Cashvertising by Drew Whitman – Book Summary

Cashvertising by Drew Whitman
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Today we are going to speak about the advertisement, the thing which is present everywhere but never given a brief thought about it. The book cashvertising speaks about various psychology experiments that are carried out by psychologists and Copywriters.

The author Drew tries to bring in the lights on the science behind the advertisements. The experiments ranging from which color gains the maximum reader’s interest in whether a copy should be a short one or the long one.

What Do People Really Want ?? 

The main goal of advertising to make readers take action. There are several ways through which this can be achieved. There are skilled consumer psychologist routinely

consult with ad agencies to help them construct ads that powerfully affect consumers on a psychological, even subconscious level.

With the help of advertising, the drew in his book cashvertising mentions as follows

  • Better understand how to satisfy your customers.
  •  Influence more people to buy.
  • Get your quality products into more people’s hands.
  •  Help add more satisfaction to their lives.

“ Advertising is only evil when it is advertising the evil “

– David Ogilvy 

Humans are biologically programmed for the following things 

  • Survival, enjoyment of life, life extension.
  • Enjoyment of food and beverages.
  • Freedom from fear, pain, and danger.
  • Companionship.
  • Comfortable living conditions.
  • To be superior, winning, keeping up with the Joneses.
  • Care and protection of loved ones.
  • Social approval

When advertisements are created on these factors they tap into human psychology and can be used to influence the audience to change into consumers. Let’s understand desire, It’s a type of tension you feel when a need isn’t met. If you’re hungry, for example, the tension to eat arises and the desire for food.

Tension ——–> Desire ——> Action to Satisfy the Desire

Copies are written descriptively that they create a mental image in the minds of users by helping visual words. Then the persuasion begins through the benefits of having the products which lead to creating a strong desire to take action.

Eg – Go to the kitchen, open the oven, and pull out the freshest, crispiest, most delicious hot pizza you’ve ever eaten. Go on, cut yourself a big, hearty slice

The Principles of Consumer Psychology 

The Fear principal for cashvertising

Fear sells. It motivates. It urges. It moves people to action. It drives them to spend money. But why does it work? In a word: stress. Fear causes stress. And stress causes the desire to do something. Missing a big sale causes the stress of loss. What’s more, if you create too much fear, you could actually scare someone to inaction.

The Band Wagon Effect 

The well-known Hierarchy of Human Needs pyramid, the need to belong is third only to our physiological needs. People want to be part of the group that they would aspire to be and which share the same values and ideas.

Consumer’s purchase is based primarily on his or her sense of belonging, and not entirely on the merits of your product. The need for group membership is a strong psychological drive and in its pursuit.

This strategy requires that you link your product to a certain societal group, while often alienating others. This can be done in two ways, either by 

(1) closely associating your product with the target group through advertising that specifically appeals to the attitudes and values of that group

 (2) disassociating your product from other groups within society, in order to make it appear more accepted, or, in the cases of younger audiences, simply more “cool.”

Put at least equal effort into telling your prospects how buying your product makes them (aspirational), keeps them (associative), or helps them show the world that they’re not a part of a particular group (dissociative).

Evidence – Sell Me the Facts 

The Book cashvertising tells us that people buy from you when they believe what you are selling is of greater value than the dollars they need to exchange for it.

They all want to know what they’re going to get out of the deal. They all want to know the answer to the big question, “What’s in it for me?” or the acronym, “WIIFM.” Until they know the WIIFM, they’re not only hesitant to make the deal but also make the purchase.

One great, proven way is by offering persuasive evidence.” Any factual statement, object, or opinion not created by a source that is used by that source as support” (Reinhard, 1988). More simply, evidence can be facts, figures, testimonials, endorsements, research, charts, videos.

evidence also creates a positive impression of your company as one that offers “legitimate” This taps into readers’ psychology a powerful mental shortcut called heuristics.

Repetition & Redundancy 

Quote on Advertisement in cashvertising
Quote on Advertisement in Cashvertising

That’s the saying of the world of advertising. In marketing repeating your message not only helps break down walls of disinterest but with each repetition, your ad also gets exposed to those who may not have noticed it the last time.

 Each repetition of your message, your audience naturally grows more familiar with your product and company. This helps in acceptance and strengthening, an affinity begins to develop. They, in essence, begin to feel comfortable with you. This comfort leads to greater trust, which opens the door to the sale

Can repetition be bad? Possibly. Research suggests that there’s an optimum level at which repetition is effective, but that beyond this level it can lead to frustration and consumer “turn-off ” (Petty and Cacioppo,1979). Advertising aims to create marginal differences in consumer attitudes and perceptions.

Ad Agency Secrets of Cashvertising

Coming to apart from consumer psychology there is also Ad agency secrets which have been developed by years of experiments like the great David Ogilvy and some others to name on. This includes using the type of text to use to coupon and tweaking every aspect of advertisement to get the maximum results.

Long Vs Short Copy 

There has been a decades-long battle between “ Long Vs Short Copy” and author Drew ends the debate in his book. The author quotes his mentor which clears the doubt.

Gary Halbert, “Copy can never be too long, only too boring!”

A copy should not be written to fill up space or to impress people with your vocabulary. But do write enough to inform, build desire, convince, and motivate people to take action. The old expression, “the more you tell, the more you sell” is true…if you tell it right

The more ways you justify the purchase of your product, the more likely you’ll influence people to buy. A long copy satisfies both parties. Ms. Long gets all her details. Mr. Short can stop reading whenever he wants to. conducted several tests to see what impact copy length has on a Website’s conversion rate. Results: Long copy outperformed short copy in all three of their tests.

