In a previous life, I was responsible for writing advertorial content for a large online newspaper in New Zealand where I would write articles designed to drive traffic and sell products and services.

During this time what I’ve found is that it isn’t the “words” that sell but the strategy hidden behind those words primes the sale.

In this article, I’m going to share with you 9 commonly-used tactics found inside million dollar articles including a link to an actual million dollar article that generated a million dollars in 48 hours using nothing but stone cold banner traffic.

  1. Single Problem-Focused Headline
  2. The Bribe
  3. The Epiphany
  4. The Predominant Idea
  5. Chain Of Beliefs
  6. The Unique Mechanism
  7. The Spokesperson
  8. The Solution
  9. Irresistible Offer


  1. Single Problem-Focused Headline

The closer someone is to making a purchase, the more specific the information they require.

For example, someone who has an awareness of their “foot problem” is very different to someone who has an awareness of their “plantar fasciitis” which is a specific type of foot pain.

The person who has a foot problem is still in the very early stages of awareness while the person who is completely aware of their ailment is highly attracted to content that promises to solve or give unique insights to help the person resolve the issue.

Your headline needs to speak directly to the specific pain point that the reader is currently experiencing.

This 60 Second Morning Tibetan Stretch Technique Instantly Relieves Plantar Fasciitis Pain

That would be interesting to anyone who suffers from PF because I know that the morning is a particular problem area because PF sufferers will typically spend 10-20 minutes stretching just to be able to hobble around the place.

The headline is curious (what is a Tibetan stretch?) it speaks to a specific pain point which is the morning ritual (they can sleep in an extra 20 minutes) and it offers instant relief.

Obviously, you would need to build out your buyer persona beforehand so you know which hot buttons to push.


  1. The Bribe

The job of the headline is to get the reader into the first paragraph, the job of the bribe is to sell the reader on why they should spend the next few minutes reading your information.

Consumption is essential to sales content.

The bribe is as simple as saying “In this article you will learn A, B and C…”

You can have a list of items or give them one single high-value benefit, either way, the bribe needs to appear early in the piece.

  1. The Epiphany

Did you know that when someone experiences an epiphany that it changes the physical nature of their brain?

Just by sharing an idea you can create an incredible amount of value because it has the potential to changes the readers’ perspective on their problem which then changes their perspective on what solution they need which if executed correctly will be your solution!

One of the easiest ways to produce this light-bulb moment is to unveil the root cause.

Most problems are really symptoms of a deeper issue and bringing that to the surface you can give new hope to even the most jaded reader who has “heard it all”.

And if a person has hope then we can advance them to our solution.


  1. The Predominant Idea

Vegans do not wear or eat animal products because they have bought into a predominant idea regarding cruelty to animals and that plant-based nutrition is superior for overall health.

The predominant idea is the overarching or dominant belief that the reader must have in order for you to sell your solution.

For example,

Person B buys regular milk.
Predominant idea: “I just need milk for breakfast, milk is milk.”

Personal A buys organic milk.
Predominant idea: “Organic milk comes from healthy cows which makes me healthy.”

Given all options available, Person A will always reach for the organic milk.

The predominant idea is what ultimately guides the buying decision.

What overarching core idea does your reader need to have before they will buy your product?


  1. The Chain Of Beliefs

Do you think the earth is flat?

Some people do.

But I’m willing to bet that person didn’t just buy into the predominant idea that the earth is flat.

Perhaps they have seen it on YouTube and began finding more information to the point that they had enough “evidence” to support this premise where it finally became the new predominant idea where an interesting phenomena thing happens.

They try to convince others and they stop listening to anyone who has an opposing belief (sound a little like religion?)

Like the flat-earther sometimes we need to build up the evidence to support our big idea and this is called the chain of beliefs.

What arguments does your reader need to accept before they will buy into the predominant idea?

List them out.

Imagine that you’re talking with one of your friends and you’re building a case for your core idea what point would you lead with? What would be the next point and so on.

Once you’ve finished your arguments should all line up to the predominant idea.

  1. The Unique Mechanism

Infomercials generate a lot of revenue and one of the main strategies you’ll see is used is the unique mechanism.

The unique mechanism is a part of your solution or process that makes buying your solution essential.

This is most obvious in the diet supplement industry.

Look at the latest selling supplement, it’ll have a unique ingredient that is directly tied to solving either the root cause of a problem or the major pain point of the market.

Keep in mind that your unique mechanism is not your product or service.

If I have a new supplement to sell I’ll first make sure I’ve sold the reader on the unique ingredient before introducing my solution.

  1. The Spokesperson

People want to know that they’re getting information from a real person so as early as it makes sense you’ll want to introduce your spokesperson.

This means sharing;

  1. Name
  2. Credentials i.e. what makes them qualified to speak on the subject?
  3. Brief backstory
  4. Photo

The spokesperson should be an authority on the subject matter meaning that they could be an insider/whistle-blower or was once where the reader is and has now where the reader desires to be typically seen them in weight loss and financial industries

  1. The Solution

The biggest mistake that content creators make is that they introduce their solution too soon.

The best articles spend 75% of the article setting up the sale using the above strategies then they will present the solution which at this stage becomes the only viable option for the reader.

Here you would simply present your solution including relevant features and benefits.


  1. An Irresistible Offer

All the hard work has been done so the job of the irresistible offer is to knock the reader off the fence and get them to make the final commitment.

The offer can be a discount on the first order, friendly payment terms etc.

There are 11 basic offer types:

  1. Hard offer – full price up front
  2. Soft offer – have no pay later
  3. Continuity – pay ongoing until you cancel
  4. Instalment offer – pay every month
  5. Legacy offer – pay one fee and get service for life
  6. Exclusive offer – available only to specific demographics
  7. Limited offer – limited quantities
  8. Limited time offer – time sensitive offer
  9. One time offer – only available right now at this price
  10. Qualified offer – fill out forms, jump through hoops and we decide whether you can have the offer
  11. Bundle offer – packaged products at a friendly price


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