Are you ready to learn some of the most powerful persuasion techniques used by online marketing gurus?
In this post, I’m going to examine and evaluate the three most impactful marketing psychology tactics that Gabriel St Germain employs to promote his course eCom Blueprint 2.0.
I will show you, step by step, how these techniques are applied, with real examples and tips to help you apply them in your own business.
This post will cover:
- A mental shortcut used by humans to make decisions and how to benefit from it
- How Gabriel uses fear of loss to his advantage
- How to better position your product/service to drive higher customer conversions
Who is Gabriel St Germain?
Gabriel St Germain is a 21-year-old entrepreneur who dropped out of university to pursue entrepreneurship full time.
He now teaches students how to make money through dropshipping and e-commerce.
Gabriel has developed his brand through social media and has generated a large following.
As of June, 2020:
- 33k+ followers on Instagram.
- 10k+ followers on Facebook.
- 217k+ subscribers on Youtube
Gabriel runs multiple businesses and teaches people how to start their own business and grow it with social media.
He claims to have generated over $4 million in sales from his own e-commerce stores.
How Gabriel St Germain Uses Social Proof
Social proof is one of the key strategies that Gabriel is implementing through Facebook and Instagram in order to promote his eCom Blueprint 2.0 course.
I am going to show you concrete examples of how he is using this strategy to influence his target audience. But firstly, let me first put you in a decision-making situation to better clarify this concept.
Imagine you have travelled to a city you’ve never visited before and you want to find a good restaurant where you can eat delicious macaroni.
How do you make this decision?
There’s a good chance you’ll use a site like Trip Advisor to search for restaurants offering pasta dishes in the city.
When reviewing websites like Trip Advisor to find restaurants, people use a mental shortcut to assist with their decision making.
Sorting through potentially hundreds of pasta restaurants would be difficult and time consuming. To save time, you rely on reviews from others to make your decision.
You’re much more likely to select a restaurant with 100 five star reviews over one with only 2 five star reviews.
Have you ever asked yourself why you do this?
There is indeed a psychological reason behind it!
As humans, we tend to use other people’s opinions as a mental shortcut for making decisions. We automatically equate popularity with quality. That is to say, if something has been endorsed by others, we assume it must be good.
This is called social proof.
Now let’s see how this is used by Gabriel.
Firstly, he highlights the increasing number of subscribers on his YouTube channel and his Instagram account. This helps him implicitly tell you that the content he’s sharing is interesting and helpful. Thus, it keeps attracting more people.
He also uses social proof to promote his private Facebook mastermind group. Gabriel cross-promotes the group through his YouTube channel and draws attention to the growing member numbers.
This signals to his viewers that all these other people have supported the group and it must be valuable.
However, Gabriel’s most effective use of social proof is in his testimonials. He regularly showcases screenshots of posts from students who have experienced success with eCom Blueprint 2.0.
These screenshots include positive reviews and success stories. For added impact, they also include screenshots from their Shopify accounts, showing their earnings.
This adds credibility to Gabriel’s course and builds trust.
Testimonials such as these also serve to increase the prospect’s belief that success is possible. It simply means that if they can do it, you can do it too!
Many people following Gabriel’s content may have attempted to make money online in the past. Likely, they have failed in those attempts which may have eroded their own confidence.
Gabriel knows that if a prospect doesn’t believe they are capable of achieving the results, they won’t buy.
Marketers across all industries will leverage testimonials to sell their products. As humans, we trust the opinions of others.
Testimonials and reviews are so powerful that many businesses and marketing gurus will even pay actors to record fake testimonials for them.
You can make your social proof even more effective by including video testimonials in your marketing, as shown in the example below from Walter & Irvine Real Estate agents.
Video testimonials are said to be 90% more effective than written reviews.
To see further examples of this persuasion factor, read my article about Kerwin Rae.
The Psychology of Limited Time Offers – Loss Aversion
The premise of loss aversion is simple.
It’s a bias suggesting that, for individuals, the psychological impact resulting from the pain of loss is twice as strong as the pleasure of gain.
For this reason, humans are highly motivated to avoid anything that could result in significant loss. The brain doesn’t want to experience the pain of loss so it resists anything that has the potential for loss.
Insurance companies are built on the concept of loss aversion. They play into our biases and persuade us to buy their policies.
