Apples-to-Oranges, Using Contrast and Compare to Make More Cash

After the last post on using commitment and consistency to increase conversion rates, I received some questions about some of the other C’s of copywriting.

Great copywriting is like putting together a puzzle where each piece trigger that emotional or leads the reader down a nicely paved path toward your ultimate goal.

We’ve talked about many of the pieces in the past and will talk about many in the future.

So we’re going to look at two more “puzzle pieces” that are actually pretty fun to use (hey, I don’t get out much 🙂

The first is one that psychologically prepares the prospect to easily purchase what you want to sell at the price you want them to pay.

It’s “devilishly” subtle and works great when done right.

You see it a lot both on the Internet and off it, but lately Internet Marketers have so abused it that is some niches it doesn’t work as well; it still works but you just have to do it better.

What am I talking about?

Contrast and Compare

Contrast is when you compare one thing to the other to make the perceived differences much greater and make the one you want them to choose look even better than it did.

But you never want to do an apples-to-apples comparison because that brings you down to the lowest common denominator and, to be honest, it may make you look bad; it don’t mean your offer is actually bad but it may appear bad and it isn’t the value of the deal it is the perception of the value of the deal that is important.

Always compare apples-to-oranges.

Selling a $97 dollar e-book, don’t compare it to the $27 e-book (or even the $97 e-book) compare it to the $997 home study course.

Selling a $997 home study course, compare it to the $1,997 (plus expense for travel, food and lodging) 3-day seminar.

Selling a $1,997 3-day seminar, compare it to the $9,997 coaching program.

Heck, if you’re selling that $97 e-book compare it to the home study course, the 3-day seminar and the coaching program.

By the time you get to $97 they’ll be thinking what a great bargain they’re getting.

A great example of this I heard about from Yanik Silver.

Some company was selling a book.

They had a premium version in a special custom case that was signed by the author for over a thousand bucks.

They had something like a “corporate” version that sold for hundreds and they had the one they really wanted to sell – just a regular book – for about $25.

After hearing about the higher priced versions they were thinking how much they saved by buying the cheapest one not “what am I getting for my $25?”

I can hear the thoughts now.

“Do I really need that special case and author’s signature or should I pocket those many hundreds of dollars?”

“Do I need … or should I save that couple of hundred bucks and just get the regular book?”

“Yeah, I’ll do that. Man, I’ll save over $1,000, I’m taking these guys to the cleaners!”

And now you’ve got the sale you wanted to get at the price you wanted to get and, as a bonus, you actually do get some sales for the higher priced versions.

Contrast and compare is also great for doing down sells; you’ve probably seen those.

You go to a sales page and try to go off it and a window pops up and says, “hey I’ll give you the same deal except this one or two things for half the price.”

So now the prospect is not thinking about spending that $47 they’re thinking how they’re getting almost the $97 offer for less than half price.

Can you say buy, buy, buy? Those things convert like crazy.

Whatever apple you are selling you can find one or more oranges to compare it to. You can even compare it to a peach and a pear and a banana!


Contrast and compare, it works, and gives you another piece of the puzzle.

In essence, you find something that is similar enough (both “fruits”) that you can compare favorably to in one or more specific and desirable ways – is less expensive, works faster, gets better results, is more popular, whatever.

Then you present the “orange” and compare and contrast it to your “better apple”.

This has always improved conversions and likely always will.

Next time we’ll look at another of the C’s of great copywriting, one where you drive your prospects wild 🙂

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How do you use contrast and compare?

Got any great example of using it, either yours or someone else’s?

Leave a comment and let me know.

Talk soon,


The Shameless (Ethical) Marketer

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Apples-to-Oranges, Using Contrast and Compare to Make More Cash (via @DavidHusnian)


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