Since marketing became an academic discipline, marketing experts have segmented the marketing process into:

  • Psychographic: understanding the thinking process of the prospect
  • Demographic: understanding the target market
  • Geography: location of the prospect
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This framework for marketing has been used by all marketing experts since the dawn of time.

But Gary Bencivenga the legendary copywriter has introduced a new twist into the marketing triangle.

In his final appearance prior to his retirement, Mr. Bencivenga revealed his ‘Bencigenga Persuasion Equation’ that was responsible for his phenomenon success making him one of the greatest copywriters who ever walked the planet earth.

The ‘Bencivenga Persuasion Equation’ was what he used to create control package after control package that resulted in billions of dollar worth of products and services being sold.

His theory is: there are five reasons a prospect will not respond to a marketing offer:

  • They have no time
  • They have no interest
  • They do not see any perceived difference
  • They do not believe the offer or seller
  • They do not want to make decision at that moment in time

Therefore, in order to persuade anyone to respond to any offer, the offer must contain the following four elements:

Urgent Problem


Unique Promise


Unquestionable Proof


User-friendly Preposition



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As Mr. Bencivenga puts it, problem is market. All the fancy language marketing experts use does not get to the core of the marketing issue which is a product or service has to solve a pressing problem.

Consequently, when you desire to persuade someone to respond to your offer, you need to answer the following questions:

  • What urgent problem is my product or service solving?
  • What promise can I make about my ability to solve that problem?
  • What proof element do I have to demonstrate my ability to solve that problem?
  • What user-friendly preposition can I make to the prospect to sweeten the buying decision?

When a marketing collateral contains all of the above elements, it becomes easy to persuade a prospect to buy your product or service.

The most important of the four is the proof element. People have been given promises for years that have not been kept by marketers. As you are aware, marketers along with politicians are the least trusted people in any society.

Therefore, if you want to ensure that your prospect believe your claims, you will need to demonstrate to them beyond doubt that your claims are trustworthy. This is why it is essential that every marketing piece has a testimonial and a guarantee.

When you say it about yourself, it’s bragging, when someone else says it about you, it’s proof.

Secondly, you need to put your money where your mouth is. If you believe in your product or service, you need to be able to guarantee it. If you cannot guarantee your product or service then you need to find something else to do.

Marketing or the act of persuasion is easy as long as you infuse those four elements into your marketing campaign.