the first line jammed your mind, and the second
line slipped into your brain while you weren't looking. I've just
upped the odds that you will buy my new e-book. And if you don't,
of course, it doesn't matter because I never really told you to
go buy it. See?
The same thing will happen on my new business cards. Since I'm
now known as "The World's First Hypnotic Marketer,"
I wanted a strange, confusing line on my new card. When someone
sees, "Ask me about the monkey," and then asks me about
the monkey, I can simply point out that I practice hypnotic selling
and I just got them to do what I wanted.
The Japanese practice this "hypnotic confusion," but
probably unknowingly. A friend of mine who flew to Japan reported
to me that the English phrases on all the Japanese products were
bizarre. A tube of toothpaste might say, "Green days you
not sing." A box of cookies might say, "Wood above fish."
How can you use this secret right now? Don't be afraid to be
confusing. People tend to sort out whatever you say anyway and
make sense out of it using their own terms.
If you are describing your product in great detail, be willing
to toss in something odd. It may increase sales.
If not, swirl up!
Joe Vitale is recognized by many to be one of the greatest living
copywriters. His latest project, the Hypnotic
Writer's Swipe File is a collection of over 1,550 copywriting
gems that took him years to compile. This is his personal swipe
file that he uses to create world famous sales letters responsible
for generating millions and millions of dollars of revenue.
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