A Proven Framework for Converting Strangers Into Customers

In 1898, Elias St. Elmo Lewis, an eventual inductee of the Promoting Corridor of Fame, anonymously wrote a column about three promoting ideas he discovered helpful all through his profession in a printing journal known as The Inland Printer, one of the most influential American magazines of the 19th century.

In his column, he states {that a} profitable commercial ought to all the time observe a particular method.

“The mission of an commercial is to draw a reader, in order that he’ll take a look at the commercial and begin to learn it; then to curiosity him, in order that he’ll proceed to learn it; then to persuade him, in order that when he has learn it he’ll imagine it. If an commercial incorporates these three qualities of success, it’s a profitable commercial.”

In different phrases, copy is just good if it attracts consideration, generates curiosity, and creates conviction, in that order.

Over a century later, Lewis’ ideas nonetheless ring true. They’re expressed as an acronym, AIDA, and extensively used within the promoting trade. Within the digital age, manufacturers have even primarily based their complete advertising and marketing technique on the AIDA mannequin.

Earlier than we cowl how one can apply the AIDA mannequin to your personal content material advertising and marketing technique, let’s go over what it’s and why it really works.

Download Now: Free Customer Journey Map Templates

Manufacturers use the AIDA mannequin to find out the way in which they need to craft and distribute advertising and marketing messages to their audience at every stage of the customer’s journey.

The AIDA mannequin is taken into account a hierarchy of results mannequin, which implies shoppers should transfer by every stage of the mannequin to finish the specified motion. Similar to a typical advertising and marketing funnel, every stage has fewer shoppers than the earlier one.

AIDA Marketing Model Illustrated With a Funnel

Easy methods to Apply the AIDA Mannequin to Your Advertising and marketing

By creating campaigns and structuring your web site with the AIDA mannequin in thoughts, you will get extra management over your prospects’ paths to a buying determination.

In idea, as they progress by every stage of the mannequin, shoppers who find out about your model will develop sure emotions or feelings about your services or products, which is what finally compels them to behave.

Here is what you are able to do to implement AIDA:

Appeal to Consideration

In case your content material can seize their consideration and deeply have interaction them, your audience will begin to develop into inquisitive about what your organization truly does.

On this stage, the buyer is asking, “What’s it?”

In an effort to get to this stage, you need to first get your content material in entrance of them. This comes with elevated model consciousness and efficient messaging.


Efficient content material advertising and marketing is one methodology of attracting guests to your web site. In case you create content material that solves their issues and focuses on their passions, you’ll draw them in and supply an answer. When executed successfully, your audience ought to be capable of uncover your content material by Google, social media, and different channels.

Wistia does this properly with their content material advertising and marketing, producing not simply instructional weblog posts that drive visitors but additionally entertaining or inspiring “exhibits.” This tactic permits them to not simply handle the pains their prospects have but additionally go above and past to make fixing that downside simpler (and, in some instances, entertaining). Leaning into video as a medium as an alternative of simply running a blog ties into their product and mission, conserving Wistia’s options high of thoughts as prospects eat this content material.

AIDA Attracting Attention Example: Wistia's Learning Center With Blogs and Video

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Generate Curiosity

As soon as your audience is interested by your services or products, they’ll need to study extra about your model, the advantages of your answer, and your potential match with them.

On this stage, the objective is to get them to assume, “I prefer it.”

In an effort to get to this stage, your content material should be persuasive and interesting. Whereas the primary stage of AIDA is capturing their consideration, this stage is about holding it. You are able to do this with a hook.


To illustrate your content material advertising and marketing was efficient in drawing them to the web site to find out about a ache, downside, or want they’ve. You may then “hook” them with participating storytelling that demonstrates the why behind your answer.

Tales resonate with people, and it is a easy solution to convey data in a means that stimulates empathy and curiosity.

To generate sufficient pleasure in your prospects to compel them to behave, it’s essential be sure their affinity to your model hits a sure threshold. The extra aligned you might be with their wants and values, the extra probably you might be to realize success.

Below the Fold is a service that delivers related information articles to its customers. It generates curiosity with its hook: “Tales that do not make it to the entrance web page.” The intrigue on this line opens up a loop (What have I been lacking with out this service?) whereas highlighting their worth proposition of surfacing tales that are not getting protection however are nonetheless vital.

Generate Interest Example: Below the Fold's Hook

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Stimulate Need

Individuals do enterprise with these they know, like, and belief. The primary two levels of the AIDA mannequin set up the know and the like.

The objective of this stage is to alter “I prefer it” to “I need it.”

And that is carried out by cementing within the last piece of the puzzle: Belief.

To do that, hold serving them content material. Make sure that they subscribe to your weblog, observe you on social media, and obtain your provides. The extra prospects work together together with your model, the extra they’ll belief you, boosting the probabilities they’ll finally purchase your services or products.


The prospects you’re almost definitely to shut are the shoppers who envision a future with you — they already get pleasure from consuming your content material and assume your services or products will probably be even higher.

For that reason, you need to institute a spot between the place they’re and the place they may very well be together with your answer. On the identical time, you need to set up social proof with case research and testimonials.

