The Greatest Selling Tool of All Time: Scarcity!

Guess what, I turn 25 years old today.

And the reason people give you birthday presents or even celebrate birthdays is for one reason.

If You Know That Reason...

... Then you can apply it to your e-mails, sales letters, products, everything, and it will increase response better than any 1-click upsell, forced continuity, free CD offer, 100% commission, or whatever goofy marketing fad is going around today.

My nephew JasonThe real reason you send people thank you cards, celebrate birthdays, buy one time offers... the reason it's 20 times easier to get a girlfriend when you're already dating some other chick is because of scarcity.

Scarcity is probably the ultimate reason you bought your house or car.  You had to make a bid now before someone else did.

Here's a Funny Story...

Lance and I recently ran a webinar course with 15 students who paid $497 each to get in.  Part of the weekly challenges were to run your own webinars.

These were small webinars we only promoted the afternoon before.  The average one had 17 attendees.

But the webinar with the biggest turnout (from Andy Erickson) had 62 people register and 35 people show up. Why?

I made a single post on a forum a few hours before saying we would only let 50 people in.  Nobody knew how to react to it.

Suddenly, They Wanted In!

Just last week I was at a week-long mastermind retreat that requires you to have a certain level of income to join.  Lance was my guest, and he "sort of" wanted in the mastermind, but as soon as he realized he couldn't get in, he REALLY had to get in!

How did I build my list? The exact same way.  I made forum offers over and over again saying: here's the price now, here's the price it will be by this date.  And I stuck to my word.

How do I get so many blog comments? Exact same way.  If I don't get 10 comments, this blog is going to disappear.  Suddenly it's not around forever.

How Can You Add Scarcity to Everything You Do?

It's simple... answer one or all of these questions on your squeeze pages, e-mails and sales letters:

  1. Price Justification: What's the reason why the price is so low right now?  (Even if "you" think it's a high price.)
  2. Change the Offer: How soon will you change the offer by removing bonuses or de-bundling the package?
  3. Price Increase: How long until your product costs twice as much?  (an actual set date)
  4. Expiration Date: How long until you close out this offer completely?

... And suddenly, the decision to buy becomes a no-brainer.

I split test stuff all the time and little changes, like the headline or a single word, make all the difference.

Recently I found out adding a SMALL logo to one of my web pages increased sales by 44.4 percent. That test gave me 18 extra sales at $47 even before the split test was over!

On a squeeze page, I increased opt-ins by 20 percent (tested with 97.5% accuracy) by REMOVING the subheadline.

You have a large population of prospects who are "just about" ready for you to push them over the fence. Adding scarcity is the best push you can give them.

It's takeaway selling.  If you don't act soon, you won't get this.

You Create Excitement Just By Saying "No."

The next time you offer anything... a free report, blog post, e-mail newsletter, special report, training course, DVDs, whatever… add an arbitrary number of copies that will be sold, or an arbitrary deadline when you'll take it off the market, and stick to it.

And the real reason why birthdays are so important is because you have a very limited number of them.

What's your favorite scarcity technique?  Comment below with your answer, and oh yeah, wish me happy 25th birthday as well.

Filed in: Copywriting

Comments (100)

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  1. Sahara says:

    Happy birthday dude!

    I do enjoy your work and your attitude
    and your energy…


  2. Britt Malka says:

    Happy birthday!

    How did you get such a cute son?

    My favourite scarcity technique is not something I plan on. It’s when something happens, and I just need a specific amount of money in a short time, like once I wanted to buy a product for $300, and I had to come up with the money in two days – from extra income! So I wrote my list with a great offer, told them why this offer was so great, and why it only lasted two days, and in fact, I made twice the money I needed.

  3. Robert Plank says:

    Britt, I love it when that kind of stuff happens! And we have all been there and succeeded at some point. I used that same strategy to make my first $25K month way back in 2007, when my average income at the time was only $5K-$10K per month.

  4. Annette says:

    Happy Birthday Robert!

    Look at what you have achieved at such a tender age! Many more happy years.

    Ps: Who is that child you are with? Did you kidnap him? I never knew you had a…

  5. Robert Plank says:

    That little guy is my nephew Jason, driving the fire truck I got him for his 1st birthday.

