The Power of the PAS Framework
Ever wondered what gets the attention of your clients in the feed?
Does it feel like you are invisible on social media?
Have you reached the point of asking, what is the point?
If so, this framework will help you.
If you want to improve any content, whether that is an email, blog or even marketing leaflet, this framework will give you a structure and way to organise your writing to encourage people to take action.
The PAS Framework as it is called isn't new. It's been around for a very long time. It' is a proven method for creating copy which has a big impact on the reader.
The great bit is, that you don't need to be an experienced copywriter to use it.
The PAS Framework
PAS stands for Problem-Agitate-Solution - some call it the agitation framework, but it is the same concept. It's a simple way to use the power of persuasion in copy.
It works well because it is focused on your target audience. It forces you to think like a prospect. You have to step out of your world and dive into theirs.
The first stage of this process is to talk about the problem.
PROBLEM - TALK ABOUT THEIR PROBLEM.
Define a dilemma for your readers.
The hardest part is getting your readers' attention and drawing them into your message.
You must describe the issue in simple, clear, and straightforward terms in the initial step. This grabs their attention and draws them into your message. Logic and fact should prevail at this stage, and once you've identified the issue, you should move into the next phase, which is an emotional appeal. This is where the real magic happens.
AGITATE - PUT SALT IN THE WOUND
Digging into the nitty-gritty details of the problem and unpacking all of the ways that the problem is negatively impacting your audience's life is the agitate step.
Your problem should have dimension, size, shape, colour, smell, and emotional strain in addition to the negative consequences it has on your reader's life.
Although this step is the most powerful in the PAS framework, it is also the aspect that most copywriters and marketers overlook.
They do a good job of identifying the audience and identifying the problem, but they often do not agitate enough.
It is not that stating a problem and providing a solution does not work; it is just that this step is an excellent opportunity to define yourself and your solution in a very compelling way.
This stage is about driving action, based on how the problem is impacting the reader. It's emotional, it touches feelings, that's why it agitates.
SHOW YOUR SOLUTION
After establishing the issue and its emotive consequences on the lives of your audience, you must offer some relief.
Once you have stated the problem, you must provide some assistance.
If you have accomplished steps one and two properly, your answer will probably seem like the most effective solution to your readers’ problem.
Your solution is what you present at this moment, and it will seem like the most obvious solution if you have done a good job with the first two phases.
The PAS approach is all about creating a context for your readers to consider their problem, and then framing your solution as the perfect answer. As I have already said, it is one of the most successful persuasion tactics ever conceived.
Because avoiding pain is more likely to motivate behaviour than pursuing benefits, this is a fundamental lesson in psychology.
Discussing problems may generate three to ten times as many responses as those that discuss the company or the product.
The PAS framework is so effective at prompting action because when you discuss problems, you are, in a sense, “reading people's minds,” tapping into core emotional drives.
People who have problems that persistently bother them usually think a lot, usually in negative terms. When you point out your readers' issues, you're drawing their attention to the problems, setting the foundation for your solution.
When it comes to influencing people, it's a no-brainer that you need to focus on the pain rather than on the pleasure.
Describing a problem in detail demonstrates that you understand the problem and as a result trust increases in your solution.
This positions you as the expert in the minds of your audience.
If you can describe someone else’s problem better than they can, they will automatically assume you have the solution to that problem.