The Power of FOMO as a Conversion Tool

January 19, 2020

LLT Group

“Sign-up for our mailing list to join thousands of business owners just like you who have increased their website’s conversion rate by as much as 500% – hurry before your competition takes the last spot!”

Sounds like a pretty good deal, right? For just the cost of your E-mail address, you could 5x your business’ profits. You could even take sales away from your competitors! You can’t afford NOT to sign up! What are you waiting for?

As you may have already guessed, there’s not actually a mailing list that will increase your conversions by 500% (but if you find it, let us know). What you just experienced was a classic case of FOMO-based marketing, where marketers and business owners do their best to convince you that you’d be crazy not to take them up on their offer.

If your curiosity was piqued by our call to action above, you’re not alone! FOMO can be hard to resist – approximately 69% of millennials experience it and 60% make purchases because of it. Fortunately, you too can harness the power of FOMO to craft convincing and even compelling calls to action to improve your conversion rates.

FOMO – Fear of Missing Out

If you’ve ever been shopping online and bought something you didn’t plan to or overpaid for something in fierce competition, you’ve experienced FOMO. Was it because it was a great deal? Was time running out on Amazon’s Lightning Deal and there was only 1 left? Did you pay too much in an eBay bidding war because you couldn’t let someone else win after they outbid you? These are all classic examples of FOMO that almost everyone has fallen victim to at least once.

FOMO is a psychological trigger in the human brain that stems from the desire to not be left behind. It leverages people’s fear of regret – “if you miss this deal, it’ll never be this cheap again!” – and convinces them to take action. This can be buying a product, signing up for a mailing list, and a variety of other things. Rather than focusing exclusively on the benefits, it’s focusing primarily on the negatives with a hint of positivity at the end of the tunnel.

How to Make FOMO Work for You

The key to being successful online is to capitalize on any traffic your website gets and convert those visitors to customers. In addition to a variety of other conversion rate optimization (CRO) strategies, you can help convince prospective customers to take the plunge. You just need to know the right things to say!

Below are a few ways for you to breed FOMO with your marketing. Keep in mind that they don’t need to be used exclusively, and the right combination of strategies can be the secret to success!

Create a Time Crunch

Our 24-hour promo is coming to an end shortly – secure your spot before time runs out!

When you’re offering products or services online, time is of the essence. The average attention span of an internet user is about 8 seconds, so you have to gain & retain their interest for as long as possible to increase your chances of conversion. In an age when everything is nearly instant and your competition is a few clicks away, creating that urgency helps them to forget about other offers – it doesn’t get better than yours.

To do this, you can introduce an element of time – limited promotions, countdown timers, and more. Creating a race against the clock increase the odds that they will stay on your page and consider your offer rather than leaving and (potentially) coming back because they’re afraid to miss the deal.

Limit Stock

Only 5 left in stock – order now before they’re gone forever!

There’s a reason that “Yeezy” shoes sell out everywhere & you couldn’t find a “Tickle Me Elmo” a few years ago during Christmas time – they’re exclusive releases with limited quantities. Everyone wants to be one of the select few to own highly-desirable items so that they can show them off. This creates a kind of novelty due to the scarcity of the offer and increases the odds that someone will pull the trigger to be part of the “in-crowd” rather than missing out.

You can implement this by offering limited spots on your mailing list, introducing limited releases every so often, or by mentioning that the remaining stock is scarce. This way they’ll be inclined to act now before it’s sold out and the deal is gone forever.

Join a Team, Community, or Club

Join the 58,612 other happy customers who have used our services & fell in love with the results!

Human beings are naturally pack-animals, with the desire to be a part of something bigger than themselves. People want to fit in, which is why brands create a level of “brand culture”, where the brand itself is a marketing tool (see Supreme clothing). The same goes for celebrity-endorsed products like those that have made Kylie Jenner a billionaire. If someone knows that you’ve got a whole list of people who are taking advantage of your offer or are a part of your team/brand & they’re not, their FOMO will kick in.

With “recently bought” popups, you can have a notification show up on the visitor’s screen when someone makes a purchase or registers. With the right verbiage (“Terry just joined the BRAND family!”), you can pique curiosity and have them consider joining the family themselves – even if they don’t know what that means! You can also advertise your mailing list size, customer base, or any other metrics you may have to make people feel like they’re the only one missing out. Additionally, the more users you have that are a part of your list or group, the more trustworthy your brand seems and the more comfortable they will be to join. Flaunt those numbers if you’ve got ‘em!

Introduce Competition

Your competition has already signed up – don’t give them the upper hand!

Competition is naturally one of the largest motivators there is. This is especially true in business where brands in the same industry are constantly in a tug-of-war against each other for market share. Nobody wants to lose customers to someone else, and they’ll take any advantages they can to gain the upper-hand. You can use this psychology to your advantage to evoke the natural competitive spirit.

While this happens automatically if you’re an auction site with direct competition between users, you can still implement competition in your marketing efforts. Use verbiage that highlights the competitiveness of business and let them know that their competitors are prospering while they’re missing out. After all, if their competition can do it, why can’t their far-superior business do it even better?

Instilling a sense of FOMO is basically establishing a sense of urgency or exclusivity into your offers. It is based on the idea of convincing people to make emotionally charged decisions, allowing you to benefit from the impulses your marketing creates. To do this, you can introduce time or stock limits, tap into their natural desire to be part of a team, or stir up their competitive spirit.

With a combination of harnessing FOMO as well as other techniques for conversion rate optimization, you can make the most out of any advertisements you put out or visitors your website gains. This allows you to maximize the effects of your marketing budget, increase sales, and turn a bigger profit.

So, what are you waiting for? Start using FOMO to your advantage now before all your customers go elsewhere – you’re running out of time!

(Sorry, had to drive home the point!)

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