    I figured it was fitting since we’re talking birthdays, scarcity, and impulse buying stuff like cars.

  6. Kelly Ifrah says:

    bon anniversaire 😀

  7. Happy Birthday, Robert! Wow, you’re really young! =:)

    I like doing scarcity with physical products rather than digital — to me it seems more real, or justified. Example, I bought about a dozen USB thumb drives and put all my products on them — since there were only a dozen created, the scarcity was built in.

    For digital products I usually do a time-limited “pre-release” discount coupon. My list can get it now for a cheaper price because the sales letter isn’t finished, etc., but when launch day hits the coupon expires!

    Jay Jennings

  8. Robert Plank says:

    Jay, I agree, it’s easier to justify physical scarcity than digital scarcity. I had to do some retraining my list when I first started that.

    I had comments like, “Are there a limited number of electrons or something?” But my response was always: “I’m limiting it because I feel like it!” 🙂

  9. Haroun Kola says:

    Happy Birthday Robert

    I’m busy going through Fast Food Copywriting, and learning about the ideas on scarcity 🙂

    Have a great year

  10. Dave Doolin says:

    Happy Birthday Robert.

    I hope you are able to continue learning at this rate as you advance through your 20s, 30s, 40s and beyond. There is no reason not too.

    One day, you may find some whippersnapper barely out of diapers – in your mind – with something valuable to say.

    Listen to him. Or her.

    As a result of reading this post, I’ll be taking action tomorrow to advance my product to the next price level. If you don’t have 100 comments by then, I’ll leave another. Actually, I may just leave another with an update.

  11. Happy birthday Robert.

    I couldn’t agree more on the scarcity. It don’t scare kids, though 🙂

    Best regards

  12. Dave Doolin says:

    Limiting electrons, some rationale:

    1. Sell to only as many people as can be comfortably supported.

    2. Emphasize that the limitation reduces competition among purchasers.

    3. Time deadlines allow versioning of product. Take product off market so it can be updated.

    4. More?

    Ultimately, Robert’s answer “Because I feel like it” is best of all!

  13. Bob Stovall says:

    Another great blog post. Thanks.

    I’m late, but Happy Birthday there, Robert. I’m already practicing hair scarcity – and it DOES make the ones I’ve got left more valuable – at least to me! 🙂

  14. Happy Birthday!
    Now get out go do something fun…

    How’s this for scarcity?
    Your birthday is one day a year, you are now a quarter century old. Put a $20 on a random counter in a bar and tell the bartender to call me (I think EVERYONE on the net has my number)….

    I will then give the bartender my CC and I will do virtual birthday shots with you.. all you can handle.. 🙂

    Offer must be redeemed in the next 2 hours…

    Happy Birthday!

  15. Happy Birthday, Robert. 25th birthdays are even rarer… lol

    My favorite scarcity technique is people needing to qualify to get in… they want to check if they would… they do the test, and then they want in…

    A headline: Do you qualify to be my student? Test yourself here…

    Actually, I just came up with this idea… Do you like it? Please let me know.

    Lotta luv,

    Sophie (Speedy Gonzales) Benshitta

  16. Happy Birthday Robert!!! I am from Bolivia and I follow your materials. Thanks so much for your advice.

    Take care.

    Luis F. Valle

  17. Robert Plank says:

    Sophie, I do like that idea and I have seen it done like this: first, they take the test. Then they get a page that says you have to enter your e-mail address to find out how you scored on the test.

  18. Alex says:

    Happy Birthday Man!

    I got to say, I think the best scarcity is the Change Offer/Expiration date. Makes you realize you can only have that offer for a while.

    But the most important thing in that event is having a reputation for actually acting on it.

    So many products are saying, “We will remove this offer”, but never do.

    By the way I got to say I love the idea of putting a descending clock in sales letters, just showing how much time is left until the offer closes, like Jason did in the Two Sick bastards sales copy.

    Makes me afraid to open some of your offers because I would know I would fall for it ;).

  19. Jonathan says:

    Happy 25th Robert!

    Great post on scarcity… The next mini product I’m launching is going to be a dime-sale…


  20. Pamela says:

    Happy Birthday…I hope you are treated like a King today!! I’m just starting out in the world of internet sales/marketing…so I don’t have a scarcity technique yet…but as always great advise that I will incorporate to make sure my launch is fast and furious! Have a fantastic day!!!!!!!

