Sadly, a lot of copywriting work I do is for brands looking to communicate what they do in a manner that is clearer, crisper and with less (sometimes more) fluff. It’s complicated, you see. And in the process, there are plenty of times when I find myself wanting to bang my head against the desktop after reading the same buzzwords & adjectives over and over again in brochures, reports, “about us” pages and white papers.
(Which reminds me, I seriously believe we could’ve come up with something far better than the term ‘white paper’.)
Then, like most of the copywriters, I go to Google to only find ten thousand ways to write a good copy but not a single way to avoid writing a bad one.
What do I do then? Like most of the copywriters – Right click. Synonym. Replace. Repeat.
And when we repeat this process, we get a list of words that are “exciting”, “extravagant”, “exclusive” and should be deleted from our marketing vocabulary right away.
So, what should a conscientious copywriter do? Well, maybe you could start by reading more thesis and poetry.
Or, if you don’t see yourself reaching for the collected works of [famous copywriter] any time soon, another, more direct approach you could take is to eliminate the following meaningless filler terms from your copy.
BEST / FINEST / GREATEST
Here’s a product headline you will never see: “We offer one of the best products in the industry.”
Why will you never see it? Because, like any proud parent doting on an unspectacular child, no company with a substandard product would ever admit it. That’s not how capitalism works! If you’re a marketing expert or an agency, a potential customer is already going to assume you think your product is the best. The catch is convincing the reader to agree with you.