One of the most important parts of marketing is being able to convince leads to take the plunge and become customers. This can be difficult, of course, since many people are naturally hesitant to commit to a purchase if they believe they can hold off until later.

To get around this reluctance to strike now, you can play on your audience’s Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO). This is a psychological phenomenon that can cause people to act in the moment, rather than putting something off until later. To encourage it, you simply have to play up your offerings’ exclusivity or limited nature.

In this article, we’ll look at some successful (and not so successful) FOMO marketing strategies. We’ll also demonstrate how you can implement FOMO in your popups, using the Popup Maker plugin. Let’s get started!

An Introduction to the Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO)

A Flash Sale From Jumia That Shows A Sold Out Item And Two Limited Products.
Flash sales, such as this example from Jumia, are a perfect way to implement FOMO marketing strategies.

The term Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO) was first coined in 1996 and has since become a frequently-used buzzword in the marketing industry. You may have even come across it before. In short, FOMO refers to the apprehension that you might be losing out on positive experiences.

This might not seem like a particularly earth-shattering concept. However, the fact is that FOMO can be an incredibly powerful sensation. You might not even be consciously aware of it, even if it affects your behavior every day.

For example, do you check your social media feed or email several times an hour, just to make sure you haven’t missed anything interesting or important? That’s FOMO in a nutshell.

FOMO is the apprehension that you might be losing out on positive experiences. Click To Tweet

Naturally, playing on customer’s FOMO has become a widely-used marketing strategy. However, due to how it deliberately plays on a type of anxiety, it’s sometimes perceived as manipulative. This reputation might make you think that all FOMO marketing is ineffective, but that’s not actually the case.

Why (And How) FOMO Is Used in Marketing

As we’ve already mentioned, FOMO marketing is becoming more and more popular, and for good reason. In short, this is because it works. Especially with younger generations, for whom social media and connecting with their peers is a significant aspect of daily life, the fear of losing out on rewarding experiences is very powerful.

FOMO marketing can, therefore, be a strong motivator to get your audience to act right away. The goal is for the user to be inclined to convert now, rather than to wait until later (which increases the risk that they won’t convert at all). This could take the shape of a limited time offer, such as a flash sale. It could also mean focusing on the exclusivity of a particular item, or highlighting your dwindling stock levels.

If you want to use FOMO effectively, the benefit of taking action now should be clear to the lead. What’s more, it should be obvious what they stand to miss out on. A perfect example of this is how many video game publishers offer exclusive bonuses when you pre-order their products:

An Advert For The Game Resident Evil 2, Showing A Series Of Exclusive Bonus Items For Pre-Orders.

Another example of FOMO marketing is displaying the number of people who are currently browsing the same product. This can help highlight its demand, and make leads more likely to take action while they have the chance:

Viewing A Hotel On Tripadvisor, Showing That 3 Other Users Are Currently Looking At The Same Page.

We’ve already mentioned that targeting FOMO in these ways can be hugely effective. However, this also makes it extra important that you use this technique ethically. It is perfectly possible to leverage FOMO marketing in a positive way, without taking advantage of your users or tricking them.

In short, don’t lie about your stock levels, or claim that products will expire when they won’t. Such tactics may be effective in the short-term. However, they’re dishonest and will ultimately lead to a decrease in the trust of your business.

As we pointed out earlier, focus on the benefits to the user and remain honest. That way, you can improve your conversion rates while keeping your customers happy.

How You Can Implement FOMO Marketing Using Popup Maker

At this point, you may be wondering how to put everything we’ve been talking about into practice. As it turns out, popups are a smart way of applying FOMO marketing techniques to your site. The key lies in understanding what message you want to share, and who you want to see it.

We’re now going to show you how you can use the Popup Maker plugin to create popups that speak to your visitors’ FOMO. This will not only help them make better purchasing decisions, but it stands to increase your conversions as well.

We’ve already touched on some of the ways you can implement FOMO marketing, such as by running a limited-time offer or highlighting product scarcity. These are the ideas you’ll want to put into practice when creating your popups.

To see this in action, let’s consider some simple ways you can use FOMO and popups together. For example, you could offer a limited number of coupon codes. These can be given away to specific users on a first-come-first-served basis.

You can do this by using Popup Maker’s Advanced Targeting Conditions extension to specify which users you want to target. For instance, you could display your FOMO popup to everyone who accessed your site from Facebook, or to visitors from a specific region:

Popup Maker'S Advanced Targeting Conditions Extension

The popup could then be triggered using the Exit Intent extension if you want to show the offer when the user is considering leaving the site. This is a perfect opportunity to encourage those on the fence to reconsider and can help to minimize cart abandonment in the process.

Popup Maker'S Exit Intent Extensions

This is particularly useful in cases where the user is considering a purchase but isn’t quite ready to finalize it. If you introduce a good deal that they can only use right away, they’ll be more likely to give your product or service a chance.

Alternatively, you could combine your targeting conditions with the Scroll Triggered Popups extension, in order to display the popup at a specific place on your site. This gives you total control over when the popup appears, so you can present it to maximize the FOMO appeal:

Popup Maker'S Scroll Triggered Popups Extension

After all, the fact that the user has scrolled down the page indicates that they’re interested in your site. This makes them more likely to consider your offer.

Finally, you could also use this extension to present an offer that’s relevant to the section of your site that a visitor is currently viewing. Going back to our example with the coupon codes, you could display the popup after they have scrolled down to read more about a specific product, indicating that they are considering a purchase.

These are just a few methods you can use, but they should give you an idea of what’s possible. By putting your knowledge of FOMO marketing into practice, you can easily create engaging and conversion-driving popups that both you and your users will appreciate!


Nobody wants to miss out on a good deal or be too late to buy a product before it runs out. This is why the Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) is such a powerful motivator when it comes to our purchasing decisions. As a marketer, you can leverage this feeling to your advantage – as long as you do so ethically.

In this article, we’ve discussed how you can implement trustworthy FOMO strategies into your popups using Popup Maker. For example, we’ve shown how you can use the Exit Intent, Advanced Targeting Conditions, and Scroll Triggered Popups extensions to highlight an offer that is exclusive to specific visitors.

Do you have any questions about FOMO marketing techniques, or how Popup Maker can help? Let us know in the comments section below!

Image credit: Pixabay.