  21. Darrel Hawes says:


    Great post.

    My favorite scarcity technique is simply saying you want to limit the number of people with access to your information.

    Obviously this only works with info marketing! (Although it probably wouldn’t work in EVERY info product market.)

    In markets like dog training for example, where folks are not really “competing” with one another, it wouldn’t make sense…

    … but in IM, make money at home, investing, dating, etc., it has a powerful appeal.

    – Darrel

  22. Dennis Wagoner says:

    Happy Birthday Young’un!

    My all time favorite scarcity tactic is the limited number of days the offer is good.

    Usually a three day offer.

    I like this method because I get to send emails with subtle reminders for the first couple of days, then a big announcement that today is it, and they best buy now or pay more/never get the chance again.

    I also let my list know I’ll be having the limited time offer several days in advance.

    Works pretty good for me.

    The best to you!

  23. AzSno says:

    Happy 25th Birthday Robert…

    Speaking of Scarcity, this is the “LAST” 25th birthday you’ll have, enjoy!

    I do quite a few “30 Minute” offers…In fact, I’m using it on my PLRBlockbuster site listed above. Since I learned this technique from you, it’s boosted my business exponentially…thanks!

    Have a “FANTASTIC” birthday today…



  24. Pamela says:

    Oh…and by the way Birthday Boy…you proved your point very well…Your “scarcity technique”…made me move to action in a hurry!

  25. My best Scarcity play was by accident. I launched a software package last year and by accident I removed the index page and replaced it with the sold out page after the first 24 hours. I found out the next day because people were upset and begging to get in.

    After that I opened it back up for 2 days and sold out.

    Happy Birthday.

    Talk soon,
    Charles Kirkland

  26. David Burch says:

    Happy Birthday! Take the day off (after sending a scarcity offer email, of course).

  27. Dax L'Amour, Ph.D says:

    Happy Birthday, My Friend!

    Hope the day is especially wonderful for you and yours.

    By the way, Thank You for all you do for the rest of us!


  28. Dane Morgan says:

    I’ve never used scarcity, but I will. I like the “only 100 people can comment on this post” concept.

    I might try that as a permanant feature on a blog and see what it does to comments.

    Happy birthday Robert.

  29. Hamant Keval says:

    Hello Robert

    Just popping in to ay a Big Happy Birthday to you.

    Pictures are wonderful of your cute son.
    Not you ! even though you are a spring chicken compared to most of us !

    Have a great day anyway


  30. Simon White says:

    Happy Birthday.

    I remember being 25, have a a great day!

  31. Stephen Dean says:

    Happy birthday man!

    I made a whole product on Digital Scarcity:

  32. Happy 25th Birthday!

    Exclusivity – limited number of slots / packages / whatever, is my favorite type of scarcity.

    Next would be the offer expiration.

    Right behind that would be the Price Increase.

    Exclusivity is better because it is a limit that cannot be overcome – and some uncertainty as to when the limit will be reached.

    Offer expiration is a hard limit, but the prospect can say “I’ll decide later, right before the offer expires.”

    The price increase is painful, but it is not a hard limit – all it takes is more money. 🙂


    P.S. I hope you take Lance up on his offer!

  33. Happy Birthday Robert,

    There is only one Robert with a 25th birthday on Sept 23. That’s scarcity. Expires at midnight.
    See you in Raleigh.

  34. Did you leave the comments at #24 so everyone would think they were comment number 25, or just me? 😉

    The best scarcity is real, not manufactured. If you can use “because …”, as Mr Cialdini teaches, you get a better response.

    Part of the reason my course just sold out is because there were limited seats left, and I gave a reason that the audience knew was true (and verifiable).

  35. Dan O'Connor says:

    Tick-tock, tick-tock…

    This message of birthday well-wishes will be valid for TODAY ONLY! Grab your limited edition of “Happy Birthday, Robert!” before midnight tonight or risk the possibility of being crushed by the weight of perpetual regret.

    No hypey sales tactic here.

    Come back just 1 second after midnight TONIGHT and… Poof!… this sincere wish of birthday happiness will have disappeared like an elusive blue and yellow striped unicorn galloping down a trail of pixie dust.

