List of Emotional Trigger Words to Boost Sales

Pulling on customers’ heartstrings has been a top means of boosting sales since time immemorial. As consumers, faced with a number of mechanical advertisement tactics a day, and hence it is but natural that we yearn for and gravitate towards the ones that boast of some human touch.

Tugging at emotions is as human as it could get. So this is the path that companies often follow in their marketing schemes to stand out from amongst the sea of brands.

One manner in which companies have incorporated emotional relatability into their advertisements or other marketing schemes like email marketing is by the use of ‘trigger words’ or emotional words.

These words stand out from amongst the content, grab their attention and help keep them engaged and interested. They can be used in different locations throughout the marketing content but most often, emotional trigger words are used in headlines, subheadings, landing pages, calls to action buttons, or in pop-ups.

What are Trigger Words?

What are Trigger Words?

Trigger words are quite literally words in an advertisement or other marketing means that ‘trigger’ or evoke some emotion in the target audience.

There are certain emotions that a large population will relate to and be affected by, i.e. they will empathize with certain feelings. Trigger words utilize this very cosmopolitan feeling of empathy to their benefit.

They strike a nerve and spark interest amongst consumers. This captures their attention and holds it. Once you have acquired your customers’ attention, you can conjure up in your target audience, the urge to open and engage with your content, thus boosting sales and conversions.

Importance of Trigger Words in Email Marketing & Human Psychology Behind Them

Importance of Trigger Words in Email Marketing & Human Psychology Behind Them

Humans are first and foremost emotional beings and then rational ones. Logic is often overpowered by emotions. Our attitudes, decisions, perceptions and actions are all ruled by our emotions.

When faced with a marketing email, a consumer is first faced with the decision of whether or not to open the mail. This is followed by the decision of whether or not to click on any links provided or take any actions like buy or subscribe to the product or service.

Research from Harvard states that “Emotions constitute powerful and predictable drivers of decision making. Across different types of decisions, important regularities appear in the underlying mechanisms through which emotions influence judgment and choice.

Trigger words evoke and ignite emotions powerful enough to entice consumers into taking action. They make ‘calls to actions’ more effective.

Trigger words are often used in subject lines, headlines, or sub-headings by companies in email marketing to increase the open rate of emails.

Thus, using trigger words that would tug at your readers’ emotions is a sure shot means of aiding them along to taking decisions in your favor. This psychology has proven and is continually proving to be a successful marketing tactic.

It is important to recognize the pain and pleasure points of the target audience. Once companies do so, they can exploit the pain points for making consumers realize why a certain product is needed by them, and the pleasure points for inviting consumers in with the promise of a positive experience.

Types of Emotional Trigger Words – Definitions and Types

Trigger words can fall under a realm of broader classifications. Each set of trigger words target a different group of emotions.

1. Trust

Trigger words that evoke the emotion of trust have been shown to inculcate a sense of faith and belief amongst the consumers towards the brand. As for the brand, the use of trust-laden emotional words for headlines lends credibility to the brand. This is an important part of converting readers to buyers, boosting sales, and increasing the conversion rate.

A list of words that evoke a sense of trust is as follows –

• Absolutely
• Facts, Factually true
• Proven
• Scientific, Science-backed, Scientifically proven
• Faithful
• Foolproof
• Guaranteed
• Reliable
• Dependable
• Authentic, authenticity
• Reviews, Customer Reviews
• Verified
• Refund
• Warranty
• Safe
• Third-party tested
• Researched, Research-backed
• Evidence-based
• Pure

2. Anger/Frustration

Anger is a universal adhesive amongst consumers, and frustration, one of the biggest action takers. When a company uses words that evoke emotions that poke at the pain points of customers, they are more likely to take actions to resolve those pain points.

For example, if your marketing scheme manages to resonate with the reader on a pain point that has frustrated them for quite some time and you present your brand as the solution or the way out, the reader will be tempted to engage with the call to action” buttons.

