800.959.8365

How to Use the Right Word to Get the Right Response

To increase response, consider treating every word and punctuation mark in your copy as your weapons of mass persuasion.

Each keystroke can propel — or deter — your prospects through your maze towards the cheese you want them to buy, says veteran copywriter Herschell Gordon Lewis, who regards marketers as the mazemasters.

Here are some of the ways he traps more "rats" than other marketers:

Some suggest, others direct
Even words that appear to mean the same thing can pack a different punch, says Lewis.

Two examples: Suggesting buyers should "respond" instead of "reply," for example, will increase response because "respond" seems like a smaller commitment. Similarly, saying your company "made" a product may be okay if you're trying to convey the down-home touch. But "manufactured" is better for sophisticated buyers.

A Quarter Pounder outsells 4-ounces
Other subtle changes can hook readers. For instance, compare these two sentences:

  • "This is what you want to see, isn't it?"
  • "This is what you want to see."
Sentences like the first always outsell the second because words like "isn't it" direct the reader. Even the same number or amount can seem more impressive when it's expressed a different way. Just imagine if a Quarter Pounder were described as a four-ouncer.
Info: http://herschellgordonlewis.com
Words that work
ban these
Requested
We shall
Error
Perhaps
Humorous
use these
Asked for
We will
Mistake
Maybe
Funny

Reprinted with permission from
The Marketing Report
370 Technology Drive
Malvern, PA 19355
800-220-5000

I am emailing because I am ECSTATIC!!!! I would like to thank the graphic designer who worked on my card as well as the staff that turned it out in remarkable time. The card looks great. It exceeds my expectations. The little things the designer did in cropping, placement, etc. all stand out and make the card shine. I received my cards one day earlier than I was supposed to. When does that ever happen??? What a relief. I had a tough deadline and crazy circumstances. Thanks for pushing my order through and giving me such a great product. I am so pleased! Thanks again.
Michelle Jones
Hoosier Magnolia