    Carpe Diem, Robert!


  36. Hello Robert,

    I confess (:p), I bought many of your products, for later reading, because of scarcity.
    Happy birthday, you have one of the few newsletters that I usually read.

    Best Regards,

    Nuno Alex

  37. Izzy says:

    Happy Birthday, Robert!

    Great twist on the closing this post after 99 comments… makes me NEED to comment.


  38. Jim Fridenmaker says:

    Happy Birthday Robert!

    Enjoy your day.


  39. Marcel says:

    Hey Happy Birthday Robert!

    Scarcity tactic, I been thinking about. Limiting a special discount to 1 day per week or 1 hour per day.

  40. Steve Frew says:

    Happy Birthday!

    My favorite scarcity tool has been the limited time discount coupon.


  41. Kevin Polley says:

    All I can say is I wish I was 25 again 🙂

    You keep coming out with great stuff and your work ethic is outstanding.

    Roll on that second million. Apparently it’s easier to get than the first.

    Happy Birthday Robert.


  42. Jérémy says:

    Happy Birthday Robert !!


  43. Fox says:

    Scarcity I think is one of the harder principles for many to employ because they’re afraid they’ll lose out on something. What if I limit to 100 and I actually have 200 that want to buy?
    On the other hand, it’s so easy to move someone when they know it’s the last one in the store. I have a post on that on my site.
    This is one of those tactics that doesn’t have to be used elegantly to work effectively.

    Personally, my most scarce thing I offer is my time. As you know by it being your birthday, you only have so much time left and we don’t know when it will stop.
    Enjoy your day and every scarce second from here out.

  44. Cindy says:


    (Along with everyone else) Happy Birthday! You have accomplished so much in such a short time. Just about the time I think that people younger than me (I am only 38) are showing signs of being lazy and expecting the world to just hand them life, I run into people like you. You work very hard for everything and provide tremendous value in all you do. Keep up the great work.

    We have used a couple of scarcity items. Things like Charter membership pricing for the first xxx number of people (Since it is not 100% yet). Right now we are using the “Last time this year” one for a workshop we are holding.

    Last week we had our first webinar (at your urging) and we only gave 2 days notice. So there was scarcity because it was on this day at this time and then we also said there was a limited number of slots. We had 38 people register in less than 48 hours and 25 of them actually signed on and attended (so needless to say we are sold on the webinar thing now:) )

    Anyway, have a great Birthday, be sure not to work too much. And quick take Lance up on his offer only 1.5 hours left…. 🙂


  45. Robert Plank says:

    Fox, I would rather leave a few buyers behind than trying to extract them all. If they want to buy then they’ll buy. You piss off the cheapskates who wanted to buy when the price was low at $1 but you don’t want those people on your list anyway.

    You can sell 100 copies at $30, close the offer and then re-open for 100 more copies at $50. People who bought in early still got a special deal.

    You could teach a live webinar for $500, then re-launch with the replays for $50 per week with no downloads and no live interaction. Early adopters still got a better deal.

    You could do a bundle and offer 2 products in 1 package for $70, then close the offer and launch each of those products for $50 each.

    You get the idea. You can always re-open later with a different offer.

  46. Kevin Koop says:

    Happy Birthday Robert! (wow, you’re all of 25 ;- )

    I agree wholeheartedly with this post… scarcity is
    a great motivator and one that can be employed in
    so many different ways.

    I commonly use it when marketing products as an affiliate (like… the first 20 to buy through my
    link gets this cool “widget”) and am using a bit of
    time-related scarcity on my new site, right now as I write this.

    Have a great day and a blessed year,

  47. Ghazal Alvi says:

    Happy Birthday Robert!

    Nice post and btw, my scarcity technique is I only allow
    certain no. of clients/customers per month.

    It’s really worth visiting here.

    Have a nice day!!

  48. Robert Plank says:


    Perfect! Is that for coaching? The cool thing about that is you can do an e-mail promotion saying something like 2 slots have opened up… the price for those seats used to be $500 for the month but now they’re $600 for one month of coaching.

  49. Brian M* says:

    Well it certainly makes sense.

    I’ve had an opportunity to try it once, but haven’t been able to capitalise on it, but I daresay that it’s the wrong product.