Examples of trigger words that target anger/frustration are –

• Had enough?
• Don’t settle
• Tired
• Annoyed, Annoying
• Irritating
• Rage
• Furious, Infuriating, Fury
• Hate, Hatred
• Never again

3. Exclusivity

Humans are always on the lookout for the impression of feeling special. Making your target audience feel like they’re getting a special offer or are part of an important clique goes a long way.

A list of words for making consumers feel special is –

• Subscriber only
• Members only
• Limited access
• Limited edition
• Offer valid only for a time period
• Exclusive
• Elite
• Insider
• Restricted access
• Premium

4. Curiosity

Curiosity- Emotional Trigger Words

We’re curious beings by nature. If we’re presented with a product/service/commodity that we feel we don’t know enough about, the curious cat in us will naturally click on to find more, with our egos for knowledge egging us on.

Words that evoke emotion centered around curiosity are –

• Confidential
• Invitation only
• Unbelievable
• Private
• Classified
• Censored
• Secret

5. Urgency

Who amongst us hasn’t been guilty of hoarding items in our wish list or cart but not fully committing to actually make the purchase? If you’ve noticed, companies employ a technique of using trigger words psychology in order to evoke a sense of urgency amongst its customers that gently nudge them along into completing the purchase.

Examples of trigger words that do the same are –

• Few left
• While stocks last
• Last chance
• Limited time sale
• Flash sale
• Price going up
• Offer expires
• Hurry
• Act now
• Don’t miss out
• Deadline
• Once in a lifetime opportunity

6. Fear

Fear is a great motivator. Light a fire of fear in your target audience’s minds, tell them you can help them, and watch them convert into sales.

A list of trigger words that evoke fear are –

• Threat
• Anxiety
• Abuse
• Failure
• Steal, Stolen
• Horror
• Miserable
• Panic
• Dread

7. Pleasant Surprise

Pleasant Surprise

Who doesn’t love to be surprised? If you manage to convince your target consumers that they are in for a pleasant treat of a surprise, they will most definitely be more likely to become customers and boost your sales.

Words that promote this emotion are –

• Excited
• Awe, Awestruck
• Mesmerizing
• Spectacular
• Enchanting
• Spellbinding
• Terrific
• Remarkable

8. Health and Hope

The most prized possession we have is our health. Since time immemorial and especially more in recent times, there has been a rapid increase in the number of consumers aware of what’s good for their health. The promise of good health by using a company’s product is a great and return-giving pleasure point that companies often use.

Similarly, for brands, hope is an emotion that keeps on giving. If you manage to fill your audience with feelings of hope and positivity, they will be much more likely to take actions that support you.

List of such emotional trigger words is as follows –

• Treat
• Cure
• Better, Betterment
• Boost
• Energize
• Vibrance, Vibrant
• Empower, Powerful
• Overcome
• Undo
• Brighten, Bright

9. Attraction

Your main aim as a company is to make your brand seem more attractive to your consumers, in order to increase your conversion rate. One way to do so is by using emotional trigger words for attraction. These could include –

• Delicious
• Magnetic
• Exceptional
• Extraordinary
• Unprecedented
• Beautiful

10. Revenge

Revenge is a powerful emotion that makes people take action. Companies utilize this theme along the lines of “xyz positive change is the best revenge and our product/service can help you achieve the same”.

Remember, whatever action you encourage your readers to take under the guise of revenge should be a positive change.

The emotional trigger words that can ignite the emotion of revenge are –

• Reclaim
• Vindicate, Vindication
• Turn the tables
• Recoup
• Regain
• Payback
• Avenge

11. Love

There isn’t much that the promise of love or the feeling of love doesn’t make us do. Taking decisions that profit many a company is one such activity that can result from trigger words that evoke the emotion of love. For example –

Evoke the Emotion of Love

• Peace
• Joy
• Comfort
• Blissful
• Delightful
• Jubilant
• Happiness
• Togetherness

12. Sadness

Sadness unfortunately is another emotion that unites us all. Tugging at the heartstrings of sadness of audiences can urge them to take swift actions. Examples of trigger words that evoke sadness are –

• Grief
• Teary-eyed, Tears
• Sobbing
• Heartbroken
• Resentful
• Lovesick
• Shame

13. Anticipation

Waiting – a painful game. The feelings of pining are also poked and exploited often by companies to get customers to bow down and contribute to the company’s sales.