“Earlier than and After” fashion content material is a superb instance of methods to stimulate want whereas gaining belief. Try the headline on this case study by Calendly: “Convert 60% extra PPC leads into bookings utilizing Black Propeller’s secret weapon.” This helps a prospect envision a future with this product (What would my life be like if I achieved related outcomes?). The “earlier than” is them at their present stage, and the “after” is the imaginative and prescient of them with a 60% enhance in conversions. Then, in the event that they learn the total case examine, they get uncovered to social proof from a buyer identical to them.

Stimulate Desire Example: Calendly Case Study

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Spur Into Motion

After you generate sufficient want to your services or products, give your prospects the prospect to behave on it. In any case, what’s the purpose of making content material and constructing deep relationships with prospects if there isn’t a transparent subsequent step?

The objective is to get them to determine, “I am getting it.”

It doesn’t matter what the “subsequent step” is, it is best to compel them to reply with low-friction however high-incentive calls to motion.


Whether or not they’re distant or near a buying determination, the following step that you just current needs to be “high-value.” In different phrases, it should assist them in a roundabout way.

In the event that they perceive what the result of your provide is and discover it beneficial to them, they’re going to be extra prone to act (since they are not merely committing to a gross sales name or gross sales content material).

Take into account precisely how one can present that worth whereas motivating them to have interaction with you.

The CTA for this “subsequent step” or provide needs to be distinguished, clear, and uncomplicated. Maybe it is a button or banner that spells out what motion they need to take and what they get in the event that they do. By eliminating friction within the course of, you enhance your chance of success.

Nerdwallet, a private finance web site that gives sources on all the pieces from credit score to mortgages, has such a CTA. The concept is that they will have interaction their viewers and compel them to motion by providing a comparability device. They spotlight this device instantly on their homepage with a grabby headline and value-driven subheadline together with a high-contrast button. The setup is uncomplicated and friction-free. Nerdwallet is concurrently capable of generate leads whereas empowering and delighting these leads with high-value data.

Spur Action Example: Nerdwallet CTA

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AIDA Drawbacks

Now that you’re acquainted with the AIDA framework and the way it operates, you must also think about a few of its limitations:

1. It does not take note of non-linear purchaser’s journeys.

AIDA does a unbelievable job of describing a linear thought course of for a buying determination. Nevertheless, not all buying choices are linear.

A potential buyer may get their curiosity peaked however finally select a distinct answer, solely coming again to the unique supplier if their wants aren’t met.

Extra generally, somebody might need a want for an answer earlier than being conscious of it and taking motion to seek out it (thus experiencing the Need and Motion earlier than the Consideration and Curiosity).

2. It does not take note of impulse purchases or tremendous quick gross sales cycles.

Along with a non-linear journey, a potential buyer may cycle by a number of levels of AIDA on the identical time — all 4 for an impulse purchase or emergency buy.

3. It is solely a small piece of a holistic enterprise technique.

AIDA can also be restricted to first-time purchases. Some organizations attempt to align their technique round advertising and marketing funnels like AIDA, however this can be a mistake. Funnels have prospects as an output when they need to be on the middle of a progress technique. In any case, it is simpler to retain and/or upsell an current buyer than purchase a brand new one. As well as, with slightly buyer delight, you possibly can earn testimonials and referrals, producing extra consideration, curiosity, and (due to this fact) prospects.

AIDA does not accommodate for this, which is why different fashions — just like the flywheel — are extra applicable for holistic enterprise technique.

4. Specializing in one AIDA component per advertising and marketing tactic is probably not efficient.

Even when utilizing a funnel for one explicit facet of your corporation relatively than a holistic technique, it might nonetheless be straightforward to fall into the lure of segmenting out the 4 letters of AIDA and making use of one letter per every tactic in your advertising and marketing technique. For instance, you may assume, “This weblog publish is to get their consideration,” and solely give attention to that. Nevertheless, a weblog publish ought to ideally appeal to consciousness and generate curiosity… and not less than get them to take some form of motion earlier than they go away your web site.

In different phrases, advertising and marketing ought to be capable of cycle a prospect by a number of levels of AIDA. An efficient advert, for instance, may immediate three or 4 levels of AIDA, spurring a possible purchaser to motion.

5. It is nearly too easy.

AIDA may also be efficient in conceptualizing the shopping for course of in a client’s thoughts when they’re confronted with an advert or different piece of selling collateral. Nevertheless, AIDA could also be too simplistic to explain the levels of a shopping for course of, notably for choices which might be extra concerned or nuanced. As we speak’s consumers have extra sources at their disposal to analysis, comparability store, and so on.

Utilizing the AIDA Framework

Regardless of its drawbacks, the AIDA mannequin is a sturdy framework for guiding your viewers by the customer’s journey and spurring them to behave. And for those who apply it to your content material advertising and marketing, you’ll be leveraging a confirmed method that may constantly have interaction, persuade, and convert an viewers into prospects. Nevertheless, it begins with realizing your buyer journey.

Editor’s word: This publish was initially printed in October 2018 and has been up to date for comprehensiveness.

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