    Happy Birthday Robert,

    Here’s to the next 25 LOL


  50. John Taylor says:

    Happy Birthday Robert. You still have a long way to catch up.. but you’re heading in the right direction to become eligible for the old farts clob. 😉

    Scarcity.. I like to limit the number of people who qualify for a specific bonus. My tests show that the right bonus combined with a limited offer can increase conversions.

    Have great day.


  51. Sean says:

    My idea of scarcity is to use it sparingly so it stays effective and doesn’t become a cliche.

    Good stuff Robert. Happy Birthday.

  52. Happy birthday, Robert.

    You’re right, people get bent out of shape when they turn a milestone birthday, like 30 or 40 or especially the higher numbers and they start acting on the basis of the fear of running out of birthdays.

    Basically, age is mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter. 🙂

    In any case, the scarcity tactic plays upon peoples’ irrational fears and perceptions of lack. It’s a very effective selling/marketing strategy for that reason. One of its many problems is that it’s been used to death and it really only works well with people who haven’t seen it enough times before, or are simply clueless.

    Having been playing this game now for several years, I’ve gone from the clueless newbie who reacted to scarcity by buying whatever it was if it seemed even remotely useful to understanding that no matter what the seller says, the product will most likely show up again at the same or better price later on. If I don’t need it right now, I don’t buy it. If I truly need it later on, I’ll buy it at whatever price it’s at, and if it’s not available, somebody else will probably have come out with a similar or better product in the meantime.

  53. Here’s a rare birthday wish for you.

    Yom Huledet Sameach

    – that’s happy Birthday in Hebrew.

    I like dime sales for scarcity. The price is NOW. You want it, you buy it now, or it simply won’t be available at this price again. Not exactly scarce, more like totally not-available.


  54. Whew – glad you said it was your nephew, Robert – thought you were holding out on us!

    Happy Birthday! I’m sure you’re working your tail off (is today the 52 video day?) but I hope you’ll take a few hours off to celebrate – knowing you that won’t be a problem!

    Scarcity (great post, BTW) – I’m actually tryining it on my current offer at JVsMadeSimple – we’ll be raising the price (essentially doubling it) after the live webinar tonight and I’ve made that very clear in my emails – although now that I think about it, not sure it’s on the sales page, since we just decided to do it yesterday. Always something else to do.

    Enjoy your birthday – I gotta go change a sales page!


  55. Happy B-day – scarcity? Nothing like a birthday to cause “scare-city” – as though time is passing and there’s no getting it back once its gone –

    Always appreciate your point of view. –
    Wishing you many happy returns of this day –

  56. my favorite new scarcity technique is the value add take-away.
    if you choose this NOW then you get this, that and the other added. but if you wait to make a choice, then bonus package deal goes away.
    thanks and take care
    bryan Bliss
    Happy birthday bro
    we will celebrate next time we meet.
    whats coming up on your travel plans and which events will you be attending?
    Hope to catch up soon

  57. Christian says:

    This is an awesome explanation of how to leverage the value of scarcity in your offerings. It’s a sales fundamental. It’s crazy how effective it is, and how little it’s done at all in internet marketing…and even when it’s done, it’s done unconvincingly.

    It’s simple, which makes it also simple to screw it up. thanks for reminding me to apply this to my new site. you are the man, man 🙂

  58. Doug says:

    Happy Birthday Robert!

    Couple of B-Day facts for you:
    1) You just completed your 25th trip around the sun.
    2) If average lifespan is 75 years, you just hit middle age!

    I picked up your Exit Rescue plugin yesterday, you have given me some excellent ideas here for putting it to use with some scarcity tactics.

    Enjoy your Day,

  59. Stu McLaren says:

    Happy Birthday Robert…

    The best scarcity technique is when people actually see the number decreasing in real time.

    For example…

    I was in the grocery store yesterday. They had a big sale on some Captain Crunch cereal (and I love cereal).

    I saw the price was $2 off so I grabbed a box and continued shopping.

    Then as I was walking around I thought “you know what, that is a really good deal and I should probably grab another box (or 2) before they are all gone”.

    Sure enough, when I went back there was a couple people looking like they were ready to duke it out over the last box! LOL

    Someone said it above, sometimes scarcity works because people are afraid they might miss out on something.

