4 min read
5 Worst Marketing Buzzwords

You know the sound of nails on a chalkboard?  

How it just makes your whole body tense and cringe?


Or maybe your crazy aunt has too much caffeine and starts singing at the dinner table in the most awful, nasal voice you’ve ever heard?


No?  That one doesn't ring a bell?  Sorry, that was our family dinner last night in Miami… I guess you had to be there.  :)


Anyhow, I want you to really embrace the feeling of something annoying and grating that immediately triggers a negative reaction in you.  That feeling is exactly how I feel when I read these following buzzwords in marketing copy.  They really get under my skin!


5 Words That Drive Me Crazy


1.  Nuggets


Example: “You have to check out this webinar replay… there were so many good nuggets dropped!”


What?  Were people tossing perfectly good chicken tidbits on the ground in this webinar?  And if so, why is this a good thing??


Now, presumably this is a shortened version of saying gold nuggets, so why not just say that?  That would be slightly less annoying.  But the word “nuggets” in and of itself doesn’t bring any amazing connotations to mind, and it just sounds goofy.


I have never heard anyone outside of internet marketers use “nuggets” in this context, and it just sounds unnatural.  I would prefer to hear words that normal people use in conversation, like “words of wisdom”, “good advice”, or “valuable information.”  Maybe those words aren't as trendy as "nuggets", but they're timeless, everyone understands them, and they don't make you want to go buy a Happy Meal.


2.  Gamechanger


Really?  Your offer is really that big of a deal?  I kind of think you’re overblowing the importance of your product.


And just how many times can you change a game??  Because I receive emails on a regular basis that promise me an amazing new product that’s going to change my game.  By this point, we must just be playing an entirely different game!


“Gamechanger” is such a word of hyperbole.  I immediately feel like it’s an exaggeration, and it just makes me roll my eyes.  I’m not questioning whether you have a good product, but unless you’re legitimately building the next Facebook or YouTube, you probably can take the enthusiastic descriptions down a notch.


3.  No brainer


If you want to convince me not to buy from you, then “no brainer” is the perfect word to use.  Examples:


"I think this is what we in the product creation world call a "no brainer."


"Remember, just 24 Hours left and I will close this offer down - it’s a no brainer."


Is anyone else offended by this??


I feel like I’m being called an idiot if I dare to actually contemplate a purchase.  I find it such a condescending word... seriously, I almost can't express how infuriating it is when marketers use this.  If your offer really has value, it will speak for itself, and you won’t need to use a word that guilt trips me into buying!


4.  Family / tribe


I’ve read Seth Godin’s book (and thought it was great!), and I appreciate that there are groups of people who love being identified as someone’s tribe member.  My issue with these words is when marketers use them to create false closeness and relationship that isn’t there.  It feels fake and forced, and it has the exact opposite effect of what was intended for me… it pushes me away.  Example:

Email opening: "Hey Fam!"

My response: Ick.  I feel like I need to remove someone's unwanted arm from around my shoulders.  I'm not even sure if we're friends yet Mr. Marketer; we are most definitely not family.  Please take a step back, creeper!


5.  The door is closing


See also: ends at midnight!!, [DEADLINE], and carts are about to close!


Now, I understand that one of the cardinal rules of copywriting is to create urgency, otherwise people will dilly-dally and take their time deciding if they want to buy your product.  So I get the reasoning behind these phrases, and I know that the principle has value.  But I don’t appreciate the hyped-up approach that marketers can take.  If I were really super excited about your offer, I already would have bought it, so acting like it’s the end of the world when your offer disappears isn’t going to work on me… obviously I’m not that into it.  You can let me know it’s coming to a close, just try not to sound like the announcer for a monster truck show commercial (sunday, Sunday, SUNDAY!), k thx.


Let's Start A New Trend

I realize that what I’m saying might fly in the face of traditional copywriting training, and this is completely based on my personal opinions, so please feel free to take it with a grain of salt.  But I do believe that as our world and our inboxes get more saturated with marketing newsletters and offers, we grow more and more cynical and disenchanted with conventional approaches.


So join me in rebelling against joining the bandwagon of overused marketing cliches.  Let’s write fresh copy that genuinely compels readers to take action, rather than hyping, guilt-tripping, or panicking them into it.  I’m confident that it will make you stand out in those crowded inboxes and that it will pay off!


If this resonates with you and you’re looking for a team that is passionate, original, and dedicated to your success, check out our team!  I know you will find the training, tools, and support that you need to succeed!


Do you have any buzzwords like this that drive you crazy?  Leave me a comment and tell me what I missed!

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