Due to our fear of loss, we prefer to make small lifetime regular payments for insurance coverage, rather than enduring these large losses, that may or may not happen.
Gabriel St Germain triggers the loss aversion bias by offering limited time discounts…
For example, in this Facebook post, he is offering a discount code of $50 to encourage people to buy his course. By highlighting that the offer will be ending soon, he’s able to activate the fear of loss.
People are afraid to miss out on a special deal. They don’t want to lose the opportunity.
This tactic also create a sense of urgency. People feel compelled to act urgently do avoid missing out on this deal.
He uses the same approach on his personal website too:
The language used in his ad copy is designed to reinforce the fear of missing out.
Phrases like “this is your last chance to get…….” or “Valid for …only” are commonly used in conjunction with limited time offers to maximize the sense of urgency.
While marketers can use the loss aversion bias to their advantage, it’s also something they need to overcome.
Any purchase involves loss. The customer is losing the money that they spend on the purchase.
To overcome this, marketers need to reduce the pain associated with spending money as much as possible.
A common tactic used to achieve this is a money back guarantee. This is known as a ‘risk reversal.’
Gabriel offers a 14 day refund policy to make consumers more comfortable with the purchase.
Money back guarantees can help marketers to remove some of the risk associated with purchasing their products. However, most buyers will still feel a sense of risk.
Buyers know that many businesses will include terms and conditions that make it difficult for the buyer to claim on the money back guarantee.
As you can see in the screenshot above, Gabriel states that his refund policy doesn’t apply if you’ve viewed more than 20% of his course.
For a money back guarantee to be truly effective, businesses need to go further in providing a guarantee with no strings attached.
Ease and Convenience
The human brain likes things that are easy and convenient.
Anything difficult is seen as a threat that could drain valuable resources such as your energy.
This is why people gravitate towards products that are positioned as ‘shortcuts‘ or even get rich quick schemes. The prospect of receiving a reward in exchange for little effort is very appealing to the brain.
People tend to prioritize convenience over most other factors when making purchasing decisions. We prefer that which can make our lives easier and more comfortable.
This is one of the key reasons streaming services like Netflix have beaten traditional video hire services like Blockbuster.
Netflix offers convenience. Everything is available on demand. You don’t need to drive to your local Blockbuster store every time you want to watch a movie and return it.
The convenience factor is now considered to be one of the biggest drivers of customer conversion and long-term customer loyalty, particularly when selling to millennial’s.
For instance, In a study, Russel-Bennett et al. (2017) found that customers prefer to use an interface that offers greater functional value, ease of use, convenience of on-demand availability, fun and reward programs.
Gabriel knows very well how to use this psychological driver in his favor.
His sales page and Facebook ads are designed to give you the impression that e-commerce success is going to be easy if you follow his program.
As I have discussed in other posts, certain words and phrases can be used to create a perception of ease. In his ad copy, Gabriel uses phrases like step-by-step blueprint and exact strategy.
These phrases communicate to the audience that the hard work has already been done.
The value proposition being offered by Gabriel is very appealing to the part of the brain that desires ease and convenience.
I my post on marketing guru John Crestani, I discuss in more detail how this concept can be applied in the online marketing space.
But appealing to the desire for ease and convenience is something that can persuade customers in other industries as well.
Fintech startup Habito recognized this and built their own value proposition and marketing around ease and convenience. They understand that getting a mortgage can be a difficult and stressful experience for most people.
To counter this, they position their service as an easy, simple alternative to competitors.
Their promise is to make your life easier by giving you a recommendation in real-time, at your convenience and from wherever you are.
If you would like to see how Gabriel St Germain applies marketing and persuasion techniques for yourself, you can view his sales page for Ecom Blueprint 2.0.
Gabriel does execute well on some of these persuasion techniques without overdoing it.
There is a lot to learn from the sales materials of Gabriel and other online marketers. By observing the tactics they deploy, you can take them and paste them into your business.
These techniques discussed in this post are very applicable if you offer an educational service. But as some of the additional examples showed, they can be applied to other industries as well.
The concepts of social proof and the desire for ease and convenience are important to understand no matter what industry you’re in.
If you want to truly grasp these concepts, it’s important to see examples of how they are applied by real businesses. That’s why I’ve analyzed some of the most persuasive sales and marketing campaigns in the world on this blog.
Check out some of my previous posts to learn more.