How To Use Trigger Writing Compel Your Audience (Ethically)

By: Rafal Reyzer
Updated: Oct 4th, 2023

How to use trigger writing - featured image

Trigger writing is a style of writing that evokes an emotional response in readers and compels them to take action.

So how can you embellish your writing to tell a great story and earn the right to advertise as the last step? Let’s check out how to use trigger writing and inspire your readers to take action.

Understanding Trigger Writing

At its heart, trigger writing revolves around the bond between words and the emotions or images they evoke in readers. While ‘triggers’ in psychology often refer to stimuli prompting specific reactions or memories, especially from trauma, in the context of writing, their scope broadens. Here, triggers make readers draw upon their own emotional history and experiences, connecting words to similar thoughts, feelings, and visuals. These triggers, whether a single impactful word, a phrase, or an evocative sentence, stimulate profound internal reactions. They delve deep, making impressions that linger far beyond the words on the page.

words as triggers

Using the right word at the right time can make all the difference.

How to Increase Sales Using Trigger Words

Trigger words cause your target audience to feel certain ways. In this article, I’ll explain how employing trigger words in online promotion can increase sales. While some words are airy, others demand action. Trigger words are terms that direct readers. They force readers to sit straight and think about taking action that they would not have otherwise considered. Trigger words are among the most effective sales tools you may have if you work as a course producer or marketer. An aimless piece of ad copy can become a sensor pitch that persuades readers to convert with the usage of the proper trigger words. The level of conversion results from every single word in the copy. Here, we will outline the trigger words’ ABCs, explain why they are effective, and show you how to apply them in your sales copy.

What Is a Trigger Word?

Trigger words are terms or phrases that prompt readers or listeners to perform a crucial action, often known as a conversion. They are called trigger words since they tap into common human emotions and experiences and bring back associated memories. One important distinction: Trigger words are not unique or distinctive terms. Since they are widely used English words, context is essential. When you’re counting the days to a trip or attempting to get a good bargain on a last-minute sale, hearing “just one day left” might be exciting or purchase-inspiring. Consider the slogan for a fictitious beverage, “Hot outside? With this new beverage, quench your thirst.” You start by drawing attention to a concealed issue—namely, the heat. The next thing you do is state the action you expect your reader to perform, which is to buy a fresh drink to quench their thirst. When done correctly, this does not feel intrusive. Instead of thinking, “Damn those devious marketers”, your reader will think, “Oh, well, I’m thirsty—I might as well take one of these.” That shows the effectiveness of trigger words. Or, let’s say you’re opening a new restaurant. How about offering every dinner a complimentary appetizer? Perhaps offering them a special reward would pique their interest?

Typically, trigger words can:

  • Dig into the emotional needs of your audience
  • Create suspense, thrills, and drama
  • Establish a feeling of urgency

Of course, this is what most marketing communications should do. But next time you write, pay special attention to your trigger phrases because these are the ones that work the hardest to lure customers to you and close the sale.

hitting the spot with your writing

Aim to hit that emotional spot in your reader’s minds.

Why Are Trigger Words Effective?

Each paragraph of text in a book or article tries to inform or entertain you. The phrases are creative, but they don’t elicit a particular response. That is because there is no strategic use of trigger phrases to draw attention to, frame, and persuade you to take the important action. But the sales copy is entirely different. Each paragraph of sales copy presents a problem, entices you with an emotionally fascinating scenario, and then persuades you to undertake the action that either makes the scenario a reality or avoids it. You are not instructing your target; instead, you are luring them toward the action you expect them to take before tying the knot with a key term or phrase.

Where Exactly to Add Trigger Words to Increase Sales

Your Heading

The most noticeable text in an ad is a headline, which is the largest piece of copy on a sales asset. Headlines stand out so they comprise a fantastic spot to add emotion-driven trigger words. Your title would be the largest lettering on the image for billboard advertisements. The headline for social media marketing is typically the language of your photo, not the caption. And the headline is typically the content at the top of landing pages and publications. Employing trigger words in headings requires tact and elegance. In some circumstances, you will need to state the issue before using words or phrases that cause a particular action. It’s possible to start an advertisement with “purchase now”, but if it does not work, it is like popping the big question on the first date.

Your Subheading

Following the main title is your sub-headline. Even though it is typically smaller, most viewers still read it. This can be an excellent spot to incorporate some trigger words if you are using a gentler approach. The title will have enough room to provide background information before you can close the deal. You also have a bit more space to work with because sub-headlines are short. “Taste our new sandwich” may be all that fits in a headline, but you have more room to say more in a subheading. You would have room for anything like this: “Would you like (do you want) a meal that will satisfy your hunger? Today, taste (try) our brand-new sandwich.”