    So they may not even want it, but they’ll get it anyway “just in case”.

    The BIG key to all this working though is to be firm with whatever deadlines or # you set.

    Nothing irritates me more than “fake scarcity”.

    Anyway great post and HAPPY BIRTHDAY.

    All the best.


  60. Robert Plank says:

    Oh yeah Stu, back when I ran dimesales (before I built up my list to where I wanted it) I added some Ajax code so people would actually see the price increasing.

    During a launch, they would see the order button near the top of the page, but as they continued reading, the price increased before their eyes. I forget what kind of numbers that launch did, but it was something like 200 sales in the first hour just from my list, with no affiliates and no advertising.

  61. Brad says:

    Hey Robert,

    Happy B-Day for starters. Love the LeadGen WP plugin you are selling on a WSO.

    Anyways, the scarcity idea is great. The key (and you hit on this well) is it has to be believable. Scarcity is so abused and when it’s abused it has the opposite effect (reduces sales).

    The key to a double-edged sword is to always be on the right side of it!

    Great article and Cheers on Your B-Day!

    Brad Spencer

  62. Janis Miller says:

    ♪♫♪ Happy Birthday to you ♫♪ Happy Birthday to you ♪♫ Happy Birthday, Dear Robert ♫♪ Happy Birthday to you ♪♫♪ Wishing you an amazing birthday, Robert!

  63. Rodney says:

    Totally awesome how you made an original blog post out of a commonly spoken about idea.

    I run into people all the time saying “It’s all been done before.”

    Well, maybe the basic principles stay the same, but people like you will always come up with new ways to apply those principles.


    Oh yeah and Happy Birthday!

  64. Hey Mr. Action!

    Happy birthday!

    Great point about scarcity. I’m actually on a training call right now, and normally I’d wait until it was over, before forgetting to follow the link in your email.

    Of course you applied two principles in your email. The obvious one was scarcity, but how many people noticed technique #2: curiosity?

    What an evil combination! Couldn’t resist that!

    Thanks for making the point. I’ll be taking a closer look at my copy-writing and email writing to use scarcity, and curiosity too when ever possible.

    Have a good one Mr. Action!

  65. Robert Plank says:

    Mr. Drupal,

    I’m on that same training call right now with Chris, Marianna, and George.

    Curiosity in e-mails is the best. Especially when it means you don’t have to write as much.

    Glad you learned something…

  66. Jeff Bode says:

    Happy Birthday Robert,

    I turned 25 a little over a year ago… wait till your 26,
    you better enjoy 25 you only have 364 more days!

    My favorite use of scarcity (haven’t used it much), price increase after getting a certain # of testimonials.

    …I need to start adding more scarcity!

    Anyways you better go have some fun, 26 will be here before you know it!

  67. Drupal!!!

    @Robert, I am on that same call… watching this Cool Timer go tick… tick… tick…


  68. Keisha says:

    Happy Birthday Robert!

    My birthday is Sunday, Sept. 27th-although I am a few years older…30 something! Maybe that’s one of the reasons I found your style/delivery so appealing, especially since I’m not a programmer. Then again, it’s probably the copywriting! Keep up the good work. I’ve learned a lot in the short time I’ve been following you.

  69. Happy Birthday! I love your products — Action Pop-up, Action Comments, WP Sales Letter…Keep up the good work!

  70. Joachim Klein says:

    Happy Birthday, Robert 🙂

    As a newbie in (german) internet marketing, I still don’t have a favorite scarcity-technique. Maybe increasing the price is one method I would choose.

    I find your work very inspiring, particularly your PHP-tricks.

    Keep it up!

    Best regards from Aachen, Germany.
    Joachim Klein

  71. Aaron Dwyer says:

    Hi Robert

    Happy birthday mate.

    Sending you some birthday cake in the mail from Australia.

    I’m also turning 25 + 10 next wednesday. 🙂

    Oh and adding a countdown timer to my takeaway date on my offers is my favourite scarcity tactic.


  72. Jason Parker says:

    Happy birthday Super Robert!

    Have a good time today my friend! And stay away from chicks who have atoms apples.

    (Looks like we’re the same age.)