The Psychology of Price 

Odd-even pricing theory says that prices ending in odd amounts such as 77, 95, and 99 suggest greater value than prices rounded up to the next whole dollar. 

 Psychologists say that (1) fractional pricing suggests that the seller has calculated the lowest possible price, thus the odd number, and (2) we ignore the last digits rather than mentally rounding up. Doing so allows us to justify a purchase that may be teetering on the threshold of affordability.

Psychological pricing isn’t a random game of picking numbers out of a hat, it’s a well-researched topic with great implications for your bottom line.

Psychology of Colour  

Cashvertising book mentions on of the article in the American Journal of Psychology entitled “The Effect of Color on Apparent Size and Weight,” psychologists Warden and Flynn ran some tests. They put eight boxes—all the same size—in a glass display case. They had people randomly look at each box, in varying order, and asked them to rank the boxes according to how much they thought they weighed. Here are the results, from lightest to heaviest

Ranking of Box respective of colour
Ranking of box respective of colour

Because of its power to not only draw attention but also alter perception in ways that even the experts can’t explain, ad agencies are hypersensitive to how they use color in their ads and packaging.

Colors—if strongly associated with other products—can also confuse. In the beverage industry, for example, Coca-Cola “owns” the color red. When Berni Corp. designers changed Canada Dry’s sugar-free ginger ale from red to green and white, sales shot up more than 25 percent. The red can had made consumers think “cola.”

Establish Your Unique Selling Proposition 

When people can’t distinguish you from your competition, they have no reason to prefer you. And your goal in business is to have people prefer your product, to choose you over everyone else offering the same or a similar thing. 

The truth is, most people don’t care much about these commodity products. They don’t stand out. They blend in with other brands.

Think! What interesting story can you tell people about your product or service? How can you educate them? Be sure your product or service is one of excellent quality, or you may educate your potential buyer away from you!

Sometimes developing your USP requires that you do things differently, not just develop a hot tag line. Just saying you’re an expert doesn’t make you one. Your positioning should reflect what’s true about you.

Not only can you position your entire business, but you can also position your offer on the products and services. Unique selling proposition puts clear—not vague—pictures in your head. And when you do this, you have a stronger hold on your readers’ attention. They’re more engaged.

Ex-Work from Home and Turn Your E-Mail Into Big Profits!
Better version – 19-Year Old College Kid Discovers Clever Way to Persuade People to Send You Money Via PayPal

Both convey the same message but one mentions the unique selling point which makes it more enticing for the reader.

Battling Human Inertia 

The Cashvertising book mentions that No matter how slick a salesperson, no matter how beautiful an ad, if they don’t cause people to take action, they’re both a lousy investment. An ad that only informs and doesn’t move people to buy is like a salesperson who can’t close. Human inertia is the resist for any human to take action.

Hence taking action for the reader should be seamless and easy. Less the steps involved, it will be easy for the reader to take action.

Getting action requires two steps: (1) Make it easy to act, and then (2) ask for action.

people are hypersensitive to exerting themselves, and they do whatever they can to avoid effort, as advertisers it would be wise for us to make buying as easy as possible. Telling your prospects guiding step by step to order the product or service.

 The Time Scarcity 

People need to be motivated to take action on instruction. You do it by creating the perception of scarcity with powerful deadlines. The absence of a deadline conveys that your offer is always available. Advertising is persuasion, and the most critical time to persuade is when you’re asking for action.

Always feature deadlines to discourage response-killing human inertia. Eg – Supplies Are Strictly Limited

The Power of Questions 

Drew author of cashvertising book mentions ask question. What kind of question? any kind It causes your prospects to desire the answer. So what happens? They continue reading to find out the answer. Why? Because it works like a lure to help me capture greater readership. Using it in headlines.

According to neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) proponents, questions create what’s called an open loop in the reader’s brain. According to neuro-linguistic programming (NLP), proponents’ questions create what’s called an open loop in the reader’s brain. Want an

example? (Note the open-loop just created.) Do you want to know one simple technique that will triple your coupon response with no additional cost or effort? Did you catch your own response?

The hypothesis is that once the open loop is installed, the brain will continue to search for information in order to close the loop. Asking questions keeps everyone alert because it acts like mini “pop quizzes that help keep listeners on their toes.”


This book makes us understand advertising is equally science as equal as creativity. Cashvertising uncovers how the psychology of consumers can be tapped in to make effective sales and marketing campaigns. But all the explanations are backed with the scientific research and study conducted.

In all this book clears the common misunderstanding and highlights the grey areas in the world of marketing and how some companies exploit it. As a reader from the non-advertising world, you can also gain understanding which will make these tactics ineffective on you.

Book Recommended
The book cashvertising should be read by individuals who make living by copywriting. People working in advertising agency to understand the common mistakes and things that can be optimised to make more efficient sales.

One-Line Take-Away

  • Advertising has a scientific approach equally important as creativity
  • If the basics of advertising are not used then even the complex strategies won’t work 
  • Advertising is understanding your customer and talking to them in the same language 

SCORE – 6/10




Roopesh Bhosle is an author at Hackedwits and writes on summary for books from Business and Finance. A Project Manager at day and content writer at night. Love to learn new things, to connect dots in life. Connect with me on LinkedIn for collaboration on project or Guest Post

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1 Response

  1. October 11, 2020

    […] is the marketing psychology that the advertiser uses to lure people to make purchases. Also on the other end of the spectrum […]

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