Examples of trigger words that fall under this category are –

• Yearning, to yearn for
• Longing, to long for
• Craving, crave
• Desire
• Enthusiasm
• Inspiring, to inspire

14. Disgust

Companies often use pain points to demonstrate to consumers how something that they’ve been tolerating should ignite a sense of disgust in them and that they should no longer settle for or tolerate the same. At this point, they usually introduce their brand is their way out. This is yet another powerful means of marketing.

Words that evoke disgust include –

• Outrageous
• Repulsive, Repellant, to repel
• Trashy, Trash
• Obscene
• Ridiculous
• Absurd

15. Sharing

These days, getting in the public’s minds is the most important. Consumers sharing your content with 10 people who are likely to translate into sales is perhaps at times even more beneficial than the one consumer becoming a customer. Hence, companies also use trigger words to encourage readers to share their content. These include –

• Tell us
• Share
• Promote
• Review
• Think
• Give us your take

16. Powerlessness

If companies target the feeling within consumers that the solution to a certain problem is unattainable, but show that their brand can actually offer the said solution, it is sure to have a bigger impact on readers.
Trigger words that target this sense of powerlessness include –

• Incapable
• Dependent
• Agony
• Helpless
• Surrender
• Paralyzed

17. Betrayal

Companies recognize that the feeling of betrayal or being falsely led on is a powerful emotional trigger word. Triggering the feeling of betrayal amongst readers is usually done in the headlines to grab their attention.

The word betrayal itself is an effective trigger word. Other emotional trigger words that evoke a sense of betrayal amongst the audience are –

• Deception
• Misled
• Conspiracy
• Misinformation
• Ploy
• Fleece
• Swindle

Wrap Up

Hence, different emotions can be targeted in varied ways in order to influence your readers to lend their attention, keep their attention held, and encourage them to interact with your calls to action.

We have established that emotions precede logic. This is exactly where trigger words come into the picture. They birth the emotional impact needed in readers to create a logical rationale for purchase.

Our 5 core emotions, i.e., joy, fear, sadness, disgust, and anger, offer the most returns and prove to be the most effective and powerful emotions when triggered. These are most often utilized by companies to their benefit with other categories of trigger words trailing not far behind.

Emotional Trigger Words FAQ:

1. What are common trigger words?

Common trigger words include words like –
• Free
• Sale
• Scientifically proven
• Limited time
• Experts say
• Tested
• Quick
• Discount
• Boost
• Cure
• Few left
• Proven
• Easy
• Discover

2. What are positive trigger words?

Positive trigger words include emotional words that resonate with readers in order to evoke positive emotions like hope, trust, surprise, attraction, love etc.

3. What are some powerful words?

Powerful words are those that carry with them a lot of conversion points or in other words, the most potential for increasing the conversion rate. Some examples of powerful words include –
• Free
• Amazing
• Simple steps
• Urgent
• Limited time
• Economical
• High quality, Good quality
• Limited offer

4. Which is an example of an emotional trigger?

Anything that stirs up our emotional response is a trigger. An example of an emotional trigger is evoking the feeling of anger in consumers by using words like ‘Don’t settle, tired, irritating, annoying, infuriating, hate’ etc. This allows companies to gain from the consumers’ anger towards problems that they have the solution for.

5. What words or phrases trigger a negative emotional response?

A negative emotional response could include feelings of anger, fear, despair, sadness, revenge, disgust etc. Examples of words that trigger such negative emotional responses are –
• Rage
• Never again
• Hatred
• Repulsive
• Outrageous
• Ridiculous
• Anxiety
• Failure
• Panic
• Horror
• Irritating etc.

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