Your Call-to-Action

Your call-to-action (CTA) is a brief passage that instructs viewers what to do after reading an advertisement. In CTAs, trigger words can indeed be especially useful for expressing the advantages of taking that essential next action or the urgency surrounding it. CTAs can have a variety of tones, from the blunt “purchase now” to the softer “find out more”. However, people prefer to be told what to do. One of our chief responsibilities as marketers is to provide clear CTAs. I advise you to use trigger words and to strive for more precise CTAs. “Get 40% off now” is a stronger hook than “see the link in bio”, and “try a free demo” is much more persuasive than “find out more”. Incorporate trigger words into your CTAs, both on social media and elsewhere, and you will see an increase in purchases.

heart on a book - inspiring emotions in readers

Trigger words are great for eliciting an emotional response and inspiring action.

Use Trigger Words to Engage Your Audience

Consider asking a stranger to perform a task for you. It can be to cast a ballot for your local candidate, go to the launch party at a new restaurant, or open a link in an email to visit your website. How could you convince strangers to comply with your request? The likelihood is that you will use persuasion to tempt and encourage, emphasizing the benefits they will get if they opt to do as you wish, short of crawling on your knees. Getting one has never been easier by choosing the best Wix pricing plan; and with any of these plans, you have the option of paying monthly or in advance (for one year or more). The same applies to your marketing communications. You need to use words to convince people that you have their best interests in mind.

words have power written on a notepad

Add these trigger words to your arsenal and make your writing more effective.

How to Choose the Right Trigger Word

The things you want your viewers to do and feel should guide your selection of trigger phrases. It’s helpful to think about trigger words as belonging to specific genres. This lets you decide what kind of trigger words would be acceptable for your message after determining which genre your message falls under. The categories and associated trigger words listed below are not all-inclusive. Keep in mind that some terms, like “new”, “free”, and “secret” work in a variety of contexts, but other words will only apply in certain situations.

Trigger Words for Belonging

When you wish for your followers to feel like a select tribe, these trigger words can be effective. These lines essentially suggest, “Leave the rest behind and join us; we’re just like you.”

  • Exclusive
  • Secret
  • Club
  • Join
  • Revolutionary
  • Elite
  • Be part of
  • Never
  • Welcome
  • Be among the first

Enticing Trigger Phrases

When you desire your audience to be just as enthusiastic about your items as you are, while simultaneously driving home the point that they need to act swiftly before they miss out, use language like the following:

  • Delightful
  • Wonderful
  • Don’t miss out
  • Ultimate
  • Best
  • Seize
  • Deadline
  • Only
  • Don’t forget
  • New
  • Imagine
  • Countdown

Triggering Phrases for Sharing

You might wish to be viewed as the one who shared forbidden information, just like that titan Prometheus, who took the understanding of flames from the gods and brought it to humans. In that situation, try using these words:

  • Secret
  • Unlock
  • Share
  • Learn
  • Professional
  • Mystery
  • In the know
  • Limited
  • Unveil
  • Exposed
  • Forbidden
  • Discover

Trigger Words that Transform

People always want to change something about their lives. This yearning for transformation is deeply embedded in the human psyche. Here are the words you can use to trigger the right response:

  • Turn
  • Transform
  • Easier
  • Become
  • Before
  • More
  • Wish
  • Grow
  • Make
  • Better
  • Change
  • Dream
  • Stronger
  • Quicker

Trigger Words for Greed

Giving clients what you realize they want—the opportunity to get discounted (or, better yet, free) goods right away—can be the key in some situations.

  • Cheaper
  • Free
  • Today
  • Instant
  • Limited
  • Easy
  • Simply
  • Just
  • Now
  • While available
  • More
  • Win

Do Not Be Over Triggered

While it can be tempting to overuse strong trigger phrases to promote your products, doing so will make you appear dishonest from the perspective of your target audience. Apply everything you’ve learned here with caution and let your sales grow like never before. Next up, you may want to explore a guide on how to write an essay on any topic.

Rafal Reyzer

Rafal Reyzer

Hey there, welcome to my blog! I'm a full-time entrepreneur building two companies, a digital marketer, and a content creator with 10+ years of experience. I started to provide you with great tools and strategies you can use to become a proficient digital marketer and achieve freedom through online creativity. My site is a one-stop shop for digital marketers, and content enthusiasts who want to be independent, earn more money, and create beautiful things. Explore my journey here, and don't miss out on my AI Marketing Mastery online course.