  73. Don Morris says:

    Happy Birthday, Robert! And stop making those 100 comment slots more scarce by using them yourself! 🙂

  74. Happy Birthday Robert!

    I recently celebrated the 36th anniversary of my 25th birthday!

  75. Rob Gaz says:

    Robert – Hey,

    Congrats on your birthday. 25 is a cool — had some good times when I was 25…phew! that takes me back!

    Another thing, enjoyed this post.

    Thanks and happy birthday.


  76. Max says:

    Happy Birthday Robert! from Argentina the best for you.


  77. John Collins says:

    Hi Robert –

    Happy 25th Birthday!

    Scarcity works. But for me not all the time. It does when I buy from you. I’ve been around and know when you say it’s over it’s over. At the same time I buy because I see something as useful and would have bought regardless of scarcity.

    If I don’t know the person screw’em. I don’t get excited or act strictly on scarcity. If fact for the most part I just delete emails the say dime sale or limited time or you got to be fast or if you are already too late. I wasn’t always like that but now I just turn off my emotion and skip all the hype text and focus on the product or offer.

    If there is a countdown timer that say gives you 24 hrs or more that doesn’t bother me and I might even return and buy. When I see I’m being rushed. Like you have 90 seconds, they just lost a customer.

    I joined a site once and it said only 500 will ever have access to this. Well about a week later there were over 700 members and the last time I bothered to go there over 1100. With a product or license purchase only the seller knows for sure.

    With you Robert, I’ve always seen you do what you say you will do. You gained my respect and trust.

    So with that said. Robert have a AWESOME FREAKIN BIRTHDAY! 🙂

  78. Happy Birthday Robert,

    Yes you are so right. Scarcity is such a big factor in so many things in life.

    It becomes even more prominent when you are into your 70s as I am.

    Enjoy your day.


  79. Hi Robert,

    Congratulations, are you sure you’re only 25?
    How did you get where you are so young?
    Thanks for all the tips about scarcity.
    I’d like to say I’m not posting on my blog until I get 10 comments like you do, but it might mean I don’t post very often..


  80. Ken says:

    Hi Robert,
    Many happy returns. Oh to be only 25 again. The scarcity of my hair is my biggest problem these days – lol.

    From a business perspective I find limiting the price and the either the length of sale or number of copies sold works best, but if you use these tactics you need to make sure that you follow through. You may loose a few sales the first few times you do it but then people get to know that you will do what you say.

    All the very best


  81. SeoBlog says:

    Hi Robert,
    You are one of the leading lights in IM today, and it’s hard to believe you are only 1/4 way through your 1st Century!
    Your mind is very alert, and the pace which you display in your video demonstrations is veritably dynamic.
    I have a hard job keeping up. I’m one of these slow guys.
    So take a bit of time to relax on your birthday – rest and be thankful and lay of the Crack!

  82. Martie Tamashiro says:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY ROBERT!!!! Isn’t this the date I guessed???;) I hope you have an awesome day! We’ll have to celebrate in Vegas….have fun.

  83. Tim Warren says:

    Happy Birthday Robert!

    Terry Dean taught me to use scarcity to motivate myself.
    I hit 25 a little over 25 years ago. So it’s probably more apparent to me that I’ve only got a limited number of days left. So I better hurry up and get everything done I want to get done.

    Enjoy Your Day,


  84. “Robert Plank is a remarkable young man”
    – George Callens

    I guess you’re enjoying that training call more than average, Robert!

    PS to Lance – Hi there! Great meeting you last week.

    PPS I still use Drupal, but now I use WordPress even more.

  85. Fox says:

    Robert, I agree completely. I realize the “What if I limit 100 and get 200 buyers?” question didn’t come across correctly. I’d rather limit the number and know I sold out with the help of this principle than not limit with quantity or time and risk not selling as many.
    Every persuasion principle applied doesn’t add to the power in a linear fashion, it increased the persuasion power in an exponential manner.
    Have fun.

  86. Robert,

    Wishing you a fun-filled, loving, happy, tremendous, adventerous, exciting, inspiring, silly, goofy, and blessed birthday and for the year ahead brother!

    Many Blessings,
    Los Angeles, CA

  87. David Hunt says:

    Happy Birthday Robert!

