Have you ever wanted your clients to have a vague idea of what you do? Would you like them to guess about your services? Do you hope they’ll be uncertain about how you can help them?
No, I didn’t think so.
Yet people continue to write and distribute promotional material and blog posts with nondescript words that do nothing to increase sales or attract new clients. Don’t waste your time with empty words. Here are nine words you need to cut.
- Very: An ambiguous word, this modifier doesn’t describe anything because it means different things to different people. Don’t tell people, We respond very quickly – that could mean 10 minutes or 12 hours. Instead, be specific. We respond to bid requests withing 24 hours. (Also avoid variations, such as really, extremely, etc.)
- Awesome (great, gigantic, etc.): Awesome savings every week! Sounds good, but how much is “awesome?” Do “awesome” savings mean you’re a clearance store where I can buy discontinued items for a fraction of their value? Instead of being vague, add details. 25% off suggested retail prices – every day!
- Just: People use this word to describe many things. Before you write it down, thing about what you’re actually trying to say. Contact us now with just one call. Are you trying to let people know how easy your service is? Then rewrite it as, Contact us now with simply one call. Or maybe how quick it to reach you: Contact us one with only one call! Don’t settle for a multi-purpose word when a different word can more precisely describe your work.
- Beautiful (pretty, stunning, gorgeous, etc.): Our rooms feature beautiful views. In this sentence, what does beautiful mean? Nothing. What’s beautiful to me could be monotonous to someone else. Just because you think something is beautiful doesn’t mean everyone else will. Instead of giving your opinion of something, simply describe it and let the reader decide if he/she will like it. Our rooms west-facing rooms provide panoramic views of Grand Traverse Bay.
- Repetition (not the word, the style): Don’t be afraid of pronouns! You don’t have to name your product in every single sentence. Doing so can actually make your copy more difficult to read.
These words don’t add anything to your copy. If anything, they can be misleading or – in the case of repetitious words – hard to read. Instead, look for words that highlight your uniqueness. Don’t make them wonder how big your “large financial library” really is, tell them specifically that you have 100,000 books available to lend.
By ignoring generic words and being specific, you create a more vivid and accurate picture of your products and services. When you’re generic, you’re just another muffler shop, but when you’re specific, people will remember you as the friendly staff selling top-of-the-line parts twenty-four hours a day.