What Is A Tripwire?

Taylor Bunkers
By Taylor Bunkers

If you’re a digital marketer, odds are you’ve heard the word ‘tripwire’, but you may not know exactly what is it, what it does, and why it’s beneficial. In this article we will be defining what a tripwire is and how it can be successful in earning an initial customer acquisition.

Defining Tripwires

A tripwire is an irresistible, low priced offer that’s sole purpose is to convert an audience into customers. This small offer helps accelerate the buyer’s journey by letting customers dip their toes in without having to make a big purchase.

Audience members who are subscribed to your list might not be interested in your core offer even if you have given them value and nurtured the relationship. This is where tripwires come into play. The core offer may seem too expensive for that audience member or they don’t see the value in that product.

Since a tripwire is low in price people are more likely to give it a try.

Then, once they see the value in that product they will be more likely to purchase the core offer. When an audience member purchases a tripwire it shows commitment. It shows that they were interested enough in your product to give you their credit card information.

Related: What Is a Lead Magnet?

Below is a classic example of a tripwire. They are offering a book to customers for just the price of shipping and handling. You’ll see this type of tripwire a lot as it is a low barrier to entry for a tangible, valuable item.

It is important to remember that the goal of utilizing a tripwire is not to make money, but to turn leads into first time customers. Then, once you capture those customers they are more likely to continue to purchase with your company. According to DigitalMarketer.com, “People who purchased tripwires were 10 times more likely to purchase their core offer.” That is a pretty convincing statistic in favor in utilizing tripwires in your marketing funnel strategy.

Pro Tip: You shouldn’t use a tripwire right out of the gate. It is first necessary to use a lead magnet to capture emails. Once you have that email list you can promote your tripwire offer to your subscribers to try and turn them into customers.

Components Of A Tripwire

A tripwire can’t just be any offer. There are certain attributes that separate a successful tripwire from one that will not convert your leads. A tripwire needs to have a high actual value as well as a high perceived value. If people don’t think your tripwire offer has value they won’t buy it.

Related: How to Deliver Value at Every Stage of the Customer Journey

The same goes for having a high actual value. If they purchase the offer and then the product/service is not of worth, they will not continue along the buyer’s journey. Additionally, a tripwire needs to be useful and connect with the core offer, or sometimes called a splinter offer.

Importance Of A Splinter Offer

What is a splinter offer exactly? Well, think about your core product and how it is made up of different parts. What a successful tripwire does is take one of those components of your core offer and promote it as a separate offering. So basically, you are splintering off a piece of your core product or service.

For example, if you were selling an online workout class membership, you would take one of those classes and offer it to your audience for a discounted price. This takes away the fear of investing a lot of money in a product you’re not sure will work. Instead, a tripwire gives people the opportunity to try and product or service at a lower price.

Once those people see the value in that offering, the trust is built and they can justify spending the big bucks on the core offer.

What’s great about a splinter offer is that you can continue to splinter your core offer and test what works best.

Types Of Tripwires

There are many different types of tripwires you can test. Some of these include a book, report, webinar, free or paid trial, or a software product. Remember, as stated above, the tripwire needs to connect to your core offer. For example, if your core offer is an online workout membership, you wouldn’t want the tripwire to be a book about cooking. For the best results, follow the strategy of splintering your core offering and testing those components with your audience.

Related: What Is a Marketing Funnel?

Overall, a tripwire can be an extremely beneficial addition to your current marketing strategy. This marketing tactic can help expedite the buyer’s journey by turning your leads into first time customers. And because of their low price, people are more likely to try it. If you haven’t tried a tripwire in your funnel strategy now is the time. Test it and let us know how it worked for your company.

Taylor is a Content Marketing Account Manager at Power Digital. Originally from Oakland, CA she moved down to San Diego for college to pursue her love of marketing. From experience working with large brands like Kaiser Permanente to working with smaller E-Commerce clients, she is here to take your content strategy to the next level!