    I’m in your latest class partly because of scarcity because it also meant some exclusivity because you would not be teaching these techniques to 1,000’s of people, and we could get a little personal attention.

    It irks me royally when I open a 3 day old email that says some deal will expire at midnight 2 days ago, and when I go there the deal is still up. It also amazes me though when people actually do stick to their limits,whether it’s when an offer expires or class size. You do learn though who actually does set limits and you will be quicker to respond next time.

    Best wishes again. As many have said, you won’t have another 25th birthday or 25th year. This is life and not a dress rehearsal. We may get similars to’s but we don’t get real do-overs.

  88. audre says:

    Happy Birthday, Robert! Enjoy the day and your 25th year!

    Yep, scarcity works. The 100 post limit got me here:)

    I use scarcity to create special list-member only prices for the PLR articles and reports that I write. Join the list, you get first notice on fresh new products, and discounts for the first few days a new PLR product is released. It’s a win-win, since joining the list is free!

  89. Paul L says:

    You’re right Robert. The key is to stick to it, otherwise you lose integrity. Happy 25, may God bless you with the desires of your heart.

  90. More curiosity here …

    I’ve been watching this thread to see what happens, and how quickly it gets filled up. I never do that normally.

    Also, I’m wondering if you’ll cut it off at 100 comments (including yours and the three I’ve left so far) or cut it off at 100 commenters (which would be fair, but far too much work to actually sit there and monitor, unless you’ve developed a WP plugin to do that – which actually isn’t a bad idea).

    Commenting as a spectator sport – would have thought?

  91. Bill Davis says:

    Happy birthday, man!

  92. Neal says:


    You never cease to amaze me. I’m working on my first membership site and am invoking scarcity by having only member per geographic region. So far, the survey results seem like the market will respond positively to this offer.

    The real test will be when the actual offer is made.

    Keep up the great work and Congrats on turning a quarter of a century!


  93. Happy Birthday, Robert! Good article on scarcity. Strange how that works…

  94. Gail Fernley says:

    Hi Robert,
    Happy Birthday and especially for reaching the quarter century mark! My step-son Michael turned 25 at the end of August this year, too. Ahhhh, to have the energy of a 25-year-old again… what memories…
    Anyhow, I think the price scarcity is the most effective for me, from a prospect/customer/buyer point of view… As someone else pointed out above, the time factor just doesn’t cut it all the time because you CAN still see those offers way past their deadlines, which makes subsequent offers you get less potent and/or believable.
    I signed up for your VST2.0 early, I might add, because 1) I wanted to do something with you and Lance (because of previous relationship with Fladlien), and 2) because of the scarcity of price factor, I could save the most $$$ by getting in on the ground floor, so to speak… IT WORKED ON ME!

    Have a good and SAFE 25th, Robert.

    Take care, Gail

  95. Christy says:

    Happy Birthday Robert! I love seeing how quickly you create & promote your own products. Hope you have a fun bday and a great year ahead.

  96. Tony Hayes says:

    Hey Robert,
    Happy Birthday, hope you have a good one.
    You are one of the few i would buy almost any product from, however the scarcity thing does irritate me slightly.
    It happened to me recently with your own video product and i could not justify spending hundreds more on the product than it was available for earlier.
    I think with low cost products it works well, but when you get into the hundreds …well, i just cant allow myself to feel so ripped off to pay hundreds more than the starting price.
    Hope it helps, its meant as constructive, not having a dig but it was something i found myself pondering a few times since that offer got away from me:)
    All The best!

  97. Happy Birthday and many,many thanks. You and Flads are the reason I started a membership site and am increasing my online income.

  98. Happy b’day Robert! =)

    And you’re absolutely right. Scarcity is one of the most powerful driving forces for instant action. The minute people find out they can’t get something is when desire hits a peak… the trick is to not over-do it and to stick to your deadlines so the technique does not lose power with your list.

    Miguel Alvarez

  99. Ron says:

    Happy Birthday Robert!

  100. Robert Plank says:

    All right guys I’ve hit 100 comments so I’m closing up the ability to leave comments on this post.

    Did you see how well scarcity worked? I didn’t even have a reward… just announcing the offer was closing soon got me 10 times as many comments as I would have had otherwise.

    100 comments in 3 hours… thanks again!

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